Strange Problem with Finder

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Hastings101, Sep 21, 2010.

  1. Hastings101, Sep 21, 2010
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2011
  2. Makosuke macrumors 603

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    #2
    Hmm... I've seen Finder flake out occasionally, but I've never seen window corruption like that before, which is to say that at the very least it's not a common issue.

    The fact that a reinstall doesn't help pretty solidly rules out OS install problems, and unless there's some kind of conflict between the hardware you've got an the current OS that hasn't been patched yet (presumably someone will chime in if so), it's not an OS bug, either.

    Which leaves three things I can think of:

    1) Some third party system utility or hack you've installed is doing it, and it didn't go away because you reinstalled. The only way to test this would be to remove everything that's not just an app (regular applications shouldn't do something like that) that you've installed and see if it goes away.

    2) There's something wrong with your user account that's causing Finder to flake. This seems unlikely to me, but who knows. It wouldn't have been fixed by a reinstall because (I'm assuming) you kept the old users, which would have carried any problems within with them. The test for this would be to create a clean user account and see if it happens there.

    3) You've got a hardware problem. I'd be a little surprised that it's only showing up in Finder, but then who knows. If you haven't already, try running the Hardware Test disc that came with your computer and see if it turns anything up. If not, the only thing you can do is call Apple (it's under warranty) and see if they recognize the issue or will have a hardware tech take a look at it (do you have a nearby Apple Store?).
     
  3. Hastings101 thread starter macrumors 68000

    Hastings101

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    #3
    I tried the Hardware Test and it showed everything to be ok so I guess it's not a problem with the laptop, and when I reinstalled OS X earlier I wiped everything, so I don't think it could be an application or user setting. I've also never installed any modifications or hacks. So I guess it's not a sign of a serious issue or anything then, just wish I could figure out what caused it so I could avoid it.
     
  4. Gregg2 macrumors 603

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    #4
    Please explain what you mean by "relaunch Finder".

    Anybody else: when you see that, how do you interpret it?
     
  5. Hastings101 thread starter macrumors 68000

    Hastings101

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    #5
    I'm sorry my mind totally slipped on the last post, I meant relaunching Finder, not restarting my computer :eek:

    and by relaunching finder I mean pressing the option key, right clicking on the finder icon, and clicking relaunch
     
  6. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #6
    Um.... either this:
    ScreenCap 2.PNG
    or this:
    ScreenCap 3.PNG
    or this:
    ScreenCap 4.PNG
    followed by launching Finder.
     
  7. Makosuke macrumors 603

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    #7
    Hmm... while I'm usually of the "don't worry too much about it" school, if you completely wiped the drive (and didn't restore your previous users/settings from a backup), and you haven't installed any system add-ons at all, I'm actually kind of inclined to suspect some sort of graphics card issue. And I know for a fact that those can sometimes get by the Hardware Test--I've seen systems with such severe graphic corruption you could barely read the Hardware Test screen, yet it said there was no issue.

    Question: Have you tried playing any 3D games or doing anything graphically intensive like that? Curious if there would be glitches if the graphics hardware was pushed harder.

    Maybe it's fine to ignore it, but I'd personally call Apple while it's still under warranty--better than ignoring a minor problem that turns into a major one after your warranty has expired.

    If, on the other hand, you bought AppleCare, then you've got three years to ignore it, so if you're ok with that no issue.

    And, just to be clear, it COULD, in theory, be a software glitch--might just stop happening after 10.6.5 is released or something. I'm just paranoid about things that could be hardware and are still under warranty.
     
  8. Gregg2 macrumors 603

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    #8
    Why have I never had to do that???

    To me, Finder is synonymous with starting up the computer. It's always there. I didn't realize you could relaunch it without a Restart. I never click on the Dock Icon for any reason. And I've never noticed the Quit Finder menu command either! Does it then "relaunch" automatically?
     
  9. Makosuke macrumors 603

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    #9
    As a general rule, if Finder crashes or is "relaunched" via the Dock, it will re-start automatically. If you manually quit it, however, it will stay closed until its Dock icon is clicked. (I believe, though am not bothering to test, it will also open automatically if no other apps are open, so you don't get stuck on a "dead" desktop).

    Also, I'm pretty sure the Quit menu item is not there by default; you can add it via Tinker Tool or other, similar, "hidden prefs" apps.
     
  10. Gregg2 macrumors 603

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    #10
    Um, that would be because it's not there! ...neither is the Launch Finder contextual menu choice. Now I don't feel so clueless, just ancient. After all, I still use 10.5.8, oh my!
     
  11. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #11
    To add a Quit Finder entry to the Finder menu, in Terminal type:
    defaults write com.apple.finder QuitMenuItem -bool yes​
    Then relaunch Finder.

    To access Finder's Relaunch menu item from the Dock, hold the Option key down while you right-click the Finder icon on the Dock.

    I'm on 10.5.8, as well.
     
  12. tjb1 macrumors 68000

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    #12
    You can goto terminal and just type

    killall Finder

    Also :)
     
  13. Hastings101 thread starter macrumors 68000

    Hastings101

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    #13
    I think it might be a weird software issue, if it still happens after 10.6.5 I'll probably call Apple.
     
  14. snberk103 macrumors 603

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    #14
    OP: This is not normal behaviour, and there is a problem. If you bought the system from Apple, then you are covered by AppleCare. My suggestion is the next time you see the problem don't clear it, but call AppleCare. My guess (but it's just a guess....) is that it is HW.

    This is assuming you haven't been adding "haxies" ( a term I read somewhere a few years ago when trying to figure out why my system was starting to act flakey. Basically they are little programs that 'hack' some system file to change the OS's default behaviour. Haxies are usually an 'optimizer' or 'add-on' that perhaps you added to make the system work "better."

    Once I removed all a haxies I haven't seen a single system crash. Not one. Individual programs can lock up, but I can force quit them and carry on.) In my experience OS X is nearly 100% reliable until these haxies are added. One way to test is to completely reinstall the OS and then don't install any of the haxies - just add back your productivity apps. If the system no longer acts flakey you have an answer. If it acts flakey, then call AppleCare. You've paid for it, so you might as well use it.

    If it's not SW related, then it's HW. I know you said you did a HW test, but there is also an extended HW test that can pick up problems that the regular test won't. I know this 'cause I just went through AppleCare to get my wife's Air repaired. I had a good guess of what the problem was, but AppleCare talked me through the extended HW test and confirmed my guess (we pick up the repaired Air tomorrow!)

    Anyway.... HW problems are of course covered by AppleCare (assuming you haven't dropped it or spilled something in it) but .... you may be without the computer for few days. Also, do a back up before you take it in.

    Good Luck.
     
  15. Hastings101 thread starter macrumors 68000

    Hastings101

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    #15
    I know, shame shame shame on me for bringing this back to life, but I just wanted to share what caused the problem for other Mac users that experience this and as a warning to others :) :

    Do not, ever, use a program that removes languages or architectures (PPC for example) from your system. Despite the fact that you may not need them, apparently removing them may cause Finder (and other applications) to glitch up constantly. It's not worth the extra savings in space.

    Avoid:
    Monolingual especially and any apps similar to it.

    Fix if you're having this problem:
    A reinstall will fix the problem. Not much else will.
     
  16. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #16
    I've used Monolingual for years with zero problems, and yes, I've deleted the PPC architectures. That's not what caused your Finder issues.
     
  17. Hastings101 thread starter macrumors 68000

    Hastings101

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    #17
    It is definitely what caused my Finder problems. I had the same problem occur on that Macbook Pro, my current iMac, and my Mac Mini. I used monolingual on all three of them, and after reinstalling Snow Leopard on all three, and not using the application, the problem hasn't occurred since.
     
  18. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #18
    If Monolingual was the cause of the problems, they would cause the same problems for everyone else that uses it. It must be something specific that you deleted, not just the general use of Monolingual.
     
  19. Makosuke macrumors 603

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    #19
    Not necessarily, just as a simple software update doesn't cause problems for 99.9% of the people who run it, but something occasionally does go wrong with it. I'd be skeptical if you showed me two stock Macs with the same exact OS build, one of which was hosed running Monolingual and another not, but there are a lot of other variables involved here that could have caused Monolingual to do something it shouldn't have.

    It's theoretically possible that some other problem just happened to appear to be Monolingual for the OP, or that the OP used the wrong settings in Monolingual, but if you look through the MacUpdate reviews there are dozens of happy users along with a significant number of people who said it caused severe problems for them. I don't think either group is lying, it's just that in some situations (or with some settings) these cleaner apps seem to get overzealous and clean too much. I've read plenty of threads here describing similar (or worse) issues with language/architecture cleaner apps.
     

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