Mac Mini server (late 2012) Frequent crashes

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by Robsoho, Dec 1, 2014.

  1. Robsoho macrumors newbie

    Dec 1, 2014
    New Zealand
    Hi I look after a mac mini server for a customer and just can't track down what is causing a frequent crash on this machine. The machine is running 10.9.5 and 3.2.2. It is configured with 2x1TB drives and 8GB ram.

    It has had this crash since received from the apple store. But when we sent it in for testing it was returned to us saying nothing is wrong with the device.

    The was the crash manifests is the device stays on but all services become unresponsive, requiring a hard reset. During the crash it writes nothing to logs so the only useful piece of information I have is what it was doing before it crashed.

    Which in every case was DHCP, except for when it was crashing before installing It is currently in use but having to restart it 2-3 times a week is becoming frustrating.

    So if anyone has experienced a similar problem or knows of any tools that could help me diagnose what is going on that would be helpful

    Thank you for your time,
  2. Idgit macrumors 6502


    Mar 14, 2004
    Have you added 3rd party RAM? If so, remove one chip and test the machine. Does it crash? If yes, restore the RAM chip and remove the other. Test again. If you only have the stock Apple RAM, test the same way.

    Are you on wifi or ethernet? If one, disable it and test the other.

    If you disable the DHCP server, do the crashes stop? What router are you using for your home network?

    Enter the following in the and then post the results here:
    kextstat | grep -v apple

  3. rigormortis, Dec 2, 2014
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2014

    rigormortis macrumors 68000


    Jun 11, 2009
    reset pram

    reset smc

    run Apple hardware test and click on extended test

    apple hardware test / or the genius bar diags might spit out an error code simply if you do not have it
    plugged into the charger. so make sure its plugged in

    when shutting down, uncheck reopen windows when logging on once in a while

    reinstall os x and slowly add stuff back to it to see if its a software thing?

    take the hard disks out and run hdd regenerator on them or maybe hold them to your ear and see if you can hear it clicking. check for a blown smart sensor. freezing could be caused by a hard disk getting stuck on thermal recalibration / retries.. hdd regenerator will test every single sector over and over to make sure the hard disks are good... hard disk errors are INVISIBLE to the operating system, because the hard disk corrects them on the fly. at some point , this fails. and it will actually say your smart status is bad. as long as it says smart status verified, the drive thinks its still okay! but it could cause problems to the o/s like stalling

    back up to time machine

    erase entire hard disk

    reisntall os x.

    run boinc. run seti@home, run folding@home. those projects will use every bit of cpu power your computer has. if it has a problem with it freezing , it will freeze with boinc running full blast with 4 or whatever projects running at once. if it won't freeze with boinc using up 100 % of all 4 cores you have, for like 48 hours or longer then it has to be something in your software. if you have 4 cores or 8 cores , or whatever, you should see 4 or 8 set@home processes running at the same time. that is what you want to see.

    theres even boinc processes. like milky way @ home, that will use up 100 % of your video card
    join that one too , if its available for your video card.

    if it crashes on a clean os x install with boinc running then you know its something wrong with the hardware.
    maybe the heatsinks on the cpu or video cards are not good
  4. pianoman88 macrumors regular

    Aug 20, 2010
    Talk to a manager ...

    But when we sent it in for testing it was returned to us saying nothing is wrong with the device.

    "Geniuses" at Apple Store couldn't see a problem I had with power supply on my Mac Pro despite video I took. Everything tested "OK". I demanded to speak with a manager on my third trip and he said "it's the power supply". Duh.

    Keep pushing.
  5. Robsoho thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 1, 2014
    New Zealand
    Unfortunately we don't have official apple stores in NZ, so it was a chain of being sent to 3rd party back to apple care and back to 3rd party again.

    As for the stress testing rigormortis I will have chance to do that this weekend when its not in use.

    The Machine came with the factory RAM upgrade, and I haven't opened the machine to test the individual sticks yet.

    The frequency of the crashes isn't that high. But as its an always on server even one or two a week is not acceptable. But until the term finishes I don't have a chance to pull it out and put in a loan machine.

    Also Haven't had a chance to even be on the machine to pull kextstat for you sorry. Will update on Monday with more info but thanks for your input so far.
  6. Robsoho thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 1, 2014
    New Zealand
    kextstat | grep -v apple

    Index Refs Address Size Wired Name (Version) <Linked Against>

    not sure if that is the result you were looking for. Let me know if I missed something
  7. Idgit macrumors 6502


    Mar 14, 2004
    That command will reveal whether you have any 3rd-party kexts installed. I'm a bit surprised that you don't have any. You must run a clean, minimal system. This is what I get if I enter that command in the Terminal:
  8. Robsoho thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 1, 2014
    New Zealand
    Yeah its just a fresh install running As a hardware isolation I ran it off the same hdd different machine, so I can say that the crash is software/configuration related. Or HDD related...

    But have checked the hdd smart stats permissions and file system. all ok.

    Is there anywhere in other logs I should start hunting for the cause of the lockup.

    I'm going to throw in a second machine to do dns and dhcp, I can't move the active directory or shares right now though as their in the middle of writing reports.
  9. chrfr macrumors 604

    Jul 11, 2009
    What services are running on this machine? I was having problems with starting up for many users with networked home folders on the server, and eventually apparently using up all the RAM and causing the server to go into a state like yours. I seem to have resolved it by turning off Spotlight entirely on the server.

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