Mac Pro Early 2009 - Can't Sleep or Shutdown without Freeze

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by MacGuySean123, Mar 19, 2015.

  1. MacGuySean123 macrumors newbie

    Mar 19, 2015
    Hi everyone,

    I'm new here and I tried searching for someone with a similar issue, but wasn't able to find anything that sounded quite like this.

    I've been living with this problem for years, by just keeping my computer on at all times with it set to never sleep, and avoiding shut downs unless I must do them.

    The Problem: Starting sometime in 2011-12 I noticed that when I'd shut my computer down, it would almost always freeze upon restart. When I say freeze, I mean that the mouse wouldn't move and everything was unresponsive. Usually I'd have to power it down by holding the button, but sometimes it would crash and restart itself and a grey warning screen would come down. I was told by Apple Care to reinstall my OS which I did at the time, but it never truly solved the problem.

    More Detail: the time it takes for it to freeze up seems to be anything from 1 minute of operating time after reboot up to 10 hours in one occasion, where I had thought the problem had gone. I fired up a youtube video and a little bit into the video, it froze. Strangely, it often seems to freeze after reboot/sleep during a youtube video. Not sure if that is coincidence or indicates some kind of graphics/video problem.

    Additionally, I sometimes use Bootcamp to run Windows 8 and have had it crash similarly and needed to force a restart after having the computer shut down, and running Windows. This makes me suspect that it could be a hardware issue rather than an OS issue, but I don't know a whole lot about computers.

    My Computer:
    Mac Pro (Early 2009)
    2 x 2.26 GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon
    8 GB RAM
    Graphics NVIDIA GeForce GT 120 512 MB

    It has no aftermarket anything inside of it. I did recently order a new PCI SSD hard drive for it, but it hasn't arrived yet. The thought of shutting my computer down for this purpose made me think of asking some smart folks like yourselves.

    Any advice on diagnosing this issue would be greatly helpful! Thanks to all!
  2. Macsonic macrumors 65816


    Sep 6, 2009
    Hi MacGuySean123. I am no tech expert but it may be a failing HD since the freezing also happens in Windows. You may try using another HD and see if the freezing problems still occurs. You may also check if the HD has ticking sound. Hope it gets resolved.
  3. MIKX macrumors 6502


    Dec 16, 2004
    Here's what I would do.

    1. Boot from the install disk and repair permissions.

    2. Run the MP for a while to see if the problem persists.

    3.Turn the MP off, remove the graphics card & remove and re-install it
    and it's relevant power cables.

    4. Same as 2.

    5. Turn off the MP, remove all internal drive and clean the contacts
    with a soft eraser. Do the same with all memory sticks.
    Also used canned air to blow dust from around the CPUs . .they get
    very dusty therefor hotter. It is easy to remove the cover from over
    the CPUs

    6. Same as 2.

    7. This will probably fix it - Back up all important stuff, Boot from the
    install disk then update by downloading the COMBO upgrades from
    the Apple site until you arrive at your OS X desired version.

    8. Same as 2.

    9. Shut down the MP. Remove the power cord . .wait 5 minutes and then
    press and hold the power button for 15 seconds.

    10. ( you could do this after 1.)
    Shut down the MP. Next, while hold down these keys . .
    P + R _ The Apple key + the Alt/Option key . .restart the MP .. until you hear the Happy Mac chime three times.
    This is called :Resetting the PRAM.

    Hope you sort it out. :)
  4. MacGuySean123 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 19, 2015
    Thanks so much, MIKX.

    Just to be sure, you mean to use the install disk from 2009 when I purchased the computer, right? With OS X 10.5?
  5. MIKX macrumors 6502


    Dec 16, 2004
    Sure, why not? The original install disks were specifically designed for your particular Mac Pro only.

    You can either ( afterwards ) restore from a TimeMachine backup or just upgrade to 10.9.5 or 10.10.
  6. thefredelement macrumors 65816


    Apr 10, 2012
    New York
    Nice tips!

    I'd just try the PRAM first if it could avoid having to do the other stuff.

    - Also, you can check some logs in Console and see if anything sticks out at you.

  7. MacGuySean123 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 19, 2015
    Thanks so much guys -

    I booted from the install disk as suggested. I was not able to verify permissions for Macintosh HD from the Disk Utility there. I could verify the disk, so I did that.

    I then did the PRAM reset as suggested and have been running smoothly for a number of hours. I put the computer to sleep and have woken it up also without incident so far. I'll report back if the freezing happens again after trying the other suggested steps above.

    It's funny, the Apple Care representative had me do the PRAM reset way back when as well as the power button held down for 15 seconds thing, but it never seemed to resolve the issue. So if it works this time, I'll be quite pleased and pleasantly surprised. And if not, at least I have some other avenues to explore as possible fixes.
  8. Macsonic macrumors 65816


    Sep 6, 2009
    Good to hear all is running fine. In the past, even after I've consulted with the Apple Care representative, I would still try to get second opinions. Not saying Apple tech reps are not reliable. It may be everyday they handle dozens of machines for repairs over the phone and they may not be aware of the usage history.

Share This Page