I have a Mac OS X 10.8.5 virtual machine running on a 6-core Mac Pro Mid 2012 (MacPro5,1) with Server.app installed.

Kernel information: Darwin forceten.farcry.sitepalette.com 12.5.0 Darwin Kernel Version 12.5.0: Sun Sep 29 13:33:47 PDT 2013; root:xnu-2050.48.12~1/RELEASE_X86_64 x86_64

The machine is very stable as long as the GUI is not used. If I log in using Remote Desktop, or if I use the actual console, it will often hard lockup. Sometimes this happens when I launch Server.app, sometimes it just happens if I log in and do nothing.

When the machine locks up I am unable to SSH in, unable to use ARD to get in, the mouse cursor moves but I cannot click anything, up and no keyboard commands I know work. (commandoptionesc has no effect) It is almost like the machine is kernel panicking but when I reboot (force reboot is the only way) I do not get a kernel panic log. The machine stops responding to pings, all my active terminal or ARD sessions die.

I can find no messages in the console, system.log, or anywhere else in /var/log nor /Library/Logs that gets written to. It's like the system locks up without being able to log anything. I was running tail -f /var/log/* and while true; do dmesg; sleep 1; done when this happened most recently and saw nothing in dmesg nor logs.

Since it's related to the GUI I expect it has to do with a graphics issue, possibly a bad KEXT for graphics, or maybe a problem with Quartz. But I am unsure how to troubleshoot this.

I have done clean install of the OS and this does not resolve the situation. I'd like to troubleshoot this further but am unsure how to proceed. How can I troubleshoot a mac that's hard locking up?

You must log in to answer this question.

Browse other questions tagged .