Previous 1 2 Next 16 Replies Latest reply: Mar 26, 2015 1:36 PM by BFOSSEN
BFOSSEN Level 1 (0 points)

Hi All,


Wondering if anyone has this problem?


Been using TB display fine for over a year.  Connected into it are a couple of external usb hardrives, TB WD backup (which has a mini-HDMI monitor connected into it). The monitor has always worked well with the clamshell closed - seems like previous updates have fixed the odd phantom decision of which monitor should come on and when.


Over the night, after putting the monitor into sleep mode, when I woke it up all systems kicked on (I could hear the external drives working and the other external monitor turned on), but no image came up on the TD display. My macbook thought it was on, as I could sweep my mouse over into it and initiate programs on that screen (but just not see them). 


I unplugged everything from the display - still same problem, no image.  When I open my macbook up, while connected, it again thinks the display is active but there is no image.  When I sweep out, my macbook thinks the in-computer display is "Display 4".


Because of the previous nuances with the TD display, I'm hoping hope that this is a software issue, but it kind of seems like hardware.


Any insights would be great!



MacBook Pro (13-inch Late 2011), OS X Mavericks (10.9)
  • John Neilson Level 1 (15 points)

    Hi there


    I took delivery of a Thunderbolt display yesterday and this morning there was no display on it either. I was rather worried to say the least!


    Thankfully I was able to use my MacBook Air to see the support and unplugged the display totally, left it for 30 seconds and then plugged it back in and it's all working again.


    However, I then powered down my Mac Pro and went off to work. Upon coming home - the same problem!


    I know the power is ok as the power connector for the MacBook Air works. This time though I just left the monitor and after a while it sprung to life connected to the Mac Pro.


    I will monitor this as if it continues to happen I'm giving Apple a call - I did not pay the amount of money these cost to have to fiddle around to get the display to work after a few hours of the machine being powered down or in standby.

  • BFOSSEN Level 1 (0 points)

    Same story with me, John!  I ended up taking the display into a mac repair company. They ran diagnostics (which didn't find anything) and could only recreate the issue a couple of times before it started working fine again, for a couple of days in a row.  So...I picked it up; worked fine all day yesterday.  And then again, bam, this morning exact same issue - all the connected peripherals are fine, but the display itself is not kicking on (even though my computer thinks it is).


    Let's keep each other posted?





  • turbostar Level 4 (2,920 points)

    totally disconnect it again for 5 minutes


    reconnect it and do both pram and smc resets


    post back

  • John Neilson Level 1 (15 points)

    I will probably be trying this tomorrow morning when I guess it will happen again (though I hope not).


    Just to check....


    Resetting the PRAM is done by:-


    1. Reboot the Mac
    2. As soon as it restarts hold down + + P + R
    3. Wait for a second reboot sound and the system will reboot again - let go of the keys


    Resetting the SMC is done by:-


    1. Shut down the computer.
    2. Unplug the computer's power cord.
    3. Wait fifteen seconds.
    4. Attach the computer's power cord.
    5. Wait five seconds, then press the power button to turn on the computer.
  • BFOSSEN Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks, Turbostar!!! That did it (for now).  Do you know why this happens or anything I need to do to prevent it?


    Thanks again,



  • turbostar Level 4 (2,920 points)

    john, yes that's correct


    bf, those resets affect system/hw control functions and sometimes things go wonky so whenever i have random hw issues, i go there first

  • John Neilson Level 1 (15 points)

    Well this morning guess what? Yep that's right a totally blank Thunderbolt Display.


    I unplugged the Thunderbolt Display from everything and left it for 5 mins


    I plugged it back into the Mac Pro


    I reset the PRAM


    I then followed through resetting the SMC


    The Mac Pro rebooted and - nothing on the Thunderbolt Display.


    I get nothing on the Thunderbolt Display as well if I connect it to my MacBook Air.


    I am convinced that this is a fault with the Thunderbolt Display as two devices do not work with it and I am to say the least very disappointed.


    Matters are made worse for me as I got this through a third party retailler and not directly from Apple so I shall have to go through a protracted repair or returns process I guess


    I really do not know what is going on - it worked fine out of the box until I put the Mac Pro to sleep overnight - which I have done previously when it was connected to an HDTV via the HDMI with no issues whatsoever.


    I've logged a case with Apple Support now as I work away from home during the week it is not until Saturday morning though when I can actually be at home when they call. Hopefully I will get some progress then.

  • turbostar Level 4 (2,920 points)

    If you're still within a return windows, do that ASAP and just buy another one

  • John Neilson Level 1 (15 points)

    Well the policy on things in the UK may be a bit different to the country you are from. You are only legally entitled to a refund if the goods are not as advertised, not fit for purpose or of merchantable quality.


    When you purchase an item which develops a fault - even after just one day. The store is legally obliged to provide a repair, exhange and if both of those fail to still live up expectations a full refund.


    I have to allow Apple to attempt to sort this out first - I don't really want a refund. I just want a monitor that works. I have to admit I would not be happy with the offer of a repair (a lot of hassle) and would much rather a replacement.

  • turbostar Level 4 (2,920 points)

    so in the UK, it is law that simple returns for whatever reason are not allowed? stores do not have a 14 or 30 day return window just in general? i haven't shopped there in a long time, so this would be both surprising and unfortunate.

  • John Neilson Level 1 (15 points)

    Yep thats right - there is no legal obligation of provide a full refund on items purchased. You do have additional protection for distance purchases (over the phone and internet) and can chnage your mind over these purchases (within certain limits). Some stores do give a no questions asked refund on some purchases but this is not something that they are under any legal obligation to do. Basically in the UK if you buy something and change your mind you may be lucky and the store does a refund. If you buy something and it is faulty some will refund right away or replace but most will go down the legal repair, replace and finally refund route.


    This morning I got the support call from Apple and the monitor was working perfectly! I had totally unplugged it for 24 hours though. The guy on the phone was as confused as I was and as the issue is not there at the moment there really was not much he could do over the phone. The case is still open and we shall see what happens when the machine is put on an extended sleep again.

  • John Neilson Level 1 (15 points)

    Another update for you all....


    While watching a movie on the TV yesterday the Mac Pro and Thunderbolt display went to sleep and once again when I tried to wake them the screen was totally black. I called Apple again and the only thing they could suggest was to take the screen to an authorised service provider so that they can run tests.


    After going through the resetting of just about everything I got the screen working again.


    I then trawled through forums on various sites and can see that this is quite a common issue - especially if your connected computer is running Mavericks.


    Other solutions which people have used are plugging the power plug for the Thunderbolt display into a totally different power source (if that's possible in your set up). Thankfully for me it is.


    Another suggesttion which has worked for others is to disable the Power Nap feature within the Energy Saver perference pane.


    I did both of those and for the first time this morning the Thunderbolt Display woke up when I woke the Mac Pro!


    However I did get an error message that he system had recovered...


    Date/Time:       2014-06-15 01:57:42 +0100

    OS Version:      10.9.3 (Build 13D65)

    Architecture:    x86_64

    Report Version:  18



    Event:           Sleep Wake Failure

    Steps:           0



    Hardware model:  MacPro6,1

    Active cpus:     8




    Code: 0x4000c27006700      


    Now I know for sure nobody tried to wake the computer at just before 2 in the morning!


    The log points to wake for Network Access being the culprit here


    Jun 14 23:52:02 Johns-Mac-Pro kernel[0]: Wake reason: RTC (Alarm)

    Jun 15 01:51:55 Johns-Mac-Pro kernel[0]: RTC: Maintenance 2014/6/15 00:51:55, sleep 2014/6/14 22:52:02


    Doing more digging in the internet I found this article



    So I am now thinking that not only has power nap been causing issues with the display but wake for network access is also not really working as Apple intend it to.


    As I am a home user there really is no need for me to need wake for network access enabled anyway so I am also going to disable that. Hopefully this will mean that I have no more random phantom wake ups which I think may have been the cause of this issue all along.

  • BFOSSEN Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks for the updates, John.  I have a feeling my own TB display problems won't be completely irradicated until yosemite comes out (wishful thinking), so your feedback here will be invaluable.

  • John Neilson Level 1 (15 points)

    I spoke too soon....


    Yesterday the Thunderbolt display was flawless. The machine powered on in the morning when the Mac Pro was woken from sleep.


    This morning - totally black screen. I unplugged the thunderbolt display to reset it and plugged it all back in - nothing on the display. So I removed the thunderbolt cable from the display into the Mac Pro and plugged another thunderbolt cable from the Mac Pro into the daisychain thunberbolt socket on the display - instant results!


    Removing that cable and plugging the main cable back in - black screen.


    Also the Mac Pro had another Sleep Wake Failure - which it never had before I got the thunderbolt display.


    Today I am going to test this using the MacBook Air (so I can eliminate the Mac Pro as being potentially the cause). Lets see what happens when I return from work.

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