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OS X crashes

Posted on 2006-06-23
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Last Modified: 2010-04-14
I have been getting frequent crashes when I use a program called 'Pro Tools'. I am suspecting (though I am not sure) that I am having problems with my RAM.

How can I check my RAM for errors?

Is there any other hardware problem that might cause this?




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Question by:marcoma
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9 Comments
 
LVL 9

Expert Comment

by:ParadiseITS
ID: 16972030
First, sure there are other things that could cause Pro Tools to crash.. it's a heavy duty app!  You could have other hardware issues (with your audio devices for instance), you could be low in disk space -- check that first!  Is there any consistency to when the crashes happen?  Are you mixing, recording, saving, loading a file etc....  this is very important, if you can find a common thread it is much easier to unravel this mystery!


Also, you should do a full hardware scan... There are two roads you can go down for testing your hardware, your Mac shipped with a diagnostic CD.  The first thing I would do is get that CD out, pop it in your Mac, reboot holding down the C key to boot from the CD and run a full diag on it...

The best hardware diag tool out there is Tech Tool Pro, you can find out more about it here: http://www.micromat.com/, it is hands down the #1 hardware tool for the Mac!

Hope this helps!
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Author Comment

by:marcoma
ID: 16974325
Crashes nearly always happen when I'm doing multiple crossfades, and I mean a lot across 10 audio tracks of recorded live drums. But, they also happen at random whuile I am editing audio, and somtimes just when I am playing back the session. I'm suspecting it might be while Pro Tools is saving a backup copy that the crash happens.

Strangely enough though my computer sometimes crashes out of the blue even when I am not using Pro Tools. I'm suspecting RAM because up until I put in an extra 2gig of RAM I never noticed any problems. I will try using Tech Tool Pro and see what happens.

Thanks
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Accepted Solution

by:
GrnPhoenix earned 200 total points
ID: 16997176
If it's an older G4 it will CRASH if it has more than 1.5 gig of Ram installed. If so the best Ram formation is from (Back to front)small to large 128, 256, 512, 512 = 1.408 gig

650 mhz and down!

If it's not one of the Older models you can check to see if the memory is actually being picked up by the machine Under the Apple Menu>About this Mac>More Info>Pick an Area like RAM to see whats there.

Also there is a program (opensource Free/Donation)
Called "Menu Meters" that will check your overall Machine Hardware

http://www.freesmug.org/review/menumeters

Happy computing!
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LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:NICK_LITTLE
ID: 16999293
Hi,

If you want to test your computer's memory try Memtest:

http://www.memtestosx.org/

Good luck!
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LVL 3

Expert Comment

by:VMSZealot
ID: 17008771
There are many utilities that you can use to diagnose faults with your Mac.  The easiest to locate, though, is probably the diagnostics CD that came with your Mac. If your Mac OS came on a DVD, this will be on a separate bootable partition of the Install DVD.   Either way, insert the disk and hold down the option key when rebooting or starting the Mac. Select the boot partition that you require (diagnostics) and run all the tests.

Another alternative is to use one of the commercially available diagnostics packages such as TechTool.  If the program you choose also checks for disk problems, be sure that you have the correct version for your version of Mac OS before you allow it to verify the disk - if you don't, you could really snarf things up.

The other thing is, does OS X crash - or is it just ProTools.  If it's just ProTools, make sure that you have all the latest updates installed - and try to replicate the problem on another Mac.  Don't go replacing your memory just yet though, I wouldn't suspect a memory problem unless you get a Kernel Panic (greyed screen, 'Reboot' in multiple languages).

Good luck!
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Author Comment

by:marcoma
ID: 17026206
I do actually get the greyed screen with 'Reboot' in multiple languages occurring sometimes, though most of the crashes are with ProTools.
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LVL 3

Expert Comment

by:VMSZealot
ID: 17029698
It's a nuisance, I know, but I think the first thing I'd try now is backing everything up (assuming that it isn't already of course - it should be of course, but I've just cancelled my daily backup because I can't be bothered to find the backup hard disk!).  Next reformat the hard disk and reinstall Mac OS X and Pro Tools (and all the latest updates, of course).  Don't reinstall anything else yet!  Now use Pro Tools and if it seems stable, then reinstall other apps one by one to see if any cause Pro Tools to start acting up.  Once Pro Tools starts acting up, you've found the culprit.  It may be that the problem goes away and doesn't come back - which would suggest that something in your previous install was corrupt.

If Pro Tools starts playing up immediately, suspect RAM - remove your RAM and plug the chips back in one by one (starting up and trying out your Mac after each addition) to try and find the faulty memory.
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Expert Comment

by:zpeidar
ID: 17055358
For later use, that gray screen is known as a Kernel Panic.
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