"New" macbook is actually used???

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by maverick18x, Jun 15, 2007.

  1. maverick18x macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 31, 2005
    #1
    One of my friends purchased a new black macbook from the Apple store yesterday, so he called me over to open it with him and help set it up. When I got there, he was just starting to enter information into the welcome screen. I made some comment like, "did you like the welcome animation?" and he said he hadn't seen it yet. That surprised me, but I didn't think much of it... we continued to set him up.

    We got him logged in (never did see the welcome screen) and the macbook automatically started running software updates. After his computer restarted I figured we'd be set to start changing preferences and installing software. I noticed the time was already set to Austin, TX when we're up in Minneapolis, MN.

    iChat was also acting weird... as soon as he signed on to AIM he would get disconnected. I logged in to his account fine from my laptop, so it wasn't the router or the settings, it was his hardware (probably his firewall settings?). I opened every port I could in the Sharing preference pane, but it still refuses to connect.

    Then I realized, these all seemed to be issues at the firmware level that suggested his macbook had been used before? Right? Wiping the hard drive would remove just about everything but not the time zone or firewall settings, and it wouldn't restore the welcome animation either, correct?

    Am I on the correct line of thinking that maybe this "new" macbook had been opened before?

    Thanks,
    Matt
     
  2. dswoodley macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2002
    #2
    Not sure about the firewall setting. But the clock issue seems strange. The default for every mac i ever first setup has been Cupertino, CA - of course. yeah, I think someone else might have got their hands on that.
     
  3. Littleodie914 macrumors 68000

    Littleodie914

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    Jun 9, 2004
    Location:
    Rochester, NY
    #3
    Wiping the hard drive would, I think, reset the firewall and time zone settings. I'm pretty sure all that is handled by the OS.

    If I were you I'd just wipe the HD and start over from scratch.
     
  4. Mundy macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2006
    #4
    I don't think so.

    Wiping the hard drive and reinstalling OS X would in fact restore the firewall settings to their default. It would also restore the welcome animation (I know, as I've wiped hard drives and reinstalled OS X many times).

    It's hard to say what's going on with the system clock.
     
  5. zub3qin macrumors 65816

    zub3qin

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2007
    #5
    Is there some way to check your Macbook when you get it to see if it has been used?

    I am getting a refurb'd unit (although I suspect it is a new one since I got the 2.0Ghz Blackbook and the new 2.16 ones just came out).

    I know with most electronics, including tv's, there is a service menu where you can see "hours used" or some such function.

    Is there a way to see if how new or old the Refurb'd unit is?
     
  6. EricNau Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

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    Apr 27, 2005
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    #6
    ...Doing an 'Erase and Install' from the OS X system disk has never reset the welcome animation for me.
     
  7. skubish macrumors 68030

    skubish

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    Ann Arbor, Michigan
    #7
    I would just return it if he just got it. It should work right out of the box.
     
  8. iW00t macrumors 68040

    iW00t

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    #8
    That is strange, it always does.
     
  9. fivetoadsloth macrumors 65816

    fivetoadsloth

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    Aug 15, 2006
    #9
    Just wanted to say I know most of my macs clocks have been set to uastin as it is first in the alphabetical order.
     
  10. synth3tik macrumors 68040

    synth3tik

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    Oct 11, 2006
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    #10
    It very well could have been an open box item. I think before that one of my Macs was set to TX time as well, maybe that just a trick Apple is playing on people in Minneapolis. If I remember I think there is a way that you can bypass the welcome screen, but I may be mistaking on that. What does the piece of tape that held the box closed look like? Apple uses a longer oval shaped piece of tape. I bought my MBP from a friend and he had to spend some time to recreate the tape. Did you get the computer from an Apple Store or from First Tech. I can see First Tech re-boxing an item and selling it as new.
     
  11. sanford macrumors 65816

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    Jan 5, 2003
    Location:
    Dallas, USA
    #11
    All my recent Macs have been set to Cupertino in the Pacific time zone.

    If it boots straight to the desktop without going through the set-up and registration assistant, it's been set up before, even if who ever did it didn't actually set anything.

    Take it back. It's probably fine, but your friend is not paying for a used computer therefore should not receive one. You can't even be sure this is just an improperly packaged refurb -- which would mean it had been thoroughly checked out and restored functionally and aesthetically to "like new" condition (and therefore should boot to the set-up assistant). Just take it back. Explain it had obviously been used because it booted straight to the desktop, did not walk you through set up, the time zone was set to Austin when new Macs are set to Cupertino -- trust me on that one, my MacBook was, my PowerBook before that was, my PowerBook before that was, my iBook before that was.

    A manager will approve the trade out. You're obviously not up to anything. You don't want your money back without paying a restocking fee; you just want an assuredly new computer. If the manager says no, get him -- or her -- to get his direct superior on the phone right then. If he says no, tell him you want his direct report at corporate on the phone right now. Believe me, they'll take it back. I've had Apple Stores on two different occasions give me brand new iPods, once six and once eight months into ownership, because it was acting mildly funny and we were sure it was just a quirk introduced by a new firmware update, but as they sales clerks said, why risk it.
     
  12. Eidorian macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

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    Location:
    Indianapolis
    #12
    My iMac Core Duo already had someone's account on it when I powered it up the first time. It was perfectly wrapped and still sealed in its EULA wrap though. A clean install of OS X solved it but it was very strange.
     
  13. synth3tik macrumors 68040

    synth3tik

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    Minneapolis, MN
    #13


    That would have been a time when I would bring it back as ask for a $150 or so, or a new machine. Even though everything is OK, it is no longer "new"
     
  14. sanford macrumors 65816

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    Dallas, USA
    #14
    Oh wait a minute. I re-read your post If the set-up screen came up, maybe he just missed the animation. And iChat/AIM acts wonky all the time. And wonky in the sense that you can't log in but the guy sitting right next to you on the same network can.

    The firewall is entirely in software. All my Macs came set to Cupertino, but Apple does have a large facility in Austin, so maybe they set half of them for Austin.

    Since it didn't boot straight to the desktop, I'd say do a clean erase and install. Then set it up again. If thing still won't work, take it back as DOA. Within 10 days, they'll probably swap it on the spot, no questions asked. Take everything that came with it, plastic wrap, twist ties, everything.
     
  15. Eidorian macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

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    Indianapolis
    #15
    A little late now...but thanks.
     
  16. pjarvi macrumors 65816

    pjarvi

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    Round Lake, IL
    #16
    It could be that it didn't pass a QA test in manufacturing and got pulled off the line for repair, whereby the technician may have booted it up to make sure something worked before adding it back into inventory. Seems rather lazy that they wouldn't have re-imaged the drive to factory default though. :confused:
     
  17. wako macrumors 65816

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    Jun 6, 2005
    #17
    If you believe the system is not new, goto the www.Apple.com/Support


    On the bottom of the page there is an area where you may enter in the serial number to see when the computer was registered.
     
  18. Wolfpup macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2006
    #18
    Good idea, but that would only work if it actually WAS registered, right?

    This all sounds very fishy to me. The bad thing is, had someone just wiped the drive and reinstalled, you'd never know.

    But...who the heck is using these if they're coming straight from Apple? Apple wouldn't try to sell a refurb as new, would they? Maybe as an accident?
     
  19. wako macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2005
    #19
    When you buy something from the Apple store (physical shop only) they scan your serial number, and it actually registers the system. It wont put your name and information down, but thats exactly when the warranty time starts ticking.

    Now of course someone is going to say, "What? How do you know?" Simple, it is because when I worked at BestBuy, we did something similar to this on some electronics, I think it was Satellite radio and TVs (XM and Sirius) where the we scanned the serial number and the information is then transferred immediately to the company. I figured Apple would do the same, and it was confirmed when I bought a mac last year and before I turned it on and registered it, it was already in their data base with the date of my purchase.
     
  20. Eraserhead macrumors G4

    Eraserhead

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    UK
    #20
    Same here.
     
  21. Wolfpup macrumors 68030

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    Sep 7, 2006
    #21
    Okay, I get it. I was thinking he meant Apple.com, but then I would have thought they'd register it the same way. Thanks for the info!

    If it was a physical Apple store, that seems like it's easier to understand how a used one could get sold as new.
     
  22. synth3tik macrumors 68040

    synth3tik

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    Oct 11, 2006
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    #22
    yah

    They scan the serial number to track inventory. It's called loss prevention. Your warranty starts when you get your computer home, plug it in and fill out all the info and hit "register Now". Trust me Apple is not like Best Bay, at all.
     
  23. wako macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2005
    #23
    Then explain how my mac I bought last year and my iPod I havent even opened yet that I bought at the store is already in their data base with the purchase date as the date when my warranty began?

    Not to burst your bubble any further either, but if you read the warranty it says the warranty starts ON THE DATE OF PURCHASE. That is why if you ever bought your mac at say BestBuy, CompUSA, etc that dont have the information of the date of purchase, Apple actually tells you keep the receipt.


    Thats from Here

    No where does the fine line say when you feel like registering your product.
     
  24. CalBoy macrumors 604

    CalBoy

    Joined:
    May 21, 2007
    #24
    That's not true at all. If you look at the receipt, the warranty expiration date is written on it. The warranty is attached to the hardware itself, not the owner. Many people can register the notebook.

    As for the OP, I say take it back to the Apple Store and say you want a new one. Explain how the prefrences had been changed etc. Also, try to see if you can spot any blemishes, discoloration, anything that might show that your friend hadn't been the first to handle it.
     
  25. mandis macrumors regular

    mandis

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    Feb 18, 2005
    Location:
    UK
    #25
    Try running cocconut battery. It should give you information concerning the mb's age and the number of battery recharge cycles. Just my 2 pence... ;)
     

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