MacBook Troubleshooting

The MacBook replaces the iBook, with a Intel processor, magnetic Magsafe power connector, integrated iSight camera, and 13.3" widescreen display.

MacBook won't turn on ¶ 

Your computer will not boot.

RAM issues ¶ 

If your computer beeps three times, there is a RAM issue. Either you have insufficient RAM to boot, or the RAM you do have is faulty. First, access (Core Duo or Core 2 Duo) the RAM slots and ensure you have RAM installed. If you have two chips, first reseat them and try again. If that doesn't work, try one chip at a time to see if one of the chips prevents the machine from booting. If none of these work, you may have a bad logic board.

Bad DC-in board ¶ 

If your DC-in board is bad, you will not be able to start your computer when it's plugged into the wall. It may or may not run on the battery and the light on the power adapter will not light up at all (some power adapters do not have lights, so this may not apply to your computer). If this is the case, you must replace (Core Duo or Core 2 Duo) the DC-in board.

Bad power adapter ¶ 

If your power adapter is bad, the computer will run off a battery, but it won't charge. If your battery is too low, it will be difficult to diagnose a bad power adapter. The easiest way to test this is to borrow either a battery or power adapter to test in your machine. If you have the same problem with another power adapter, your problem is most likely the logic board. Compatible power adapters are IF113-046 and IF113-045.

Bad logic board ¶ 

If replacing the DC-in board and battery doesn't fix your problem, then you need a replacement (Core Duo or Core 2 Duo) logic board. We carry logic boards for every MacBook model. There are some variations within specific processor speeds of MacBook logic boards. For example, the 1.83 GHz Core Duo logic board has 2 options: 3-wall or 4-wall heat sink connectors. The 2 GHz Core 2 Duo logic board has 2 options: Energy Star and non-Energy Star. Be sure to read the part description to ensure you are purchasing the correct logic board for your machine. Select your model for logic board options: Core Duo, Core 2 Duo (Late 2006), Core 2 Duo (Mid 2007), Santa Rosa, Penryn, or Early/Mid 2009.

Laptop shuts off when I unplug it ¶ 

As soon as you unplug the computer from a power source, it shuts off.

Dead battery ¶ 

If your battery is dead, the computer will run fine off the power adapter, but will turn off when unplugged. A dead battery can manifest itself in many forms: It may not accept a charge (this particular symptom may also indicate a problem with the logic board), the computer may not recognize the battery, or the battery may be recognized as charged but fail to power your computer when the AC adapter is unplugged. We sell replacement batteries.

Flashing question mark on startup ¶ 

The computer displays the flashing question mark when it can't find a bootable operating system. This could be because your OS is corrupt, the computer doesn't have enough RAM, or your hard drive is failing.

Bad operating system ¶ 

Try booting off an OS CD. Run Apple's Disk Utility and try to repair the disk. You could also try Alsoft's DiskWarrior. If this fails, reinstall your operating system. If you can, erase the hard drive prior to reinstalling the OS.

Not enough RAM ¶ 

This is quite rare. If you have insufficient RAM for your computer to boot the operating system, you may get the flashing question mark. Installing more RAM (Core Duo or Core 2 Duo) or downgrading to an older operating system will fix this. You need 128 MB RAM to run OS X 10.0-10.4, and OS X 10.5 requires 512 MB RAM.

Bad hard drive ¶ 

The hard drive may have been erased, corrupted, or damaged. If the hard drive has been erased, format it as HFS+ and reinstall your operating system back onto it. If it is corrupted or damaged, you need to replace (Core Duo or Core 2 Duo) it. Failing hard drives can display intermittent data corruption prior to failing completely. They often gradually get louder and start to click. If your hard drive is making abnormal clicking noises but still works, back up your data immediately and replace the hard drive. Any of our 9.5mm SATA hard drives will work in your computer.

My screen looks black, but I can see faint graphics on it ¶ 

The screen is very dark, but everything else seems to be running. If you get in close with a flashlight, you can usually see the image faintly.

Backlight ¶ 

If your backlight isn't working, the inverter may be bad. Other parts that may be bad are the display or the logic board. If your backlight fails intermittently while moving the display, the problem is with the inverter cables. Otherwise it is impossible to test for damaged parts without replacing them one by one. If you are comfortable taking apart the display assembly, replace the display inverter first, then replace the LCD. If you are not comfortable with this, you can replace both parts at once by replacing (Core Duo or Core 2 Duo) the display assembly (Core Duo, Core 2 Duo, or Santa Rosa/Penryn). If this still doesn't solve your problem, you need a new logic board.

The trackpad and keyboard don't work ¶ 

The computer boots, but the trackpad and keyboard do not work, and USB devices (such as a mouse) do not work.

This is uncommon, but it does happen. The problem arises as a result of the design of the MacBook. The section of the board with the ports and the section near the fan slot are grounded via the metal shield on the lower case. Screws in these areas complete the ground circuit for the logic board. If a logic board is tested while not in the case with these screws installed, the result can be a short in the logic board. When this happens, the trackpad, keypad, and input devices do not work. The only solution is to replace (Core Duo or Core 2 Duo) the logic board.

None of the above ¶ 

Nothing above matches your problem, or you've tried a solution suggested above, but it didn't help.

If you lose firewire, USB, audio or ethernet, the only thing to blame is the logic board. Because there are many components of the logic board, numerous possible symptoms indicate logic board failure. Any one of these components can fail and leave the others intact. If you lose the use of another component of your computer, such as the display, battery, or even power, and replacing the apparently non-working part didn't fix the problem, it is possible that the logic board may need to be replaced (Core Duo or Core 2 Duo).

Comments Comments are onturn off

My computer will run for about 10 minutes after the power adapter is unplugged but then it will shut off. Do I have a bad battery?

jcrandall, · Reply

I have studied the disassembly routine quiet precisely and think one can do it really itself, I mean to disassembly the MacBook Pro. But there is still a open question for me left. Logical spoken, to reassemble the hole MacBook Pro is just the reverse way how to disassemble it.

Okay so far so good concerning the clips and screws, but how do I fix the "protecting tapes" and "sheet" on the keyboard connection etc.?

Do I need a special glue?

Do I leave them of?

It would be very helpful, if I can have a hint ore even some further pictures "how the reassemble" the protecting parts "tapes" and "sheet"!

Godfredolo, · Reply

My Mac need to warm up(after press Power button it will run but screen is black) for about 10~15 mins before it can startup.

Will Faulty Ram cause this problem?

KENGY, · Reply

Hello,

I have a Macbook white 2.0 late 2006 model (core 2 duo), 2GB 667 MHz DDR2 SDRAM, OS X 10.4.11.

Since early days it is not restarting when I choose too. Well at the beginning it used to restart from time to time, and now not at all. I am normally force shutting it by that long press hold on power button, and then I power it back up.

Now, at these few times that it is surprisingly restarting, it's not coming up with airport on. Meaning, the signal/symbol of the airport/wifi, is not there, and it can't detect a network at all :-)

So I normally shut it down again, but properly, and then up again, and when I make shore that the airport is there, and I simply continue working :-)

Never checked this thing in a lab, did all different kind of test and updates, checks, repairs and tricks... but nada!

It works fine for last 2 years and half (except heating and a slow cooling fan, and some slow performance from now and then, and those cracks in the the body and the battery life... well I guess it is simply tired, really it's not a complaint :-) :-) :-)

from time to time I am checking if if someone came across with that kind of problem, and what would be a solution, but I did not find.

Well I guess i need to replace something, and i would love the self home made solution :-) I guess I also want to know if I am hurting the poor guy by force shutting it down all the time.

Bueno, many thanks in advance if you take your time to answer that (even read that), cheers, long living and prosperity.

S.

perfecto, · Reply

MacBook won't turn on - try removing k/b and shorting out pins in the k/b connector on the main board. Does it fire up? If yes then problem with switch or cable. Unfortunately, not a servieable unit.

pixellated, · Reply

My MacBook takes about 15 minutes until starting (asks for my user password) and if I don't make a move for 10 minutes it goes into hibernation it wont start again...

I've noticed that its temperature rises above normal high enough to burn my hand. The the transformer has the same temperature behavior...

Can anyone halp me?

iJorge, · Reply

lost most ofthe keys but not the touch pad

rosefamily2, · Reply

Quote from KENGY:

My Mac need to warm up(after press Power button it will run but screen is black) for about 10~15 mins before it can startup.

Will Faulty Ram cause this problem?

yes it can be, if you can swap it out try that, else you can try reseting the PMU and nvram which may solve the problem or atleast help you narrow down on the problem.

luke

monkey82, · Reply

Quote from iJorge:

My MacBook takes about 15 minutes until starting (asks for my user password) and if I don't make a move for 10 minutes it goes into hibernation it wont start again...

I've noticed that its temperature rises above normal high enough to burn my hand. The the transformer has the same temperature behavior...

Can anyone halp me?

If the temp gets too high it can damage or effect the performance or even damage the other components, recently I fixed a machine where the processor had burnt out the hard drive.

Can you hear the fans inside going?

if your still covered with apple care I would take it in have a tech check it out, sounds like a nasty problem.

monkey82, · Reply

Quote from jcrandall:

My computer will run for about 10 minutes after the power adapter is unplugged but then it will shut off. Do I have a bad battery?

replace the battery or keep it plugged in :)

monkey82, · Reply

Hi I've noticed when I put my Macbook to sleep (I usually do this rather than shut down) it will sometimes be fully or partially run down when I open again. It seems to be switching itself on, sometimes.

If I'm not mistaken this can happen with the lid open or closed.

Any ideas?

Thanx.

cheeryble, · Reply

Quote from cheeryble:

Hi I've noticed when I put my Macbook to sleep (I usually do this rather than shut down) it will sometimes be fully or partially run down when I open again. It seems to be switching itself on, sometimes.

If I'm not mistaken this can happen with the lid open or closed.

Any ideas?

Thanx.

I would check the power saver settings (to do with the power being on with the lid closed etc)

If you think the battery is loosing charge really quickly check for battery firmware updates, else replace the battery.

luke

monkey82, · Reply

Has anyone come across a failed isight camera. Not picked up by the system profiler and the apple SMC reset guide does not seem to cover 2006 model? Tried SMC reset The guy who had the machine before had the HD replaced apparently it worked before but he had not used it since? Any Thoughts appreciated Thanks

Sentinel1, · Reply

My macbook 1.83 ghz core duo is 3 years old now and is showing age. the display flickers to white a pale versions of normal when the laptop hinge is moved. sometimes it is rendered unuseable due to this problem and has to be put aside. when i return later it works. please help!!

pacman7182, · Reply

My macbook never leaves the initial boot up gray screen with the apple in the middle. Eventually a window pops up telling me to restart it. Even after a restart the same thing occurs. Has this occurred to anyone? Any help will be greatly appreciated.

fworks, · Reply

I just changed my harddrive but it's not being recognized by my macbook. after some attempts to restart it says sth. like "no name!" (I cloned my old hd / copied it to the new one before. it should work, as a friend did the same.) any ideas? thank you so much!

surleau, · Reply

Quote from fworks:

My macbook never leaves the initial boot up gray screen with the apple in the middle. Eventually a window pops up telling me to restart it. Even after a restart the same thing occurs. Has this occurred to anyone? Any help will be greatly appreciated.

This has just happened to me. I have no solution right now :(

tereska, · Reply

Quote from tereska:

This has just happened to me. I have no solution right now :(

Have had this problem since August....Apple's 'solution' is to replace the motherboard, but they can't explain what is actually happening and why it doesn't boot. Anybody know if a dead PRAM battery will cause a no-boot condition like on some PPC desktops?

jrwhalley, · Reply

Ok, so I started the notebook up with the disc originally provided, luckily it liked that, then I cleaned everything off the h/drive and reinstalled the O.S.

Everything is working fine.

I was just 2 days offline but was prepared to go and buy a new one

(B----- war games!!)

tereska, · Reply

If you want replies to your comments go to Answers!

machead3, · Reply

Quote from fworks:

My macbook never leaves the initial boot up gray screen with the apple in the middle. Eventually a window pops up telling me to restart it. Even after a restart the same thing occurs. Has this occurred to anyone? Any help will be greatly appreciated.

Have had a similar situation, in my case it was a corrupted filesystem on the boot volume. Try to boot from CD first, if that works, boot in to single user mode (press Command + S, or only s, don't remember, during boot, a black MS-DOS like screen appears, with lots of messages) read the lasts lines, there is a command explanation to run the fsck (file system check) by hand. only if you start it by hand, it will try to repair the file system even if it looses some data.

hope this helps...

sam, · Reply

I have a problem with my macbook A1181.

When the laptop is running, if I press hard the keyboard or the case on the left or right, my computer shuts down immediately.

At the same time, if I press hard the keyboard, the Shutdown window pops up asking me if I want to shutdown the pc and in some cases after some seconds it shuts down anyway.

I can't use my laptop anymore.

Any suggestions?

Thanks! This website is terrific!

Max

Baaald, · Reply

Quote from Baaald:

I have a problem with my macbook A1181.

When the laptop is running, if I press hard the keyboard or the case on the left or right, my computer shuts down immediately.

At the same time, if I press hard the keyboard, the Shutdown window pops up asking me if I want to shutdown the pc and in some cases after some seconds it shuts down anyway.

I can't use my laptop anymore.

Any suggestions?

Thanks! This website is terrific!

Max

If you want replies to your comments go to Answers!

machead3, · Reply

I recently replaced the LCD on a MacBook 13.3 white model. That went fine, however, I noticed that the trackpad no longer worked. It turned out that I broke the ribbon cable accidentally. I replaced the ribbon cable that goes from the keyboard to the logic board. When I powered on after the fix, the screen flashed once and the system went to what I can only describe as to power save mode, wit the front light fading in and out. I thought maybe I broke the inverter board somehow. I replaced it and it is still doing the same thing. Is it possible that the logic board just died on me, because I cannot figure this one out?

Bob McPherson, · Reply

my macbook doesn't charge any more what should i do?all i do is plug it in and it doesn't charge and i've use multipul chargers

Lewis, · Reply

search troubleshoot charging in helpful Answers sub search macbook. It could be your DC-in board, or, your battery.

machead3,

late 2006 white macbook2.1 No: MA700LL/A Model No: A1181 (EMC 2121), upgraded from stock 1 gb memory to 2 gb with amazon/crucial. worked great. few months later, upgraded to 4 gb (undocumented support for 3-4 gb, see http://www.everymac.com/systems/apple/ma... ) using "bargain" komputerbay sticks (2gbX2). system crashed repeatedly. removed and returned system to 2 gb crucial configuration. lost various keys (no delete, space bar, fn, arrow, etc). Several SMC and 1 PRAM resets later and keyboard functionality returns (after ordering new keyboard top!). Upon reestablishing keyboard functionality, I swapped the 2 gb (1gbX2) with 4 gb CRUCIAL (2gbX2) and have 4 gb recognized and smoking performance on boot. Lesson learned: research the vendor (and read reviews).

shawn beightol, · Reply

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