HELP! Computer completely locking up

Discussion in 'macOS' started by Earendil, Dec 4, 2006.

  1. Earendil macrumors 68000

    Earendil

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2003
    Location:
    Washington
    #1
    First off, I'm a semi advanced user. So as me whatever questions you want.

    I'm having to type this from a different computer, because my computer (stats in sig) is locking up for 5-30 seconds at a time. System profiler shows all my RAM there, as well as other major devices being identified (VRAM, HD).
    Activity Monitor shows nothing odd. Nothing is sucking up CPU cycles, and nothing is eating the RAM (750 free).

    However my computer, whenever you try and do something, goes through a UI lock. The mouse moves fine, but everything seems to go on pause. And I mean literally pauses. I have a little menu bar item that shows port traffic updated every second. That update completely locks up whenever I do anything until the computer unlocks and does the task. Also while watching Activity monitor things do not update while it is locked.

    Is my CPU hitting the crapper? :(

    Please help, and give any suggestions, no matter how remote or improbable. My poor baby is completely useless right now.

    ~Tyler
     
  2. bartelby macrumors Core

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2004
    #2
    My PowerBook did that as it's HD was dying. Is your drive making any nasty noises?
     
  3. Earendil thread starter macrumors 68000

    Earendil

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2003
    Location:
    Washington
    #3
    No, it's making no noises :(

    I just came back to add that this morning when I woke it up it was "slow" to get going, so I restarted it and ran DISK utility off the CD drive disk I had my Tiger install CD in there from prior use.

    Well my only result was this:
    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=257876

    So I restarted and now this is happening...

    As I think about it, running off the CD showed none of these problems...

    Frick... a new HD... I wanted to upgrade, but I wanted to do it when I had the money for it :(

    Any way to confirm it's the HD?
     
  4. bartelby macrumors Core

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2004
    #4
    I tried to run disk repair from the CD. The drive fail to be repaired, that was a bit of a give away.
     
  5. hayduke macrumors 65816

    hayduke

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2005
    Location:
    is a state of mind.
    #5
    Back-up ASAP. Start burning CDs or DVDs. Something sounds like it's going to blow. You'll hate yourself for a bit if you don't back-up. Something similar just happened to me and fortunately I had a recent back up.
     
  6. Earendil thread starter macrumors 68000

    Earendil

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2003
    Location:
    Washington
    #6
    well %^&*.

    So I'm kinda one of those half hearted back up guys. I have an external that I use CCC to backup my laptop HD on. However I noticed that it doesn't seem to actually make a bootable backup. This is where the half hearted comes in, I never bothered to figure out why...
    So how would you guys go about backing stuff up? Using CCC would be great, because it should only copy over the new files, keeping my HD from working too hard. Otherwise I'll have to transfer 70gb.
    I've read there were some problems with CCC and Tiger?

    Thank you so much guys!
    ~Tyler
     
  7. bartelby macrumors Core

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2004
    #7
    Yeah, I didn't back up!
    My next purchase will be a f**king massive external hard drive!

    I just hope I can recover some stuff from the old drive.:(
     
  8. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    Location:
    Palookaville
    #8
    Please don't assume that you need a new hard drive. Have you checked the disk with Disk Utility or fsck in Single User Mode, as suggested? What were the results?
     
  9. Earendil thread starter macrumors 68000

    Earendil

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2003
    Location:
    Washington
    #9
    I'm not assuming anything quite yet.

    Aside from running disk utility off my Tiger install CD (as noted), I have done nothing else to scan the HD. As I do not see anyone suggesting to use fsck (and what exactly is single user mode? something other than what it sounds?), could you advise on how to go about this?

    fsck turns up nothing at version tracker, and my memory recalls that it might be a unix command line. The command console and I have not been formally introduced in any real sense...

    I'll still try and get into my computer and make a backup using target disk mode and I guess CCC. It should be done anyway... And there are files on it I need to be working on while I trouble shoot the poor baby.

    Thanks guys,
    ~Tyler
     
  10. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    Location:
    Palookaville
    #10
    I see where you ran Disk Utility, but not where you reported the results. Does it report the drive to be okay? Running fsck in Single User Mode is essentially the same test, but can be done without the install DVD or CD. If you've done the one the other probably isn't necessary, but here's how:

    Reboot, hold down the "s" key until you see a black screen with scrolling white text. When the the text stops scrolling, at the prompt type:

    fsck -fy [including the space, then return]

    If any repairs are reported, run fsck again until they are no longer reported. Then, at the prompt type:

    reboot [return]
     
  11. Angrist macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2005
    Location:
    MI or NJ
    #11
    Run fsck. It might fix the problem.
    B-tree issues can be caused by a crash or hard shutdown that messes up the filesystem.

    To run fsck (from memory, google for more):
    Reboot and hold cmd-s
    - this should boot into a black and white terminal.
    type "/sbin/fsck -fy" and hit enter
    - there should be directions for this in the text output on the terminal.
    after fsck is done, type "reboot" to reboot.


    If that doesn't work ... try to find a copy of Techtools or Diskwarrior and run that.
     
  12. Earendil thread starter macrumors 68000

    Earendil

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2003
    Location:
    Washington
    #12
    I'll attempt to use fsck when I get home today.

    The reason you probably didn't spot the results is because they were linked to. However for convenience I'll c/p them here.

    Checking HFS plus volume
    Checking Extents overflow file
    Checking Catalog file
    Keys out of order

    Rebuilding Catalog B-Tree
    The volume Macintosh HD could not be repaired

    Error: Underlying task failed on exit

    If when pulling data off the HD tonight the thing goes down the drain, I'll consider that a failure of the HD :cool:
     
  13. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    Location:
    Palookaville
    #13
    Okay, that helps. Sorry I missed this the first time. If Disk Utility can't repair the damage, then you should advance to the next step, which is a commercial disk repair application, such as Disk Warrior. It's not cheap, but also not as expensive (or disruptive) as replacing the drive. Normally, this application is run from a bootable CD, which has to be ordered from Alsoft and takes way too long to arrive by mail. But if you've got another Mac which can be used as a Target Disk Mode host, then I think your best bet is the downloadable version of Disk Warrior, which can be run on the host Mac.
     
  14. Earendil thread starter macrumors 68000

    Earendil

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2003
    Location:
    Washington
    #14
    Update

    So here is the latest.

    Disk Warrior wouldn't touch the disk. It always hung on the same step, of which I forget the name, I think it was step 5, "finding directory" or "building directory". Actually I think it said both in two different parts of the screen... anyway.

    I used psync and another mac + external firewire drive to copy everything off the drive. At least I think I got everything. My idea was to toss all my data onto an external firewire drive and use that as my boot drive until I solved the internal mess.

    However the copy did not work as a boot drive. I don't know if it's a problem with psync and my setup, or if data was being corrupted as I copied it off the failing HD. In any case it was recognized as a boot disk, and would boot all the way to the APple and spinning wheel before it would just hang.

    Whipped out the Tiger CD and installed that onto the external drive overlapping the 10.4.8 version I had. I used the "archive and install", or whichever one takes the old system and sets it aside, but doesn't delete it.

    So now I'm running 10.4.0 and a brand new user. What should my next step be? I can trouble shoot the internal all day as long as I can get my user and profiles all back up and running off the external. Should I update the 4.0 version to 4.8, and then drag as many folders/files from the old system back as possible? Will that work? How about just dumping my old user folder into the new users folder? Will that work?

    And this point I have no way of backing up my data, as it is all runnong off the backup :eek: so I'm a little bit cautious about having the system trash/corrupt anything by switching OSX versions and data around.

    Advice is very, VERY welcome.
    ~Tyler
     
  15. gost8go macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2004
    #15
    my powerbook g4 is also behaving much like yours. The trouble seemed to start after the last sytem security update.
     
  16. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    Location:
    Palookaville
    #16
    You may not have waited long enough. Disk Warrior can take a long time to do its job -- several hours, even. How long did you allow it to run? I presume you were running it on a host Mac with the PowerBook in Target Disk Mode.
     
  17. Earendil thread starter macrumors 68000

    Earendil

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2003
    Location:
    Washington
    #17
    I waited about two hours. But after the first few minutes the scrolling "work is being done" bar froze and didn't move. Perhaps I didn't wait long enough, but I can feel more comfortable letting it sit for hours now that I *think* I have all my data off. The state of the drive had deteriorated even more now.

    And yes, it was run from a host Mac in target disk mode. The host was having a very hard time dealing with the drive though. Me thinks OSX doesn't know how to handle busted drives :rolleyes:
     
  18. Earendil thread starter macrumors 68000

    Earendil

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2003
    Location:
    Washington
    #18
    I did in fact install that update 24-48 hours before my problem started. However I used my computer for many hours without issue, and then it started having issues...

    I'll spend a lot more time on the drive once I get my external running with 10.4.8 AND running my user.

    Anyone have any advice on that? Can I just drop my old user folder in place of the new one?
     
  19. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    Location:
    Palookaville
    #19
    Froze or didn't move? Two different things. If you can, try letting it run overnight (seriously).

    Good that you got your data off the drive, though. The fact that the drive mounted remotely but can't be helped by Disk Utility suggests that the problem in the end might well be mechanical. In my experience a drive which can't be mounted remotely might be afflicted with logical issues (corrupted directory), which Disk Warrior can often fix.

    BTW, what OS can handle busted drives?
     
  20. Earendil thread starter macrumors 68000

    Earendil

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2003
    Location:
    Washington
    #20
    Will do!
    when referencing the blue status bar, they are the same thing to me The bar ceased to make any movement or sign of work. I do not mean that the app its self froze, though it was very unresponsive, and required force quitting. So in essence it was.

    That is what logic told me as well. The internal used to boot the OS and the computer function with freezes. Then it would boot to the desktop but not load any start up items for 10's of minutes. Now it doesn't make it to the log in screen. If it's simply a software corruption problem, it's the fastest deterioration I've ever seen.

    I want to try and live with my Data for a few days before I deem it all there. I'm in the process of updating the external from 10.4.0 to 10.4.8 as I write this. I'm hoping when it's done I can get everything looking pretty close to what it looked like before the drive started acting up. In this way I can test my data and make sure everything is okay. At that point I can do whatever I like with the internal, as I can't possibly make it any more usless :(

    None, but if there is one it should be OSX :)
    I mean more in the sense of proper timeouts. I'm not sure what the OS is trying to accomplish by hanging for 10 minutes vs 60 seconds.
     

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