Author Topic: Options for upgrading Macbook?  (Read 3401 times)

Gagnante

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Options for upgrading Macbook?
« on: January 17, 2017, 08:03:21 AM »
I have a Macbook Pro purchased in 2010 that is still running OS X 10.6.8.  It is primarily used for browsing the net and streaming video.  It's beginning to have trouble displaying certain web content, and of course there are no browser updates for it anymore.

I have poked around trying to find ways to update the OS to a more current version, but the intermediate upgrades are no longer available on the app store.  What are my options?

Thinkum

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Re: Options for upgrading Macbook?
« Reply #1 on: January 17, 2017, 08:18:06 AM »
My SO has the same year MB and upgraded hers. She bought a new battery, some RAM, as well as a SSD (solid-state drive) for about $250. After installing both and downloading Yosemite it's like a new computer. 
She got the parts on Other World Computing: https://www.macsales.com/. They also have all the how-to videos for installation.

Gagnante

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Re: Options for upgrading Macbook?
« Reply #2 on: January 17, 2017, 12:08:23 PM »
Thank you.  Was she able to just download and install Yosemite without having to do any other updates first?

Thinkum

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Re: Options for upgrading Macbook?
« Reply #3 on: January 17, 2017, 01:16:49 PM »
Not sure since we had to go the Apple Store to have them check it out. Turned out that everything was installed correctly, but the SSD connector was not flush so it was giving us an error. While they fixed that, they also installed Yosemite so we got it back as an almost "new" computer. Oh and they charged us nothing! Lesson learned was just take your time and recheck your connections. The 2010 MB was I think the last year of being able to do this sort of stuff. Sometime after that year they used sealed batteries and you cannot just open your laptop and upgrade. Good luck!

Guido_statche

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Re: Options for upgrading Macbook?
« Reply #4 on: January 17, 2017, 07:58:58 PM »
I have early 2011 MBP and I just added a SSD & RAM and it helped a ton.  The SSD was the biggest upgrade.  It wasn't too difficult to do if you are careful.  What sort of display problems are you having?  Is it strictly software or hardware?  Some Mac laptops around that time had a recall.  I'm not sure if yours had it - maybe check with Apple?

Mariposa

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Re: Options for upgrading Macbook?
« Reply #5 on: January 17, 2017, 09:12:32 PM »
I have a Macbook Pro purchased in 2010 that is still running OS X 10.6.8.  It is primarily used for browsing the net and streaming video.  It's beginning to have trouble displaying certain web content, and of course there are no browser updates for it anymore.

I have poked around trying to find ways to update the OS to a more current version, but the intermediate upgrades are no longer available on the app store.  What are my options?

I have the same exact setup; I love Snow Leopard so much I've mostly been living without flash or the ability to run most new software or even log into some secure websites. If you want to upgrade, you can install El Capitan (still available in the app store) first and then Sierra:

https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT206886

The other option is to erase your harddrive and do a clean install of Sierra:

http://osxdaily.com/2016/09/26/clean-install-macos-sierra/

You'd have to manually transfer all of your files with this second option, though. (Can't use Time Machine.) I did a clean install of El Capitan for my MIL who was running Mavericks before, and her computer ran o much faster. My husband installed El Capitan over Mavericks, and his system is painfully slow.

Note that some of your old programs may not work on El Capitan / Sierra. From what I read, Word 2008 may or may not work on the newer Mac OS. This has been the major roadblock for me to upgrade: I don't want to buy a newer Microsoft product when I'm very happy with the 2008 version.

Getting an SSD and increasing RAM as others suggest above would definitely make my computer a lot snappier. But Snow Leopard still runs pretty fast after all these years; it'd be overkill for me.

Gagnante

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Re: Options for upgrading Macbook?
« Reply #6 on: January 18, 2017, 08:42:04 AM »
Guido_statche, this appears to be a software issue.  The display issues are with sites like Facebook and certain news sites that use a lot of scripting.  Some things work in Firefox but not Safari, and vice versa, so I don't think it's hardware related. 

dca, thank you for the upgrade information!  I still have Office 2008 on my own Macbook Pro running Yosemite, and although it struggles, it does actually still work (I did update to 2016 though because I need it for my side hustle) so that might not be an issue.

The computer is just being used as a "hobby machine" for my husband to poke around the internet, and I'm about to lose my job, so we don't want to put any money into it, but depending on our finances in the future, an SSD and upgraded RAM will be on the radar.

ketchup

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Re: Options for upgrading Macbook?
« Reply #7 on: January 18, 2017, 08:46:14 AM »
Seconding everyone mentioning a SSD and RAM upgrade.  By far the most bang-for-buck refresh to an aging computer.

Mariposa

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Re: Options for upgrading Macbook?
« Reply #8 on: January 18, 2017, 11:34:49 AM »
I've experimented with different browsers & found that the last version of Chrome (no longer supported) with flash uninstalled works best with Snow Leopard. You can try that if you don't want to upgrade.

Word 2008 still works after my husband installed El Capitan over Mavericks. May not work with a clean install. And if you have any problems, you can't get help from Microsoft because that version isn't supported any longer. It's the main reason my husband accepts a painfully slow system.

Tris Prior

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Re: Options for upgrading Macbook?
« Reply #9 on: January 18, 2017, 12:39:25 PM »
Posting to follow; my macbook is older than yours (2008) and I'm having a lot of trouble with websites not working or constantly beachballing. I don't have it with me so I forget the specific version - 10.5.something.  Leopard.

I haven't tried upgrading it because I think if I jump to Sierra, then my Adobe CS3 won't work, and I don't want to have to pay monthly for Creative Cloud. I'm not even sure if Yosemite will run CS3, have to look into it.

At my last job we couldn't get El Capitan to install at all, on a less-than-1-year-old mac at the time. It hung on "5 minutes remaining" for an entire weekend so we gave up. And my current entirely mac-based office with an actual IT dept. is keeping us all on Yosemite as well so I assume there's some issue.


mtnrider

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Re: Options for upgrading Macbook?
« Reply #10 on: January 19, 2017, 09:37:29 AM »
Tris - If you have a "13-inch, Aluminum, Late 2008", you can install 8gb of RAM and a SDD.  I think the official docs say it only supports 4gb, but 8gb will work, and it will easily run El Capitan.

Posting to follow; my macbook is older than yours (2008) and I'm having a lot of trouble with websites not working or constantly beachballing. I don't have it with me so I forget the specific version - 10.5.something.  Leopard.

I haven't tried upgrading it because I think if I jump to Sierra, then my Adobe CS3 won't work, and I don't want to have to pay monthly for Creative Cloud. I'm not even sure if Yosemite will run CS3, have to look into it.

At my last job we couldn't get El Capitan to install at all, on a less-than-1-year-old mac at the time. It hung on "5 minutes remaining" for an entire weekend so we gave up. And my current entirely mac-based office with an actual IT dept. is keeping us all on Yosemite as well so I assume there's some issue.
« Last Edit: January 19, 2017, 09:39:03 AM by mtnrider »

Tris Prior

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Re: Options for upgrading Macbook?
« Reply #11 on: January 19, 2017, 10:37:03 AM »
It's 15-inch aluminum and was bought in early 2008. But, I'll look into this, thanks!

Of course, my research suggests that CS3 will probably have problems running on El Capitan too .... argh. I wonder if I'm better off hanging on to this as is so I can still have CS3 (which runs slowly, but OK) and then find some other inexpensive solution for browsing.

Mariposa

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Re: Options for upgrading Macbook?
« Reply #12 on: January 19, 2017, 03:19:03 PM »
It's 15-inch aluminum and was bought in early 2008. But, I'll look into this, thanks!

Of course, my research suggests that CS3 will probably have problems running on El Capitan too .... argh. I wonder if I'm better off hanging on to this as is so I can still have CS3 (which runs slowly, but OK) and then find some other inexpensive solution for browsing.

If you have an extra external hard drive lying around, you could make a carbon copy of your internal hard drive:

https://bombich.com/download

(Leopard version link all the way on the bottom.)

Then install El Capitan over Leopard on the external hard drive, boot from that drive, and see if CS3 works.

mtnrider

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Re: Options for upgrading Macbook?
« Reply #13 on: January 20, 2017, 11:54:24 AM »
It's 15-inch aluminum and was bought in early 2008. But, I'll look into this, thanks!

Of course, my research suggests that CS3 will probably have problems running on El Capitan too .... argh. I wonder if I'm better off hanging on to this as is so I can still have CS3 (which runs slowly, but OK) and then find some other inexpensive solution for browsing.

Check the menu [Apple]:About This Mac, look for "Macbook", to be sure about the vintage.

I think you can get up to 4gb of RAM into an early 2008 macbook.  That's not bad.

Tech is a losing battle.  The marginal utility out of something new over a few years old is relatively low for typical uses, even including software development.