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Macbook Pro power management seems broken...

Message #1 - Posted 2006/10/10 - John McWilliams

Randy Howard wrote:

I'm not sure how long this has been going on, but it is definitely happening now, with 10.4.8 and all other updates applied. I have had intermittent problems seemingly related to the power management implementation since I purchased it a few months back as well. (For example, it does not reliably wake up from sleep, sometimes it just gives a blank screen and you have to hard reset it, that problem seems to be less common now than before)

This problem is that it absolutely refuses to honor the settings for when /not/ to shut down the machine, even when running off of external wall power. So, even though I have gone in and set the power management profile to "Custom" and told it to Never shut the system down when idle (which really means no keyboard/mouse movement) it will shut down anyway. This is very annoying, since despite the common belief that computers are only useful when someone is typing on them or clicking a mouse on a web page, they /can/ actually do real work while you're not there babysitting them.

The problem is, no matter what, if you don't move the mouse or click a key every so often, the MBP will shut down after a while and I can't find any way to stop it from doing so. Any help much appreciated.

I'd take the battery out, hold down the power key for 5 seconds. This should reset the hardware power management. IIRC, of course.

John McWilliams

Message #2 - Posted 2006/10/12 - Randy Howard

John McWilliams wrote (in a previous article):

Randy Howard wrote:

I'm not sure how long this has been going on, but it is definitely happening now, with 10.4.8 and all other updates applied. I have had intermittent problems seemingly related to the power management implementation since I purchased it a few months back as well. (For example, it does not reliably wake up from sleep, sometimes it just gives a blank screen and you have to hard reset it, that problem seems to be less common now than before)

This problem is that it absolutely refuses to honor the settings for when /not/ to shut down the machine, even when running off of external wall power. So, even though I have gone in and set the power management profile to "Custom" and told it to Never shut the system down when idle (which really means no keyboard/mouse movement) it will shut down anyway. This is very annoying, since despite the common belief that computers are only useful when someone is typing on them or clicking a mouse on a web page, they /can/ actually do real work while you're not there babysitting them.

The problem is, no matter what, if you don't move the mouse or click a key every so often, the MBP will shut down after a while and I can't find any way to stop it from doing so. Any help much appreciated.

I'd take the battery out, hold down the power key for 5 seconds. This should reset the hardware power management. IIRC, of course.

Tried that, multiple times. Power management is flat out broken on this thing. The only thing that I've found to prevent it is to run iTunes. Apparently apple is convinced that if you are running iTunes they don't need to force your computer to turn off against your will.

Randy Howard (2reply remove FOOBAR)
"The power of accurate observation is called cynicism by those who have not got it." - George Bernard Shaw

Message #3 - Posted 2006/10/12 - John McWilliams

Randy Howard wrote:

John McWilliams wrote (in a previous article):

Randy Howard wrote:

I'm not sure how long this has been going on, but it is definitely happening now, with 10.4.8 and all other updates applied. I have had intermittent problems seemingly related to the power management implementation since I purchased it a few months back as well. (For example, it does not reliably wake up from sleep, sometimes it just gives a blank screen and you have to hard reset it, that problem seems to be less common now than before)

This problem is that it absolutely refuses to honor the settings for when /not/ to shut down the machine, even when running off of external wall power. So, even though I have gone in and set the power management profile to "Custom" and told it to Never shut the system down when idle (which really means no keyboard/mouse movement) it will shut down anyway. This is very annoying, since despite the common belief that computers are only useful when someone is typing on them or clicking a mouse on a web page, they /can/ actually do real work while you're not there babysitting them.

The problem is, no matter what, if you don't move the mouse or click a key every so often, the MBP will shut down after a while and I can't find any way to stop it from doing so. Any help much appreciated.

I'd take the battery out, hold down the power key for 5 seconds. This should reset the hardware power management. IIRC, of course.

Tried that, multiple times. Power management is flat out broken on this thing. The only thing that I've found to prevent it is to run iTunes. Apparently apple is convinced that if you are running iTunes they don't need to force your computer to turn off against your will.

Wow! But you found a "solution"! "Sounds" rather unique.....

John McWilliams

Message #4 - Posted 2006/10/12 - Jolly Roger

On 2006-10-10 13:22:02 -0500, Randy Howard said:

I'm not sure how long this has been going on, but it is definitely happening now, with 10.4.8 and all other updates applied. I have had intermittent problems seemingly related to the power management implementation since I purchased it a few months back as well. (For example, it does not reliably wake up from sleep, sometimes it just gives a blank screen and you have to hard reset it, that problem seems to be less common now than before)

This problem is that it absolutely refuses to honor the settings for when /not/ to shut down the machine, even when running off of external wall power. So, even though I have gone in and set the power management profile to "Custom" and told it to Never shut the system down when idle (which really means no keyboard/mouse movement) it will shut down anyway. This is very annoying, since despite the common belief that computers are only useful when someone is typing on them or clicking a mouse on a web page, they /can/ actually do real work while you're not there babysitting them.

The problem is, no matter what, if you don't move the mouse or click a key every so often, the MBP will shut down after a while and I can't find any way to stop it from doing so. Any help much appreciated.

It seems like you are using confusing and incorrect terminology above.

When you say "shut down", do you really mean "go to sleep"? When it happens, do you have to boot up all over again (startup chime and all), or is the computer simply sleeping and need to be woken up?

Likewise, when you say "power management profile", I assume you really mean "Energy Saver profile", right?

I know of no Energy Saver setting to "Never shut the system down when idle".

I do, however, know Energy Saver can be configured to (or not to) put your machine to *sleep* when idle.

Note that this setting has zero influence on whether or not the machine goes to sleep when you close the lid. When you close the lid to your MacBook Pro, the machine will go to sleep and this is normal behavior. The exception to this rule is when you have an external monitor attached to the DVI port of the MacBook Pro. With an external monitor attached, the lid can be closed while the computer is awake.

If your computer is going to sleep regardless of the Energy Saver configuration, you might try deleting the /Library/Preferences/SystemConfiguration/com.apple.PowerManagement.plist file to see if that helps.

Have you checked to see if your battery isn't part of the recent Apple battery recall? If your battery is one of the bad ones, it's entirely possible your battery is causing some power manager confusion that might cause your computer to sleep when it shouldn't, spontaneously shut down, refuse to start up, etc.

JR

Message #5 - Posted 2006/10/13 - Randy Howard

Jolly Roger wrote (in a previous article):

On 2006-10-10 13:22:02 -0500, Randy Howard said:

I'm not sure how long this has been going on, but it is definitely happening now, with 10.4.8 and all other updates applied. I have had intermittent problems seemingly related to the power management implementation since I purchased it a few months back as well. (For example, it does not reliably wake up from sleep, sometimes it just gives a blank screen and you have to hard reset it, that problem seems to be less common now than before)

This problem is that it absolutely refuses to honor the settings for when /not/ to shut down the machine, even when running off of external wall power. So, even though I have gone in and set the power management profile to "Custom" and told it to Never shut the system down when idle (which really means no keyboard/mouse movement) it will shut down anyway. This is very annoying, since despite the common belief that computers are only useful when someone is typing on them or clicking a mouse on a web page, they /can/ actually do real work while you're not there babysitting them.

The problem is, no matter what, if you don't move the mouse or click a key every so often, the MBP will shut down after a while and I can't find any way to stop it from doing so. Any help much appreciated.

It seems like you are using confusing and incorrect terminology above.

When you say "shut down", do you really mean "go to sleep"?

No, I do not.

When it
happens, do you have to boot up all over again (startup chime and all), or is the computer simply sleeping and need to be woken up?

It has completely shut down, and you get the gray screen, the chimes, and the login window.

Likewise, when you say "power management profile", I assume you really mean "Energy Saver profile", right?

Sure. It's power management hardware, but apple has a different name for it within the OS.

I know of no Energy Saver setting to "Never shut the system down when idle".

True. The setting is "Put the computer to sleep when it is inactive for", and I have selected "Never". Instead of sleeping is simply shuts down, which there is no configuration for, presumably. As such, it should not happen at any time other than when you lose AC power, or the battery goes dead if not plugged into the brick.

I do, however, know Energy Saver can be configured to (or not to) put your machine to *sleep* when idle.

Right.

Note that this setting has zero influence on whether or not the machine goes to sleep when you close the lid. When you close the lid to your MacBook Pro, the machine will go to sleep and this is normal behavior.

Understood, and I am not closing the lid. The system is running on a desk, plugged in, and with a battery, all from a UPS. There is no power interruption of any kind, and I do *not* want it to shut down unless I tell it do so.

The exception to this rule is when you have an external monitor attached to the DVI port of the MacBook Pro. With an external monitor attached, the lid can be closed while the computer is awake.

I'm using the built-in screen only.

If your computer is going to sleep regardless of the Energy Saver configuration, you might try deleting the /Library/Preferences/SystemConfiguration/com.apple.PowerManagement.plist file to see if that helps.

I will try that.

Have you checked to see if your battery isn't part of the recent Apple battery recall? If your battery is one of the bad ones, it's entirely possible your battery is causing some power manager confusion that might cause your computer to sleep when it shouldn't, spontaneously shut down, refuse to start up, etc.

I have checked the battery, and it is not part of the range shown on Apple's website. I have tried it with the battery removed also, same issue.

Also, there is a bug there. If you remove the battery, the power settings icon in the top menu bar changes to indicate there is no battery present, which I would expect. However, if you reinsert the battery while it is running off the wall outlet, that icon never changes, and it will not acknowledge the presence of the battery until you reboot. They evidently do not look for the battery to show up again once it has been removed.

Randy Howard (2reply remove FOOBAR)
"The power of accurate observation is called cynicism by those who have not got it." - George Bernard Shaw

Message #6 - Posted 2006/10/13 - Randy Howard

John McWilliams wrote (in a previous article):

Randy Howard wrote:

John McWilliams wrote (in a previous article):

Randy Howard wrote:

I'm not sure how long this has been going on, but it is definitely happening now, with 10.4.8 and all other updates applied. I have had intermittent problems seemingly related to the power management implementation since I purchased it a few months back as well. (For example, it does not reliably wake up from sleep, sometimes it just gives a blank screen and you have to hard reset it, that problem seems to be less common now than before)

This problem is that it absolutely refuses to honor the settings for when /not/ to shut down the machine, even when running off of external wall power. So, even though I have gone in and set the power management profile to "Custom" and told it to Never shut the system down when idle (which really means no keyboard/mouse movement) it will shut down anyway. This is very annoying, since despite the common belief that computers are only useful when someone is typing on them or clicking a mouse on a web page, they /can/ actually do real work while you're not there babysitting them.

The problem is, no matter what, if you don't move the mouse or click a key every so often, the MBP will shut down after a while and I can't find any way to stop it from doing so. Any help much appreciated.

I'd take the battery out, hold down the power key for 5 seconds. This should reset the hardware power management. IIRC, of course.

Tried that, multiple times. Power management is flat out broken on this thing. The only thing that I've found to prevent it is to run iTunes. Apparently apple is convinced that if you are running iTunes they don't need to force your computer to turn off against your will.

Wow! But you found a "solution"!

It's not a solution at all. I shouldn't have to be playing music to keep my computer from shutting down.

"Sounds" rather unique.....

If you are implying that I am making it up, go fish. If you are saying it's a rare problem, I don't doubt it. I just wish there was a solution, because it is very annoying to have to touch the mouse or keyboard every half hour or to keep it from shutting down against my will.

Randy Howard (2reply remove FOOBAR)
"The power of accurate observation is called cynicism by those who have not got it." - George Bernard Shaw

Message #7 - Posted 2006/10/13 - Tom Stiller

Previously, Randy Howard wrote:

I'm not sure how long this has been going on, but it is definitely happening now, with 10.4.8 and all other updates applied. I have had intermittent problems seemingly related to the power management implementation since I purchased it a few months back as well. (For example, it does not reliably wake up from sleep, sometimes it just gives a blank screen and you have to hard reset it, that problem seems to be less common now than before)

This problem is that it absolutely refuses to honor the settings for when /not/ to shut down the machine, even when running off of external wall power. So, even though I have gone in and set the power management profile to "Custom" and told it to Never shut the system down when idle (which really means no keyboard/mouse movement) it will shut down anyway. This is very annoying, since despite the common belief that computers are only useful when someone is typing on them or clicking a mouse on a web page, they /can/ actually do real work while you're not there babysitting them.

The problem is, no matter what, if you don't move the mouse or click a key every so often, the MBP will shut down after a while and I can't find any way to stop it from doing so. Any help much appreciated.

You might explore the various power management settings using the command-line tool, pmset. See 'man pmset' for details.

Tom Stiller

PGP fingerprint = 5108 DDB2 9761 EDE5 E7E3
7BDA 71ED 6496 99C0 C7CF

Message #8 - Posted 2006/10/13 - Jolly Roger

On 2006-10-13 16:04:14 -0500, Randy Howard said:

Jolly Roger wrote (in a previous article):

On 2006-10-10 13:22:02 -0500, Randy Howard said:

I'm not sure how long this has been going on, but it is definitely happening now, with 10.4.8 and all other updates applied. I have had intermittent problems seemingly related to the power management implementation since I purchased it a few months back as well. (For example, it does not reliably wake up from sleep, sometimes it just gives a blank screen and you have to hard reset it, that problem seems to be less common now than before)

This problem is that it absolutely refuses to honor the settings for when /not/ to shut down the machine, even when running off of external wall power. So, even though I have gone in and set the power management profile to "Custom" and told it to Never shut the system down when idle (which really means no keyboard/mouse movement) it will shut down anyway. This is very annoying, since despite the common belief that computers are only useful when someone is typing on them or clicking a mouse on a web page, they /can/ actually do real work while you're not there babysitting them.

The problem is, no matter what, if you don't move the mouse or click a key every so often, the MBP will shut down after a while and I can't find any way to stop it from doing so. Any help much appreciated.

It seems like you are using confusing and incorrect terminology above.

When you say "shut down", do you really mean "go to sleep"?

No, I do not.

When it happens, do you have to boot up all over again (startup chime and all), or is the computer simply sleeping and need to be woken up?

It has completely shut down, and you get the gray screen, the chimes, and the login window.

Likewise, when you say "power management profile", I assume you really mean "Energy Saver profile", right?

Sure. It's power management hardware, but apple has a different name for it within the OS.

I know of no Energy Saver setting to "Never shut the system down when idle".

True. The setting is "Put the computer to sleep when it is inactive for", and I have selected "Never". Instead of sleeping is simply shuts down, which there is no configuration for, presumably. As such, it should not happen at any time other than when you lose AC power, or the battery goes dead if not plugged into the brick.

I do, however, know Energy Saver can be configured to (or not to) put your machine to *sleep* when idle.

Right.

Note that this setting has zero influence on whether or not the machine goes to sleep when you close the lid. When you close the lid to your MacBook Pro, the machine will go to sleep and this is normal behavior.

Understood, and I am not closing the lid. The system is running on a desk, plugged in, and with a battery, all from a UPS. There is no power interruption of any kind, and I do *not* want it to shut down unless I tell it do so.

The exception to this rule is when you have an external monitor attached to the DVI port of the MacBook Pro. With an external monitor attached, the lid can be closed while the computer is awake.

I'm using the built-in screen only.

If your computer is going to sleep regardless of the Energy Saver configuration, you might try deleting the /Library/Preferences/SystemConfiguration/com.apple.PowerManagement.plist file to see if that helps.

I will try that.

Have you checked to see if your battery isn't part of the recent Apple battery recall? If your battery is one of the bad ones, it's entirely possible your battery is causing some power manager confusion that might cause your computer to sleep when it shouldn't, spontaneously shut down, refuse to start up, etc.

I have checked the battery, and it is not part of the range shown on Apple's website. I have tried it with the battery removed also, same issue.
Also, there is a bug there. If you remove the battery, the power settings icon in the top menu bar changes to indicate there is no battery present, which I would expect. However, if you reinsert the battery while it is running off the wall outlet, that icon never changes, and it will not acknowledge the presence of the battery until you reboot. They evidently do not look for the battery to show up again once it has been removed.

So then it seems this may simply be the famed MacBook Pro random spontaneous shutdown problem.
Three questions for you:

How many times have you contacted Apple Support about this issue?

What was the outcome?

Are you aware of the impending class action lawsuit against Apple regarding this issue? <http://www.appleinsider.com/article.php?id=2132>

JR

Message #9 - Posted 2006/10/13 - John McWilliams

Randy Howard wrote:

John McWilliams wrote

on't need to force your computer to turn

off against your will.

Wow! But you found a "solution"!

It's not a solution at all. I shouldn't have to be playing music to keep my computer from shutting down.

Um, "solution" was in quotes, for a different reason than it is now.

"Sounds" rather unique.....

If you are implying that I am making it up, go fish. If you are saying it's a rare problem, I don't doubt it. I just wish there was a solution, because it is very annoying to have to touch the mouse or keyboard every half hour or to keep it from shutting down against my will.

O.K., I get that it really annoys you. Sorry for your troubles. My reply wasn't intended to either goad you or question you. The word "sounds" was also in quotes, being a (rather lame) pun with respect to iTunes.

john mcwilliams

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