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“We don’t need no water (don’t) let the MacBookPro Burn…”

April 6, 2007

I finally got bit by one of the various bugs of the early-build MacBook Pro Core Duos.

A week or two ago, I noticed an occasional rattle-y sound from the ‘book. Actually, it took me awhile to narrow it down; when I’m in my office the ‘book perches on a shelf along with a small-form-factor PC and a collection of external drives that makes up my media server. At first I thought it was a bearing going out in a drive, but eventually I narrowed it down to the MacBook, and decided it was a fan getting a little noisy, and resolved to keep an ear on it (so to speak).

The noise quieted down, so I figured maybe it was just some little piece of debris (label off a chip or something) got caught in the blades.

A couple of days ago, however, I started to have stability problems — the Mac would occasionally lock up for no discernible reason, and even threw a couple of kernel panics.


I started tracking down recent additions and changes, and couldn’t find anything wrong, so last night I started getting suspicious. I shut down everything else, and couldn’t hear a fan at all on the Mac. Not even under a heavy load. I dug out a little utility to display the temperature and fan speeds, and lo and behold — the temp was climbing into the 180°F range, and no fans appeared to be spinning.

This morning I loaded up the Apple Hardware Diagnostics from the install CD, and it clocked a couple of errors that Googling seemed to show were involved with fan failures.

Calling AppleCare, they wouldn’t acknowledge what the error codes were, but after going through the usual rigamarole (reset SMC, etc., all of which I’d tried), they decided that it needed to return to the mothership for repairs.

Ten days worth of repairs.

After waiting two business days for the return shipping box (sent on a Friday, naturally.)

Yikes.

So, I’m currently running booted off my backup drive, with as much ventilation and air circulation as possible.

I begged a loaner from a friend which should arrive about the same time as the shipping box; hopefully everything will hold out that long and (despite the Bloodhound Gang title rip-off) not completely cook — and arrive back a much updated and cooler-headed MacBook…

Are we having fun yet?

[tags]Apple, MacBook, Mac, Cooling, AppleCare[/tags]

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