Mac Pro turns itself on after shutdown

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Notawiz, Aug 18, 2012.

  1. Notawiz macrumors newbie

    Sep 7, 2008
    Hi all!

    I just experienced the weirdest thing:

    I had put my Mac Pro into sleep mode, as I often do, and gone to sleep myself. A couple of hours later I woke up to the noise of the computer's fan. I thought it would soon stop, whatever it was doing, and went back to sleep again. But a couple of hours later the fan was still spinning.

    I woke up the computer, quit all apps one by one and shut the whole thing down.

    Just as it was supposed turn totally off, I heard the fanfare and to my extreme surprise it started to boot up. Soon enough my Mac was up and running again - and what's even more strange: it opened up all the apps that I had just quit.

    So, any ideas? What the hell is going on? I'm positive that I clicked "Shut down" in the menu - and even if I didn't, why would the apps open after a reboot, and why was the fan spinning for hours on in the sleep mode?

    Is my Mac about to kick the bucket?

    I just ran the hard drive check the other day, no errors. Also fixed the permissions and used Clean My Mac to clear up the system.

    Mac Pro (2009), 8-core, 24GB, 2TB (1TB free)
  2. Dustman macrumors 65816


    Apr 17, 2007
    Likely a faulty power button.

    EDIT: Sorry, I clearly can't read. Was it just the once? It could have been an app that just refused to quit and the system just went into standby instead.
  3. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    If you really shut it down, it won't boot up on its own unless you have a scheduled startup in energy saver preferences. Also, the apps could restart if you didn't uncheck the box when shutting down, or if you have them set to automatically launch on startup.

    Try closing all apps before shutting down. Also, check the following locations for anything set to auto-launch on startup:
    • System Preferences > Accounts > yourusername > Login Items
      (Lion and ML users: System Preferences > Users & Groups > yourusername > Login Items)

    • /Library/LaunchAgents/
      (Lion and ML users: In Finder, click Go > Go to Folder > then enter the path above)

    • ~/Library/LaunchAgents/
      (Lion and ML users: In Finder, click Go > Go to Folder > then enter the path above)

    • /Library/StartupItems/
      (Lion and ML users: In Finder, click Go > Go to Folder > then enter the path above)

    For sleep issues, you may find some useful ideas here:

    Also, I would not recommend CleanMyMac, based on the number of complaints that have been posted in this forum and elsewhere. As an example: CleanMyMac cleaned too much. While you may not have experienced problems yet, enough people have that it's wise to avoid it, especially since there are free alternatives that have better reputations, such as Onyx.
  4. robinp macrumors 6502

    Feb 1, 2008
    I've been having very similar problems. Same model of mac pro, same weird fan thing (happens whenever left when you'd normally expect it to sleep) and a couple of times that weird restarting after shutdown
  5. Notawiz thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 7, 2008
    Hi again, thanks for the answers!


    - It's the first time that this specific thing happened.

    - I had closed all the apps before shutdown, all the "lights" were out - so I'm pretty sure there wasn't any app refusing to close.


    - No schedules in my energy saving preferences.

    - The box is unchecked and stays that way. I didn't find it useful in any way. Even if I wanted to continue from where I left off, doing it this way seems to be painfully slow. I tried it a few times, but even if the only thing left open was Safari with a few tabs, it would take forever to reopen them. So until Apple finds an efficient way to do this, it's not for me.

    - A few items in my launch folders (some background stuff), but none of them related to the apps that were opened after this shutdown (Mail, Safari, Logic). Plus, this was the only time they were opened. (And as I said: I had closed them all before the shutdown.)

    - Thanks for the CleanMyMac info. I don't recall having any problems - although I actually haven't noticed any kind of difference after the clean up. No change for good or bad. I've also used Onyx a few times. Never noticed any improvements.

    My Mac Pro is getting slower all the time, but I've come to accept this as the nature of the computers today. I use my Mac all the time, it's under a lot of strain. I might have simultaneously open iPhoto, Photoshop, Illustrator and Corel Draw under VMFusion/Windows - and my work files may be as large as 1-2 GB. Other times I may have my Logic (with 50 tracks and even more plugins), iTunes and Spotify open, and who knows how many Safari tabs.

    So: slow, yes, but these kind of weird things - they get me worried.

    The thing with the fan has happened several times. I think I've noticed it like five times now. Mac goes to sleep just fine - but after a couple of hours it starts the fan. That's all that happens, as far as I can see. But it won't stop. I think it would spin forever, if I didn't wake up the computer. Then it settles down - spinning still, of course, but not in that loud way.

    Oh, and sometimes I do have the problem that my Mac just WON'T go to sleep. It starts the sleep procedure, but after the display has been off for a few seconds the computer wakes up again. I see no apparent reason for this. The indexing indicator isn't flashing, none of the apps is doing anything specific. And after this, if I put the computer to sleep again, it will always stay asleep.

    So there's a few things to chew on. I don't know. I'm about to give up again. Perhaps another loan and a new Mac Pro. My computers just don't last that long. Never had the same machine more than four years.
  6. ColdCase macrumors 68030

    Feb 10, 2008
    What kind of USB devices are you using? How are the connections? Do you have a pet that runs across the keyboard?

    On sleep, sometimes the fans will run for awhile to cool the boards prior to sleeping.
  7. ndraves macrumors member

    Jan 19, 2011
    I have had this on my MP. Sometimes I click "Shut Down" and it performs a restart. If I try again then it does shut down. This only happens once in a while but plenty of times so I know it's not me clicking on "Restart" accidentally.

    Also the MP really doesn't sleep well if you have Wake on LAN enabled, it does all sorts of weird things. Since disabling that (I don't really need that feature) it sleeps fine on it's own.
  8. nREMfan macrumors member

    Feb 10, 2010
    My 5,1 started doing this over the past two weeks. Go to shut down via the Apple Menu... and it restarts. However, the second try it will shut down as it is supposed to. I was thinking it was due to the firmware upgrade I applied to my Crucial SSD. But after reading, apparently not.

    I've done the normal steps; verify/rebuild permissions, zap PRAM, and have run Onyx. But the problem is still there.

    Weird and freegin' annoying.
  9. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    Time doesn't make a computer slower. In fact, barring any hardware problems, computers don't actually slow down. You just perceive them as slower because they're doing more work, so a particular task may take longer. The CPU still operates at the same clock speed, RAM still performs at the same speed, etc. If someone has insufficient RAM (which you don't), they could have paging activity, which involves writing to a hard drive, a process that is slower than RAM speed. Ultimately, your performance is based primarily on what you have running at any point in time.
    That's not really a strain on your computer. That's what it was designed to do.
    If your fan is spinning up without increased heat, try resetting the SMC.

    Did you go through the links I posted on sleep issues? Most people are able to diagnose the cause using that information.

    When you're experiencing that problem:
    1. Launch Activity Monitor
    2. Change "My Processes" at the top to "All Processes"
    3. Click on the CPU column heading once or twice, so the arrow points downward (highest values on top).
    4. Click on the System Memory tab at the bottom.
    5. Take a screen shot of the entire Activity Monitor window, then scroll down to see the rest of the list, take another screen shot
    6. Post your screenshots.

    They should last longer than that. My primary computer is a 4+ year old MBP that still runs as fast as when I first took it out of the box. No performance issues at all. Your computer doesn't have to slow down with time. You just need to diagnose what's going on.
    Repairing permissions and resetting NVRAM are not "cure alls" to be performed on a regular basis. Both are used to address very particular issues. Unless you have those particular issues, repairing permissions or resetting NVRAM is a waste of time.

  10. nREMfan macrumors member

    Feb 10, 2010
    Agreed. But never said anything about the VRAM.
  11. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    Not VRAM. I said NVRAM. You said you zapped PRAM. From the link I included in my post:
  12. nREMfan macrumors member

    Feb 10, 2010
    Gotcha thx
  13. robinp macrumors 6502

    Feb 1, 2008
    I figured out my problem was being caused by my Logitech mouse. Sorted!
  14. Ted13 macrumors 6502a

    Dec 29, 2003
    Did you ever figure it out? Same symptoms has been going on for years and multiple OS X releases, couple of changes of the boot drive, a clean OS X install, switching to a PCIe SSD as the boot drive. I always thought it was a being caused by my EyeTV software/hardware - but I switched to a TiVo recently and it is still happening -- reboots after shutdown # 1, shuts down successfully after # 2.

    Ideas welcome!

    2009 Mac Pro, Single Quad core CPU, 8 GB ram.

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