Snow Leopard Beach Balls 10-15 seconds

Discussion in 'macOS' started by catachip, Sep 9, 2009.

  1. catachip macrumors regular


    Jun 7, 2007
    Vancouver, British Columbia
    Hi folks,

    I have a late 2008 unibody MacBook Pro.

    I recently did an erase and install of Snow Leopard. Since then, I have been noticing times when my whole computer will lock up with the beach ball for about 10-15 seconds. During that time any music in iTunes will stop and I cannot change any apps or press any on screen buttons. I can movie windows around, but not modify them.

    After this time, the system will resume and I can continue. This happens about once a day. It might happen when I go to open a photo in iPhoto or click a video link in Safari or other things like that. I can't really pin it down.

    Anyone have any ideas? I cleared all the caches, repaired permissions... am I going to need to repeat the erase and install?

  2. CASheridan macrumors newbie

    Sep 10, 2009
    Yeah, the same thing is happening to me, but can't figure out what to do about it.
  3. MichaelMidnight macrumors regular


    Feb 20, 2008
    Los Angeles
    Hey @CataChip, I've been having the same thing happen as well, esp. with the songs in iTunes freezing up and then playing again. But I've also had it happen system wide when I was doing things, with said things not being too powerful namely web surfing. And now I'm also getting browser problems on all sites with flash.

    Any insights would vastly help since I'm considering going back to Leopard!

    Concerning the browsers and flash: after updating to the newest flash, effects of the upgrade occurred only AFTER I restarted my system. Dunno if this has any bearing on the iTunes affair...
  4. catachip thread starter macrumors regular


    Jun 7, 2007
    Vancouver, British Columbia
    Hmm... yeah, not sure what is going on. I do notice that my processor usage jumps up to crazy levels (80%+) and the fans go crazy much more often with Snow Leopard (particularly flash pages). But, I'm not sure what it causing this total system stall.

    I hate that beach ball!
  5. fishnix macrumors newbie

    Sep 22, 2009
    same problem here :mad:

    EDIT: forgot to mention, I have a mid-2009 2.8Ghz MBP (8GB capable)
  6. Catfish_Man macrumors 68030


    Sep 13, 2001
    Portland, OR
    Keep Activity Monitor open and find out which application(s) are using all that CPU. That should allow for more targeted investigation of what's going wrong.
  7. Pring macrumors 6502

    Sep 17, 2003
    I'm having the same problem. Have been watching iStat Menu to see what's taking up the CPU when it beachballs but it seems to show that nothing is pegging to 100%, it just beachballs. Will keep investigating.
  8. DoFoT9 macrumors P6


    Jun 11, 2007
    memory dumps?


    maybe they changed something in SL.
  9. SchneiderMan macrumors G3


    May 25, 2008
    im always getting a beachball after the upgrade, sometime it will hold forever..
  10. Pring macrumors 6502

    Sep 17, 2003
    I appear to have fixed this problem for me. It was one of three things that did it

    * Removing GearsManager from the /Library/InputManagers/
    * Removing Gears.plugin from /Library/InternetPlugins
    * Turning off 'Use secure virtual memory' in System Preferences: Security: General
  11. omegahack macrumors newbie

    Sep 25, 2009
    I am having the same issues as well.

    I have tried all the above suggestions.
  12. Catfish_Man macrumors 68030


    Sep 13, 2001
    Portland, OR
    What happened when you tried my suggestion? Any useful information?
  13. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem


    Feb 19, 2005
    Really, your only way to tell is activity monitor. You need to see what's tasking your cpu.
  14. omegahack macrumors newbie

    Sep 25, 2009
    There is nothing showing up on the activity monitor and when I tried your suggestions the two files didn't exist and the secure memory did nothing, hence why I am having the same problem.

    It typically happens when I am extracting files or watching video.
  15. Amarq09 macrumors newbie

    Sep 2, 2009
    I'm getting this beach balls as well. Bringing up activity monitor usually shows nothing unusual CPU or RAM wise, but rather a correlation between beach balls and high disk activity. I'm not sure what disk activity is actually tracking specifically so I'm a bit lost. Is it something wrong with my hard drive?
  16. mac2x macrumors 65816

    Sep 19, 2009
    Something similar happened to me under Leopard a few months after I got my machine. the machine became extremely slow and beachballed for 15 seconds or longer on anything and everything. I finally shut down and then when I went to reboot, it wouldn't even respond to the power button. Then I noticed that the green light on the Magsafe connector wasn't lit even though it was plugged in. Furthermore, the battery indicator wasn't working. Obviously the battery wasn't being recognized. I did an power manager reset as per Apple's instructions (should be in the user manual) and I've never had a problem since.
  17. chinny4290 macrumors newbie

    Sep 22, 2009
    I have to chime in an add to the system hang experience.

    I get the BBOD or Beach Ball Of Death a couple times a day and it hangs for about 10-15 seconds.

    Just a little background, I originally bought mine in early August with Leopard on it and it was flawless. No 10-15 second BBODs but it got stolen in less than 3 weeks. I bought a new one and the second I booted up I installed Snow Leopard.

    Since then I also have Bootcamp set up with Win7. Win7 doesn't have system hang like SL does.

    I can't figure it out. It happens when I'm just forum blogging on FireFox or AIM chatting, or listening to music or just doing email or listening to music. I could be doing all at once and/or one at a time and the story remains the same.
  18. Morod macrumors 68000


    Jan 1, 2008
    On The Nickel, over there....
  19. djinn macrumors 68000


    Oct 4, 2003
    I was having the same problems. Last night watching a DVD it gave me the beach ball. I finally said F'it and installed leopard. I'll wait for some updates before going back.
  20. J71 macrumors member


    Jul 19, 2008
    I have been having similar problems on my iMac; beachballs, Firefox not loading, consistent network connection issues to my wife's win7 PC. I had none of this on Leopard so I reverted back to 10.5.8 last night and I may wait for 10.6.2 or .3 before trying it again.

    Ironically SL is running well on my Macbook, so far, but I admit I tend to think of my MB as an expensive netbook. :p
  21. Amarq09 macrumors newbie

    Sep 2, 2009
    Reading the Apple support forums I came across this as a possible fix. I've just tried it so I'm not sure if it's solved anything, but so far so good.

    I purchased Snow Leopard Cache Cleaner and have run that multiple times, and while it helps, the issues soon return after a day or so.

    Hopefully this fix is permanent.
  22. fishnix macrumors newbie

    Sep 22, 2009
    I've tried the "boot up in safe mode" fix and it did not work. I've checked my permissions and my disk, no dice. There is *nothing* in activity monitor when this happens and it happens at seemingly random times. I use my mac at work, and it happens while doing anything from chatting with adium to browsing with firefox or editing excel. I *usually* have a windows VM open, but not always. I've tail -f'd most of the logs in /var/log and nothing is logged during these episodes. I *do* use secure virtual memory, so I just turned that off (one thing at a time) and we'll see how that goes....

    BTW. I have a MBP that I recently purchaced (15", 2.8, 320GB 7200rpm, 4GB). It shipped with Snow Leopard, so atleast for me, this is not an upgrade issue.
  23. macswitcha2 macrumors 65816

    Oct 18, 2008
    what web browser are you using? Empty out your web browser?
  24. tongteh macrumors 6502

    Aug 16, 2008
    i had the same issue, called apple care and they told me it could be a harddisc defect. Sent my macbook in for service and proved that it was indeed a harddisc defect.. they got it fixed now.. :D
  25. Maccleduff macrumors regular

    Jun 26, 2007
    My experience was this: my Macbook Pro would beachball everytime I opened an application or used spotlight. The whole machine would lockup randomly, and nothing in Activity Monitor suggested anything was the culprit.

    Tried repairing permission, repair disc using Disk Utility from SnowLeopard disc. Tried resetting PRAM. After a number of restarts, it eventually went to a blue desktop with menubar and the fonts on the Time/date and menus were different.

    In the end I reinstalled Snow Leopard using the disc and everythings back to normal, all apps and documents are as before. Which is good.

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