RAM upgrade - Leave Magsafe connected?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by orangezorki, Sep 14, 2011.

  1. orangezorki macrumors 6502a

    Aug 30, 2006
    Hello everyone,

    I've got a mid-2009 15" MBP with the 2.8Ghz Core2Duo and 4Gb of RAM. Aside from some silly and unaffordable ideas of getting a 11"MBA and a thunderbolt display, it's still more than enough for my needs. However, Lion has come along, and with the fantastic ability to full screen apps and swipe between them, I suddenly find the machine bogging down and paging out, despite having over 1Gb of inactive memory.

    So, I have ordered 8Gb of RAM, and will swap when it arrives tomorrow. However, I have always been a bit afraid of frying the logic board when going anywhere near it. When upgrading desktops in the past, I have usually kept the machine plugged in but switched off at the wall so the machine is earthed, but I can't find anything on these forums saying if keeping the magsafe connected but off would do the same.

    Is there any received wisdom on this matter?

    Thanks in advance,

  2. iVikD macrumors regular


    Sep 11, 2011
    I would recommend having it unplugged and wearing a static bracelet. If you don't have one, simply touch a metal surface before getting close to the chips (I believe this is in the manual that came with the computer, check there for more detailed info.)
  3. The Artemis macrumors newbie

    Jul 21, 2011
    The recommendation given by Apple is to just touch a metal surface inside your computer to discharge static build-up. Before beginning, you should unplug and turn off your computer.
  4. orangezorki thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Aug 30, 2006
    Thanks for the quick replies.

    So does this mean that the idea of keeping it plugged in but off has been wrong all along, or does it only apply to desktops?

  5. killerrobot macrumors 68020


    Jun 7, 2007
    No, not all along. PSUs and most electronics are just more advanced than back in the day and don't "leak" as much current anymore even when turned off. The most you need to worry about is making sure you're earthed or have the same charge as the machine by touching it before the RAM and installing it. If you're still weary of it all, then do as iVikD suggests and wear a static bracelet.
  6. accessoriesguy macrumors 6502a

    Jul 8, 2011
    Do that, and I would add to remove the battery as an extra precaution. For whatever reason you don't want to click the power button, or have an energy source close to your work environment.
  7. orangezorki thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Aug 30, 2006
    Thanks again for the advice - have successfully installed the memory, and it's showing up and working fine, including 1 and a half loops of rember on the free memory at boot up.

  8. shardey macrumors 6502a


    Jan 28, 2010
    You realize that the batteries are built in?

    OP just touch a metal surface like a washer or dryer and you will be fine. Never have I had a problem installing any type of ram.
  9. kappaknight macrumors 68000


    Mar 5, 2009
    Glad to see you done it without issues.

    Instead of removing the battery, I would have just recommended disconnecting it.

    Also, not sure how one would press the power button if the lid is closed...
  10. McGiord macrumors 601


    Oct 5, 2003
    Dark Castle
    The battery is still "powering" the computer.
    The power button could be pressed if something is in between the display and the power button.

    Why try to be Indiana McGyver McCool fiddling with the dangers of electricity?
  11. orangezorki thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Aug 30, 2006
    Well call me Indiana McGyver McCool!

    Seriously though, I wasn't happy either with having the battery connected, but as far as I could see, there is a big warning that removing it voids your warranty, and whilst it is out of warranty, I guess it is there for a reason. Anyhow, Apple's instructions don't ask for it, and it did work fine. I've been using it for two days now and it is working fine. So so much for my frying the logic board and 'having' to buy a new maxed out MBP...

  12. killerrobot macrumors 68020


    Jun 7, 2007
    Yeah, that's always a bummer when upgrades work successfully and you lose that excuse to buy new. ;)
  13. realchimera macrumors regular

    Aug 23, 2011
    Computer is not rocket science. Do whatever you want and you can't destroy it.
  14. Resist macrumors 68030

    Jan 15, 2008
    I've installed lots of RAM in my computers over the years. Not once have I ever used a grounding cable or even worried about it and never had an issue. I think unless you purposely rub a balloon on your head to build up a massive static charge, you'll be fine.
  15. gullySn0wCat macrumors 6502

    Dec 7, 2010
    It's quite easy to build up a static charge if you eg walk on carpet.
  16. Prodo123 macrumors 68020


    Nov 18, 2010
    How to ground yourself & keep yourself safe:
    1. Touch metal surface connected to ground (e.g. MBP plugged in). Connect antistatic bracelet to it if desired.
    2. Disconnect MBP PSU and battery.
    3. Mod away.

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