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MacBook Pro can't start, displays just spinning wheel. Help?

by Gloria SP / September 2, 2010 12:54 PM PDT

When tried to start MacbookPro it produced the usual startup sound , then displayed a grey screen with the Apple logo but the startup process stopped here with a spinning wheel under the logo.
I left it to see if it will start anyway but the computer just does not proceed with the startup, the wheel is still spinning on and on .
I can't restart it by unplugging the power because the battery can not be eliminated.

Can't try PRAM reset at the start - the machine is just frozen in this state with the spinning wheel on screen and I have no access to it at all.

I guess I can't use the manufacturer's startup disk because the computer is stuck in the middle this startup process.

MacbookPro is Intel based and runs on OSX 10.6.

Extra info: yesterday I had problem with System Preferences panel where for no apparent reason it was not possible to open the padlocks despite of the fact I have admin access , then I shut the Mac down and noticed that it takes longer than usual to shut down - don't know if this is related to the current startup problem but I'm not a techie and just don't know...

How to restart this laptop? Any help , please?

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Hold down the Power Button until the machine shuts down
by mrmacfixit Forum moderator / September 2, 2010 10:02 PM PDT

We went through this yesterday.

To reset the PRAM, hold down the Command + Option + P + R keys at the first chime.
Keep them down until the third chime.

Try restarting in Safe Mode. Hold down the Shift key at the first chime and keep it down. Release when booted.

To remove the disk, hold down the mouse button, or whatever passes for a mouse button on your trackpad, at the first chime, keep it down and the CD should eject


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(NT) Hello!
by mrmacfixit Forum moderator / September 5, 2010 8:46 AM PDT
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use fire wire to retrieve your files
by LadyJewell21 / September 18, 2010 7:56 AM PDT

Hello. I have the same problem (twice now) with my imac and i'm not sure if you have tried the other suggestions but if you have, and they did not work (like me) I thought you should know that you can connect a firewire cord from your mac to another mac turning your laptop into a hard drive if you need to pull files out of it before restoring with the original operating system disc. Here's how to do it...
Have one end of the fire wire cord connected to the frozen laptop; turn it on while holding "T" until you see a symbol that moves around on the screen then let go. Then plug the other end of the fire wire cord into a healthy mac and you should see your frozen mac in finder as a hard drive. Copy paste or drag and drop your files until you are satisfied you have everything you need. Disconnect by clicking the arrow beside the name of the laptop (now a hard drive). Proceed with restoring your frozen laptop. Hope this helps!

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Thank you LadyJewell21
by Gloria SP / September 22, 2010 6:06 PM PDT

Thank you LadyJewell21

That's something really smart!!!!
Did try it and it works !!!

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But that does not solve the problem you posted,
by mrmacfixit Forum moderator / September 22, 2010 9:59 PM PDT
In reply to: Thank you LadyJewell21

what is the progress on that?


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