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Macbook Pro won't start up

4553 Views 10 Replies Latest reply: Aug 13, 2013 2:27 PM by bowlerboy RSS
_given Calculating status...
Currently Being Moderated
Feb 22, 2012 10:33 AM

I own a Macbook Pro 15'' (late 2008) which stopped working suddenlly.

When I turn it on, the frontal light turns on but the screen and other internal componentes don't seem to work. I don't hear the cooler nor any other Macbook's characteristic start up sounds.

If I hold the power up button down, it turns off, but without any sound or screenflash. I tried turning it on repeatedly and all that happens is the little frontal light say hello.

Any idea of what could be the problem?

 

Thanks in advance!

MacBook Pro, Mac OS X (10.7.3)
  • mpumz Level 1 Level 1 (40 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 22, 2012 11:54 AM (in response to _given)

    nothing comes on the screen? not even a folder with a question mark or ?

  • Former Landlord Calculating status...
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    Feb 22, 2012 4:40 PM (in response to _given)

    I have same Macbook Pro 15" late 2008.  Power is good.  Battery is good.  Try to power and I do hear hard drive try but then shuts down.  Tried to load hardware test disc but will not load.  When I power up holding "D" key, hard drive LED lights for 3 to 4 seconds, then flashes quickly, difficult to count, maybe 14 times!  Then shuts down.  I figure that LED flashing indication must identify the problem.  Anyone know?  Screen always black.  From other source I read, Ram maybe only thing to check.  I may have bad GPU or CPU, both non-replacable soldered in parts.

  • mpumz Level 1 Level 1 (40 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 22, 2012 11:05 PM (in response to _given)

    If you're not getting any screen message then maybe you should take it to the genius bar, l have no idea there sorry

  • Former Landlord Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 23, 2012 6:48 AM (in response to mpumz)

    Hello.  I Tested with one stick of RAM at a time and no change in symptoms.  So I am thinking its GPU or CPU as was posted on Mac Rumours forum.  It makes sense to me.  If CPU is bad how can it do the very first thing it needs to do, a power on self test.  I am thinking the power on self test fails and it shuts down.  I think I am going to remove hard drive and install it in my late 2011 Mac Book Pro so my daughter can get all of her info back.  But I am not certain as I will void the 2011 warrenty.  I may try the genius bar in Short Hills NJ.  I told my daughter a number of times, keep the laptop off the bed.  She may have stressed it with too much heat due to lack of ventilation.  Thanks for help.  Goodbye.

  • mpumz Level 1 Level 1 (40 points)
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    Feb 23, 2012 8:43 AM (in response to Former Landlord)

    Could be, all the best and hopefully the genius bar may come up with a simple solution or probable cause

  • Mack McMac Calculating status...
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    Apr 12, 2012 1:31 PM (in response to _given)

    I just had the same problem with my MacBook Pro 15" early 2008 (266 mhz). I was frustrated because nobody came back to leave an answer for us poor saps who have the problem later. First I tried the remove the battery and power cord and hold down power key, solution. No luck.

     

    So, I too went the the 'Genius Bar' to sip a Latte Knowledge.  Here's the deal:  There is an apparent problem between the power button and the logic board which could be -

    • a problem with the power button, but I was getting power briefly so that's not it
    • a problem with the power board, he removed the ram and DVD and HD kept spinning trying to boot - not the power board
    • a problem with the logic board - of course it's the most expensive thing to fix (but cheaper than a new Mac) But my logic board was bad.  The Apple Store offered to ship & fix for $310 but could not guarantee HD data would be intact. So I am getting a friend to copy the HD, then I'll take it to Apple Store for repair.  At this time he said 7 days or less to get it back.

     

    I hope this helps someone else. Sorry that there's not a quick home fix but at least you can quit Googling and make an appointment or make arrangements. It could be worse. At least it's not the hard drive!

  • Former Landlord Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 13, 2012 7:49 PM (in response to Mack McMac)

    Another option is to contact L2 Computer Inc. 726 10th Ave. in NYC.  From their web site, you will see pricing on their work including logic board repair.  I live in NJ, drove the laptop in on a Friday, got a call Sunday evening that it was ready for pick up.  L2 has the machine to troubleshoot and repair the logic board.  Sending to Apple is probably a good option as well, and L2 told me a week to repair too.  They came back with a great turnaround time a repair to complete satisfaction.  If you need, they will remove your hard drive and hand it to you, or you can send it without the hard drive.  They do not need it to make the repair.  There is absolutely no reason for the hard drive to loose data other than damage to it.  I would search the internet, maybe Other World Computing, for instructions on removing the hard drive if you feel comfortable with that.  Always use ANTI-STATIC PROTECTION AND PLACE THE HARD DRIVE IN AN ANTI-STATIC BAG.  If not comfortable, ship with lots of bubble wrap, UPS, and insure.  DO backup your data, ALWAYS back up you data.  Expect a Chineese accent if you call L2 Computer.

  • SinMiPii Calculating status...
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jul 7, 2012 2:40 PM (in response to _given)

    My late 2008 macbook pro is exhibiting the same characteristics:

     

    (1) indication of full battery & magsafe charger indicates charge ngoing

    (2) solid white power light on lower right hand front face of keyboard deck, and

    (3) the sound of cooling fan? or HDD? spinning front right side of keyboard above power light

    (4) no indication the CPU is executing a typical boot up sequence e.g. irritating sound of  DVD drive at startup. 

     

    Time to make the trip to genius bar  - Hope to have same exceptional support that I received with failed iMac.

     

    For ref:  Attempted following 2 actions without success:

     

    (1) removed the battery, reset the SMC per Apple online tech support article: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT3964?viewlocale=en_US

    (2) tried to run the Apple Hardware test (press & hold "D" at start up ) but no indication it was executed. 

     

    One nugget of interest found during TS review was reported failure of NVIDIA GeForce 8600M GT graphics processor in late 2008 MBPs. The following article http://support.apple.com/kb/TS2377 states If the NVIDIA graphics processor in your MacBook Pro has failed, or fails within four years of the original date of purchase, a repair will be done free of charge, even if your MacBook Pro is out of warranty.

  • bowlerboy Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Aug 13, 2013 2:27 PM (in response to Former Landlord)

    I would not recommend using L2 Computer, unless you are really desperate, out of options, and willing to lose your money while subjecting yourself to even more frustration. I became so upset with L2 Computer that I posted a review on MacRumors and on Yelp. Look it over, and decide for yourself.

     

    Regarding L2 Computer, Inc. and inadequate repair work

     

    Beware of repair shops that provide inadequate warranty policies to cover up their incomplete, or sub-standard, work. If you do business with such shops, you will only expose yourself to unnecessary frustration and disappointment.

     

    Unfortunately, L2 Computer Inc. appears to be one such computer repair shop.

     

    L2 Computer only provides a 30-day warranty to cover their repairs. While you may think that such a chintzy warranty policy is par for the course, when you really examine it, you will conclude that it is not.

     

    If your computer breaks down within that 30-day warranty, L2 Computer will repair it again for free. However, if your allegedly repaired computer begins to fail after 30 days and you are foolish enough to send it back to L2 Computer again to fix the problem(s) you had pre-paid them full price to fix the first time around, then they will charge you yet again to do the repairs--this time at a "discount" for half of the original price you had paid. (Plus shipping charges, of course.)

     

    And, if your computer manages to work OK for six months, but it again becomes so dysfunctional that it drives you crazy, you can send your ailing computer back to L2 Computer, but you will have to pay full price once again, because the clock gets reset at that six-month point. So, if they don't get you for half-price after the 30 days milestone, they have a chance to milk you for more money after 6 months have elapsed--if you're dumb enough to fall for their game, that is. That's some business model!

     

    I speak from experience. I sent a PowerPC-based iMac G5 to L2 Computer for repair, because it would not start up. I would hear a chime, but the computer would not go further than the black screen which accompanied the start-up chime.

     

    Within about four weeks, L2 Computer returned my iMac G5 to me, and, I must admit, I was initially pleased to see that it would start up. My first impression was that I thought they were miracle workers. But that first impression soon faded with time. Although the allegedly newly repaired iMac G5 took a lot longer to start up than before, and although it would occasionally crash for no reason I could discern, for the most part, I was pleased to observe that they appeared to have breathed new life into my computer. That was my experience during the first month.

     

    The iMac G5 was at least able to start-up (on occasion), but it definitely did not behave as if it were new, or completely fixed. Since a local shop to which I had taken the iMac G5 for repair could not do anything with it during the six months they had it in their possession but tell me that "something" was wrong with the motherboard, for which they charged me about $100 as a "diagnostics" fee, I was thankful for the small favor which L2 Computer gave me. I felt that I could tolerate an occasional freeze-up or random crash just to get the **** thing to start-up at all.

     

    However, in the second month of service, the iMac G5 began to freeze up and crash more often. Sometimes, it would simply refuse to start-up, too. The iMac G5 would either never get to a gray screen, or if it did reach a gray screen, the gear would not spin. Or, if the gear did spin, it would stop spinning within a few seconds, but never advance beyond that point.

     

    Sometimes, the fan would just kick in moments after I pressed the power on button.When the fan kicked in, the start-up process was doomed: the iMac G5 would never start-up after that, as if the lazy computer was laughing at me, saying "Stop trying to put me to work, I just want to stay cool and refreshed."

     

    Sometimes, I could get the iMac G5 to start-up by holding down the Option key during the start-up process and selecting either the Leopard or Panther partition as my start-up volume. That technique did not always work, however. When it did work, the iMac G5 would hum along for a little while--maybe for a few minutes, maybe for a few hours--but it would inevitably freeze up, compelling me to perform a Forced Shut Down by holding in the Power ON button for several seconds.

     

    By the third month of service, the frequency of the iMac's refusal to start-up increased faster than a spoiled child yelling and screaming for attention. So did the frequency of the freezes during those few times I did somehow manage--usually after several attempts--to get the iMac to start-up.

     

    I tried to see if there was a pattern in the freezes, but there was none. The iMac would crash for no reason at all, whether I was in the Finder or browsing the web, or using some other application. The cursor would freeze; the clock would stop; the fan would kick in (or not); and my only recourse then was to force it to shut down.

     

    For a computer as lazy as this one was turning out to be, the iMac G5 would never go into Sleep mode. This was true from the first day I received the computer from L2 Computer. Although it had no problem sleeping in its previous incarnation before the trouble occurred, now, after being "repaired" by L2 Computer, it could not go to sleep.

     

    Often, after the screen saver kicked in due to inactivity, followed by a black screen, the computer would become unresponsive to any attempt to activate it, even though the power was on. Sometimes, the iMac would just freeze up and kick the fan on, again as if to say: "I'm tired, and I'm going to cool myself off, sucker. You better press the Power ON button now, because I'm done working today." Sometimes the computer would freeze while the screensaver was running, turning the normally flowing flurries into a static, dead image.

     

    In my attempts to trouble-shoot the problem over these past three months without bothering the repair shop once again, I ran my hard disk maintenance utility software (TechTool Pro; DiskWarrior; Drive Genius) dozens of times, but that did not work in solving the underlying problem. Using Firewire, I would occasionally start-up the computer from the external hard drive clones created by SuperDuper, but using a different hard drive as the start-up volume did not solve the problem either.

     

    I tried optimizing the hard drive to eliminate file fragmentation. That did not help. I rebuilt the directory dozens of times, using the DiskWarrior CD as my startup disk. That did not help. 

     

    Finally, I even used the original Leopard installation DVD to Archive and Install a fresh operating system, but did not solve the problem either. The start-up procedure is still a crap shoot: you never know for sure if this particular roll of the dice will result in a successful start-up. Even with a brand new operating system, the freezing-up occurs at random times with no discernible pattern.

     

    After spending innumerable hours trying to trouble-shoot the problem over the three months since L2 Computer "repaired" my iMac, I reluctantly arrived at the conclusion that my iMac G5's problem must be hardware-related. Unfortunately, this means that L2 Computer had essentially failed to do the job for which I had pre-paid them. Although I might have initially been impressed with their magic, it did not take very long before I began to curse and condemn them for releasing such shoddy work to me.

     

    When L2 Computer shipped my computer back to me, they did not include a report on what they had done. So, their "repairs" were a bit of a mystery to me. I had pre-paid them $327.15, and I had spent another $28.75 for UPS shipping. That's a lot of money. But,  as I was weighing my options regarding what to do with my iMac, I had decided that repairing my old iMac G5 would be much cheaper than buying a new Intel Mac computer, especially when I had to factor in all the new software applications I'd have to get to run on it to get an equivalent level of productivity. So, I opted for the repair, with the hope and the expectation that the problem would be fixed once and for all.

     

    By believing that L2 Computer really does have, as they declare on their website when you are about to place an order, an "over 90% success rate on our logic board repairs," I trusted them to solve my computer's problem. I now realize that I was wrong. My trust was misplaced—both in their technical expertise and in their business policy.

     

    Additionally, I had relied too heavily on the positive testimonials posted on the L2 Computer website, all of which had, naturally, been approved ahead of time by L2 Computer management, since there were no critical comments whatsoever to give a new customer a balanced perspective. My comments are intended to balance off those glowing remarks, if, indeed, any of them are genuine.

     

    Some people might ask, "Why did you not contact them sooner, when you first recognized problems?" My answer is that, although I did encounter all of these problems during the initial 30-day warranty period, the rate at which the start-up failures and the freeze-ups occurred, while troublesome, was not as frequent, nor as alarming, as they became after that 30 days warranty period. I thought that I could live with them.

     

    Besides, I consider it essential that a Mac user must perform his due diligence prior to complaining to a computer repair shop that their so-called repair was nothing but a temporary band-aid that did not really or completely solve the original problem I presented to them. I needed more information, more ammunition, with which to complain to them that their work turned out to be unsatisfactory and that the ethical thing for them to do is to make good on the job for which I paid them a hefty amount of money.

     

    Having exceeded my limit of tolerance with all the false start-ups and the random, out-of-nowhere freezes and crashes, I finally decided to call them and report my experience with my computer since they "repaired" it. In the course of my conversation, I naturally asked them to make good on their work, to give me back a fully functioning computer that would not drive me crazy every time I wanted to use it.

     

    No, they said today (July 14, 2013), we won't do any more repairs on your iMac G5 unless you pay us once again. This time, however, we will only charge you 50% of what you originally paid, because your 30-day warranty period--during which we would have made further repairs for free--has expired. That's our policy, and we're sticking to it, the customer service rep insisted.

     

    When I complained that L2 Computer obviously had not done the job right the first time and that, from an ethical standpoint, they ought to have the integrity to stand by their work, they steadfastly refused to make good on their work without further payment. I warned the customer service representative with whom I spoke that he better consult his manager before holding so firmly to his company's 30-day warranty policy else I would write a detailed, negative report on my dealings with L2 Computer. He put me on hold several times as he consulted with his boss, but the manager also failed to see the big picture of how important it is to make customers happy: the best his manager could do, said the rep, was to knock of $20 from their 50% repair fee, effectively asking me to pay them another $150 (plus shipping) to do the job right.

     

    No way, I said. "Why should I pay you more money to fix a problem that you failed to adequately analyze and solve the first time around," I asked?

     

    "Why should I pay you more money in order to once again subject myself to your unreasonable 30-day warranty period, when I have absolutely no confidence that you can do the job right, or that the computer will be fixed for the long-term, without requiring additional band-aid repairs like the one you previously performed? Do you think that I'm so foolish that I will let you milk me for money forever?"

     

    I asked the customer service rep if he ever read the reviews customers posted on Amazon.com about products they were considering buying. He said yes, he did. I then asked him if he thought potential buyers were influenced by negative comments that exposed the weaknesses and flaws of the product. He again said yes.

     

    To be fair, I then cautioned him that I would write a very negative report of my experience with L2 Computer. I also warned him that their failure to modify their repair policy to the point that they would truly stand by their work could end up costing them lots of lost revenue. I also told him that L2 Computer is not the only repair shop providing laptop and computer repair. My choice came down to them or a repair shop in California, I said, and I chose L2 Computer only because I live in New York, and because L2 Computer's service fee and the shipping charges were cheaper, by comparison. In retrospect, that was my first mistake!

     

    Neither the customer service rep nor his manager would be swayed by my threat to publish a scathingly negative, but honest, review. So, the conversation with them ended, and my conversation with potential customers like you begins.

     

    I sent them a copy of this review, and I gave them one month's grace in which to come to their senses and respond in a positive way. Since they failed to do so, I have decided to go along and publish my report for all would-be customers to take into consideration before sending them your computer.

     

    You have just been warned! If you still want to give your business to a repair shop like that, at least you know what you will have to deal with, should you, too, find yourself at the losing end of an unsatisfactory, unfulfilling transaction. You'll have only yourself to blame for trying to beat the odds.

     

    As for me, I will not be sending my iMac in to L2 Computer, Inc. for any additional repairs. I will either retire it, or send it elsewhere for repair. As I explained to the customer service rep, if I were to send my iMac G5 back to L2 Computer, it would be like taking my car back to a mechanic who had put inferior parts in my car--parts that would last through the 30 days of his repair shop's "policy," but whose parts would fail soon after that warranty period expired, either because his diagnosis skills were inadequate, or his parts were inferior, or both.

     

    In short, L2 Computer fooled me once: I won't let them do it again. You'd think that after all my complaining, along with several other negative reviews written by other customers, L2 Computer would get the point and extend their warranty period to a respectable six months. If they did that, I assured him, L2 Computer would garner all of the business in the country, because a warranty like commands respect. It trumpets the fact that the technicians know their work and that the managers stand for quality.

     

    However, instead of taking the high road, L2 Computer is electing to stick with its unfair, unethical 30-day honeymoon period warranty policy. Instead of learning from their mistakes; they want customers like me to pay for them.  Well, I refuse to do that. So, I hope that this review, along with others like it, will teach them a lesson where they can best understand it: in their pocketbook, due to lost revenue from potential customers who turned away from them.

     

    I hate to come across as stereotypical or disparaging about the economic policies which drive one of major competitor nations, but all Americans know that China floods the United States market with a lot of cheap and ultimately inferior products. L2 Computer Inc., being a Chinese owned-and-operated shop, no doubt draws upon such sub-standard manufacturing techniques and philosophies, a fact which was verified to me when I called the shop after several weeks had elapsed during their repairs on my computer to inquire about the reason for the delay. I was told that they were waiting for parts from China. Great! Just what my computer needs: a part that doesn't fit or won't work for very long.

     

    Today, in the absence of a written report accompanying my computer, I learned that L2 Computer Inc "fixed" my iMac's original problem by installing three new capacitors and "repairing" the original video card. Then, during their testing, since the computer started-up, they considered the problem solved, so they shipped it off to me.

     

    Obviously, they were wrong then. And they are wrong now. If L2 Computer deludes itself into believing that I will trust them to put yet more inferior replacement parts that might actually work for 30 days, but will likely fail within a short time after that, then they are behaving as irrationally as my computer is. Forcing unsophisticated customers to consider throwing more good money at a problem, which, like a calculus, they may never be able to truly and completely solve, is not a good business policy.

     

    Since such a business policy is lacking in integrity, it certainly does not inspire confidence and respect. Regardless of the business one is engaged in, people who do good quality work always stand behind their work: they don't try to extort more money from their customers due to their incompetence and their failure to do the job right the first time!

     

    I've lived in the Far East for over four years as a Peace Corps Volunteer, so I tend to see L2 Computer's failure to understand not so much as a cultural problem, though there may be an element of that occurring which is making it impossible for L2 Computer's management to grasp what a lousy warranty policy they have, but as a problem of individual, short-sighted, somewhat greedy human beings. Accordingly, I tend to see their short-sightedness as an example of a poorly managed business enterprise. I cannot support such a business.

     

    On its website, L2 Computer states that they "have over 90% success rate on our logic board repairs." You would think that a company which could boast such success would also have the integrity to make good on the other 10% in order to assert their service as one to be trusted. Apparently not. Their short-sighted vision won't allow them to see that far.

     

    Of course, who really knows what their true success rate is? L2 Computer can claim whatever they want, but to prove fraud, someone would need to examine their books and do a proper account. I'm not about to do that. Why should I bother? Just putting out the word should be sufficient to the wise.

     

    Besides, customers desperate to have their computers fixed tend to believe success stories because that's what they want to believe: whether they're being told the truth or not is another story.

     

    I just shared my story with you. Do with it what you will.

     

    But, as I said in the beginning, beware. Be aware.

     

    John-Michael Battaglia

     

     

    P.S. For more revealing insights into the L2 Computer operation, you can do a Google search for "l2 computer inc review" and follow the links you find there.

     

    I have included links to a few of those reviews below. I only wish I had come across such warnings about L2 Computer prior to electing to do business with them. Now I know that my experience with L2 Computer is not an isolated incident: it is their standard way of doing business.

     

    L2 Computers, 9sky, dqsales: Fraud and theft. New York, New York.

    http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/L2-Computers/New-York-New-York-10019/L2-Computers- 9sky-dqsales-Fraud-and-theft-New-York-New-York-747947

     

    Better Business Bureau reports

    http://www.bbb.org/NYC/business-reviews/computers-supplies-and-parts/l2-computer -inc-in-new-york-ny-128132/

     

    Yelp

    http://www.yelp.com/biz/l2-computer-manhattan-2

     

    Mac Rumors: L2 Computer Inc. - Anyone ever use them before?

    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1255451

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