Weird UPS and shutdown problems

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by whwang, Nov 13, 2010.

  1. whwang macrumors regular

    Dec 18, 2009

    My UPS is this model, brand new. My Mac Pro is 5,1 with two 2.93GHz 6-cores, running the latest snow leopard.

    Today when I walked into my office, I found that my UPS is making a long beeping sound. The Mac Pro cannot be waken up by mouse and keyboard, and its power light on the front panel is off. This looked like a power failure to me and the computer did not appeared to be running.

    Then I reseted the UPS and booted up the Mac. So far so good. Just a power failure, not a big deal, right? However, there was not a power failure.

    I have another UPS whose battery is completely dead. Whenever there was a power issue, that UPS would be off. This time, that UPS ran perfectly. So I am not convinced that there was any power problem. The problem should lie between the Mac Pro and the UPS it is using.

    What's more weird is that, after I booted up the Mac Pro and looked at the system.log file, it says there was an improper shutdown. The time for the improper shutdown is when I reseted the UPS. It's not some time much earlier (in such a case, I would believe it is a power failure). The exact log is:
    Nov 14 12:33:31 localhost DirectoryService[11]: Improper shutdown detected

    So it seems the computer was still running somehow at that time, otherwise it would not know there was a shutdown. There is also a message in the power management logs saying
    * Domain: sleep
    - Message: Sleep: Platform Failure - AC
    - Time: 11/14/10 12:33:34 PM GMT+08:00
    - Signature: Platform Failure
    - UUID: 60CB8E45-A84D-4181-B69B-6B98D84910A3
    - Result: Failure

    This happened twice in the past week. The first time when it happened, there was no data link between the UPS and the Mac. The second time, the UPS was connected to the Mac with USB. The UPS only has the Mac and a WD 4TB external disk connected to it. These two device don't seem to be able to terribly overload the UPS. Plus, when this happened, I am not doing anything on the Mac. On the other hand, when I ran something intensive on the Mac last week, there were no problems at all. So this doesn't look like an overloading problem to me.

    Anyone knows what might be happening? If the Mac Pro has sleep issues, why did the UPS complain?
  2. cutterman macrumors regular

    Apr 27, 2010
    How old are the batteries in the UPS unit? They generally need to be replaced every 2-3 years and I noticed yours is an older model.

    To check the UPS run the self test. Also try putting a load on it (not your computer) and pulling the plug to see if it maintains power.
  3. philipma1957 macrumors 603


    Apr 13, 2010
    Howell, New Jersey
    plug in a few light bulbs for a test load. you will know how much watts the ups can handle. if the ups fails on 2 100 watt light bulbs it certainly can not do a mac pro.
  4. dknightd macrumors 6502

    Mar 7, 2004
    The improper shutdown was logged when you restarted the Mac, because it could not log it when it was shutdown.

    My experience has been that UPS cause as many power problems as they prevent. YMMV

    edit: p.s. read what the UPS manual says about the beep you had. Then test it.
  5. whwang thread starter macrumors regular

    Dec 18, 2009

    Thanks to everyone.

    I checked the menu. The long beep means overloading. When I tested a few more times with rebooting and waking up from sleep, the same happened occasionally. So now I am quite convinced that it is an overloading issue. It sounds strange to me. Just waking up the MacPro can overload a 1000VA UPS?

    The UPS is a new unit. It was produced in July this year and passed all the tests in APC. (There is a signature on the testing sheet.) It is an old model, but I guess APC is still making it for selling in other countries. (I am in Taiwan.)

    I had disabled sleep of the Mac Pro. I will see what happens.
  6. crazzyeddie macrumors 68030


    Dec 7, 2002
    Florida, USA
    The Mac Pro has a 1000W power supply. Your UPS almost certainly can't deliver 1000W, so it is causing it to overload. Check the spec sheet that came with your UPS to see what the peak wattage it can supply is.

    If you think this UPS should be able to power the Mac Pro based on the info you find, contact APC and see what they have to say.
  7. dissolve macrumors 6502a

    Aug 23, 2009
    I've got a 2.8 quad with one HDD, one SSD, and the 5870. It pulls about 250W on startup and around 285W on full CPU load. So it's very likely you're overloading your 12-core. 1000VA is about 600W (in the US). I'd say you are definitely reaching that.
  8. philipma1957 macrumors 603


    Apr 13, 2010
    Howell, New Jersey
  9. dissolve macrumors 6502a

    Aug 23, 2009

    That meter is awesome. Plus, it's really fun to go around finding out what everything you own is pulling from the wall :p
  10. ActionableMango macrumors G3


    Sep 21, 2010
    Those bulbs are banned. In the USA, get them before January 2012. I think in the EU it's already too late.

    USA: Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007

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