Just to do a quick rundown on what you have done so far in terms of troubleshooting:
- Repair Permissions.
- Verify the start up disk. Does the disk utility indicates if "Macintosh HD appears to be OK"?
- Boot from installer disk and use the" Repair Disk" option.
Now a few questions:
- When you mean "initiate any software", do you mean like initiating software update or app such as Safari or iPhoto?
- When was the last time you installed something on your computer?
I think you have done everything in regards to avoid a total system reinstall. But before we go with the steps of reinstalling the OS, I will suggest one more step, since you mentioned that the problem might have arised after installing 10.6.7.:
- Reinstall OSX 10.6.7. Update via Combo updater:
- Get it from here: http://support.apple.com/kb/DL1361
Report back after installing the combo update.
About combo updates as a trouble shooting steps (from Cnet):
Apple's Combo updater includes all the files necessary to bring a major release of OS X from any previous version to the one represented by the update. For example, if you have the OS X 10.6.7 Combo updater then you can use it to update any Mac from any version of OS X Snow Leopard to OS X 10.6.7.
While Software Update will also provide you with this option, the Combo updater, like the Delta updater, is more universal and can be applied to any Mac system, regardless of its hardware or software configuration. Additionally, it can be reapplied to a Mac that has already been updated. Because of this, a Combo updater is frequently used when troubleshooting odd problems in OS X since it can be used to essentially replace a number of system files with fresh ones, without requiring a full reinstallation of OS X.
If I boot up and do not initiate any software and then shut down, shut down occurs normally. If I initiate any software, I get a blue screen and the endless spinning wheel.
Based on his description, it's safe to assume that he means the gray startup spinning wheel, the one that is often seen after an OSX Update.
In response to vea, any software other than Mail creates the problem and I am not sure when the last time I installed anything was, although I'm sure I have. I have located a clone backup of my computer made some time ago, and it too is 10.6.7. When I booted to it the problem did not exist. It's obvious that something created the problem since that backup. I am going to reinstall 10.6.7 with the combo updater to see if that might correct it.
Thanks for the tip,
I had this problem, and it is a problem with the permissions on the root directory.
Open Terminal and execute: "ls -ld /". You should see: "drwxrwxr-t@ root admin". If you don't see "root admin", then execute: "sudo chown root:admin /"
It will ask for your password.
Try it, it solved my problem
This reminds me of the following Jacob, have you installed an iTunes Update recently? I did it one time and it moved changed my permissions from the root user, this resulted in a slowdown when booting up my MacBook, I used the same command ( sudo chown root:admin / ) that plcn suggested and viola the problem was fixed with the overall slowdown. This might be the reason why now you have a permission problem that affects your Mac's shutdown ability. Try that command I know it fixes a lot of permissions problems.
Ok... The next step... Sledgehammer approach. This what you can do next. Since you mentioned that your time machine back up does not shot to have the problem that you are currently experiencing on your OSX partition, I will suggest doing a Time Machine restore before considering reinstalling your operating system. the steps to restore your OSX instllation from a Time Machine back up are in the link below:
The instructions are for 10.5 Leopard, however the proccess is similar on 10.6 Snow Leopard.
A word of notice: Get a usb flash drive, and transfer any important files that you have added since your last TM back up if you need to.
Please post back with your results good luck.
I really appreciate the help. However, I do not want to risk losing anything in the process so I will just live with it. It's not that serious a problem and from the sound of things, Lion will be out soon. Hopefully, that will resolve the problem. If not, I will consider the alternatives then.