MacPro freezing completely and display going nuts

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Daschund, Jul 5, 2010.

  1. Daschund macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2003
    Location:
    New York Citeeeeeeyyyy!
    #1
    Hi all,

    Don't know if anyone had this problem before, but it's become kinda regular with me that the display would start to flicker heavily at the same time that the computer would freeze completely. Nothing works (keyboard, mouse, etc) and the only way to get out of it is to press and hold the power button and do a hard shut down. I'm attaching a video of what the display does when it freezes. Also, if I try to access the computer via Screen Share from another computer after the freeze, all I get is a black screen.

    Here is the video:

    http://files.me.com/daschund/ojol8k

    Any help?

    Thanks!
     
  2. Daschund thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2003
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    New York Citeeeeeeyyyy!
    #2
    Nobody? :-(

    Not even an idea on what it might be?
     
  3. arkitect macrumors 601

    arkitect

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2005
    Location:
    Bath, United Kingdom
    #3
    Most probably time for a new GPU…
    :(
    I had the same issue/symptoms a few months ago.
    Replaced the GPU and all is fine.
     
  4. slughead macrumors 68040

    slughead

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2004
    #4
    looks like a GPU issue

    what kind of GPU do you have?

    Apple menu -> about this mac -> more info -> PCI cards

    Look for an ATI or NVIDIA entry and let us know the model
     
  5. Daschund thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2003
    Location:
    New York Citeeeeeeyyyy!
    #5
    I have the NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GT.

    So is it possible then that the GPU makes the whole computer freeze? I can't even pause iTunes via the keyboard when that happens...
     
  6. wafl iron macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2007
    #6
    is it still under warranty?

    take it in and get it replaced.

    if its not under warranty,

    bake the 8800gt in the oven.
     
  7. arkitect macrumors 601

    arkitect

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2005
    Location:
    Bath, United Kingdom
    #7
    Yes.
    The whole Mac freezes and you are only able to "resurrect" it by force shutdown… only for the whole process to repeat.

    Try booting in Safe Mode…
    You lose a lot of graphic support — but you can get a modicum of work done as long as it is not graphics intensive.
     
  8. Daschund thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2003
    Location:
    New York Citeeeeeeyyyy!
    #8
    Bummer. I guess safe mode won't work for me as what I do is pretty much graphics intense... Mainly Photoshop.

    Any recommendation of a good video card?
     
  9. arkitect macrumors 601

    arkitect

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2005
    Location:
    Bath, United Kingdom
    #9
    Well options are limited. :(
    What Mac Pro do you have? 1,1 or…?

    Also consider buying a PC card and flashing the ROM to work on your Mac. I wasn't brave enough and paid the Apple premium for this one.
    If you do go the flash your own card route start with Cindori's excellent advice and tools:
    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=877441
    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=713428
     
  10. Daschund thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2003
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    New York Citeeeeeeyyyy!
    #10
    Mine is the MacPro3,1

    I know we don't have much alternatives, I was just wondering if anyone have bought any of the available ones and their thoughts on it. Are you happy with yours?

    The one I have now, the Nvidia 8800 has 512Mb, would I benefit from going up to one that has 1GB?

    Sorry about the questions, but I'm a completely noob when it comes to video cards.

    Thanks for all your help guys!
     
  11. grondak macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2010
    #11
    Hi Daschund,


    My Mac Pro 3,1 has exactly the same behavior that you show you in your video. I have the 1GB NVIDIA GeForce GTX 285. I just upgraded to 10.6.4 and still have the problem. I'm going to reset the PRAM in a minute and see if that causes the problem to disappear for a while. I'll reply to this thread with a status update either a) in a couple of days, or b) the next time the flickering/lockup happens.

    -- Grondak
     
  12. Gomff macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2009
    #12
    Personally, I would buy a GT 120 from the Apple store and wait for the 58xx cards to be released which it looks like will happen soon. It's not a big performer but it's also not too expensive and should get you through until the new cards come out and we know what the flashing options are.

    The problem with buying an Apple 4870 card is that they're poor value for money right now as they're quite old. The problem with flashing a PC 4870 card is that it's very difficult to find a an original reference design card which will take the original Mac 4870 ROM. There are a lot of cheaper built non reference design cards which have been having issues of late with Apple system updates, because they require altered ROM versions. Unless you want to spend time on these forums reading up on patches and workarounds, I'd keep away from the flashing options right now.

    If your 8800 card is out of warranty, you could try baking it in the oven to see if that eliminates any soldered contact problems but I'd google the whole thing first to make sure you know what you're getting into. I'd also be ready to drop some cash for a replacement card in case it doesn't work.

    You could also contact Apple and tell them you've got a faulty 8800 and that there are well documented reliability issues with them and see if they'll help you out.....Can't do any harm.
     
  13. grondak macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2010
    #13
    Well, it just happened again, so resetting the PRAM isn't a (permanent) cure.
     
  14. Kaji79 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2010
    #14
    Are you comfortable opening it up? Mine did the same thing, so I pulled everything slotted out. I used some compressed air to blow it out, and reinstalled everything and have not had a problem since. Even though most hardware has clamps or screws, socket creep still happens.
     
  15. Daschund thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2003
    Location:
    New York Citeeeeeeyyyy!
    #15
    Hi Kaji,

    I opened it yesterday night and removed the video card, blew it with compressed air as much as I could and then re-installed it. Let's see how it goes, Tonight and tomorrow will probably be the test as I have a lot of work to be done.

    I'll let you guys know if it makes any difference!

    Thanks,

    Daschund
     
  16. grondak macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2010
    #16
    I upgraded to the newest GTX 285 drivers and I haven't seen the problem in a week. I'm hopeful!
     

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