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

MBP won't recognize internal HDD... help?

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Member Since: Apr 07, 2007
Posts: 7
ipushmycar is on a distinguished road

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I have a 2006 15" Macbook Pro (Core Duo).

About a year ago my MBP began constantly freezing and many times unable to locate the HDD when booting up. I figured this was a HDD problem so I "temporarily" installed OS X on an external HDD.

A year goes by and my MBP is still running off an external HDD. Just last week I bought a new internal HDD and installed it myself. The new drive had the same problems as the old one- freezing after a couple minutes of use and then could no longer be found. I returned it after reading that many of the Seagate Momentus drives are defective. I bought a new Western Digital and it couldn't be recognized by the computer at all.

Now that I know the HDD isn't the problem, I'm assuming it's one of two problems-

1. The SATA cable needs to be replaced.
2. The SATA port on the motherboard is blown.

I'm just wondering if anyone has any experience or knowledge with this problem. My MBP is out of warranty so all repairs need to be paid for. I can order a new SATA cable for $20-$40, or I could take my MBP in for repairs and probably need to spend way more. Does anybody have any insight on what the problem may be? Anyway I can test to see if the SATA cable and motherboard are working properly? I'm leaning towards buying a new SATA cable as a last effort of fixing this thing myself. Otherwise I have a feeling professional repair will be quite costly.

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I would go with the new SATA ribbon cable for starters. That particular ribbon cable undergoes a lot of heat once the machine is closed up. Internal breaks on those types of cable is quite common as they tend to dry up from the heat. After drying up, they can easily crack with the least amount of flexing.
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