Dropped old 2009 Macbook Pro. Can you guess the damage?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by NJRonbo, Feb 25, 2011.

  1. NJRonbo macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2007
    #1
    Wouldn't you know it. The day the new Macbooks
    are announced I dropped my 2009 17" Macbook Pro
    on the hard floor at work. Slid right off the desk...
    ..and wham!

    I was going to buy a new Macbook in any event, but
    not necessarily this week, which I just ended up doing.

    So, here is what is happening with the Macbook that
    was dropped...

    Initially, it would not boot up at all. However, through
    persistant power "ons" I can get it to boot up.

    It boots up, but slowly. It can take 8 minutes for it
    to boot to the password screen.

    Everything loads. Sometimes, however, I will be in the
    middle of a task and everything freezes up. It either
    unfreeze itself in a couple minutes, or, I have to reboot
    the computer. Seeing a lot of spinning Mac balls.

    Anyone want to venture a guess what damage I did?

    Almost seems minor. I suppose I can take it to Apple
    to fix it, but with the few hundred they may charge me
    I thought it better just to buy a new laptop.

    ...and please be easy on me. I'm not happy that I had
    to drop $3k this week on a new loaded 17" laptop. Was
    hoping to wait till the end of the Summer.
     
  2. neko girl macrumors 6502a

    neko girl

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2011
    #2
    I'm sorry to hear that. Were you at least able to grab your data?
     
  3. Mars478 macrumors 6502a

    Mars478

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2008
    Location:
    NYC, NY
  4. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    located
    #4
    It may just be the HDD, try starting the new MBP in Target Disk Mode and connect it to the old MBP and boot the old MBP from the new MBP and see how it goes.
     
  5. NJRonbo thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2007
    #5
    Hi Neko!

    Yeah, I can get the data. I am positive I can
    port it all over to the new Macbook using firewire.

    Just kind of wondering what damage I did. I am
    guessing the hard drive took a nice knock.

    The OS is loading, albeit very slowly. Once it
    finally boots up, it works quite well though suddenly
    the spinning ball will appear and then everything locks
    up. As I noted, it will either unfreeze itself or I have
    to reboot.

    ....then there are times it works for a good hour
    with no problems.
     
  6. NJRonbo thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2007
    #6
    Fixable?

    I can still cancel my Macbook order as it
    has not shipped.
     
  7. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    located
    #7
    Buy a new HDD and insert it into the MBP. iFixIt and Apple shows how to in their guides.
     
  8. ohla313 macrumors 6502a

    ohla313

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2010
    #8
    not sure if you did this already but maybe you can open the back and check the SATA connector of your hard drive to see if it is loose? Could just be a hard drive issue.
     
  9. NJRonbo thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2007
    #9
    You know what? Gonna cancel my order.

    What kind of hard drive does the 17" Unibody
    model from 2009 take?

    I'll order one ASAP.
     
  10. elpmas macrumors 68000

    elpmas

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2009
    Location:
    Where the fresh snow don't go.
    #10
    Have you ever done a clean install...? That should usually fix the "8 min" boot time...lol.
     
  11. simsaladimbamba

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    Location:
    located
    #11
  12. pricej636 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2010
    Location:
    Colorado
    #12
    I would open it up and re-seat the RAM and HDD before I bought anything.
     
  13. 8000rpm macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2011
    #13
    Sorry to hear about the drop. Any external damage?

    And yes the advice above is spot on it sounds like a hdd problem. If you can turn a door knob, trust mr you can swap in a hard drive. Since you were looking to buy a whole new machine, upgrade to a nice ssd and you will be drop proof if it happens again too!
     
  14. NJRonbo thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2007
    #14
    Thanks to all of you.

    Just cancelled my order. Thank God it
    did not ship.

    I have a torx screwdriver. Found the
    guide on iFixit.

    Tomorrow I will open up the machine and
    press down on the ram to be sure it is in
    place as well as make certain the SATA
    cable is firmly plugged into the drive.

    A new hard drive is less than $120 so I
    am much happier to deal with that expense
    right now.

    External damage? Yeah, a noticeable dent
    above the ethernet plug and silver chipped
    off the unibody along the top of the screen.

    Doesn't make that "bong" sound anymore
    when turned on.

    Thank God the screen is intact.

    I'll update anyone that is interested
    tomorrow afternoon.
     
  15. ruftytufty macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2005
    Location:
    Berkeley, CA
    #15
    I think that no bong essentially means that the firmware is detecting some hardware fault on boot. Surprising that it boots at all, but it's certainly a good sign.

    Before opening it up, I'd suggest running Apple Hardware Test: http://support.apple.com/kb/ht1509
    and see if that turns up anything.

    If not, when you open your MBP, reseat any connector that you can get your hands on (keyboard, optical drive, hard drive), in addition to reseating the memory. Of course, look for any internal physical damage..
     
  16. NJRonbo thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2007
    #16
    rufty,

    I have to thank you. You saved me $3k.

    First, I checked the linked support site and
    as instructed, ran the Apple Diagnostic disc
    that came with my Macbook. It showed no
    hardware issues.

    I then opened up my Macbook and removed
    the hard drive using a Torx screw.

    I took the SATA cable off and firmly placed
    it back on. Packed everything back up.

    Turned on the Macbook. BONG! I was
    amazed that I heard that noise.

    The Macbook booted up instantly. It is
    working flawlessly.

    THANK YOU so much -- and to everyone
    else in this thread.
     
  17. Mars478 macrumors 6502a

    Mars478

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2008
    Location:
    NYC, NY
    #17
    You should probably buy a new MBP once they redesign them in 2012! Yours works fine for you right now.
     
  18. NJRonbo thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2007
    #18
    Unfortunately the good news was a
    false alarm.

    Acting up again. Stalls at boot screen.
    If I do get it booted up it works, then
    screen freezes.

    So I am back to plan A of buying another
    Macbook as I don't want to take the chance
    of just replacing the hard drive and finding
    out its something else.
     
  19. pricej636 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2010
    Location:
    Colorado
    #19
    Still, for $100 you can buy a HD and re-use it in your new macbook if it doesnt work. Did you remove the RAM completely and reseat it? Ive seen quite a few threads of people will boot problems and it ended up it was ram not seated properly, especially after a drop.
     
  20. egglybagelface macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2011
    #20
    yikes, do MBPs really break that easily?

    I have a 5 year old Dell XPS M140 that's been dropped a couple of times in its life and I've never had a problem with it. Of course, it's always fallen onto carpeted floor, not tile, wood, or concrete.
     
  21. pricej636 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2010
    Location:
    Colorado
    #21
    Plenty of threads around of dropped machines that worked fine other than some ugly dents.
     
  22. ruftytufty macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2005
    Location:
    Berkeley, CA
    #22
    I think this >could< be the hard drive, but concluding that the hd is the problem is jumping the gun at this point.

    as before, i'd suggest reseating >all< of the connectors that are easily accessible, in addition to reseating the memory.

    if that doesn't fix it, then run the extended version of hardware test to see if that turns something up.

    finally, run diagnostics on the hard drive: to mostly eliminate possibility of other problems with the dropped MBP, boot it into target mode (if it will), hook it up to another Mac that has Firewire, and run some disk tests on it. e.g. Disk Utility>Repair Disk if that's all you have; some more extensive tests if you have other system test software.
     
  23. NJRonbo thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2007
    #23
    rufty,

    Thank you so much.

    Hard drive ordered. Will have it tomorrow.

    In the meantime, right now, the unit has
    problems booting up. Takes several attempts
    and it is slow.

    Eventually, it will boot up and it works perfectly
    for an hour or so, then suddenly freezes us.

    I am going to attempt to back up all the data
    today and then transfer it to the new drive
    tomorrow.

    Will post an update tomorrow night.
     
  24. Fubar1977 macrumors 6502a

    Fubar1977

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2010
    Location:
    North Yorkshire, UK
    #24
    Just a thought...
    It might be worth taking it into an Apple store just for a diagnosis.
    You are not under any obligation to have it repaired there afterwards and you may well get the diagnosis FOC.
     
  25. NJRonbo, Feb 27, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2011

    NJRonbo thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2007
    #25
    Fubar,

    That would be a last resort, but good advice.

    Interesting Observation....

    SuperDuper is copying over contents from
    possibly damaged hard drive to an external.

    A couple times the screen totally froze up,
    but SuperDuper kept transferring.

    I was finally able to get the entire drive
    transferred over to an external.
     

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