Macbook crashes on start-up

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by Geddenmark, Oct 12, 2009.

  1. Geddenmark macrumors newbie

    Oct 12, 2009

    I have a Macbook which crashes 5 seconds after starting up. After reading on several forums I decided to do a clean re-installation of OS X Leopard.
    When I had inserted the installation DVD and pressed the option key, the only icon that showed was the harddrive and not the installation DVD. This was really frustrating and even though I knew the Macbook would crash I decided to click the hardrive icon and start up normally. However the Macbook started up perfectly normal and ran smoothly for hours (10 seconds was the longest it had run for 1½ month) where I was able to salvage all of my data. All the time it ran as normal was while I still had the installation DVD in the the DVD-drive.
    After saving my data I accessed the installation DVD from within the running OS X and started the re-installation of OS X Leopard.
    The re-installation went perfectly normal and shotly after I had a Macbook with an all fresh and re-installed OS X. After this it functioned perfectly for hours but I hadn't removed the installation DVD from the drive. I thought that everything was now working and was really happy that I once again had my Macbook up and running. In the evening I ejected the installation DVD and turned off the Macbook.
    The next morning I turned it on all happy about it working again. However after 5 seconds it crashed. I was sooooo dissapointed. I tried to insert the installation DVD again, but it even crashed before reaching safe-mode.

    Please someone help me. I don't know how I can get my Macbook back to life and I really need it.

    P.S. At first I thought that the problem was overheating but after having it running flawless for hours yesterday, I have ruled out this problem.
  2. mrsir2009 macrumors 604


    Sep 17, 2009
    Melbourne, Australia
    Take it into Apple. I hope you still have Apple Care!

    By the way, have you used that install DVD on any other computers?
  3. Geddenmark thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 12, 2009
    Unfortunately I bought it directly from Apple online. This is pretty bad in Denmark where I'm from as there aren't any Apple stores, but only licensed Apple retailers who will usually charge $300 just for having a look at it.

    I don't have Apple Care but by law there is a 2 year warranty in Denmark. Of course this expired in May :)

    My own install DVD wouldn't work so I borrowed one from my friend who has used it before, and this was the one I used to make the clean re-installation
  4. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    I'd boot up in Safe Mode, then do a Repair Permissions with Disk Utility. After that, reboot. If that doesn't fix it, reboot in Safe Mode, then insert your Installer DVD and do the reinstall.
  5. Geddenmark thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 12, 2009
    Thanks for your reply. Will go home and try that.

    Do you think it is a harddrive issue?
  6. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    It could be. But you're a ways from diagnosing that. Try to boot in Safe Mode. If it boots, then you've narrowed the problem.
  7. Geddenmark thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 12, 2009
    Tried to start it in safe mode and ran Repair Permissions but the screen went black after running for 2 minutes. The only activity on the Macbook was the quiet sound from the fans (I think it was). Had to hold the power button down to turn it off. This is the way it has been during the entire period with problems.

    Now it starts up without a chime and with black screen and the only thing that indicates that it is on is a quiet sound from the fans. Usually I have to wait for 30 mins before I can start it up properly again.
  8. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    That is usually bad news. I'd check your RAM first, but you may have a logic board issue. Do a PRAM reset to see if that helps. Do you have another Mac? If so, it would be wise to pull the drive out of your MB and get it backed up if you haven't already.
  9. Geddenmark thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 12, 2009
    Ok, did the PRAM reset and started up the computer again. It ran for a few minutes so I decided to run Repair Permissions again but it crashed again.

    Got no clue what to do now.

    At least I already backed up data
  10. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    You need to check the RAM and hard drive. The hard drive can be checked by connecting it to another Mac and running Disk Repair from Disk Utility. The RAM can be checked by pulling one of the chips out on only running it with one chip (the odds that both are damaged is very, very low). If one causes system problems but the other doesn't, then you've isolated your problem.
  11. phas3 macrumors 65816

    Oct 5, 2008
    any update? have you installed anythign recently?
  12. Geddenmark thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 12, 2009
    @ Caveman: Don't I need all kind of special tools for extracting the RAM?
    Have plenty of friends with Macs but will have to by a firewire cable. Almost seems cheaper with a new Mac even though I don't feel like spending the money now.

    @ phas3: Think I did an Apple standard update 2 months ago (it's been pretty much down for 1½ month). Haven't installed any programs recently

    Thanks for all the help guys
  13. pcs are junk macrumors 65816

    Sep 28, 2009
    i think you should sell it on ebay as a spare parts mac. then use the money to buy another mac.
  14. Geddenmark thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 12, 2009
    Almost not worth the time doing that for a few $.

    Hate the fact that there aren't any Apple Stores in Denmark. In all of the countries where you have this, you can just go and ask a genious whereas Apple will charge you money for contacting them on the phone 90 days after purchase or you'll have to pay an official retailer loads of money just for looking at it. Costs for a repair will be added to that.

    It is incredible that a multinational company like Apple has such a different service level in diffrent countries. At least the Danish online shop should give a discount when puchasing the Mac for delivering at significantly worse service than in other countries, but that would be quite unlikely :)

    Really regret trying to find a solution for my Macbook as I had an offer through one of my friend's company last week to by a new Mac at half price. It ran out this friday and is not back before next year.
  15. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    No, the RAM is user-accessible at the battery compartment. You'll need a Phillips or torx driver, but that's it. Check for a video.

    I'd pull the drive. It's a 3 min job, especially if you're accessing the RAM anyway. Macsales has a video on that, too.
  16. Geddenmark thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 12, 2009
    Sorry for being away from this thread so long, but I had to get the tools for the job.

    I tried running each ram-block separately and the Macbook worked for 2 mins. before passing out.

    I removed the hard-drive as well and and put it back in place. This was before testing the rams and I had no problem accessing it for the 2 mins. it was running.

    So, I'm pretty much giving up now- Seems I have tried all options. Our computer support-guy at work said I could bring it to him so he could have a look, but he is only used to working with PC's and with all the steps we've been through I doubt that there is anything he can do.

    Got any last resort fixes Caveman?
  17. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    If you have access to an external USB2 hard drive that you can install the OS X on, then do that. You need to connect the drive, then boot holding the Option key down with the Installer DVD inserted. When it appears on the screen, release the Option key and select the DVD to start the initiation process.

    After selecting the language, choose Disk Utility from the Utilities menu, select the external drive (and not any partition that would be indented and below the drive name) and a new Partition tab should appear. Click on it, choose 1 volume from the pull-down, click the Options button and select GUID, then initialize the drive as HFS+ (OS X Extended with Journaling enabled). After initialization is done, quit Disk Utility and you should be returned to the installer. Run it and when done reboot.

    If the computer still fails after reboot, odds are that it's not your hard drive and is probably the logic board or RAM. If it runs fine, then you know its your hard drive.

Share This Page