Is my MBP dying?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by 81Tiger04, Jan 18, 2014.

  1. 81Tiger04 macrumors 6502

    Aug 11, 2009
    I have a mid-2010 MBP ... In the last several months or so, I've started to notice the following issues:

    - Icons in the dock bounce for a while before the program finally opens.
    - Programs seem to take longer than they used to in order to open.
    - When they do open, there seem to be delayed reactions between a mouse click and the action.
    - Occasionally, lines on the video screen get messed up. It's similar to when your TV might screw up for a few seconds, but this doesn't go away until I reset the MBP.

    What might be the issues? What can I do to fix them?

    500 GB SATA Disk - 104GB Free
    1067 MHz DDR3 - 2GB x 2GB
  2. drewsof07 macrumors 68000


    Oct 30, 2006
    Sounds like you could use a fresh install of OS X first of all. Would also recommend doing a disk verify/repair to make sure there are no bad sectors. That would probably help with the slowness. If you can afford to swap that HD for an SSD, it really feels like a new computer. :)

    Could you describe the video artifacts a little better? Or provide a picture?

    Attached Files:

  3. yjchua95 macrumors 604

    Apr 23, 2011
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    Get an SSD, then watch your Mac magically get so much faster.
  4. jomirrivera macrumors 6502

    Mar 15, 2011
    Upgrade your ram to 8gb, get an SSD, and do some cleanup in your drive and get rid of everything you dont need and your machine will fly again.
  5. simon48 macrumors 65816


    Sep 1, 2010
    I'm going to combine the previous posts. :p

    Do a fresh install on an SSD.
  6. 81Tiger04 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Aug 11, 2009
    Sorry guys, got busy and haven't had a chance to reply.

    In response to the SSD, where would I go for one and what would you recommend??

    Same question as above for RAM?

    As for the video aspect, I'll post a screenshot the next time it occurs.
  7. thekev macrumors 604


    Aug 5, 2010
    Read the OP. If the OS and apps are the same, yet their behavior changed in the last several months with the same specs it ran before, that isn't an upgrade issue. A need to upgrade would be if he moved to newer software versions that are more resource intensive, yet that wasn't established. It also wouldn't cause the video corruption issues.

    The lines are disturbing. If you lose video or experience any freezes, I would have it checked out. They did offer extended warranty service on the 2010s due to some graphics problems. Someone pointed that out to me recently. It could still be software. A reinstall of the OS might be prudent. Do you hear a lot of hard drive noise when the dock items bounce? Also are you using the same old software? If you made a significant change in OS and application versions, I might be inclined to agree with the other two. It's not not likely to be the case if your usage hasn't changed over the last few months compared to before that period. SSDs do launch things faster. Ram can make access to loaded items appear more snappy. Neither explains a change in behavior with the same exact software versions and usage patterns.
  8. 81Tiger04 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Aug 11, 2009
    I'll get an Apple Genius to check out the video issue. It doesn't happen all of the time, every day or even week but it has happened several times. Are they going to be able to determine if there is a problem even if it doesn't replicate while they have it?

    As for the OS ... When you suggest a reinstall of the OS, are you suggesting the original disks for Mountain Lion? Or a digital installation for Maverics? By the way, I got Maverics the day it came out, could this be the "significant change in OS and application versions" you talked about?
  9. drewsof07 macrumors 68000


    Oct 30, 2006
    Take a picture the next time it happens and show the genius. Usually they can diagnose based on the colors/patterns. If it is a GPU issue, it will not appear in a screen shot, you'll have to capture it with your phone/camera.

    Just a fresh install of Mavericks should do. But the SSD route would be better. It seems like the Samsung 840 is the most popular around here, but there are excellent options from Crucial, Corsair, OWC and Kingston.
  10. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    I have the mid-2010 MBPro myself.

    As another poster above mentioned, it wouldn't hurt to bring it to an Apple Store Genius Bar and have them take a look at it.

    It might just be the hard drive having problems. If that's the case, you can easily replace the hard drive with a new one, and be "back in business".

    In fact, replacing the hard drive on the mid-2010 model is so easy there's no reason why you shouldn't do it yourself.
    You can find an illustrated tutorial on
    IMPORTANT! You MUST have THE RIGHT TOOLS to do the job (screwdrivers, etc.). The tutorial tells you what you need. Don't attempt the job without the proper tools. (One is a Phillips "00" screwdriver you can pick up at any hardware store. I think you also need a "TORX" driver, but don't recall the proper size).

    Of course, if you're going to replace the drive, you should probably buy an SSD -- the speed difference will be astounding. Don't spend lots of $$$ for too much capacity. 128gb to 256gb should be "enough" for a MacBook with a few years on it. Personally, I would just buy a 128gb drive and be done with it.

    I would also suggest you buy something like this:
    You can use it to "prep" the new drive BEFORE you "do the drive swap" on the MBPro.

    I'd suggest you do a completely "fresh install" of the OS onto the new drive.
    Then use Migration Assistant to bring over applications, accounts, data, etc.
    Then, do a "test boot" by restarting. Hold down the option key until the startup manager appears, then select the external (new) drive with the pointer and hit return. If it's a good install, the Mac should boot from the external drive.

    Once the old drive is out, you might try putting it into the enclosure and re-initializing it -- may bring the old drive "back to life".
  11. 81Tiger04 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Aug 11, 2009
    Thanks for the reply.

    I don't mind at all doing a HD replace myself. It actually sounds fun. Where would I start to buy a SSD? Also, I would be replacing a 500GB so I'm assuming I would need a 256GB SSD?

    Would I also benefit from upgrading to 8GB RAM?

    In order to do the OSX "fresh install", what steps do I take? Do I just use the Time Capsule backup? And do I do that after installing the new SSD?
  12. Brian Y macrumors 68040

    Oct 21, 2012
  13. DarthVader! macrumors member


    Oct 3, 2013
    Benefits is that OSX is less likely to swap its ram to disk if its starts to run low on memory, giving you the appearance of performance increase.

    I'd say haven multiple apps open at any one time will certainly benefit from more memory and given the cost of ram, I'd say its a nice way to boost performance for short money.
  14. 81Tiger04 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Aug 11, 2009
    So my Genius appointment is in the morning. Just so that I'm prepared, what types of "repairs" would i be best doing on my own? And which would I be best letting them take care of??
  15. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    The only repairs you should do are RAM replacement, HDD replacement or perhaps a screen replacement. If your motherboard has gone bad, you're better off buying a new computer (unless you're under warranty or the issue is covered).
  16. 81Tiger04 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Aug 11, 2009
    Nice and easy. Just out of curiosity, what should I expect to pay for a HD to replace my 500GB? To go from 4GB RAM to 8GB?
  17. heisenberg123 macrumors 603


    Oct 31, 2010
    Hamilton, Ontario
    what size SSD are you interested in?
  18. l.a.rossmann macrumors 65816


    May 15, 2009
    Use something like ddrescue, try copying your drive to /dev/null with the -a 51200 command at the line, which will tell it to skip over sections it cannot copy off at at least 51200 sectors per second.

    How much does it skip? How far does rescued lag behind IOPS?

    Sounds like a dying drive or dying hard drive cable. The 821-0814 in there is a real POS.
  19. 53kyle macrumors 65816


    Mar 27, 2012
    Sebastopol, CA
    First of all, get an SSD. Second, if the artifacts are just in things like shadows under windows or other UI elements, and they move when you move the window they are on, AND you have a 15 or 17 inch MBP, this is a known issue with mavericks where the integrated graphics are buggy. This can be fixed by turning off auto graphics switching in the energy saving preferences. The downside is that you will lose some battery life. If you have a 13 inch MBP, ignore this post, except for the part where I said get an SSD.
  20. AppleFanatic10 macrumors 68030


    Nov 2, 2010
    Encino, CA
    I don't have a MBP, so excuse me for asking. If you turn off the auto graphics switching option, why would that decrease battery life? I always thought when you turn off options like that it would increase the battery life.
  21. 53kyle macrumors 65816


    Mar 27, 2012
    Sebastopol, CA
    When you turn off the automatic graphics switching, it will default to the dedicated GPU, which uses more power than integrated graphics.
  22. Wuiffi macrumors 6502a


    Oct 6, 2011
    if your artifacts look anything like this, booting into recovery and checking/fixing the disk fixed it for me.
  23. Intelligent macrumors 6502a


    Aug 7, 2013

    Does sound like a hard drive problem, maybe you should reinstall your os. Get a sad.

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