hard drive dead, need an answer quick :)

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Kurri, Apr 26, 2013.

  1. Kurri macrumors 6502

    Mar 6, 2009
    so the hard drive is dead on my wifes macbook pro. took it to the genius bar, they told me i needed a new hard drive. i have a place that will install and replace it. the question i have is, they also want to charge me $90 to install lion on the hard drive. Doesnt mac genius bar do this for free? shouldnt I only get the hard drive replaced and not the operating system? I have to call them back today to let them know. i was thinking of only doing the hard drive and taking the mac to the genius people to re-install lion for us if its free. save $90
  2. blevins321 macrumors 68030

    Dec 24, 2010
    Winnipeg, MB
    Does the MBP support Internet Recovery for your model? If so you can download and install it yourself.
  3. Kurri thread starter macrumors 6502

    Mar 6, 2009
    hmmmm i have no idea. its 3 years old if that means anything. just missed out on apple care for this guy
  4. Weaselboy Moderator


    Staff Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    Maybe. 2010+ portables got a firmware upgrade that added Internet Recovery, so you may have it.

    Do you have it there with you? Hold command-r when you boot and see if you get a recovery screen. You can format the new drive and install the OS for Apple's servers from that screen.

    Do you have a Time Machine backup on an external disk? If you do, and you were on Lion 10.7.2 or better, you can option key boot to the TM backup and just restore the OS and all your apps/data from there. Much better than a 4.7GB DL form Apple.
  5. Kurri thread starter macrumors 6502

    Mar 6, 2009
    Dont have it with me. have to call the place back to tell them if i want them to install mountain lion on it for me for $90.

    She has no backup. Bought her a 1TB drive and SHE NEVER BACKED IT UP. i had no idea. she learned a valuable lesson, but so did it, my wife wont do it herself so i better back it up for her next time.

    I think i will just go pick it up from him after the hd is installed. I am guessing if i have any problem getting mt lion on it the genius bar will be able to help?????
  6. xlii macrumors 68000


    Sep 19, 2006
    Millis, Massachusetts
    Replacing the hard drive on a 3 year old mbp is easy and should take about 10 minutes if you go slow and careful. The manual even tells you what tools you need. The tools cost about 5 dollars and can be gotten at most hardware stores like lowes or home depot. If memory serves (I have a 2009 mbp) the tools were a P00 phillips and a T6 Torx drivers... but you need to check.

    You can buy a 2.5" drive at either amazon or new egg and get the exact size and quality.

    Replacing the drive is so easy... save yourself that 90 dollars.

    For reinstalling the os you can try internet recovery or just put the osx cd that came with the machine to install or use your backup disk.
  7. Weaselboy Moderator


    Staff Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    I don't know if the Apple Store will actually do this for you for free. I kind of doubt it. I know they will let you use their HS Internet access to do it yourself.

    If the machine does not have Internet Recovery, there is another option if you have access to another Mac. Just pop a 1GB or larger USB key into any Mac, then run this Apple utility to make a recovery USB key. Then option key boot to the USB key on the MBP. From the recovery screen that comes up start Disk Utility then format the new drive as Mac OS Extended. Then quit disk util and click "install OS". This will take a bit as the 4.7GB OS gets downloaded from Apple's servers. It is really very easy to do.
  8. Kurri thread starter macrumors 6502

    Mar 6, 2009
    great, i will do this as a worst case scenario. thanks for all the answers guys, i appreciate it.
  9. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    Just wondering -- did the hard drive really "go bad", or -- is it just no longer bootable?

    Just because the drive won't boot the Mac, doesn't mean all the files on the drive are lost.
    (to put it another way, so long as the drive hasn't had a "hardware failure" -- won't spin, etc. -- at least some files may be recoverable)

    It's possible one or more essential files that are required to boot have been corrupted, etc. Your wife's data files may still be "there", and if they are, chances are you can get them back.

    Do you still have the original drive?

    If so, once you get a replacement drive inside, you might still be able to "mount the old drive" using an external device. If it will mount on the desktop, you can grab what you need from it and copy the files to the new internal.

    I would highly recommend that you consider getting a gadget called a "USB docking station" to assist with this.

    To see what's available, go to a site like amazon.com and in the search box, enter:
    "USB SATA dock"
    There will be many hits -- just pick one you like that's cheap.

    These things are easy as pie to use, and you can even boot from them. Did I also mention that they are CHEAP?

    Also, if you've read this far, keep reading.

    You may not even need to take the MacBook anywhere. Is the hard drive inside easily accessible? If you go to a place like iFixit.com, you will find detailed illustrations of how to do it yourself. You WILL need the right tools (get the EXACT SIZE screwdrivers, etc.). With the right tools, replacing the internal drive is a clean and easy job on modern Macs.

    - you buy a new drive on your own, and
    - you get a USB/SATA dock, and
    - you use internet restore to put a fresh copy of the os on the "docked drive", and
    - you can then get booted externally, then…
    … you can swap drives, have a working drive in the MacBook with a clean system on it, and see if the old drive will mount in the USB dock.
  10. satcomer, Apr 28, 2013
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2013

    satcomer macrumors 603


    Feb 19, 2008
    The Finger Lakes Region
    How old is the MPP? Did you know there are install videos and web tear down blogs to guide your own install? I would go with an SSD but just remember to format it for OS X before the install.

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