Major problems with first gen MacBook Air. Hardware or software problem?

BreakfastKing

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 30, 2012
4
0
Hello,

I recently got my dad's old MacBook Air (the original version) because it booted extremely slow and was extremely slow after the boot as well, and he thought I might be able to get it working again.

So, I made a bootable USB stick with a Snow Leopard (seemed the best choice for me, it isn't a fast machine..) installer on it. Everything seemed fine until I got to the ''choose the disk where you want to install OSX on'' part. Here it just said 'can't install OSX on this drive'.

I opened Disk Utility to see what's wrong and to format the drive, but in the menu the Samsung hard drive was colored red, and it said that it was damaged and couldn't be repaired. This was some sort of ''S.M.A.R.T'' failure.

So, the disappointed me clicked away, but when I got to the choose the disk part again, it worked fine. It installed OSX fine and after that and the updates it TOTALLY worked fine. It was even much faster then I expected!

I was very happy with this result, but next morning (I didn't plug it in over night) it was empty so I boot the machine again. The exact same problem returned. Booting took about half an hour (not a joke) and after that it was EXTREMELY slow, and I mean REALLY slow, it took literally 3 minutes to open a finder window.

Now I'm completely flustered and I don't know what to do. The hard drive could be defect, but that doesn't explain why the machine worked perfectly for one night.... I hope you're able to help me.

Thanks!
 

Zedsdead185

macrumors 6502
Sep 14, 2006
489
21
UK
Hello,

I recently got my dad's old MacBook Air (the original version) because it booted extremely slow and was extremely slow after the boot as well, and he thought I might be able to get it working again.

So, I made a bootable USB stick with a Snow Leopard (seemed the best choice for me, it isn't a fast machine..) installer on it. Everything seemed fine until I got to the ''choose the disk where you want to install OSX on'' part. Here it just said 'can't install OSX on this drive'.

I opened Disk Utility to see what's wrong and to format the drive, but in the menu the Samsung hard drive was colored red, and it said that it was damaged and couldn't be repaired. This was some sort of ''S.M.A.R.T'' failure.

So, the disappointed me clicked away, but when I got to the choose the disk part again, it worked fine. It installed OSX fine and after that and the updates it TOTALLY worked fine. It was even much faster then I expected!

I was very happy with this result, but next morning (I didn't plug it in over night) it was empty so I boot the machine again. The exact same problem returned. Booting took about half an hour (not a joke) and after that it was EXTREMELY slow, and I mean REALLY slow, it took literally 3 minutes to open a finder window.

Now I'm completely flustered and I don't know what to do. The hard drive could be defect, but that doesn't explain why the machine worked perfectly for one night.... I hope you're able to help me.

Thanks!
Its a dud drive thats on its way out. They can be temperamental when they are failing and that may explain why you managed to install a fresh OS X install. At this stage sometimes they work (which can be a god save if you need to rescue some data from it if not backed up) and sometimes they don't. In the end they always fail shortly after.
 
Comment

BreakfastKing

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 30, 2012
4
0
Its a dud drive thats on its way out. They can be temperamental when they are failing and that may explain why you managed to install a fresh OS X install. At this stage sometimes they work (which can be a god save if you need to rescue some data from it if not backed up) and sometimes they don't. In the end they always fail shortly after.
Thanks for your help. Is it worth it to put in a new hard drive? I looked it up and I can get them from about 60 euros, and probably can put it in myself, but is it worth investing in a dying machine?
 
Comment

Zedsdead185

macrumors 6502
Sep 14, 2006
489
21
UK
Thanks for your help. Is it worth it to put in a new hard drive? I looked it up and I can get them from about 60 euros, and probably can put it in myself, but is it worth investing in a dying machine?
I personally think it is definately worth investing in the new drive. Also, I wouldn't say that it was a dying machine, just a dying Hard Drive, and replacing it should eliminate that problem. Unless there are more problems you haven't told us about? Absolutely everything you have mentioned so far points towards a dying Hard drive and only a dying hard drive. If it was me, I'd look at a few iFixit guides, find out the specs for a new hard drive to fit it, buy one and install it.
 
Comment

BreakfastKing

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 30, 2012
4
0
I personally think it is definately worth investing in the new drive. Also, I wouldn't say that it was a dying machine, just a dying Hard Drive, and replacing it should eliminate that problem. Unless there are more problems you haven't told us about? Absolutely everything you have mentioned so far points towards a dying Hard drive and only a dying hard drive. If it was me, I'd look at a few iFixit guides, find out the specs for a new hard drive to fit it, buy one and install it.
Okay I will take a look (= Thanks for your help!
 
Comment

BreakfastKing

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 30, 2012
4
0
No problem! Let me know how it goes if you do buy a replacement. :)
Since I'm a little short on money, I've decided to install OS X on a portable hard drive until I have the money to buy a new one Not ideal, but a good solution for in the meantime (=
 
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