Thunderbolt Display won't wake up.
June 24, 2013 9:17 PM   Subscribe

I have a macbook air and a thunderbolt display and as of today, nothing happens when I plug the thunderbolt into the air-- I've tried resetting the pram/nvram and the smc on the macbook air, unplugging the display for several minutes and plugging it in with the macbook air off and on. System information says that there's nothing connected to the thunderbolt port. It worked just 3 days ago perfectly well, I've never had any problems with it in the year or so that I've had it. The power from the thunderbolt is getting to the air just fine. Anybody have any ideas or do I need to drag the thing in to an apple store?
posted by empath to Computers & Internet (5 answers total)
I need a better explanation about the 'display' you are using. Is this an external display / monitor? 3rd party? Or Apple monitor? If so, are you using Mini DVI (uses the same port as Thunderbolt) to HDMI? Or Mini DVI to VGA?

I ask because typically the problem depends on the sequence of your steps, or, your cable / adapter has already failed. Try to replicate the plugging in/start up process you did when it worked. Mac Air on, Display on, Connect Cables. Or: Connect cables, Mac on, Display on.

The more information you supply, the more I can assist.
posted by Wynkoop at 2:30 AM on June 25, 2013

Thunderbolt Display.

The steps for getting it to work normally is to just plug it into my air and it wakes up instantly.
posted by empath at 2:36 AM on June 25, 2013

Try to apply the Thunderbolt Display Firmware Update. Make sure you have applied any relevant MacBook Air updates.

First thing to try is to turn off everything. No power to the display, complete shutdown of the MacBook Air. That sometimes helps with issues like this.

Connect the MacBook Air with the Thunderbolt display already attached, and leave the MacBook Air open so you can see both screens. Hold down the command key (either one) and the "v" key. This will start the machine in verbose mode. You'll see all the computer geekery messages normally hidden on startup. On which display does it appear? It should be the MacBook Air.

If the display still doesn't work, it's time to drag it to an Apple store. Sorry, there just isn't much you can do other than that. If the display doesn't show up in the system information, it's beyond the ability of the internet to diagnose.
posted by blob at 5:47 AM on June 25, 2013

So, I know that wasn't actually supposed to fix the problem, but for some reason booting in verbose mode made it work. Don't ask me.
posted by empath at 6:18 AM on June 25, 2013

Do you have any other thunderbolt items with which to test the ports on your air? It could be the display, but it could also be a problem with the air.

Also, if/when you go in for an appointment, bring both. It will help them with the troubleshooting.
posted by bluloo at 7:41 AM on June 25, 2013

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