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View Full Version : G5 1.6 randomly freezing...not due to 3rd party RAM


oingoboingo
Oct 1, 2003, 09:26 PM
Hi,

I've posted before on this issue, but at the time I thought that the random freezes with my new G5 1.6GHz system were due to some 3rd party RAM (tried Apacer and Kingmax) that I had installed. I've since removed the RAM, but my freezing/lockup problems have continued.

Basically, the symptoms are fairly simple: just navigating around the desktop, using Safari, or reading e-mail with Mail is enough to occasionally lock the entire system up. Nothing is written into the /var/log/system.log or to the console which would indicate something going wrong. I have run the Apple Hardware Test, in both quick and extended modes, but no problem is reported.

I also performed a 'erase and install' new installation of Mac OS X 10.2.7 from the provided DVD. The system actually locked up *during the installation*!!! At this stage I called Apple Australia, and started speaking to their support people. Their first suggestion was to re-install again, but this time deleting the original partition and re-partitioning. I did this, but once again, the installer locked up at the 'Registering your Details with Apple' stage (those little animated blobs just froze too...very sad. The G5's fans also kicked into high gear, indicating that the OS had lost control of the hardware).

Another call to Apple, and this time the suggestion was to boot into single user mode and perform an fsck (it came up clean), and then to reset the CUDA switch on the motherboard. That was about an hour ago, and since then, i've been running iTunes, surfing the web with Safari, and reading email with Mail with no problems...all the things that made the system lock up before. I've even given UT2003 a quick run, and it all seems fine.

Maybe the CUDA reset was what fixed it. Maybe it's just so random that 5 minutes after I post this message it'll lock up again? I don't know...I'm pretty concerned that my 6-day old G5 system is so unstable. This is the sort of behaviour I would expect from a bottom-tier PC clone with dodgy RAM.

Has anyone out there had similar experiences with their system locking or freezing up, even *without* adding in 3rd party RAM or PCI cards? This thing is as stock as the day it arrived. The config is: 1.6GHz G5, 256MB RAM (2 x 128MB), 80GB HDD, Combo drive, Radeon 9600 Pro, no modem, no Airport, no Bluetooth, stock Apple mouse and stock Apple keyboard, connected up to a 17" VGA screen via the supplied Apple DVI->VGA adapter.

Mat.

oingoboingo
Oct 1, 2003, 10:44 PM
OK, it's crashed again twice, once while I was on the phone to an Apple rep. They've conceded that it can only be a hardware fault, and have recommended I take it into one of their local service centres in Sydney.

So does Apple even bother to do burn-in testing? This system has been acting flakey since day 1. Anyone else out there with similar problems?

alieu
Nov 3, 2003, 02:26 PM
I've been trying to find out if anyone out there have similar problem. speaking of frustration, i could not agree with you more. i could not get my G5 to boot up properly since i got it in october. I have very similar configuration as you. G5 1.8 ghz, 1 G of Ram (500 mb from Crucial.com), ATI 9600 Pro and a 20" Cinama display.

The problem with me is i could not get the computer to boot on the regular basis. Sometime it just hug there (freeze) after the apple theme sound. And when it booted (once every 5 times), it cannot wake up after i put it to sleep.

Apple also suggested i brought my computer to one of my local service centre to have a look. The sales guy pull it out and plug it into one of the 20" cinema display and could not get it booted up also. I lefted it there for a week and half. Got a call last week and the tech told me all tests passed and it booted fine. I got into a big argument with him coz i know it isn't true. Perhaps he lucked out or simply didn't do a complete and thorough job of testing.

Anyway, i want to hear what is your remedy. Apple service rep suggested they will swap the video card for a new one but i want to hear what they told you. My email is andrew@tugboatmedia.com

grantjohnson
Dec 8, 2003, 12:14 PM
OK, I have a new MAC G5 with 3 GB RAM, two 256 GB hard drives, the big 22" HD display, blue tooth wireless, the high end video card, etc., etc., I got the best of the best, but occasionally it does this freeze up where the screen is black and the computer fans are all speeding up and up and up until they are all blowing at full speed, making tons of noise and using amps.

Only a hard reboot will do (hold the on switch 6 seconds).

Then I turn it on again and all works fine.

I was playing ITUNES before this happened, and let it go through the long list of songs. Possibly, when it reaches the end of the list, and after a little while, it goes into this glitch.

I could not get the computer to malfunction or freeze up in any other application, and I use all programs, including Final Cut, DVD Studio, Apple Office, Safari, and a whole lot more. Overall, I am very satisfied wirh the system, but I would like to know what causes it to go into the FAN FREEZE UP mode after it sits for a while doing nothing (about an hour or two of sitting doing nothing, and after using ITUNES). I have not run any tests on the machine. I was just searching the web for some quick answers and got this page.

Any suggestions would be welcome.

Grant

Stevp1
Dec 27, 2003, 04:52 PM
I have a 17" PB that I've only had for about 3 weeks doing the same thing. I haven't called applecare yet, but I wonder if any of those fixes would help me. the freezing is totally random, sometimes during logon, sometimes right after, sometimes during application use. i don't think i can do the Motherboard thing, but what other steps has anybody taken? this occured for me both in 10.3.1 and 3.2. I do have Kingstgon ram in, but that's supposed to be the good stuff, I thought.

Dont Hurt Me
Dec 27, 2003, 05:08 PM
Originally posted by oingoboingo
OK, it's crashed again twice, once while I was on the phone to an Apple rep. They've conceded that it can only be a hardware fault, and have recommended I take it into one of their local service centres in Sydney.

So does Apple even bother to do burn-in testing? This system has been acting flakey since day 1. Anyone else out there with similar problems? xlr8yourmac had a article where they thought the sensor that reads hard drive temp is located too far away from the hard drive and is down wind from the fan so the fan is keeping the sensor cool therefore not reading the correct temp of the drive to keep it cool. just thought i would mention this.

grantjohnson
Dec 27, 2003, 05:21 PM
OK, I don't have any problems anymore. I figured out that it is the environmentalists who caused the problem.

As soon as I changed my power saver settings, and never did let the system go into standby or shut off the hard disks anymore, or turn off the monitor (that was the main one), everything works fine.

My recommendation. If you are worried about power savings, shut the computer off, and don't let it do it automatically for you, it will freeze and cause the system to become unstable, and all 9 of the fans will start whirring up while you are gone, sucking energy for nothing.

iJon
Dec 27, 2003, 05:51 PM
i have had these same problems. lock ups about 5 times a day and it was really pissing me off. this was on my 1.6 g5. but i also have powerbook so i just kind of stopped using my g5. but i started using it again and decided to just wipe it clean since i dont do much on it anyways and there wansnt anything on it. it crashed again. but for the past 2 days it has not crashed and i dont know why. it was acting good and just for the hell of it i turned processing power to low since all i do is pretty much listen to music and browse the web on this . but im going to leave everything alone for now and see if still crashes, then ill take it in and fix it.

iJon

grantjohnson
Dec 27, 2003, 08:18 PM
It may be different for everybody, but my experience with my new G5 Mac is that the sleep mode or monitor shut off mode is the culprit that freezes the computer.

As a side note, I have about 6 Windows machines, and many of these TOO, malfunction on the sleep modes, or the hibernation, and depending on what was running, will not recover without a hard reboot. That's hard on a machine.

I have them all set to stay on and not do the "sleep" mode because I have found that this consistently does not work well, and freezes up the computers if you were running something significant, like iTunes, Windows Media Player, or some CAD program, etc. when the computer "went to sleep." They don't wake up. They go into a deep freeze.

iJon
Dec 27, 2003, 08:19 PM
Originally posted by grantjohnson
It may be different for everybody, but my experience with my new G5 Mac is that the sleep mode or monitor shut off mode is the culprit that freezes the computer.

As a side note, I have about 6 Windows machines, and many of these TOO, malfunction on the sleep modes, or the hibernation, and depending on what was running, will not recover without a hard reboot. That's hard on a machine.

I have them all set to stay on and not do the "sleep" mode because I have found that this consistently does not work well, and freezes up the computers if you were running something significant, like iTunes, Windows Media Player, or some CAD program, etc. when the computer "went to sleep." They don't wake up.
now that i think of it, i havent been putting this machine to sleep, very interesting point you have made, i think il going to put it to sleep just to find out.

iJon

jimsowden
Dec 27, 2003, 10:13 PM
I have the exact same configutation as you (1.6, 156, no modem, 17 VGA monitor) and I posted a forum in macrumors and on apple Discussions. I have a feeling it is some malfuntion in the logic board. First of all this is a 1.6 G% problem only. My first instict was either software or ram. Replaced the ram (I work at an apple store) and zeroed out the drive. Same old. Took it into work 2 days straight wouldn't do it. Went home and got one of those battery backups because one of the guys at work thought it might be a power current issue. No, waste of money. Then I took a mouse and keyboard from work (old black kind) and tried that on another preminission of a tech. Nothing. So the I tried resetting the PRAM (BOOT CTRL OPT P R) and it hasn't done it since. Mind you this was a few hours ago so it may just be a coinsidence. At any rate this is the most annoying problem I have ever seen and I am selling my G5 because it works well for everyone but me. Interested? jimsowden@comcast.net. Hope this helps.

oingoboingo
Dec 29, 2003, 07:46 PM
I thought this thread had died, but it looks like people are still posting to it, so here's the followup. After spending some time on the phone with Apple Australia, they finally admitted that my G5 was probably a Dead On Arrival (DOA), and I should take it back to the nearest dealer. I did that, and about 3 weeks later, a replacement 1.6GHz G5 was delivered to me. It worked perfectly out of the box, even after I added an extra 1GB of Crucial DDR SDRAM to the stock 256MB (which this time was also Crucial...previously Apple had used Hynix RAM).

Unfortunately, another problem has since developed, which is the dreaded 'Black Screen of Death' (BSOD). This problem, which seems to be widely reported on Apple's own discussion forum, relates to the video card (a Radeon 9600 Pro in this case) not sending any signal to the monitor upon cold booting or waking from sleep (the G5 itself boots fine, there's just no video signal until the 2nd, 3rd or sometimes 10th reboot). I called AppleCare again in early December to arrange for service, but in the past few weeks the problem seems to have fixed itself. I don't know if it has got anything to do with the various OS X and firmware upgrades which have been recently released, the warmer weather here in Sydney, or just plain old good luck. Anyway, I'll see how it goes...I've got another 8 months or so of warranty to get the problem fixed.

Apart from the occasionally very frustrating BSOD problem (everyone *loves* having to power-cycle their G5 2 or 3 times to get a video signal in the morning!), I haven't had another lockup or crash. I'd say the original problem was with the motherboard. To anyone still suffering from random lockups and crashes, persist with AppleCare until they replace or repair your G5. Don't accept any BS about 'running too many apps at once' or anything like that...it's a hardware problem, your G5 shouldn't crash at all, and Apple should fix their manufacturing faults.

Hope this helps. BTW, I've since gotten a 1GHz 12" PowerBook to replace my old PIII Dell notebook, and in contrast to the G5, I've not had a single problem with it since I got it a few months ago (which comes as a relief).

crashreport
Jan 7, 2004, 09:48 AM
I'm currently having the same issues. (G51.6 / OSX10.2.3)

2 out of 3 we ordered work perfectly.

I was originally having Kernel Panics every 15 minutes and thought it was 3rd party RAM. After replacing all the RAM with only factory RAM, the Kernel Panics went away, but now the mysterious freezes have taken over.

I've tried everything that I can now (Ran TTP4, Apple System Test, replaced external peripherals, tried reseating everything) and the only thing left for me to do is send it back DOA.

I also have no crash logs whatsoever. How does this happen? I've crashed at least 10 times in the past two days and there's no log?

ps: This year, the videologic board on my Ti/400 died, then the CDR died, then the logicboard on my iBook(dualusb) died, then the logicboard on my TiBook/800 died...and now a brand new G5 bites it.

How's that for odds?

-crashreport

grantjohnson
Jan 7, 2004, 10:05 AM
I use Final Cut Express a lot, and was getting error messages when BUILDING the video movie. It was so frustrating.

After much search on the Internet and finding nothing, it dawned on me that NORTON antivirus was causing the problem, because it was trying to scan in REAL TIME each of the video scratch files, and so it couldn't keep up, and the program would bomb out of the BUILD process and never compile the movie.

Finally I tried disabling the NORTON software when I do FINAL CUT and it works flawlessly. All these things we need to think of!!