I may have bricked my old Macbook

bohous

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 21, 2005
2,715
Framingham
My trusty 2010 MBP has been getting really sluggish and a bit buggy even after upgrading to a SSD and more RAM several years ago. A couple of nights ago I created a Time Machine backup and tried a restore, which failed.
"An Error occurred while restoring from backup"
>Choose Startup Disk (this is empty)
>Install macOS (more below)
>Choose Other Backup (have tried 3, none work)

The Restore process requires erasing the HD, so the logical next step was to try to reinstall High Sierra from recovery mode and migrate. It starts out fine and goes through a reboot process and then hits a snag every time.
"Operation couldn't be completed. (com.apple.osinstall error -3)"

I have run First Aid on the HD and TM Backups and they end with Operation Successful.
I tried Apple Support chat and no help. Apparently even the Genius Bar will not support a computer this old. This thing is basically just my couch computer, and the plan was to upgrade anyway but thought I would try to keep this one running as an iTunes machine or whatever for a bit. Any advice appreciated.
 

The_Powa_of_Seiji_Ozawa

Member
SoSH Member
Sep 9, 2006
5,581
SS Botany Bay
Have you tried installing an earlier version of the MacOS straight onto the laptop, like Yosemite? I've observed that High Sierra does some weird things with the GPU and cooling fans on older machines, so there might be some other odd hardware thing that might now be tripping it up.

Another thing you might consider trying. Swap out the SSD and put in a standard platter HDD if you still have it, and see if you can get the laptop working that way. Try to eliminate the possibility of the problem being on the main board. Again, MacOS does can do some weird things on older computers when trying to startup on a SSD from a fresh install.
 

bohous

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 21, 2005
2,715
Framingham
Have you tried installing an earlier version of the MacOS straight onto the laptop, like Yosemite? I've observed that High Sierra does some weird things with the GPU and cooling fans on older machines, so there might be some other odd hardware thing that might now be tripping it up.

Another thing you might consider trying. Swap out the SSD and put in a standard platter HDD if you still have it, and see if you can get the laptop working that way. Try to eliminate the possibility of the problem being on the main board. Again, MacOS does can do some weird things on older computers when trying to startup on a SSD from a fresh install.
Thanks. Both things have occurred to me. Re-installing a previous OS seems easier said than done given the state the laptop is currently in (on top of my limited knowledge on how to create a new installer). I do still have the original HDD and that will probably be my next step just to get it running again.