2008 Mac Pro + 8800gt+ dual displays = freezing on occasion?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by SolrFlare, Apr 2, 2008.

  1. SolrFlare macrumors regular

    Feb 5, 2007
    Has anyone else run into this issue in OS X? I've had no problems with my Mac Pro or graphical issues before but since I got my Dell 2408 ultrasharp and started using dual monitors, I run into occasional problems.


    - Whenever flipping through things in Coverflow(especially in itunes) my mac pro will hard lock forcing a physical restart(hold the power button down).

    - If I let the itunes album art screensaver run for a long while my system can lock up as well.

    My setup is as follows:

    early 2008 Mac Pro
    8800gt video card
    Quad core 2.8
    4gb of ram


    24inch Dell 2008 model ultrasharp(1900x1200 rez)
    Older 20 inch gateway in vertical mode(1050x1680 rez)

    Running them in dual mode spanning between them.

    I've also verified/repaired permissions and for reference I'm running 10.5.2 with all updates applied.
  2. Sesshi macrumors G3


    Jun 3, 2006
    One Nation Under Gordon
    Perhaps try reseating the card. Take it out completely and reinstall it.
  3. SolrFlare thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 5, 2007
    Nope, tried that as well. What's interesting is the monitor combination determines the nature of the freeze/performance.

    single monitor, either monitor: no problem, everything is smooth.

    Dual monitors, both in normal position: animations like coverflow/dock are laggy at times but no crash.

    Dual monitors, Dell at 1900x1200, Gateway vertical at 1050x1680: Freeze after a few flips of coverflow.

    I can re-produce it every single time. I'm thinking it may be an OS X 8800gt driver issue, but also hoping someone else might know of a fix here.
  4. ZachPruckowski macrumors member

    Aug 15, 2007
    Are you noticing any tearing during game play (Assuming you play games) or any stray pixels when using HQ images in Preview? It's possible your video card fan isn't scaling up fast enough. If you have a Windows install, you could boot into Windows, install an overclocking tool, and rather than overclock, pump the fans up a bit.

    You could also open the computer up and check for dust (either on the fans or in the computer). I had a situation where my x1900's fan wasn't working (causing a similar problem), so I removed the card, unscrewed the fan cover, and unstuck the fan (with a blast of compressed air). Of course, I didn't have an Applecare to void, so it was that or pay for a new card.
  5. SolrFlare thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 5, 2007
    No image tearing either. I thought it might be overheat related too due to the resolutions being pumped out. No go there =/ It's simply working one minute, then OS locks up and becomes non-responsive save for being able to move the mouse around the next minute.

    It's very much like the ATI freezing problem I've read about only it only happens in this particular configuration, and, of course, I'm using an 8800gt here instead of the ATI card.
  6. student_trap macrumors 68000


    Mar 14, 2005
    'Ol Smokey, UK
    sorry I cant offer any advice, but thought it might be helpful to let you know that im running my mac pro + 8800 with a 23" ACD and samsung 932mw and have had none of your problems, if i were you id call applecare:(
  7. etropicarbon macrumors newbie

    May 11, 2008
    Apple - Support - Disucssions - Topic : Itunes/Coverflow causes System Freeze.


    yeah. Its not just your system...Perhaps the dual monitor is a factor....I have a 42 Sony Bravia hooked up to my 2ndG MBP...

    The above thread suggests it occurs when flipping thru coverflow with a mouse...

    (see post by Seddik) suggests that its an issue with the NVIDIA driver, but others point to other firmware updates (e.g. keyboard) and openGL in general...

    the real question is, do you need applecare to get a fix?
  8. Mackilroy macrumors 68040


    Jun 29, 2006
    Tomorrow when I get my 8800 GT I'll put my other monitor into portrait mode and see if I can reproduce your issue.
  9. trainguy77 macrumors 68040

    Nov 13, 2003
    I sometimes get the same problem. Hardware monitor used to trigger it. However they changed how often it polls the drivers so it has a much smaller chance of triggering the problem.

    http://www.bresink.com/osx/216202/history.html sixth bullet in. However that was for the x1900s. Maybe the same problems exists in the 8800gt drivers. I brought this bug to the developers attention. Whenever i have it happen i can still SSH into the machine. You should see if you can.
  10. Mackilroy macrumors 68040


    Jun 29, 2006
    Checking back in... the computer froze with the second monitor in portrait mode while using Coverflow, no problems with iTunes Artwork screensaver though.

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