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[FAQ] READ FIRST! Laptop Frequent Questions

Feartech

Moderator
Joined
Aug 3, 2013
Messages
21,885
Motherboard
Asus N752VX-OpenCore
CPU
i7-6700HQ / HM170
Graphics
HD 530 1920 x 1080
Mac
  1. iMac
Mobile Phone
  1. iOS
1598264548409.png

This is an updated FAQ from the Original Thread:
https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/faq-read-first-laptop-frequent-questions.164990/post-1045259

Before asking a question, many common questions are already commonly asked and answered, and many answers exist in the sticky threads in this forum:
https://www.tonymacx86.com/forums/mojave-laptop-support.196/

If you ask a question that is answered by this FAQ, you'll likely be directed right back to this FAQ.

Finally, this is NOT a troubleshooting thread. Please do not ask questions regarding your specific problem in this thread. Open a separate thread instead. Only if you have a question regarding the content of this FAQ, or have a an idea for an additional Q/A in this thread, reply here.

Q. Where do I start?

Make sure your profile reflects your hardware details.

Please provide complete details in your profile. Do not use the signature. You can use the signature for other systems (eg. a desktop) which you're not asking for assistance within the laptop forums.

To edit your profile: https://www.tonymacx86.com/account/account-details

The profile has 3 fields which are visible with each post you make. The three fields should be filled out as follows:
Mobo: manufacturer/model + bootloader(Clover/OpenCore)
CPU: detailed CPU model + motherboard chipset
Graphics: all graphics devices + laptop internal screen resolution (This includes your Intel Graphics, check under Windows -> Device Manager -> Display Adaptors)

For example, typical Skylake laptop:
Mobo: Asus N752VX (OpenCore)
CPU: i7-6700HQ / HM170
Graphics: Intel HD530, 1920 x 1080

Note: When specifying your bootloader, if using Clover or Opencore legacy, please be sure to specify "Clover Legacy" or "OpenCore Legacy". Specifying "Clover" or "OpenCore" will be assumed as "UEFI"

As mentioned above, if you have multiple systems, use the signature to place details for the second system. It is best to have your profile represent the primary system you are working with. So, for purposes here in the laptop forums, please make sure your profile indicates laptop details (desktop details can be easily placed in the signature).

To edit your signature: https://www.tonymacx86.com/account/signature
Please keep your signature details for each system within a single line.

Read compatibility overview: http://www.tonymacx86.com/laptop-compatibility/106791-laptop-compatibility.html

Clover Guide:

OpenCore Guide:

Q. Does Sierra 10.12.x work?
There are some serious issues, some unsolved with Sierra.

Refer to this pinned thread in the Sierra laptop forum:
https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/readme-common-some-unsolved-problems-in-10-12-sierra.202316/


Q. Does High Sierra 10.13.x work?
There are some new issues with High Sierra, some of them inherited from Sierra.

Refer to this pinned thread in the High Sierra laptop forum:
https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/readme-common-problems-in-10-13-high-sierra.233582/

Q. Does Mojave 10.14.x work?
There are some new issues with Mojave, some of them inherited from High Sierra.

Refer to this pinned thread in the Mojave laptop forum:
https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/readme-common-problems-changes-fixes-on-mojave.255823/

Q. Does Catalina 10.15.x work?
There are some new issues with Catalina, some of them inherited from Mojave.

Refer to this pinned thread in the Catalina laptop forum:
https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/macos-catalina-10-15-problems-and-workarounds.288383/post-2043385


Q. Can I still download El Capitan?
Yes.
Read here: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT206886

Q. Can I still download Sierra?
Yes.
Read here: https://support.apple.com/en-ca/HT208202

Q. Can I still download High Sierra?
Yes.
Read here: https://support.apple.com/en-ng/HT208969

Q. Can I still download Mojave?
Yes.
Read here: https://support.apple.com/en-gb/HT210190


Q. What if I don't have access to a Mac?
There is a guide here, for users that do not own a mac and would like to use windows to create the USB installer:
https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/...-installer-using-opencore.296375/post-2108796


Q. I tried Unibeast but my laptop just reboots when using it. How to fix?
Unibeast is for desktop computers, it is best to use either Clover:
https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/...ler-on-laptops-with-clover.148093/post-917900

or OpenCore guide:
https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/...-installer-using-opencore.296375/post-2108796


Q. Is there a guide for my laptop?
Check in the guide sub-forums. For example, laptop guides forum for Catalina:
https://www.tonymacx86.com/forums/catalina-laptop-guides.201/

Google is also useful in helping you find things.

Q. How to install kexts?
With later versions of macOS, Mojave and upwards, it is best to keep them in your EFI

So for Clover:
EFI/CLOVER/kexts/Other

And for OpenCore:
EFI/OC/Kexts

Q. Is it possible to preserve my existing Windows installation?
Dual boot using Clover:
  • you can install OS X provided the following conditions are met: EFI partitition >= 200MB, no MSR partition
  • if Windows is installed legacy, you'll have to re-install (or convert to GPT/UEFI) unless on a separate drive (GPT issue mentioned above)
http://www.tonymacx86.com/multi-booting/133940-mavericks-windows-8-same-drive-without-erasing.html

To determine whether Windows is installed legacy or UEFI, run MSINFO32.exe and check "BIOS Mode".

Summary:
  • OS X requires GPT, so if your Windows install is legacy, must convert to UEFI/GPT
  • OS X doesn't like the MSR partition, so you have to remove it
  • OS X requires 200+mb EFI partition, so if yours is smaller, must increase the size
Dual boot using OpenCore:

Same options above with Clover also:

Verify you have EFI/OC/Bootstrap/Bootstrap.efi
config.plist settings:
Misc -> Security -> BootProtect -> Bootstrap
UEFI -> Quirks -> RequestBootVarRouting -> True

OpenShell:
Remember to add this to both EFI/OC/Tools and config.plist -> Misc -> Tools

DVMT-prealloc
Most laptops only ship with 32MB as standard. A lot of Asus laptops has the option in the BIOS to change this to 64MB (for 1080 size screens) or 128MB for anything higher than 1080

If your laptop does not have the option to change this, you can add this to your config.plist:
Code:
<key>framebuffer-patch-enable</key>
                <integer>1</integer>
                <key>framebuffer-stolenmem</key>
                <data>AAAwAQ==</data>
                <key>framebuffer-fbmem</key>
                <data>AACQAA==</data>

under the:
Code:
<key>PciRoot(0)/Pci(0x02,0)</key>
more information can be found here:
https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/...h-with-32mb-dvmt-prealloc.221506/post-1498955

and also this may be worth a read as well:
https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/...in-insydeh20-bios-laptops.165104/post-1045936

You may want to make the change more permanent, in that case, you will need to mod your BIOS to allow this change, bios-mods.com is an excellent resource which you should look over

Q. My keyboard and/or trackpad are not working. How to fix?
Keyboard/trackpad: Depends on PS2 drivers. There is no native support for PS2 devices in OS X. Correct drivers depend on what the manufacturer of your trackpad is.

There is good support for Synaptics here: https://github.com/acidanthera/VoodooPS2

Newer laptops have trackpads connected via the I2C bus. There are kexts available:
https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/voodooi2c-help-and-support.243378/

Also, with I2C trackpads, you will need to have your battery setup first

Q. My USB ports are not working; or internal bluetooth, camera, or other device is not working. How to fix?
Use this guide:
https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/...to-usb-port-configuration.286553/post-2029768

Q. Is my card reader supported?
Most card readers are not supported. Some USB card readers can be made to work, but most are PCIe.

If you have a supported JMicron card reader you may be able to use the kexts provided by JMicron on their website (older ProBook laptops use them, for example).

There is an experimental driver under development for other PCIe card readers. See here:
http://www.insanelymac.com/forum/topic/321080-sineteks-driver-for-realtek-rtsx-sdhc-card-readers/

Q. I'm using Clover/OpenCore and my EFI partition is gone from my HDD. How to get it back?
Use EFI mounter from here:

Q. Audio is not working. How to fix?
AppleALC: https://github.com/acidanthera/AppleALC
more information can be found here:
https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/an-idiots-guide-to-lilu-and-its-plug-ins.260063/

Q. Ethernet is not working. How to fix?
Realtek GbE: https://www.insanelymac.com/forum/topic/287161-new-driver-for-realtek-rtl8111/
Realtek FE: https://www.insanelymac.com/forum/topic/296190-driver-for-realteks-rtl810x-fast-ethernet-series/
Atheros: https://www.insanelymac.com/forum/t...lcomm-atheros-ar816x-ar817x-and-killer-e220x/
Intel: https://www.insanelymac.com/forum/topic/304235-intelmausiethernetkext-for-intel-onboard-lan/
Broadcom: https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/fakepciid-broadcom-bcm57xx-network-oob.155984/


Q. WiFi/bluetooth is not working. How to fix?
WiFi: depends on having compatible hardware. Recommendations:
BCM94360NG is the best NGFF/M2 card into the market right now, it's basically an Apple BCM94360CS2 into a NGFF/M2 Form Factor, both WIFI and Bluetooth works OOB without a single kext or config.plist edit.
Airdrop/Handoff/Continuity/instant hotspot and all the other features

BCM943252HMB or BCM943252Z (depending on required form factor)
BCM94360HMB or BCM943602BAED (depending on required form factor)
BCM94350ZAE (not recommended, tends to have issues)

Use AirportBrcmFixup.kext to enable this non-native WiFi hardware:
https://github.com/acidanthera/AirportBrcmFixup

Bluetooth: WiFi hardware mentioned above has a built-in bluetooth controller that connects to the USB bus.
Must configure USB correctly (as per guides linked from this FAQ), and install required firmware loading kexts.
Read here:
https://github.com/acidanthera/BrcmPatchRAM

Also, you may find BT4LEContiunityFixup.kext useful in enabling handoff/continuity features:
https://github.com/acidanthera/BT4LEContiunityFixup

Be aware that some BIOS implement a so-called "whitelist". A whitelist prevents you from installing cards that the OEM has not deemed compatible. In many cases, you won't know whether your BIOS implements a whitelist until you attempt to replace the WiFi card.

Use Hackintool->PCI List to find out what you have. Compatible chipsets and the procedures for making them work are covered here: http://www.tonymacx86.com/network/104850-guide-airport-pcie-half-mini-v2.html

Note: If the device is not listed in post #1 of the linked WiFi guide, it is not supported. RaLink WiFi and Realtek PCIe WiFi are simply not supported and must be replaced with something compatible.

Good choice: BCM94352HMB (or BCM94352Z if your laptop needs NGFF/M.2 2230). Also, the NGFF BCM94350ZAE is a possibility.

Note: BCM94352HMB is easy to find and generally is $20-$30. For BCM94352Z, read here:
http://www.tonymacx86.com/yosemite-laptop-support/160258-where-can-i-get-bcm94352z.html. It can be ordered from Dell (phone them) for approx. $20.

Another choice (with 802.11ac) is the BCM94360HMB. It is a bit more native (device-id is supported natively), but also uses 3 smaller antenna connectors than are typical. So a bit more work to install. Same goes for (NGFF) BCM943602BAED if you need an M.2 2230 card.

Be aware that some BIOS implement a so-called "whitelist". A whitelist prevents you from installing cards that the OEM has not deemed compatible. In many cases, you won't know whether your BIOS implements a whitelist until you attempt to replace the WiFi card.

In some laptops, after installing supported WiFi hardware and enabling the driver as discussed above, the radio may refuse to power up. As a result, no networks are seen. Correct ACPI patches can sometimes help (eg. correct "OS Check Fix" patch). In other cases, even that is not enough (you will notice it affects both Windows, OS X and perhaps Linux). For half-mini PCIe, you can tape pin 20 to disable the "radio disable" function. For NGFF/M.2, tape pins 54 and 60.

If your laptop implements a whitelist, you may be able to rebrand a supported card to the IDs that your BIOS supports. You can then use FakePCIID.kext to convince OS X of the true identity of the device.

If you only need WiFi, AR9280 (AR5BHB92) is a good choice and is supported natively on versions prior to Mojave.

Closely related to AR9280, is AR9285 (AR5B195). It is usually bundled with AR3011 bluetooth, which unfortunately, is a poor bluetooth implementation for OS X. It also lacks 5Ghz as compared with AR9280.

AR9285/AR3011 requirements:

For AR9285/AR9287, you can also use ProBookAtheros.kext. It will even work on Snow Leopard. It is available from the ProBook repo: https://github.com/RehabMan/HP-ProBook-4x30s-DSDT-Patch (direct link to zip: https://github.com/RehabMan/HP-ProBook-4x30s-DSDT-Patch/archive/master.zip)

Stay away from 'Android File Transfer'. It will interfere with correct operation of USB and badly affects BrcmPatchRAM if it is installed. This post has some information that might be useful if you think you need to use it:
https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/bluetooth-bcm20702a0-problem-usb.185785/post-1200826

And also avoid installing Logitech mouse drivers, which are not necessary and are known to interfere with the bluetooth controller and BrcmPatchRAM.

Note: If you experience slow WiFi after a sleep/wake cycle, disable "Wake for network access" in SysPrefs->Energy Saver.

There has been some good work in regards to Intel Wifi, more information can be found:
https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/...rs-for-7265ac-on-catalina.292208/post-2074180


Q. Can I use USB WiFi instead?
There are USB WiFi devices compatible with OS X (look for devices with up-to-date OS X drivers), but they are not recommended.

The user-interface is poor and they tend to cause instability, especially with sleep.

Much better results with a compatible PCIe WiFi device (see question above).

Q. Bluetooth is working, but the Bluetooth Assistant keeps popping up. How to fix?
SysPrefs->Bluetooth->Advanced. Uncheck the boxes.

Q. Brightness controls are not working. How to fix?
Check Lilu plugin - Whatevergreen.kext and the SSDT-PNLF.dsl (or SSDT-PNLFCF.dsl)
https://github.com/acidanthera/WhateverGreen
and read up on the manual:
https://github.com/acidanthera/WhateverGreen/blob/master/Manual/FAQ.IntelHD.en.md

Q. Battery status is not working. How to fix?
If you are lucky, sometimes just having Lilu.kext and Whatevergreen.kext installed will make it work, if not, then a nice little guide is here:
https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/...for-working-battery-status.116102/post-706337

Q. My battery doesn't last very long. How to fix?
With a laptop, it is crucial that you implement power management correctly:
https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/guide-native-power-management-for-laptops.175801/

And backlight control (read above)

Also, if you have a dual-GPU setup, only the Intel graphics can be used so you will want to disable the unused graphics device in BIOS or via ACPI patches: https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/...phics-in-dual-gpu-laptops.163772/post-1036521

Q. Is there a way to make Radeon or Nvidia graphics work in my dual-GPU laptop?
Not if the discrete card is not dedicated (eg. tied to the Intel device).

The discrete graphics capability in a switched dual-GPU configuration is not supported with OS X on hacks. Best you can do is disable the discrete part with SSDT/DSDT patches. See the prior question.

If your discrete device (AMD Radeon or Nvidia) is not routed through the Intel GPU, then it is considered dedicated. Some laptops have the internal display connected to the Intel GPU and the external HDMI/DP port connected to the discrete graphics device. It is rare, but in that case you would be able to get the device to work with the external display with proper kexts and correct configuration, much like a dual-GPU desktop setup.

Q. How to make iMessages/Message work?
The comprehensive guide:
http://www.tonymacx86.com/general-help/110471-how-fix-imessage.html

A simpler guide:
https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/an-idiots-guide-to-imessage.196827/

Q. What are typical "Problem Reporting" files?
If you can't boot, a bare minimum is for Clover:
  • Boot verbose, attach photo
  • Attach EFI/Clover folder as ZIP (press F2 then F4 at main Clover screen just before collecting). Please eliminate 'themes' directory. Provide only EFI/Clover, not the entire EFI folder.
And for OpenCore
  • Boot verbose, attach photo
  • Attach EFI/OC folder as ZIP. Please eliminate 'resources' directory. Provide only EFI/OC, not the entire EFI folder.
If you can boot, but are having some other problem, describe the problem clearly and provide data...

Your zipped Clover or OpenCore folder

Attach ioreg as ZIP: http://www.tonymacx86.com/audio/58368-guide-how-make-copy-ioreg.html.

pop these commands in terminal and copy and paste the results in a text file:
Code:
kextstat|grep -y acpiplat
kextstat|grep -y appleintelcpu
kextstat|grep -y applelpc
kextstat|grep -y applehda
ls -l /System/Library/Extensions/AppleHDA.kext/Contents/Resources/*.zml*
pmset -g assertions
pmset -g
system_profiler SPSerialATADataType|grep TRIM

and also:
Code:
sudo kextcache -i /

Resources:

Learning the Hackintosh Four Letter Words

A great guide for Lilu and and plugins:

Hackintool:

USB Setup Guide:

Credit: Rehabman for the original thread
https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/faq-read-first-laptop-frequent-questions.164990/post-1045259
 
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