Finder won't open, shows up as 2 finders in "Force Quit Applications" box

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by RandomHavoc, Jul 4, 2012.

  1. RandomHavoc macrumors member

    May 26, 2010
    Help me Macrumors, you're my only hope!

    Okay, so I'm a pastor and I need to keep everything tech related as really really simple as possible so that non-tech people (almost all the church computer users) don't get confused. A problem just came up that's bugging me and I can't seem to fix.
    The basic problem is: Finder won't open when I click it, and weirdly 2 finders show up in "Force Quit Applications" box. I've tried relaunching it from the force quit box. I've used activity monitor to close/reopen the whole dock. Nothing gets rid of that second finder thing, which I'm guessing is what's causing the finder not to open when I click it (since it won't open a second one with just a click if one's already open).
    I can bypass it by right clicking and open new finder, but I don't want to have to rely on that since, again, I'm trying to keep things super simple for people that won't even know what I'm talking about if I say to right click it (yeah, I know).

    Tried to Google an answer with no luck. Please help! And thanks :)

    P.s. iMac bought in Dec 2011 is what I'm using.
  2. Sam Yikin macrumors regular

    Oct 28, 2007
  3. igucl macrumors 6502a

    Oct 11, 2003
    I wonder if this is just a matter of needing to open a new finder window:

    File > New Window
  4. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    If you haven't already done so, restart your Mac.
  5. scotpole macrumors member

    Apr 4, 2006
    On some of the newer Macs the user was not provided with a start up DVD. Because I thought Apple had made a big mistake by not giving me software to repair my computer, I called Apple and they said to access the utilities and the software restore, I needed to restart the machine and hold down Command (looks like a clover Leaf) and R at the same time. You may first need to hold the power button until your computer shuts down, then restart and hold down command-R at the same time.

    This brings you to a couple of utilities and a restore option. First try running Disk Utility. Run the repair disk option. After you run that run the repair permissions utility. Quit and Restart the Machine. If your problem still exists you may have to restore your data.

    If you listened to Apple and every once in a while attached a hard drive to your computer and allowed Time Machine to run, this should not be a problem. Again restart and hold down command R. This time you are going to want to choose the restore option and you will be guided through restoring your data from Time Machine.

    The second system may indicate a Trojan Horse, a malicious script or a virus. If you do a restore this may get rid of the problem. If you had been using time machine try to restore to a time before the problem started. You may afterwards want to scan your disk with a virus checker.

    The second system may also indicate another user or users. I do not use Boot Camp or Parallels. I do not know if they would create a second system. Finally a second system may indicate more than one partition on your hard drive. When you run the Disk Utility it should tell you how many times your hard drive is partitioned. It may be a matter of restarting in the correct partition. If you can restart your computer and get to the finder, choose system preferences under the apple menu, choose startup disk, and choose the partition you want the computer to restart into. Then restart your computer.

    Good Luck.
  6. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    You don't need to do any of that for the problem the OP is having.
    The OP's issue has nothing to do with malware. Macs are not immune to malware, but no true viruses exist in the wild that can run on Mac OS X, and there never have been any since it was released over 10 years ago. The only malware in the wild that can affect Mac OS X is a handful of trojans, which can be easily avoided by practicing safe computing (see below). Also, Mac OS X Snow Leopard and Lion have anti-malware protection built in, further reducing the need for 3rd party antivirus apps.
    1. Make sure your built-in Mac firewall is enabled in System Preferences > Security > Firewall

    2. Uncheck "Open "safe" files after downloading" in Safari > Preferences > General

    3. Disable Java in your browser (Safari, Chrome, Firefox). This will protect you from malware that exploits Java in your browser, including the recent Flashback trojan. Leave Java disabled until you visit a trusted site that requires it, then re-enable only for the duration of your visit to that site. (This is not to be confused with JavaScript, which you should leave enabled.)

    4. Change your DNS servers to OpenDNS servers by reading this.

    5. Be careful to only install software from trusted, reputable sites. Never install pirated software. If you're not sure about an app, ask in this forum before installing.

    6. Never let someone else have access to install anything on your Mac.

    7. Don't open files that you receive from unknown or untrusted sources.

    8. For added security, make sure all network, email, financial and other important passwords are long and complex, including upper and lower case letters, numbers and special characters.

    9. Always keep your Mac and application software updated. Use Software Update for your Mac software. For other software, it's safer to get updates from the developer's site or from the menu item "Check for updates", rather than installing from any notification window that pops up while you're surfing the web.
    That's all you need to do to keep your Mac completely free of any Mac OS X malware that has ever been released into the wild. While you may elect to use it, 3rd party antivirus software is not required to keep your Mac malware-free.
  7. MWPULSE macrumors 6502a


    Dec 27, 2008
    OP Have you tried creating a new account, (under system prefs>accounts) and seeing if the issue continues in your newer account. This might indicate that there are some preferences, or settings which are corrupt in your old account.

    Beyond that, you might wanna try repairing permissions in disk utility.

    Hope that helps :)

  8. woodenbrain macrumors member

    Sep 2, 2009
    I've been having a very similar problem for some time now, like the OP, I see two instances of the Finder in the Force Quit dialog on Lion 10.7.5. Activity Monitor only shows one, and 'ps axcru | grep Finder' in Terminal lists only one process also.

    So why is this a problem? Because the System refuses to shutdown or restart normally as it complains that the Finder failed to quit. I always need to restart with 'sudo shutdown -r now' in terminal.

    By the way, when I do attempt a restart and get confronted with the Finder won't quit dialog, there is then only one Finder instance according to "Force Quit", but it refuses to relaunch. (Nothing happens; no quit, no relaunch.) At that point 'ps axcru | grep Finder' does not show ANY instance of the Finder. So it's as if there is one completely phantom instance.
  9. sesuya macrumors newbie

    Jan 18, 2014

    This did the trick! Thank you!
    But I couldn't even log out via the Apple menu, since none of menus on the left side of the screen were working at all. Then I found out about the logout and restart shortcut: Command+Option+Shift+Q
    Thanks again.
  10. bigfootcreative macrumors newbie

    Apr 14, 2016
    The only trick that works is log out and then log back.

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9 July 4, 2012