Help! My MBP won't boot up

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Texas_Toast, Aug 2, 2016.

  1. Texas_Toast macrumors 6502

    Texas_Toast

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2016
    Location:
    Texas
    #1
    My computer has been acting stranger and stranger lately, and I am certain that all of this Texas sun has fried the internals on my old MBP.

    Last night I started up my MBP w El Capitan, and after logging in, I got a grey screen with a large apple on it and that is it. My MBP wouldn't finish booting up.

    After 5 minutes, I did a hard shut down and tried logging in to my admin account - thinking I needed to rebuild permissions. Same issue.

    Fortunately I have a clone from a month and a half ago that I am using to type this plea for help.

    Unfortunately, I have been waiting on a new HDD to come in the mail, and it took me all week to burn the new one in, and I was going to do a clone of my MBP today, until it died last night.

    My #1 priority it to get all of my data backed up from my internal HDD, but I don't know how to do that since I am running on an external HDD now.

    Why does this sh*t always happen right before you do a backup?!

    Oh, one more thing...

    For now, I can see all of my data on my internal HDD, which is good. I am thinking that El Capitan - maybe due to failing hardware - died on me last night - but at least for now my data is still there.

    Please help!!!
     
  2. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #2
    It does sound like either your drive died, or you have a bad drive cable.

    You can boot to the external then attach another external and format it.... then use Disk Utility to restore the broken internal partition to a partition on the second external drive. With the drive compromised, this may or may not work.

    In my example I selected Other as the destination then selected Restore in the edit menu, then select Backup as the source. So this would in effect clone Backup to Other in my example.

    Screen Shot 2016-08-02 at 9.14.31 AM.png
     
  3. Texas_Toast thread starter macrumors 6502

    Texas_Toast

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2016
    Location:
    Texas
    #3
    Actually I think the internals on my MBP are fading quickly. For example, often when I hit the power button in the morning, my laptop won't come on. I have to press the button really hard a second time or hold it down for 10 secnds to get it to boot up. Not normal.

    My monitor is pretty dim and yet it is set on max. Not normal.

    Certain keys on my keyboard seem to be failing. Normal for Apple products.

    The rubber feet on my MBP crumbled, and now there are 4 holes into my MBP! Normal for Apple products.

    And so on and so forth.

    Anyway, if my HDD was not working, I wouldn't be able to see data on it.


    I was wondering about this... So you are saying if I boot up from my external clone copy from June, that once it is booted up, my MBP has loaded everything into RAM??

    And if I unplug that external HDD, it won't crash my computer?

    I do have CCC, and ideally would like to clone my internal HDD onto this newly tested and formatted blank external drive.

    Can I do that? (Assuming I can disconnect the HDD I booted from and then insert the blank HDD into my external case.)

    Also, if I do as described above, can I tell CCC to clone my internal HDD onto a blank external HDD when in fact I booted from a clone originally in my external case if you follow me?
     
  4. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #4
    No... once you boot to the external you will need to keep it attached to run the Mac. What I am saying is attach a second external then copy the internal to the second external while running off the first external.

    I was explaining how to do this with Disk Utility, but if you already have CCC, it will do the same thing so you can just use that.
     
  5. Texas_Toast thread starter macrumors 6502

    Texas_Toast

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2016
    Location:
    Texas
    #5
    I must be behind the times or still not understanding you.

    The external enclosure that I am using has two USB pigs tails on one end that plug into my MBP and then one USB that plugs into the case. The point being that I have no way to plug in another external enclosure since it takes two USB ports and all I have are two USB ports.

    How can I get around that?
    --- Post Merged, Aug 2, 2016 ---
    Also, even if I am able to boot from my backup clone, and then clone my internal HDD onto a blank external HDD, isn't it likely that will just create a clone of my problems on the new blank drive?

    (I am thinking that El Capitan is the problem here. The last time I tried boot up from my internal HDD, I was presented with avatars for my two accounts, but not field to enter my password?!)
     
  6. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #6
    Ah I see... that is unusual. Most USB enclosures only use one USB cable.

    Some (like yours) draw too much power for one USB cable, so they use one cable to power the enclosure over USB and the other to move data. To do this you are going to need two enclosures that can run on one cable each.
     
  7. Texas_Toast thread starter macrumors 6502

    Texas_Toast

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2016
    Location:
    Texas
    #7
    But the enclosure is just an aluminum case and a cable... If there is an issue of something drawing too much power, it would have to the SATA HDD.

    I just got a new headset this weekend, and I recall it saying something like, "Your laptop has two USB ports and one of them is for power. Use that one, because if you use the non-power USB port things won't work."

    To be clear, I have a 13" Mid-2012 MBP. Was there such a thing as a power-USB port and a non-power USB port back then?
     
  8. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #8
    I'm guessing you have a 3.5" disk and 3.5" enclosure. Most of those pull too much power to be run off one USB port, so they have an external power supply like the one in this photo. So the one USB cable is for data only and the power supply plugs into the wall. What you have is a enclosure that lacks this power supply and uses a second USB cable to supply power.

    Screen Shot 2016-08-02 at 10.20.52 AM.png

    Most 2.5" inch drives and enclosures do not use as much power so they can be run off just one USB port and no power supply.

    On a MacBook there is no such thing as a data vs. power USB port. All USB ports can provide power and data. What some laptops have is say two USB ports where one might be capable of providing a little more power than the other... that might be what you are thinking of.
     
  9. Texas_Toast thread starter macrumors 6502

    Texas_Toast

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2016
    Location:
    Texas
    #9
    No, it is for 2.5" drives. It looks similar to this one...
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=9SIA1N834G9524

    So I should be able to run two of these off of my two USB ports with 2.5" HDDs with no issues?
    --- Post Merged, Aug 2, 2016 ---
    To confirm, will this work as a way to backup my MBP...

    Plug in external case #1 which has a backup clone of my MBP and boot from that. Then, plug in external case #2 with a blank HDD. Then tell CCC to make a clone of my internal HDD - which I did not boot from - and place the backup clone onto my new blank HDD located in external case #2.

    Is that possible?
     
  10. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #10
    That is unusual to have the two USB requirement for a 2.5" inch drive. Try it with just one cable connected to the MacBook and the other not connected and see if it works. The MacBook may be able to provide enough power for it to run.

    Yep... that is exactly what I am suggesting.
     
  11. Texas_Toast thread starter macrumors 6502

    Texas_Toast

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2016
    Location:
    Texas
    #11
    First off, thank you Weaselboy for all of your help so far today!

    My life is Murphy's Law, and it is so upsetting that all of this happened the night before I went to do an updated clone... (Yeah, I could have done one sooner, but the logic was that I didn't want to do a new clone over my old clone on the one HDD I had for backups.)

    Now that I have two external HDDs, I can do better backups by rotating them.

    Of course that doesn't help me today... :(
    --- Post Merged, Aug 2, 2016 ---
    Weaselboy, what is the least disruptive way to get me back to where I was at before things blew up last night?

    Even if I can get another external enclosure, I fear that all I will be doing is creating a clone of a messed up version of El Capitan.

    I guess what I am asking is "What is the easiest way to capture all of my data on my corrupted HDD so that if I have to rebuild this machine or if I buy a new one, that I won't lose any data?"

    Obviously this is a piece of cake when youc lone your entire (working) HDD.

    I need to make sure I don't lose any data - and I have A LOT!!

    I am not sure where to look for all of my data!

    - All of the data in Documents - that's easy to grab, I suppose
    - What about all of my browser bookmarks?
    - What about Application Preferences - I run some trickier software
    - I have config files for Apache and PHP and I forget where they are all at
    - I am probably forgetting lots of other things
     
  12. JohnDS macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2015
    #12
    You can solve the problem of not having enough USB ports by buying a POWERED USB hub.
     
  13. grahamperrin macrumors 601

    grahamperrin

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2007
    #13
    For what it's worth: I have a couple of mobile USB hard disk drives with the forked cable arrangement, and I have seen plenty of others. Maybe because they were routinely sold over the counter by a nearby vendor.

    It probably will work.

    In my experience it's rare to find a requirement for the additional power flylead and in edge cases, the additional power connection may cause things to be less reliable.

    Postscript: some of those troublesome edge cases involve a powered hub.
     
  14. Texas_Toast thread starter macrumors 6502

    Texas_Toast

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2016
    Location:
    Texas
    #14
    Any thoughts on this???
     
  15. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #15
    I would still just go with another clone. If the clone can't copy things over, it is likely you won't be able to manually copy that data over anyway, so you have nothing to lose.
     
  16. Texas_Toast thread starter macrumors 6502

    Texas_Toast

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2016
    Location:
    Texas
    #16
    You are correct in that it is probably better to just clone my internal HDD and then I have a recent backup.

    But if El Capitan is corrupted, then won't I have the same issue on that drive? In other words, if I clone my internal HDD, I will indeed have an up to date backup, but I still won't have a usable laptop, right?
     
  17. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #17
    Yes... quit possibly. But what I am thinking is if that happens you can just fresh install El Capitan then manually move your data over from the clone. Either way you are no worse off making the clone.
     
  18. Texas_Toast thread starter macrumors 6502

    Texas_Toast

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2016
    Location:
    Texas
    #18
    Vague question, but where all is my data - beyond in the Documents folder?

    What types of data would I lose if I didn't go looking for it?

    Bookmarks is one thing I can think of.

    Like I said, I think there are a lot of plist and configuration settings and files that I would need to chase down.

    What else?
     
  19. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #19
    It is hard for me to answer, because I don't know what all you have installed on there and what data you have. But in general, most of your personal data would be in folder in your home users folders, like Documents, Music, and Pictures. Then app settings and all would be in the users Library folder.
     
  20. Texas_Toast thread starter macrumors 6502

    Texas_Toast

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2016
    Location:
    Texas
    #20
    My day is steadily going downhill.

    I should have yanked my internal HDD last night.

    I just got the following message after booting up using Command + R and trying to repair my troublesome HDD...
    Code:
    The partition map needs to be repaired because there's a problem with the EFI system partition's file system.
    
    And then I forget the sequence I got this...
    Code:
    Alert!
    Partition map repair failed while adjusting structures to fit current whole disk size.
    
    Did I just lose all of my data on this encrypted HDD??????

    If anyone knows how to help, I could REALLY use some help here before I lose a lot of precious data!!
     
  21. supermariofan25, Aug 2, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2016

    supermariofan25 macrumors regular

    supermariofan25

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    #21
    You should still be able to mount the OS X partition of that drive using disk utility, it will require you to input the password that you used to encrypt the drive, this can be done from Recovery. Once you managed to mount the drive, prepare to get comfortable with Terminal as that going to be your only friend from now on. In terminal you can use commands like 'cd' (used to navigate to a given directory e.g. cd /Volumes/insert-volume-name-here Note: if cd cannot find the directory then encase the entire path in quotations "") and 'ls' (lists all files and folders in current directory, use 'man ls' to see a manual from inside the terminal if you dont get the results out want) to navigate your way around folders and then use the 'cp' command to copy files from one place to another (See here for a nice tutorial)

    EDIT: Comment redacted about Finder in Recovery as it does not seem possible at this point.

    --- Post Merged, Aug 2, 2016 ---
    I would also aim to salvage your Home folder as that is where most programs store anything created by the user. It is very rare for a program to store your important works and documents anywhere other then the home folder.
     
  22. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #22
    The more you try and repair the drive like this, the less likely you are to recover any data at all. Just boot to recovery, unlock the drive in Disk Util then use Disk Util to restore the internal drive to another external drive. That is your best hope at this point.
     
  23. Texas_Toast thread starter macrumors 6502

    Texas_Toast

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2016
    Location:
    Texas
    #23
    supermariofan25,

    Sorry, but I didn't understand what you were advising. It seems like you left out several steps...
    --- Post Merged, Aug 3, 2016 ---
    Weaselboy, I will reply to your comments in a minute.

    First, here is an update...

    I think all of these issues were a result of my MacBook dying and not a HDD issue. Why do I say this? Well I have been doing lots of trial and error, and here is what I discovered just a little while ago...

    I cannot boot from any HDD mounted internally in my MBP. This morning I took my last good clone, and installed it in my MBP, with not other HDDs connected.

    My MBP got stuck on the grey apple screen.

    At first, I was like, "****, I just ruined my good clone!" But then I took it out of the case, and tried booting up to it in my external case, holding down Option while I hit the power button and it booted slow but fine and I can see everything. In fact, this is how I can talk to you now.

    I was hoping that was the issue, but it is never that easy!

    Next, I tried the same thing with my production/latest HDD. That is, I mounted the latest HDD into my case - with no other HDDs attached - and booted up using Option, and unfortunately I was stcuk on the grey apple screen again.

    That says to me that something is dreadfully wrong with this MBP, and it probably screwed up my production HDD. :(
    --- Post Merged, Aug 3, 2016 ---
    Because I am new to this, your instructions are unclear to me.

    Knowing what I just typed above, could you please walk me through step-by-step what I should do at this point to try and save my data?

    At this point, if I can just get to my data in Documents and quickly get it copied over to another HDD I will be happy!! (If I lose everything else, e.g. Applications, Preferences, Config files, then I can cope. But if I lose 6 weeks of data, I will cry like a baby!!!!)

    It is my belief that all of the data is still on my latest/production HDD, I just need to figure out how to get it. (BTW, my latest/production HDD is using Fileault2 full-disk encryption which makes all of this much trickier!!!)
     
  24. Texas_Toast thread starter macrumors 6502

    Texas_Toast

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2016
    Location:
    Texas
    #24
    It looks like I have to go drive an hour to Fry's to go buy a USB hub and another external case tonight after rush-hour tonight.

    Not exactly sure what to do after I hook up my 3 HDDs externally...

    From what was said above, and from what I have read online, it is unclear to me what is my best bet to recover the data on my original HDD.

    I sure could use some hand-holding about now...
     
  25. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #25
    I'm going to circle back around to my first post (#2 in the thread). If you can take the internal drive and put it in an external USB case, and all is well like you just described, then you have a bad internal drive cable. So you need to replace the cable then put your original internal drive back inside and all will be well.

    https://www.ifixit.com Sells the cables.
     

Share This Page