- White screen on your MacBook Pro

What To Do When You Get A White Screen On Your MacBook Pro

Step 1 – Unplug all of your devices and attempt a restart in ‘Safe Mode’ by holding down the ‘Shift’ key when powering up. If that does not work, move on to Step 2.

White screen on your MacBook Pro

When you start your MacBook Pro in safe mode using this combination of keys you will see the Apple logo appear on the screen. At this point, you need to release the ‘Shift’ key. Keep in mind that as you will be operating in Safe Mode your MacBook Pro may experience a slower security start-up after resetting, this is ok and it is only temporary. All will be back to normal when the system has a chance to correct itself.

Next, you want to take some time to clean house. Login and make a beeline for the trash can; this will need to be emptied. Next, you will need to access‘Finder’and ensure the HDD has at least 10GB of free space.

If you do not have 10GB of free space you’ll need to move some of your larger files to another drive; I would suggest using an external HDD. This is a good time to make sure critical data you cannot replace is effectively backed up.

Target larger files like videos, big images and any audio files as these will get you the best results in freeing up space on your HDD. If you have lots of these, before you know it you’ll hit your target of 10GB and be good to reboot as usual.

Step 2 – When the system starts up navigate your way through to ‘Run Disk Utility’. This is done by holding down the ‘Command’ key and the ‘R’ key during the restart. You’ll be accessing the recovery partition during this time. If that doesn’t solve the problem of the white screen on your MacBook Pro, then move on to Step 3.

White screen on your MacBook Pro


Once you disrupt the white screen of death and the screen displays the options required to access the disk utility, select the disk check and repair option.

If you see a message alerting you to the volume for the disk utility indicating that it cannot be serviced, I’m sorry to say, but your HDD is kaputski (that’s an official technical term meaning ‘stuffed’) and it will need to be replaced.

If this is not the case and this is your first time seeing this error, you can opt to remove the listed volume and then restore the backup. From this point on you’ll need to be careful, if the HDD fails then there is a very strong chance that it is going to fail again. Time to back up as much sensitive data as possible, stat!

But what if you find that the recovery partition cannot be displayed? I’ve encountered this in the past, it’s not very common for a MacBook Pro, but it does happen.

If your MacBook Pro doesn’t start up in recovery mode, you still have some options to choose from. You could try using the Internet recovery option on your MacBook Pro. This is able to be accessed by holding down the ‘Command’ and ‘Option’ and ‘R’ buttons until the Apple logo appears on the screen. To use this option you will need to have an Internet connection you can access.

If you can’t use the Internet recovery option, you could try configuring through the Startup Manager. As you power up your MacBook Pro, hold down the ‘Option’ key until the Startup Manager appears. Once you have access to this you can then select how your MacBook Pro is booted up from the various options on the screen.

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MJ Author