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So the factory 500GB hard drive in my early-2011 MBP recently died, it would not boot up and was stuck on a question mark logo. Booted up using a lion...
05-02-2012, 12:44 PM #1
MBP problems w/ internal SATA drive
So the factory 500GB hard drive in my early-2011 MBP recently died, it would not boot up and was stuck on a question mark logo. Booted up using a lion USB stick, the drive itself was recognized, but none of the partitions.
I thought the drive died so I went out and purchased a new HD to replace it with. I installed lion on the new drive using an external enclosure then installed it inside, when booted it would get stuck on the gray screen then the same question mark icon would come up. Went into disk utility, sure enough the drive itself was recognized but none of the partitions were recognized.
When I tried to format the new drive, it would get stuck on "unmounting disk" then end up with an error "unable to write to last block of the device"....
So I borrowed a friend's white MB, put in my original 500GB drive and everything booted up perfectly... boot camp too.. all my files were there 100% intact. Put in the new HD with the fresh lion install and that booted up 100% perfectly as well.
I brought it into the apple store and of course the genius bar is useless as usual. They are going to replace my original 500GB drive with a new one because they think the problem lies on the HD, when after all this testing I believe the problem cannot be the HD. Oh well, no downside to a free 750GB 7200RPM hard drive.
So from fiddling around, I found out that The 500GB drive and the new HD boot 100% perfectly fine in an external USB enclosure connected to my MBP. But neither will boot when connected to the internal SATA connection. Although the original apple HD does get farther along the boot/install/disk utility process, neither actually works/is usable.
What could be the problem? Could it be the HD ribbon cable that is damaged?
EDIT: Title isn't accurate, should be "MBP problems w/ internal SATA drive"
Last edited by velocity211; 05-02-2012 at 01:02 PM.
05-02-2012, 04:18 PM #2
05-03-2012, 06:50 PM #3
So I brought it into the genius bar again yesterday, I told them I'm 80% sure it's the SATA cable that needs replacement. Picked it up this morning with a new hard drive and new cable. Went home and swapped in my Momentus XT, everything works like new! I'm so glad this happened now and not in 4 days because that's when my warranty expires!