Or is it 4? Not that it matters much...

On our last episode, it was found that my computer started at the Apple store with their charger, but it gave a memory error. No worries - I was going to change the memory anyway. I hopped on to Amazon and ordered a genuine Apple power adapter to replace the dead generic one, and it arrived today. I had a $30 credit, so the cost of going genuine was not all that much.

I plugged in the charger and the machine fired up as expected, and thankfully there weren’t any memory errors. However, I did notice a few things that were a tad off:

1) Battery still not charging (even after SMC and PRAM reset)

2) Light on MagSafe adapter solid green

3) MagSafe adapter, corresponding section on the computer, and the area behind the memory hot to the touch

If I remove the battery (this is an A1260 [early 2008 model], so I can yank the battery easily) and fire up the machine it seems to operate normally, with only a little warmth in the areas mentioned in item 3, but nowhere near the heat as when the battery is installed.

I looked at the battery for the model number, and then started to scrutinize it a bit more. The writing seems rather cheap, there isn’t a mention of ‘Apple’ anywhere on it, and the description is in that typical broken English, in this case “Replace 15 MacBook Pro”.

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If I were to venture a guess, I’d say that this battery is generic crap and is causing excessive current draw (with corresponding heat), and is probably what killed the first power adapter (also cheap generic crap). I don’t want to kill this new power adapter, so I’ll probably avoid reinstalling it in the computer. The System Proflier app didn’t indicate that the battery had failed, but I doubt that the battery was sending correct info.

Now to source a genuine Apple battery. I shouldn’t, considering I was just recently laid off, but I’d like to have this computer complete. I’m not one to use my notebooks on battery power, but I like to have that option if only for something as simple as unplugging and relocating without having to do a full shutdown. As such, even a used battery with 60 minutes of life should be sufficient.

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So, did I miss something here, or does this diagnosis seem fair?