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I've recently installed El Capitan. The other day I restarted my computer for the first time for a while, and now it doesn't boot. I restarted in verbose mode and can see that there's a kernel panic relating to com.eltima.SyncMate.kext. It seemed like that was probably an incompatible extension, so I took a copy of the kext and then deleted EltimaAsync.kext from /System/Library/Extensions.

Sadly, when I rebooted, the problem persisted with the same kernel panic. I've searched high and low for other references to "eltima" anywhere on the drive, but I haven't found anything that looks relevant. I'm wondering if perhaps the kext has been pre-compiled in somewhere. I don't know if it's relevant, but the drive in question is encrypted with FileVault.

Is there something I can do to properly disable this kext so I can get the computer to boot? If possible I'd really like to avoid having to start from a clean install, even though I do have a good backup.

  • One thing - Apple might be interested in supporting you since their installer should have disabled the kext and given you clear instructions. Also, SIP should prevent putting things where they cannot run. My guess is they would help you for free in exchange for learning if their installer or protection needs better tooling, dialogs or better fallback. – bmike Oct 16 '15 at 15:56
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So, for anyone who is in a similar position to me, the critical step that I was missing after getting rid of the offending .kext, was removing the various caches that were resulting in it still getting loaded during the FileVault startup process.

Removing /var/vm/sleep* and /var/folders/* from the FileVault volume caused all the caches to be rebuilt and the system booted correctly.

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When you say the Mac doesn't boot - can you get it booted in safe mode (holding shift)? If so, you can delete the kext and try again a normal boot.

Worst case, you could boot into Recovery HD and open terminal from the utilities menu. Delete the offending kernel extension and then try booting again.

  • Unfortunately this is exactly what I've tried already, to no avail. I've booted into the recovery partition and deleted the kext, but it still seems to be being loaded somehow, which is really weird. Perhaps it has been cached/precompiled in somewhere? – hollandlef Oct 16 '15 at 16:31
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Only one thing in addition. I found the damp Extension in another file folder. /Volumes/Macintosh HD/System/Library/Extensions

Maybe this is different depending on the base system you migrate from. I did it from SnowLeopard.

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protected by Community Oct 23 '15 at 23:44

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