I own a 2015 MacBook Pro.

If you accidentally drop your MacBook, or it slips from your lap, the screen automatically turns off, and the device is locked. I could not find documentation on this feature online.

Recently, after some recent software update, I notice that this feature has been triggered a lot more frequently. In fact, it tends to be triggered when I am just normally holding my MacBook on my lap, and the device isn't falling at all. Sometimes, it is even triggered on a table if I place the laptop on top of the carrying sleeve (which isn't completely flat).

When it is triggered, I have significant difficulty getting it to turn back on. Usually, I have to raise it completely, and then unlock it. Sometimes, it just goes straight back to the black screen as I am typing my password in.

I am not sure if this is a feature or a bug at this point. Are there are ways to disable the turning off display feature on dropping completely?

Thanks in advance!


1 Answer 1


I think you are referring to

Disable the Sudden Motion Sensor to avoid the harddrive heads parking them due to loud noise in a club.

To check if Sudden Motion Sensor is activated, use the following command and look for the sms setting (1 = enabled) :

# sudo pmset -g

To disable Sudden Motion Sensor, use the following command :

# sudo pmset -a sms 0

To enable Sudden Motion Sensor, use the following command :

# sudo pmset -a sms 1

From http://rc.vc/files/traktor/optimizing_macbook_for_traktor.txt


or possibly

Screen turns off when I move my MacBook when it is on the sleeve

  • Thank you; this is very helpful. I've looked into this some more and it seems that it is to do with the sleeve. It seems that there is no fix except to get a different sleeve. For what it's worth, it is especially problematic when the magnets are below the keys "tab" and "\".
    – alqz
    Mar 21, 2018 at 19:31

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