Macbook Pro will not boot from Snow Leopard dvd, but reads fine when booted from hdd

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by therobfather3, Jun 3, 2011.

  1. therobfather3 macrumors newbie

    Jun 3, 2011

    I've been trying to reinstall Snow Leopard on my Macbook Pro, but I'm running into a bit of a problem.

    My MBP will read the Snow Leopard dvd fine when it is already booted from the hdd (which boots up perfectly, minus some sluggish-ness, hence the reinstall). However, when I try to boot from cd (via either holding 'C' while restarting, or opening the Snow Leopard disc options, clicking Utilities, and clicking Restart), I get the gray Apple logo screen. I can hear the disc trying to be read, but then it dies down, nothing happens for a while, and then the fans start to blast on overdrive. While the fans are screaming at me, the gray Apple logo just taunts me until I have to force reboot and eject the disc.

    I tried using the same disc on my family's iMac, and it worked fine. It was read perfectly while already booted on the hdd, and it was able to boot from the disc and get me to the clean install menu.

    My gut is telling me that this is an optical drive issue, but I wanted to ask here, since I haven't had any problems with my optical drive before.

    Some other notes:

    1. I have booted from this same install dvd once before.
    2. This is a retail version family pack install dvd.

    Any thoughts?
  2. clickclickw00t macrumors regular

    Jun 28, 2007
    What year MBP? The new ones will not work with older versions of Snow Leopard released before the laptop. Only the DVD that came with the laptop will work.

    I get 3 beeps when I try to boot off of 10.6.3 on my 2011 MBP, but works fine with the DVD that came with it.
  3. therobfather3, Jun 3, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2011

    therobfather3 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 3, 2011
    It's a mid-2010 15" MBP. Currently running 10.6.7, but like I said, I've booted and done a clean install from this same disc once before.

    Edit: 2.4 GHz Intel Core i5, if that helps at all, also.

    Edit again: I don't know why I didn't think about it, I've read it countless times today, but I have the gray disc it came with. I feel stupid. Trying it now, we'll see if it works.

    Edit once more: So it seems to boot fine on the gray install disc, so I'll work with that and cross my fingers. I'm still curious why the retail disc decided to just not work all of a sudden. Very odd.
  4. travnz macrumors newbie

    Jun 12, 2011
    Hi there....
    I have a 13" MBP 2011 running 10.6.7

    I had the same problem as OP...

    Apple Care sent me out a replacement DVD version 10.6.3, while trying to boot this also I get the grey screen....and then the computer starts beeping...3 at a time...

    After I restart the MBP and remove the disk the computer boots fine....
    I am getting my original disks in a couple of days...will post the results then.

    I think clickclickw00t is probably on the mark with his comments that the MBP just doesn't like the versions that were created before the computer itself...
  5. wbkaiser macrumors newbie

    Feb 19, 2008
    northern minnesota, usa
    I have the same problem. And the same MBP, 15 inch, Intel I5.

    I can not get the MBP to startup from the DVD that came with the MBP (Leopard) or the Family Pack Snow Leopard DVD.

    I have done the Option Key during startup and see both the hard drive and the DVD. When I select the DVD it does not boot but after restarting with the power button and holding down the eject button, the DVD pops out and the MBP starts up off the hard drive.

    I have done the same with the c key down and the DVD in the drive, no luck.

    I have inserted the DVD, from then clicked on the install Snow Leopard, then clicked on Utilities and continue. No luck.

    If anybody was a solution, I would appreciate it also.

  6. MacBookNick macrumors newbie

    Feb 14, 2012
    Thank you.

    Thanks 4 this info. Spent 24 hrs trying 2 install retail version of Leopard on my MacBook Pro and only get the beeps when restarted. Now I know why! Why do u think Apple have made it this way?

    Do you know how I can remove the Lion hidden partition from my HDD? I upgraded to Lion & changed mind so reinstalled Snow Leopard using shipped disks but when starting Mac in recovery mode it shows the small Lion partition. I guess it's not a problem but is space I could use! Thanks in advance.
  7. snaky69 macrumors 603

    Mar 14, 2008
    They made it this way because a version of OS X that is older than the computer does not have the proper drivers included and could result in system instability.
  8. KRivers macrumors member


    Jun 11, 2012
    The Shire
    It has nothing to do with incapacity or instability. snow leopard is perfectly compatible with the new machines. it is simple apple controlling their products to the detriment of the user.
    i moved an old 2tb internal harddrive out of an 2008 imac 24" into a new 2011 27" imac, and it works fine and has been doing for 6 months. but the time came when the OS needed to be reinstalled because its became clutter and slow, just like it was on the old 2008 machine. ie the new machine wasnt the cause of the slow down.

    this is apples compulsive control freak attitude, nothing else. they want everyone to move to icloud and lion so they are making it impossible for anyone to revert to snow leopard, even tho its the superior OS.

    There are ways around this. you can link two mac with a firewire cable and put the one you wish to install snow leopard on into target disk mode by holding T at boot, then on the other mac which is booted (has to be an older mac, pre lion) load the Snow Leopard installer disc or partition, and then choose the target disk mode computer as the installation destination, which is the newer mac
    there are other ways of modifying the installation image to achieve a similar result also
    hope this helps.
  9. ptesone macrumors newbie

    Oct 27, 2009
    My solution was simple after much thought

    I have a early 2011 iMac that came with Snow Leopard 10.6.6 / iLife DVD's (which now has Mountain Lion on it)

    I also have a mid 2011 MackBook Pro that came with Lion 10.7.x

    I had purchased a Snow Leopard from Apple a year before that, (it was the 10.6.3 DVD), and I wanted to put that on my MBP, but like everyone else I got the 3 beeps indicating no hardware support.

    SO, I got a BlacX USB docking station for SATA HDD (2.5" / 3.5") and simply took the drive out of the MBP, attached it to the iMac via USB and restored it from my iMac using it's DVD of SL 10.6.6 and all is now good

    there's also a $40 SATA cable you can get from Best Buy that will do the trick- if you have another computer to restore from. . .

    good luck all! :p

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