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Snow Leopard sudden blue screen crash?

by peterkienle / September 28, 2009 2:17 PM PDT


I am on a brand new 3.06 GHz iMac. Installed Snow Leopard, 10.6.1. In general I don't experience any of the problems other people seem to have. But twice now my screen has turned blue while I am in the middle of something. All the open apps disappear and the Finder seems to relaunch. It only takes a few seconds. I don't have steps to reproduce it. Both times I had several apps open and had video/DVD running in the background.

Has anybody seen this?

I am a notorious file-saver which means I haven't lost much work through this but if it keeps happening I might have to go back to Leopard.



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If it happens again,
by mrmacfixit Forum moderator / September 28, 2009 9:50 PM PDT

call Apple.
This machine is under warranty and should not be doing this.

They will "probably" get you to re-install the OS, using the Archive and Install option, but tell them anyway


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Did you call it in?
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / September 28, 2009 9:51 PM PDT

New machines can have new hardware issues. I'm finding folk that don't call these failures in, they muddle on till the free support and then the warranty expire and when they say "it's done this since I got it" the tech opens up the service record and tells us there was nothing on file.

Now's your chance to get it on file.

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called it in
by peterkienle / September 28, 2009 11:36 PM PDT
In reply to: Did you call it in?

Thanks for the advice.

After the second time it happened I called them. And, yes, they tried to make me do all the things (permissions, alternate user account, etc). It's kinda pointless when my problem appears every ten days or so. At least they have a case now. And I do have AppleCare so at least I can experiment with this.

Last night when the blue screen happened I was present enough to save the chunk of Console log from that time frame. It's quite interesting as you can actually see the plot thicken up until the incident.

I have a few 'older' apps that might have been open. One is Acrobat Pro 7 which runs very sluggishly on this machine. Not that it ever screamed on my G5 but I can tell it wants a newer version.

I wonder if there might be a 64/32 bit thing there.

Anyway. I will keep looking and see if there's a pattern.


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Snow Leopard sudden blue screen crash
by ZeviBareket / October 8, 2009 12:38 AM PDT

(Recent MBP 15", OS 10.6.1) Happened to me twice last night also.

What I recall, is that I working in Word and Excel 2004: I felt
that it becomes very slow (activity monitor showed 104% for Word), and
shortly after -- a blue screen appeared, immediately followed by the login

My initial thinking is that it may have to do with how Rosetta works in Snow Leopard. In other instances, I felt the computer gets "slow and busy" in these MS applications, but it "recovered" and did not collapse into the blue screen.

Do you recall what apps you were working in when this happened? Were they apps that needed Rosetta? What do you see in the captured log?

Somehow, I'm doubting my own theory above, as a similar thing happened to my wife (iBook G4, OS 10.5) earlier that day: only that it was accompanied by a warning that read something along these lines:
"your wireless connection is not secure."

Any thoughts?


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not alone!!!
by peterkienle / October 8, 2009 1:11 AM PDT

Thanks for writing this. So far I thought I was crazy since nobody else has seen it.
I had three crashes total so far. On the last two I was present enough to copy the relevant crash report from the console. I think I need a few more incidents before I can really tell what it is. Although it has been suggested it might be a hardware thing it doesn't 'feel' like that to me. On all my incidents the blue screen appeared just like that without warning or noticeable slow-down. Within seconds the Finder restarted, no login required.

I *think* on two occasions I had Acrobat 7 Pro open (that is running pretty sluggishly).


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Definitely not alone
by DHME09 / October 8, 2009 4:21 AM PDT
In reply to: not alone!!!

I have also been getting this repeatedly when using Excel 2004. My suspicion is also that it has to do with Rosetta running in Snow Leopard. You might want to check the Console, though...I have a repeating "throttling respawn" error that might be the culprit.

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throttling respawn??
by peterkienle / October 8, 2009 4:43 AM PDT
In reply to: Definitely not alone

I don't know exactly what it means but the two incidents I recorded both show this error in a console log.

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re: throttling respawn
by DHME09 / October 8, 2009 6:28 AM PDT
In reply to: throttling respawn??

My problem is with an application (AppCleaner, ironically enough) that I uninstalled, and thought I'd totally purged from my machine (not in the LaunchAgents, LaunchDaemons folders, etc.), but my computer is evidently still looking for it. If I make any progress on fixing it, I'll let you know.

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Check this too...
by ZeviBareket / October 8, 2009 6:46 AM PDT
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Re: Check this too...
by DHME09 / October 8, 2009 9:28 AM PDT
In reply to: Check this too...

Thanks for the reference. I followed some advice in that thread and reinstalled Snow Leopard (and Rosetta) over 10.6.1. That took care of my repeating throttle respawn message and so far so good with Excel. I'll keep my fingers crossed.

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Word and Excel issues, too
by Duke3335 / November 2, 2009 12:34 AM PST

My wife and I have two different MacBook Pros. Hers is a little over a month old, and mine is about 18 months old. Hers did this about a week ago, with a few word documents open. Mine just did it while working in Excel. So I am wondering if it is a problem with these programs. Is it worthwhile to upgrade to the latest version of MS Office?

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Might be a hard drive problem
by igloo225 / October 9, 2009 4:03 PM PDT

I have the same computer but it's a year old. About a month ago it did the same things, slowing down then... blue screen.

I had noticed the the machine had been running very hot (feel yours on the top and left of centre) with various programs open. I was surprised but then figured that a fan had stopped working.

I was on the phone with an Apple tech when the computer went blue screen. I thought that was good, he could help me figure out what the problem was. He did.

What I saw was a file icon in the middle of the screen which had a question mark in it. Oh, no, says he: your hard drive has failed; hope you've got your data backed up.... Thankfully, I have an external and use time machine.

The end of the story is that the hard drive had to be replaced - I took it to an Apple certified place where they ghosted all my programs and data onto the new drive (2 days in the shop in total).

All's well now.

So: Is your data backed up?
Is your computer running hot?
Take your computer to your local Apple store and have them run a full diagnostic. Apple Care will replace the drive for free, if that is the problem.
If you do need to have the drive replaced, Apple will not ghost your data onto the new drive but an Apple certified office (Apple will give you names and locations near you) will - for a price, I paid $100.

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by jennywren1420 / October 10, 2009 2:41 AM PDT

You have Apple Care; the problem with with an Apple HD only a year old that failed through no fault of yours; and you still had to pay to have your data recovered? I've always loved my Apple computers, but this seems outrageous to me.

Anyone else feel the same way? I know that my horror doesn't help anyone with the blue screen, but I had to say something, and especially, something sympathetic.

I must say that I've been seeing a lot that disturbs me about Snow Leopard. I've contemplated buying a new computer, on and off, but now I am not so sure that I want to, until Apple gets a leash on its new pet an tames it.


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Data Recovery
by igloo225 / October 10, 2009 4:03 AM PDT
In reply to: Yikes!

The hard drive failing after just a year surprised me. The guys I took my computer to replaced, through Apple Care, the Western Digital drive with a larger Hitachi.

I have no problem with paying for the data installed on the new hard drive - in the past, in PC-land, I did it myself a couple of times. Took me quite a while to figure it out.

And I understand why Apple won't do it: imagine the law suits if something goes wrong in the install, if the data is lost, or if someone has their data stolen by some random Apple geek....

I was just glad Apple and the tech guys were easy to deal with.

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Date recovery,
by mrmacfixit Forum moderator / October 10, 2009 6:33 AM PDT
In reply to: Yikes!

has never been covered by any warranty from Apple and is certainly not covered by any Hard Drive manufacture.

An Apple Authorized Service provider, a local one, charges $120 for a diagnostic check even though the machine is covered by Apple Care or the original warranty.
He claims that Apple does not cover the cost of finding out what is wrong with the machine, only for the cost of replacing the bad part.

Only goes to show the benefit and wisdom of having a good backup regimen in place for just such an eventuality.
I have lost two 500GB drives in my iMac in a little under 18 months. Gotta love Time Machine!

The poster who had his drive replaced with a larger one from a different manufacturer, was lucky. Most ASP's will not do that under the warranty.


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OS X 10.0.6 Blue screen
by StevcoOak / November 14, 2009 11:03 PM PST

Same thing here on 2 separate systems, 17" and 14", appeared several months after installing Snow Leopard. Seems to always happen when multi apps are open and using MS Entourage. My guess is that an update from Apple is causing this issue and in the next OS update they can resolve this.

If anyone wants to openly discuss let me know and I can provide an email.

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If you do not like blue screens
by GODhack / November 14, 2009 11:08 PM PST

then remove ms crapware

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not in MS office
by gurdok / August 15, 2011 6:00 PM PDT

it happen to me like a month ago, with officce 2011 open... but today, it did it twice... i had chrome and final cut 7 open...

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MacOSX Snow Leopard MacBook Pro-blue screen faint cursor
by freedawirl / July 31, 2010 3:44 AM PDT

I am working with a MacBook Pro running OSX Snow Leopard. I have all updated software(Paralells DT 5 Win 7 Ultimate Office 2008 Mac,Adobe Suite CS5 Mac and the core Apple SW)nothing special. Regularly, I get a weird Blue Screen and sometimes black screen, with red-blue and green pixels (like starry night)This usually happens after attempting a restart, after experiencing a DVD/CD or file not opening form an access attempt. I have had to repair, reformat and reinstall the system at least 4 times now and I have only had this thing 2 months. I am very disappointed with this OS. Everything works well on the Windows7 side though. Maybe, I should have gotten a DELL instead - a $1,200.00 saving. Macs just aint what they used to be. Any help would be appreciated.

Best Regards,

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