I get around 40 to 50 Kernal Panics everyday!

ebally

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 18, 2004
124
0
London, UK
The Kernal panics happen totally randomly when using different software, (iTunes, Safari, Mail, QuickTime, Word, Excel, BBedit, etc).

I have a PowerBook G4 800Mhz
1GB of RAM (2 Dimms. Installed by Apple when I purchased the Laptop).
I am using Mac OS X 10.4.1

I don’t have any external hardware connected to the laptop.
I don’t have any firewalls running.
I haven’t installed any extra fonts on the system.
There are no applications running in the background.
All software and firmware are up to date.

Here’s what I have tried so far:

Repair permissions (using Terminal).
Check for any disk errors (using “fsck –f” and again using install CD).
Zapped RAM (using alt+option+p+r on startup).
Run a system maintenance application (Updating Prebinding, clearing cache, etc).
2 clean installs of Tiger.
Removing the RAM and installing it again.
Run Hardware Diagnostic CD that came with my PowerBook.

I would be very grateful if someone has any other suggestions I could try?
 

telecomm

macrumors 65816
Nov 30, 2003
1,371
8
Rome
This is probably a stupid question, but you list "removing the RAM and installing it again". Have you tried running your PB with only one module at a time?
 

SpaceMagic

macrumors 68000
Oct 26, 2003
1,740
0
Cardiff, Wales
Agree with telecom.. the RAM may have been zapped with a static charge at some point by accident and has caused it to act irrationally. (cos RAM's reason is intrinsic too :p - Immanuel Kant)
 

Sun Baked

macrumors G5
May 19, 2002
14,874
57
telecomm said:
This is probably a stupid question, but you list "removing the RAM and installing it again". Have you tried running your PB with only one module at a time?
If you think you've eliminated SW...

Could also be a bad HD, but those are harder to play with in a portable than a tower.
 

andiwm2003

macrumors 601
Mar 29, 2004
4,325
379
Boston, MA
when i had faulty ram in my pb it showed up fine in hardware test. after a few tries it showed up as defect. then it died completely and hardware test didn't run anymore.

probably your logic board is defect.

at that point it's time to call apple.

sorry, but get it repaired asap.
 

robbieduncan

Moderator emeritus
Jul 24, 2002
24,480
9
London
I don't want to sound patronising but are these really kernel panics? There seem to be a large number of people saying kernel panic when they really mean application failure. Unless you see the grey screen with the restart message and are forced to restart your machine there and then it's not a kernel panic, it's simply an application failure. If you are seeing more than 1 or 2 real kernel panics a day your machine has real issues. Most people will only see 1 or 2 a month if they are really unlucky.
 

jacg

macrumors 6502a
Jan 16, 2003
853
27
UK
Only Kernal Panics I had on my PB were when the airport card wasn't seated properly. If you have one, you might want to check it firmly plugged in.
 

iMetalG5

macrumors 6502a
Apr 13, 2005
786
0
my god, take it back! i've only had one kernel panic (knock on wood) since owning macs. If i had as many as you say you did, i'd go nuts! take it back!
 

Westside guy

macrumors 603
Oct 15, 2003
5,381
2,201
The soggy side of the Pacific NW
You don't mention if you've got any Haxies, or other third party system extensions or drivers running. While I agree that it's probably your RAM or possibly the logic board, I'd get rid of any system addons first because that's the least problematic to do. Then follow telecomm's advice, and run with only one module for a while to see if your problems go away (alternate use both of the DIMM modules, and also the DIMM slots if your computer will let you).

I'd be surprised if a bad hard drive could cause a kernel panic.

An outside possibility is third-party software you have starting up at login - SSH managers, iTunes add-ons, menubar extras, etc. If they misbehave they can lock up your system (although they shouldn't be able to cause a true kernel panic - see robbieduncan's post to determine if you're really having kernel panics or just lockups).
 

ebally

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 18, 2004
124
0
London, UK
Thank you for all your feedback.

Thank you for all your feedback guys.

I will try using only 1 Dimm of RAM tonight, and alternating between the two slots, to see if it is the RAM causing the panics.

If it doesn't make a difference, then it is off to the Apple Store Genius Bar tomorrow morning for me (luckily I live close).

Anyone willing to give me an estimate as to how much a logic board costs?
 

robbieduncan

Moderator emeritus
Jul 24, 2002
24,480
9
London
ebally said:
Thank you for all your feedback guys.

I will try using only 1 Dimm of RAM tonight, and alternating between the two slots, to see if it is the RAM causing the panics.

If it doesn't make a difference, then it is off to the Apple Store Genius Bar tomorrow morning for me (luckily I live close).

Anyone willing to give me an estimate as to how much a logic board costs?
More than you will be willing to pay! Seriously I'm guessing around £500. Apple logic boards are vastly overpriced. Anyone would think that they want you to buy a new machine!
 

ebally

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 18, 2004
124
0
London, UK
robbieduncan said:
I don't want to sound patronising but are these really kernel panics? There seem to be a large number of people saying kernel panic when they really mean application failure. Unless you see the grey screen with the restart message and are forced to restart your machine there and then it's not a kernel panic, it's simply an application failure. If you are seeing more than 1 or 2 real kernel panics a day your machine has real issues. Most people will only see 1 or 2 a month if they are really unlucky.
Yes, unfortunately they really are Kernal panics.
 

ebally

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 18, 2004
124
0
London, UK
Okay, bad news for me as I've tried alternating the 2 Dimms of RAM in both slots, but I still get panics.

I can't test the Airport card as I haven't got the right screw-driver.

If the logic boards are that expensive, then I would much rather buy a new PowerBook. (Though I will most likely wait for the 2nd rev. of the PowerBook G5 or PowerBook Duel Processor).
 

IJ Reilly

macrumors P6
Jul 16, 2002
17,915
1,466
Palookaville
Try replacing the RAM instead of alternating. (How are you doing that BTW? -- I thought only one of the RAM slots was user-accessible)

Another diagnostic to try before assuming the worst is to boot the Mac from an external hard drive.
 

ebally

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 18, 2004
124
0
London, UK
IJ Reilly said:
Try replacing the RAM instead of alternating. (How are you doing that BTW? -- I thought only one of the RAM slots was user-accessible)

Another diagnostic to try before assuming the worst is to boot the Mac from an external hard drive.
No, both slots are easily accesable by the user.

I tried using both Dimms of RAM (one at a time) on both the top and bottom slots.
 

IJ Reilly

macrumors P6
Jul 16, 2002
17,915
1,466
Palookaville
ebally said:
No, both slots are easily accesable by the user.

I tried using both Dimms of RAM (one at a time) on both the top and bottom slots.
Okay, I'm not familiar with the model. But I'm suggesting using different RAM, and also rebooting on an external drive if possible.
 

ebally

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 18, 2004
124
0
London, UK
IJ Reilly said:
Okay, I'm not familiar with the model. But I'm suggesting using different RAM, and also rebooting on an external drive if possible.
I don't really have access to different RAM or an external hard drive.
 

IJ Reilly

macrumors P6
Jul 16, 2002
17,915
1,466
Palookaville
ebally said:
I don't really have access to different RAM or an external hard drive.
Perhaps if you get into the Apple Store you might suggest these avenues of diagnoses. They should have a firewire drive on hand with OSX installed on it at the very least, and possibly some suitable RAM. I'm particularly suspicious of your hard drive given that you can install the OS without experiencing kernal panics. RAM going bad after as long as you've evidently owned this Mac is somewhat less likely, especially given where you live. (Here in the arid Southwest, damage to components from static discharges are more common than in damp climates.)

Best guess only really at this point. So far you've done everything else I would have recommended.
 

aricher

macrumors 68020
Feb 20, 2004
2,211
0
Chi-il
I've had that same problem twice - both times it has been a faulty logic board. Thanks to AppleCare it hasn't cost me anything to replace - except the cost of AppleCare obviously.
 

tdhurst

macrumors 601
Dec 27, 2003
4,003
101
Phoenix, AZ
Huh?

ebally said:
If the logic boards are that expensive, then I would much rather buy a new PowerBook. (Though I will most likely wait for the 2nd rev. of the PowerBook G5 or PowerBook Duel Processor).
That is a LOOOOOONG TIME to put up with 40-50 kernel panics a day...I dunno if I would last longer than one day if that happened to me.