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macrumors newbie
Original poster
Apr 9, 2012
So I have a perfectly functioning 2006 macbook that I want to give my daughter who is going away to school in two weeks. Only problem (I thought) was that the hard drive was only 60gb. So I backed it up, bought a new scorpio with some more gigs and swapped them out. Was surprisingly easy.

I have the original system discs, and when I went to boot from the system discs I found out the optical drive is non-functioning. I put the old hard drive back and tried other discs, it just spits them out.

It is going to cost a ridiculous amount of money to replace the optical drive, so what I want to know, is can I buy an external cd drive and boot with the system discs from that?

Thanks in advance!


macrumors 65816
Feb 4, 2006
In a word yes

MacBooks will boot from USB including USB optical drives - I have used a Samsung USB dvd drive and it works fine.....


macrumors newbie
Aug 14, 2012
Houston, TX
My MacBook DVD drive stopped working just like that too. The computer didn’t fall or have been exposed to the sun or anything that may have caused a failure.
Is there any way I can run a test that shows that the actual problem is the Drive (Hardware) and not the system (software)?:confused:

NOTE: my computer is a MacBook (13-inch, Late 2006) - 1.83GHz MacBook (MA699LL/A) with a Combo drive (DVD-ROM/CD-RW).


macrumors 6502
Feb 3, 2010
loughborough. u.k.
i had this prob also, so what to do is take the drive out and take the top cover off drive don't worry as long as you have the right tools and are careful there isn't much harm you can do.

now you will see the 'eye' get a cloth something like a soft tea towel (it has to be soft so as not to scratch but course enough to remove 'grit')

now very carefully rub across the eye, be gentle with it though!

now the reason for doing this is because after time dust that naturally gathers around electrics will turn into small pieces of grit, not that you can see them but they are there on the optical eye, which will cause this problem.

this is caused over time by the dust heating up and cooling down which turns the particles into grit.

now if you are careful and gentle you can actually feel them click off.

good luck.
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