kernel panic - any thoughts?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by anaxjunius, Aug 8, 2006.

  1. anaxjunius macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2006
    #1
    Hello,

    I have an iBook G4 purchased about 1 year ago. The sum problems I had until a few weeks ago were a couple of frozen applications that I had to force quit. Then I tried to install Skype. 2 minutes after opening Skype the dreaded "You must restart..." message appeared, indicating a kernel panic. My first action was to restart and uninstall Skype, but the problem has persisted. The kernel panics continue without any clear pattern - the attacks have occurred variously when running Firefox, iTunes, and Word. I have tried pretty much every trick recommended in the Mac Help files- reselecting the startup disk (holding X while restarting), restarting holding the option key and selecting the startup disk, and also resetting PRAM. The disk utility could not detect any errors on the startup disk, and I also used Disk Warrior. Again no problems detected. Thinking it might be hardware, I ran Apple Hardware Test, still no problem detected. Since then I did an Archive and re-install of OS X 10.4.2, and the kernel panics continued. The last thing I tried was a full erase and re-Install of the operating system. This was working okay, but as soon as I had finished setting my preferences again - BOOM, kernel panic attack. I live in a smaller town, and the only authorized Mac repair agent will charge $85/hr for software related problems, so if you can think of anything else please post!
     
  2. jelloshotsrule macrumors G3

    jelloshotsrule

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2002
    Location:
    serendipity
    #2
    do you have more than one stick of ram? i'd try to take out the extra stick if so and test it without it.. sometimes ram can go bad randomly.

    can you boot from an external drive (via firewire target disk mode)? if you have one available, try to run off that for a while and see if the problem happens again. alternatively, back up all your stuff and do a fresh install.

    have you tried running disk utility to repair permissions, fix any disk issues, etc? maybe try a 3rd party app (i recommend diskwarrior) and do that if possible...
     
  3. anaxjunius thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2006
    #3
    Thanks for the thoughts Jello. I only have one stick of RAM. I've already tried running the disk utility and disk warrior. The last thing I tried was a Clear and Re-install of OS X. I had a kernel panic shortly after reinstalling, but interestingly have not had another since (about 4 hours of computer operating time). I still don't trust that the problem is fixed. As for booting from an external drive via firewire target disk mode, I suppose it might help decipher whether the problem is software or hardware. Still, if it is a problem with the OS, then reinstalling OS X should have fixed it, right? But if it's hardware, then Apple Hardware Test should have caught it. My data is all backed up, so I'll see if I can track down an external firewire drive and try that.

    Is it possible that Apple Hardware Test just isn't catching the problem?
     
  4. jelloshotsrule macrumors G3

    jelloshotsrule

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2002
    Location:
    serendipity
    #4
    as far as i'm concerned, that's very possible. i've never actually known that disk to catch a problem even when a hardware issue existed. i don't know enough about it to say it's crap, but i certainly wouldn't rule out hardware issues just because the test came up clear.

    a clean reinstall should've done the trick if the problem was software related. however, it's possible the drive itself is screwed up, which you could potentially test by using an external drive to boot from. ultimately it looks like you've done almost everything you can do (i assume you can't swap out the main memory stick on the ibook to try that?) to test things yourself. sadly, it may be time to suck up the repair (or upgrade!) costs... good luck!
     

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