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Daniel, Mac Genius
Category: Mac
Satisfied Customers: 4770
Experience:  Apple certified on desktop and portable, help desk qualified. Have owned and used Macs since 1989.
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When I turn on a MacBook pro, it wont boot up - all I hear

Customer Question

When I turn on a MacBook pro, it won't boot up - all I hear is a beeping sound
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Mac
Expert:  Mac Tech replied 5 years ago.
Hi, and thanks for using JustAnswer.

Add this page to your Favorites/Bookmarks first, so as to get back to me anytime later on, if needed.

Please try this first and reply back with the results. Thank you.

Resetting PRAM and NVRAM
  1. Shut down the computer.
  2. Locate the following keys on the keyboard: Command, Option, P, and R. You will need to hold these keys down simultaneously in step 4.
  3. Turn on the computer.
  4. Press and hold the Command-Option-P-R keys. You must press this key combination before the gray screen appears.
  5. Hold the keys down until the computer restarts and you hear the startup sound for the 2nd time.
  6. Release the keys.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.



Expert:  Mac Tech replied 5 years ago.
Your reply was blank. I'll assume that the issue has not been resolved.

Try this next:

STEP #2 Restart in Safe mode
Make sure that the computer is shut down. Press the power button. Immediately after you hear the startup tone, press and hold the Shift key. Release the Shift key when you see the gray Apple and progress indicator. Let the Mac boot up...
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Tried both fixes, neither has worked.

Expert:  Mac Tech replied 5 years ago.
Thank you for your reply.

Make sure that you only have the power cable connected. Unplug any other devices and external monitors.

STEP #3 Run Disk Utility in Single User Mode
Turn your Mac off. Turn it back on and this time hold down the Command (Apple) key and the S keys at the same time. Then type the following command...

/sbin/fsck -fy (note the space between fsck and -fy)

If you can't run /sbin/fsck - fy then type only fsk - fy

Hit return and the disk utility should run and let it finish. When it finishes and there is no error, then type reboot and hit return. Let the Mac boot up. (Disk Utility will fix all system errors, bad preferences files etc)

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

If disk utility doesn't work, then you have to reinstall your Mac OS X. You can do a Archive and Install. Archive and Install will not remove any of your files, applications, settings etc. It just replaces the system files with new ones.

Archive and Install: http://support.apple.com/kb/ht1710

If you are using Snow Leopard discs, there is no Archive and Install for Snow Leopard. So, just insert the disc, restart your Mac and hold down the C key on your keyboard. This will boot into the disc, once it booted into disc then follow the on screen instructions to reinstall your OS X. (This won't delete any of your files).

Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Can't get by anything - there is still the repeating series of three beeps

Expert:  Mac Tech replied 5 years ago.
Have you installed any new hardware to the Mac?

What color is the screen at that point? Can you seeing any activity on the screen?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

We just tried to insert a disc, and could not - don't want to force it. It may be there is a disc jammed in the disc drive - we've tried ejecting, and cannot. Suggestions?

Expert:  Mac Tech replied 5 years ago.
Please reply to my questions as this information is needed to further the troubleshooting.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

No new hardware. Screen is dark - no activity apparent.

Expert:  Mac Tech replied 5 years ago.
If you MBP has a battery follow these steps:
  1. Shut down the computer.
  2. Disconnect the MagSafe power adapter from the computer, if it's connected.
  3. Remove the battery.
  4. Press and hold the power button for 5 seconds.
  5. Release the power button.
  6. Reconnect the battery and MagSafe power adapter.
  7. Press the power button to turn on the computer.
If it does not, follow these steps:
  1. Shut down the computer.
  2. Plug in the MagSafe power adapter to a power source, connecting it to the Mac if its not already connected.
  3. On the built-in keyboard, press the (left side) Shift-Control-Option keys and the power button at the same time.
  4. Release all the keys and the power button at the same time.
  5. Press the power button to turn on the computer.
    Note
    : The LED on the MagSafe power adapter may change states or temporarily turn off when you reset the SMC.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

We've tried both of the above, as best we can, still the same. We still think there may be a disc jammed in the drive. Your thoughts?

Expert:  Mac Tech replied 5 years ago.
Which model MacBook Pro is this?

What version OS X is installed?

How long have you owned it?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

15" macbook pro, three years old, probably running OS 10.5

Expert:  Mac Tech replied 5 years ago.
I will opt out and have another Expert Assist you as I'm out of suggestions. Thank you for your patience.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Thanks - appreciate your effort. We're stumped also.

Expert:  Daniel replied 5 years ago.
Hello, my name is Dan.
I will do my best to help you, the only stupid question is the unasked one.
Beeping usually means hardware, specifically RAM.
How many beeps between pauses?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Three, then pause, then repeats

Expert:  Daniel replied 5 years ago.
That is RAM, you may be able to fix this by removing the RAM and use a pencil eraser to clean the contacts on the RAM card, then replace it in the slot it came from. Make sure that you ground yourself before touching the TAM or you cloud fry it.
Touch the metal chassis several times to do this.
This site will show you how to get to the RAM just match your MPB to the right manual.
More than likely there is a cover in the battery compartment with three screws and the RAM is under that.
If this fails then I suggest a trip to an Apple store and have them take a look or you can replace the RAM here.
They also have manuals for how to do this.
That is what those beeps mean.
Daniel, Mac Genius
Category: Mac
Satisfied Customers: 4770
Experience: Apple certified on desktop and portable, help desk qualified. Have owned and used Macs since 1989.
Daniel and 3 other Mac Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Thanks. We'll try to get the appropriate screwdriver and give this a try. We'll have to sign off for now, until we find the right tools. Thanks again.

Expert:  Daniel replied 5 years ago.
Ok, take care doing it, you need a jewelers number 1 or 2 crosspoint.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

May take a while, but we'll get to it.

Expert:  Daniel replied 5 years ago.
No hurry, I will be on and off tomorrow it being Sunday but I will check in from time to time.

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