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Old Jan 9, 2011, 11:58 AM   #1
richard371
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How many Kernel panics is to much?

I have had the Macbook air 11.6 for 5 weeks now and it has been rock solid except for a couple of kernel panics. Once when I first got it I got a kernel panic in Safari. I only use google browser now. I got a kernel panic 2 days ago. I went to open the lid and it did not come on. I found out there was a kernel panic.

Im afraid if I take it to the genius bar they will have me reinstall the OS and add 1 app back at a time to see what is causing it but since they are so infrequent this is obviously not convienet. Also I have had my imac 24 for 3 years and have tons more junk on it and have never gotten 1 panic.

Thoughts? SHould I just live with it if they only happen once a month or so?
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Old Jan 9, 2011, 12:01 PM   #2
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Kernal panics (in my experience) don't come from normal apps, especially not standard ones like Safari, Chrome, Firefox etc. They'd probably run a hardware test to check to see if there's any problems there. They'd ask you before reinstalling/removing any software. If you can, backup everything, then go into the store if the kernal panics keep persisting.
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Old Jan 9, 2011, 12:05 PM   #3
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I ran the full hardware test a few times and no problem.
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Old Jan 9, 2011, 12:17 PM   #4
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I ran the full hardware test a few times and no problem.
I just picked up an 11.6 in. Macbook Air and I've experienced a couple kernel panics as well. I too, ran a full hardware test and everything came up fine. I'm guessing it's just software related. Probably fixed with a software update soon. It's not really a problem for me because I only really experienced issues when first setting up my machine and transferring data. However, I have noticed that when I'm using programs for a long period of time and use Command+Q to exit, at times there can be a delay. But, if I open multiple programs at once and close them a few seconds after opening them, they close immediately with no hesitation.

Have you experienced anything similar on your machine?

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Old Jan 9, 2011, 12:25 PM   #5
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Well, I've had my MBP for 18 months and in that time I can count the number of kernel panics on two hands, if that's any indication.
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Old Jan 9, 2011, 12:41 PM   #6
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I got my MBP i5 just as they released them, haven't had any panics yet.
Did you do the extended hardware test or just the normal one?
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Old Jan 9, 2011, 12:54 PM   #7
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Old Jan 9, 2011, 01:14 PM   #8
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IMO 2 is too many. Machine is under warranty. Unlike Microsoft that lists the error with a BSOD apple chooses not to so you're left guessing. So if I got more then 1 kernel panic I'd be their problem to deal with.
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Old Jan 9, 2011, 02:03 PM   #9
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Almost two months in with my 11.6" 1.6Ghz, 4GB, 128GB SSD Air. Zero panics, and I've been pushing it pretty hard: running many browser tabs, Parallels VM image of Windows XP, Office 2011, Xcode, iPhone simulator, etc... usually all at the same time.
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Old Jan 9, 2011, 02:16 PM   #10
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IMO, the two most likely causes are a hardware fault (such as unseated/faulty RAM), or overheating.

I was getting a kernel panic almost every time I watched a video on Youtube, tried replacing the RAM and it had no effect. Bought a laptop cooling pad and I haven't had one since. (It's a 4 year laptop which has had heavy use, so it's probably not going to last much longer anyhow).
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Old Jan 9, 2011, 02:50 PM   #11
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In 2 1/2 years of daily OSX usage, I've seen 1 kernel panic... due to something with a bad install of Parallels. The only other time I've seen kernel panics is on hackintoshes (too numerous but that's all due to incompatible hardware and such).

Its very likely you have hardware issues if you're seeing multiple kernel panics from something like a browser. Sure I've managed to crash Firefox on a number of occasions, but none resulted in kernel panics.
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Old Jan 9, 2011, 02:56 PM   #12
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I get a kernal panic every time i use geektool
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Old Jan 9, 2011, 03:01 PM   #13
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I've had zero kernel panics the entire time I've owned the 11" MBA. In my experience with Macs laptops, I've had less than 1 kernel panic a year, and it was hardware related (funny Expresscard issue). So, if you're getting a couple a month, I would say that's something to worry about and fix...
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Old Jan 9, 2011, 03:02 PM   #14
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IMO 2 is too many. Machine is under warranty. Unlike Microsoft that lists the error with a BSOD apple chooses not to so you're left guessing. So if I got more then 1 kernel panic I'd be their problem to deal with.
Actually Mac OS X has a log for kernel panics that you can easily check.
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Old Jan 9, 2011, 03:16 PM   #15
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Shouldn't have any kernel panics. Typically indicates a hardware issue, or driver issue. Unless you've installed some additional hardware, or are in the processing of plugging/unplugging USB devices... assuming you have a normal install of Snow Leopard 10.6.6, you should not see a kernel panic. I'd take it to the Apple store.
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Old Jan 9, 2011, 04:27 PM   #16
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I was getting one or two kernel panics a week after I migrated my Rev B MacBook Air to my new Rev D. After a while, and a Genius Bar trip, I concluded that it was VMWare Fusion that was causing them (or perhaps having both Fusion and Parallels installed). I uninstalled Fusion about 3 weeks ago and haven't had a kernel panic since, though I still have had some Safari crashes.
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Old Jan 9, 2011, 10:10 PM   #17
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Actually Mac OS X has a log for kernel panics that you can easily check.
+1.

Kernel panics should not be occurring under normal circumstances. Look at the Console log to try to identify the offending hardware, kext or application. If this is beyond you, take it to a Genius and ask them to check.
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Old Jan 9, 2011, 10:48 PM   #18
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You're still under Apple Care at 5 weeks (47 weeks to go!). Two KPs are two too many. Call Apple Care and start a file. Next time it panics, call them again. Tell them it's inconvenient for you to get to the store. At some point you will have enough incidents on file that you can go to the store and they will either figure out what is wrong, and fix it.... or give you a new MBA.

Or Apple Care will immediately offer a new MBA on your first call, and you can head to store then. Make a back up early and keep it up to date.

All of this is just imho, of course..... but do the phone thing first. Save yourself some driving/waiting in line time.
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Old Jan 9, 2011, 11:34 PM   #19
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Have you run the software update? I seem to remember my wife's 11" MBAir getting a firmware update. She hasn't experienced any kernal panics that I know of.
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Old Jan 10, 2011, 01:53 AM   #20
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Have you run the software update? I seem to remember my wife's 11" MBAir getting a firmware update. She hasn't experienced any kernal panics that I know of.
The firmware fixed some things. But then I just had a kernel panic on my MBA 13 just the other day. Other than that, the machine is solid.
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Old Jan 10, 2011, 03:11 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by richard371 View Post
I have had the Macbook air 11.6 for 5 weeks now and it has been rock solid except for a couple of kernel panics. Once when I first got it I got a kernel panic in Safari. I only use google browser now. I got a kernel panic 2 days ago. I went to open the lid and it did not come on. I found out there was a kernel panic.

Im afraid if I take it to the genius bar they will have me reinstall the OS and add 1 app back at a time to see what is causing it but since they are so infrequent this is obviously not convienet. Also I have had my imac 24 for 3 years and have tons more junk on it and have never gotten 1 panic.

Thoughts? SHould I just live with it if they only happen once a month or so?
One is too many
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Old Jan 10, 2011, 10:37 AM   #22
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You're still under Apple Care at 5 weeks (47 weeks to go!). Two KPs are two too many. Call Apple Care and start a file. Next time it panics, call them again. Tell them it's inconvenient for you to get to the store. At some point you will have enough incidents on file that you can go to the store and they will either figure out what is wrong, and fix it.... or give you a new MBA.
The issue here is that kernel panics can be either hardware or software related, particularly when using 3rd party kernel extensions (kext). Just swapping hardware is no guarantee that the problem will disappear. Better to properly diagnose the problem - looking at the Console and seeing the cause of the crash. Apple support (phone, Genius bar) should be able to help you.
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Old Jan 10, 2011, 01:35 PM   #23
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I had a couple of kernel panics on my old MBP, which I identified as having been caused by Chrome. A little research revealed that others had reported the same problem with Chrome. Thus, when I got my MBA, I wondered whether it would peacefully coexist with Chrome. Fortunately, it could and did. In the two and a half months I have had my MBA, I have not had a single kernel panic, although I leave Chrome up and running on it 24/7.
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Old Jan 10, 2011, 02:16 PM   #24
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Thanks for the advice. I figure third time is a charm. If I get 1 more shes going to the genius bar. I just hope they dont ask me to re install the OS or do some sort of process and elimination. I don't have time for that hopefully they will swap it out.
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