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Thinking of Giving Up the Ghost on my iMac. Question?
Posted by: graylocks
Date: January 12, 2022 08:21PM
Our intrepid MRF'er first posted about her randomly restarting iMac here:

Imac Randomly Freezes and Restart

Since that time I have posted about working extensively with an Apple Specialist, taken it in to an Apple store for a thorough hardware diagnostic, and had the motherboard replaced because the ethernet port was out and since it was still under Costco Concierge coverage I decided to have it fixed. I was also kind of hoping a new motherboard would miraculously fix the problem. It didn't.

I could probably make do with proactively restarting the iMac once a week as it takes about two weeks for the problem to arise. It's a 2019; just an Apple toddler. I had my last iMac almost 10 years. But my son, dang him, has said Mom, why don't you just get a new computer? and those 24" M1 iMacs sure are bright and shiny. My trade in on the iMac would be $600.

But here is my concern - since I don't know where the problem is and I would be putting my back up on a new computer wouldn't I run the risk of the new computer inheriting the same quirk. What are the odds?



"Success isn't about how much money you make. It is about the difference you make in people's lives."--Michelle Obama
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Re: Thinking of Giving Up the Ghost on my iMac. Question?
Posted by: mattkime
Date: January 12, 2022 08:26PM
Have you started from a fresh install and just copied over docs?



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Re: Thinking of Giving Up the Ghost on my iMac. Question?
Posted by: graylocks
Date: January 12, 2022 08:35PM
Quote
mattkime
Have you started from a fresh install and just copied over docs?

I've started from a fresh install a number of times and copied over as minimally as possible. What I think I asked here and never got quite clear about is that if I download and fresh install of all my apps how do the apps I have purchased know I am a registered user and grant me full access to the app. I have registration keys for very few apps.

Also, reinstalling and testing every app would be a very long, tedious process. It takes two to three weeks for the problem to emerge. That would mean installing an app and then waiting as much as three weeks to see if it causes a problem. my work flow would be dead in the water.



"Success isn't about how much money you make. It is about the difference you make in people's lives."--Michelle Obama



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/12/2022 08:35PM by graylocks.
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Re: Thinking of Giving Up the Ghost on my iMac. Question?
Posted by: Forrest
Date: January 12, 2022 08:36PM
Power problems? Do you have a P3 Killawatt that you can plug into the power outlet/computer to check voltage stability?
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Re: Thinking of Giving Up the Ghost on my iMac. Question?
Posted by: graylocks
Date: January 12, 2022 08:41PM
Quote
Forrest
Power problems? Do you have a P3 Killawatt that you can plug into the power outlet/computer to check voltage stability?

I don't have one of those but the Apple store did a deep dive on the hardware. Wouldn't they have checked the power supply?



"Success isn't about how much money you make. It is about the difference you make in people's lives."--Michelle Obama
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Re: Thinking of Giving Up the Ghost on my iMac. Question?
Posted by: Forrest
Date: January 12, 2022 10:35PM
I was thinking there may be power fluctuations at your house. Plugging the computer into a UPS will rule this out.
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Re: Thinking of Giving Up the Ghost on my iMac. Question?
Posted by: graylocks
Date: January 12, 2022 11:11PM
Quote
Forrest
I was thinking there may be power fluctuations at your house. Plugging the computer into a UPS will rule this out.

It is plugged into a UPS. Always has been.



"Success isn't about how much money you make. It is about the difference you make in people's lives."--Michelle Obama
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Re: Thinking of Giving Up the Ghost on my iMac. Question?
Posted by: AllGold
Date: January 13, 2022 12:47AM
If the problem remains across two different motherboards then it's very unlikely to be a hardware issue. What external devices do you have? If nothing other than an Apple keyboard and mouse, you will have to look at software.



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Re: Thinking of Giving Up the Ghost on my iMac. Question?
Posted by: gadje
Date: January 13, 2022 06:20AM
it could be the power supply module.

What do the logs say, anything there? if this was a software issue, there should be something in those logs.
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Re: Thinking of Giving Up the Ghost on my iMac. Question?
Posted by: Tiangou
Date: January 13, 2022 06:43AM
Intermittent problems can be difficult to diagnose.

If it's related to heat/power, you may be able to trigger it with a stress test.

Once it's reliably reproducible, the Mac can be brought back to the Apple Store where they can follow-up.

You might try looping one of these benchmarking animations overnight to see what happens.
[benchmark.unigine.com]







Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/13/2022 06:44AM by Tiangou.
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Re: Thinking of Giving Up the Ghost on my iMac. Question?
Posted by: MrNoBody
Date: January 13, 2022 08:48AM
Quote
graylocks
Quote
Forrest
I was thinking there may be power fluctuations at your house. Plugging the computer into a UPS will rule this out.
It is plugged into a UPS. Always has been.

A UPS can 'act up'. I had an APC that was causing my cMP to randomly freeze and
shut down. New battery & unit was on a 20A properly grounded outlet.
Went back to APC and they sent me a new unit, problem solved. Seems some
component within the APC switching circuitry was defective. Rare but $h!t happens.



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Re: Thinking of Giving Up the Ghost on my iMac. Question?
Posted by: bhaveshp
Date: January 13, 2022 11:20AM
From a different perspective - have you diagnosed this from the ethernet side?

1. Have you tried a different ethernet cable?
2. Presuming this plugs into either an ethernet switch or router - Have you tried connecting it to another ethernet port on the opposite side hardware?
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Re: Thinking of Giving Up the Ghost on my iMac. Question?
Posted by: graylocks
Date: January 13, 2022 12:26PM
Quote
bhaveshp
From a different perspective - have you diagnosed this from the ethernet side?

1. Have you tried a different ethernet cable?
2. Presuming this plugs into either an ethernet switch or router - Have you tried connecting it to another ethernet port on the opposite side hardware?

Ethernet port died on the iMac in 2020 so it's been out of commission for most of the long life of this problem. It was repaired December 2021 by replacing the entire motherboard.



"Success isn't about how much money you make. It is about the difference you make in people's lives."--Michelle Obama
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Re: Thinking of Giving Up the Ghost on my iMac. Question?
Posted by: A-Polly
Date: January 13, 2022 12:34PM
If it's not your UPS acting up, maybe it's just a snakebit machine and you should be choosing your new, more colorful computer! That $600 might be $200 next month... (sorry for going against the forum frugality policy, but I can't help being attracted by the shiny!).

Good luck with whatever you decide.
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Re: Thinking of Giving Up the Ghost on my iMac. Question?
Posted by: graylocks
Date: January 13, 2022 12:48PM
It's starting to sound like it's a software issue that would likely be passed on to a new Mac.

I would think it would be software that is running all the time. I am on the latest version of Big Sur. I am not a power user. I usually have open:
Chrome
Safari
Preview
Mail
Messages
Calculator
Textexpander
ClipMenu
CloudClip
1Password

I frequently open and close when done:
Moneydance
Pages
Numbers
Quicktime
Zoom
Skype

After a crash December 20 I got these weird messages when I logged back again that I had a devil of a time clearing. The following requested the password for Keychain Access to log in:
Asstantd
Comm Center
Callservicesd
iCloudnotification agent
Spotlight
CallhistorySyncHelper


I would enter my password, it would go away, and another window would pop up even ones i had just entered in. It was a vicious circle until I finally restarted. Upon restart a few reappeared but accepted the password and went away. I researched Keychain issues, searched Keychain for files concerning those words, and changed the settings to Allow without asking. I had high hopes it would solve the problem but no luck. iMac bellied up Tuesday.

One other weird thing: ever since the new motherboard Find My does not work on this computer. Yes. I've checked every single applicable setting. It is unchecked in Internet Accounts>iCloud; when it asks to Allow this mac to be used I click Allow and it goes back to an unchecked box.

If any of this points to where I should look please let me know.



"Success isn't about how much money you make. It is about the difference you make in people's lives."--Michelle Obama
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Re: Thinking of Giving Up the Ghost on my iMac. Question?
Posted by: mikebw
Date: January 13, 2022 12:53PM
Have you tried just reinstalling the OS? It won't should not mess with your user files, I mean you should have a backup just in case, but that can clear up a lot of issues at once without troubleshooting.
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Re: Thinking of Giving Up the Ghost on my iMac. Question?
Posted by: graylocks
Date: January 13, 2022 12:54PM
Quote
mikebw
Have you tried just reinstalling the OS? It won't should not mess with your user files, I mean you should have a backup just in case, but that can clear up a lot of issues at once without troubleshooting.

The OS has been reinstalled 3 different times.



"Success isn't about how much money you make. It is about the difference you make in people's lives."--Michelle Obama
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Re: Thinking of Giving Up the Ghost on my iMac. Question?
Posted by: kj
Date: January 13, 2022 05:53PM
I'm with a-polly. 600 trade in sounds really good. I'd get a new machine (and UPS) Life's too short.
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Re: Thinking of Giving Up the Ghost on my iMac. Question?
Posted by: AllGold
Date: January 13, 2022 06:08PM
Quote
graylocks
Textexpander
ClipMenu
CloudClip

I'll bet you $1 it's one of those three.



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Re: Thinking of Giving Up the Ghost on my iMac. Question?
Posted by: graylocks
Date: January 13, 2022 06:36PM
Quote
AllGold
Quote
graylocks
Textexpander
ClipMenu
CloudClip

I'll bet you $1 it's one of those three.

Can't be CloudClip, though. the issues predates by many months when I acquired it. Maybe i'll turn TE and Clip Menu off for a while. Or should I completely uninstall them?



"Success isn't about how much money you make. It is about the difference you make in people's lives."--Michelle Obama
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Re: Thinking of Giving Up the Ghost on my iMac. Question?
Posted by: RAMd®d
Date: January 13, 2022 07:37PM
Or should I completely uninstall them?


This.

And you'd want to check all the nooks and crannies like Application Support, and of course Prefs.

I have no idea where all the bits of flotsam and jetsam may reside, or which ones might be the problem and which one couldn't possibly be causing you grief.

But getting as much as you can should help you rule out a possible suspect.

You might also try getting an external drive and installing the OS only, no files or apps that didn't come from Apple.

Maybe after the day's done, boot from that when you don't need to do your usual work and see if you get the problem.

If for a few overnights you don't see the problem, then maybe add an app one at a time and run with that.

This would be a somewhat lengthy and tedious process, but it might save you having to buy a new machine.

But then



or




or




would look really great in your favorite computing corner.

I really wanted to like the yellow, but it's not maize enough, or maybe more canary.

Big fan of pastels, I think the above three look great.




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Re: Thinking of Giving Up the Ghost on my iMac. Question?
Posted by: graylocks
Date: January 13, 2022 07:44PM
Quote
RAMd®d
But then



or




or




would look really great in your favorite computing corner.

I really wanted to like the yellow, but it's not maize enough, or maybe more canary.

Big fan of pastels, I think the above three look great.

You are downright sadistic, Ram!

devil smiley



"Success isn't about how much money you make. It is about the difference you make in people's lives."--Michelle Obama
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Re: Thinking of Giving Up the Ghost on my iMac. Question?
Posted by: Buzz
Date: January 13, 2022 09:30PM
Old geezer friend/client recently got a blue M1 iMac.... while amazing, there are a few compatibility niggles to deal with. If ya have room to keep both for awhile, that may make for a smooth(er) transition if you dare to go Rammie's route.

I was surprised at, in general, how great the M1 iMac is IRL.
Just a thought. You might (read that; "definitely will" ) like it.
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