Apple Releases MacBook 'Shutdown' Fix (Firmware)

Dennis Faas's picture

Last Thursday, Apple finally announced a fix for the irritating "MacBook Shutdown" pandemic.

The shutdown problem, which the company insists has affected only a "small percentage" of MacBook owners, surfaced in July after the 13-inch widescreen MacBooks debuted. Since then, the problem has generated quite a bit of buzz, and has even led to the creation of the website Since the website launched in August, over 1500 users have registered with the site. (Source:

Previously, Apple had addressed the quandary by having the affected machines sent in for warranty repairs. However, the repairs caused a backlog and consumers often had to wait weeks to get their laptops back. (Source:

MacBook owners experiencing the shutdown problem can visit the Apple support site and download Firmware update 1.1. The MacBooks running MAC OS X 10.4.6 will need to download Mac OS X 10.4.8 before installing the update. Apple has recommended that all MacBook owners install the firmware, even if the laptop has been brought in for repairs. (Source:

Although many customers have breathed a sigh of relief since Apple's announcement, others are skeptical of the fix. Some users claim that the shutdowns have been caused by internal overheating which has caused a short in the system. They have reported that repaired MacBooks have been returned with new heat sinks and logic boards. (Source:

Although some technicians say that improved firmware monitoring can help regulate overheating, some critics disagree. One blogger gave his two cents on "As an Apple Tech, I can confirm that this is simply ignoring a bigger issue. I have seen first hand dozens and dozens of MacBooks with the thermal sensor wires melted to the side of the heat sink. Though this may be a nice temporary fix to get people up and running, I really hope that Apple is not encouraging this as true fix." (Source:

Time will tell if the firmware update is a true fix for the problematic MacBooks. The outcome will determine whether Apple is able to hush the naysayers, or whether the company will test their customers' patience once again.

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