Become a MacRumors Supporter for $50/year with no ads, ability to filter front page stories, and private forums.

Mark200789

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 3, 2015
61
17
Running Catalina. I think this may be the symptom of an interrupted OS update installation. The machine is just plain shutting down during any kind of boot. The apple shows up and in the middle of the progress bar it just turns off. Recovery mode shuts down. Internet Recovery mode it shows the globe, asks for a wifi network, gets what it needs, starts actually entering the recovery app, shuts off. The only time it doesn't is when booted into safemode where it gets to the user select screen. But after entering the password in thinks a bit and then shuts off. I am able to enter target disk mode and moved all my files off. I did a disk repair with no results. I erased the partitions with no results. I reset all the SMCs and NVRAMs. What's left for me to do?
 

Rodan52

macrumors 6502
You may have to completely erase the internal drive and start from scratch. I don't know which model MBA you are using but I assume it's compatible with Catalina? Has it worked at all since you attempted to install Catalina? Was it working normally before you attempted to install Catalina?
 
  • Like
Reactions: Mark200789

chscag

macrumors 601
Feb 17, 2008
4,622
1,946
Fort Worth, Texas
A machine shutting down like that is very likely due to a hardware problem not software or installing macOS. The shut down could be caused by overheating, failing power supply, failing SSD, or even a bad logic board. Which MacBook Air do you have?
 
  • Like
Reactions: Mark200789

Audit13

macrumors 604
Apr 19, 2017
6,832
1,816
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
This happens with or without charger attached?

I have a MacBook Pro 13" 2014 that does exactly the same thing except it will eventually finish booting and operate until the next time it is powered up.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Mark200789

Mark200789

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 3, 2015
61
17
Thanks for all the suggestions. Here's the status so far: The next morning when I was about to try to install the OS from a thumb drive the machine wouldn't turn on at all. Dead. I removed the battery out of desperation and plugged it in and it came back to life again. Installed the OS. Everything is fine. I ordered a new battery and installed it and it's dead again. Will not turn on or show a charge stat on the plug LED. So the machine is fine, the battery is fine, but the communication between the two is bad somehow. I'd really like to have a battery because I know the kid will be unplugging the magsafe without realizing it constantly and it will shut off taking all her work with it.
 

Mark200789

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 3, 2015
61
17
Is it possible that there is a problem with the MagSafe I/O board?
There could be, but it's not a separate board on the Air that I know of. It's all one board. No way to test without spending a lot on a new board.
 

Audit13

macrumors 604
Apr 19, 2017
6,832
1,816
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
There could be, but it's not a separate board on the Air that I know of. It's all one board. No way to test without spending a lot on a new board.
It is a separate board. The I/O board from a mid-2013 to 2017 will work.

When you connect the charger, does the LED come on?
 

Attachments

  • Screenshot 2020-03-20 at 2.25.17 PM.png
    Screenshot 2020-03-20 at 2.25.17 PM.png
    579.2 KB · Views: 276
Last edited:

Mark200789

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 3, 2015
61
17
It is a separate board. The I/O board from a mid-2013 to 2017 will work.

That's interesting... And they're only $17. Is there a way to test this before I buy just to cut down on wait times?
 

Mark200789

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 3, 2015
61
17
I saw in another thread that you know a lot about upgrading the logic board in this machine. Will 2013-2017 lobos fit in a mid-2012 machine? It looks like it would work to me just looking at the size and shape.
 

Audit13

macrumors 604
Apr 19, 2017
6,832
1,816
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
I saw in another thread that you know a lot about upgrading the logic board in this machine. Will 2013-2017 lobos fit in a mid-2012 machine? It looks like it would work to me just looking at the size and shape.
Although the 2012 board looks similar, the WiFi card is rotated 180 degrees and the camera cable on the 2013-2017 is right beside the logic board connector for the I/O magsafe board. For the 2012, the camera cable connects to the Magsafe I/O board.
 

Mark200789

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 3, 2015
61
17
Ok, another update. It seems to me that the power button is the problem and only working intermittently. I managed to turn on the machine on random chance with the battery connected. I then restarted the machine in target disk mode. When I was done I couldn’t turn the machine off. I ran the battery down until it shut off, charged it for a bit and now it won’t turn on again, but it is definitely charging as the light is on.
 

Audit13

macrumors 604
Apr 19, 2017
6,832
1,816
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
The MacBook air power button runs through the keyboard. Try this: disconnect the keyboard but not the trackpad, use the two pins on the logic board to boot the machine. Use a USB keyboard, shut down, touch the start up pins again. If this works repeatedly, you probably need a new keyboard.
 

Arth Joshi

macrumors newbie
Jul 26, 2020
2
1
Hey were you ever able to solve this issue? I’m having the same problem right now and would love to hear a solution. I’ve also tried to reset everything to no avail. I even tried reinstalling macOS Catalina using a USB drive but it keeps dying half way through.
 

Dipali Akbari

macrumors newbie
Sep 25, 2020
1
0
Hey were you ever able to solve this issue? I’m having the same problem right now and would love to hear a solution. I’ve also tried to reset everything to no avail. I even tried reinstalling macOS Catalina using a USB drive but it keeps dying half way through.

Are you able to fix this issue? I am finding the same issue... Tried almost all possible ways.
 

Mark200789

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 3, 2015
61
17
I could not. I replaced the io board and the battery to no avail. It could be the keyboard, but that’s too much work to replace. It could also be the mobo, which is expensive. So I just gave up.
 

Arth Joshi

macrumors newbie
Jul 26, 2020
2
1
Are you able to fix this issue? I am finding the same issue... Tried almost all possible ways.

Hey for me it was the keyboard. You can find a replacement keyboard on eBay for about $25. The installation is a little tedious but not too hard. There are videos on YouTube how to do it. Let me know if you need help!
 
  • Like
Reactions: Mark200789

jycomputerservices

macrumors newbie
Feb 24, 2021
1
0
Oh, wow. I spent couple hours trying to figure it out. Replaced charger, battery, and power supply unit from another laptop. Tried all sorts of resets, system recovery, safe mode, etc. The problem was indeed the keyboard. I don't see any physical issues with the button, so i guess will have to replace the keyboard/palmrest. Thank you for suggestions!
 
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.