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Snow Leopard Problems


The first system I tried Snow Leopard on was my 1st generation Macbook. I expected some problems installing onto a hackintosh but all the reports I have read so far say the Leopard to Snow Leopard upgrade works just fine. Unfortunately this hasn’t been the case with my Macbook.

Before starting the upgrade I made a full backup to an external hard drive. The Snow Leopard upgrade is fairly straightforward, there are few options you can change now so it’s just a case of insert the DVD and go through the installer steps. After installation there were immediate problems visible, starting with many missing items at the right side of the menu bar. No time, no iStat menu’s and other items missing. I’ve since found out that iStat menu’s has problems with Snow Leopard, but trying to go into System Preferences> Date & Time>Clock just caused System Preferences to hang and needing a Force Quit. It looked like there was a conflict somewhere, so I tried again.

The second attempt was started by erasing the Macbook’s internal hard drive then doing a fresh Snow Leopard install. During the setup wizard I selected to import my user account from the still connected USB backup drive, but de-selected the options to import applications, settings and other files. This should have just imported my data but again I had the same problems once setup finished, so it looks like files in the use accounts Library folder were the problem.

After two tries I decided to just do a fresh install and add any apps I needed, and this has worked fine. It’s also a lot simpler than uninstalling iStat menu’s and any other incompatible software, as well as providing a fresh start for Snow Leopard. I don’t use the Macbook for much beyond Web browsing, email and storing/viewing media while on holiday, so there’s not much to install. To be fair here the Macbook originally had a Leopard 10.5 install when that was released and has received every point update along the way. I never got a Windows upgrade to work so I don’t think this is an unreasonable problem.

UPDATE After Joel left a comment also reporting iStat Menu problems I had another go at importing my user account and applications from the 10.5.8 backup. First I connected the USB backup drive and booted from this (hold ALT at startup for the boot menu), then uninstalled iStat Menus from the System Preferences panel. Rebooted into Snow Leopard and used the Migration Assistant to import the user account and applications, after another reboot everything appears to be working ok. I had to update Little Snitch to the latest Beta for Snow Leopard support and some apps have asked for their serial numbers, but apart from that there have been no serious problems so far. The migration assistant was clever enough to not replace the latest Snow Leopard compatible version of Quicksilver with an older version from the 10.5.8 install, so I’m hoping there will be no further issues.

  1. September 1, 2009 at 1:45 am

    I found this too. iStat Menu is completely incompatible with SystemUIServer (Or whatever it is in SL), but after removing iStat Menu, the applet “dock” immediately started responding and started up just fine. (Didn’t even need to reboot.)

    Of course, now I’m without iStat Menus, during a period where it would be nice to see when an app is dominating the CPU because it’s imcompatible with SL. 😦

  2. basshead
    September 1, 2009 at 10:32 am

    Thanks for the info Joel, I have had another go at importing my 10.5.8 user account after uninstalling iStat Menu’s and the initial problems I mentioned have gone. I found a couple of incompatible apps that needed updating but so far it’s looking a lot better. I’ve been using Activity Monitor in the dock with the icon set to CPU graphs to keep a watch for anything locking up.

  3. September 2, 2009 at 4:03 am

    I have had a few problems with SL so far. For example, CuteFTP doesn’t work so I had to upgrade to CaptainFTP Pro 6.1 (THANK GOD FOR THE IMPORT!).

    Other problems I am having now is Word and Captain will randomly quit now… I haven’t noticed other programs quitting yet.

    I contact istat and yes they are frantically working on a fix (Funny, i wonder why this wasn’t done months ago, you would think Apple would allow them to “sandbox” SL to come up with a fix….

    Fortunately iStat widget for the Dashboard still works.

  4. basshead
    September 2, 2009 at 7:20 am

    I have read that many software companies were expecting Snow Leopard to ship nearer the end of September. The early release has thrown their plans out a little, with most now rushing to get Snow Leopard compatible versions out asap.

  5. TomP
    September 4, 2009 at 6:26 pm

    There’s new, compatible, version of iStat Menu available on their website now.

  1. September 10, 2009 at 9:22 am

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