The screen I'm on does not have a time remaining estimate, that was the prior screen.

This one simply shows the Apple logo and a plain status bar with no percentage or time indicator.

Perhaps it's just the boot up screen.

At any rate, it's been stuck exactly at the halfway point for about an hour.

No clue what the proper course of action here is.

It's a 15 in MacBook Pro, mid 2009, Latest version of Snow Leopard with no history of install related or hardware issues at all.

2 Answers 2


This appears to be a variation on the boot cache problem with initial upgrade installations of Yosemite.

The difficulty for solving it appears to be knowing precisely when to press and release the Shift ⇧ key to enter Safe boot mode, which remedies the problem.

The procedure is explained in this Apple KBase article.

Shut down the computer by holding in the startup button until it powers down. Start the computer, and immediately upon hearing the startup chime (or when there’s any sign of life such as the sound of a fan, or hard drive, or lighting of the screen), press and hold Shift ⇧ . When the gray apple appears, release Shift ⇧ . After a few moments you will be prompted to log in, and the words “Safe boot” will appear in red letters near the top right corner of the screen.

Be sure to apply the latest OS X update before shutting down or restarting again if your version of OS X is older than 10.10.2. At the time I’m typing this, 10.10.2 is the current version. Having 10.10.2 should prevent the problem from occurring more than once.


Try giving the Mac a hard shutdown using Shift ⇧ Ctrl ⌃ Opt ⌥ Power ⌽, then restart in safe boot (hold Shift ⇧ at the startup chime) and see what happens. If you get a successful boot it will either be 10.6 or 10.10, and at this point I'd strongly suggest making a USB installer for Yosemite rather than simply running the install application. One good reason for doing this is if you have a disk failure or upgrade to an SSD it will save time otherwise wasted performing an Internet Recovery, and you can be sure of having a proper "clean" install.

If you can't boot into any OS try holding Opt ⌥ at the startup chime, in case the Yosemite installer successfully created a recovery partition. If so you'll be able to recover your system from there.

  • @Tersujin Kudos on those extra fancy keycaps! Dec 15, 2015 at 5:32

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