2011 Mini - Corrupt graphics chip?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by super_kev, Mar 24, 2014.

  1. super_kev macrumors 6502

    super_kev

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2005
    Location:
    USofA
    #1
    Every time I log into my Mini, the screen is black except for where there is activity (mouse, scrolling iTunes info window, temp, etc). This started happening about six months after I got my Mid 2011 2.3Ghz i5/HD3000 Mac Mini, (about 2.5 years ago or so). It's used as headless media server and nothing else seems wrong, but it's still driving me nuts every time I log in. Temps are normal, nothing over 120-130. I've taken a screenshot. I have never had this happen to any of my Macs over the years, and system upgrades don't seem to help at all. Do I need to pull it apart and reseat the heat sink, or has anyone else heard of this?
     

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  2. Earl Urly macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2004
    #2
    Have you tried hooking up a monitor to it? If the system doesn't detect a monitor, the GPU cuts out and the screen updates slower.

    You could try making your own headless dongle or just buy one from Amazon for $15, it may solve your problem.
     
  3. super_kev thread starter macrumors 6502

    super_kev

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2005
    Location:
    USofA
    #3
    No, I haven't. Good idea, but it's not that the updates are slow - it's as if they aren't drawn at all unless I move the mouse into the area or change the position of a window. Is that normal if there is no display hooked up?
     
  4. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2010
    #4
    Upgrades wouldn't help. It looks like it could be a hardware problem. Parts of what should be within the framebuffer aren't being drawn. I doubt reseating the heat sink would do anything, although it would be interesting to know how this turns out. I don't read about too many mini failures, but I always figured part could be their lower volume compared to the notebook lines.
     
  5. nufanec macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2005
    #5
    Go to System Preferences > Security & Privacy authorise and press the Advanced button. You probably have a check next to the "Log out after XX minutes of inactivity" option, and this value is set to a time greater than your display sleep time in Energy Saver. Either disable it or change the value to less than the display sleep time and you'll be sorted.
     
  6. chrfr macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2009
    #6
    Yes, it's normal when these are run headless. You can mitigate the problem by setting the display to never sleep in Energy Saver but the real fix is to use the headless dongle linked above, or connect a display.
     
  7. super_kev thread starter macrumors 6502

    super_kev

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2005
    Location:
    USofA
    #7
    Well, skeptical though I was, I grabbed the CompuTech dongle from Amazon and it's perfectly fine now. Thanks for your help!
     

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