2008 Macbook Aluminum won't boot from Good HD

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by DmbShn41, Jan 20, 2014.

  1. DmbShn41 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2009
    #1
    So I have a 2008 Macbook Aluminum model. Got this as used with previous owner stating liquid damage. When I got it, it wouldn't boot at all. Through diagnostics, was able to determine that the keyboard/power button was bad as I can start it by jumping the power pads on the logic board. It had no HD at the time, so I felt good at least that it turned on, screen in great condition, etc.

    I took the HD from my Macbook 1,1, which has Snow Leopard 10.6.8 on one partition, and Windows XP SP3 on the other side. The Macbook 1,1 boots no problem, is my daily driver, so I know its good. When I place this HD in my Aluminum Macbook, and jump the power pads, I get startup chime, fan spinning, a white screen, and then a flashing folder with question mark.

    I know the folder with question mark is an issue as it can't find a system OS to start, or a bad connection to HD/SATA at motherboard. I checked cable at motherboard, and verified proper connection to HD. Trying to think if there is anything else:

    -Bad SATA connector on motherboard?
    -Bad SATA cable?
    -Shouldn't I be able to run this computer and hardware with the HD drive that I use to run my Macbook 1,1?

    Basically, I'm trying to figure out what I need to buy next...lol. I have a new keyboard coming in the next couple of weeks, so short of having that, I can't really do any Command+P+R, etc. I was just wanting to boot the computer with a good hard drive to verify that things worked. I was hoping to check out the internals at least, with the trackpad, and possibly a wireless keyboard. Any help appreciated.

    Thanks ~
     
  2. Twimfy macrumors 6502a

    Twimfy

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2011
    Location:
    UK
    #2
    If you have some form of USB>SATA connector (you can strip them from USB hardrives). Then you could try booting your 1,1 disk from USB. That would rule out an incompatibility with that installation and the ALUBook (although to be fair it should work but worth checking).

    If it works you have a SATA problem. If it doesn't then you'll likely need to try a fresh installation on a new hard drive.
     
  3. DmbShn41 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2009
    #3
    Thanks for the response. Am I correct in surmising that to boot from a USB>SATA connector, I would need to punch a key stroke or combination? Hold the option key as it restarts?
     
  4. Twimfy macrumors 6502a

    Twimfy

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    Sep 11, 2011
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    UK
    #4
    Hold option on boot. Should give you the USB drive as an option.
     
  5. DmbShn41 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Jun 22, 2009
    #5
    I'll have to give that a try in a few weeks when my keyboard shows up... No chance I could plug in a USB keyboard and get that to be recognized from boot up?
     
  6. DeltaMac macrumors 604

    DeltaMac

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    Delaware
  7. DmbShn41 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2009
    #7
    So, tried the USB keyboard, and that worked. However, when trying to boot off the Snow Leopard CD, with a blank HD in drive, I kept getting EFI password screen. After I was able to get around that, I was able to boot off CD. And wouldn't you know it, the trackpad doesn't work either...there's another $30.....So I plugged in the USB mouse and that worked.

    However, once booted of CD and running Disk Utility, the HD is not discovered. Going to take HD out of other Macbook and try boot to CD off that. Still back to the bad SATA cable/SATA connection on mother board.

    Everything else working thought, that I can tell. Wifi, display is great, determined that half of the keyboard work, just not the half that provides any value. Will let you know if this works.

    Thanks~
     
  8. BrettApple macrumors 65816

    BrettApple

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2010
    Location:
    Heart of the midwest
    #8
    If the motherboard is messed up and the sata connection to the hard drive is bad, you might try connecting it where the optical drive goes. May be worth a shot, nothing to order and easy to plug in.

    Derp, read your last post. Seems that if it's booting from cd then it should boot the hard drive where the optical is then. You'll just have to use a flash drive or external optical to install the OS.
     
  9. mentaluproar macrumors 68000

    mentaluproar

    Joined:
    May 25, 2010
    Location:
    Ohio, USA
    #9
    Are you sure someone didn't feed your macbook some Yuengling? It sounds like that board is dieting, and will very soon be dead. I suggest looking for another model like that on ebay with a busted screen.
     
  10. DmbShn41, Jan 24, 2014
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2014

    DmbShn41 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2009
    #10
    BrettApple,

    Seems that the connection at motherboard for optic and HD are different. Upon first inspection, that won't work.

    Mentaluproar,

    Yuengling isn't allowed in my house . Strictly Coors Light diet here. I bought Macbook as is from eBay in hopes of making it daily driver, over a Macbook 1,1.

    I'm going to see how it reacts with new keyboard in a week or two, then go from there. Thought I read somewhere that when a macbook can't detect built in keyboard, that could trigger a flashing folder with question mark. But that doesn't make entire sense as when booting from optical, HD isn't recognized. I'm debating on buying hd cable from eBay for $10. That's a safer risk than $300 logic board. Tax return coming soon, so maybe 2013 MacBook Air isn't too far out of budget.
     
  11. mentaluproar macrumors 68000

    mentaluproar

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    May 25, 2010
    Location:
    Ohio, USA
  12. DmbShn41 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2009
    #12
    Yeah, I want to, but hard to swing the cost with the wife. I thought if I can get this 08 to running condition, maybe sell it on eBay for a reasonable price. They're going between $400-600. Selling that and getting a MacBook Air is doable, as cost wouldn't be so tremendous.

    This 08 has a great display, case has minimal scratching, regular wear after 5+ years. I feel I can easily get $200 + with it as is, which is more than I paid for it. But I like resurrecting Apple products. Great for learning.

    Going to get a new external hd enclosure today. Will try to see if I can get this booted and running off USB.
     
  13. DmbShn41 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2009
    #13
    Success!

    Was able to get the Late 08 running. Apparently the two spare HD i have laying around are trash, as neither of them worked in my new external enclosure. I took my HD from my Macbook 1,1, and put it in enclosure, and it shows just fine on my Mac mini. So I took that out, and placed inside the Late 08, and booted to Snow Leopard CD. HD showed up, both partitions, Mac OS and Win XP. I was pissed when I saw that. Because not 30 minutes prior, I was for sure that the HD/SATA could be bad, so I bought one from eBay. And now it works??

    Once confirming that was good, I shut it down, and booted normally. Everything loaded, it's currently running right now, tried Geekbench 3(2403/1346), just putting it through its paces to see all whats not working. As soon as it came up, it showed it couldn't recognize the keyboard and asked for me to put a series of pre selected keys, but that didn't work. Trackpad is flaky, but other than that, its rolling good right now. Battery only has 130 cycles on it. Everything seems great, except for keyboard and trackpad. I have that coming this week, and I'll probably scoop up a trackpad in a day or two.

    Now, keep it or sell it to move up to MBA? I have always lusted for an Aluminum Macbook....Thanks for all the help. Once I get it finalize sand truly mobile, I'll report back.
     
  14. Twimfy macrumors 6502a

    Twimfy

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2011
    Location:
    UK
    #14
    If you get the trackpad and keyboard working. Max out the ram and stick in an SSD and you've got yourself a really good machine for a few years.

    Make sure it's free of dust and consider a thermal paste replacement then put it though some intense tasks to make sure it's all good.
     
  15. DmbShn41 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2009
    #15
    Keyboard coming in this week. took trackpad out and cleaned down, same result. I can get by with the 'tap to click' option for now. When I first got this beast, I tore it down completely and got quite a bit of junk out. Previous life, it was stationed in Arizona, and compounded by a liquid spill. Also cleaned the cpu and gpu down and applied new thermal paste.

    Currently running 4GB RAM. Incidentally, two years ago when I bought a new 2011 Mac mini, I upgraded the 2GB RAM stock to 8GB, but inadvertently bought 1066 memory, which will run in the Late 08 I believe. So I only need to buy 1333 memory for my Mac mini, then add a SSD later. I stole the HD from my Macbook 1,1 and am about to upgrade it to Maverick. Now I need to buy a HD for my 1,1 so I can get that running and sell that. This has turned out to be a great weekend. The possibilities are endless.
     
  16. Twimfy macrumors 6502a

    Twimfy

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2011
    Location:
    UK
    #16
    Yeah I think 1066 is the default for that model. Mavericks will run ok on 4GB but I'd really try to take it to 8GB if you can.

    Congrats on getting it all working though. So many liquid damaged Macs never come back from the dead.
     
  17. DmbShn41 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2009
    #17
    Other than a trackpad, Macbook is running. Keyboard install went smooth. Now I can power on without having to remove bottom case and jumping the power pads...Typical luck for me, I bought the keyboard and it mentioned keyboard only. So two days later, I buy a backlight for $5 on ebay. Keyboard showed up today, with backlight already attached. SO, I have a backlight for sale if anyone is interested...
     

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