Is X inherently unstable?

Posted:
in macOS edited January 2014
Hi,



about a year ago I finally took the plunge and installed Jaguar. I have :



Dual 450 G4 576MB/30GB/ATI rage 128/zip/dvd rom



The software I use is office X, safari, photoshop 7, iapps, mail



When I first installed it it was a joy - everything ran superbly and I frankly felt like a fool for dissing it! (although I still think its a bit geeky )



All I have changed since the original install is to add a few system updates and security updates.



Over the course of the year I have found that my system has progressively got slower, less responsive, prone to errors and the odd hang.



Applications now take twice as many bounces in the dock to launch. selecting 40 files in a finder window now gives me the beach ball and a wait of up to 2 minutes.

mail sporadically tell me it cannot connect to server or that it cannot get me my mail.

Office apps suddenly quit and disappear for no reason.

Inserting a music cd (original) launches iTunes. Clicking on play causes iTunes to hang wth the beach ball.

I've had 3 kps in the last month

and safari . . .

Safari often quits and disappears for no reason.

when I'm using safari the GUI doesn't function properly. for example say I type in apples web site and hit return. the spinning icon spins and the blue bar starts to fill up. suddenly the spinning icon stops and the blue bar is now white yet the page is blank. If i leave the page alone for around 5 -10 minutes suddenly it appears as if it had just loaded!!



I pride myself on a clean system and not tinkering with the machine, so how come it had gradually become so temperamental? I've fscked, repaired permissions, run disk warrior on the drive (which reports no probs).



Is X just built that way? does this mean that mac user will have to get used to resaing their hard drives and starting again every year or so?

«13

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 46
    jambojambo Posts: 3,036member
    User error.



    Move along, nothing to see here...
  • Reply 2 of 46
    PEBKAC!! PEBKAC!! PEBKAC!!
  • Reply 3 of 46
    576 Megs of RAM is an odd number, I assume you have added some extra. Where was it from? How much did it cost? Cheap RAM causes more problems than you would believe.



    Also, I have NEVER used a disk warrior like program under any version of MacOS X (I have been using X since the first public beta, not even a classic user) and I find that the system keeps itself in reasonable order. I fix permissions now and again, but only after I verify them first and decide that the OS is going to make the right changes. For this you need to know how the Unix/Linux/BSD file systems work.



    Have you actually tried to find the probelm. Using process viewer to see what your system is actually doing when you launch applications?



    Finally, YES, sometimes files do get corrupted. This is a property of the way hard disks store data. There are thousands of ways that the magnetic information on your HD can be changed by external sources. If you don't already, keep your mobile at least 2 feet away from the computer for a start.
  • Reply 4 of 46
    spookyspooky Posts: 504member
    Hi Gargoyle,



    thanx for your reply. The ram was added ages ago when I had 9 running on this machine and all the ram comes from crucial (1x256, 2 x 128, 1x 64)



    I only used diskwarrior to see if it found any probs, since it didn't find anything wrong obviously I did not take any action. I've tried to see what's happening in the process viewer but as a non unix person I have no idea what aynthing in that list is - although I can hazard a guess at a couple of things by parts of their name.



    Today for example, safari has suddenly quit 4 times since this morning, mail.app still won't let me get my mail (although I can go to my isp and get it fine via a web interface). It took 4 minutes for my mac to get past the grey screen when I turned it on, apple system profiler has just suddenly quit on me while "gathering . ."



    Is this normal?



    Brad and jambo, I have no idea what your posts mean and I get the feeling that I don't want to.
  • Reply 5 of 46
    aslan^aslan^ Posts: 599member
    If you were running OS 9 and 10.1 previously and "upgraded" to 10.2 this might be the cause of your problems.



    When I upgraded from 10.1.5 to 10.3 I noticed a lot of strange errors in my console. I cant remember what they were, but the symptoms were nowhere near as bad as yours.



    So I'm willing to bet if you backup all your important stuff and do a fresh install of Jaguar then you will see your problems go away. If they dont then its quite likely hardware related, there was a thread here a couple of months ago about testing for bad ram.. there are some applications out there that will do this.



    I would suggest a fresh install anyway... I think every two years is a good number for OS X, sure beats the hell out of some windows boxes that need to be freshened up every six months !
  • Reply 6 of 46
    mr. memr. me Posts: 3,219member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by spooky

    Hi,



    about a year ago I finally took the plunge and installed Jaguar. I have :



    Dual 450 G4 576MB/30GB/ATI rage 128/zip/dvd rom



    The software I use is office X, safari, photoshop 7, iapps, mail



    When I first installed it it was a joy - everything ran superbly and I frankly felt like a fool for dissing it! (although I still think its a bit geeky )



    All I have changed since the original install is to add a few system updates and security updates.



    Over the course of the year I have found that my system has progressively got slower, less responsive, prone to errors and the odd hang.



    Applications now take twice as many bounces in the dock to launch. selecting 40 files in a finder window now gives me the beach ball and a wait of up to 2 minutes.

    mail sporadically tell me it cannot connect to server or that it cannot get me my mail.

    Office apps suddenly quit and disappear for no reason.

    Inserting a music cd (original) launches iTunes. Clicking on play causes iTunes to hang wth the beach ball.

    I've had 3 kps in the last month

    and safari . . .

    Safari often quits and disappears for no reason.

    when I'm using safari the GUI doesn't function properly. for example say I type in apples web site and hit return. the spinning icon spins and the blue bar starts to fill up. suddenly the spinning icon stops and the blue bar is now white yet the page is blank. If i leave the page alone for around 5 -10 minutes suddenly it appears as if it had just loaded!!



    I pride myself on a clean system and not tinkering with the machine, so how come it had gradually become so temperamental? I've fscked, repaired permissions, run disk warrior on the drive (which reports no probs).



    Is X just built that way? does this mean that mac user will have to get used to resaing their hard drives and starting again every year or so?





    Download MacJanitor and run it.
  • Reply 7 of 46
    kcmackcmac Posts: 1,051member
    http://www.thexlab.com/faqs/repairprocess.html



    That may help.



    OS X has always been stable and responsive for me. In fact, with each upgrade it gets faster. Your post sounds like what happens to my work PC.
  • Reply 8 of 46
    scottscott Posts: 7,431member
    For me OS X has been stable accross three different machines, one G3, one iBook G3 and 12" powerbook.





    Safari crashes all the time. So at the very least subtract that from your trouble shooting because Safari has problems all it's own.
  • Reply 9 of 46
    spookyspooky Posts: 504member
    thanx guys,



    i'll try a few of your suggestions out
  • Reply 10 of 46
    piotpiot Posts: 1,346member
    Are you the same Spooky that spent about 12 months posting complaints about the lack of G5 processor from Apple? Not only that but when it did arrive it probably would not be fast enough for your 'needs'



    BTW. Have you bought one yet?



    Are you the same Spooky that, at around about the same time, predicted that Apple would be out of business sometime in 2004?



    Are you the same Spooky that has, since it's inception, been consistently complaining that OSX is not as good as OS9?



    Are you the same Spooky that also predicted that Adobe would cease producing Photoshop for Mac anytime in the next few months? (Despite Mac users accounting for 30% of sales!)



    Surely by now you should have migrated over to the Windows platform.



    Just curious if you don't really have your finger on the pulse or perhaps you ARE Rob Enderle..........or indeed both!
  • Reply 11 of 46
    ipeonipeon Posts: 1,122member
    er...



    Application/Utilities/Disk Utility



    Disk Utility



    Disk Utility



    Fix your permissions man.
  • Reply 12 of 46
    jwri004jwri004 Posts: 626member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by spooky



    I pride myself on a clean system and not tinkering with the machine, so how come it had gradually become so temperamental? I've fscked, repaired permissions, run disk warrior on the drive (which reports no probs).





    Ipeon,



    Sounds like he has already tried that



    Though taking the time to change the font size is nice
  • Reply 13 of 46
    Sorry to here about your trouble. OS X has been very stable and pretty much bug free since I started using it 2 years ago.



    Quote:

    Originally posted by spooky

    Brad and jambo, I have no idea what your posts mean and I get the feeling that I don't want to.



    Well, the only times I've had "serious" problems with the OS, it's usually been because of something I did and probably shouldn't have and that is what they are suggesting (PEBKAC=Problem Exists Between Keyboard And Chair)



    ...Oh wait... I just had a thought. How full is your hard drive (the drive OS X is installed on, if you have more than one) I let my HD get really full once (only a couple hundred megs open) and things started getting very strange. The only symptom I remember was that none of my old mail showed up in Mail. But lots of other stuff started getting weird too. For some reason, OS X doesn't like it when your HD gets full. If you've got less than a gig of free space on your main HD that could be your problem. When I had the trouble, I just moved stuff over to my external drive and everything went back to normal.
  • Reply 14 of 46
    spookyspooky Posts: 504member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by piot

    Are you the same Spooky that spent about 12 months posting complaints about the lack of G5 processor from Apple? Not only that but when it did arrive it probably would not be fast enough for your 'needs'



    BTW. Have you bought one yet?



    Are you the same Spooky that, at around about the same time, predicted that Apple would be out of business sometime in 2004?



    Are you the same Spooky that has, since it's inception, been consistently complaining that OSX is not as good as OS9?



    Are you the same Spooky that also predicted that Adobe would cease producing Photoshop for Mac anytime in the next few months? (Despite Mac users accounting for 30% of sales!)



    Surely by now you should have migrated over to the Windows platform.



    Just curious if you don't really have your finger on the pulse or perhaps you ARE Rob Enderle..........or indeed both!




    yep, that's me . . .
  • Reply 15 of 46
    You need to run some maintenance scripts. Several applications are available that automate the process such as Mac Janitor and TinkerTool System.



    At the very least, though, you need to repair permissions with Disk Utility.



    Don't blame your problems on OS X....even a Rolls Royce needs maintenance.
  • Reply 16 of 46
    spookyspooky Posts: 504member
    Hi Guys,



    I've tried a number of things people have mentioned here.



    Disk Utility. I've repaired permissions several times (including via the jaguar CD) - although I have to say that I tend to fix permissions weekly anyway - even though I don't really know what it does!



    I downloaded macjanitor and cacheout and ran them both. After a restart (cache out recommends this), my G4 started to get weird on a new level. If I connected to the internet (dial up) the amount of time I'm online is normally displayed on the menubar. Now it just sits at 00:00:00 - no matter how long I stay on - although I keep getting disconnected every 15 minutes!

    the dock is set to appear when I move to the bottom of the screen - this is no longer happening - even though its set to do so in system prefs!

    Itunes and safari are still playing up as before although weirdly when I clicked on itunes it came up with the same screen you get when you first install itunes - the one which asks you if itunes should find your mp3s, connect to the net etc!!



    Michael Wilkie, please understand I am not seeking to blame X but to find out if this is a characteristic of the way x is built. I would understand the problems I have if was the kind of person who tinkers with his machine but I am not. It just seems that over time the system becomes slower, less responsive and prone to erratic behaviour. I will also admit to still being an X novice so if there is something stupid that I am doing (or not doing!) then please by all means let me know.
  • Reply 17 of 46
    kickahakickaha Posts: 8,760member
    It is not characteristic of 'the way X is built'.



    You have something wrong, and it sounds like preferences are being lost.



    How much free disk space do you have? Virtual memory relies on there being enough free space for memory management of swap files. I found out the hard way that if you run out of 'enough' free disk space, that you can end up in a situation where the applications don't have enough room to write out their preferences files on quitting. Ie, you continually lose your preferences. All *SORTS* of weird things can happen in that case.



    It's a rare situation, normally, and I only ran into it because I had a) not rebooted or logged out in a couple of months on my laptop, b) had a rogue app that was slowly consuming memory via a leak, c) wasn't really keeping an eye on my disk usage, since it never occurred to me.
  • Reply 18 of 46
    spookyspooky Posts: 504member
    Hi Kickaha,



    I currently have 19.33GB free (on a 27Gb HD) according to the finder. as far as I can remember I have never had less than 19GB free



    is this enough or should I get a bigger HD?
  • Reply 19 of 46
    kickahakickaha Posts: 8,760member
    That should be fine, (more than!) if that's your boot HD.



    By 'low disk space', I mean under 500MB.



    Hurm. Will ponder.
  • Reply 20 of 46
    jambojambo Posts: 3,036member
    spooky, try an Archive and Install (remember to preserve User and Network settings), this could help.
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