Mid 2012 13in MBP A1278 Wont take 10.13.6

PlayaHeat

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jul 22, 2018
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Mid 2012 13in MBP A1278 Wont take 10.13.6

Wanted to see how i can get my MBP to take this update to 10.13.6. Not sure what is causing this error when i clearly have more than enough space available.

Says....

"macOS could not be installed on your computer

The target disk is too small for this operation.
Quit the installer to restart your computer and try again."
 

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Honza1

macrumors 6502
Nov 30, 2013
419
138
US
Backup first...
Simple things first: reboot. Try Disk Utility.app and "First Aid" the disk - all disks in the tree of the Toshiba SSD. May be one of these simple things helps?
More complicated stuff: Download combo installer from Apple and create USB installation disk (many instructions on the web) and try installing from there. That often helps.
If even that does not work, well, that is real problem ;-)
 

DeltaMac

macrumors G3
Jul 30, 2003
9,535
2,303
Delaware
small point: You can't make a bootable USB installer from the combo updater. You have to download the full macOS installer to do that.
 
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BLUEDOG314

macrumors 6502
Dec 12, 2015
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Another thing you can try is updating through the terminal suoftwareupdate command. I have personally had this work when the app store update fails, and you can read around where people say it is also faster as well.
 

PlayaHeat

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jul 22, 2018
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Another thing you can try is updating through the terminal suoftwareupdate command. I have personally had this work when the app store update fails, and you can read around where people say it is also faster as well.
Thank you all that replied i tried everything above still the same thing. Wondering is it because before i had 256 ssd i had a 320gb regular drive and used super duper to clone the image over wonder if that has anything to do with it?
 

treekram

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Nov 9, 2015
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At this point, there may be something unusual about how your disk is partitioned. If you can go into the Terminal app, type in the following and post the results (if you have external disks, you can exclude those results):

disktutil list

df -g
 
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treekram

macrumors 68000
Nov 9, 2015
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I'm guessing that you don't need to upgrade the EFI because I upgraded to 10.13.6 on my 2012 and 2014 Mini's and it didn't upgrade the firmware. My 2012 MBP shows the same EFI version as yours. I have to apply the latest Sierra security update to see if it will change the EFI version but my guess as this point is that it won't. (The EFI version now seems to be independent of OS version - as long as that OS version is still supported by Apple. My up-to-date EFI on my El Capitan 2012 Mini was not updated when I installed High Sierra.) I'll be doing the Sierra Security Update today and will report back if I see a EFI update was installed.

What I do see is that you have HFS+ (so no APFS-related issues) and you have two partitions at the end - the size of both of them are 650MB, which is the typical size for the recovery partitions. Both have the partition type of "Apple_Boot" but not the name "Recovery HD" which is what one would expect. Your High Sierra partition has ample space (82GB) for the update so it may be that it doesn't like something with the supposed Recovery partitions.

You can mount this partition by (using the Terminal app) typing in:
sudo mount /dev/disk0s3

In the Finder, it should show up as "Recovery HD" (if it actually has the Recovery files there - if it doesn't, everything following this won't apply). Enter the following commands to get an idea of what is in the Recovery partition:
du -m /Volumes/Recovery\ HD

On a HFS+ Recovery partition for 10.13.4 that I have, I get:
0 /Volumes/Recovery HD/.fseventsd
3 /Volumes/Recovery HD/com.apple.recovery.boot/.diagnostics
494 /Volumes/Recovery HD/com.apple.recovery.boot
494 /Volumes/Recovery HD

You may or may not have .fseventsd and if you have 10.13.5, the 494 number may be larger.
If you type in:

cat /Volumes/Recovery\ HD/com.apple.recovery.boot/SystemVersion.plist

Towards the bottom, under <key>ProductVersion</key>, it should show the OS version it was meant for.

When you want to look at the other partition, eject the "Recovery HD" from the Finder and then type in:
sudo mount /dev/disk0s4

So the idea is to see if you have two different Recovery partitions or the same and if they're different, see which one is applicable.

When I have information on whether my EFI version was updated, I'll report back.
[doublepost=1532475546][/doublepost]After doing the 2018-004 Sierra Security update, my EFI firmware is at MB91.00DA.B00 - no change. If somebody with the mid-2012 MBP with High Sierra can confirm, that would be good - but I don't think they had a firmware update for 10.13.6 (as long as you already had the latest update).
 

PlayaHeat

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jul 22, 2018
7
0
I'm guessing that you don't need to upgrade the EFI because I upgraded to 10.13.6 on my 2012 and 2014 Mini's and it didn't upgrade the firmware. My 2012 MBP shows the same EFI version as yours. I have to apply the latest Sierra security update to see if it will change the EFI version but my guess as this point is that it won't. (The EFI version now seems to be independent of OS version - as long as that OS version is still supported by Apple. My up-to-date EFI on my El Capitan 2012 Mini was not updated when I installed High Sierra.) I'll be doing the Sierra Security Update today and will report back if I see a EFI update was installed.

What I do see is that you have HFS+ (so no APFS-related issues) and you have two partitions at the end - the size of both of them are 650MB, which is the typical size for the recovery partitions. Both have the partition type of "Apple_Boot" but not the name "Recovery HD" which is what one would expect. Your High Sierra partition has ample space (82GB) for the update so it may be that it doesn't like something with the supposed Recovery partitions.

You can mount this partition by (using the Terminal app) typing in:
sudo mount /dev/disk0s3

In the Finder, it should show up as "Recovery HD" (if it actually has the Recovery files there - if it doesn't, everything following this won't apply). Enter the following commands to get an idea of what is in the Recovery partition:
du -m /Volumes/Recovery\ HD

On a HFS+ Recovery partition for 10.13.4 that I have, I get:
0 /Volumes/Recovery HD/.fseventsd
3 /Volumes/Recovery HD/com.apple.recovery.boot/.diagnostics
494 /Volumes/Recovery HD/com.apple.recovery.boot
494 /Volumes/Recovery HD

You may or may not have .fseventsd and if you have 10.13.5, the 494 number may be larger.
If you type in:

cat /Volumes/Recovery\ HD/com.apple.recovery.boot/SystemVersion.plist

Towards the bottom, under <key>ProductVersion</key>, it should show the OS version it was meant for.

When you want to look at the other partition, eject the "Recovery HD" from the Finder and then type in:
sudo mount /dev/disk0s4

So the idea is to see if you have two different Recovery partitions or the same and if they're different, see which one is applicable.

When I have information on whether my EFI version was updated, I'll report back.
[doublepost=1532475546][/doublepost]After doing the 2018-004 Sierra Security update, my EFI firmware is at MB91.00DA.B00 - no change. If somebody with the mid-2012 MBP with High Sierra can confirm, that would be good - but I don't think they had a firmware update for 10.13.6 (as long as you already had the latest update).

So are you on 10.13.5 or .6?? I'm on .5 can't update to .6
 

treekram

macrumors 68000
Nov 9, 2015
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So are you on 10.13.5 or .6?? I'm on .5 can't update to .6
On my 2 Mac Mini's, I'm on 10.13.6, on my mid-2012 MBP 13", I'm on 10.12.6. If you're asking why I believe your EFI update version is current when I don't have High Sierra on my MBP, I wrote the explanation in the previous post. As further corroboration, I've opened the macOSUpdCombo10.13.6.dmg file (combo update download for 10.13.6) and in a directory called
FirmwareUpdate.pkg/Scripts/Tools/EFIPayloads, there are files for all of the firmware updates that may need to be applied to different computers (if they are not on that version already). Here they are:

Code:
IM101_00D0_00B.scap    MB61_00CC_00B.scap    MBP132_0247_B00.fd
IM111_0039_00B.scap    MB71_003F_00B.scap    MBP133_0247_B00.fd
IM112_005D_00B.scap    MB81_0174_B00.fd      MBP141_0178_B00.fd
IM121_004F_00B.scap    MB91_0172_B00.fd      MBP142_0178_B00.fd
IM131_0115_B00.scap    MBA31_0069_00B.scap   MBP143_0178_B00.fd
IM141_0130_B00.scap    MBA41_0080_B00.scap   MBP61_005D_00B.scap
IM142_0130_B00.scap    MBA51_00F8_B00.scap   MBP71_003F_00B.scap
IM143_0130_B00.scap    MBA61_0107_B00.scap   MBP81_0050_00B.scap
IM144_0189_B00.scap    MBA71_0178_B00.fd     MBP91_00DA_B00.scap
IM151_0217_B00.scap    MBP101_00F6_B00.scap  MM41_0047_00B.scap
IM161_0220_B00.fd      MBP102_010E_B00.scap  MM51_0080_B00.scap
IM162_0219_B00.fd      MBP111_0146_B00.scap  MM61_010E_B00.scap
IM171_0157_B00.fd      MBP112_0146_B00.scap  MM71_0232_B00.scap
IM181_0161_B00.fd      MBP114_0184_B00.fd    MP61_0124_B00.scap
IM183_0161_B00.fd      MBP121_0177_B00.fd
MB101_0163_B00.fd      MBP131_0223_B00.fd
If you'll notice, the firmware for the mid-2012 13" MBP (prefix "MBP91"), what you have is the version that 10.13.6 requires.

If you're asking what version of 10.13 I have for a different reason, please explain.
 

treekram

macrumors 68000
Nov 9, 2015
1,849
401
Honolulu HI
You have the message:
The target disk is too small for this operation.
Quit the installer to restart your computer and try again.

Now, we see that you have enough space on the "Toshiba SSD" partition. However, as mentioned earlier, you have two partitions which would seem to be Recovery partitions because of their size. But they don't have a name - we would except "Recovery HD". So, perhaps the second partition was created because the software didn't think it was the Recovery partition because it didn't have a name and now, when it tries to do the same thing, a new partition can't be created from the "Toshiba SSD" partition so it fails. Now, I'm pretty sure in the past that update software didn't force a Recovery partition if one didn't exist. But I don't know if that's the case now.

So I don't know if that's the issue or not. Now you haven't done the commands that I outlined in post #10. That would help to see if that is indeed the problem or not (if the version in the 3rd partition is the update you applied after the version in the 4th partition, then that makes this explanation more plausible).

But if you want to skip what I mentioned in post #10 and just plow ahead, then you can type in these commands:

sudo diskutil rename /dev/disk0s4 Recovery\ HD

sudo diskutil rename /dev/disk0s3 whatever

sudo asr adjust --target /dev/disk0s3 --settype "Apple_HFS"


This will rename one of the partitions and to avoid confusion, it will set the other partition to something that will be less likely to confuse the software. Now if you have problems in executing the rename command, that may explain why previous update(s) also had a problem.

Actually, now I notice another anomaly in your partition table. The total of your used partitions is 250.9 GB, but it looks like your SSD is 256.1 GB - sometimes the numbers don't match exactly but 6GB difference to me seems like there's an unused space somewhere. Who knows - that may also be confusing the install software. That can be found by typing in the following:
sudo gpt -r show disk0
 

PlayaHeat

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jul 22, 2018
7
0
You have the message:
The target disk is too small for this operation.
Quit the installer to restart your computer and try again.

Now, we see that you have enough space on the "Toshiba SSD" partition. However, as mentioned earlier, you have two partitions which would seem to be Recovery partitions because of their size. But they don't have a name - we would except "Recovery HD". So, perhaps the second partition was created because the software didn't think it was the Recovery partition because it didn't have a name and now, when it tries to do the same thing, a new partition can't be created from the "Toshiba SSD" partition so it fails. Now, I'm pretty sure in the past that update software didn't force a Recovery partition if one didn't exist. But I don't know if that's the case now.

So I don't know if that's the issue or not. Now you haven't done the commands that I outlined in post #10. That would help to see if that is indeed the problem or not (if the version in the 3rd partition is the update you applied after the version in the 4th partition, then that makes this explanation more plausible).

But if you want to skip what I mentioned in post #10 and just plow ahead, then you can type in these commands:

sudo diskutil rename /dev/disk0s4 Recovery\ HD

sudo diskutil rename /dev/disk0s3 whatever

sudo asr adjust --target /dev/disk0s3 --settype "Apple_HFS"


This will rename one of the partitions and to avoid confusion, it will set the other partition to something that will be less likely to confuse the software. Now if you have problems in executing the rename command, that may explain why previous update(s) also had a problem.

Actually, now I notice another anomaly in your partition table. The total of your used partitions is 250.9 GB, but it looks like your SSD is 256.1 GB - sometimes the numbers don't match exactly but 6GB difference to me seems like there's an unused space somewhere. Who knows - that may also be confusing the install software. That can be found by typing in the following:
sudo gpt -r show disk0


Thanx for taking your time in trying to help me with this and being so detailed here is a screenshot of the commands not sure how to mount or when i should type the commands.
 

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treekram

macrumors 68000
Nov 9, 2015
1,849
401
Honolulu HI
Sorry, that should be:

sudo diskutil mount /dev/disk0s4

Try this and see if "Recovery HD" shows up in the Finder, in the Devices list where your USB external drives usually appear. If it doesn't show up or an empty entry shows up (a disk icon with no name), then you just do the rename command at this point.

sudo diskutil rename /dev/disk0s4 Recovery\ HD

Now, I have noticed that sometimes the eject button will appear in the Finder some times and some times not. If it doesn't appear, you need to use the following command to eject it:

sudo diskutil unmount /dev/disk0s4

So at this point you can follow the same steps to rename the other partition:

sudo diskutil mount /dev/disk0s3

sudo diskutil rename /dev/disk0s3 whatever

sudo diskutil unmount /dev/disk0s3


And then, after the unmount,

sudo asr adjust --target /dev/disk0s3 --settype "Apple_HFS"


The gpt command should be

sudo gpt -r show /dev/disk0
 

chrfr

macrumors G3
Jul 11, 2009
8,195
2,524
Thank you all that replied i tried everything above still the same thing. Wondering is it because before i had 256 ssd i had a 320gb regular drive and used super duper to clone the image over wonder if that has anything to do with it?
These computers are very prone to failure of the cable that connects the drive to the main board. When it goes, you'll get all sorts of strange behavior related to disk activity. It wouldn't surprise me if that's your problem. The Apple Store was replacing a lot of them for free, or for a very low cost repair. The job takes about 5-10 minutes total. You might check with them to see if that's the problem.
 

treekram

macrumors 68000
Nov 9, 2015
1,849
401
Honolulu HI
These computers are very prone to failure of the cable that connects the drive to the main board. When it goes, you'll get all sorts of strange behavior related to disk activity. It wouldn't surprise me if that's your problem. The Apple Store was replacing a lot of them for free, or for a very low cost repair. The job takes about 5-10 minutes total. You might check with them to see if that's the problem.
I would expect more unusual behavior if it was the cable. But I wouldn't rule it out either. In any case, it appears that the free cable replacement ended some time ago.

For the OP, I would try the steps to rename the Recovery partitions and see if the commands actually work, first of all, and if the commands work, see if the update will work. If it doesn't, then if you'd like to try the bad cable theory, I would take the SSD out and put it in a USB enclosure and try it there. It is important to note that the commands I have above won't work if you put the disk in a USB enclosure (they would have to be modified).

However, chrfr's post also brings up a possible alternative to your problems. If it's not difficult for you to visit the Genius Bar at an Apple store, they may be able to help you. If you decide to go that route, there are certain things that I think you need to inform them about which will help them (and you).
 

Soeryobadja

macrumors newbie
Jul 3, 2019
2
0
Hello all.

I have Macbook Pro mid 2012 A1278 13" that was previously run macOS 10.8 until recently I want to upgrade it to Mojave.

However, I feel like it is a leap too far since I cannot install Mojave due to message "the target disk is too small for this operation".

Here is the chronology.
0. I already modified my MBP to a dual boot system, main drive is SSD using Samsung 860 Evo 500GB, while existing HDD move to DVD bay. I cloned the HDD to the new SSD and putting the SSD on main drive bay, all worked like a charm. It's been running like this for around one year.
1. I created a Mojave usb disk installer with createinstallmedia, as I want to have a fresh install of macOS.
2. Booting from USB, erasing and formatting the SSD using macOS Extended, all goes well, the installer runs. The system then restarts. After restarts, system installing (37 minutes remaining with progress bar shown on the display), but then it goes a bit quickly and even before progress bar was full, the system says "macOS could not be installed on your computer. The target disk is too small for this operation".
3. I then tried installing High Sierra, same problem showing and I cannot commence the install. How many times I restart the system, running the USB installer, erase and format the drive, result is the same.
4. I then move back one step to Sierra, and it can be installed, MBP up and running with Sierra normal.
5. After installation finish, I download Mojave from the AppStore, thinking to do direct update from Sierra to Mojave. Turns out, result the same, same problem, same issue.
6. Then, thinking it was a firmware issue that (hopefully) resolved and updated during installatiln of Sierra, I then do a fresh install with a Mojave USB. Erase and format the main drive, then it was the same case.
7. Thinking that it might be a problem of my HDD (the original MBP HDD with around 250GB space left), I then open the MBP and remove the HDD, so it is only the SSD left. Then, tried to do fresh install using Mojave USB, same result.
8. Trying with multuliple times restarts-USB install, result still the same. Cannot install due to target disk is too small for this operation.

Anything I might have missed? Is this about the main drive cable, like many forums discussed? As I see it, I dont have any stability problem at all (everything works fine, audio software running perfectly for recording and mixing) when running 10.8 inside Samsung SSD. Could it be the drive cable, if no symptoms was detected before doing the update?

Thank you very much for any advise and suggestions on my above case.
 

DeltaMac

macrumors G3
Jul 30, 2003
9,535
2,303
Delaware
Try this clean install:
Boot to your USB Mojave installer.
Open Disk Utility.
Click on View icon, and make sure that "Show All Devices" is selected.
Select the manufacturer's info line for your Samsung SSD (probably will be the topmost line), then choose erase. Name the new drive, with a name that you like. Make sure that the Format is macOS Extended (journaled), and the "Scheme" is GUID Partition Map. Then, continue with the erase. That will assure that all partition information on the drive is reset, and there is only the one partition for the installer to use.
Then, quit Disk Utility, and choose Reinstall macOS. Make sure that you choose the destination correctly (should be that same partition name that you just used)
If THAT does not change anything, then, yes, try replacing the SATA cable.
 

treekram

macrumors 68000
Nov 9, 2015
1,849
401
Honolulu HI
Hello all.

I have Macbook Pro mid 2012 A1278 13" that was previously run macOS 10.8 until recently I want to upgrade it to Mojave.

However, I feel like it is a leap too far since I cannot install Mojave due to message "the target disk is too small for this operation".

Here is the chronology.
0. I already modified my MBP to a dual boot system, main drive is SSD using Samsung 860 Evo 500GB, while existing HDD move to DVD bay. I cloned the HDD to the new SSD and putting the SSD on main drive bay, all worked like a charm. It's been running like this for around one year.
1. I created a Mojave usb disk installer with createinstallmedia, as I want to have a fresh install of macOS.
2. Booting from USB, erasing and formatting the SSD using macOS Extended, all goes well, the installer runs. The system then restarts. After restarts, system installing (37 minutes remaining with progress bar shown on the display), but then it goes a bit quickly and even before progress bar was full, the system says "macOS could not be installed on your computer. The target disk is too small for this operation".
3. I then tried installing High Sierra, same problem showing and I cannot commence the install. How many times I restart the system, running the USB installer, erase and format the drive, result is the same.
4. I then move back one step to Sierra, and it can be installed, MBP up and running with Sierra normal.
5. After installation finish, I download Mojave from the AppStore, thinking to do direct update from Sierra to Mojave. Turns out, result the same, same problem, same issue.
6. Then, thinking it was a firmware issue that (hopefully) resolved and updated during installatiln of Sierra, I then do a fresh install with a Mojave USB. Erase and format the main drive, then it was the same case.
7. Thinking that it might be a problem of my HDD (the original MBP HDD with around 250GB space left), I then open the MBP and remove the HDD, so it is only the SSD left. Then, tried to do fresh install using Mojave USB, same result.
8. Trying with multuliple times restarts-USB install, result still the same. Cannot install due to target disk is too small for this operation.

Anything I might have missed? Is this about the main drive cable, like many forums discussed? As I see it, I dont have any stability problem at all (everything works fine, audio software running perfectly for recording and mixing) when running 10.8 inside Samsung SSD. Could it be the drive cable, if no symptoms was detected before doing the update?

Thank you very much for any advise and suggestions on my above case.
You can try what was suggested in post #20. If that doesn't work, run the diskutil command (see post #7 above) and the post the results. You can do the diskutil command by booting from the HDD or running Recovery or the installer (I think it has that option) by running the Terminal program from the Utilities menu.
 

Soeryobadja

macrumors newbie
Jul 3, 2019
2
0
Try this clean install:
Boot to your USB Mojave installer.
Open Disk Utility.
Click on View icon, and make sure that "Show All Devices" is selected.
Select the manufacturer's info line for your Samsung SSD (probably will be the topmost line), then choose erase. Name the new drive, with a name that you like. Make sure that the Format is macOS Extended (journaled), and the "Scheme" is GUID Partition Map. Then, continue with the erase. That will assure that all partition information on the drive is reset, and there is only the one partition for the installer to use.
Then, quit Disk Utility, and choose Reinstall macOS. Make sure that you choose the destination correctly (should be that same partition name that you just used)
If THAT does not change anything, then, yes, try replacing the SATA cable.
Yes, it worked!
Thanks a million @DeltaMac
Also to @treekram for looking at my case and suggesting.
Thanks again..:):)