RAM 16GB Upgrade Troubleshooting

I installed a 1TB SSD HB 2.5" and it worked like a charm. Then I installed the 16 GB RAM upgrade and nothing. No beeps, no chime, just a black screen and the fan might be running, hard to tell.

Back to the original 4 GB RAM and starts up like a charm. High Sierra and all else is up to date. Tried running the EFI updater available for my machine and got message that it's not supported by my system.

Took out one of the 2 GB sticks and put in one of the 8 GB sticks. Started right up and system info says it is running 10 GB RAM. Took that 8 out and put in other 8 and same result. Runs great. So the RAM I bought is not bad and my RAM slots both work, but it won't run with both 8 GB sticks.

Anyone encounter this too and if so is there a way to get all 16 GB of RAM to work?

  • Model Name: MacBook Pro
  • Model Identifier: MacBookPro7,1
  • Processor Name: Intel Core 2 Duo
  • Processor Speed: 2.66 GHz
  • Number of Processors: 1
  • Total Number of Cores: 2
  • L2 Cache: 3 MB
  • Memory: 10 GB
  • Bus Speed: 1.07 GHz
  • Boot ROM Version: MBP71.003F.B00
  • SMC Version (system): 1.62f7

If you need more system info to provide help, don't hesitate to ask.

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Any luck with this? I have the same exact problem!

Sadly some systems will only go to 10 GB.

I’m afraid not. After a weeek of trying everything under the sun, I gave up and decided to be happy with 10 GB and a boot up time that is faster by a good 5 minutes.

Exact same problem :(


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From EveryMac: Standard RAM: 4 GB Maximum RAM:16 GB*

4 GB of RAM pre-installed as two 2 GB modules, no slots free.*Originally, both the official and actual maximum RAM was 8 GB. However, as ++confirmed++ by site sponsor OWC, if running OS X 10.7.5 or higher, updated with the latest EFI, and equipped with proper specification memory modules, this model can support up to 16 GB of RAM.

PC3-8500 DDR3 - 1066 MHz

So as we can see your system is able to run with 16 GB!

Lets see if upgrading your OS to a higher release fixes this. Starting in Mavericks and going forward Apple now updates the firmware only via the OS update process.


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@shoppingamc is already running High Sierra, so the firmware should already be up to date, I would think.

The firmware is not reflecting that. I'm suspecting the drive was updated independently of the system so the system didn't get updated.

Oh that's right. But it is working with 10GB, wouldn't it max out at 8 if it was running the old firmware?

Once installing High Sierra didn't help the situation, I searched for EFI Firmware updates at Apple Support. The following is a list of what I found, downloaded, tried to run, and the messages I got:

MacBook Pro EFI Firmware Update 1.2

"Can't be opened because it is from an unidentified developer"

MacBook Pro EFI Firmware Update 1.3

"This computer does not need this update"

MacBook Pro EFI Firmware Update 1.7

"Can't be opened because it is from an unidentified developer"

MacBook Pro EFI Update 2.1

"This software is not supported on your system"

MacBook Pro EFI Firmware Update 2.3

"This software is not supported on your system"

MacBook Pro (13-inch Mid 2010) EFI Firmware Update 2.5

"Can't be opened because it is from an unidentified developer"

I still have my backup from the hard drive I replaced, which was running Sierra. Is it at all plausible that going back to Sierra would allow me to get one of these updaters to work?

These are the older ones ;-{

Apple has not maintained the list or offered details on the versioning since this Apple T/N About EFI and SMC firmware updates for Intel-based Mac computers. So it's a bit of a crapshoot.

Now the fun! You need to convert the hex to dec to compare your systems major version is 63 (3F) the list is 57 (39) 6 releases different yours being newer than the list my 2012 15" MacBook Pro is 218 (DA) - 211 (D3) from the list 7 releases different.

I was comparing my MacBook Pro which is running HS and has a newer rev. of firmware. Even still yours is not going to be the same as mine as you have an older Core2Duo CPU based system (32 vs 64bit). But, look at the swing of versions. I would have expected a few more versions than mine.

The only way to tell for sure is to find a second system like yours which is working with 16 GB of RAM to compare.



I have the same firmware and versions and mac as you and I was able to install 16gb ram. I had the same issue you are describing at first when I tried to install 16gb ddr3 ram running at 1333mhz . I then bought 16gb ddr3 ram running at 1066mhz and it works fine. Are you sure you didn't get the wrong mhz?


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Double check to make sure that your new RAM is the correct speed for your computer. Your Mac uses PC3-8500 RAM. You may have bought faster, newer RAM, such as PC3-12800. This RAM is technically backwards compatible with your computer, but it forces the bus to run at the faster speed, which it can't do. I'm having trouble finding the Apple support article about this, but it works like this: The bus can only run at the 1067 MHz speed of the RAM it was designed for. The computer will only run at the speed of the slowest RAM module installed. If you have PC3-8500 RAM in both slots, that's great, that's what the computer was designed for. But if you put PC3-12800 RAM in both of the slots, the bus will try to run at the speed of that faster RAM, which it can't do. With one slow RAM module in one slot, and one fast one in the other slot, the bus will run at the speed of the slower one, which it's supposed to, and then slow down the faster RAM so that it can also work (this is currently how I'm running my 2009 white MacBook).

Pretty sure it should give off some warnings though, so it's weird that it's not.


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RAM from the ifixit upgrade kit has the following label:

8GB, DDR3, PC3-8500, 1066MHz, 200 PIN

The computer is running better and faster with 10 GB, but since I bought the kit (ifixit didn't have individual 8 GB RAM in stock) I doubt they will let me return just one of them if I can't get them both to work together.


shoppingamc was there ever a solution to this? I am having the same exact problem with my wife’s Macbook Pro.


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