The March 2015 update of Apple's 13" MacBook Pro Retina Display, model A1502, features fifth-generation Intel Core i5 and i7 processors and introduces the Force Touch trackpad.

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Keyboard and trackpad not working except on Linux Ubuntu or Windows


Here is my issue :

The keyboard (except the power button) and the trackpad are not responding.

The keyboard lights but the shift key does not lights the led.

The trackpad unlock well the "force touch".

The keyboard and trackpad works perfectly well when I boot on Linux or Windows USB key.

Apple "Genius" Bar said : replace ribbon cable or replace all the top case (and give us money).

Independent repairer does something, the problem is fixed when I pick up the computer. The issue reaper when I do a 30 minutes bus/walk to home (x3 times). We don't understand nothing.

At the beginning, the problem appeared intermittently : I'm at a place, it does not work. I walk to another place, 30 minutes walk, it is working again.

The computer is on Mac OS X High Sierra 10.13.1 and the issue was only seen on the High Sierra version.

Can someone help ?

Thanks !

Answered! View the answer I have this problem too

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If you paid the guy that did the repair "Independent repairer does something, the problem is fixed when I pick up the computer. The issue reaper when I do a 30 minutes bus/walk to home (x3 times). We don't understand nothing." Ask for a refund if it broke half an hour later.


Thanks for the reply Aiden Baker but the independant repairer guarantee the reparation for 3 months, so I only paid once and if they don't repair it, I will see... ;)


My guess is that there's component damage on the logic board causing intermittent problems. If the problem happens sporadically, it's entirely possible that it started working while it was in the repair shop's possession and the repair shop decided to deem it fixed.


@rarson But why is it perfectly working when I boot on a USB key with Ubuntu or Windows ?


@davidlibeau It's entirely possible that the other OS drivers do not utilize some of the hardware capabilities. For instance, I've seen plenty of computers, both Windows and Mac, that do not boot properly in normal mode when using the correct graphics driver, but boot fine in Safe Mode using the generic Safe Mode drivers.


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The issue is the trackpad cable, nothing else. Causes intermittent issues which is why it's working in MacOs when picked up from the independent place (usually works/stops working when the lid is closed and opened).

It works in other OS' since they do not use certain signals travelling through the trackpad cable, which MacOS uses. At a guess, it has something to do with the SPI signals I believe; I think when you run Linux/Windows on a Mac they do not use SPI signals for the trackpad and instead use the "USB" trackpad signals, since the OS is emulated on the Mac.

Basically, replace the trackpad cable and it will resolve your issue.

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Thanks for the reply, I will try this and comeback here to tell if all works fine again.


Repaired, with a new ribbon cable ;)


This solution didn't work for me at all. First tried updating to High Sierra from El Capitan, then PRAM reset, then SMC reset, then new ribbon cable, then new trackpad and ribbon cable. NONE of it, other than loading an Ubuntu partition, allowed me to use the trackpad and keyboard. Riddle me that one.


@Sarah In fact, after two weeks of use, the problem appear again. I ordered a second new ribbon cable to see if it work, but this is really strange.


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David Libeau will be eternally grateful.
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