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Chris Searle

Misbehaving Mac

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I have a MB pro - on which I have way too much installed :) At various times I've tried various customizing software, program extenders etc. I'm trying to put off reinstalling the box until Leopard gets here - but - this is getting hard to work with.

 

Two main issues:

 

1) Some apps don't start, some crash constantly. All that get far enough to leave a crash report have this in common:

 

Exception: EXC_BAD_ACCESS (0x0001)

Codes: KERN_INVALID_ADDRESS (0x0001) at 0xb0425dd0

 

(Note - the address changes).

 

2) Now - this one is an oddity. Sometimes - the machine will start OK - but - pressing an arrow key on the keyboard hangs the currently focused app. You have to force quit. Seems to affect Mail.app and iTerm.app the most - but occasionally others. The only way to fix this seems to be to run a full applejack after a single user boot and clear out all caches etc. If the machine at any point fails to shutdown (once in every 5 or 6 boots) and you have to power cycle it then this is guaranteed to happen on the next boot.

 

Does anyone have any clues on what could be causing either of these two?

 

Oh - note - happens to all users - it's system wide.

 

If I do have to reinstall - I can easily put a clean OSX in, install the missing apps etc. But - any good advice on how to make sure you don't lose personal data ? I know I can backup my Library directory - but - I'm kind of hoping that at reinstall this should be slimmed down a lot (loads of stuff there that I don't need). I'm thinking that I need to make sure I keep mail, keyring, etc. Any pointers to best practice appreciated.

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Wow, you really made my part much easier by doing all of the fact finding yourself. Thanks! No doubt there is some remnant of one of those things you installed causing problems. While reinstalling the OS would ensure that you clean things up you may be able to do some of the work manually. If you can think of the names of any of those apps, consult Spotlight and see if it comes up with anything. After thatt, look through both of the Library folders and their respective Application Support folders and delete anything in there supporting an app that you no longer have. I don't know what AppleJack does specifically since I don't use it, but run all of the cleanup things it lets you as well as all of the cleanup scripts provided by any other tool you may have, such as OnyX. Just generally clean up your machine, anything else you can think of to delete is worth asking about here or elsewhere to see if it would be safe. Good luck.

 

-Tom

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Yes - I know its vague. That's pretty much the issue - if I knew more about what apps it could be (as in remember what I installed when) then I'd have a better clue as to where to look.

 

This machine gets used as my home box (net/mail), photography (aperture etc) and as a development machine for work. I've had all sorts on (and taken off again) since I got it. Including app enhancers, beta versions of development environments, the lot.

 

I guess what I was hoping was that there was some info as to what areas of the system could cause this kind of issue. Particularly the arrow keys locking apps - that has to be at either the OS/windowing level or in a common library - since it isn't app specific.

 

Really just hoping that someone would recognize the symptoms I guess :)

Edited by Chris Searle

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