Fixing a broken MBP (no noob questions in here)

Drag'nGT

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Sep 20, 2008
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Figured out what was wrong.

Based on the ASD's hardware results I'm not sure how I like this answer but the Mac store said the MBP fried some metal/plastic part on the CPU which is causing the issues.

Additionally I'm interested in why the Corsair Mac branded ram failed the ASD test...

Thanks for the help guys! And if you still think of anything related to the ASD results and ram issue, I'm still checking this thread.


_______________________________

I got a hold of the Apple Service Diagnostic for the 2009 MBP and ran the hardware test software (EFI) with the 8gb of Corsair ram in the computer. Here are the results:






After I got the error codes that I assume is entirely ram related, I swapped back to the 2gb that came with the computer and re-ran the test. The computer passed. So I started the computer up and then.... it prompted me to shut it down and restart.

The logic board passed on every test. The ram appears to be the only thing that caused the issue, YET I can't get it to boot when I try and turn it on.

So what is my next step?
Should I run the Apple Service Diagnostic OS on it now to see what it says?
Should I get the ram replaced while I can? It looks like it might be bad.





-------------Older first post info below-------------

09 MBP
OSX Lion
Lion USB and DVD available

My uncle's MBP just had a kernel panic. He restarted it like the screen said... restarted and it came back to life about 4 or 5 different times (individual panics in one day). When it wouldn't boot at all, he gave it to me. :rolleyes: So I'm supposed to save it. :rolleyes: I'm the underpaid Apple man in the family.

So here's the issue. I finally got it to boot to my Lion USB to use Disk Utility to repair the drive. It said that it was unrepairable and to back it up and reformat it.... So I put it in target disk mode since it wasn't booting and got all of his files off. When in target mode my mac said that his disk was shot and need to be backed up and reformatted.

Here's where it's giving me hell. I got the thing to load my Lion USB again and then reformat it once (simple/quick way) and then tried the install. At the "select language" box I got a kernel panic...... So then I threw it in TDM and then did a secure wipe to clean it off all the way. Since OSX boots a little picky I thought that writing all 0s to it would help.

I haven't gotten a kernel panic from it since then but it didn't retain a connection with my USB after I tried to boot it and install Lion from the USB. My USB stick lit up at first and indicated it was in use and then just stopped. I had the Apple logo and pin wheel spinning for a few minutes and nothing. So I tried my DVD next. It loaded to the language screen again and after I clicked the arrow to move forward the dialog box left and then it hung for 15 seconds and then cut off.

1. Am I dealing with a bad logic board? Even though the disk is what showed the errors?

2. Can I install Lion in TDM and avoid this installation hickup? Would that even fix my issue?

3. I did change the ram in this computer about 2-3 weeks ago. I tested that by putting the old ram back in it. When it was still failing to boot. And the problem persisted. I'm pretty darn certain the ram is fine since you can't force it in and down unless it's seated properly.

Thanks for the help! I really appreciate it.
 
Last edited:

Tumbleweed666

macrumors 68000
Mar 20, 2009
1,657
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Near London, UK.
Can you take the disk out, put it in an enclosure and then run some soak tests on it, so as to be able to differentiate between the MBP logic board and the disk drive? Otherwise its hard to see how to disentangle the two as to the cause of errors.
 
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Drag'nGT

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Original poster
Sep 20, 2008
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I can. I'm heading to the gf's right now and just Googled soak tests. What app do I need to run to perform one? I'll let it run over night when I get back.
 
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bschwarz86

macrumors newbie
Jan 22, 2012
3
0
If it were me I would go ahead and assume it is the Harddrive that has failed for one reason or another ie. sudden jolt due to dropping the laptop, maybe you shocked the internal electronics when you changed the memory(this has happened to me many times when I was younger building my own computers), humidity(does he live in florida?), ect.

Buy a new HD from somewhere that allows returns(usually 7 day return policy on new HD's). Make sure it is a compatible spec to that specific computer.

Install it and try again. Could be that your file transfers between the disc and thumb drives are being stopped due to a bad HD.

This method has always been the fastest way for me to tell if it is the HD, just buy a new one...if it still fails return the HD and continue on.

I have been fixing and building computers since I was 7 years old(19 years). 7/10 times it is a HD failure...

hope this helps
 
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Drag'nGT

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Sep 20, 2008
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Install it and try again. Could be that your file transfers between the disc and thumb drives are being stopped due to a bad HD.
Thanks to both of you. I'll try another hdd. What is confusing to me is how it works long enough to give me all his info when in TDM.
 
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Tumbleweed666

macrumors 68000
Mar 20, 2009
1,657
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Near London, UK.
I can. I'm heading to the gf's right now and just Googled soak tests. What app do I need to run to perform one? I'll let it run over night when I get back.
No doubt there are apps, but I'd just copy files onto it and from it, leave that running a while, delete them, start again. I dont think you need anything fancy.

And of course you can use verify disk in Disk Utility
 
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Drag'nGT

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Original poster
Sep 20, 2008
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I haven't gotten a new hdd yet. Haven't had the time but I just installed Lion over TDM to the MBP and started it back up. It was working great for 2 minutes and then poped up the restart computer dialog box. I'll have to try a new drive tomorrow.

If the drive doesn't fix the issue... then what? Take it in for Apple to look at?
 
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Drag'nGT

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Original poster
Sep 20, 2008
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Just to update. The hdd is fine and even a different hdd gives me the prompt to restart the computer. So at this point I'm left to.....? Take it to an Apple repair shop or just replace the logic board?
 
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Jethryn Freyman

macrumors 68020
Aug 9, 2007
2,329
2
Australia
I'd blame the logic board, a hard disk shouldn't do that. If you can get your hands on the official Apple Service Diagnostic, try burning that to a DVD and running it. Also are you sure your Lion USB is fine? I don't think it'd be the problem though. Really though I think it's the logic board, if you're under warranty then it's worth it to get it replaced, though I'd still run the ASD on it if possible.
 
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torana355

macrumors 68040
Dec 8, 2009
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Sydney, Australia
Hold down "d" when you reboot the MBP and it will enter hardware test mode, this will tell you if its a hardware failure and what bit of hardware has failed.
 
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Drag'nGT

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Sep 20, 2008
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Holding down "d" doesn't give me a hardware test mode. Even with my Lion DVD in it.

I'll check back after I find the ASD and run a test.
 
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kbfr08

macrumors 6502
Mar 16, 2007
463
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Holding down "d" doesn't give me a hardware test mode. Even with my Lion DVD in it.

I'll check back after I find the ASD and run a test.
If you think the logic board is shot, I'd point fingers at the GPU. Do some basic stuff first, SMC Reset, reapply thermal paste to heatsink, check for loose cables, liquid spills, clogged fan vent, etc..

I had a couple of these in with similar problems, and the GPU was shot. If you, or the genius bar come to that conclusion, logic board replacement is pretty much the only option. You can order a new part, which is very expensive, but there are a few companies offering repair services on eBay which will do it at a fraction of the cost. Aside from that, check the board for spills and clean it up if you find anything (use isopropyl 90% or more), spilled liquid likes to hide underneath the lcd connector.
 
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Drag'nGT

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Sep 20, 2008
1,753
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I'd blame the logic board, a hard disk shouldn't do that. If you can get your hands on the official Apple Service Diagnostic, try burning that to a DVD and running it. Also are you sure your Lion USB is fine? I don't think it'd be the problem though. Really though I think it's the logic board, if you're under warranty then it's worth it to get it replaced, though I'd still run the ASD on it if possible.
Hold down "d" when you reboot the MBP and it will enter hardware test mode, this will tell you if its a hardware failure and what bit of hardware has failed.
If you think the logic board is shot, I'd point fingers at the GPU. Do some basic stuff first, SMC Reset, reapply thermal paste to heatsink, check for loose cables, liquid spills, clogged fan vent, etc..

I had a couple of these in with similar problems, and the GPU was shot. If you, or the genius bar come to that conclusion, logic board replacement is pretty much the only option. You can order a new part, which is very expensive, but there are a few companies offering repair services on eBay which will do it at a fraction of the cost. Aside from that, check the board for spills and clean it up if you find anything (use isopropyl 90% or more), spilled liquid likes to hide underneath the lcd connector.
I got a hold of the ASD and ran the EFI hardware test portion. I have my updates and pics of the results posted in the first post.

Thanks again for your time. :apple:
 
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Drag'nGT

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Original poster
Sep 20, 2008
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Guys, I'm dying to know what's going on with this thing. Is there any info I need to get and give you to help figure out what this is?
 
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Drag'nGT

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Original poster
Sep 20, 2008
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Bump for what I think fixes my problem. Or atleast it's what I'm told...

Updated 1st post.
 
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