10.5.7 Random Beachballs

Discussion in 'macOS' started by jmf1, Aug 5, 2009.

  1. jmf1 macrumors newbie

    Aug 5, 2009
    I've got lockups occurring on a 15" unibody mid-2009 MBP that last for 30 seconds at a time and then magically clear up. I get a beachball during this time. Happens in various apps (safari, mail, textedit, adium, firefox, etc).

    Activity Monitor shows DiskIO going to zero during these lockups - seems like any app that accesses (read/writes) to disk hangs during these times.

    I've looked at System Profiler, smartctl, hardware diagnostics, and disk utility and all say my drive is fine. Also ran xbench and the numbers look ok.

    Seems other people are also having problems in the official support forums:


    Has anyone else seen this? Trying to figure out if this is a general issue or a few of us have bad hardware. Apple support is giving me the usual run around.
  2. Meltdown macrumors newbie

    Mar 10, 2009
    I had the same symptoms, with disk utility, hardware diagnostics etc all reporting nothing. I tried techtool pro 5 and it said I had some bad sectors.

    Zeroing the drive worked for a while, before the problems reappeared, and I opted to switch out my drive to a 500gb 7200rpm.
  3. Amdahl macrumors 65816

    Jul 28, 2004
    Run the Console application, and look for any disk I/O errors in the logs.

    Like the above poster said, your problem does sound like a hard drive problem.
  4. Heb1228 macrumors 68020


    Feb 3, 2004
    Virginia Beach, VA
    I'm one of those reporting problems in that Apple Discussions thread. I seem to have solved the problem I was having by cloning my drive to an external, then cloning it back again to the internal.

    Even though I couldn't get disk utility or techtool to find any errors on the drive, I started suspecting it had to be a disk issue. I tried it two weeks ago and haven't had the problem re-occur yet.
  5. jmf1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 5, 2009
    Ok, well since the drive is so new, I guess I'll have Apple fix it. Anyone suggest the easiest way to backup my entire drive so that I can restore on a different disk when I get the machine back?
  6. t0mat0 macrumors 603


    Aug 29, 2006
    I've had it on 3 new mid 09 MBPs - i've associated it with the 7,200rpm drives, but it could be an issue beyond the BTO faster drive.
  7. jmf1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 5, 2009
    Yeah, I found the thread with the 7200 rpm drive issue:


    I don't have one of those but mine does make the really loud click noises with the SMS and I'm getting massive 30 second hangs identical to the ones described in that long thread on the apple's forums.

    Admins can probably move this to the MBP area instead of OSX.
  8. celticpride678

    Feb 15, 2009
    Boston, MA
    I would install 10.5.8 and see if that helps at all.
  9. jmf1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 5, 2009
    Posts on the support forum say that it doesn't :(
  10. borcanm macrumors regular

    Nov 4, 2008
    Ive been having the same problem since i upgraded from Tiger 10.4.11 to Leopard 10.5.6 Retail back in March. I think its a combination of problems involving hardware and OSX. What you can do to alleviate the problem is to reset the PRAM (only a temporary fix) by:
    1 Turn off computer
    2 Turn on computer and hold down ALT+Command+P+R when you turn on computer
    3 Computer restarts and you will hear the chime
    4 When you hear the chime take your fingers off the keys

    This help to take away the problem for a while, like a day or two if its in constant use.

    If you reset the PMU (look on apple site for steps) as well, then you'll get around 1 to 2 weeks of no freezing if you constantly use your computer.

    Its definitely an OSX 10.5.x problem because in windows xp Sp2 this has never happened no matter how long the computer is in use. I could be playing Assassins Creed or Warhammerawn of War 2, the computer gets really hot that it burns, but still runs smoothly without any freeze or lockups.

    BTW I have a MBP 1,1
    2G ram
    ATI 1600x
  11. Heb1228 macrumors 68020


    Feb 3, 2004
    Virginia Beach, VA
    I have the stock 5400 RPM drive, but would recommend others try the solution that seemed to work for me and report back results.

    Resetting PRAM only seems to work temporarily because it reboots the machine. Mine never cropped up until after a few days of uptime.

    I'm still pretty convinced it was (at least in my case) a case of disk error(s) that were not picked up by disk utility. Cloning the drive and then re-cloning back to the internal seems to have taken care of this really annoying issue.

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