Macbook pro mid 2014 hardware issue?

Posted:
in Genius Bar
Wondering if anyone can help, i have a mid 2014 macbook pro (13" retina) with the new style pcie ssd, recently it started freezing/crashing and when reset it would detect the ssd (flashing folder with question mark), i i assumed the ssd was dying and purchased a new one, which worked for a few minutes on replacing and started doing the same thing, i think the actual pcie port may be dying, as i stuffed a folded piece of paper above the connector before closing the case and it worked for a few hours, but started crashing again.
Does anyone have any ideas besides replacing the logic board? Really dont want to do this as i already had to pay for a new ssd 

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  • Reply 1 of 3
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 6,104administrator
    Wondering if anyone can help, i have a mid 2014 macbook pro (13" retina) with the new style pcie ssd, recently it started freezing/crashing and when reset it would detect the ssd (flashing folder with question mark), i i assumed the ssd was dying and purchased a new one, which worked for a few minutes on replacing and started doing the same thing, i think the actual pcie port may be dying, as i stuffed a folded piece of paper above the connector before closing the case and it worked for a few hours, but started crashing again.
    Does anyone have any ideas besides replacing the logic board? Really dont want to do this as i already had to pay for a new ssd 
    That really sounds like about it, unless you can find a component-level repair shop that will take the job.
  • Reply 2 of 3

    Lost a post that took 30min, was right about to hit submit, when I accidentally (owing to ultra-sensitive trackpad on HP laptop) either swiped back, when I did not want to, or simply caused the page to reload, losing everything in the txt box>>>this has happened a number of times in various use situations, but losing a long post, arrrgh>Hillary, gonna borrow ur sledgehammers and destroy this infuriating HP laptop like a cell phone full of incriminating txt msgs.

    1.    Guessing since AI does not have much of an active brain trust, OP has probably gone elsewhere for answers, assuming they would be in a hurry as I would be/was when I was without my only useable Mac(HP laptop running Winblows is not ‘usable’).


    2.    Probably academic therefore, but my best guess: OP doesn’t give enough info, specific Mac model, installed OSX?, size of SSD, if it was original & manufacturer(since Apple sometimes uses dif manf for their drives throughout a production runs), & what brand of replacement SDD it is, latest firmware updated on this 13” MBP?(this can be very important as in the past firmware updates have solved some problems---data integrity of SSD’s ie, created others).

    3.    OP has enough skills to open up a Macbook pro, but doesn’t use correct terminology> indicating a certain level of tech knowledge, the pci-e “port” in this case is the pci-e drive female “connector” on the MB/logic board. While it is possible this connector was damaged during the installation(buy prying upward too much, breaking pins soldered into the MB), not all that likely. Ifixit has a warning symbol and admonishment to not lift the SSD card upward more than ¼”

     

    However, otherworld computing has a video @2:20 (link below) showing a better method of carefully wiggling side-to-side the ‘blade’ SSD to allow it to be removed>you’d do the same when installing. And to note the owc branded(depending on capacity?) SSD has a white ‘thermal pad’ or heatsink in the middle which they point out must not be touched/altered. No logic I can think of to place a piece of paper/cardboard on the connector or SSD drive, it can only do negative things, perhaps causing thermal hotspots.

     https://eshop.macsales.com/installvideos/macbook_pro_retina_13_inch_2013_2014_2015_ssd/

     

    • Additional Installation Requirements Mac Pro, Mac mini: If you purchased a bare drive for one of these two computers, carefully remove the entire thermal pad before installing the drive. If you purchased the Aura Pro X as part of a kit for one of these two computers, the drive will not include a thermal pad, so no additional steps will be required. MacBook Pro, MacBook Air: Carefully peel the thin plastic liner off the top of the thermal pad before installing the drive. Do NOT remove the thermal pad itself.

     

    For me, I would be needing a working computer within a week, no longer, and this particular situation is likely to take longer, so I would just go buy another MBP, owc has used mid-2014 13” MBP’s, some under $1000, but only 2 with 16GB RAM(I would not touch any computer with <16GB these days) starting @1,500. Then I’d work on getting the problematic MBP working again, and sell it, or give it to family member/friend…or if I felt flush, keep it as a backup to the replacement.

     

    Gave me more time to think, if the contacts in the connector have oxidized enough (you can’t see this visually in many cases), perhaps there is signal shorting going on? Doesn’t cost much to get Deoxit cell phone/battery cleaning kit <$10: http://caig.com, use something xtra soft/thin to swipe the inside contacts on that connector(can’t see how thin it is, but I’d figure a way to get those contacts lightly rubbed to clean up the contacts, never know, could be the cause of the problems? If you bent the contacts inside the connector while removing/installing, it is also possible you have a poor/loose connection across those pins, if that were the case, nothing I could think of would fix it…ergo, wiggle that SSD, do not pry/lift upwards.

    https://www.ifixit.com/Guide/MacBook+Pro+13-Inch+Retina+Display+Mid+2014+SSD+Replacement/27849

    Step 8 above, then see what happens to another in the posts below that article, when they get ‘fake news’(sorry  Admn) about how you can’t replace the SSD, bc it’s soldered to the MB, guess that Apple ‘genius’ was conflating the RAM with SSD, lol.

     

     

    If there is a bootable/external drive USB clone that you can restart the MBP from, then you can run Apple’s hardware testing utility(also not mentioned in OP), or supposedly from the internet via Apple servers…something I have not tried, and would be my last resort as my experience with Apple online/Apple Store/Apple support has been a disasterous waste of my time, nearly 90% of the time over the last decade…and they are getting worse, no matter what you hear on AI.

     

    See this macrumors thread about how external SSD enclosure, owc being one of the few that has such an enclosure, not all manufacturers SSD work in that enclosure: https://forums.macrumors.com/threads/recommend-external-enclosure-for-pcie-flash-storage-from-nmp.1843611/

     

    Apple Diagnostics tests your Mac for hardware issues and suggests solutions

    https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT202731

     

    You may be able to test both of the SSD’s to see if they pass the hardware tests, then you’d eliminate that variable.

     

    https://www.cnet.com/news/how-to-invoke-and-interpret-the-apple-hardware-tests/

     

    Next step after doing above, or maybe should be the 1st step…try to get Apple tech’s/geniuses to do a free system test, see if they could pinpoint the problem without you having to pay for the repair, as you might find buying used @owc, or other, the more prudent solution, if expensive.

     

    When Apple replaced my MB, heatsink, delaminating screen, battery for free, they quoted me a base flat rate, which for 15” rMBP was ~625 or $650 N due to them making a ‘mistake’ took 2 weeks, including 2nd trip service depot for the battery replacement that should have been done @same time---yeah Apple I’m living to 100+ yrs so no prob you make me waste time again n again @Apple store/service/support, higher than the 13”, presumably bc it’s more expensive to replace parts.

     

    https://discussions.apple.com/thread/7735526

     

    My impression was that the cost depended on exactly what Mac you were sending to the depot, but a rough estimate was about half the cost of an In-store motherboard replacement, and they would fix everything on your list.

     

    My estimate was that your Mac might be gone for about 8 days total if all the parts were available.

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    User profile for user: kaz-k

    kaz-k

     

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    Nov 5, 2016 8:57 PM in response to tjk

    Mac notebooks Service Answer Center - Apple Support

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    User profile for user: leroydouglas

    leroydouglas

     

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    Nov 5, 2016 9:07 PM in response to DPR2

    Technically there are 4 pricing tiers to the "Flat rate depot repairs" for Apple's portable computers, depending on the estimated/diagnosed damage.

     

    In or out of warranty you can get a free over the counter 'Apple Service Diagnostics' test, after you have an in store estimate, ask about the "flat rate depot repair"

     

    Genius reservation http://www.apple.com/retail/geniusbar/

     

    on-line https://getsupport.apple.com/GetproductgroupList.action

     

    check warranty https://selfsolve.apple.com/agreementWarrantyDynamic.do

     

    ^reservation for the privelege of having Apple waste my time, takes upwards of 5 days in my area, if you live outside the USA, your options are more limited. I also have not verified that assertion above, best to call ahead, and perhaps save yourself some agrivation if the local Apple service provider will not do as stated above. Authorized service center than has tech's on site, they might be, if they have years of experience, be more knowledgeable than poorly trained Apple geniuses.>>>they may allow to test both SSD's if removed from the MBP,  to verify that those are still working or not. Can't hurt to ask, but do that in person, not over the phone. I spent over 3hrs doing this post, so my applogies for the reckless mess of disorganized formatting, I dont' have any more time to devote, must get some sleep.

    Given my SSD is getting hammered by surfing the net, via Safari &FF, runaway RAM usage, massive swapping going on…only a matter of time b4 that SSD dies…always keep multiple backups>I have too many 256GB USB3.0 thumbdrives already + 128GB drives for backing up the iphone’s.

  • Reply 3 of 3
    Damn, late night brainfart:

    short version:

    1. get some liquid Deoxit, apply small amount to both side of SDD's rows of connnector 'pins'-exposed gold-plated? Wiggle carefully (best to hold the white connector see in the iFixit images with thumb & index finger, hold is tight/steady, then lightly push the blade SSD back into the connector, wiggle it back out, wipe off any extra Deoxit, and repeat several times. <this probably won't fix the problem, but if it does>>>I'm a rockstar. Usually the Mac for Dummies routine of resetting PRAM doesn't work either.

    2. As above, take to Apple 'genius' (don't be surprised if they do not give you very good service @Apple Stores, they employee's are generally poorly trained, have little useful knowledge) see if they will do the free systems test, and determine if both of the SSD's are faulty. Or if you are lucky and independent Authorized service center might be more helpful, YMMV.

    3. Make your decision on whether or not it makes sense to have the logic board replaced, if that is the only option; or buy a replacement used, like those I linked from OWC.


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