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What? MacBook Air powers on without SSD?
Posted by: space-time
Date: December 27, 2020 06:31PM
As I posted about a week ago, MIL has a 2013 MacBook Air, basic model (4 GB RAM, 128 SSD I believe).

it just died. She was watching a video, stopped for a moment, (not sure if she closed the lid or not), when she wanted to resume, nothing.

No amount of SMC reset, PRAM reset, with and without charger, nothing that I tried worked. In fact machine was completely dead, I tried to reset SMC and PRAM but nothing happened.

I wanted to remove the SSD yesterday but didn't have the P5 screwdriver. Ordered on Amazon, got here today.

I just tried to boot it up one more time, no luck.

I opened it and followed the OWC procedure to remove the SSD. That implies disconnecting the battery, removing the SSD. I just put the battery back, closed the machine, and I was about to install the SSD in a OWC enclosure. Just for fun, I pressed the power button. Boing! WTF? it did boot up and now it shows me a flashing folder.

maybe the machine was all right and SSD was bad all along?

EDIT: I changed "boots up" to "powers on" without SSD.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/27/2020 08:51PM by space-time.
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Re: What? MacBook Air boots up without SSD?
Posted by: C(-)ris
Date: December 27, 2020 06:36PM
Or pulling the battery reset something. Throw the SSD back in and see what happens.



C(-)ris
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Re: What? MacBook Air boots up without SSD?
Posted by: space-time
Date: December 27, 2020 06:46PM
SSD works fine in the OWC enclosure, I tested it on my machine.

now I want to see if I can boot her machine from the external SSD, and then I may try to put it back in.
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Re: What? MacBook Air boots up without SSD?
Posted by: Ombligo
Date: December 27, 2020 06:47PM
I would wager that the battery connection itself was loose.

I don't think the SSD is bad because if that was the cause, the machine would boot and give the flashing folder.

Put the SSD back in and see what happens. If it boots, you are likely set (do an immediate backup though). If it doesn't then I would look at the power connection.



“No persons are more frequently wrong, than those who will not admit they are wrong.” -- François de La Rochefoucauld

"Those who cannot accept the past are condemned to revise it." -- Geo. Mathias
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Re: What? MacBook Air boots up without SSD?
Posted by: space-time
Date: December 27, 2020 07:03PM
SMART Utility (with SAT SMART driver installed) can see every single USB external drive I have, but not the OWC Envoy Pro case. Well, that's disappointing, but not a flaw since they didn't make any claims in this regard.

Both 2010 Mini and 2011 MBP can see the external drive just fine, but MBA refuzs to boot from it for some reason.
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Re: What? MacBook Air boots up without SSD?
Posted by: C(-)ris
Date: December 27, 2020 07:08PM
Quote
space-time
SMART Utility (with SAT SMART driver installed) can see every single USB external drive I have, but not the OWC Envoy Pro case. Well, that's disappointing, but not a flaw since they didn't make any claims in this regard.

Both 2010 Mini and 2011 MBP can see the external drive just fine, but MBA refuzs to boot from it for some reason.

There is a difference between it being visible and being bootable. Put it back in the MBA and boot to internet recovery and see if you can wipe it and reinstall an OS.



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Re: What? MacBook Air boots up without SSD?
Posted by: space-time
Date: December 27, 2020 07:19PM
OK I was able to boot from another external SSD and now it is finally booting from that OWC enclosure from the original SSD. It just seems to take longer than expected. it's stuck at about 70% and waiting, waiting... so slow... 75% maybe...

something's not right, it shouldn't take that long...

It just booted and Now I see an Adobe Flash Player Uninstalled that just opened.
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Re: What? MacBook Air boots up without SSD?
Posted by: space-time
Date: December 27, 2020 07:28PM
SSD back inside, it didn't boot. I pressed the button several times.

I was getting impatient and then I pressed the button 4-5 times quickly and it booted. What is happening???
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Re: What? MacBook Air boots up without SSD?
Posted by: space-time
Date: December 27, 2020 08:20PM
And now the machine works just fine, I did multiple restarts, everything is normal like there was never an issue.

I do suspect that removing the battery reset something, but what? also why it didn't see the SSD in that external case from the beginning, but after several restarts, it saw it?

I was going to toss this machine. Later once I saw that it worked, I was thinking to sell it for a deep discount with full disclosure that it may be flakey.

Now I am thinking that I should keep it and send MIL back to Romania with 2 Machines: this one and my wife's MBA. I am afraid that if something happens and she does not have a working computer, it will be very hard for us to keep in touch. She is NOT a smart phone user. I think having a backup computer, in the days of COVID when she is almost always confined in her apartment, is a good idea.
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Re: What? MacBook Air powers on without SSD?
Posted by: Speedy
Date: December 27, 2020 09:45PM
Check with Romanian customs. They may not allow two computers to enter the country with just one person.



Saint Cloud, Minnesota, where the weather is wonderful even when it isn't.
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Re: What? MacBook Air powers on without SSD?
Posted by: space-time
Date: December 27, 2020 11:36PM
Quote
Speedy
Check with Romanian customs. They may not allow two computers to enter the country with just one person.

Good point.
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