can't change wallpaper, system preferences crashes

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Queen of Spades, Jun 22, 2008.

  1. Queen of Spades macrumors 68030

    Queen of Spades

    May 9, 2008
    The Iron Throne
    I'm getting frustrated with this, if anyone can help I'd appreciate it.

    I'm using a MacBook Pro (Penryn) running Leopard.

    Every time I try and change my wallpaper in system preferences, it crashes and asks me if I'd like to report it to Apple. It eventually gave me the "would you like to reset settings and relaunch" dialogue. Still continuously crashes. Help!

    I just want to change my damn wallpaper and this is annoying me to no end.

    Thanks in advance.
  2. Ozz.Man macrumors member

    Jun 15, 2008
    Run "permissions repair" in disk utility, and report back
  3. Queen of Spades thread starter macrumors 68030

    Queen of Spades

    May 9, 2008
    The Iron Throne
    I figured out how to do the permissions repair. I ran it, it didn't work, system preferences still crashes when I try to change the wallpaper.

    Any other ideas?
  4. KingYaba macrumors 68040


    Aug 7, 2005
    Up the irons
    You don't necessarily need your disks. From the Finder, press the keys command + shift + U together at once to bring up the utilities folder. Click on "Disk Utility" to verify and repair your permissions.

    Attached Files:

  5. Queen of Spades thread starter macrumors 68030

    Queen of Spades

    May 9, 2008
    The Iron Throne
    King Yaba graciously walked me through some troubleshooting via AIM. All fixed now! Hail to the King. :D
  6. KingYaba macrumors 68040


    Aug 7, 2005
    Up the irons
    In the event someone else needs to know:

    Open user-library-preferences and find the file and trash it. Reboot or log in/out and you're good to go.
  7. patrickmercene macrumors newbie

    Apr 27, 2010
    Help Me Too!

    I have the same exact problem, I use MacBook os x 10.5.8

    but there is no file on my library- preferences

    help me plsssssss

    plssss help meeeee

    my wallpaper is annoying :(
  8. panikhide macrumors newbie

    Jun 28, 2010
    greater permissions problems

    I have the same problem, although mine is larger in scope. All of my permissions have gone haywire. I can't change my desktop background, I can't save any preferences, Firefox always opens wanting to restore the same closed tabs, text edit always opens with the same recovered text, the root certificate ( is not trusted, and I can't access my keychain or create a new keychain.

    Any helpful suggestions would be appreciated.
  9. nik1981 macrumors newbie

    Jun 15, 2011
    same problem

    Same problem with permission files as panikhide.
    Did you fixed that somehow or you created a new acount?
    Coz in the new test account i created everything seems to work fine.
    Any helpful info will be much appreciated.
    Thank you in advance
  10. Daynos, Jun 15, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2011

    Daynos macrumors newbie

    Jun 15, 2011

    I've been having this problem for months but i finally figured it out.

    Its being caused by a corrupt file in one of the folders where your desktop pictures are coming from. (eg. i keep my backgrounds in /pictures/desktop-backgrounds and found my error here.) This folder is one I added to the file directory that appears on the left hand side of the Preferences: Desktop & screen savers dialog box. In my case a crash is observed when browsing this folder (in the desktop & screen savers prefs panel,) however no crash was observed when browsing the preloaded desktop images.

    If the same is observed for you, heres what you do.

    1. Instead of looking for that one (or few in my case) corrupt file(s) in the directory that causes your System Prefs to ****** itself, import that whole folder to iPhoto.

    2. Go back to the folder from that you imported the files and delete them.

    3. In iPhoto highlight the imported images and select File>Export.

    4. Export the files as the richest quality (obviously) PNG format back into the folder they came from.

    4.a. If(there is another folder causing a crash)
    Repeat steps 1 through 4;

    5....(*\\\Fireworks!\\\*) You're done! It should be all good.

    return 0;

    Edit: Let me know how it goes!
  11. Gadd macrumors newbie

    Aug 16, 2011
    Problems with system preferences

    Im having the same problem here, i am running lion, i am unable to access my system preferences for more than 1 second before the pinwheel appears and i have to force close the application, i first noticed this when it crashed when i changed my wallpaper, before that i was only given access to certain stock wallpapers which i thought was strange, before it crashed altogether, i have not been able to sort it out with any of the suggestions above, any help please, also no amount of restarting, repairing the disk and deleting certain preference files has helped, i am used to fixing my old windows machine but this honestly stumps me, i have also tried unhiding hidden files in an attempt to find the various files with no such luck, any help would be greatly appreciated
  12. Gadd macrumors newbie

    Aug 16, 2011
    Quick addition

    I also get this message when trying to repair my disk, not sure if this is relevant:

    Warning: SUID file “System/Library/CoreServices/RemoteManagement/” has been modified and will not be repaired.
  13. 1925007 macrumors newbie

    Dec 12, 2011
    same problem!!1

    i deleted the files already.
    what can i do now??


    could you share the solution please!!!!
    i got the same problem, i cant change my wallpaper now.

    thank you in advance!!!!
  14. leon01 macrumors newbie

    Jan 4, 2012
    I've just solved this

    I had the same problem. I set a corrupt file as my wallpaper and as a result I couldn't change the wallpaper. Also, for some reason it caused the System Preferences to keep crashing.

    I handled it by opening iPhoto, pulling up the photo I wanted as my wallpaper, clicking on 'Share' and then 'Set Desktop'.

    When that was done I could then change the desktop again at will and System Preferences was fixed.
  15. Flopsy007 macrumors newbie

    Mar 16, 2011
    Deleting worked for me

    Had the problem on a 2011 Macbook Air running OSX Lion. In my case, when hooking up an external monitor, the secondary monitor suddenly displayed a solid colored grey background (after working fine for months). System prefs would freeze when trying to change desktop picture.

    Setting desktop picture from iPhoto did not work in this case.

    Deleting (after backing up) the, as proposed by KingYaba, worked like a charm.

    Thanks for the help to, KingYaba, and everyone else posting on their experiences.
  16. S.Frank macrumors newbie

    Jan 25, 2013
    Alternate fix

    I had this problem too but was able to resolve it on the phone with Apple Care by simply moving my iPhoto Library file into a new directory (folder) and then moving it back. Basically my System Preferences was trying to locate a picture in iPhoto and there was a broken link. This move repaired the link and everything is working fine now.
  17. W00W00 macrumors newbie

    May 8, 2013
    THANK YOU! Fixed my background!

    THANK YOU so very much Leon. I literarily tried ever recommendation on here numerous times, all to no avail. It was the picture I had saved as to my desktop that was corrupt!

    Anyway thanks to you it is gone and I now have the image I want.

    Massive Thanks

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