I think my MacBook Pro is dead: any ideas?

seremela06

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 28, 2014
14
0
My MacBook Pro is a 13" early 2011 model and I've had it since May 2011. I've bought a 3rd party charging cable since my husband's idiot dog kept chewing them up and $80 is a lot every few months. A few months ago, she chewed this one too, but my dad does some electrical work and was able to strip the wires and fix them. A few weeks ago my laptop started turning off when I moved it if it was connected to the charger. However, this only happened a few times and I thought nothing more of it.

This afternoon it all ended. I picked it up and it was off (I had left it on) so I turned it back on. The fan was running really loud and the temp in the top bar said 0 degrees. The battery was also just a battery with an "x" in it even though it had been on the charger (and I've never seen the "x"). I closed everything and restarted it. When it came back on it said 48% battery but still said 0 degrees on the fan and it was still running loud. All the programs that I'd closed were back open and the cursor was frozen. I tried to force quit, but nothing worked and I ended up doing a hard shut down. I also noticed that when I put it back on the charger it didn't work. When I turned it around to try it from a different direction, I heard a crackle in the cable. I immediately unplugged it. When I started it back up it was the white screen with the apple and the circle scrolly thing, but there was also a progress bar at the bottom. The fan was still very loud. Once the progress bar filled up it just shut itself off. I can't start it in safe mode.

I've made an appointment at the Genius Bar for Saturday, but does anyone have any idea what could be happening. I had first called Geek Squad (because the nearest Apple Store is 2 hours away) and they said it sounded like a hardware issue. A quick Google search said it could be my hard drive (which I'd upgraded along with the RAM about a year ago) or a corrupt file. I'm hoping it's not a very expensive fix. Otherwise it might make more sense to just buy a new one. Any ideas?
 

GhettoMrBob

macrumors regular
May 21, 2014
192
49
Was the progress bar more "dotted" (like it's trying to recover from a shutdown) or was it more solid (like a firmware update)?

In any case, it sounds like some funky power management issue is going on with the SMC. Try an SMC reset: http://support.apple.com/kb/ht3964

It may be worth also doing a PRAM reset. Holding alt/option+command+P+R upon boot until it chimes for the second time.

One last idea (after you've attempted the others): hold down the alt/option key and see if you can't boot into the recovery partition.
 

seremela06

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 28, 2014
14
0
Was the progress bar more "dotted" (like it's trying to recover from a shutdown) or was it more solid (like a firmware update)?

In any case, it sounds like some funky power management issue is going on with the SMC. Try an SMC reset: http://support.apple.com/kb/ht3964

It may be worth also doing a PRAM reset. Holding alt/option+command+P+R upon boot until it chimes for the second time.

One last idea (after you've attempted the others): hold down the alt/option key and see if you can't boot into the recovery partition.
The bar was solid white and slowly changed to solid grey. I was able to erase the drive and reinstall OS X. It's installing now but the fan is still really loud. I'll try an SMC reset if this works.
 

coldwaves

macrumors 6502
May 30, 2011
361
174
My MacBook Pro is a 13" early 2011 model and I've had it since May 2011. I've bought a 3rd party charging cable since my husband's idiot dog kept chewing them up and $80 is a lot every few months. A few months ago, she chewed this one too, but my dad does some electrical work and was able to strip the wires and fix them. A few weeks ago my laptop started turning off when I moved it if it was connected to the charger. However, this only happened a few times and I thought nothing more of it.

This afternoon it all ended. I picked it up and it was off (I had left it on) so I turned it back on. The fan was running really loud and the temp in the top bar said 0 degrees. The battery was also just a battery with an "x" in it even though it had been on the charger (and I've never seen the "x"). I closed everything and restarted it. When it came back on it said 48% battery but still said 0 degrees on the fan and it was still running loud. All the programs that I'd closed were back open and the cursor was frozen. I tried to force quit, but nothing worked and I ended up doing a hard shut down. I also noticed that when I put it back on the charger it didn't work. When I turned it around to try it from a different direction, I heard a crackle in the cable. I immediately unplugged it. When I started it back up it was the white screen with the apple and the circle scrolly thing, but there was also a progress bar at the bottom. The fan was still very loud. Once the progress bar filled up it just shut itself off. I can't start it in safe mode.

I've made an appointment at the Genius Bar for Saturday, but does anyone have any idea what could be happening. I had first called Geek Squad (because the nearest Apple Store is 2 hours away) and they said it sounded like a hardware issue. A quick Google search said it could be my hard drive (which I'd upgraded along with the RAM about a year ago) or a corrupt file. I'm hoping it's not a very expensive fix. Otherwise it might make more sense to just buy a new one. Any ideas?
Try SMC reset. That might solve the fan issue. You can also do a Apple Hardware Test. I think for the 2011 model, you need to use the CD coming with the computer to do that.
 

seremela06

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 28, 2014
14
0
Try SMC reset. That might solve the fan issue. You can also do a Apple Hardware Test. I think for the 2011 model, you need to use the CD coming with the computer to do that.
I couldn't do the SMC reset because it wouldn't come on at all. Just the progress bar then it shut off. I just erased the hard drive and reinstalled OS X so once that finishes we'll see if it comes on...
 

GhettoMrBob

macrumors regular
May 21, 2014
192
49
I couldn't do the SMC reset because it wouldn't come on at all. Just the progress bar then it shut off. I just erased the hard drive and reinstalled OS X so once that finishes we'll see if it comes on...
The SMC reset should be independent of the unit booting to the hard drive or not. In fact, the computer has to be off in order to do it.
 

seremela06

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 28, 2014
14
0
The SMC reset should be independent of the unit booting to the hard drive or not. In fact, the computer has to be off in order to do it.
I was able to do the SMC reset and now everything is working. I just have to go get a new charger...
 

seremela06

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 28, 2014
14
0
Glad to hear! Post an update when you get that charger, I'm curious to see how it holds up.
Will do. I wish I hadn't had to reset the hard drive but some friends of mine are pretty sure that it was a corrupted file since it worked afterwards. What do you think? Hopefully everything holds up. It's not a very old computer.
 

GhettoMrBob

macrumors regular
May 21, 2014
192
49
Will do. I wish I hadn't had to reset the hard drive but some friends of mine are pretty sure that it was a corrupted file since it worked afterwards. What do you think? Hopefully everything holds up. It's not a very old computer.
Well being that the SMC reset helped out it could've been a combination of SMC acting goofy and filesystem corruption. Either way, I'd think it would be okay now with a fresh install and SMC reset.
 

seremela06

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 28, 2014
14
0
Well being that the SMC reset helped out it could've been a combination of SMC acting goofy and filesystem corruption. Either way, I'd think it would be okay now with a fresh install and SMC reset.
It worked for about a day. Now I don't know what to do. Everything was okay yesterday and then tonight I was online and suddenly the cursor started flying all over the screen, opening tabs, apps, creating new folders, etc. My brother was able to turn off the trackpad finally and that made it stop. Now I'm using a USB mouse but there's clearly something wrong and I have no idea what the hell. Luckily I never cancelled my Genius appointment for tomorrow morning. Any ideas?
 

cookiesnfooty

macrumors 6502
Jul 1, 2009
421
11
Harrogate
It worked for about a day. Now I don't know what to do. Everything was okay yesterday and then tonight I was online and suddenly the cursor started flying all over the screen, opening tabs, apps, creating new folders, etc. My brother was able to turn off the trackpad finally and that made it stop. Now I'm using a USB mouse but there's clearly something wrong and I have no idea what the hell. Luckily I never cancelled my Genius appointment for tomorrow morning. Any ideas?
Are you still using the old broken charger? If so stop before you do more damage and carry out the genius appointment :)
 
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