Early 2008 MacBook Pro will not boot

TheMacBookPro

macrumors 68020
Original poster
May 9, 2008
2,131
1
Hey all-

I have an early 2008 ('Penryn') MacBook Pro that I've been using as a secondary machine in the office. Recently it decided that it did not want to start up- just shows the flashing ? folder icon. Have tried zapping the PRAM already.

Popped in the original 10.5.2 restore disk and tried to boot using that. Holding down C yields nothing more than a white screen, Opt yields nothing more than a cursor.

Tried a Mountain Lion USB drive. Holding down Opt shows the yellow (external) Mac OS X drive, but hitting Enter doesn't do anything.

It sounds like a hard drive failure to me, but I can't verify that without getting into Disk Utility.. and this has me concerned that there's a bigger problem than just the hard drive if I can't even boot into a recovery drive.

Fortunately I have everything backed up so I'm not concerned about losing my files, I just don't want to go out and buy a new hard drive for nothing :p

Many thanks.
 

TheMacBookPro

macrumors 68020
Original poster
May 9, 2008
2,131
1
The blinking folder means that it can't find a usable startup drive. Check out the hard drive it might've died.
I agree, but is it normal for a Mac to refuse to boot into recovery media if it can't find a startup drive (perhaps it won't boot into recovery if it doesn't see a hard drive connected?)

Thanks!
 

Duff-Man

macrumors 68030
Dec 26, 2002
2,976
2
Albuquerque, NM
Duff-Man says....a couple general things to try. Re-seat the ram, may have just jarred a bit loose and that can obviously create boot issues. How long did you leave it trying to boot from the original DVD? Those things are *really* slow and it some people give up before it's started doing its thing. Could be the optical drive is flakey too as that happens a lot (I had both my MBP optical drives replaced under warranty).

You say it's a secondary machine. Is the main one a Mac as well? Connect both via a firewire cable and try booting the MBP into target disc mode and running disk utility from the main computer....worth a shot anyway and might help narrow it down a little.....oh yeah!