I just installed a new hard drive in my MacBook Pro 2013 model. It's exactly the same make as the original drive. Just to be sure, I pre-formatted it as Mac OS Extended using a SATA-USB adapter cable attached to my other MacBook.

When I switch it on, all I get is a flashing folder symbol (see pic). I can't get to Recovery Mode by holding down Option+R in the usual way.

Any ideas?

Cheers, StuC

MacBook Pro startup screen

  • Is the new hard drive empty? – Joonas Jun 26 at 10:15
  • Yup - completely blank. I connected it to my other MacBook using the SATA-USB cable, then used DU to erase & reformat it. – StuC Jun 26 at 10:16
  • You are going to have to boot to Internet Recovery to download macOS. Either that or download macOS to the the other MacBook and make a USB macOS flash drive installer. Boot from the flash drive installer on this Mac to install macOS. BTW, to install Mojave (or newer), you will need to format APFS. – David Anderson Jun 26 at 10:24
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    Try the USB flash drive method. Or, use you other Mac to create a WiFi hotspot and try booting to Internet Recovery via WiFi. As for the Ethernet, are you sure the router is not prohibiting the assignment of an address to your Mac? – David Anderson Jun 26 at 12:33
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    I would like to say thanks to all for the advice - I've tried the lot (even the flash drive - thanks David), and can't get past the flashing folder "?". I've finally thrown in the towel & gone to the nearest apple store. They booked it in for a diagnostic (there's a charge, of course), but at least I'll find out what's going on. I'll let you know if anything useful comes back – StuC Jun 27 at 15:50

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