Really weird problem rendering my MacBook almost useless

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by McFreggle, Mar 6, 2016.

  1. McFreggle macrumors 6502a

    McFreggle

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2001
    Location:
    Dendermonde/Leuven, Belgium
    #1
    Hi guys

    I am a Pro Mac user, and have been looking for a solution to a big problem with my Mac all day, and didn't find any solution. I really hope someone here can give me a valuable hint to solve my problem...

    MacBook Pro, late 2013

    The problem suddenly appeared yesterday. I was booting up a Parallels VM, when suddenly my Mac freezes completely: no more mouse movement. I did a hard reset, and tried again. Again: total system freeze.

    I thought it was a Parallels problem, so I reinstalled Parallels, but the problem persisted.
    Then, I noticed it was no Parallels problem, but a wider problem: many other third-party apps also caused my Mac to freeze at startup of the app. For example, every Adobe app also freezes my Mac at startup of the app. Not all third party apps do this. For example, Microsoft Office works fine. And all first-party apps by Apple also work fine. I'm writing this post on my Mac.

    However, there is something seriously wrong. While trying to find a solution, I noticed other problems. Booting my Mac in normal mode succeeds without a problem, but when trying to boot my Mac into safe mode or into Recovery Mode, it just ends with a black screen, after showing the Apple logo and the progress bar for a short time. So I can't boot my Mac into Recovery Mode.

    I did a Disk Check, and everything seems to be fine, no errors found.

    Ultimately, I decided to do a complete reinstall, but that also fails. I tried to boot my Mac from a freshly made El Capitan install volume (on SD card), and this also strands me on a black screen.

    So I have _no idea_ what to do next. I can't keep using my Mac like this because half of my third party apps crash my Mac completely. But I'm unable to do a recovery, or to do a fresh reinstall of my OS.

    Any suggestions what might be wrong, and what I can do about it? Every suggestion is greatly appreciated...
    I'm kind of desperate.

    Thank you!
    Karel

    PS: I don't use Transmission or any other torrent client.
     
  2. garirry macrumors 68000

    garirry

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2013
    Location:
    Canada is my city
    #2
    Just to be sure, this is a Retina MacBook Pro, being it's 2013, right?

    For me, this sounds like either: a storage failure, bad RAM, or system corruption.

    First, I would recommend re-installing the system through Internet Recovery: Hold Option+Command+R on bootup, format the drive (if you were smart enough to make a Time Machine backup, data loss should not be a problem), and install from there. If it fails, then it looks like something has gone wrong in terms of the computer itself, either the RAM has gone bad (too bad you can't replace it, ughhh), or something else regarding the logic board has, so your only option here is to bring it to the Apple Store (if you have one in your country) and hope they fix it, or at least diagnose. If it does work, then either the system was just corrupted or something, so that's not a big deal (however, when restoring from your backup, you might check to see there isn't something other than the OS that's causing the wreck), but it could well be a storage issue, which means you'll have to get it replaced, which is a total pain to do.

    I hope this helps, and good luck with fixing the computer.
     
  3. McFreggle thread starter macrumors 6502a

    McFreggle

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2001
    Location:
    Dendermonde/Leuven, Belgium
    #3
    Yes indeed, it's a retina MacBook Pro. And data loss is no problem since I have good backups.

    Thank you for your detailed answer! I will try Internet Recovery as a last resort. However, I don't hold my hope up high, since I don't see how that's very different from trying to recover through a freshly made SD install disk. But I hope I'm wrong!

    Can't try it out now since I'm on my way to work, but I will try it out tonight when I get home. Fingers crossed!
     
  4. McFreggle thread starter macrumors 6502a

    McFreggle

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2001
    Location:
    Dendermonde/Leuven, Belgium
    #4
    Alas... I'm writing this post from my old Windows pc.
    My Mac is completely broken right now.

    The Internet Recovery tip was helpful: my machine managed to boot into a Mavericks Recovery Mode. However, mouse movements were very, very, very slow. But I succeeded to lauch the Disk Utility, to check my drive for errors (there were some) and to fix them.

    This didn't fix the problem, however. So I formatted my drive. When trying to reinstall OS X from the recovery mode, it told me my Mac couldn't be checked at Apple. So I tried to restore my Time Machine Backup, and I got an error saying "An error occured while adding a recovery system to the destination disk."

    I thought my Macintosh SSD must be corrupted, so I tried to install OS X on an external drive, but this also failed (same error)...

    It seems I have a hardware problem I can't solve myself. My only resort is to create a Maverickx install disc, and to try and boot from that one.

    Every suggestion is greatly appreciated...
     
  5. joe-h2o macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2012
    #5
    It sounds like your SSD is failing. I would run the hardware test mode (boot your machine and immediately press and hold "D" to have it boot into the Apple diagnostic tool) and see if it flags anything.

    My suspicion is the SSD, which if that is the case can be easily fixed since the drive is replaceable, and will even be free (most likely) if you have AppleCare still covering your machine.

    If you have an external drive that you can use as a test unit you could install OS X on that and see what happens. If you manage to install and boot it from the external drive and it runs ok without crashing then it's almost definitely the internal SSD that has a fault.
     
  6. McFreggle thread starter macrumors 6502a

    McFreggle

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2001
    Location:
    Dendermonde/Leuven, Belgium
    #6
    It must be a hardware problem, but I'm thinking it's the RAM.

    After much effort, I succeeded to do a clean install of Mavericks. Everything runs fine, until I start certain applications, causing the clean Mac to freeze again.

    I did a diagnostics boot test, but no problems were found. I will try to install OS X on an external hard disk and see what that gives, but I'm afraid I will have to take it to my local Mac dealer and hear what the options are. Replacing memory on a retina MBP is a pain.

    Sigh.
     
  7. garirry macrumors 68000

    garirry

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2013
    Location:
    Canada is my city
    #7
    Unfortunately, it is impossible to replace the RAM in the rMBP, as it is soldered onto the board (it is technically possible to swap the RAM chips for new ones, but that is such a complex operation it is physically impossible to do by hand). This is why I hate soldered RAM, Apple.
     
  8. McFreggle thread starter macrumors 6502a

    McFreggle

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2001
    Location:
    Dendermonde/Leuven, Belgium
    #8
    Well, I'm already in touch with my local Apple dealer, and they tell me if the RAM is the problem, they will have to replace the entire motherboard... :eek::(
     
  9. Dead0k macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2015
    Location:
    Poland
    #9
    this could happen with HDD (but not in your case) or by dGPU. And yes.. in every case they will have to replace the whole motherboard in your laptop.

    RAM is a possible choice.. but i think i is applicable to removable ram.

    Check cooling system and temperatures under VM
    Try another VM soft.
     
  10. McFreggle thread starter macrumors 6502a

    McFreggle

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2001
    Location:
    Dendermonde/Leuven, Belgium
    #10
    GPU is also a possibility, indeed...

    VM is not causing the problem. That was how I initially noticed the problem, but on a clean install my Mac even crashes when launching the Grapher application or the El Capitan install program.
     
  11. McFreggle thread starter macrumors 6502a

    McFreggle

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2001
    Location:
    Dendermonde/Leuven, Belgium
    #12
  12. chipchen macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2002
    #13
    You've got me stumped as well. I'm also inclined to think that this is GPU or RAM related and would thus require a logic board. The good news though, is that Apple has flat-rate repairs when shipping this into the repair depot. It would run you about $325 direct through Apple whereas an Apple Authorized Service Provider would charge parts+labor and would probably run closer to $650.

    One more thing to try... Remove the SSD. Open the bottom up, remove the SSD. That's really the only equation you can do to change things (since you can't test new RAM or GPU). I have seen, in my tenure as an Apple person, where a severely corrupted hard drive can cause the wierdest issues and still act normal sometimes long enough to make you question your sanity. If you remove the SSD you can try to install onto an external and see how it runs.
     
  13. McFreggle thread starter macrumors 6502a

    McFreggle

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2001
    Location:
    Dendermonde/Leuven, Belgium
    #14
    Thank you for the tip, but I can't try it out anymore - my computer is in the hands of Apple now...

    I'm restoring my backup to an old MacBook Pro as we speak. 9 hours remaining... :rolleyes:
     

Share This Page