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OS X Mavericks: Use Apple Diagnostics or Apple Hardware Test

Use Apple Diagnostics or Apple Hardware Test

Apple Diagnostics and Apple Hardware Test are tools for diagnosing problems with your computer’s internal hardware, such as the logic board, memory, and wireless components. You may be able to start your Mac with Apple Diagnostics or Apple Hardware Test, even if it doesn’t start using OS X.

The tool you use depends upon your model of Mac and version of OS X:

  • If you have a new Mac (mid-2013 or later), use Apple Diagnostics, which is built into your Mac.

  • If your Mac has OS X v10.8.3 or earlier, use Apple Hardware Test, which is built into your Mac.

  • If you updated your Mac to OS X v10.8.4 or later, use the system software disc or USB flash drive that came with your Mac.

Note: To see which version of OS X you have, choose Apple menu > About This Mac.

Apple Diagnostics and Apple Hardware Test don’t check external hardware components, such as USB or FireWire, or non-Apple devices, such as PCI cards from other vendors. They don’t check for operating system (OS X) or software- related problems such as app or extension conflicts.

If a hardware problem isn’t detected, you may have a problem with your version of OS X. To reinstall OS X, see:

Reinstall OS X

Use Apple Diagnostics

  1. Open Help Viewer’s Action pop-up menu (looks like a gear), then choose Print to print these instructions.
  2. Disconnect all external devices except the keyboard, mouse, display, and speakers. If you have an Ethernet cable or external DVD drive, disconnect it.
  3. Restart your Mac, holding down the D key while the Mac restarts. After your Mac restarts, Apple Diagnostics starts automatically. When Apple Diagnostics is finished, it lists any problems it finds. (The reference code is for use by Apple Support.)

    To change the language, press Command (⌘)-L.

  4. Follow the onscreen instructions. To start your Mac from the built-in recovery disk and open the Contact Apple Support webpage in Safari, click “Get started.”

    If Apple Diagnostics reports that your Wi-Fi card is not working properly, contact Apple Support or take your Mac to an Apple Store or Apple service provider.

Use Apple Hardware Test

  1. Open Help Viewer’s Action pop-up menu (looks like a gear), then choose Print to print these instructions.
  2. Disconnect all external devices except the keyboard, mouse, display, and speakers. If you have an Ethernet cable or external DVD drive, disconnect it.
  3. Restart your Mac, holding down the D key while the Mac restarts.

    After your Mac restarts, you should see the Apple Hardware Test chooser screen. If you don’t, Apple Hardware Test may not be available on your Mac. You may be able to start Apple Hardware Test from the Internet. Reconnect your Mac to the network, then restart your Mac while holding down both the Option and D keys.

  4. When the Apple Hardware Test chooser screen appears, select the language you want to use, then press the Return key or click the right arrow button.
  5. When the Apple Hardware Test main screen appears (after about 45 seconds), follow the onscreen instructions.

If Apple Hardware Test detects a problem, it displays an error. Make a note of the error before you call Apple Support. If you are able to start your Mac using OS X, you can retrieve the error and send the information to Apple, using the System Information utility (choose Apple menu > About This Mac, then click More Info).

Use a system software disc or USB flash drive

If your Mac came with a system software disc or USB flash drive, you may be able to use it to start Apple Hardware Test.

Important: Follow these instructions only if your Mac came with a system software disc or USB flash drive. Do not try to use a disc or USB flash drive from another Mac model.
  1. Open Help Viewer’s Action pop-up menu (looks like a gear), then choose Print to print these instructions.
  2. Disconnect all external devices except the keyboard, mouse, display, and speakers. If you have an Ethernet cable or external DVD drive, disconnect it.
  3. Insert the system software disc or USB flash drive.
  4. Restart your Mac, holding down the D key while the Mac restarts.
  5. When the Apple Hardware Test chooser screen appears, select the language you want to use, then press the Return key or click the right arrow button.
  6. When the Apple Hardware Test main screen appears (after about 45 seconds), follow the onscreen instructions.

If Apple Hardware Test detects a problem, it displays an error. Make a note of the error before you call Apple Support. If you are able to start your Mac using OS X, you can retrieve the error and send the information to Apple, using the System Information utility (Choose Apple menu > About This Mac, then click More Info).

Last Modified: Oct 23, 2013
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  • Last Modified: Oct 23, 2013
  • Article: PH14291
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