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Your diagnosis, ladies and gents?

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Patient: 17" 2009 MBP, OSX.6.6, 4GB RAM, had its second internal HD (320GB) transplant 7 weeks ago under Apple Care (so is now on its third HD). Functioned as advertised.

Current symptoms: first sign was a consistent horizontal screen flickering. Force Quit and Relaunch of the Finder seemed to cure that. But since then no BOING chime at startup. Startup takes twice as long as usual. Once up and running, normal operations seem sluggish, though no frequent spinning beach balls seen yet.

What, at first sight, would you say is ailing this MacBook Pro? What would be your recommendation for testing that diagnosis? And what therapy would you suggest if your diagnosis is borne out?
post #2 of 13
I would try rebuilding your caches by holding shift at startup, that takes you into safe mode so reboot after you've reached it. This can help clear graphics glitches if the driver cache isn't right, which could happen if they used a pre-imaged hard drive.

The sound settings for the bong are held in PRAM so hold command-alt-p-r at startup until it reboots a few times and the noise should come back.

If those don't cure it, you may need to get a priest in to read your logic board its last rites.
post #3 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post

I would try rebuilding your caches by holding shift at startup, that takes you into safe mode so reboot after you've reached it. This can help clear graphics glitches if the driver cache isn't right, which could happen if they used a pre-imaged hard drive.

The sound settings for the bong are held in PRAM so hold command-alt-p-r at startup until it reboots a few times and the noise should come back.

If those don't cure it, you may need to get a priest in to read your logic board its last rites.

Cheers, Marvin! The startup chime already came back the first time I booted in Safe Mode. But startup still takes an awful long time. Zapping the PRAM didn't change/improve that, unfortunately.
But sofar I'm glad, because I was already beginning to think my brandnew internal HD was slowly crashing on me (again!).
Thanks again.
post #4 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rokcet Scientist View Post

startup still takes an awful long time.

If you hold down command-v, it will boot up in text mode and this might show you where it's getting hung up.
post #5 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post

If you hold down command-v, it will boot up in text mode and this might show you where it's getting hung up.

When I do that I get a black screen with a lot of fast flowing/scolling text (Unix?), which, after a few seconds disappears whence to the normal startup sequence (asking for password, etc.) resumes/continues.

So I don't have enough time to read/study that text.
Is there a way to log that for later reference?
post #6 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rokcet Scientist View Post

When I do that I get a black screen with a lot of fast flowing/scolling text (Unix?), which, after a few seconds disappears whence to the normal startup sequence (asking for password, etc.) resumes/continues.

So I don't have enough time to read/study that text.
Is there a way to log that for later reference?

Some of the text is stored in the system.log file with timestamps, which you can read using console.app by pulling the left-hand side of the window.

Could there have been a chance that you had a 7200RPM drive in your machine before and they switched it with a 5400RPM?
post #7 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post

Could there have been a chance that you had a 7200RPM drive in your machine before and they switched it with a 5400RPM?

Yes, there could have been a chance they pulled a fast one on me when I had the crashed HD replaced under Apple Care, because I never checked the 'old' HD's specs, TBH.
According to MacTracker this model MBP was shipped with either a 320GB/5400RPM or 320GB/7200RPM eSATA. I don't know which I had.
The current one is a 5400RPM sATA 'TOSHIBA MK3255GSXF'.
Loading times of large graphics files and videos do seem more sluggish than before. But that might also be because the average graphics file is getting bigger and bigger all the time of course. As have videos (these days we handle HD videos daily, we didn't 2 years ago).
post #8 of 13
my guess is you need a new mainboard based on the fact that you're having drive issues on a SATA channel not fixed by drive replacement plus display discrepancies... both of these are controlled by the main bus interface, what traditionally was called the southbridge controller back in the day of two-chip bus control solutions.

why do i think the motherboard's main subsystem bus interface is basically fried? when it boots, it always starts up using the integrated graphics controller no matter your setting (on the 9400M/9600GT it switches to discrete later in the bootup process, if selected), which is built into the same chip that controls the PCI and SATA buses, while the memory controller is built into the CPU and discrete graphics are on a separate graphics chip... bad SATA communication affects booting from the drive while the integrated graphics is throwing up artifacts.

simply put, both systems (integrated graphics and SATA) originate from the same chip and since the drive has been replaced but the problems persist, it's starting to sound like the display issues arent a coincidence... and if not, it's the mainboard.

occam's razor is why i dont think there are separate issues with the display itself and the HDD itself, especially since the issue has been effectively troubleshot through the HDD.
post #9 of 13
Just wondering how old your MBP is meaning in years old, and if this is your first computer?
post #10 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by twl845 View Post

Just wondering how old your MBP is meaning in years old, and if this is your first computer?

If you'd read his post, you'd see that's the first thing he tells us.

And for various reasons, I doubt it's his first.

Originally posted by Marvin

Even if [the 5.5” iPhone] exists, it doesn’t deserve to.
Reply

Originally posted by Marvin

Even if [the 5.5” iPhone] exists, it doesn’t deserve to.
Reply
post #11 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

If you'd read his post, you'd see that's the first thing he tells us.

And for various reasons, I doubt it's his first.

Sorry I don't see it. I see that the HD was replaced 7 weeks ago, but not the age of the machine. I asked if it was his first, remembering the abuse my first computer took, and which might explain why his HD is failing. I see he joined the forum in 2006, so if that's when he bought the computer, that would make it 5 years old. If that's the case, I was going to suggest moving up to a new Mac instead of investing more time in the present one.
post #12 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by twl845 View Post

Sorry I don't see it.

Try again:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rokcet Scientist View Post

Patient: 17" 2009 MBP
post #13 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rokcet Scientist View Post

Try again:

Duh! Thanks.
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