I am new to Mac repair but a pretty skilled PC repair guy (hobby, not job). I have a college student friend with an A-1278 13" late 2008 Macbook that would not boot. He could't remember what happed that made it stop but I said I would look at it for him. When I got it I determined the power button worked and the hard drive spun bbut it would not boot - no chiem, no video. If I helddown the power button it would shut down. I did some research on the net and was pretty well convinced there had to have been some liquid contact. I disaaembled it completely (thanks ifixit!) and cleaned the logic board. I dired it with a blow drier on cool but let it air dry for nearly a week afterward due in part to caution and part to my schedule. When I reassembled and tried the power but I got nothing, period. Dissapointed, I looked up how to start without the power button (I had read about during me research). I tried it (shorting contacts on logic board) and to my suprise it chimed and started up. Everything seemed to work OK except the keyboard. I moved around a bit and realized it was running a Parrallels virtual machine (which I've heard about but know nothing about). I assumed I had simply not connected the keyboard cable completely. I navigated with the mouse to shut down the virtual machine and then navigated to shut down completely so I could check and reseat the keyboard connector. While it was shutting down I left the room for about 30minutes to do a chore for my loively bride. When I returned, I reseated the cable (which was indeed not in completely) and check all of the other ribbon connectors. Satisfied I turned it over and pressed the power button and, again to my surprise, it chimed and started. This time however I got the rgey "Apple" screen and the spinning wheel but it never fully booted. I held down the power button to shut down. I did some research again and it indicated there might be a problem with teh hard drive. Strange but ... I checked the hard drive connector and it was fine so I tried starting again and let it go for a while. Eventually the screen turns blue but the whell just keeps on spinning. I shut down with the power button and did some more research. Unfortunately I don't have the OS disk available so I tried single user boot and ran fcsd. It reports an "invalid key" and quits afer three tries. I am trying to get a hold of a disk but thought I'd throw this out to the experts to chew on ( or laugh at, as the case may be).
Can anybody offer a suggestion for a path forward?