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  • c warren Level 1 (0 points)

    The procedure for deleting the solved the problem; disappearance of the icons is definitely the result of this plist being corrupted.  However, after it is replaced and the icons are set up again, something keeps re-corrupting it, and I don't know what.  I have to do the replacement about every 8 startups or so.



  • macjack Level 9 (51,622 points)

    It may be a poorly written menu extra (icons on the left-hand side of the menu bar are called "menu extras").

    If you can restart sucessfully every time with your system default menu bar extras only, then you need to determine which one is the culprit that's hosing your prefs.

  • c warren Level 1 (0 points)

    Thank you again, macjack. I have no nonstandard menu extras items in the basic Finder menu; I use only the ones suppied by Apple, no hacks.  All left-side menu bar items do indeed show on every startup, whether the right-side problems exist or not.


    I did have the "Develop" menu selected to show in Safari.  That, of course, shows in the Finder menu on the "menu extras" side, when Safari is running.  I have turned it off.  Since I use Safari nearly every time I use the computer, it is a possibility.


    I have no extra menu extras options enabled in Mail, Office, or any other software I use frequently.


    Will update.

  • macjack Level 9 (51,622 points)

    macjack wrote:


    It may be a poorly written menu extra (icons on the left-hand side of the menu bar are called "menu extras").

    Dyslexia strikes again. I meant the right-hand side.

    If it happens with no menu extras other than Apple default items, then we'll need to look further.

    It would be ironic if the Apple Develop menu extra was the problem!

  • c warren Level 1 (0 points)

    The problem was definitely with the Application Switcher Menu icon in the Menu Extras (right side).  Application Switcher Menu is a neat 3rd party program that carried over OS 9's method of switching from one open application to another.  I find it better, faster and easier than any alternative Apple offers in any version of OS 10, including Launchpad, Mission Control or the Dock.


    The shame is, it worked fine through all versions of OS 10 through Lion (10.7x), even though it hasn't been updated since 2009.  Only in Mountain Lion (10.8) has it caused a problem.


    So, back to replacing the once again.  I did that a week ago, and ran all of the Menu Meters 3rd party icons, as well as Sophos and Tech Tracker icons without any problems at all.  Today I turned off the Menu Meters icons and added Application Switcher menu - and after 4 starts, the problem reappeared.


    Sigh!  'Bye ASM.  It was a good run.

  • Beacher3 Level 1 (0 points)

    I love ASM. Was happy to pay Frank for it. Been using it since OS9. I'm also having problems with it and M.L. (10.8.2). Sometimes it works sometimes it doesn't. When it doesn't work, (single application mode), I have to go to the ASM Preference Pane (System Preferences) and open it. Once I do, ASM starts working and switching Apps to only show the front application on screen (my favourtite attribute and the reason I use it). I have emailed Frank about this but he never responds. I feel he may have abandoned ASM for Lion and Mountain Lion? It also wrecks havok with Mail and the well documented "disappearing text cursor issue". If you switch apps in the middle of creating a new email when you come back to Mail, your text cursor will be gone. There are a couple tricks to get it back. I don't believe this is ASM's fault? It is a bug in the OSX switch and hide business that ASM does if you are in Single Application Mode. There is a lot of chat about this issue, but for me and ASM, it's a royal pain.


    So .... question .... for simple switching and seeing ONLY the front application on screen (automatically hiding other open apps), is there an alternative to ASM for 10.8.2 ???

  • Beacher3 Level 1 (0 points)

    Well I think I have found the answer to my question about ASM. From Frank's website ......


    ASM no longer available for purchase

    You may have already noticed that development of ASM has stopped a while ago. While it was a quite successfull piece of software in the early days of Mac OS X, only few people have a use for it these days. So, about a decade after I put it on the market, I hereby declare end of life for ASM.

    Thank you very much for the support through all the years!

    Best wishes,

    Frank Vercruesse

    (November 25, 2011)

  • c warren Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks for the update, Beacher 3.  I went to the site as well, but missed the message.  I too had paid for ASM, and would gladly do it again (as I told Frank when I tried to reach him unsuccessfully).


    Maybe we need to ping on Apple a bit, to restore the functionality we used to have - a void filled by ASM that Apple continues to ignore.  Its alternatives are just not user-friendly.

  • Beacher3 Level 1 (0 points)

    Hey C. Warren,


    Yes I found that information on Frank's site a bit by accident just poking around. So far, for what I use it for (single application mode), ASM is "sort of" working in M.L. Like I mentioned, I have to "trigger it" occasionally but once triggered it seems to keep working. A bit of a P.I.T.A. for sure but I really like the single application mode. That feature alone seems like a relatively easy thing to make happen for someone with a little programming skills. Sadly, I am not that person.


    Maybe in 10.8.3, if they fix the disappearing cursor thing in Mail, which seems to have some tie in to the "hide others" bit that ASM is doing in the background ... ASM might just start working properly again??? Who knows, stranger things have happend? However, that being said, it is a dead product. Wah.

  • Showoff0877 Level 1 (0 points)

         I've had the same problem for a few months with missing icons in the menu bar, finder window and others. I rifled through settings of every sort in my Macbook with no resolution. After a hefty amout of interweb research, I have found that, while your third party software may be dead, the intial problem with these conditions is the latest Apple update. A temporary fix is to boot up in safe mode which will rectify the issue, then boot into normal mode. This worked for me for several days as I was careful not to let the computer go into hibernate, which is the trigger for the problems of this thread. But once I did let it hibernate, problem was right back. Nothing but empty space in my menu bar where the spotlight, battery, bluetooth, wifi, and Apple TV icons normally reside. But others like the message center icon, my name, clock, Time Machine(well the hands anyway, the circle arrow was missing), remained along with a couple third party icons for a memory monitor and a temp monitor/fan speed app. So more web research and I came to the conclusion that the update must go. So, discovering that Macbooks have the ability to restore systems files and folders over the internet without any discs and most wonderfully without losing or having to move one single piece of your info that is on it, I got busy at it. For precaution's sake, and never having used the lossless restore, I forced a Time Machine backup for the absolute latest system image, made a backup of important files on one external HD, and a redudant backup of important files on another external HD.


         I then restarted, held Command "R" at the startup tone to enter restore mode, and selected the option to restore without losing files(can't recall the exact option name). I was promted to enter my password for my iTunes account so my Macbook could download various necessary files and then it began doing it's thing. The initial stage of downloading files took an hour and fifty minutes which upon completion advised of the beginning installation process which was a 32 minute deal. Once that was completed, it rebooted and I was greeted with my lock screen that was just as I'd left it incuding paswword was the same, lock screen photo was the same, and even the little profile pic was the same. I signed in expecting to spend more time downloading many of my apps, especially third party, but to my surprise everything was, as I said before, just as I left it. All of my apps were there, including third party utilities, programs like GIMP and Blender, and even Reason and Audacity were still as I'd left them. The only thing I had to download again was an updated version of iTunes, which also included updates for Safari, Aperture, and the infamous "MacBook Air and MacBook Pro Update 2.0". I selectively downloaded iTunes and the update for Safari and passed up the graphics update and the one for Aperture since I neither have or need it, nor have the cameras for which it extends functionality for Aperture. You can choose the parts of the update that you wish to download by simply going to the App Store updates section and instead of clicking "Update", click on the "...More" selection at the end of the description section. This brings up a breakdown of the update in which you can selectively choose which parts of the update to download.


          Everything else in my MacBook was normal, including all of my icons returning to their rightful place of residence, and I suffered not a single loss of any info that I've found to date. I did the restore just inside of a week ago and after many hours of use and many shutdowns and many sleep and hibernate cycles, I have had no return of any of the conditions that were previously irritating me since the update was initially installed. Hopefully Apple will rectify this problem in the next update, but until then, I hope this bit of advice can help alleviate the stress for others.

  • xpaulso Level 1 (0 points)

    Showoff0877 I had exactly the same issue. I didn't notice the issue until my macbook had hibernated. Unfortunately with the newer macbook pros and airs, they hibernated after sleeping for 70 minutes. Of course I could change that default setting for now. sudo pmset -a standbydelay 43200 (12 hours)



    I'm actually curious what menu items you uninstalled?

    Also were you using Filevault?



  • Showoff0877 Level 1 (0 points)

    I do not use Filevault but it doesn't have anything to do with the icon issue. I also didn't remove any menu items to resolve the issue. The problem causing the issue with icons missing after hibernating was instigated by the "MacBook Air and MacBook Pro Update 2.0" which was suggested for all early 2012 and newer MacBook Pros and Airs. The update was some sort of graphics improvement that caused the irritating side effect of missing icons. I restored my OSX through the online option that is free from the hassle of backing up all important stuff, then reintroducing it into your computer once the fresh OSX is installed. It does it all for you, though you should make a backup just in case the unusual happens to make your experience less plesant than mine was. Once I had restored my OSX, thereby removing the graphics update I mentioned before, I simply updated my computer through the App Store as you usually would and selectively left off the graphics update. The update remained in my updates section of the app store until recently. I noticed it was gone so I figure that Apple must have figured out that it was a culprit of the icon issue and removed it. I haven't seen an update since that one for graphics improvement, so I don't know what their plan is to fix the affected computers. It has been a few months since using the method I written above and after numerous sleep and hibernation cycles, I still have all icons. You may find faster resolve just doing it the way I did to remove that update. It should work for you too I would venture to say. Good luck!

  • zhelton Level 1 (0 points)

    ASM is not dead, yet!  ASM incorprates MenuCracker v2 as part of the package.  I replaced it with MenuCracker v2.2 .  On clicking "Show ASM in the menu bar" it opened immediately.


    The process is simple.  Go to and download MenuCracker v2.2 (its free).  Then find ASM in your library/preference pane folder and right click to open the contents folder and click on Resources and drag to the trash.  Then open the MenuCracker-2.2 .dmg file and drag MenuCracker 2.2 to the Resources folder.


    My ASM problems started right after I upgraded to Mountian Lion a few days ago.  I've tried everything suggested in these threads to no avail.  Finally I found a post in h-os-x-lion/ that suggested this solution for a different app.  I thought why not.  I'm grateful that it works.

  • Beacher3 Level 1 (0 points)

    I found that by simply clicking on ASM Preference Pane in the System Preferences once M.L. had booted up, it did work.


    I have however, purchased an app called "Keyboard Maestro", and it has an app switcher just like ASM built in. Works great.


    However, all that being said, once ANY application switcher show/hide app is active, Mac Mail will still hide the text cursor. Bummer for sure.

  • gazmandhu1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I know this thread is ancient but I'd just like to thank macjack for offering a solution that worked for us. kudos!