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Panther login failure...

 
 
Paul Kropp
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      07-11-2004, 05:47 AM
About a week after upgrading to Panther via archive and install,
suddenly the login function is (almost) broken on our Cube.

What is happening now is this (there are two users on this machine):

-the startup sequence finishes and the login window appears w/ the two
names

-if one or the other logs in immediately, all goes well

-but if one user logs out and we're back to the login screen, any
subsequent attempt to log in fails and all we have is the spinning
candy bar forever (the only way to get back to OS X is via the reset
button)

-also, and even more wierd, if several minutes pass before either user
tries to log in after a fresh startup or a restart, the login fails
(spinning candy bar again)

Permissions are all repaired and I have tried repairing the disk with
the Panther installer's disk utility, and I have used DiskWarrior on
the drive, too. All is okay with them.

How should I go about troubleshooting this issue?
 
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Steven Fisher
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      07-11-2004, 10:10 AM
In article <(E-Mail Removed) >,
(E-Mail Removed) (Paul Kropp) wrote:

> How should I go about troubleshooting this issue?


What happens if you boot with the disk repair disk but wait, say, 20
minutes before doing the scan?

At such a basic level, I'd expect spinning cursor to be hardware --
either hard drive or memory.

--
Steven Fisher; (E-Mail Removed)
"Morituri Nolumus Mori."
 
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Paul Kropp
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      07-11-2004, 03:05 PM
Steven Fisher <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message news:<(E-Mail Removed)>...
> In article <(E-Mail Removed) >,
> (E-Mail Removed) (Paul Kropp) wrote:
>
> > How should I go about troubleshooting this issue?

>
> What happens if you boot with the disk repair disk but wait, say, 20
> minutes before doing the scan?
>
> At such a basic level, I'd expect spinning cursor to be hardware --
> either hard drive or memory.


Steven, I will try that; you have a good point.

Tho I'm sceptical about this being hardware-related because all other
functions of this system work just fine for long sessions every day
after login.

BTW, we don't get a spinning cursor; it's a horizontal, rotating blue
and white striped "candy bar" which you normally see very briefly
after you press <enter> after you type in a correct password.

Do any others watching this thread have some ideas about our problem?
 
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matt neuburg
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      07-11-2004, 03:12 PM
Paul Kropp <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

> About a week after upgrading to Panther via archive and install,
> suddenly the login function is (almost) broken on our Cube.
>
> What is happening now is this (there are two users on this machine):
>
> -the startup sequence finishes and the login window appears w/ the two
> names
>
> -if one or the other logs in immediately, all goes well
>
> -but if one user logs out and we're back to the login screen, any
> subsequent attempt to log in fails and all we have is the spinning
> candy bar forever (the only way to get back to OS X is via the reset
> button)
>
> -also, and even more wierd, if several minutes pass before either user
> tries to log in after a fresh startup or a restart, the login fails
> (spinning candy bar again)
>
> Permissions are all repaired and I have tried repairing the disk with
> the Panther installer's disk utility, and I have used DiskWarrior on
> the drive, too. All is okay with them.
>
> How should I go about troubleshooting this issue?


Just guessing here, but I would start by using a cache-cleaner program.
Also I would consider throwing away

/Library/Preferences/com.apple.loginwindow.plist
/Library/Preferences/loginwindow.plist

Also I would try starting up in "safe mode" and see whether eliminating
kexts and startup items in this way has an effect on the problem.

m.


--
matt neuburg, phd = (E-Mail Removed), http://www.tidbits.com/matt/
AppleScript: The Definitive Guide
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/AS...methingsbymatt
Read TidBITS! It's free and smart. http://www.tidbits.com
 
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Steve Lidie
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      07-11-2004, 05:14 PM
Paul Kropp <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> Steven Fisher <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message news:<(E-Mail Removed)>...
>> In article <(E-Mail Removed) >,
>> (E-Mail Removed) (Paul Kropp) wrote:
>>
>> > How should I go about troubleshooting this issue?

>>
>> What happens if you boot with the disk repair disk but wait, say, 20
>> minutes before doing the scan?
>>
>> At such a basic level, I'd expect spinning cursor to be hardware --
>> either hard drive or memory.

>
> Steven, I will try that; you have a good point.
>
> Tho I'm sceptical about this being hardware-related because all other
> functions of this system work just fine for long sessions every day
> after login.
>
> BTW, we don't get a spinning cursor; it's a horizontal, rotating blue
> and white striped "candy bar" which you normally see very briefly
> after you press <enter> after you type in a correct password.
>
> Do any others watching this thread have some ideas about our problem?


Check the log files in /var/log/ (system.log, secure.log, etc)
 
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matt neuburg
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      07-11-2004, 06:02 PM
matt neuburg <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

> Paul Kropp <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>
> > About a week after upgrading to Panther via archive and install,
> > suddenly the login function is (almost) broken on our Cube.
> >
> > What is happening now is this (there are two users on this machine):
> >
> > -the startup sequence finishes and the login window appears w/ the two
> > names
> >
> > -if one or the other logs in immediately, all goes well
> >
> > -but if one user logs out and we're back to the login screen, any
> > subsequent attempt to log in fails and all we have is the spinning
> > candy bar forever (the only way to get back to OS X is via the reset
> > button)
> >
> > -also, and even more wierd, if several minutes pass before either user
> > tries to log in after a fresh startup or a restart, the login fails
> > (spinning candy bar again)
> >
> > Permissions are all repaired and I have tried repairing the disk with
> > the Panther installer's disk utility, and I have used DiskWarrior on
> > the drive, too. All is okay with them.
> >
> > How should I go about troubleshooting this issue?

>
> Just guessing here, but I would start by using a cache-cleaner program.
> Also I would consider throwing away
>
> /Library/Preferences/com.apple.loginwindow.plist
> /Library/Preferences/loginwindow.plist
>
> Also I would try starting up in "safe mode" and see whether eliminating
> kexts and startup items in this way has an effect on the problem.


Sorry, I thought of something else - consider doing a clean install. I
know you don't want to hear that, but it can really help.

The problem is that if you use the option to archive and keep old users
and settings, you end up with a blend of old and new material. When
Panther first came out, this caused serious problems because users had
non-Panther-compatible stuff in their Jaguar installations (like the
then current versions of Default Folder X and QuicKeys, both of which
could make Panther unusable - new versions fixed those problems soon
after, of course).

Furthermore you can end up with permissions problems; Fix Permissions
doesn't actually fix permissions (it can only operate on stuff you've
installed via receipt - it can't make sure, for example, that everything
in /Library/Application Support or /Library/Preferences has the right
permissions for that area.

If you do a clean install, then you're starting truly fresh. You can
then restore old material, slowly and carefully, watching permissions as
you go, migrating things from old users into new, clean users whose
permissions and settings are correct to start with.

m.

--
matt neuburg, phd = (E-Mail Removed), http://www.tidbits.com/matt/
AppleScript: The Definitive Guide
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/AS...methingsbymatt
Read TidBITS! It's free and smart. http://www.tidbits.com
 
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Paul Kropp
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Posts: n/a
 
      07-11-2004, 06:02 PM
(E-Mail Removed) (Paul Kropp) wrote in message news:<(E-Mail Removed). com>...
> About a week after upgrading to Panther via archive and install,
> suddenly the login function is (almost) broken on our Cube.
>
> How should I go about troubleshooting this issue?

************************************************** ********

Folks:

Thanks for your suggestons.

Deleting the .plist files did not affect the situation, nor did a safe
boot make any difference.

Then, I recalled that in trying out the new Panther feature "fast user
switching" several days after the Panther install the machine locked
up while the feature was implemented. I think I took a wrong step in
trying to log out for the other user and then hit the reset button.

So today I tried turning this feature on again and seeing if it would
work.

All went well. The function worked as advertised back and forth. I
then logged out or each user properly and shut the Cube down.

Upon reboot it's now possible to use the system normally. Logging out
and logging in to the other user now seems to be working again...
 
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