Reinstalling OSX on my MBP mid-2009


Well-known member
Sep 29, 2015
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a couple of days ago my mac started acting up (took very long to boot up, would crash and freeze from time to time) so I decided to reinstall everything completely. I made a bootable external drive (pendrive with El Capitan) and began the process. I powered up my mac with option key pushed, chose my pendrive as a start up disc and everything went fine up until the point when my mac rebooted after successfully installing the OS and a pop up window showed up that it wasn't able to properly start with newly installed OSX and I should do it again (i'm sorry I didn't exactly understand...), so I clicked a restart button and then my mac just restarted...
I did everything in the very same order only this time I decided to clean everything in Disc Utility because I thought that maybe there are some old files that prevent the new software to install properly. Just now I'm beginning to realize how stupid I was ERASING every disc... I must have deleted some important partition and here's where real trouble started...
When I start up my mac the screen lights up, then the chime comes and... that's it... there should be Apple Logo and a loading bar but they never show up. The most terryfing part is that none of the recovery commands such as CMD+R or CMD+option+R work... Neither does option key at start up... I tried resetting NVRAM and I even contacted Apple Support but unsuprisingly they weren't able to suggest me anything.

Guys, do you have any idea what I could do? This mac is super old, fixing it at a local repair point would cost more than it's entire worth.


Ambassador Team Leader, Senior Moderator
Jan 8, 2012
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Do you still have the original disks that came with your Mac? The reason I ask is because I've started from scratch several times with my old early-2009 model MacBook and I would always start with the original disk that came with it. OS X Leopard. Then I'd install the Snow Leopard disk and then the online upgrades for Lion, Mountain Lion, Mavericks, Yosemite and then El Capitan.

Believe it or not, the process didn't take long, in my opinion. I didn't install any 3rd-party apps or even set it up completely until I got to the desired OS version. Maybe the process will work for you.