Bad hard drive - worth replacing?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by mjwilco, Aug 15, 2013.

  1. mjwilco macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2013
    #1
    Hello everyone,

    I have a 2009 13" MacBook Pro, and it is fully backed up on my Time Capsule. After years of stable performance, the hard drive suddenly seems to have died. I get a flashing question mark folder when I start up, and booting from the OS 10.6 disk to use the utilities doesn't get me anywhere. Neither the Restore From Time Machine Backup utility nor the Disk Utility an find the hard drive at all, much less try to fix it. I also cannot proceed through the process to reinstall the OS because it cannot locate a drive to install to.

    So this leads me to believe the hard drive has died. Am I correct? If I am, what are the opinions on installing a new hard drive vs. buying a whole new (used) laptop? I'm fine buying a <$100 drive if it will get me another year or two out of the machine.

    Thanks for your opinions!
     
  2. OS6-OSX macrumors 6502a

    OS6-OSX

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2004
    Location:
    California
  3. DanielCoffey macrumors 65816

    DanielCoffey

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2010
    Location:
    Edinburgh, UK
    #3
    I agree that a compatible SSD will be a wonderful upgrade if the laptop suits your current usage.

    If you are not comfortable doing it yourself, there are places you can take it into for the work to be carried out professionally. Personally I would stick to a proper licensed Apple Reseller and avoid the high street "We Fix U Broken MAC" types. You know the ones... you give them your laptop for an upgrade like this and you get a phonecall saying they opened it up to inspect and now the logic board needs replacing before you can have it back.
     
  4. mjwilco thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2013
    #4
    Awesome folks, thanks for replying. I am comfortable installing, formatting, etc., but how do I pick out a drive that I know will be compatible? I have no idea what specs to look for.
     
  5. robvas macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2009
    Location:
    USA
    #5
    Pretty much any 2.5" 9.5mm drive will work. It's the most standard and common laptop size.

    If you want speed+space, get a 750GB Western Digital Black. $69.99 or so. If you just want a drive to get back online, you can find a 250GB drive on Craigslist for $20 or so.

    You could also get a solid-state drive, and you'd only have 128GB of space for $100 (could increase your budget to $150 and get a 256GB drive) but it would be lightning-fast. Since you have a 2009 MBP I would get a Samsung drive.
     
  6. ramram55 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2012
    #6
    Go with SSD should give your MBP a new life, you can go for another 3 years or so, no guarantee though. DIY install should be the way to go.
     
  7. surroundfan macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2005
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #7
    Get a 120GB SSD, 8GB of RAM and (in due course) Mavericks for ~$200 all up and you'll have a computer that'll work well for at least another couple of years...
     
  8. robvas macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2009
    Location:
    USA
    #8
    He will still be saddled with the C2D which is very old pretty slow for anything that isn't casual use.
     
  9. ramram55 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2012
    #9
    One good thing is if you get sata 3 ssd drive, should you get another cmbp in future, you can install this ssd into that one too.
     

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