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What Is Happening With My Mac Book?

 
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Smallwheels
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 02, 2013 1:13 pm    Post subject: What Is Happening With My Mac Book? Reply with quote

Today I was typing in a document in Open Office when the letter A started being repeated by itself. I was using an external keyboard. The external mouse wasn't working either during this extended keying of the letter A. It was connected to the USB port on the external keyboard. I looked for stuck keys and there were none.

I looked on the Mac Book keyboard for stuck keys. There were none in the down position. The trackpad did work so I could quit the document. When it was closed I noticed that an unopened document on my desktop was highlighted. I tried clicking the empty field on the desktop to clear the highlighted document. It wouldn't release.

I opened the document and the letter A started typing itself repeatedly. I could hit other keys and they would type in between the A being typed.

I pulled up the A cap on the keyboard. It wasn't stuck down. I could see the mechanism was in the correct position.

For 90% of this machines life the typing has been done on an external keyboard. The lid was mostly kept open just slightly to allow the warm air to escape to keep the machine cool. The only time this computers keyboard gets touched these days is if the external keyboard connection stops working.

That is another new thing that began a couple of weeks ago. One of the USB ports just quits working. I know this because the external keyboard would be affected. Restarting the machine would fix this every time. Sometimes switching the keyboard to the other USB port worked and other times both didn't work until I restarted the computer.

What is going on with this machine? Is this a sign of a different type of failure?

I'm typing this from my HP Ubuntu 13.04 machine.
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WheelSpinners
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 03, 2013 12:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You might try resetting the SMC and PRAM for the USB port. If that doesn't work, perhaps try another USB keyboard. It could be possible that something is wrong with your external keyboard. Are you noticing a lot of wiggle room at the end of the USB cable where it plugs into your MacBook? I had that issue with an external hard drive once and it would keep mounting and unmouting. I ended up buying a new USB cable and it fixed the problem. I would assume that your cable is built into the keyboard though. It still could be that same type of issue though.
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Smallwheels
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 03, 2013 9:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The USB ports are tight. Since this computer mostly stays on my desk it remains in the same position and the cables remain attached all of the time. This means not much wear on the ports.

I did unplug the external keyboard and stop the A from repeating for a little while by just clicking all over the place with the buttons below the track pad. Then I opened the text document again and typed a little using the Mac Book keys and the problem began again. That is when I removed the cap over the A key and examined it. Since very little typing was done on this keyboard over time I doubt it is stuck or even dirty. The problem originated while I was typing with the external keyboard.

For now the first thing I must fix is the repeating A.

What would happen if I switched off the machine and tried to turn it back on? If this is a key problem then I wouldn't be able to log in because my password isn't aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa.
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Smallwheels
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 03, 2013 11:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I sprayed some condensed air into the A key on the computer. I restarted it. The problem went away. The only thing is I don't know if it was a dirt problem or a software problem. I ran a Hardware Check using the OS X disc and the diagnosis is "No Problems".

Now I want to use Onyx to check software things. Onyx says I need to restart it with the disc. How do I do that? I know that pressing D while restarting will take me to the Apple Hardware Check but I don't know what to press to do what Onyx wants me to do. If anybody here has used Onyx in this way, please let me know how to start the computer and boot from the CD.

Thank you.

Smallwheels
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Smallwheels
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 13, 2013 1:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

WheelSpinners wrote:
You might try resetting the SMC and PRAM for the USB port.
How do I do that?
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jb
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 13, 2013 3:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Smallwheels wrote:
please let me know how to start the computer and boot from the CD.

Thank you.

Smallwheels


If you have the original install disc, power up with the disc in the optical drive while pressing the "C" key.
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jb
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 13, 2013 3:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Smallwheels wrote:
WheelSpinners wrote:
You might try resetting the SMC and PRAM for the USB port.
How do I do that?


Take a look at this web page...
http://support.apple.com/kb/ht3964
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