Getting Beach ball spinning on every little thing I do with Macbook Pro

xp0z3d

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jun 18, 2012
122
2
I have Macbook Pro since 2012. It has never given me any trouble since then.
Its 2.5GHz i5 with 8 GB Ram running OSX 10.9.3

But since yesterday afternoon it has started behaving very annoyingly. Now every little thing I try to do gives me that spinning beach ball. I mean every little thing. Lets say for example I try to know About this Mac, after clicking that apple icon, I have to wait a minute for ball to spin and then let me get to menu and after clicking on about this mac another minute to wait.

Even as I type this, after every few words I type, ball spins and won't let me type so I have to wait and type more and again wait. When I check RAM usage shows almost more than 50% to be free. Checked activity monitor and could not find anything out of ordinary there either. So what could be troubling my laptop?

I want to find out the problem and solve it, if someone can help me ?
 

SandboxGeneral

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Sep 8, 2010
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Detroit
It sounds like you could have a hard drive that is failing. Do you have a good backup with Time Machine or other backup software?
 

xp0z3d

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jun 18, 2012
122
2
It sounds like you could have a hard drive that is failing. Do you have a good backup with Time Machine or other backup software?
Yeah I have time capsule as backup. Although have not done the back up since some weeks, but will do now. But I was wondering, even typing on a forum has lead to that ball spinning, is that also because of hdd failure?

Hi,

you might use Disk Utility to check/repair the disk, repair the permissions, then boot in safe mode, etc...

I suggest a "all in one" solution : download and run "Maintenance" (this is a light version of "Onyx").

Any warning message from Maintenance ? Let us know.

Then see how the Mac behaves and let us know.

http://www.titanium.free.fr/downloadmaintenance.php
Thanks, will def do and let u know.
 

SandboxGeneral

Moderator emeritus
Sep 8, 2010
26,063
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Detroit
Yeah I have time capsule as backup. Although have not done the back up since some weeks, but will do now. But I was wondering, even typing on a forum has lead to that ball spinning, is that also because of hdd failure?



Thanks, will def do and let u know.
Yes, it can be. There could be bad sectors on the platter right where the computer needs to read/write to and if it can't or has too difficult a time, it can slow you right down causing the beach balls and errors.
 

KeegM480

macrumors 6502a
Aug 13, 2013
778
17
Orlando, FL
Almost guarantee it's the hard drive, I had the same issue, put an SSD in since Apple kept telling me it wasn't the hard drive causing the issue, and as soon as the SSD went in it all issues were gone. I had tried everything before buying an SSD, which I reccommend you do!
 

xp0z3d

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jun 18, 2012
122
2
Hi,

you might use Disk Utility to check/repair the disk, repair the permissions, then boot in safe mode, etc...

I suggest a "all in one" solution : download and run "Maintenance" (this is a light version of "Onyx").

Any warning message from Maintenance ? Let us know.

Then see how the Mac behaves and let us know.

http://www.titanium.free.fr/downloadmaintenance.php
Done it. Only thing Maintenance told me was to repair disk while restarting computer. So I did that using disk utility. Which checked disk and said no errors etc but I still repaired it. Also checked with SMART reporter shows no errors. But I can not find any other explanation so far other than disk being the culprit? Is it possible something else might be the problem?

Almost guarantee it's the hard drive, I had the same issue, put an SSD in since Apple kept telling me it wasn't the hard drive causing the issue, and as soon as the SSD went in it all issues were gone. I had tried everything before buying an SSD, which I reccommend you do!
yeah I guess u r right. but buying an SSD online and installing it, will take me some days, do you think this current disk would last maybe a week or so?

----------

And guys what SSD would work fine with 2012 Macbook pro? I mean when looking to buy, what I need to consider other price and size?
 

SandboxGeneral

Moderator emeritus
Sep 8, 2010
26,063
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Detroit
I just put a Samsung 840 EVO in my 2012 cMBP a few weeks ago. It works great. Previously, it had a Samsung 830 in it. It worked great as well. I only upgraded it because I could and felt like it.
 

xp0z3d

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jun 18, 2012
122
2
I was reading on 840 EVO looks like a good one. So I just wanted to make sure its HDD before spending any money, as I m tight on money right now. I don`t want to buy it and find out that HDD was not the problem. Anyway to make sure its HDD thats failing?

Also so I buy SSD, replace old HDD with it, Do I need anything additional to fit it inside Macbook or nothing is needed? After that I understand I would be able to boot new SSD using Time capsule?
 

SandboxGeneral

Moderator emeritus
Sep 8, 2010
26,063
9,245
Detroit
It will fit perfectly inside where the HDD goes, and once you fire it up, you can restore from Time Machine and get all your stuff back on the new drive just like it was before.
 

Weaselboy

Moderator
Staff member
Jan 23, 2005
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California
I was reading on 840 EVO looks like a good one. So I just wanted to make sure its HDD before spending any money, as I m tight on money right now. I don`t want to buy it and find out that HDD was not the problem. Anyway to make sure its HDD thats failing?

Also so I buy SSD, replace old HDD with it, Do I need anything additional to fit it inside Macbook or nothing is needed? After that I understand I would be able to boot new SSD using Time capsule?
I agree with the others it does sound like a bad drive. It is less common, but a bad drive cable can cause this same issue. Unfortunately there is no good way to tell which it is without taking the drive out and testing it in an external enclosure that takes the internal cable out of the mix.

Once you install the new drive you can just option key boot to your Time Machine disk then format the new drive and restore. That will put the OS and all your apps and data on the new drive.
 

xp0z3d

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jun 18, 2012
122
2
I agree with the others it does sound like a bad drive. It is less common, but a bad drive cable can cause this same issue. Unfortunately there is no good way to tell which it is without taking the drive out and testing it in an external enclosure that takes the internal cable out of the mix.

Once you install the new drive you can just option key boot to your Time Machine disk then format the new drive and restore. That will put the OS and all your apps and data on the new drive.
So I will put in new blank SSD, but my Macbook would be still able to connect to my Time capsule over Wifi or i would need a wired connection for restoring back?
 

SandboxGeneral

Moderator emeritus
Sep 8, 2010
26,063
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Detroit
So I will put in new blank SSD, but my Macbook would be still able to connect to my Time capsule over Wifi or i would need a wired connection for restoring back?
You really want to have it wired up for doing a restore. Doing it over WiFi will take forever and may not actually complete because the bandwidth is too small for such an operation.
 

xp0z3d

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jun 18, 2012
122
2
Ok thanks guys. So I will get SSD and will have it by middle of next week I guess. But do you think I would be able to make this current HDD work till then?
 

SandboxGeneral

Moderator emeritus
Sep 8, 2010
26,063
9,245
Detroit
Ok thanks guys. So I will get SSD and will have it by middle of next week I guess. But do you think I would be able to make this current HDD work till then?
It all depends on the HDD really. It could last until next week, next year or quit by the end of the day. One never knows.
 

xp0z3d

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jun 18, 2012
122
2
It all depends on the HDD really. It could last until next week, next year or quit by the end of the day. One never knows.
And other than HDD there is no other thing that might be messing up like this, right? Because I think i will get SSD by Tuesday if I order today on Amazon. So want to check for other wrongs also.
 

Weaselboy

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Jan 23, 2005
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California
So I will put in new blank SSD, but my Macbook would be still able to connect to my Time capsule over Wifi or i would need a wired connection for restoring back?
I apologize. I misread and did not notice you said Time Capsule and that changes things a bit. You cannot boot from a Time Capsule like I described. It works a bit differently with a Time Capsule than a local Time Machine disk.

Put in your new drive then hold command-option-r when you boot. You will get a spinning globe while the 650MB recovery utility downloads. After that the recovery screen will come up. Use Disk Util from there to erase your new disk to Mac OS Extended (Journaled) format. Then quit Disk Util and click Restore from Time Machine backup at the top.

Like SandboxGeneral mentioned, do this over wired ethernet for fastest results.

Ok thanks guys. So I will get SSD and will have it by middle of next week I guess. But do you think I would be able to make this current HDD work till then?
Just no way to know. It could last five more minutes or for months.
 

Weaselboy

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Jan 23, 2005
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California
Hi Weaselboy, you are right of course, but just for info command-r will work the same in the case of a blank new disk ----> Internet recovery.
This is true. I just out of habit always tell people to use command-option-r to bypass any other disks that may be mounted with a recovery partition so there is no doubt we are in Internet recovery.
 

xp0z3d

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jun 18, 2012
122
2
Also guys i just realized that my time machine backup is aprox 400GB in size. but the SSD I have ordered is only 250gb. So how will I restore? Is there way to restore only system files and apps etc and not rest of extra stuff?
 

Weaselboy

Moderator
Staff member
Jan 23, 2005
30,174
9,853
California
Also guys i just realized that my time machine backup is aprox 400GB in size. but the SSD I have ordered is only 250gb. So how will I restore? Is there way to restore only system files and apps etc and not rest of extra stuff?
Before the migration starts you will get this screen. Just uncheck the user folders you do not want to move to get down to the size you need.

 

SandboxGeneral

Moderator emeritus
Sep 8, 2010
26,063
9,245
Detroit
And other than HDD there is no other thing that might be messing up like this, right? Because I think i will get SSD by Tuesday if I order today on Amazon. So want to check for other wrongs also.
Based on your description, it's very likely the HDD.
 

xp0z3d

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jun 18, 2012
122
2
Thanks guys for all the time and help. Will see if I encounter any other issues and if I have any more questions, will ask u. Thanks once more for answering the questions.
 

Bri in Mtl

macrumors member
May 29, 2013
85
4
Newbie question and sorry if I'm hijacking the thread but is it wise to backup a computer that is obviously having problems?
 

Weaselboy

Moderator
Staff member
Jan 23, 2005
30,174
9,853
California
Newbie question and sorry if I'm hijacking the thread but is it wise to backup a computer that is obviously having problems?
Well... I guess it is better than having no backup at all and risk losing everything.

That said, the ideal thing would be to set aside your current backup and make a new one on a second disk. This way you avoid having the corrupted data on the disk replicated onto the backup set, then restored to the new disk.
 
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