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Old Jan 5, 2013, 05:37 PM   #1
funnybanana
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Software or HD problem?

Hey there,

I'm hoping someone here can help me out. A couple days ago I was using my laptop, and it all of a sudden froze with the spinning beach ball. I tried restarting numerous times, and my Mac could not load past the apple symbol and spinner underneath; it will not even boot into recovery mode! I haven't heard any abnormal noises coming from the hard drive, so I'm wondering how I can tell if this is a hardware or software issue. If it's the former, I plan on purchasing a Seagate Momentus 7200 this weekend and installing that. I don't know what to do on the software front-- any ideas? This is on a late 2009 Macbook Pro running the most updated Mountain Lion.
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Old Jan 5, 2013, 05:40 PM   #2
simsaladimbamba
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Have you tried any of these steps?
Mac doesn't boot

Resolve startup issues and perform disk maintenance with Disk Utility and fsck

Troubleshooting: My computer won't turn on

A flashing question mark appears when you start your Mac
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Old Jan 5, 2013, 05:50 PM   #3
funnybanana
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I have tried PRAM and SMC resets. Unfortunately, I cannot boot into safe mode or recovery mode (it just spins). Thank you for the links, though. If I manage to get into recovery mode somehow I'll be sure to try disk utility/terminal commands. I just wish I backed up all my data...

Lesson learned.

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Old Jan 5, 2013, 07:57 PM   #4
funnybanana
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Okay, so after many reboots I was finally able to get into recovery mode. Disk Utility is unable to mount my internal hard drive, which is leading me to believe I have a dead drive. So the question is, how do I put Mountain Lion onto a new drive once I swap it in? Any advice would be appreciated. Thank you!
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Old Jan 5, 2013, 07:59 PM   #5
simsaladimbamba
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Quote:
Originally Posted by funnybanana View Post
Okay, so after many reboots I was finally able to get into recovery mode. Disk Utility is unable to mount my internal hard drive, which is leading me to believe I have a dead drive. So the question is, how do I put Mountain Lion onto a new drive once I swap it in? Any advice would be appreciated. Thank you!
No Mac coming with Mac OS X 10.7 Lion or OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion has physical restore media included.

OS X: About OS X Recovery

If you want to make a bootable installation medium, you can follow these steps:
Lion DiskMaker

Create bootable installation medium for OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion
MacBook, MacBook Pro: Replacing the Hard Disk Drive, transferring data to the new HDD

the guide includes:
  • 0. Identify your MacBook or MacBook Pro
  • 1. Getting a new HDD
  • 2. Guides to replace the internal HDD with a newer one
  • 3. Transferring data from the old HDD to the new HDD
  • 4. Using the optical disk drive (ODD) slot for placing an SSD or HDD inside the MB/P (OPTIBAY)
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Old Jan 5, 2013, 08:38 PM   #6
funnybanana
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This is great; thank you, you've been a nice help.
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Old Jan 6, 2013, 12:45 PM   #7
philden
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If you have a 13" 2009 MacBook Pro, or similar, there is another potential problem point - the hard drive cable. I recently thought I had a disk failure which turned out to be the cable.

So a good thing to try is to take out your hard drive, put it in an external firewire or USB enclosure and see if you can run from that OK. If so you can then replace the cable.

I had to repair my disk first using disk utility from my 10.6 install disk before it would boot, after connecting as an external drive.
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