Resolving Macbook Problems

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These are solutions for any sorts of old mac problems especially to do with:

  • unexplained power outages
  • sudden darkening of screen
  • kernel panics

Disconnect ALL external devices

Speakers and mouses should all be disconnected esp if they have their own power source.

Take out the battery

Download and install a utility called CoconutBattery to see what is the state of your battery. If your battery is old and not working (meaning that you have to plug it in all the time), then take it out completely.

Resetting SMC

Remove magsafe power cord from macbook. Wait 15 seconds. Then press the power button for at least 5 seconds. Then reconnect the cable and turn on as normal.

Zapping PRAM

Press power on. Immediately hold down Command-Option-P-R. if you hold it down, the chime will play over and over again. after you hear the 3rd chime let go of the keys and let it go on as usual.


Old Intel-based Macbooks may have a strange buzzing sound coming from the location of the Esc key. Put your ear to the esc key if you don't believe its coming from that key. Anyway running quietmbp will help make it less scary. It apparently is a sound emitted when cpu is "too idle". Apparently this problem is not related to hard drive whine so dont panic.

If yours is the idle sound problem, the pitch of the buzz can really be altered by this program.


Disk Space low

Sleepimage spacehogger

to remove the big sleepimage generated when your computer goes to sleep

sudo rm /private/var/vm/sleepimage

to open app from unidentified developer

To override your security settings and open the app anyway: In the Finder, locate the app you want to open. Don't use Launchpad to do this. ... Press the Control key, then click the app icon, then choose Open from the shortcut menu. Click Open.

Excessive fan noise

  • Open activity monitor
  • kill the process using the most CPU (if its killable)
  • culprits (for my record): Firefox even though it only had one tab open