2009 Mac Pro constant freezing

beccas

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 5, 2016
82
5
Hi,

Can anyone here offer my a guess as to the cause of my recent computer issues. I have a 2009 Mac Pro on 10.10.5 I recently like (2 weeks ago) got a used reference GTX 980 (not flashed) to drive my new displays (both 4k resolution). This is an upgrade from the GT 120. I don't know if this is a graphics issue but I just want to state the changes I recently made.

As of late, my computer is having problems. Often, after some use or little, one screen (connected by DP cable) will turn green or black and the other (connected by HDMI) will stay on but freeze but I can still control the mouse cursor which turns to a beach ball where I can do anything. Shortly, this second screen will freeze and I'll have to restart the computer. I could be doing nothing but browsing the web using chrome with two tabs open and it happens.

Any guess as to why? Any tools that I can use to diagnose the problem? I am using console to help but I admit that I am not very experienced with this. I will happily provide more info to anyone willing to assist. Thank you for your time. It is greatly appreciated.
 
Last edited:

beccas

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 5, 2016
82
5
I have done that and I haven't had any crashes/freezes but the issue is sporadic. Hard to outline completely if that would be the issue.

The freeze happened today again (with 980) and looking at console before the freeze and reboot, I get

kernel[0]: NVDA(DMA): Channel timeout!
kernel[0]: NVDA: Channel Info: [3, 0xa, 0x4, 0x663c1]
kernel[0]: NVDA: Version Info: [com.nvidia.web.GeForceWeb, 10.0.5, 0x5e5f4c655b, 21116647, 346.02.03f11, 1]
DumpGPURestart[938]: Saved gpuRestart report for kernel to /Library/Logs/DiagnosticReports/Kernel_2017-03-19-105250_Mac-Pro.gpuRestart
kernel[0]: NVDA(base): Channel timeout!

Would something like this cause the issue I am getting?

Thanks for your time and input.
 

h9826790

macrumors G5
Apr 3, 2014
12,800
5,622
Hong Kong
Are you locked to 10.10.5 because some software compatibility issue? If not, you better upgrade to Sierra. That's the best way to update the Nvidia web driver.
 

beccas

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 5, 2016
82
5
What do you mean? Does Sierra offer native Nvidia support?

I prefer to remain on 10.10.5 though.
 

beccas

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 5, 2016
82
5
No, but AFAIK Nvidia only improve the web driver for newer OS / release. Your 10.10.5 driver is seriously outdated.
Oh, I did not know that. I will keep this in mind.

Last night, I verified disk in Disk Utility and found and error. Repaired disk afterwards in recovery mode. Everything seemed fine. Now a couple minutes ago, it froze on me again. Nothing appears strange in console. This is really frustrating. Maybe the GPU is faulty? I did a test with Unigine Heaven yesterday but it didn't crash.

I would like to add that even during the freezes, the audio still continues (audio connected through line out in the back of system).
 
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eminorb5

macrumors newbie
Apr 13, 2017
10
1
Bangkok, Thailand
I still using EVGA GTX980 (non flashed) with my 5,1 (upgrade firmware from 4,1) with 10.10.5 (14F2315) + NVIDIA Web Driver, but i only use 1x 27" Mac monitor (changed from ADC30") via DP and work perfectly without any problem, the OpenGL, OpenCL score also great. I downgraded from 10.11.x because of some hardware driver compatibility with my work. i can confirm 10.10.x(5) is very stable for me from the past year.

From your case, not so sure because of 2 monitors took more power from the GTX980 or not. The GTX980 requires 180watt (from spec), but the mini 6-pin x2 from logic board only provided 75 watt each (which only 150 watt in total, if i'm not wrong), so may be you can try only 1 monitor and check the result if it still have this problem... if no problem with 1 monitor, so you may try/need more power source to dedicated for the GTX980.

good luck.
 

h9826790

macrumors G5
Apr 3, 2014
12,800
5,622
Hong Kong
I still using EVGA GTX980 (non flashed) with my 5,1 (upgrade firmware from 4,1) with 10.10.5 (14F2315) + NVIDIA Web Driver, but i only use 1x 27" Mac monitor (changed from ADC30") via DP and work perfectly without any problem, the OpenGL, OpenCL score also great. I downgraded from 10.11.x because of some hardware driver compatibility with my work. i can confirm 10.10.x(5) is very stable for me from the past year.

From your case, not so sure because of 2 monitors took more power from the GTX980 or not. The GTX980 requires 180watt (from spec), but the mini 6-pin x2 from logic board only provided 75 watt each (which only 150 watt in total, if i'm not wrong), so may be you can try only 1 monitor and check the result if it still have this problem... if no problem with 1 monitor, so you may try/need more power source to dedicated for the GTX980.

good luck.
The slots also prove 75W, that's 225W avail in total officially. And real world test shows can draw up to around ~300W in total.

Also, just by connecting 2 monitor won't make the card draw 180W. That's just a very easy job for even a GT120. The card only draw more power when the GPU is under stress.
 

eminorb5

macrumors newbie
Apr 13, 2017
10
1
Bangkok, Thailand
The slots also prove 75W, that's 225W avail in total officially. And real world test shows can draw up to around ~300W in total.

Also, just by connecting 2 monitor won't make the card draw 180W. That's just a very easy job for even a GT120. The card only draw more power when the GPU is under stress.
thanks for info h9826790.

@beccas - never facing this kind of problem, may be you can try back to the basic steps.
- swap back to the Mac video card
- reset PRAM
- uninstall / reinstall Web Driver
- set NVIDIA Web Driver as default
- swap back the GTX980

good luck
 

beccas

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 5, 2016
82
5
thanks for info h9826790.

@beccas - never facing this kind of problem, may be you can try back to the basic steps.
- swap back to the Mac video card
- reset PRAM
- uninstall / reinstall Web Driver
- set NVIDIA Web Driver as default
- swap back the GTX980

good luck
Hi eminorb5,

Thanks for the input. I put the GT 120 back in, removed the GTX 980 and uninstalled the Nvidia driver. While my computer does go longer, I still get the freeze. Just yesterday it happened. I'm so confused and frustrated. I even upgraded to the last version of Yosemite.

I am considering just starting new with the OS.
 

eminorb5

macrumors newbie
Apr 13, 2017
10
1
Bangkok, Thailand
Hi eminorb5,

Thanks for the input. I put the GT 120 back in, removed the GTX 980 and uninstalled the Nvidia driver. While my computer does go longer, I still get the freeze. Just yesterday it happened. I'm so confused and frustrated. I even upgraded to the last version of Yosemite.

I am considering just starting new with the OS.
let's try the following... may be help...

- Disk Utility \ Repair Permission the OS drive
- System Preferences \ Startup Disk \ Re-Select the OS boot drive
- Restart

good luck.
 

beccas

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 5, 2016
82
5
Did that already but that was before I switched back the old GPU in. I will do that later today then.

Just to be clear, this is what occurs during the freeze now. The system and everything on the screen freezes but I can still move the cursor. When I restart the computer, the last messages on console are about GPU restart kernel messages. I will copy them in later when I'm on the computer.

Thanks again.