New Mac Pro w/ Kernel Panics

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by tuartboy, Apr 27, 2007.

  1. tuartboy macrumors 6502a

    tuartboy

    Joined:
    May 10, 2005
    #1
    I just received a new mac pro about 4 hours ago and after adding in my modifications (1Tb drive array, extra 4Gb ram, 2nd DVD burner) I fired it up. The thing is very fast, but quite unstable.

    In the last 4 hours I have had no less than 4 kernel panics and aperture crashed 3 other times. I have pulled out the extra 4Gb of ram from OWC and it seems to be running stable (45 min now), but I wondered if anyone else had any ideas on what to troubleshoot next.

    Could the software raid 0 array be an issue?

    I also have a logitech MX500 mouse that I love, but the drivers are not playing nicely with this new mac. I like to use the logitech driver to map all the extra buttons to expose and other various key shortcuts on my Powerbook. Is there another piece of software that can do this for free? I know of USB overdrive, but I'd like to play the field a bit before dropping another $20.

    Thanks!
     
  2. diehardmacfan macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2007
    #2
    the OWC ram does not have the apple qualified heatsinks because you ordered the ram from a third party

    if you take them out i guarentee that the machine will be perfectly fine.

    i would suggest buying these with the apple heatsinks
    they are the same that apple ships with
    http://www.maxupgrades.com/istore/index.cfm?fuseaction=product.display&product_id=157&CFID=4953575&CFTOKEN=84624053
     
  3. tuartboy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    tuartboy

    Joined:
    May 10, 2005
    #3
    Pretty sure now that it is the ram.

    Is there a way to see if they are failing? I remember seeing somewhere that the errors will go up if they overheat and you can monitor them somewhere. System profiler maybe?

    Anyone know of a good memory tester for OS X?
     
  4. brooker macrumors regular

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    Apr 4, 2007
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    PacNW
    #4
  5. tuartboy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    tuartboy

    Joined:
    May 10, 2005
    #5
    I ran rember on 2 of the 4 sticks all night with no errors. I'll do the same for the other 2 sticks tonight and see what happens.

    The sticks in right now have been stable under OS X but I got 2 bluescreens while installing XP in boot camp...
     
  6. 4God macrumors 68020

    4God

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    Apr 5, 2005
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    My Mac
    #6
  7. Celeron macrumors 6502a

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    Mar 11, 2004
    #7
    Sounds like the RAM to me. I bought my RAM from Crucial. It looks identical the original sticks that my Mac Pro came with. I downloaded iStat, a widget, yesterday which can show the memory temp.

    I think there's another program out there that can show the temp of each module, however I don't recall the name.
     
  8. akadmon macrumors 68010

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    Aug 30, 2006
    Location:
    New England
    #8
    Hardware Monitor
     
  9. 4JNA macrumors 68000

    4JNA

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2006
    Location:
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    #9
    same here

    2.66, installed OWC qualified (4x1gb) and had several KP and BSOD's. tested with rember, and extended hardware diagnostics, and found 3 of 4 bad.

    good thing about OWC is that they refund/replace no questions asked. good stuff, great company.

    can't wait to get back to 4gb, as 1gb is paging out like mad...:eek:
     
  10. tuartboy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    tuartboy

    Joined:
    May 10, 2005
    #10
    I have issued an RMA request with OWC for the 2 sticks I'm pretty sure are the problem. Very nice company and they are very quick to help and offer suggestions.

    I hope this is the last of my problems.

    P.S. Some of my anecdotal testing was done with Aperture exporting huge libraries and playing Age III at the same time. However, I forgot to update Age III from version 1.0 and it kept crashing due to a documented bug on intel systems. Yeah, that threw me...
     
  11. tuartboy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    tuartboy

    Joined:
    May 10, 2005
    #11
    I got the new ram today and I have had 3 KPs (in various configs) in the last 2 hours.

    So.... what is going on? Is it the ram? I have heard only good things about OWC ram and I just seriously doubt I would get all these bad sticks. Again, I was running 3Gb for the last 4 days with no problems. The ram has KP'd even at temps as low as 150º which tells me it's not the heatsink.

    I'm just wondering if I should send all the ram back and try another vendor or make the pilgrimige to the not-so-local mac retail location to have them diagnose.

    I have yet to get a mac with 0 out-of-the-box problems... :(
     
  12. Sam0r macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2005
    Location:
    Birmingham, UK
    #12
    Hmm, if you're having this much bad luck with ram, I'd suggest trying the ram in different sockets, if you haven't already.

    It could be that the ram caddy is at fault, could just be a dirty contact.
     
  13. tuartboy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    tuartboy

    Joined:
    May 10, 2005
    #13
    I've flipped them every which way. The real problem is that diagnosing takes hours (wait for a KP or run a memtest). The only stable setups I have had are the stock ram alone and the stock ram with only 2 OWC sticks. All 6 sticks or the 4 OWC sticks induce KPs.

    Yeah, I'm getting a little frustrated. I spend a lot of time in Adobe® Photoshop® and I don't like losing that work every time it panics (thank god aperture doesn't lose anything) before I can save.

    Maybe I'll shut the system down in a bit and clean off all the contacts with some alcohol just to be sure.
     
  14. brooker macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2007
    Location:
    PacNW
    #14
    yeesh... that sounds totally frustrating. Have you tried calling Apple? They may be able to help you diagnose other ram-related components before resorting to taking it into the store. Talk to OWC again too... i'm sure they have heard of such situations before, and may have another option for you.

    Maybe they can send you a bunch of sticks, and you can try out some combos until you find 2 that work?

    Apple or OWC should have some system of testing the ram quickly, so you don't have to wait for the KP...

    best of luck. let us know how it resolves...
     
  15. 4JNA macrumors 68000

    4JNA

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    #15
    as above, same problem, and tried all of the same solutions including cleaning everything, swapping everything, testing everything. the time required is the worst part as pointed out, nothing but swap/test/wait/panic. :mad: i also got bad sticks the second time, and ended up sending all 4 back for a refund, which OWC handled in super fashion. one of the best companies that i deal with when it comes to customer support.

    i went with a different brand, 2x2gb, and have been stable since. :) for me, 4gb is plenty, adding extra sticks to get quad channel would make no difference in daily production, and 2 sticks runs cooler than 4. best of luck getting fixed/running!
     
  16. killmoms macrumors 68040

    killmoms

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2003
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    #16
    I had a problem where my first set of 2x1GB when combined with the stock 2x512MB sticks would induce KPs. The 2x1GBs on their own were fine. I've since added two more of the same model sticks and it's still stable. As a side note the RAM in question was WinTec's Apple Certified Mac Pro RAM with the big heatsinks (not quite as big as Apple's, they're a bit shorter on one side, but still quite substantial) which I ordered from NewEgg.

    Basically: the Mac Pro, like most Macs, is just really picky about RAM, and even if you buy a bunch of the same stuff, you might STILL have problems. Grit your teeth and bear it, it's pretty likely your two replacement sticks will play better with the two you have now that are fine. And just keep that stock RAM if you ever need AppleCare service—that's what I'm doing.
     
  17. TheSpaz macrumors 604

    TheSpaz

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2005
    #17
    How do you know when a Kernel Panic is a freak thing or an ongoing problem? A couple of weeks ago, I was recording with Logic Express and my M-Audio Firewire Solo and I got a Kernel Panic. Then the other night, I was recording/watching a TV show with my EyeTV Hybrid and importing photos at the same time and I got a Kernel Panic... so I restarted and opened EyeTV again and tried to re-import the photos again and it Kernel Panicked. Then I restarted AGAIN and re-imported the photos and it was fine. I haven't had a Panic since. Maybe I should download rember and test out my RAM (I tried Apple Hardware Test and it was fine) The only times I've had Kernel Panics were recently although I've had my RAM for quite a while now. I too got my RAM from OWC.
     
  18. netnothing macrumors 68040

    netnothing

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2007
    Location:
    NH
    #18
    I returned 2 sets of OWC RAM because of Kernel Panics and ECC Errors. Not sure why, but I had no luck with the OWC DIMMS.

    I since ordered Crucial RAM. The first set ran really hot and I still had kernel panics...so I got them to replace them. The next set they sent has been working great. Runs really cool as well.

    They did have a different part number from teh first Crucial set, so I'm not sure what the difference is.

    Coming from the PC world....I'm a little frustrated with how Apple designed the Mac Pros and how picky they are with memory.

    -Kevin
     
  19. 4JNA macrumors 68000

    4JNA

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    #19
    what? couldn't hear you over the fans...

    you must have been in the 'desktop' pc world then... any intel xeon server motherboard based on the 5000 series chipset is just as picky. i have built several, and have the same problems on the other side as well.

    the advantage on the pc side is that instead of big heatsinks on more expensive ram, you get to use loud, expensive fans on cheaper ram. pick your poison. :apple:
     
  20. netnothing macrumors 68040

    netnothing

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2007
    Location:
    NH
    #20

    You're right....mostly desktops. I've dealt with plenty of servers...but you hit the nail on the head.....walk into any server room and you can't hear yourself think with the wind tunnel fans going in the servers!

    I do think Apple needs to allow the user to adjust the temp thresholds on the Mac Pros so that the fans kick in sooner. I think the default thresholds are way to high....and I don't want to HAVE to manually kick them up. I'd rather re-set the low temp for them to kick on. I think this is one of the biggest problems with the RAM in the Mac Pros.

    -Kevin
     
  21. tuartboy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    tuartboy

    Joined:
    May 10, 2005
    #21
    Another update:

    The system has been up and running hard for almost 24 hours now, but I have been getting ECC errors. I am in the middle of a tech support email volley with their support team and I think I might send all 6 sticks back and try the other type of ram they sell for the MP. Both have a giant heatsink, but I have heard better reports from users of the other type.

    I'll keep posting in the hopes it will help others. :)
     
  22. bankshot macrumors 65816

    bankshot

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2003
    Location:
    Southern California
    #22
    Yes, you should try that. As the MacRumors Guide says, the Apple Hardware Test is crap. A passed test with that means absolutely nothing.

    Keep in mind that Rember can't test all of your memory because much of it will be marked as in-use by the time you get all booted up and logged into the OS X gui. For maximum testing, one of the command-line versions of memtest is best.
     
  23. trainguy77 macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2003
    #23
    There is a program to do that. It is a modified version this: http://www.lobotomo.com/products/FanControl/index.html. Search this forum to find it. It changes what the base speed is and how fast it goes up as temperatures increase.
     
  24. robkap macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2007
    #24
    Same - Same

    I have a new Mac Pro 2.66 (a week old) and I bought 2 gig OWC memory to supplement the 1 gig that came with the machine. And, yes, I did buy the more expensive version of the OWC ram with better heat sink.

    No problems at all until today when I installed Aperture.

    I'm now on my third kernel panic in a bit less than two hours.

    Is it aperture perhaps?

    What's the best way to diagnose???

    Thanks...
     
  25. trainguy77 macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2003
    #25
    You should really start a new thread it will get much more exposure. I guess the first step would by is pull the OWC ram and see if that fixes it. Also check for ECC errors in the "about this mac" then more details section.
     

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