Motherboard reports the new T2 chip found in the 2018 MacBook Pro and iMac Pro is designed to prevent third-party repairs of the computers.
Apple has introduced software locks that will effectively prevent independent and third-party repair on 2018 MacBook Pro computers, according to internal Apple documents obtained by Motherboard. The new system will render the computer “inoperative” unless a proprietary Apple “system configuration” software is run after parts of the system are replaced.
According to the document, which was distributed to Apple’s Authorized Service Providers late last month, this policy will apply to all Apple computers with the “T2” security chip, which is present in 2018 MacBook Pros as well as the iMac Pro.
In the document, Apple tells authorized service providers that hardware repair processes are not complete until the company’s AST 2 System Configuration software has been run on the repaired machine. If the software isn’t run, the Mac will remain in an “inoperative state.”
“For Macs with the Apple T2 chip, the repair process is not complete for certain parts replacements until the AST 2 System Configuration suite has been run. Failure to perform this step will result in an inoperative system and an incomplete repair.”
The software lock will be enabled for repairs that include replacing a MacBook Pro’s display assembly, logic board, top case, and Touch ID board. On iMac Pros, it will be enabled if the Logic Board or flash storage are replaced.
The System Configuration Software is available only to Apple-authorized service providers. It connects to Apple’s Global Service Exchange and requires an Apple login to access. This makes it impossible for users to repair their new MacBook Pro at home, or have an independent repair provider to repair it for them.