Installing Mac osX on erased HD

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by bcatwell, Nov 12, 2011.

  1. bcatwell macrumors newbie

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    Nov 12, 2011
    #1
    Hi Everybody,
    Let me start by thanking you in advance for your help and apologizing re-posting an already popular posting. My issues are a little different than previous posters.

    In the process of diagnosing a bad logic board I completely erased my MacBook hard drive. (if you're interested in the details that lead to that, I'll be happy to elaborate later.) Subsequently, I replaced the logic board and I am now having trouble re-installing OS.

    At first, I would get the "flashing ?" and the computer would spin the install disk and spit it out after about 30 seconds. I tried holding down "c" at startup to no avail. Reset PRAM. Nothing. Tried holding down "OPTION" and had a slightly better result: the disk was still ejected, but I was left with a movable mouse icon (i.e. arrow).

    Is there anyway to install this OS on my blank HD at this point?

    NB: I'm not able to install remotely.

    Thanks again for any help.

    Best,
    Brad
     
  2. spacedrabbit macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2011
    #2
    uhmm... many ways. sounds like your superdrive is bad

    simplest but perhaps most time consuming would to take it to an apple store, they will image your drive via USB/Firewire or Ethernet

    alternative suggestion could be:

    target disk that macbook to another mac, install desired OS with optical drive of other macbook is one.
     
  3. iThinkergoiMac macrumors 68030

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    #3
    I agree that your optical drive may be bad, or you may have a corrupted install disc. It's also possible you didn't properly seat the optical drive connection. I'd check the disc in another Mac to make sure it's good and, if it is, re-seat your optical drive connection.
     
  4. M Quick macrumors 6502

    M Quick

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    Stockholm, Sweden
    #4
    Installing an OS on a completely erased HD shouldn't be a problem at all. So that's definitely not an issue.

    Try getting a USB flash drive and copy down OSX onto it and then boot up the computer with it and install it that way, this way you can make sure if your optical drive is the problem or not too.

    I'd look into reseating the memory modules and try them one at a time while installing via the optical drive too, just to make sure the memory modules aren't faulty, because if they are, they can make all sorts of problems, like the one you are experiencing. Always worth a try.
     
  5. iThinkergoiMac macrumors 68030

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    #5
    Poorly seated RAM CANNOT cause a flashing question mark. That only appears when the firmware can't find a valid system to boot from. Reseating the RAM is a good idea if you are trying to eliminate all possible issues, true, but it can't cause the issue OP is experiencing.
     
  6. M Quick macrumors 6502

    M Quick

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    #6

    Is that a bet? :)

    And the firmware is located, where (physical)? And via what way does the firmware reach the hard drive to read it's state?
    I would agree with you if the RAM wasn't such a vital hardware to start a computer with, but it is and i know that different failures of bad RAM modules are gonna give you different problems/errors.

    Ask me how i know..
     
  7. iThinkergoiMac macrumors 68030

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    #7
    So you personally have gotten the "valid OS not available" error from poorly seated RAM? I find that hard to believe. If you did, it was a fluke and your Mac was not acting the way it was designed.
     
  8. bcatwell thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 12, 2011
    #8
    So here is an update with further complications:

    I just bought a MacBook Air external Superdrive which the tech at the Apple Store assured me would work, even with a totally wiped HD. Plugged it in the USB but it will not respond.

    Any suggestions?

    Maybe I have another bad logic board?

    Brad
     
  9. n_baldwin macrumors newbie

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    Jul 23, 2002
    #9
    It seems you have been given some bad advice which has confused the situation further - the MacBook Air external SuperDrive will not work with the MacBook, it has a custom board inside which will only talk to the MacBook Air.
     
  10. bcatwell thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 12, 2011
    #10
    I hate hearing that! But thanks for the response. Is there an external cd drive I can purchase that my MacBook will recognize?
    Thanks
     
  11. n_baldwin macrumors newbie

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    Jul 23, 2002
    #11
    I believe any DVD external USB drive ought to be OK, except, unfortunately, the Air external.
     
  12. bcatwell thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #12
    So if I wanted to put this disk on a flash drive, say, from a PC, how would I do that? I'm having some trouble figuring that one out.
     
  13. M Quick macrumors 6502

    M Quick

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    #13
    I have no idea what experience level you have with computer hardware in general, so i'm not gonna judge you, but;

    Poorly seated RAM? No.
    A bad RAM module? Yes.
    Fluke? Yeah sure, a bad RAM module can, depending on how it have failed, create many different problems/flukes, probably more than you might think.
    If you understand how RAM modules communicate via the north bridge/mch (memory controller hub), you will also understand how it can affect the other hardware in the system when it has failed. Just saying..

    A poorly seated RAM module would not even boot up the system btw.




    You can, luckily mod your air superdrive so that it will work with any machine, you can get this part from ebay for about 5bucks and up. Google how to mod the air superdrive and you'll know how to go further with it, that is if you can't exchange it for your money back and you're stuck with it, or if you really want to keep it because of design reasons..
     
  14. bcatwell thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 12, 2011
    #14
    Not terribly interested in the design and I CAN return this drive. At least, that's what I was told (I was told a lot of things). So I will look for a MAC compatible external cd/dvd drive in the meantime. Thanks for the responses.
    Best,
     
  15. M Quick macrumors 6502

    M Quick

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    #15
    Then return it and get any other (non apple) external optical drive to go, it's funny how apple sells these optical drives that is locked to only work with a specific laptop, and i guess the price is above average for any other brand too, which is ridiculous imho. I've only tried branded (samsung and LG for example) external optical drives, and they have worked just fine, plug and play. Works on all laptops mac and windows pc's. And they are cheap too.
     
  16. bcatwell thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #16
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8G4 Safari/6533.18.5)

    It just occurs to me that getting my MacBook to recognize the external drive without any OS installed could be a problem.
     
  17. iThinkergoiMac macrumors 68030

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    #17
    Won't be an issue, firmware will take control of that. Think about it: if you boot an OS X install DVD from an external drive, did the OS on the internal drive ever load?
     
  18. bcatwell thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 12, 2011
    #18
    Touche. I'll post a followup once I find a cd drive that works. If you read above you know that the Air Superdrive failed.

    Thanks
     
  19. bcatwell thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 12, 2011
    #19
    I confess that things are damaged beyond my ability to repair. I have an LG Superdrive that is compatible with my Macbook, but I can't get the Start-up manager to work. Holding option delivers a arrow cursor to the screen as if there would be something to point to and click on, but no icons representing bootable drives.

    Guess my firmware is all messed up or something.
     

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