News Archive for Wednesday Nov. 25, 2009     Goto Current News Page

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More Tests on Mac Pro/Pioneer BDR-205 disappearing drive issue
More on this subject from yesterday's post. (Updated - see below for follow-up to earlier post from affected owner after disabling sleep. Also see Dec 21st news page for another reader's workaround of using an applescript to prevent to drive from going to sleep.)

"Re: Pioneer BDR-205
Duplicated in ONE Mac Pro. However the other 4 we have are perfect with that same drive. Obviously it's not an optical drive issue... It's a Mac Pro issue.
(I'm sure Jamie checked that after the earlier comments (and from owners not seeing the problem) but wrote to ask if the machine showing the problem had ES set to not allow system/drive sleep. After first he replied "energy saver was disabled", but later wrote it wasn't on the one machine that had a problem.-Mike)
Energy saver is the problem, confirmed. I should have not emailed you till full testing was complete... I did mention energy saver and spindown hard drives to him, but he did not do it right.
We're going to recommend anyone seeing these issues exchange for an LG.

Testing notes:
The only machine I could reproduce the issue on was Chris's 2.93 Quad Core - Single Processor, the drive dismounted after about 22 minutes.
Tested all other in house MP's without issue these include:
2.93 Quad Core Dual CPU - Beth
2.66 Quad Core Single CPU - Stephanie
2.66 Quad Core Single CPU - RMA/Testing
2.26 Quad Core Dual CPU - RMA/Testing

All machines have the ICH10 SATA controller and MP41.0081.B03 Boot Rom Version. I will continue to do some research on this issue, wanted to get you my data so far.
Thanks, Jamie
Product Manager & New Product Development
Other World Computing, Inc.
http://www.macsales.com"

(Earlier post follows - updated tonight with follow-up after disabling Energy Saver System/Drive Sleep)
Another reply to yesterday's post on the subject. Log messages look like they're related to my first guess - drive going to sleep basically and not waking - suggested he try disabling ES sleep.

"I am having the same problems with the BDR-205 and my Mac Pro. (drive disappearing/not usable after appx 30 min)
Hardware Overview:

Model Name: Mac Pro
Model Identifier: MacPro4,1
Processor Name: Quad-Core Intel Xeon
Processor Speed: 2.66 GHz (Single CPU)
Memory: 7 GB
Boot ROM Version: MP41.0081.B03
SMC Version (system): 1.39f5
SMC Version (processor tray): 1.39f5

I just received my second drive from OWC today and the same thing happened, after about a half hour it "disappeared". I have uninstalled Parallels 4.0 to see if that is the problem.

(he later wrote with answers to questions I had)
Running OS X 10.6.2, No Disc in Drive. BDR-205 is a 2nd drive, although I have tried it in the top slot as the primary and the same problem happens. (Energy Saver set to allow sleep.)
Thought you might be interested in the console log from the last time the drive disappeared. (I'd asked the other reader with this problem for that info yesterday.-Mike) I guess it wasn't parallels 4.0. I have now set the computer to "never sleep" to see if that helps.
(My first guess was this is a drive sleep issue (and your log entries below appear to confirm that). I'd hoped disabling Sleep would help (other owners w/o this problem had sleep disabled too) - it has in the past when this same issue came up many years ago (still noted in the FAQ here) - although ES settings were not always a fix in the past (FAQ included other tips - terminal commands, nospindown script, etc..) I also suggested resetting the SMC as and then verify the ES settings after a cold start.-Mike)
(Here's a clip from his log messages)
11/25/09 1:15:08 PM loginwindow[49] in pam_sm_authenticate(): Failed to determine Kerberos principal name.
11/25/09 1:16:38 PM kernel SerialATAPI device reconfiguration did not complete successfully. (failedCommandInfo = 0x1)
11/25/09 1:16:53 PM kernel IOSCSIPeripheralDeviceType05::setPowerState(0xbd1d100, 1 -> 4) timed out after 100204 ms
11/25/09 1:17:53 PM kernel SerialATAPI device reconfiguration did not complete successfully. (failedCommandInfo = 0x1)
11/25/09 1:19:08 PM kernel SerialATAPI device reconfiguration did not complete successfully. (failedCommandInfo = 0x1)
11/25/09 1:19:56 PM com.apple.WebKit.PluginAgent[422] Debugger() was called!
11/25/09 1:20:23 PM kernel SerialATAPI device reconfiguration did not complete successfully. (failedCommandInfo = 0x1)
11/25/09 1:20:32 PM com.apple.WebKit.PluginAgent[422] Debugger() was called!
11/25/09 1:21:38 PM kernel SerialATAPI device reconfiguration did not complete successfully. (failedCommandInfo = 0x1)
11/25/09 1:22:53 PM kernel SerialATAPI device reconfiguration did not complete successfully. (failedCommandInfo = 0x1)
11/25/09 1:22:53 PM kernel SerialATAPI Terminating due to unrecoverable Reset error - drive has stopped responding. (resetType = 0x0, newPowerState = 0x1, failedCommandInfo = 0x1)

(His later mail after testing with ES sleep disabled follows)
Mike, After turning the "computer sleep" to never, I have been running for about 4 hours without the problem happening. Too early to say we have isolated the problem but it is encouraging. Is it bad to keep the computer from sleeping or would this be an acceptable long-term work around?
-Mark"

Personally I've always run my Macs with ES set to never allow system or drive sleep (I do set display to turn off after 5min of idle time - saves backlight life, etc.). I've always preferred to manually sleep (via menu command) when desired rather than using ES settings. I've done that for over a decade with all my macs.
FYI - On Friday morning Mark sent an update:

" I thought I would give you an update. I have been running for about a day and a half without seeing a recurrence of the problem since setting the computer to never sleep. Interestingly, I put the computer to sleep manually last night and the following items appeared in the log (on wake):
(to save space, I'm listing only the related message from his log)

11/27/09 12:44:05 AM   kernel   SerialATAPI device reconfiguration did not complete successfully. (failedCommandInfo = 0x1)

Although when I looked at the log I was concerned about the Serial ATAPI entry, the drive did not disappear and can still be accessed this morning. I am trying to decide if I should swap the Pioneer for the LG. Thanks again for all you help.
-Mark"

For owners affected with this problem that bought a BDR-205 from them, OWC is offering to exchange for the LG. (Per Jamie's notes above and the first reader to report this problem has gotten his LG replacement and said it's working fine.)

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More resurrected iBook G4s (vreg solder joint repair)
I've added a couple more reports (success, at least for now) to Kevan's guide on iBook G4 Motherboard Vreg Chip Solder Joint Repair. It may not be a permanent fix (as board flex may crack them again) but it's helped several readers get their iBook's working again.
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Reader FYI on SSL LDAP problems in Snow Leopard (causing system hangs, etc.)
Late posting this (really behind on mails and up to my ears on the homefront) - due to length posted on a separate page. Follow-up from a Mac Pro owner that previously reported after installation of Snow Leopard his Mac Pro became unreliable. (System hangs requiring a power cycle and unreliable resume from sleep.)
BTW - Had a reader reply to this post he'd also seen the same problem:

"Re: LDAP/Snow Leopard/SSL
I have a similar problem with Active Directory and my MacBookPro (2.6 Ghz Core 2 Duo, 4 GB RAM) on Snow Leopard (10.6.2). Same kind of hangs, requiring using the power button to recover. Just proved it yesterday by binding to Active Directory on a 2008 Win server after several weeks of no problems when I unbound (and it returned within minutes).
-Jack"
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Apple Support/How-To/Troubleshooting Doc Updates

Topic-based page of How-To, Troubleshooting & Tips for Mac/OS X/iOS Users.

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