Macbook GPU kernel panics resolved after Sierra update?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by sanslash85, Jun 3, 2017.

  1. sanslash85 macrumors newbie

    Jun 3, 2017
    Hey Folks!

    I was hoping someone with more knowledge than me knows what they did in the Sierra update that got rid of some GPU issues?

    I have a mid-2010 MBP 15' i7 and a couple years ago it would go into kernel panic every 20 minutes or so on yosemite. I had to give up on it because it was out of warranty, kept crashing and quite frankly I needed a new laptop. Fast forward a few years I decided to upgrade to macOS Sierra on the dam thing and noticed there was not a single crash/panic. I've been using it for a full day and it seems like new.

    I was planning on changing the capacitor on the mobo which was causing the issue but would much rather not if the software update fixed it. I counting on my laptop to crash out of no where in a few days so I dont have high hopes but I'm just not sure why it got fixed when I thought it was 100% a hardware issue..? Any thoughts, comments, or information to soothe my soul?
  2. ZapNZs, Jun 3, 2017
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2017

    ZapNZs macrumors 68020


    Jan 23, 2017
    This issue on your system is not uncommon, but IIRC it is hardware-related even though many people did not have visibly apparent symptoms prior to Yosemite or Mavericks. Changing the settings for GPU switching has helped some, and the way Sierra may manage the GPU switching settings could be different from Yosemite, and if so this would likely have some type of an effect-

    One way to help rule out hardware issues is to take it to an Apple Store or Apple Authorized Service Provider and have them run the Mac Resource Inspector with Video Switching Test (AKA MRI w/ VST.) The test should be free even though the unit is vintage. However, it seems very likely that, A) it will fail, B) it may place more stress on an already malfunctioning GPU [which you may wish to avoid if the system is functioning correctly for the time being], and C) given the age of the system, even if it does fail the results may be insignificant to you given the price of a new logic board is probably not financially justifiable at this point.

    It is possible it was related to the OS - I had tons of issues with Yosemite that were all resolved with El Capitan not unlike how I had issues with Leopard that were solved with Snow Leopard. However, from what I have read from this particular issue, newer OS' seemed linked to more issues than older ones.

    If the issues present again, you could try using a program like GFXcardStatus with the SwitchGPU script to disable automatic GPU switching.
  3. sanslash85 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 3, 2017
    Thank you ZapNZs ! Very informative post. Love hearing opinions. I did however, experience an kernel panic :(. It was no were near as frequent as it was previously but it was still a bummer. I'm going to try to browse these forums to see how to replace the issue that I believe was causing me all the problem (the capacitor.) I have to put on my engineering cap but hopefully it'll be a fun little project. Cheers!
  4. ZapNZs macrumors 68020


    Jan 23, 2017
    Have you tried disabling the graphics switching via GFXcardStatus? If this resolves the issue, it might save you a lot of time!

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3 June 3, 2017