Safari and Mail crashing, please help


macrumors member
Original poster
Jul 1, 2003
Boston, MA
I started having a problem on my 12" PB a couple of days ago, and nothing I have tried so far has helped at all. Every time I try to load up Mail, it gives me the spinning beach ball and says loading address book, where it stays until I force quit. If I leave it trying to open it seems to put a good load on the processer because the fans come on and stay on until I kill it. Safari started having a problem the same day where whenever I try and enter text into any field on a webpage, it freezes, the only solution also being force quit. I have tried resetting, running software update, running virus scans, and nothing has helped me. Anybody have an idea or three?


macrumors G4
By reset, do you mean restarting your Mac, repairing your permissions or just logging off?

If you haven't tried all the above (aside logging off), try those things and see what happens.

Create a new user and try in that account to access Safari - that should tell you whether it's system or user account specific.


macrumors 6502a
May 7, 2001
Bad ram?

If a variety of apps suddenly start crashing it could signal that you have bad ram. Sometimes good RAM just goes bad. Such a shame when that happens.

Colonel Panik

macrumors regular
Feb 23, 2004
Dublin, Ireland
The usual procedure for isolating a problem is:

* create a new user account. Do the applications work there? (I have a test account just for this purpose on all my Macs).
If yes, then the problem lies in your user account. Try moving the safari/mail preferences (yourname/library/preferences/ & to another location. The apps will create a new preferences file on launch. You will lose your preferences, but the apps should work. If they don't work, then it's not the preferences file, and you should reinstall those two applications.
If that doesn't solve the problem, but you are sure it's just a problem specific to your account, then you'll have to do a bit of research to find out which preferences it could be...

If no, then there is a core system problem. If yes, then you should think about anything you did in the last few days (installed a program/deleted some files) which might have caused the problem. You are probably best advised to reinstall your system, nasty as that is.

But, before you reinstall, check your RAM, like buffsldr said. Take out any extra RAM you installed, and see if that makes a difference. When RAM is bad, the problems are weird...


Moderator emeritus
Mar 10, 2004
Bergen, Norway
Does it affect any other (of Apple's) application, like iCal or Address Book...?

A long shot: You didn't mess with your fonts just before the programs started acting up, did you? If one of the system fonts, like Helvetica, is missing or damaged, many of Apple's own apps will behave much like you describe...
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