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Multiple, repeating kernel panics

by BeatleMegaFan / November 12, 2009 9:40 AM PST

My iMac G4 has been throwing a fit over the past couple of days. Yesterday, programs crashed for seemingly no reason, and I only use Safari with iTunes and iChat running the background on this particular Mac. I've been getting many kernel panics now since before then. All of the issues started just a couple of days ago.

Any simple remedies I should try? I haven't dealt with this in awhile. I'm going to run Disk Utility and whatnot once I can turn it on without crashing, but I feel like there are some preference files I should look at somewhere that I just can't put my finger on... Thoughts?

I'd prefer not to wipe it, but then again, if I have to, I would end up installing Tiger back onto it, since Leopard certainly stresses the hardware for some tasks. Surprisingly, it works quite well under Leopard, except for this instance. Ah decisions, decisions. Recommendations?


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by BeatleMegaFan / November 12, 2009 11:05 AM PST

I was repairing some disk permissions and of course, a kernel panic occurred. That does not bode well at all.


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Before wiping this machine,
by mrmacfixit Forum moderator / November 12, 2009 10:40 PM PST
In reply to: Great...

try an Archive and install of the system.

Been known to work wonders


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I'd rather not wipe it down
by BeatleMegaFan / November 13, 2009 1:28 PM PST

But yet, it received yet another kernel panic just moments ago, and it had been running fine for almost 2 hours, although channeling audio to my speakers isn't such a huge task to deal with. I would like to try to save it first, should it allow me to repair permissions at all... if not, that'll add just another thing to my list of things to do tomorrow. Sad


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RE: I'd rather not wipe it down
by chockyII / November 17, 2009 6:22 AM PST

Often kernel panics are due to hardware issues of which bad RAM is a prime candidate.

The G4 iMac has two RAM slots. One is user replaceable while the other requires a bit more expertise (you'll have to apply thermal grease).

Try booting the machine from an external FireWire drive that has a clean OS installed on it. If you still experience kernel panics you can pretty much rule out the internal drive and OS and focus on hardware.

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I know...
by BeatleMegaFan / November 18, 2009 3:05 PM PST

I added 1GB of RAM to it awhile back. 1.25GB total. The other stick hasn't been touched and System Profiler reports both modules are working. You never know though.

There were a bunch of permissions problems in Disk Utility... many were simple preference lists that shouldn't affect the overall system. If I had space on my backup FireWire drive, I'd give that a go, but I don't know if I have the capacity or time to try an external install. Plus, the DVD drive is still jammed, although I've been trying to free up time to take the drive apart. After observing it for hours, I've noticed that the gears turn, and then stop, so a motor must have either fallen off a track or just broke. It seems I never get anything done when it comes to this iMac. It's ready for disassembly, and I keep meaning to look at it over the weekends, but things have been really busy. Thanksgiving is next week so maybe I'll get a chance then. Will experiment more.


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