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If your Mac won't turn on

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Question: start up issue

On powering on, white screen, apple logo in the middle, status bar below the logo, and then it cuts off.

MacBook Pro, OS X El Capitan (10.11.6), early 2008

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Question marked as Helpful

Feb 28, 2018 12:49 PM in response to MagnoliaCreole In response to MagnoliaCreole

What cuts off? Do you mean turns off? Please read Writing an effective Apple Support Communities question.


A Troubleshooting Protocol to Identify Problems or Fix macOS El Capitan or Later

You should try each, one at a time, then test to see if the problem is fixed before going on to the next.


Be sure to backup your files before proceeding if possible.


  1. Shutdown the computer, wait 30 seconds, restart the computer.
  2. Disconnect all third-party peripherals and remove any support software like drivers and plug-ins.
  3. Resetting your Mac’s PRAM and NVRAM
  4. Reset the System Management Controller (SMC)
  5. Start the computer in Safe Mode, then restart normally. This is slower than a standard startup.
  6. Repair the disk by booting from the Recovery HD. Immediately after the chime hold down the Command and R keys until the Utility Menu appears. Choose Disk Utility and click on the Continue button. Select the indented (usually, Macintosh HD) volume entry from the side list. Click on the First Aid button in the toolbar. Wait for the Done button to appear. Quit Disk Utility and return to the Utility Menu. Restart the computer from the Apple Menu.
  7. Create a New User Account Open Users & Groups preferences. Click on the lock icon and enter your Admin password when prompted. On the left under Current User click on the Add [+] button under Login Options. Setup a new Admin user account. Upon completion log out of your current account then log into the new account. If your problems cease, then consider switching to the new account and transferring your files to it - Transferring files from one User Account to another.
  8. Download and install the OS X El Capitan 10.11.6 Combo Update or 10.12.6 Combo Update or Download macOS High Sierra 10.13.3 Combo Update as needed.
  9. Reinstall OS X by booting from the Recovery HD using the Command and R keys. When the Utility Menu appears select Reinstall OS X then click on the Continue button.
  10. Erase and Install OS X Restart the computer. Immediately after the chime hold down the Command and R keys until the Apple logo appears. When the Utility Menu appears:
  1. Select Disk Utility from the Utility Menu and click on Continue button.
  2. When Disk Utility loads select the drive (out-dented entry) from the Device list.
  3. Click on the Erase icon in Disk Utility's toolbar. A panel will drop down.
  4. Set the Format type to APFS (for SSDs only) or Mac OS Extended (Journaled.)
  5. Click on the Apply button, then wait for the Done button to activate and click on it.
  6. Quit Disk Utility and return to the Utility Menu.
  7. Select Reinstall OS X and click on the Continue button.

Question marked as Helpful

Feb 28, 2018 9:16 PM in response to MagnoliaCreole In response to MagnoliaCreole

That is a warning that the drive is failing. This may only be a formatting problem or actual hardware failure. Follow the instruction to back up your files quickly. Once you have done that then I would proceed to an Erase and Install:


Install El Capitan or Later from Scratch


If possible backup your files.


  1. Restart the computer. Immediately after the chime hold down the CommandandRkeys until the Apple logo appears. When the Utility Menu appears:
  2. Select Disk Utility from the Utility Menu and click on Continue button.
  3. When Disk Utility loads select the volume (indented entry, usually Macintosh HD) from the Device list.
  4. Click on the Erase icon in Disk Utility's main window. A panel will drop down.
  5. Set the Format type to APFS (SSDs only) or Mac OS Extended (Journaled.)
  6. Click on the Apply button, then wait for the Done button to activate and click on it.
  7. Quit Disk Utility and return to the Utility Menu.
  8. Select Install OS X and click on the Continue button.


This will install the version of OS X you had installed.


If this fails then you will need to replace the drive.

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Question marked as Helpful

Feb 28, 2018 12:49 PM in response to MagnoliaCreole In response to MagnoliaCreole

What cuts off? Do you mean turns off? Please read Writing an effective Apple Support Communities question.


A Troubleshooting Protocol to Identify Problems or Fix macOS El Capitan or Later

You should try each, one at a time, then test to see if the problem is fixed before going on to the next.


Be sure to backup your files before proceeding if possible.


  1. Shutdown the computer, wait 30 seconds, restart the computer.
  2. Disconnect all third-party peripherals and remove any support software like drivers and plug-ins.
  3. Resetting your Mac’s PRAM and NVRAM
  4. Reset the System Management Controller (SMC)
  5. Start the computer in Safe Mode, then restart normally. This is slower than a standard startup.
  6. Repair the disk by booting from the Recovery HD. Immediately after the chime hold down the Command and R keys until the Utility Menu appears. Choose Disk Utility and click on the Continue button. Select the indented (usually, Macintosh HD) volume entry from the side list. Click on the First Aid button in the toolbar. Wait for the Done button to appear. Quit Disk Utility and return to the Utility Menu. Restart the computer from the Apple Menu.
  7. Create a New User Account Open Users & Groups preferences. Click on the lock icon and enter your Admin password when prompted. On the left under Current User click on the Add [+] button under Login Options. Setup a new Admin user account. Upon completion log out of your current account then log into the new account. If your problems cease, then consider switching to the new account and transferring your files to it - Transferring files from one User Account to another.
  8. Download and install the OS X El Capitan 10.11.6 Combo Update or 10.12.6 Combo Update or Download macOS High Sierra 10.13.3 Combo Update as needed.
  9. Reinstall OS X by booting from the Recovery HD using the Command and R keys. When the Utility Menu appears select Reinstall OS X then click on the Continue button.
  10. Erase and Install OS X Restart the computer. Immediately after the chime hold down the Command and R keys until the Apple logo appears. When the Utility Menu appears:
  1. Select Disk Utility from the Utility Menu and click on Continue button.
  2. When Disk Utility loads select the drive (out-dented entry) from the Device list.
  3. Click on the Erase icon in Disk Utility's toolbar. A panel will drop down.
  4. Set the Format type to APFS (for SSDs only) or Mac OS Extended (Journaled.)
  5. Click on the Apply button, then wait for the Done button to activate and click on it.
  6. Quit Disk Utility and return to the Utility Menu.
  7. Select Reinstall OS X and click on the Continue button.

Feb 28, 2018 12:49 PM

Reply Helpful (1)

Feb 28, 2018 1:00 PM in response to Kappy In response to Kappy

Thank you so much for your response. I followed steps 1-5 without any changes.


Then I did step 6, and held down the COMMAND and R keys as instructed. The computer finally booted. This is the final screen that I’m left with:

Red Octogon sign with an Exclamation Mark inside ‼

The message: Running First Aid___________

First Aid process has failed. If possible back up the data in this volume. Click Done to continue.

Feb 28, 2018 1:00 PM

Reply Helpful
Question marked as Helpful

Feb 28, 2018 9:16 PM in response to MagnoliaCreole In response to MagnoliaCreole

That is a warning that the drive is failing. This may only be a formatting problem or actual hardware failure. Follow the instruction to back up your files quickly. Once you have done that then I would proceed to an Erase and Install:


Install El Capitan or Later from Scratch


If possible backup your files.


  1. Restart the computer. Immediately after the chime hold down the CommandandRkeys until the Apple logo appears. When the Utility Menu appears:
  2. Select Disk Utility from the Utility Menu and click on Continue button.
  3. When Disk Utility loads select the volume (indented entry, usually Macintosh HD) from the Device list.
  4. Click on the Erase icon in Disk Utility's main window. A panel will drop down.
  5. Set the Format type to APFS (SSDs only) or Mac OS Extended (Journaled.)
  6. Click on the Apply button, then wait for the Done button to activate and click on it.
  7. Quit Disk Utility and return to the Utility Menu.
  8. Select Install OS X and click on the Continue button.


This will install the version of OS X you had installed.


If this fails then you will need to replace the drive.

Feb 28, 2018 9:16 PM

Reply Helpful (1)
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Question: start up issue