Macbook Pro is very, very slow to boot

Discussion in 'macOS High Sierra (10.13)' started by Nicola-J, Oct 24, 2018.

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  1. Nicola-J macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 25, 2016
    #1
    Hi all,
    I've just bought a pre-owned Macbook Pro (late 2011).
    Everything has been wiped and there's a clean install of High Sierra 10.13.6 on.
    It's very, very slow to start. At first I thought this was because it was a new account and new OS install, however it's actually taking longer and longer to start each time rather than starting to become quicker.

    Today, after 37 minutes the progress bar had fully loaded but it still hadn't started so I forced a restart. Restarting again, it took 3 minutes to get to the desktop and then a further 1 minute for all icons to load on the desktop. I shut it down and started it again and the progress bar has loaded but after 15 minutes it still hasn't started.
    I only bought it (pre-owned) a few days ago so there's not much on it. The hard drive is 500gb and 469gb is free. There's also 4gb ram.

    When I first got it, I wiped everything and then reinstalled High Sierra (just to make sure that everything from the previous owner was gone). I erased the HD via disk utility, the format was 'unknown' so I selected 'APFS'. The first time I re-installed High Sierra, it came back with an error, something like 'can't create a preboot volume for APFS to install'. I tried to install again and the second time it worked.
    I'm not sure if I have messed up the settings somehow and that's why it's taking ages to load? Maybe the HD isn't formatted properly??

    Once the macbook has actually started it runs fine with no issues.
    I've done a system report and it's came back with no issues.
    I've also checked the SMART Status on 'system information' and it's showing as 'verified'.
    Can anybody advise what could be going on please?
     
  2. keysofanxiety macrumors G3

    keysofanxiety

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2011
    #2
  3. Fishrrman macrumors P6

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #3
    Does it still have the original platter-based hard drive inside?

    If so, you could replace it with an SSD.
    Things will run much better.

    On a MacBook Pro like yours, this is a cheap and easy procedure that ANYONE can do.
     
  4. Nicola-J thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 25, 2016
    #4
    Thanks so much for your quick responses. I will Run the SMART Utility and report back.

    @Fishrrman how can I check if it has the original hard drive? I think it will have, but I'm not sure how to check.
    I have to pop out for the next hour or so but I will report back ASAP.

    Thanks again!
     
  5. Fishrrman macrumors P6

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #5
    "how can I check if it has the original hard drive? I think it will have, but I'm not sure how to check."

    Try this:
    - Go to the Apple menu and choose "about this Mac"
    - There should be a button that says "System Report". Click it.
    - A window will open with all kinds of information.
    - Under hardware, click "SATA/SATA Express" (or just "SATA", if that's all there is)
    - You should see something that says:
    "APPLE HDD HTS541010A9E662"

    It won't be exact, but it will be similar.
    It should say "Apple HDD (and something else)"
    Do you see it?
    What does it say? (copy and past here)
     
  6. Nicola-J thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 25, 2016
    #6
    Thanks, I've had a look and I can't see Apple HDD anywhere? Screenshot attached.
    --- Post Merged, Oct 24, 2018 ---
    Hi, I've ran the SMART Utility and that is showing as passed. There are 2 x Macintosh HD.
    Do you think that's the problem?
     

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  7. Fishrrman macrumors P6

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #7
    Looking at the report, you have a toshiba 5400rpm platter-based drive inside. It looks to be 512gb or so in size.

    Not sure why you see two "MacintoshHD" represented.

    It also shows a MatshitaDVD-R -- which is the DVD/CD drive.

    You can replace the internal hard drive with an SSD and it will run much faster. But...

    Before going further, you didn't tell us what country you're in, or if there are Apple Stores where you are.

    Sometimes the "ribbon cable" that connects the hard drive to the motherboard gets worn or goes bad.
    When this happens, "good communication" is lost between the drive and the computer, and it can look like the hard drive is bad, or "isn't loading", etc.
    The fact that you said it takes forever to boot could be indicative of this.

    If it was the cable -- and NOT the drive -- replacing the drive could still leave you with a "slow-booting" computer.

    If it was me, I'd replace the drive with an SSD first.
    If it still "boots slow", I'd replace the drive ribbon cable.

    If you want to see how to replace the drive, go here:
    https://www.ifixit.com/Guide/MacBook+Pro+13-Inch+Unibody+Late+2011+Hard+Drive+Replacement/7656

    It's not hard, but you do need a Phillips #00 driver and a TORX T-6 driver.
     
  8. Nicola-J thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 25, 2016
    #8
    Thanks for your reply.
    I'm from the UK and there are Apple stores near. I've rang Apple and because the MacBook is "vintage' unfortunately they can't help :/
    Does the Toshiba drive mean that the original Apple drive has been replaced?

    I will switch to SDD, thanks for the advice.

    In the meantime, do you think it's possible that I messed with the hard drive settings?
    When I erased the HD via disk utility, the format was 'unknown'. I'm not sure why the format was unknown but I selected 'APFS' - now I think maybe I should have selected 'Mac OS Extended'.
    After selecting APFS, the first time I re-installed High Sierra, it came back with an error, something like 'can't create a preboot volume for APFS to install'.
    I tried to install again and the second time it worked.
    I'm not sure if I have messed up the HD settings somehow, I don't even know how to check this.

    Is there anyway to check the settings or go back and re-install it properly?
     
  9. Fishrrman macrumors P6

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #9
    "Does the Toshiba drive mean that the original Apple drive has been replaced?"

    That's probably the drive that Apple installed when it was new.

    "I'm not sure why the format was unknown but I selected 'APFS' - now I think maybe I should have selected 'Mac OS Extended'."

    I would use "Mac OS extended with journaling enabled".
    I don't mess with APFS.
     
  10. Nicola-J thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 25, 2016
    #10
    Hi guys,
    Thanks so much for your advice.

    I'm going to get an SSD but can't afford to do this straight away and I really need the laptop working for Monday.

    I've deleted the hard drive and added a new one with the format Mac OS Extended. I then re-installed High Sierra. I'm not sure if I have done this correctly as all of my desktop icons came back, so I haven't done a clean install?

    On System Information - SATA Express, it's showing a Recovery HD and I didn't have this before. Can you please have a look at the screenshot and let me know if this looks OK as I'm not sure if I've deleted and added the drive correctly.

    Due to the fact that all of my icons came back to the desktop after the High Sierra install, have I done something wrong here?
    Thanks :)
     

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  11. Fishrrman macrumors P6

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #11
    Everything looks fine in the image you posted above in #10.
    The Recovery Partition is installed as a part of a fresh OS install.

    Hmmm... what "desktop icons" do you mean?
    Do you mean those that were associated with your account before?

    As part of the OS install, did you import data from anywhere?
     
  12. Nicola-J thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 25, 2016
    #12
    Great thanks.
    Yes, I mean icons/ files that were associated with my account before.
    I had a few documents saved on the desktop and also shortcut icons for Office/ SkyGo etc.
    I was expecting the new install to be completely clean with a blank desktop, however all documents and shortcuts were on the desktop.
    I didn't import data from anywhere, but I did use the same account.
    Thanks
     

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11 October 24, 2018