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  • nevin247 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks, its been working great after using the external thunderbolt cable from Apple.

  • troyfromacton Level 1 (0 points)

    I have the exact same issue. Replacement display does the exact same thing. Been to 2 Genius appointment with the system, could not replicate the problem. Did identify intermitent power faults from the ports. Got back from Apple store yesterday, everything including printer and scanners plugged into the display worked, for about a half hour. This morning can't get anything to work. I bought a Joint Venture membership as I am trying to operate my business using this computer set up. Bad idea! Not much help at all, in fact I did not get to see anyone at my appointment until 20 minutes past my appointment time. I paid for a high end system and figure my business losses to be approaching 7K so far.

    I wish Steve Jobs was still here. This is the the kind of thing he would have heads rolling for, but not todays Apple. Now I hear, "this is unusual, we have not seen this before".

    HELP Apple!! Is anyone listening!!


  • MyFaithfulLabAssistantBeaker Level 1 (0 points)

    Hi Troy,


    The short answer is, NO, no one from Apple is listening to this thread. This is a forum for users to share experiences and not a bug reporting or complaint line.  As you can tell from all the prior entries on the Thunderbolt display, the device has not lived up to expectations.


    Several people have reported some success with use of outboard-powered USB hubs. Here one plugs a POWERED USB hub into the Thunderbolt display and then plugs the USB devices into that hub. This clearly works for some types of problems, although others (such as failure to recognize the connected devices) continue to occur sporadically. I have done this for both my Thunderbolt displays and the difficulty with USB devices has become somewhat less of a problem.


    Thunderbolt displays also have been reported to fail to connect ethernet plugged into the display to the MacBook Pro or Air. This is the case for both my displays: no matter what I do, they do not conduct ethernet. I have tried new cables, various cabling sequences, etc. all to no avail.  Some people have reported getting new controller boards installed at the Apple store with improved performance. I have given up entirely on ethernet through the display and now plug in an ethernet cable directly to the MacBook Pro whenever I need a really fast connection.


    You will likely not find Apple Inc. to be helpful on this -- they have not been so for others, at least according to published reports.  Apple has not recalled the T-bolt displays or indicated that the company is aware of any problems with them. A good relationship with the local Apple store managers may be useful. There are reports of swapping out controller boards repeatedly until one is found that works well. This type of support is exceptional and your account suggests that the local store is not.


    If you connect/disconnect your base computer quite often you may wish to try the powered hub approach. I have used several different powered hubs successfully. You may wish to invest in one capable of 2 ampere output -- many are limited to 500 mA which is not enough to charge an iPhone or iPad and power connections to other devices at the same time. I have my powered hubs Velcro (r) mounted on the back of the Thunderbolt display with the cables wire-wrapped and the power supply paralleled with the T-bolt power cable.


    You may also, of course, simply connect the output of your powered USB hub directly to the MBP or MAir, bypassing the Tbolt display entirely. This routes all the USB through a single connection to the MBP or MAir. thus allowing you to have your USB devices in a more or less static arrangement. This is also a good test of the functioning of the MBP or MAir and the USB devices -- if this non-Tbolt-routed USB configuration does not work, the problem lies in your MBP or MAir, not the display!


    Like many other Apple products, first-generation Thunderbolt displays are more likely to be flaky than later models, even though the specifications remain the same. You may find that a Tbolt display purchased a year from now works flawlessly even though it is, to all outward appearances, the same as the one you own today that does not.


    My Tbolt displays both provide a very nice visual display that is the primary reason I bought them. At the time I did, they were the ONLY Thunderbolt compatible displays available. Thunderbolt peripherals are gradually appearing now and these may make the display even more attractive as a base station for use with a MBP or MAir but I would certainly not purchase such devices early in the product cycle. That is for pioneers. Pioneers can be identified by the arrows sticking out of their slumped over bodies.


    BTW, regarding your statement about business losses, the Apple warranty and user agreements strictly limit the company's liability for your use of their equipment and software. This is also the case for all major commercial computer and software manufacturers.  There are simply no guarantees that anything you buy will work as you thought it would. If a device or app meets the published specification -- and for connections to other devices this means meeting the standards specified for the connection alone -- it is unlikely that you will be able to demand any remedy. Your access to legal action is determined by the consumer laws of the jurisdiction in which you purchased the device. Every now and then someone will propose a class action suit against Apple for a supposed fault in a particular device model. Cursory exploration of this option should lead you to conclude that it is not an attractive path to choose.


    Also BTW, I don't think Steve Jobs' management of the retail support chain was all that different from what is happening now. Moreover, although clearly damning by faint praise, I have not found any other big manufacturer to provide better support than Apple. Many are much worse.


    Thus endeth the reading for this day.

  • troyfromacton Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks for the insight, Lab assistant. I agree with everything you have said. I just want others to know that until these problems get resolved, they should not rely on the MB/Thunderbolt technology for your business needs. It will cost you far more than the over priced system itself. I realize there is no recourse with Apple for business losses, nor would I venture down that road. 

    You are correct. The Apple support has been good, and arguably better than most. The problem appears to be a lack of adequite Beta testing before product release.

    At this point I am left with my original beliefs about Apple. Great for the college crowd, and the Facebookers, but not ready or capable of playing in the world of business yet. I hope they can get it right and in fact are really trying to help me out, which I appreciate. Unfortunately, its a costly experience.

  • trippel311 Level 1 (0 points)

    Brand new Thunderbolt display and MacBook Pro as of 12/21/13 and have the same problem - my Apple keyboard (and Logitech mouse into keyboard) is plugged into the TB display and is not always recognized. - I've been reading all I can find about this, and learned a bit so I thought I would share what I know in case it helps others.


    The problem appears to be related to under-powered ports on the TB display. Two fixes I've read about that may help:


    These aren't real fixes, but since Apple has nothing to offer, so I thought I would post them. Hope they help.

  • Tigervision Level 1 (10 points)

    I have a brand new rMBP.

    Hooked to a thunderbolt display.


    When I close my lid on MBP... the thunderbolt flashed black, but then turns back on and shows my MBP as if lid is still open.


    Anyway to have the thunderbolt turn off when I close the lid of my MBP?

    I don't see option in settings.



  • T-DBL Level 1 (0 points)

    Well, this is one long thread and I had no idea that that TBD had issues with the USB drives. I purchased my TBD and macbook today (Yes I dropped a nice coin today) and Im at home finishing up with the set up. I attempted to plug in my iphone and my external G drive and I noticed that the TBD would not recognize the devices. Yes, Im very disappointed and part of the reason I decided to go with he TBD was due to the extra USB connections. As of right now I do not have a solution, however I plan to call Best Buy where I made the purchase and hopefully resolve.

  • Erik Johnson3 Level 1 (0 points)

    The problem has long been confirmed as a electrical current limitation of the TBD USB hub.  The USB controller in the TBD limits output to the USB standard specification, which is a maximum of 500mA output.  Apple appears to be interepreting the USB standard to the letter, whereas some other manufacturers will take liberties and allow a much higher current output (i.e. over 500mA) through the controller (which can cause problems, too).


    The easiest way to solve the problem is to simply get a powered USB hub and hang it off the back of the TBD.  Plug any high-current devices (e.g. external USB hard drives, etc.) into the powered hub, and plug your keyboard and iPhone dock into the TBD.  Good to go.  There are many powered hubs; I happen to be using the D-Link DUB-H7, which is widely available and very inexpensive.  I've had this setup running for two years now and not a single problem since. 


    Is it a travesty that Apple still hasn't addressed this problem, even with a simple error message stating that, "The USB controller has disabled all USB ports on the Thunderbolt Display due to a current overlimit condition."  Yes, it is a travesty.  They regularly shoot themselves in the foot in this regard.  However, it is also good to know that there is such a strong user community out there with common interests and answers to these issues.


    Best regards.

  • DCam10001 Level 1 (0 points)

    Hi Tigervision,


    As far as I know, that behavior is by design. I a rMBP hooked up to a thunderbolt display with the lid closed quite often at work. It allows for a big, single monitor, while being able to stash the laptop away underneath the monitor on a small desk.


    If you want to put whole system to sleep, you can still choose 'Sleep' from the Apple menu. If you only want to sleep the Display, you could set up a Hot Corner to do it in System Preferences => Desktop & Screen Saver => Screen Saver => Hot Corners...


    I know a friend of mine once changed his laptop to NOT sleep when the lid was closed. He found instructions on Life Hacker, to do so by running a command in the Terminal. There might be something similar here?




  • Tigervision Level 1 (10 points)

    Thanks DCam...


    You are right.... if you have an external keyboard and trackpad/mouse.... and you close your lid.... your TB should stay on (Clamshell mode).


    I'm very curious.... assuming you have a wireless keyboard/trackpad/mouse.... turn off your blue tooth at the top right of screen..... so external devices are not functioning.... close your rMBP lid... the thunderbolt will stay on.... it should not!!  It should go off since you have no external devices hooked up (i.e. blue tooth is off). All this time keeping megasafe attached.


    Even if you manually put rMBP in sleep via power button or hot corner or apple menu.... and you close your lid... the TB comes back on.  It should not if you have NO external devices hooked up (TB pops back on about 50% of the time).


    So this is my point... I wish TB would go off like it should if no external keyboard/mouse/trackpad hooked up.


    I have noticed if no external devices hooked and you pull the megasafe from rMBP and close the lid... the TB goes to sleep.


    Again... I would be appreciative if you: turn off your blue tooth at the top right of screen..... so no external keyboard/mouse/trackpad functioning.... close your rMBP lid.  What happens to TB display?  On or off??

    My bet is... it is on... and it should be off




  • rodaboss Level 1 (0 points)

    Using MB Air.  I seem to have resolved all my TB/USB issues.  I have a powered USB hub (separate power supply)  I plug that into my TB, and plug all my USB(keyboard, etc) into the powered hub.  Problems solved regarding USB keyboard going dead.


    A note.  My usb keyboard (Extended Apple) did not work, even plugged directly into the MB Air.  It's a power thing.

  • benduncalf33 Level 1 (0 points)

    I have 2 TBD... I have issues with this one:

    Thunderbolt Display:


      Vendor Name:          Apple Inc.

      Device Name:          Thunderbolt Display

      Vendor ID:          0x1

      Device ID:          0x8002

      Device Revision:          0x1

      UID:          0x00010001005DEAA0

      Route String:          1

      Firmware Version:          22.2

      Port (Upstream):

      Status:          Device connected

      Link Status:          0x2

      Port Micro Firmware Version:          0.0.21

      Cable Firmware Version:          0.1.18

      Cable Serial Number:          C4M238700K9DNWFAT


      Status:          No device connected

      Link Status:          0x7

      Port Micro Firmware Version:          0.0.21




    This one is not as bad.. but the colour is awful - too blue!

    Thunderbolt Display:


      Vendor Name:          Apple Inc.

      Device Name:          Thunderbolt Display

      Vendor ID:          0x1

      Device ID:          0x8002

      Device Revision:          0x1

      UID:          0x00010001008D87A0

      Route String:          3

      Firmware Version:          26.2

      Port (Upstream):

      Status:          Device connected

      Link Status:          0x2

      Port Micro Firmware Version:          2.0.7

      Cable Firmware Version:          0.1.18

      Cable Serial Number:          C4M324600Q0DNWFAY


      Status:          No device connected

      Link Status:          0x7

      Port Micro Firmware Version:          2.0.7

  • anuraka Level 1 (0 points)

    I have a problem like benduncalf33.My thunderbolt display is not working (black screen) but camera facetime is work and speaker is work.

    Who have any idea to solve this problem please told me. I try to solve this problem for 2 weeks but I can't solve this problem.I try to solve by buy apple cable thunderbolt 2m to connect direct to apple thunderbolt display but problem still alive.

    I use macbook pro early 2011 connect to apple thunderbolt display 27".



    Please don't told me you should reset SMC or PRAM because I reset it about more than 30 times.

  • mohater Level 1 (0 points)

    Hi Folks,


    I have a similar problem, MBP on a thunderbolt display.  A fix I found that has worked everyday so far:


    Before attaching power or thunderbolt cable to the MBP from the display, I plug my phone into a lightening cable that's plugged into the display.  The phone begins charging.  Then I plug in the mag adapter and thunderbolt from the display to the MBP.  The keyboard is detected right away (no messing around).


    No idea why this works, but it has been consistent.  Even when removing the laptop (no sleep or shutdown) and coming back, the steps need to be repeated to make sure the keyboard is detected and powered.


    Mouse is via BT, so no USB problem there.

  • David Bregande Level 1 (65 points)

    I have just returned from a very expensive logic board repair, my second in a year, or my MBP 2012. I am suspicious and very paranoid of my Thunderbolt display now, since from day one I have needed to unplug and replug either the power cable and/or the thunderbolt cable in order to wake it from sleep. I am scared to death of using it now and plan on bringing my whole setup to the Genius Bar and having it tested. I am very afraid that the dual cable on the back of my display is culpable. Would this make sense to anyone?


    FWIW, I did purchase an external TB cable to try and circumvent the situation: no telling if it will work.