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New external firewire HD makes my Mac freeze

1970 Views 14 Replies Latest reply: Jan 25, 2013 2:04 PM by Cheese Man RSS
maximegousse Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
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Feb 13, 2011 3:03 PM
It took me some time to isolate the issue but I think that I have nailed it.

Some background: Got iMac (March 2009) with Snow Leopard. Everything used to work like a charm... until I installed a firewire external HD.

I used to have (still do) an external USB HD (1 TB). Decided to get a 2TB disk for Time Machine. Chose a firewire disk to "save" on USB ports.

Ever since, when I switch from one user to another (say from me to my spouse's session) the iMac would freeze up. Not crash (well yes), but freeze right there. Needs rebooting.

Rebooting would give me the, oh no, "blue screen of death" (I know this is a Windows term, however very appropriate here too). Would need to boot up with the Terminal in single user mode (Cmd S) and run fsck and delete the application bundle file (see here http://support.apple.com/kb/TS1545?viewlocale=en_US).

I am not sure that my issue is Time Machine... but ever since I turned off my external firewire drive, I no longer have the issue.

Help !!
iMac + iPhone 4 + iPad, Mac OS X (10.6.6)
  • Pondini Level 8 Level 8 (38,710 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 13, 2011 8:55 PM (in response to maximegousse)
    Are either of your user accounts using File Vault?

    I assume you're having this when using +Fast User Switching.+ Do you get the same results if you log off one account, then log on to another?
    24" iMac 9,1 2.66 GHz; 4gb; 640 gb, Mac OS X (10.6.6), dual-band AEBS
  • Pondini Level 8 Level 8 (38,710 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 14, 2011 9:45 AM (in response to maximegousse)
    maximegousse wrote:
    File Vault ??? I do not know what this is?


    Look in +System Preferences > Security > File Vault+ for each account. See if it's on for either one.

    Your earlier reference to the Apple article isn't clear; did that fix the problem? Was the ApplicationEnhancer bundle found? If this happened a second time, was it found again? If so, something must have reinstalled it.

    Yes, it happens during fast user switching.

    No, did not try when logging off one account first. Would sort of deafeat the purpose of fast user switching...


    But it might be worth trying, to see if the problem continues.
    24" iMac 9,1 2.66 GHz; 4gb; 640 gb, Mac OS X (10.6.6), dual-band AEBS
  • Pondini Level 8 Level 8 (38,710 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 14, 2011 1:13 PM (in response to maximegousse)
    maximegousse wrote:
    My reference to the article points to the solution I mus apply everytime the iMac hangs. So, yes, everytime the applicationbundle (or whatever) file is recreated I guess.


    That's rather strange.

    Did you install any software for the new disk? If so, uninstall it.

    Or any other software since this started?

    I will chk tonight if the vault option is "on"


    Worth a look, but highly unlikely to be the problem, even if it is on.
    24" iMac 9,1 2.66 GHz; 4gb; 640 gb, Mac OS X (10.6.6), dual-band AEBS
  • Pondini Level 8 Level 8 (38,710 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 14, 2011 6:00 PM (in response to maximegousse)
    maximegousse wrote:
    File Vault is NOT activated.


    Good.

    Did you install any software for the new disk? If so, uninstall it.

    Or any other software at about the time this started?
    24" iMac 9,1 2.66 GHz; 4gb; 640 gb, Mac OS X (10.6.6), dual-band AEBS
  • Yachtty Calculating status...
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 24, 2011 12:17 PM (in response to maximegousse)
    Hi there. I have same problem. New iMac kept freezing until I disconnected Firewire 800 external HD. Had to press power button for 10 seconds before it would power down. Same drive also USB & works fine on USB, except a little slow. HDD is not used for Time Machine backup. I use fast user switching but normally don't switch between accounts. This problem seems to have been around for some time & Apple can't or won't fix it.
    iMac, Mac OS X (10.6.6)
  • pdarroch Calculating status...
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 24, 2011 12:30 PM (in response to maximegousse)
    I had the same problem, particulary using iMovie. I have 2 ports on my external drive and I just changed to the second one and this worked. Since I have updated to 10.6.7 my iMac will not boot and hangs with on the screen with the apple logo and only when I disconnect the drive and restart will the machine come on. I can reconnect the drives and they are recognised, but not a good solution. may look for a firmware update for the drive to see if this helps.
    iMac, Mac OS X (10.6.7)
  • Cheese Man Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jul 2, 2012 4:51 PM (in response to maximegousse)

    I am having a similar problem with a LaCie external HD plugged in via FE 800 to a 17" MBP running snow leopard.  It will just freeze up but not totally as i can still move the mouse.  It seems that if I leave the laptop the drive goes to sleep or something and won't wake. I cannot shut down or reboot r anything until I disconnect the drive, then suddenly everything goes. It's very annoying.  I do not not want to damage the drive by manually disconnecting but have no choice. Any ideas?

  • MikailNDG Calculating status...
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    Aug 5, 2012 4:46 PM (in response to maximegousse)

    I have the same problem with a LaCie Fireware 800 with a brand new Mac Mini.  I have my iTunes library on the drive and after a few hours, itunes hangs and the finder hangs if I select the Firewire drive.

  • wayveilleux Calculating status...
    Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 1, 2012 7:32 AM (in response to MikailNDG)

    I have the exact setup (instead with a MacBookPro) with iTunes DB on the external firewire 800 LaCie drive and same problem, it hang after a few hours. Does any one find a fix ? Some say that we should disable the auto sleep on the external drive.

  • Cheese Man Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 25, 2013 2:04 PM (in response to maximegousse)

    Yes this is definately a thing. Firewire 800 seems to cause a strange freeze.  I say strange because when it would happen on my older MPB with snow leopard, I would still be able to move the cursor but it would not click.  It was like an almost but not quite freeze.  Then, once I disconnected the 800 drive, everything I had just tried to do while it was stuck happened, like switching applications and mouse clicks.  It's like it causes a weird build-up/bottleneck that gets released. 

     

    Now it is happening on my newer iMac with Mt Lion but what happens is if I reboot, at the login screen I will have no cursor using either Magic or Mighty Mouse.  Only when I unplug the Firewire 800 does the cursor suddenly appear.  I have called AppleCare but they do not show it as a known issue, however it is know to us. 

     

    Apple engineers do not monitor these boards so we could be talking about something for years and unless they get notified, they'll never know it needs to be addressed.  The way to let them know is through http://www.apple.com/feedback/.  Every message gets read and sent to the right department.  So be sure to let them know when something needs to be addressed.

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