How to Reset the Power Manager & the PRAM on a MacBook Pro

Written by elle smith
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How to Reset the Power Manager & the PRAM on a MacBook Pro
The MacBook Pro has a chip located on the logic board that controls power functions. (Getty Images/Getty Images News/Getty Images)

Parameter RAM, also known as PRAM (pronounced Pea-RAM) is a small chip that stores system settings the computer accesses before the operating system fully loads. These settings are stored even when the computer is shut down. If you experience problems such as your Bluetooth or Airport not connecting, a mouse that doesn't respond as it should, a loud fan that runs continually or a fully-charged battery that displays as 50 per cent, you may need to reset the PRAM or the System Management Controller (SMC), which replaces the Power Management Unit (PMU) on the MacBook Pro.

Skill level:

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    Reset PRAM

  1. 1

    Power down your MacBook Pro. Disconnect the power adaptor.

  2. 2

    Press "Command+Option+P+R" simultaneously as you restart the computer. Since holding these keys requires an awkward stretch of the fingers, it's best to find out where they're located before restarting your MacBook. You'll need to work with both hands.

  3. 3

    Hold down "Command+Option+P+R" until you hear the start-up chimes repeat twice, then release the keys.

    Reset SMC

  1. 1

    Power down your MacBook Pro. Disconnect the power adaptor and all plugs, peripherals and cables. Wait 15 seconds.

  2. 2

    Lay your computer face down on a soft, clean cloth. Lift the battery compartment's locking lever, then lift off the door. Pull the tab to remove the battery.

  3. 3

    Turn the computer upright again, then press and hold the power button for five seconds and release.

  4. 4

    Reinsert the battery into the MacBook Pro, reversing the steps you took to remove it.

  5. 5

    Reconnect the power supply. Press the power button to boot the computer.

Tips and warnings

  • Try some basic troubleshooting before resetting the PRAM or SMC. These simple tasks may solve your issue.
  • Force quit any stalled applications by pressing "Command+Option+Escape."
  • Put your MacBook Pro to sleep by choosing "Sleep" from the Apple menu. You might also try restarting your MacBook or choosing "Shut Down" from the Apple menu.

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