The MacBook family was first introduced in May 2006 and replaced the iBook as Apple's consumer laptop.

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Infinite chime at boot, grey screen.


I have tried to wake up my macbook (A1181 white) after a few years in the garage.

However, it won't boot properly.

I have looked the last two days the related post I could find on this forum and on the internet, but nothing seems to work.

Here are the symptoms:

When I press the power button, the screen becomes grey (no apple logo appears), and I hear the starting chime. One second after, I hear the same chime but only the last half. This "half-chime" sound is repeated again every second or so, indefinitely. The screen stays grey.

I have tried:

With and without battery:

to reset the PRAM (holding the power button for 10 seconds: however it just turns it on and off).

to reset the NVRAM: by holding cmd+alt+P+R until the computer reboots.

to swap the RAM, one empty slot at a time, and used a new working RAM.

When I start the computer with no RAM, the screen stays black, there is no sound, and the white led on the front flashes one time per second, indefinitely

to put a linux-bootable usb and press ALT (even CMD) during the boot, but nothing happens (i tried both USB slots), the symptoms are the same.

I did not have any hard drive in it, so i put the linux i had installed on an other macbook A1181 (same model, but in black).

The hard drive is powered (I can feel it moving a tiny bit) but it's obviously not reading/accessing it.

The dvd drive is looking for a dvd though. I do not have an install dvd, but if I put a random (non-bootable) DVD, it will read it and eject it. During and after the reading, the symptoms are the same (still stuck in the infinite loop of "half startup sounds").

As the dvd drive seemed to work more than my hard drive, I put the hard drive on the SATA slot instead of the optical drive. This time, the hard drive is read (I can feel it), but the symptoms remain the same.

I don't really know what else to do…

Any idea is much appreciated :)

Thanking you in advance

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Why did you garage it? (If it was a performance problem parking in a garage wouldn't improve things.)


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Garages can be damp - moisture causes corrosion you have to open it and look to see if you have moisture damage. Study the guide and comments so you don't tear off a connector pulling the wrong way as you inspect the machine.

A MacBook will not run without RAM

That the DVD is cycling indicates a short - could be anyplace from keyboard to drive itself.

Depending on the SATA speed of the drive it may not work from the Optical Drive Slot. That may also be why the SATA drive won't boot your machine. If your drive is SATA III it's too fast, your machine was designed for SATA I - SATA II should work however, it cannot boot in 64-bit mode nor does it support "OpenCL". It cannot run versions of Mac OS X more recent than 10.6.8 (don't know what versions of Linux it runs).

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