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Apple Notebooks Apple's notebook computers including MacBook Pro, MacBook, MacBook Air, PowerBook, and iBook.

MBP 2.33ghz; fail to power up after disk drive grind... SUCCESS!!

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Member Since: Jun 20, 2011
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simey_binker is on a distinguished road

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THIS IS A SUCCESS STORY - I was typing up my "no boot up" issues here... and then FOUND A SOLUTION while writing this! I'm going to post this as documentation for others to follow if they have similar issues.

(I'm a long-time Mac user; I've owned 3 MacBook Pros, iBook G3, many iMacs, Mac Pros, several iPhones and iPods and gotten all my friends and family to buy these products so I didn't have to keep on fixing their PCs. it was purely selfish motivation...)

I have a MBP 2.33ghz (removable battery), 3GB RAM etc. it's been running great for years without a hitch. sometimes it's had this thing where I open it, and it seems to not wake up - but after a hard reboot everything is fine. no big deal.

for a computer of this vintage, it should be expected that the battery cannot hold it's charge very well. perhaps an hour of usage. I used it on Sunday without it being plugged in, drained it down to perhaps ~25% and then didn't plug it in until this morning (Monday). I could imagine the battery could have plummeted well below operational level. even after a full charge during the day, and then when left overnight (asleep) without being plugged in it will often loose about 30%.

I plugged her in this morning with the lid closed, and I heard the disk drive grumble as if it were waking up (despite not opening the lid yet). this often happens when you've previously unplugged an accessory when it is shut, and asleep. I can't remember if this is the case, but no big deal.

I opened the lid, and it was a blank screen. because it attempted to wake up with the lid shut, I assumed the computer had gone back to sleep. this also happens often. usually I can hit any key, and the disk drive will grumble/grind again, and it'll jump to life.

but this time, nothing.

that's ok - perhaps the battery is SUPER drained. sometimes I need to hit the power button, and the screen will come on translucent grey, and it will refresh itself it seems as a bar graph moves across the screen... but not this time...

hit the power button... blank screen. I can hear the fans quietly whirring away, and the sleep-light is half-lit.

no worries - press and hold the power button, force it to shut down. then boot up again. this is the "hard reboot" I mentioned in the third paragraph.

the disk drive grumbles and grinds... waiting for the screen to light up... nothing. fans whirring quietly... sleep-light is half-lit... no chime... nothing.

reset the SMC (power off, unplug, battery out, hold power button for 5 seconds, battery in, plug in, power on - Intel-based Macs: Resetting the System Management Controller (SMC))... nothing.

reset the PRAM (Resetting your Mac's PRAM and NVRAM)... didn't seem to do any good because there was no chime noise.

booted up the computer without the battery... same issue... still nothing.

I have two chips of RAM - one at 1GB and the other at 2GB. I took out the 2GB one made by Cosair, only had the 1GB chip in it, and tried a boot up... nothing...

I swapped them; put the 2GB chip in, and took the 1GB no-name RAM chip out (serial number starts with MT? has a logo of an "M" on it).

power button... grumble... GREY SCREEN! CHIME!!!.... grumble grumble... CHIME!! OSX BOOT UP!! YEEEAAAAAH!!!

so, I'm going to go home and backup all my stuff now and change my pants because I think I soiled myself. once everything is secure, I'm going to put the 1GB chip back in just to confirm that THAT was the issue. I may buy another 1GB chip eventually - but I'm just glad she's working again.

I was worried it'd be the logic board (several hundred dollar replacement), or my harddrive (several important documents lost).

REMEMBER KIDS; BACK UP YOUR STUFF. even Mac savvy guys like me can get into accidents. no one is invincible!

in my quest for knowledge, I saw many articles and posts of people running into the same issue. consider following the procedure outlined above, and you're bound to find a solution.

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Glad to hear you got it working again.

MBP 3,1 & 4,1 w/ Vertex 4 SSD | Logic Pro 9 | Ableton Live 8 | Traktor Pro 2 | AKAI MPK-49 | Roland MV-8000, TR-808 & TR-909 | Ensoniq ASR-10 | x0xb0x #911 | Denon DN-MC6000 | (3) Technics SL-1200MK1 | 3000+ vinyl records
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