Released April 2010 / 2.4, 2.53 GHz Core i5 or 2.66, 2.8 GHz Core i7 Processors

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MacBook Pro won't start up and makes a tone that repeats?

My MacBook pro was working fine and unexpectedly now will not power up. I have a black screen when the power button is pushed and it makes a single mono tone that repeats until I hold the power button down to power off the computer. It is a 2010 model #A1286. Does anyone have any suggestions? I would appreciate your help. I am traveling in Mexico and nowhere near an apple dealer.


Ken M.

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2 Answers

Chosen Solution

It sounds like your laptop doesn't believe it has any RAM. Try reseating your RAM, then try booting. If it boots you should be good to go, the RAM had become loose in the slot. If you get the same thing then pull one of the RAM chips/sticks, then try booting. Power down and move the installed chip to the other memory slot/bank, then try booting. If it boots through this process you know you have a good chip, in a good slot. If you get the tone you know you either have a bad chip or a bad slot. Continue this process with the other memory stick until you have tested both chips in both slots. This process will tell you if you have a bad RAM chip (that needs replaced) or a bad RAM slot (you will have to live with 1 stick of RAM or get the motherboard repaired/replaced).

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+1 beep = no RAM installed

2 beeps = incompatible RAM types

3 beeps = no good banks

4 beeps = no good boot images in the boot ROM (and/or bad sys config block)

5 beeps = processor is not usable


how to overcome this problem


Same problem in a 17" MBP model A1261. Thanks SO MUCH for the above answer. Looked like one RAM module was not fully inserted in its slot. Not sure at all how that happened, but with teenage boy in house, anything is possible. Took both cards out, put them back in, and voila! Daddy fixed it.


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i found out if i remove 1 ram chip from my MBP 2010 it starts up fine. i had to go buy an 8GB ram chip to compensate for the loss of a ram slot

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