10.5.2 freezes 

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Weather widget: Geneva, February 20, 2008: cold and raining soon

When an update makes you feel sick. This is what the latest Mac OS 10.5.2 update makes me want to do. It is a sad world when you start to loose trust in what use to be a flawless reliable tool. I have never experienced freezes like he ones I am experiencing since the latest update. I'm not talking of spinning beach balls or kernel panics, no. Simple down right down freeze. The computer just stops responding. Boom. No crash, no log entry, nothing. Zilch. Nada. You're just left out in the cold with the «Press the power button» option.

Well, this sucks. I haven't experienced this since the Mac OS 9 days, or the early 10.0 beta. After like 6 hours use, the computer suddenly stops responding. Randomly.

I first suspected a hardware problem as I upgraded to 3Gb of RAM the same day, but no. Reverting to my previous 2Gb didn't solve the problem. Lately, a number of people have been complaining of exactly the same issue in Apple's Disscusion board: MacBook Pro Freezes after successfull 10.5.2 update. A growing number of other posts in different categories or weblogsare starting to report this problem too.

It is also worth noting that these freezes occured after installing the Mac OS 10.5.2 update combo (after reparing permissions, etc.) but before installing the Leopard Graphic update. Downgrading to 10.5.1 would mean a complete reinstall. Hope not.

I tried an old trick that use to prove useful in the Mac OS 9 days: PRAM reset. In order to reset NVRAM/PRAM: Shutdown your Mac, then start it back up while immediately holding the following keys: Command, Option, P and R. Hold the keys down until the computer restarts and you hear the startup sound for the third time. I don't know if this will help in any way, but it is worth a try.

What is odd infuriating is that the Leopard Graphic update was supposed to fix this problem in machines suffering from this problem prior to the update, not spread it to machines which worked flawlessly.

It's early morning and cold outside. Lets not start the day grumpy and in a bad mood. Don't forget to smile.

I'm running a MacBook Pro 2.33Ghz C2D/3/160/10.5.2

Update: Zapping the PRAM/VRAM and reapplying the Leopard Graphic update seems to have fixed the problem for me. No freezes in the last 48hrs. Nevertheless, bug reports are still being posted.

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Comments and responses

  • 28 Feb 2008

    Sadly, the freezes are still occuring. They usually happen when I’m running on battery power, whatever the application running.
    If Apple doesn’t come out with a solution quickly, my only choice will be to clean install 10.5.1 and wait.
    It really makes me feel angry.
    On the gripe level, please be aware that the SiliconImage ExpressCard 34 eSATA host controller generates kernel panics under Leopard when inserted or ejected from my MacBook Pro. The current driver is v1.1.9 and this includes cards sold by Sonnet and LaCie. Sucks.

  • 28 Feb 2008


    I hear you man. Same problem here. As a “switcher,” I’m kind of disappointed in OS X, given this freezing issue.
    I hope they come up with a fix soon.

  • 01 Mar 2008


    Same here. Freezes started happening after the graphic update. Random but seem to be triggered by Safari + running on battery. I repaired permissions and freezes stopped for 3 days but then again it froze the last night :(
    I feel exactly as you said — it’s sad to lose trust in a reliable tool (MacBook Pro).
    I hope for a fix from Apple…

  • 03 Mar 2008

    Hi there D,
    10.5.2 upgrade is terrible. Same as You, I’ve been completely confident in using the Software Update without any hesitations, but now …
    I mean, my MBP is freezing at least once per day, my Garageband is unusable, Safari chrashes so often that I’m switching to Firefox again ….WTF.
    And one can only dream of the times when I had like 50-100 working days of uptime on my PB G4.
    I’m not upgrading anymore before some time period given to see what the other (un)lucky users are reporting.
    Thanks for the tips, but in my case it didn’t help :(

  • 06 Mar 2008

    As this issue is growing, an interesting fix was posted on Apple Discussions which you might want to try if you are running into this problem:
    Steve Eugene posted the following:
    This is a HARDWARE problem!
    After playing around with removing the battery and noticing that this often returned functionality to the keyboard I surmised that this had some sort of physical aspect.
    Sure enough, there is a section of copper colored tape/wiring exposed in the batter slot that is slightly bowed where it’s smallest.
    When I depressed this with my finger tip on this portion to basically flatten it out flush against the housing; I found that all functionality was restored!
    As amazing as it sounds, it has actually worked for a number of readers who were suffering from this issue.
    Check out the ful post with images at http://discussions.apple.com/thread.jspa?threadID=1365569&tstart=60

  • 21 Mar 2008

    Things are getting WORSE.
    My MacBook Pro not only freezes when running on battery with Airport WiFi enabled, it now randomly shutdowns. Bang. Just like if you’d pulled the plug from a desktop machine.
    I reinstalled a fresh copy of 10.5, and updated to 10.5.2 with the latest Security Updates and Airport patches.
    At reboot, the system logs show:
    Mar 18 21:31:25 cinnamon kernel0: Previous Shutdown Cause: 0
    The freezes generated a cause 3 at reboot,
    Mar 18 21:31:25 cinnamon kernel0: Previous Shutdown Cause: 3
    My patience has almot ran out. Just as my trust in this computer.
    The thread on Apple Discussions is getting longer and longer…

  • 23 Mar 2008

    The random shutdowns seem related to a battery problem. The problem disappeared after switching to a new battery.
    Fingers crossed, I haven’t experienced a freeze after reverting back to the factory memory modules.

  • 23 Mar 2008

    I am a 7 day old Mac virgin. Top of the range MAC BOOK PRO and 3 freezes – this bug is all over the web (90,000 + hits if you search for 10.5.2 freezes)..
    Seems this problem had been around since late Jan (10.5.2 and Graphics updates may be the cause).
    3 calls to Apple support and they acknowledge a problem, one guy confessed they (Apple) are not near a fix and stumped.. SAD..

  • 24 Mar 2008

    Larry B:

    I have been experiencing the sudden freeze up of Leopard ever since upgrading to 10.5.2 back in February. After reviewing the kernel crisis log with a fella at the Apple genius bar at our local store, I was told my MacBook Pro probably has a problem with the ram. I installed new ram and still have the same symptoms, e.g. random freeze ups that occur sometimes when I’m first bootin up, other times after several hours of use.
    I wonder if Apple really knows there is a problem with Leopard vis-a-vis MacBook Pro freez ups and Leopard 10.5.2. Can anyone confirm a documented conversation with Apple’s technical staff on this issue?
    If not, can someone advise as to how to go about getting in touch with the Apple technical people?

  • 07 Apr 2008

    Matt T:

    David: I’m having a similar problem but from my crude diagnosis, it’s not a “HARDWARE problem” I have boot camp installed on my MBP 15” and I booted into Windows XP and it seems to run fine off of the battery.
    I don’t know if this helps you but I figured that I’d throw that tidbit of information into the cosmos and see what happens.

  • 12 Apr 2008

    I have been having the same issues.
    I replaced my MBP battery (under warranty), and also took out what I thought was a bad stick of ram.
    I thought it was fixed, and I ran on battery all night last night, with no issues.
    Tonight, I froze up twice while running the battery.

  • 19 May 2008

    Dave C:

    I am a 10 day new switcher (brand new combo-drive Mac Mini)having the same problems – I have 10.5.2 and this issue started when the the graphics update was installed.

  • 23 May 2008

    champlet Jerome:

    my machine (french):
    Informations matériel :
    Nom du modèle : MacBook Pro 15”
    Identifiant du modèle : MacBookPro2,2
    Nom du processeur : Intel Core 2 Duo
    Vitesse du processeur : 2.16 GHz
    Nombre de processeurs : 1
    Nombre total de cœurs : 2
    Cache de niveau 2 : 4 Mo
    Mémoire : 1 Go
    Vitesse du bus : 667 MHz
    Version de la ROM de démarrage : MBP22.00A5.B07
    Version SMC : 1.12f5
    Numéro de série : 3R70367FW0G
    Capteur de mouvement brusque :
    État : Activé
    Same problems, sometimes, when seeing a film: the computer completely freeze (no trackpad neither keyboard).
    Reading audio: a small part of the file loop playing like a record scraching, the only solution: hard restart.
    I am musician and perform for hundreds people:I buy a PC and run under Vista?
    Thank for advices

  • 25 Jun 2008

    Paolo Bonora:

    This is Paolo from Padova, italy, and yes, we have same problem here. It just happens to me when MBP runs on batteries. When it’s powered, no probs at all. I’m running 10.5.3 now, and thinking to switch back to Tiger.
    Oddly, with Windows XP (on Bootcamp) this problem doesn’t pop up, either on batteries or not. So it MUST be a software problem right? No way I’m gonna use WinXP though, I prefer to run on powered :)

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