For what it's worth, I thought this had dramatically improved from other circumstances, hadn't seen it in ages... then got a crash from this last night. All the usual stats; could log in through ssh, could look around, display was completely frozen and could not be updated. Lots of kernel errors of "NVDA(OpenGL): Channel timeout!"
Machine could not reboot or do anything else until powered down by holding the power button down for a few seconds. So, yeah. Still there. Still a kernel/driver bug.
Here's what I have found after testing a few things. Firstly what tends to happen is Safari always crashes when I have 'Facebook' open and then my whole system seems to crash after this. Any body else notice this?
Not at all. What third party plug ins do you have installed in Safari? What extensions? What anti-virus/secutity software, LittleSnitch, Mackeeper, etc.?
I've got click to flash, addblock, fastest tube, & facebook photo zoom.
I dont have any anti-virus or anything like that installed. I turned off click to flash as it gave me problems on Youtube.
I would be guessing, but the last two, especially fastest tube, sound like likely culprits. I only run Glimmerblocker. Much more reliable than Addblock. Try uninstalling those plugins (move them to the trash but don't empty) then test Safari. If it works better, then but the plugins back in their folder one by one, testing Safari each time. That may narrow down the problem.
What were you trying to accomplish holding down "s" and/or "d"?
I cannot find a post from you with details about your problem. Please provide a liink to it or re-post.
If your having "lock up" problems you feel are somehow related to Safari or any web browser, then the best thing to do is remove every plug-in you have and see if the problem goes away. then re-install the plugins one at at time to see when/if the problem comes back.
Its even better to do a manual install of the OS and import your data, but not your programs. Re-install those by hand or from the APP store.
Verify everything is stable - if not, call Apple. Then start addig back your plugins one at a time.
Thanks Richard. The fact is that, having read many threads about "spinning wheel freezes", I'm not sure that it has been established that these lockups have anything to do with any browser or browsers. What I was trying to do with "s" and/or "d" was, in the former case, trying to force the machine into single-user mode in order to get a prompt to allow me to do an "fsck". In the latter, it was an attempt to get to the Apple Hardware Test.
If neither of these are what I should be doing (I'm a newbie) then I'm all ears.
I have a mid-2010 Macbook Pro 13" running ML 10.8.3.
My particular freeze can happen often (after 20 minutes usage, even without browser open) or I go an hour or so before it happens. It even happens overnight when the thing is not even being used.
@geordienz ewwww. That really *****!
The "key" to diagnostics is to find a pattern. If you can figure out cause and effect, then it can usually be fixed. But things that happen "at random" are near impossible to fix.
One idea is to open the diagnostic message log before you go to bed, leave that on the screen. In the morning, if the machine is frozen, the last item listed might be the culprit or a clue to the culprit.
Also, you can open this log after recovering from a crash and read it back to the time of the crash and see what it says. You can tell when it crashed by the jump in the time-date stamps each line starts with.
The "bad" news is there is no guarantee that a message will be written before the machine locks up - its a race! Also, when reading the console log you may see a lot of scary looking messages that are actually harmless. Please don't panic. Google search anything that looks suspicious to see if you can find a website talking about it. Or post it here - in a fresh thread, not a reply to this message please.
Access the log by running the application "Console" in your Applications/Utilities folder.
You should not have to use FSCK on a disk formatted with Apple's Journaled system. I reccomend you do use Disk Utility to check your drive for errors and fix file permissions. The Apple page that describes how to do that - including the FSCK procedure you were trying is here: http://support.apple.com/kb/TS1417
I also reccomend you make a bootable OSX disk. That can be a DVD, USB key, or external drive (USB or FireWire). The procedure to make such things are here:
You can run Disk Utility from the "Recovery" partition - a good first step - by following the instructions here: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT4718
If Disk Utility detects a serious problem, it will direct you to make an external bootable OSX disk and re-run disk repair from there. If it thinks your disk is damaged, it will tell you to "copy off what you can" and start over. Not a good message!
If reviewing the console log does not reveal any likely suspects, then you have to rule out a hardware problem. The easiest way to do that is book a Genius bar appointment and let them boot your machine from their diagnostic disk. They will want to keep it overnight. If the machine crashes, its a hardware problem and their software will detect and identify it.
If it does not crash, then its almost certainly a software problem with something you installed. Figuring that out is usually fastest by doing a fresh Factory Install of OSX. Then import your user data, but not your programs or settings. Do those by hand, one at a time.
If you have a large external drive, this is actaully pretty easy. You can make the external a complete clone of your MAC, which gives you a bootable disk that has all your stuff! You can then wipe and re-install from that external disk. And make a disk image (dmg) file of your built-in disk BEFORE each major change. Because its very easy to RESTORE a disk from a DMG disk image file. So, when you find the machine acting up, you can roll it back to the last state and either skip what broke it, or figure out how to fix/avoid the problem. And so on.
Thank you again Richard.
Firstly, I discovered my Mac is 2011, not 2010 as I previously said (my generous son gave it me).
Subsequently discovered that, to get the S or D interruptions to work, it's cmd+S or alt+D (figure that out).
AS you suggested, there was no need for FSCK but I'm so desperate I will try anything.
Hardware check showed no errors, extended HW check is running as I type (on PC ) .
Interesting scenario this morning, was watching football on a stream - stream froze for a few seconds (as happens, nothing to do with my problem) when it came back there was no sound. I attempted to increase volume using keyboard keys and I noticed there was no response. Stream continued to play, in fact it continued to play until the end of the game (40 mins later), despite the fact I sussed everything else had frozen (even the system clock). Sure enough. when I then attempted to mouse-click to get to System Prefs, spinning wheel came up and everything froze.
The Genius bar and store service techs have access to software that is not allowed to the general public. I only trust a check - over 24 hours or more - using that software to "clear" hardware.
However, I groaned when you said you watch "streaming" TV. Because the player programs and plugins are not tested very well (if at all) and can cause soooo many problems.
Especially if you happen to install two that are mutually exclusive.
Definately open up Console and see what kinds of messages are being logged.
How many TV Players do you have?
Did you install any plugins or - groan - "free" software??
Rest easy Richard - I have not installed any programs or plugins to facilitate this. Content has played perfectly well via Chrome.
The only thing I have "installed" is a Thunderbolt display, my issue has only appeared since then, although a couple of weeks later, so I'm think it's unlikely to be that - even alhtough I have been less than impressed with the behaviour of the display in some respects.
One thing i have noticed, though, is that if I have an image opened in Photoshop, and it's window is partially off-screen, when I drag it on screen the part of the image which was off becomes "gobbledigook" for a few seconds before it renders properly. This was not happening before I had my freezing issue.
I will be re-installling my OS and if that fails I'll hit up the Apple experts.