I'm disheartened by how many people posting in the past few weeks are having the same problem.
I have a 2010 MacBook Pro, 2.4 GHz Intel Core 2 duo with 4 gigs of memory (plenty of it free). Worked great until several months ago when I went on vacation and it was off the charger for about four days. When I plugged it in and turned it back on, it started the behavior it has done ever since. When I open the lid after sleep (or turn it on after shutdown) it will either:
1) Go to gray startup screen with the apple on it, show the gray "sunshine-type" spinny for numerous seconds, then the spinny will end and disappear and it will be stuck on the gray apple startup screen,
2) The keyboard will light up but the screen will stay black,
3) Much more rarely, it will appear to boot normally but then the cursor will freeze and the screen will behave strangely: broken graphics, "static" like an old TV, crazy scrambled rainbow patches in a window. Spinny beachballs abound.
The only way to resolve it is by SEVERAL hard resets. Every morning I have to patiently turn my computer on three, four, sometimes seven times until it boots properly. If I leave it asleep for more than a couple of hours during the day it will do the same thing. Sometimes on booting the hard drive will make that lovely "landing airplane" noise, which is just fabulous, and is no predictor of whether it will actually boot this time or not. Other times it won't. The problem seems to be getting worse.
I got it to temporarily stop by upgrading my OS to Lion from whatever the earlier one was. Then I left it off the charger for a few days on another trip and the problem started again; reinstalling Lion didn't work this time. I have tried the extended disk check (sorry for nontechnical language, it's 3 AM)-- hardware check, software check, everything suggested in every forum-- all come up clean. Everything is up to date. It seems to me that the suggestions on these forums are all over the map. I don't use Chrome, I don't have the graphics option (it's a 13"), I don't use any of the software people say that when they uninstalled resolved the problem. The only common thread I can really see is that something about the hardware is pure crap.
Needless to say this is very frustrating and disappointing. I too am a huge Apple fan/devotee (I use an iPhone, a Macbook, and my kids have an iMac and an iPad)... loved my first Macbook, and feel kind of let down and betrayed that they sold me this much more expensive Macbook that works whimsically. After all I have seen on these forums, I don't see the point in taking it in to the Genius Bar.... it sounds like they just take your money and assure you they've fixed the problem, and then the next day you're doing ten hard resets again.
Based on when this started for me, my hunch is that running down the battery did something to mess up the machine-- any thoughts on that? Correlation is not necessarily causation, after all.
You described everything very nicely. My mbp has been in the service center since last week and they are trying to diagnose the problem. Luckily i recorded videos of what was happening from my iphone so that they can take a good hard look at whats wrong.
Just spoke to the agent. They have removed the ssd and are testing with the bundled hdd. If this is an ssd issue then i guess its still comething to do with the machine or os x cause many here have mentioned that they have ssds and im sure not all of us are using the same ssd make.
BTW, I also repaired disk permissions and cleaned out the memory cache for Firefox in case that was slowing it down. I have a friend who is the go-to computer repair guy for an entire county, very successful at what he does, and he offered me every suggestion he could think of, all to no avail.
I'm tempted to install Mountain Lion to see if that "fixes" it the way moving to Lion did for a while before, but since that solution didn't last it clearly just patched something that was still broken. I definitely can't bluster to my PC-using friends anymore that Macs are so much more reliable and easy to use... not when I'm having to use folk cures and prayer to try to resurrect my Macbook every morning.
I truly sympathise with you. I have been where you are now & it was not pleasant.
Is your mac covered by apple care? If so take it to the local store asap & get it looked at! From my experience of similar problems this is a hardware fault, and updates & the such like will not help (though others may disagree).
Like you I too am disappointed with Apple. My macbook pro was my first apple product - I had researched apple products and everyone was going on about apple this and mac that so finally after years of deliberating I took the plunge and bought the best machine on offer at the time - it worked beautifully for 11months and then everything that could go wrong did so!
Funny thing is I have an old breeze-block of an IBM - it is from the mid-Jurassic era and it still works perfectly well - only problem after all these years is that its battery lasts no more than 10-15min fully charged. It cost me a fraction of the price of my mac (even back then when computers were very pricey) and it has outlasted the. Not sure what is happening here, are we just unlucky or is the standard at apple manufacturing/research slipping?
I think what drove people from pc to mac was the software(windows vs os x) and i think what will drive people from macs back to pcs, if things continue this way, would be the hardware.
While apples form factor and design out perform any of its competitior in appeal and easy of use, the inner electronics is giving away on quality measure.
3 macbook changes (5 repairs in 1st 2) and 1 in 3rd
2 iphones changed
Ear phones changed 5 times
Ipad nano changed once
Mbp freezes, in service center.
Ipad smart cover worn out from where i hold it in just 2 months
In ear earphones mic and button not working. Apple wont exchange it even while there is a replacement program as the bill isnot within the last 2 years, even thought i had bought it to the store when it was a little over a year old but there was no replacement program.
Magic trackpad wont connect for as long as 10 minutes upon mbp's wake up from sleep. A few weeks back the apple wireless keyboard wouldnt connect!
Apart from these some of the perinnial hardware and software prolems are...
mail wont quit upon shut down
Cmd+opt+esc wont work. Atleast ctrl+alt+dlt works in windows!
Iphone bluetooth and wifi intereference
Iphone 4 call drops due to antennagate. Mine was purchased as late as 27th may'11 on day of its launch in India about a year from its launch in US. Wasnt expecting brand new stock to turn out this way! I guess they shipped the left over junk from antennagate days to India.
Noise in the display lid's hinge in aluminium mbp even after getting it fixed at service center
Mine isn't covered under AppleCare-- even if it had been, I bought it more than a year ago. If people on this thread (and others) could target a specific hardware issue I wouldn't mind paying to have it fixed. What I mind is throwing darts at the problem at random (seven trips to the Genius Bar? Having a computer gone for days or a week and have it return none the better?) without improvement. I will just keep backing up to an external Time Machine, reboot multiple times every day, and hope it's a manageable chronic issue rather than a fatal one. Oh, and warn prospective Mac buyers that Apple lets problems like this exist without coming up with any kind of solution, as I did this morning.
This is my first and last apple product I truly despise buying name brand merchandise they always shortcut you in the end. Mac vs PC who cares linux won just build your own PC its cheaper. Apple I want my money back. Also its an original copy so Android is legit and buy the indiviual parts to build your own PC Ace.
Just called the service center and they told me that the mbp is running fine on the stock hdd. I dont know of any windows users out there having pornlem with ssds or this one particular model i got. I told them if the ssd comes out to be clear from ocz's side its got to something in either lion or mnp 2010 thats cuaing in and thats not being recongnized by AHT.
Thankfully i have the videos. I guess ill have to upload them on youtube for the world to see it.