Mid 2006 / model number A1181 / black or white case / 1.83 or 2.0 GHz Intel Core Duo processor.

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Can't install OS on new HD

I installed a new hard drive in my MacBook, but cannot get Snow Leopard to install. I did the replacement according to ifixit.com and then partitioned it and ran erase. When I start up with the disk, everything seems to be going fine - the new HD shows as destination for install and the screen says it's installing the OS. It says there are 30 minutes left and then an error screen comes up that says there's a software problem and to retry. I've tried about ten times, same result. Do you have any idea what's going on and how I can fix it so I can install the OS? I've even tried installing Tiger from an old disk, but nothing at all happened - just a blank screen. Please help!

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Some optical drives are very touchy, especially with dual-layer DVDs like the Snow Leopard installer. I'd take a look at the underside of the DVD and see if there are any scratches or smudges...if there are smudges, clean them off with a damp soft cloth. In severe cases, the drive may just not be able to read the DVD, in which case you may need to obtain a DVD that is free of scratches, or use an external optical drive, or the drive of another Mac in target mode.

Also, just curious, you mention you partitioned the drive...did you format the entire drive as a single volume? If you could detail the process and options you chose just so we can verify you didn't pick anything non-standard, that would be good to rule out.

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wow that was fast! I made one partition and named it "Machintosh HD", as your step-by-step instructions said. Also chose Journaling option which was the default. I'll check the disk to see if it's clean and would really appreciate any other advice... Any idea why Tiger won't load?

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+ is your installation disk a retail installation disk or a gray disk?

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I cleaned off some fingerprints from the back of the Snow Leopard disk and noticed that there are some small light scratches. Would they be enough to prevent installation? The Tiger disk is back with a gray X. Thanks!

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Just tried the Tiger disk again, after cleaning it. Held down "c" and after a folder with a "?" flashed for a while, the disk ejected. Tried it again restared holding "option" and gave up after about five minutes of a blank gray screen with a cursor. Anything?

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Yes, slight scratches can be enough to make a DVD difficult to read, but given two different boot DVDs have behaved strangely, I'd lean toward the possibility that your optical drive is touchy or going bad. Was it working well before you replaced the hard drive? As far as testing, you've exhausted the options with what you have. Obtaining a brand new Snow Leopard DVD could help to determine if the optical drive is bad. Or if you have access to another Mac and a firewire cable, you can put the media in that machine, put it in target mode, and then install the OS using the remote optical drive. Maybe you could borrow a friend's MacBook? Again, I'm guessing your optical is touchy, but it would be a shame to have to replace it just for the purpose of reinstalling the OS, especially if it still generally works well enough.

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Do the optional install, and don't install everything. I couldn't get the default install to work with my iBook after upgrading the HD and memory. But, doing the custom install with its allowed turning off of extra items worked. (BTW, I also upgraded the DVD to be the iFixit RW DVD, Don't know if that made any difference.).

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i have a same problem in 1.83ghz one. i have a solution for this . just change the ram with new one . sure it will install try . how many ram you have install in your system try to remove one and install if fails then try with another one . it will solve surely . thnx

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that time apple genius also install the mac os on my lapy through firewire on another macbook. then i tried that was success to full installation . this error comes when it is installing BSD on system.

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Thought I'd posted a reply, but it's not here... Thanks to everyone who made suggestions. I tried all of them, but nothing has worked. I tried FireWire and my older iMac - after several attempts, the installation started and actually indicated that it was successfully completed. Alas when I restarted the MacBook, all I got was a flashing folder w/ a "?". Anyone know what THAT means - that the computer can't locate an OS? Anyway thanks again for all the suggestions; I'm afraid though it does have to do w/ the intel processor and I will be heading for the Genius Bar. :-(

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hard drive fail to format on mac

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