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Major problems with Thunderbolt display & MB Air

196879 Views 431 Replies Latest reply: Mar 26, 2014 6:27 PM by benduncalf33 RSS Branched to a new discussion.
  • zpjet Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    May 22, 2012 2:01 AM (in response to bazaarone)

    Interesting, my Air/TBD combo works fine after installing fresh system... anyone else tried that? I do still have to install a bunch of things which may break it, mentioned above.

  • zpjet Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    May 22, 2012 8:37 AM (in response to bazaarone)

    Re: Clamshell mode on MBP + Thunderbolt Display is broken with latest updates

    Actually, I ended up ditching my /Library/Preferences/com.apple.windowserver.plist file and that seemed to fix things for now.  Note I found I had to do this under single-user mode, deleting via a normal boot didn't work.

     

    I wish I read this before reinstalling... worth trying.

  • zpjet Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    May 29, 2012 2:32 AM (in response to bazaarone)

    OK my latest update I hope. After system reinstall, everything works as it should. Eg I come from outside, plug a power and TB, and the system appears at TBD. Then I open the lid, short wait, blue screens - and both displays are on, arranged as they were before. I close the lid, again wait, blue - and I have system at the TBD again.

     

    So far I enabled FileVault, and installed VMWare. I guess my

     

    /Library/Preferences/com.apple.windowserver.plist

     

    was messed up by moving from old laptop, and I wish I found this advice by John May before I reinstalled.

     

    https://discussions.apple.com/message/17546300#17546300

     

    BTW I did have one single occurance of USB/FW/Ethernet problem. I came to my set up when the lid was closed and hit spacebar to wake it up. It didn't so I used mouse, and it did but no devices (keyboard, Ethernet, FW disk) were connected, although the display was recognised correctly. So I unplugged and plugged the display and everything went to normal.

  • diasleo Calculating status...
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 8, 2012 7:46 AM (in response to zpjet)

    Are you using Lion?

     

    I'm trying to find /Library/Preferences/com.apple.windowserver.plist

    But was not lucky. Even eneabling show hidden files I cannot find this file. But I was able to find it on /System/Lybrary/LaunchDaemons/

     

    I'm a bit afraid to delete it.

    I'm using 10.7.4 and I did not boot yet on single-user mode. Since I was trying to find the correct file first.

     

    My TBD is driving me crazy. Since now, even restarting my MBA does not assure It will recognize the plugged in mac usb keyboard. Some times I have to reboot mopre than once and then I, after pugging the TB cable, and not seeing the keyboard, I unplug the USB and plug it into another port.

     

    It's annoying, and plain wrong. Doesn't seam like an Apple product behavior!

  • zpjet Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Jun 8, 2012 8:31 AM (in response to diasleo)

    I don't know if removing windowserver will solve USB problems. But it helps to solve with TBD attaching, disconnecting and closing lid.

     

    Removing the plist in SUM

     

    You have to restart in Single User Mode. Restart and hold cmd-S. if you have filevault, you will have short graphical screen to log in, otherwise it will be only white text on black screen.

     

    You will then do what two lines after "If you want to make modifications to files:" say. Press <Enter> after each command line:

     

    /sbin/fsck -fy

     

    (wait until it says ok)

     

    /sbin/mount -uw /

     

    Then go to the folder with command

     

    cd /Library/Preferences

     

    Then check that these windowserver files are there

     

    ls -l *windowserver*

     

    Remove them

     

    rm *windowserver*

     

    And leave the single user mode

     

    exit

     

    And one more time

     

    exit

     

    After restart everything should be better. The windowserver plist file will get recreated - not immediately but eg. after changing resolution or connecting another screen.

  • Erik Johnson3 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 8, 2012 8:55 AM (in response to diasleo)

    I was experiencing the same MBA/TBD problems for a couple of months.  Long story short, I was counseled by a very knowledgable Genius Bar tech into performing an SMC reset of the MBA, which not only solved the TBD problem but also recurring problem with the fans coming on when unnecessary.  I've been operating smoothly with MBA and TBD ever since, with absolutely no problems discovering and supporting USB devices on the back of the TBD (I am using a USB keyboard on my TBD right now).

     

    SMC Reset Instructions:

    http://support.apple.com/kb/HT3964

     

    Very simple, and, basically, just resets a bunch of hardware management registers.  Doesn't result in any loss of data or changes to the logical configuration of the MBA. 

     

    Give it a try and post your experience back here.

  • zpjet Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Well. I was performing many SMC resets and it didn't help to solve my issue.

     

    Deleting "damaged" plist might be the solution if you transferred data from a previous machine. I suppose new Air wouldn't suffer the problems (as machines in the shop I bought the TBD didn't have).

  • diasleo Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 9, 2012 11:59 AM (in response to zpjet)

    Hi Zpjet,

     

    thanks for the detailed instructions.

     

    unfortunately I was not able to perform the removal. I got to the Preferences folder. But when I used the:

    ls -l *windowserver*

     

    The answer I got was that it was not able to locate a *windowserver* file or folder.

    So, I was not able to remove it.

     

    I got confused, This file should be there, shouldn't it?

     

    Ahhh, I did everything without being connected to the TBD. Right?

    I don't have FileVault.

     

    And I already have tryed the SMC reset several times now, without any significant success.

     

    Thanks for any insight.

  • c00ltrance Calculating status...
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 11, 2012 10:33 AM (in response to diasleo)

    Some additional input to the TB Problem Thread... Using my MBP late 2011 13", Intel 384MB graphics. When I connect the Thunderbolt, after some time the mouse and keyboard respond erratically, sometimes the mouse pointer jumps across the screen and keystrokes are repeated for now reason. It seems to be happening sooner when I play for example YouTube video or other graphics-intensive applications.

     

    Exact same happens when the MBP early 2011 13" of my girlfriend is connected, so I guess that rules out any hardware problem with my MBP, right? She is going to do a clean system (Snow Leopard) install to see if that resolves the issues, as they have not been there from the start. Other forum threads also seem to indicate problems arose or got worse after subsequent updates.

     

    Any thoughts?

     

    Note: both machines are fully patched with all updates.

  • c00ltrance Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    +1 for the combination with using Apple's bluetooth keyboard and trackpad.

     

    Something similar here: using my MBP late 2011 13", Intel 384MB graphics. When I connect the Thunderbolt, after some time the mouse and keyboard respond erratically, sometimes the mouse pointer jumps across the screen and keystrokes are repeated for now reason. It seems to be happening sooner when I play for example YouTube video or other graphics-intensive applications.

     

    Exact same happens when the MBP early 2011 13" of my girlfriend is connected, so I guess that rules out any hardware problem with my MBP, right?

     

    Note: both machines are fully patched with all updates.

  • diasleo Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 13, 2012 6:10 AM (in response to bazaarone)

    Last night I just noticed things are a bit stranger than I had thought at first.

     

    I'm running into a hard time when trying to use the TBD as a docking station. For me, the main issue is I plug the TBD and my USB keyboard is not reckognized most of the times (mac USB keyboard plugged to the TBD). So, I'm not able to close the lid, because I have no way of typing...

     

    • It behaviors like this now even if a just rebooted the MBA (20 days old MBA, with an updated Lion), and than plug TBD.
    • It behaviors like this if the MBA has waken from sleep, and than I plug TBD.
    • It behaviors like this if I boot the MBA with TBD plugged in.
    • I've tryed to SMC reset. No changes.
    • I've tryed to first plug TB and than plug magsafe, and the the other way around (no change here, though apple manual suggests you should always plug TB first);
    • I've tryed to erase windowserver.plist, using ZPJet instructions, but I was too dumb to find the file, or my Lion does not have it at all.

     

    And now, I've noticed something odd (I mean, more odd). I had just booted, plugged Kb on TBD USB and it was dead. So I tryed to change USB ports, plugging Kb to the middle USB port. And it worked.... ?!?!?!

    Than I tryed to plug it back to USB #1. Nada happend. It was dead again. Plugged it to USB #3. Nada again.

     

    So, I plugged it back to USB #2, and it kept working.

    I though there was something wrong with USB ports 1 and 3. So, plugged my Time Machine drive into #1. And it worked just fine. So, at least for Data transfers, USBs are working normally.

     

    I left MBA on all night and tryed to swap the Kb plug again. Once more, it worked ok just on the USB 2.

     

    But I'm pretty sure all ports were working nice with the TBD when I started using it a couple weeks ago. Because I had plugged the kb into them and had it working fine.

     

     

    Not sure What can be done any more... Things are REALLY strange with this TBD issues...

     

    Thanks for any help.

  • diasleo Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 14, 2012 3:18 PM (in response to diasleo)

    HI everyone,

     

    I just want to report that I found out and solved my problem. It turned out to be much simpler. Today, after spendind 1 and a half hour with Apple Care on the phone, they've asked me to bring my MBA and my TBD to an authorized support representative.

     

    I  did, and strangely everything worked fine there. We've disconnected TBD 10 times, booted MBA and it worked always like a cham.

     

    The only thing that was diffrent from my home setup was the keyboard. So, it turned out the Kb was the one thing to be blamed. I'm typing this on another Kb at home and it's everything fine.

     

    The other Kb was just a couple months old, but it probably has a USB problem.

     

    Thanks for all the support and good luck for all.

  • Jung Hong1 Calculating status...
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 15, 2012 1:54 PM (in response to bazaarone)

    I'd like to provide an update from my end.

     

    After swapping my thunderbolt display, reinstalling Lion, trying different peripherals, resetting PRAM & SMC, etc I was still having issues on my 2011 13" MBA. This was from Jan - Apr.  End of April, they finally swapped out my MBA.

     

    Everything has been working rock solid for the past month and a half.  Turns out (at least for me), the MBA's thunderbolt functionality was bad (at a hardware level).

     

    No more plugging in my thunderbolt display and praying/hoping that it works with the fear that I'll have to reboot my computer.

     

    Good luck to everyone else.

  • zpjet Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 15, 2012 2:16 PM (in response to Jung Hong1)

    yep and in my case reinstall helped it completely. go figure.

  • HaraldHM Calculating status...
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 22, 2012 2:44 PM (in response to Phips)

    Beautiful, Phips!

     

    This worked for me. SMC reset you called it? I've tried some other SMC reset directed by other guys which did not work. But your directions did: Have a MBP 2011 with TB 27' display, Lion, hardwire keyboard and Magic Mouse. In addition to some other stuff connected to the display's USBs. The keyboard did not work connected to the TB. But after conducting your proposed steps, it works:-) Hopefully for a while...

     

    Thanks anyway!

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