Dropped my Macbook - I think I killed the hard drive - advice please!

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by chapmac, Dec 19, 2008.

  1. chapmac macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2007
    Location:
    UK
    #1
    Hi folks, any help/advice much appreciated,

    I dropped my Blackbook last night as I was leaving the office. It fell about 3 feet and landed on its corner. There was no external damage, and the machine was asleep at the time. I immediately opened the lid and it woke up up normally. I thought all was OK. A couple of hours later back at home I needed to use the machine, and again it woke from sleep quite happily. I used it for a few minutes including copying a spreadhseet from my time machine disk and making a few changes to it. Then the machine locked up completely - just a spinning beach ball but nothing was working, and eventually I just had to power down. Now it won't reboot, getting only as far as the grey apple screen and hanging with the fans running at full speed. So far I have done the following....

    -Reset the PRAM and SMC
    -Tried to boot in safe mode, it won't
    - Booted from a Leopard install disk. Tried to run disk utility, which recognises a disk is there, but all the options to check/repair the disk are greyed out so I can't do anything
    - Ran Apple hardware test, it came up with an error code which is related to the hard disk (sorry I don't have the code with me), but included the characters SATA so I am assuming that's what it is

    My hunch is that the shock of the impact has done something unspeakable to the hard drive - anyone got any advice/suggestions?

    The machine is a Santa Rosa Blackbook with a stock 160Gb disk and running 10.5.6 by the way.

    Thanks in advance.....

    Dom.
     
  2. jono_3 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2005
    Location:
    Canada
    #2
    you can get a 250gig 7200 rpm 2.5" hd at ncix for a little over $100. more space, performance, and hopefully it will fix it.
     
  3. GreatDrok macrumors 6502a

    GreatDrok

    Joined:
    May 1, 2006
    Location:
    New Zealand
    #3
    The drive on my original Core Duo MacBook Pro keeled over a few weeks back. It would just make a clicking noise as it tried to boot and held at the apple logo. I booted into single user mode to see the output as it tried to boot and it was having lots of disk errors. The 100GB drive was pretty full but I had a time machine backup from the day before so I wasn't worried. Bought a 320GB drive for $161 (NZ$ at that so roughly $90 US) and had to get a set of tools to open the machine up (T6 Torx was a problem to get hold of) and I replaced the drive. Back up and running, restored my drive contents, still got 240GB free and the machine runs much quicker because the new drive is about twice as fast as the old one was.

    You have backups, take the opportunity for the upgrade with good grace and get the machine back up and running :D
     
  4. chapmac thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2007
    Location:
    UK
    #4
    Update: managed to get to the drive by starting it in target mode via firewire connected to another mac. Got hold of the files I need and repaired the disk. It's not working perfectly, but it does now boot
     
  5. anish3232 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2008
    Location:
    Lexington, KY
    #5
    Just get a new HDD and use Time Machine to backup the computer to the way it is now. Works great just did that method on my AlMacBook a few weeks ago.
     
  6. GreatDrok macrumors 6502a

    GreatDrok

    Joined:
    May 1, 2006
    Location:
    New Zealand
    #6
    It is unlikely that the drive will last any time. I've had this happen on two of my laptops and although it is possible to 'repair' the disc it will fail again as soon as it tries to use the damaged sectors. It is a ticking time bomb and the next time it fails you may well be somewhere that you really need it and it won't work. I had taken mine to a conference in Brisbane and the machine had never failed before but it literally just stopped dead on the first night I was there so I spent the entire conference using my Nokia cell phone to do e-mail and basic browsing (not a nice experience) or worse, having to use a Windows laptop I borrowed. It was so uncool because there were all these Mac users around and I was a Mac guy too and I wanted to stand on a chair and shout out about how I really was a Mac user but.......

    I can understand why PC users get a bit snotty. Their machines are sooooo nasty to use.
     
  7. Big Mafoota macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2008
    Location:
    Pontypool, Wales, UK
    #7
    Could it be something as simple as a connector coming loose? It's worth opening it up and having a look. I always look at the easy to fix solutions before I do anything drastic with my bank card.
     
  8. GreatDrok macrumors 6502a

    GreatDrok

    Joined:
    May 1, 2006
    Location:
    New Zealand
    #8
    Very unlikely. Once you've gone to the effort of opening it up you might as well replace the drive (in the case of my MBP anyway where I had to take the whole top of the case off to get at the drive).
     
  9. chapmac thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2007
    Location:
    UK
    #9
    Been away for the weekend so haven't been able to reply....just to say thanks for the replies.

    HD is limping along but not going to risk keeping it as this machine is the way I make my living and I can't sisk it going down. New hard drive is in order, along with an upgrade to either 250 or 320 GB - can't believe how cheap they are these days!
     
  10. SFStateStudent macrumors 604

    SFStateStudent

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2007
    Location:
    San Francisco California, USA
    #10
    Congrats on the new HD upgrade. Sorry to hear about your dropped BlackBook...:(
     
  11. Bengt77 macrumors 68000

    Bengt77

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2002
    Location:
    Europe
    #11
    You could also throw your MacBook up, unto the ceiling. Maybe it'll fix itself that way?!...
     
  12. plinden macrumors 68040

    plinden

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2004
    #12
    If you travel much ... or even commute with a laptop ... I suggest bringing along a bus powered drive (like the Mercury on-the-go from OWC ... a small drive like that is just about 3/4 lb or 300gms). Use supderduper or carbon copy cloner to keep it synced with the laptop internal drive at least daily. If your internal drive craps out, you can always boot from the external. And if you do it right, the external drive will fit inside the MacBook so it could be swapped in.
     

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