Your MacBook Won’t Boot up? Here’s What to Do!

When your MacBook laptop computer simply will not boot up, try the following techniques to identify the problem and hopefully fix it:


Is the battery connected properly, and is the computer’s power cable plugged into the wall outlet correctly?

Power Cycle

If your MacBook is not responding to the power button and not charging:

1. Remove the laptop’s battery

2. Unplug the power cable

3. Hold down the power button for 10 seconds

4. While continuing to hold the power button down, insert the power cable and continue holding for another 10 seconds

5. Release the power button

6. Turn the computer power on as you normally would

macbook-pro-battery250Reset Your SMC & PRAM


The computer’s SMC (System Management Controller) controls a lot of its features, and sometimes needs to be reset.

1. Shut down your MacBook

2. Plug power cable into a wall outlet and connect it to the computer

3. Press the (left side) “Shift” + “Control” + “Option” keys and the power button all at the same time

4. Release all the keys and power button

5. Turn the power on as you normally would

For an older Mac with a removable battery:

1. Disconnect the power cable

2. Remove the battery

3. Press and hold the power button for 5 seconds

4. Release the power button

5. Reconnect the battery and power cable

6. Turn on the power as you normally would


Your computer’s PRAM (parameter random-access memory) might also need to be reset from time to time.

1. Turn on power as normal

2. After hearing the start-up chime, hold down the “Command” + “Option” + “P” + “R” keys, and continue holding until the computer restarts again

Apple Diagnostics

A handy feature of a newer MacBook is that it comes with a pre-installed diagnostic test. The test will help you identify existing problems, even if y
our operating system is not working. Your Mac can even connect to the Internet while the main operating system is down to download the diagnostic tool.

1. Turn on the power as you normally would

2. After hearing the start-up chime, hold down the “Option” + “D” keys until you see a “Starting Internet Recovery” message

3. You may need to select a Wi-Fi networkmacbook-pro-ram250

4. Wait for tests to download

5. Finalize installation

6. With the diagnostics test downloaded, go to the “Hardware Tests” tab and click on the “Test” button

This will test the computer’s RAM (Random Access Memory), as well as other components. It can take up to one hour.


Apple’s diagnostics test sometimes comes up short of finding the problem. In that case, try Memtest, a popular memory testing tool that you can run from the “Terminal.” There is both a free and paid versions. To run the test, first put your computer in Safe Mode.

1. Turn on power as normal

2. Hold down the “Shift” key immediately after hearing the start-up chime

3. When the Apple logo appears, release the “Shift” key

4. Remove or switch any faulty RAM the test discovers

Recovery Partition

The OS X operating system provides a suite of tools to recover itself, called “OS X Recovery.” To put your computer in recovery mode:

1. Hold down the “Command” + “R” keys immediately after hearing the start-up chime.

2. When the Apple logo appears, release the keys. You will have the option to:

A. Restore your Mac from a Time Machine backup

B. Verify and repair connected drives using Disk Utility

C. Check your Internet connection and get help online using Safari

D. Install or reinstall OS X

Install or Reinstall OS X

As a last resort, you might try a full reinstall of your computer’s operating software. If you have not backed up your data, you will lose it in this case.

Run Linux

If you simply cannot wait until your laptop is repaired and must do work on your computer immediately, run Linux off of a USB or CD.

Contact Apple Support

Pay attention to unusual sounds, lights or visuals that might indicate what the problem is. A common audio error code, for example, is three beeps in a row followed by a pause, repeating.

After recording as many symptoms as possible, contact an Apple Support representative.