A white screen on a Mac means that your Mac cannot start because of a system problem. This could be a hardware, software, or even firmware issue.
Although stuck on a white screen is most often caused by a system crash, it does not rule out a flaw in the Mac model design. For example, the 2011 MacBook Pro was hit by a white screen of death.
The white screen might be a little different in different situations. A Mac can be frozen on a white screen with a rotating cursor or wheel with a gray screen. Mac is stuck on the charging strip or bumps into the Apple logo. Your Mac may turn white after you enter your password at the account login screen. And the worst-case scenario is that there’s no sound, no Apple logo, nothing, just a blank screen.
How to fix white screen problems on Mac?
If your Mac starts up on a white startup screen, you can follow these instructions to solve the problem.
- Turn off all peripheral devices.
Believe it or not, this solution is simple but useful in some cases. It’s easier to isolate and identify what’s stopping your Mac from booting up. You can remove as much hardware as possible.
This includes RAM, external devices, Type-C adapters, and even a keyboard and mouse. You can even temporarily use another monitor if you have one. Later, whenever you can plug in the device and restart your Mac. If there’s a hardware problem, you’ll know about it.
It’s not easy for the hardware on your Mac to disconnect. However, you can try Apple Diagnostics or Apple Hardware Test (Mac introduced before June 2013).
- Boot into Safe and Verbose Mode to lock white screen on Mac
If the hardware is not responsible for this white screen problem then you need to check the software in safe mode. After all, Mac computers won’t boot after the latest macOS updates are frequent.
The system may not be able to handle incompatible drivers after updating macOS. Or some applications cannot be updated. Such software can cause a blank white screen on your Mac.
First of all, you need to check for any software problems in Safe Mode. You can restart your Mac and hold down the Shift key. When you see the Apple logo, you can release the Shift key.
If you can start your Mac without seeing the white screen of death, it must be a software problem.
Second, you need to start your Mac in verbose mode to find out what’s causing the problem. You need to restart your Mac and immediately hold down the keyboard shortcut Command + V. The report immediately displays when the Mac starts up. The next time your Mac freezes, you need to view a report to see which program is causing the problem.
To fix the Mac white screen issue, you can simply restart your Mac safely. You can then remove any conflicting programs. Read how to recover data.
- Reset SMC and NVRAM / PRAM on your Mac
The SMC is a logic board chip that controls all the power functions of your computer. NVRAM and PRAM are the small pieces of memory your Mac uses to store certain settings. This includes screen resolution, boot disk options, the latest kernel panic information, and much more.
If your Mac starts up at a white screen, you can reset NVRAM / PRAM by holding Command + Option + P + R while starting up. You can reset SMC by holding Ctrl + Option + Shift while restarting your Mac.
- Check and repair startup disk in macOS Recovery mode
Try this solution when you see the Apple logo on a white screen (with or without a loading bar). The Apple logo means that the system can find your startup disk. For some reason, eg. However, due to file system corruption, for example, the operating system directory cannot be loaded.
You can follow these steps to check your startup disk and use First Aid to fix Mac white screen problems.
How to repair first aid boot disks?
After the hard drive repair is successful, you can restart your Mac and see if the white screen goes away forever.
If First Aid reports that the hard drive is about to fail or doesn’t even appear in Disk Utility, you can just replace the drive. If a hard drive error is detected and you can’t fix it, you can reformat the hard drive and reinstall macOS.