Mac Pro 2009 to 2010 firmware update

How to upgrade a Mac Pro 2009 4,1 firmware to a Mac Pro 2010 / 5,1.
and a wired Apple keyboard.

Norgzki2 posted:
For all those hitting a brick wall with upgrading to 5.1 whilst running Yosemite with the 5770 error:

Download original 5.1 Firmware from the Apple site:

Now download the 5.1 firmware tool from here:
Lance McVickar
Lance McVickar
5 minutes ago (edited) make sure to just download don’t try to open the folder on dropbox just got to the upper right hand corner and find download next to “share” that should give you the .zip file then unzip once downloaded.
1. double click original firmware from apple and mount DO NOT CONTINUE TO INSTALL PKG
2. double click 5.1 firmware tool and follow instructions to upgrade to 5.1
3. once RAMDISK is created, follow instructions to shut down mac
4. start mac and hold down power button until you hear an audible dong and release power button
5. firmware will now install, wait until mac restarts itself.
6. enjoy 5.1 and download Sierra!

Here is the link to download the firmware updater
You need to do this if you are running El Capitan first before doing the firmware update.
1. Click the  menu.
2. Select Restart…
3. Hold down command-R to boot into the Recovery System.
4. Click the Utilities menu and select Terminal.
5. Type csrutil disable and press return.
6. Close the Terminal app.
7. Click the  menu and select Restart….
If you decide later you want to re-engage SIP (and I earnestly hope that you do), repeat these steps, changing csrutil disable to csrutil enable instead.

download and use at your own risk and follow the on screen instructions. Run it off your internal system drive with nothing connected to your mac but mouse, keyboard, monitor and have the original mac video card installed that came with your 2009 mac pro.
This installer came from I recommend joining and getting it from the original source instaed of my link above.,852.0.html

You will learn a lot from others who have done the install and have upgraded their macpros in by joining the forums there.
All credits too MacEFIRom for creating this firmware updater.

Important: The update may take a few minutes. Do not unplug, shutdown, restart or disturb your computer while the update is taking place and follow the onscreen instructions.
NOTE FOR THOSE WITH THE 5570 ERROR fix is below.
this is 5570 error fix. UPDATE: Solved by downloading manually firmware EFI 1.5 for from, mounting DMG (not installing PKG inside). Then run firmware upgrade tool and it ok now. thanks to Russell Smith for posting this below.

Also after the firmware update, if you installed new 1333 ram in your mac pro you need to ZAP your PRAM to get the faster ram to show up. To ZAP your PRAM start up your Mac Pro and before you hear the boot chime hold down the “command”, “option”, “p” and “r” keys all at the same time, continue holding them down until you hear the boot chime a second time, it may take 15-20 seconds then let up on the keys and the Mac will now show you have the 1333 ram installed.


Author: admin

50 thoughts on “Mac Pro 2009 to 2010 firmware update

  1. The ONE BIG THING Lance leaves out is the need to DISABLE SYSTEM INTEGRITY before runing the 5.1 firmware patcher. Otherwise, the upgrade won't validate, your system will reboot, but still with 4.1 firmware. See …

    Disable SIP
    You'll need to disable System Integrity Protection (SIP) in order to flash the new firmware.
    Restart your Mac Pro and hold cmd+r to boot into the recovery partition on your boot drive.
    Once in Recovery Mode, go to the Utilities menu at the top of the screen and click Terminal
    Enter the following command: csrutil disable
    Hit return and restart your Mac Pro as normal.

    ONCE YOUR UPDATE IS SUCCESSFUL, be sure to RE-ENABLE SIP. Restart in the recovery partition, then run: csrutil enable.
    REBOOT your machine and let it load to the desktop. Open a new terminal window and enter the following command to check the status of SIP
    csrutil status
    If all was successful, you should get a line back that reads: System Integrity Protection status: enabled.

  2. hi! ive try try it to success. but i can't. After rebooting there's a just gray screen. no rectangle bar. I have a g120 card but wired keyboard(just have wireless keyboard) Am i need a wired keyboard? thanx

  3. Are there any differences between a flashed 2009 and a 2010 Mac Pro? Will new GPUs and High Sierra NVMe (via PCIe) bootability be the same? Any functional differences at all?

  4. I had trouble updating mine and I found 2 possible problems:
    1) was running El Cap (10.11.6).
    2) was booting from a SATA SSD
    When I took a rotational drive and installed Mountain Lion (10.8.1), from there I was able to make the firmware upgrade.
    Also, you should (must?) have an original Graphics card. I still use the GT120 (512MB) so that was not a problem for me.

  5. i am getting some problems when i attempt to download the Mac Pro EFI Firmware Update my computer keeps telling me this type of file can harm your computer but it does not give me an option to download anyway is their something i need to disable to download the software?

  6. With High Sierra you’ll need another FW update. It’s automatic with the installer, and safe to do.
    Need to shutdown and hold power button until the beep again. High Sierra then installs normally on the 2009 Mac Pro.

  7. Question from a novice, that knows barely anything about working inside a Computer. I have a working 2010 Mac Pro tray containing a good CPU and memory, can I just slide it into a 2009 Mac Pro or do I still need to flash the firmware on the 2009 Mac Pro before I do this? Or perhaps nothing will work for this?

  8. I followed the instructions on this, but when I restart it, the bar gets halfway before it just takes me straight to the login screen, and it's still 4.1. Now I just purchased this mac pro refurbished, and it already came with Sierra on it. Will that be a problem trying to upgrade to 5.1?

  9. hi wish to ask as my mac already is flashed for 5.1 and now as i wish to install mojave and need to flash new efi, i got and issues as my oryginal graphic noto work with metal, and new work but have no mac flashed firmware, do i need for efi update and boot logo ?

  10. All i got when a ran the firmware is… This software is not supported on your system. I have a mac pro early 2009.
    Software: OS X El Capitan. version. 10.11.6

  11. Lance… I'm having trouble with the PRAM reset. I tried to do this a few times with my computer, but my new RAM that I added still says 1066 mhm instead of 1333 even after pressing (option+command+P+R) simultaneously. I let go of the keys after I hear the second apple tone. Any suggestions on what to do next?

  12. I keep trying to do this on my 2009 Mac Pro but I have no luck. I downloaded the apple firmware update, and the firmware updater tool. It runs, makes it' sRAM disk, tells me to shutdown like everything is good. But when I hold the power button while it boots up, I get the flashing and the tone, but it never actually enters the firmware updaters. Any ideas?

  13. Hey Lance McVickar, thanks for the great video!

    I ended up attempting to first follow steps 1 – 6 to upgrade my El Capitan 2009 Mac Pro from another YouTube user. However, the user didn't explain that if I had an El Capitan version I'd need to use steps 1 – 7 above that you wrote. I see you wrote,"You need to do this if you are running El Capitan first before doing the firmware update." Well… I already ran the update, and my computer has stayed at 4,1. I even tried to do steps 1 – 7, but I couldn't get passed step 4 since a blank gray screen is displayed, and nothing else happens. In order to get out of it, I have to do a force shutdown.

    So far my computer is running normally so that's good, but I' like to know if I've done anything wrong in the process and if you have an solutions to help me out. Thanks.

  14. Im having the 5570 issue and when I click on Norgzki's link, the download link to the 5,1 update1.5 is not active. Have there been any new locations where this can be downloaded? Thanks

  15. I have done this 10 times and I hold the power button down till the long tone and it goes gray then boots like normal I can’t figure out what I’m doing wrong!!!

  16. I am struggling to update the Firmware for my Mac Pro, 2009 to 2010. I launched the updater, shut down the computer and started it while pressing the start button until the light flashed and the tone came, immediately release the start button and the computer is still 4,1 rather than 5,1, any suggestion


  18. hello, I need your help, I have a macbook pro model A1286, 2010, the problem is that i was working fine, when suddenly the mac shutdown, and when I turned on again the grey screen appear, and I don`t have the system, I need to update the firmware of this mac, where can I find the firmware and what is the process? thank you

  19. I was able to get the RAM disk installed to the Desktop. The computer did not shutdown on it's own. I tried to shut it down myself and then restarted and held down the power button until I got the tone and then released immediately. The screen went through it's loading process but when it finished it did not restart again. It simply went to the login screen and when I went to the system preferences to see if the firmware had been updated it had not. I repeated this twice. Is there something I may have done wrong?

    FYI the second time I tried to run the firmware tool I got the 5570 error message and I just kept trying it and eventually it went through. But the end result still did not update to the new firmware.

    Currently Running Yosemite.
    Hardware Overview:
    Computer Info below.
    Model Name: Mac Pro
    Model Identifier: MacPro4,1
    Processor Name: Quad-Core Intel Xeon
    Processor Speed: 3.32 GHz
    Number of Processors: 1
    Total Number of Cores: 4
    L2 Cache (per Core): 256 KB
    L3 Cache: 8 MB
    Memory: 16 GB
    Processor Interconnect Speed: 6.4 GT/s
    Boot ROM Version: MP41.0081.B08
    SMC Version (system): 1.39f5
    SMC Version (processor tray): 1.39f5

  20. Hey Lance.  You helped my update my 2009 cheese grater to 5,1 and installed Sierra on it and worked great.  Just tried updating to High Sierra.  The install said it needed to update firmware, then when through the install.  But no dice.  Keeps bailing out on the HS install (downloads fine though).  Any thoughts?  Right now, it's just a brick.

  21. My main "About This Mac" window still says "Mac Pro (Early 2009)"  but in system report, it reads "MacPro5,1".  Any idea how to change that main page identifier to say "2010"?

  22. Hay Lance, had done the upgrade and BIOS is now upgraded to MP51.0084.B00 however SMC Version (processor tray & system) remains at 1.39f5 instead beeing …11.Is that something to worry about or must to fix?
    Again: Gratefull for you tutorial, wish to add that MacPro 2009 5.1 runs and boots perfect on PCI SSD with High Sierra, no trouble with BoothCamp (Windows7Pro 64Bit). I also suceeded to upgrade using NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680 2 GB . Thx again and hope seeing your respond. Cheers!

  23. Thanks for the tutorial Lance! I no longer have the original graphics card for my 2009, instead, I have a Sapphire HD 7950. As I understand it, this will prevent my firmware upgrade. Can I pull the card out once I shut down the Mac Pro (at the 1:48 mark in your video instructions) and then restart without the card? If so, will this solve my issue by allowing the update to be successful? If this gets me around the roadblock, I assume I can put the Sapphire HD 7950 back in and be up and running with 5,1. Is this correct or do you suspect new drivers will need to be downloaded?

  24. Late to the game here. The links to the 5.1 firmware tool are not working anymore. I was able to download the first link from apple no problem. Any chance you would be able to link me with a new link? Thank You!

  25. I just updated the firmware to 5.1 for my 2009 Mac Pro. However I am still not getting HDMI audio. Please help.

    Also sidenote, after I did the update I upgraded my graphics card to a AMD 5970.

  26. Please help – I am having a pretty unusual issue with this. I was able to perform this just fine on my first 4,1 Mac Pro, but my second 4,1 (of the same stock specifications) will not complete the update. Upon starting up, the machine's power light flashes and I let go as soon as I hear the tone; but, without fail, it brings up the normal boot screen once it restarts a second time, rather than bringing up the firmware progress bar. Upon going into System Profiler, I notice that it still identifies as a 4,1 Mac Pro. If I go back to the firmware update tool, it starts me where I was. I've tried this five times in a row, with no luck. How could this be? There's no error or anything – it just simply doesn't work.

  27. Hello everyone! I had a hard time doing the upgrade. Finally, worked. So if you are getting the error, here is how to fix it. Clean install of Lion or Yosemite. DO NOT do anything after installation. Mount the 1.5 firmware and run the upgrade software. It will work!! It did for me. Having a clean install fixed my issue. Best luck to you!!

  28. Hi McVickar, tks for your tutorial. 🙂 NOW my machine is running with 5.1
    I have a little issue. I already update my MacPRO to 5.1 (MP51.007F.B03) and I did the proceed about PRAM RESET to read DD3 with 1333Mhz. BUT my system only accept 1066Mhz. What can I do to fix that? Tks for any help!!!

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