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Lion users continuing to suffer from black-screen crashes

updated 11:45 am EDT, Fri August 5, 2011

Apple still investigating

Some OS X Lion users are continuing to encounter severe graphics-related crashes, according to reports and Apple's support forums. When affected, a person will see a Mac suddenly crash and display a black screen, or else a warning about a kernel panic. A factor in common is that some sort of graphics event is typically taking place; a crash may also happen when a computer wakes from sleep.

Many of the affected computers are said to be 2010 MacBook Pros using GeForce 330M graphics and a Core i5 or i7 CPU, but some of the impacted systems are iMacs. The trouble may lay in Lion's handling of graphics switching, which allows systems to turn on a dedicated GPU whenever extra performance is needed, or go back to an integrated CPU to save power. Forcing a Mac to use one chipset exclusively appears to solve the crashes in some cases. Disabling system and display sleep may prevent wake errors.

Apple has said it is looking into the matter, including taking in crash reports. Any fix has been weeks in the making, though, and there is no scheduled patch release date.

by MacNN Staff



    Comment buried. Show
  1. Paul Huang

    Joined: Dec 1969


    deeply-flawed UI and now this

    Stay the h*** away from this 5HIT.

  1. occupant

    Joined: Dec 1969


    comment title

    Paul, you seem tense... Is there something wrong at home? Are you feeling ok? You've been here 12 years... maybe it's time to, you know, stop doing this to yourself. Stop hurting yourself. Come on, Paul.

  1. facebook_Andreas

    Via Facebook

    Joined: Aug 2011


    Upgrade only

    I had this issue a couple time when upgrading to Lion on my 2011 iMac 27".

    I decided to backup data, and clean install Lion on the same machine.

    Never happened again.

    Just an FYI.

  1. Feathers

    Joined: Dec 1969


    nVidia again?

    I wonder is this solely a software issue or a combination of software and hardware which might, yet again, point the finger in the direction of nVidia.

  1. facebook_Collin

    Via Facebook

    Joined: Aug 2011


    Happened to me

    I have a late 2006 iMac (ATI HD 1600) that this was happening on. All I did to fix it was repair permissions on the startup disk. Hasn't happened since. Everything considered, Lion only had a couple minor annoyances such as NAS (Appletalk authentication change) and the reversed scrolling direction (takes about a week to get used to). Compared to upgrading Ubuntu, Windows or even past versions of the Mac OS, the Lion upgrade was a breeze.

  1. solefald

    Joined: Dec 1969


    no issues here

    i've upgraded 8 macs so far, including 2 mid-2010 MBP's. Not a single issue so far.

  1. facebook_Paul

    Via Facebook

    Joined: Aug 2011


    reset pram

    yeah lion corupted all my hard drive partitions and crashed. so I'm saving my money for data rescue 3 and a new 1.5 terabyte hard drive to get everything in order......what i recommend is to do a clean install and zeroing out the hard drive intended for osx lion but definitely reset the pram/nvram too.....maybey its a good time for a ssd drive too..i bought a corsair force 3 120gb in seconds

  1. ADeweyan

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Haven't seen black-screen crashes...

    ...but I have seen network/wi-fi related crashes (that appear to take down the AirPort network at the same time).

    All in all, Lion has been a disaster for me. Forget the crashes -- the biggest disasters involve the very questionable decision to force people to use features designed for (and appropriate for) very simple devices on much more powerful and complicated devices. Just give me the ability to turn all of them off and I'll be happy with Lion's snappier performance.

  1. facebook_Terrin

    Via Facebook

    Joined: Aug 2011


    Lion Rocks

    Stinks if people's Macs are crashing. However, my install went flawless. I have had zero issues. I love Launch Pad, MIssion Control, and the new gesture commands.

    For people complaining about the changes, why did you upgrade? Lion's features were covered in detail prior to the update.

  1. JuanGuapo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Three Macs upgraded.

    2011 MBP 15", 13" unibody white Macbook, 2008 iMac Aluminum....not a single issue with any of them. Hope this gets fixed for those who are having issues.

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