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"It just works."

Apple's Genius Bar better brace itself for some upset customers.  Buyers of Apple's pricey, sleek MacBook Pros are finding [Apple Discussions Forum] that their machines lock up and stop responding when you stress them.  The hard freeze, which occurs in OS X, is reportedly non-recoverable, though users can SSH into their frozen systems.

The company recently refreshed its MacBook Pro laptop lineup to feature Intel's new 32 nm Sandy Bridge CPUs and AMD's Radeon 6000 Mobility series GPUs, ditching NVIDIA GPUs (the 13-inch model is now no longer offered with discrete GPU).

While the hardware refresh looks promising, the reports may give potential buyers potential cause to steer clear.  Apple is reportedly aware of the issue, but does not have a fix for it at present and has not publicly commented on it.

Apple often remains silent about its quality issues.  That allows it to maintain an inflated perception of quality among consumers and the press.  

The company heavily sells its systems on claims that they are easier to use than Windows and lack Windows-like problems.

The tendency of its new laptops to freeze up stands in stark contrast to these claims.  Reportedly machines can crash under a variety of scenarios.  Describes one user:

Received a new 15" 2.2/6750M MBP last week and have been having some issues with the machine locking up under load.

For example if I boot up a VM using Fusion the temperature will spike up above 90 degrees and the machine will lock up most of the time. The machine appears locked (cannot move the mouse at all and keyboard is unresponsive). I can SSH into the machine still and it still is running however. This is one example but it will freeze under a number of circumstances where the CPU/GPU load is very high (rendering, DJ Software, compiling so far in my travels).

Another user, back on Apple's official Discussions forum, bemoans:

Great. I'm having the exact same issue. It happens when rendering video in Imovie. The fan comes on and everything freezes. I can do nothing but a hard reset. Now I'm wondering if I should return this $2000 item and wait until all the bugs are fixed. 

Maintaining its image of producing "magical" products has been a struggle of late for the gadget-maker.  While some devices like the iPad 2 pleasantly surprised, the company has received a dose of reality from recent malware attacks.  As it continues to grow its marketshare, it will likely continue to encounter the hardware issues and malicious attacks that have become a fact of life for OS maker Microsoft and its hardware partners.

In that sense, Apple may be a victim of its own image which it has worked so hard to create.

Update: Monday March 21, 2011 6:00 p.m.

Late today Apple rolled out an update to OS X 10.6 "Snow Leopard", which included a number of updated features and fixes.  A special version of the update was crafted for the early 2011 MacBook Pros (discussed in this article).  While ostensibly to fix other issues, many believed that this update would fix the freezing problems.

It appears it did not, at least not for all those afflicted.  Writes one user on the MacRumors forums:

this still does not fix the issues on the new MacBook Pro 2011 models (15" 2.3ghz) - just tested on the two machines we have here. Still they are getting too hot, constantly the fans are blowing (testing with Transmission/Bittorrent downloading the Ubuntu DVD). Also we had two freezes already (only under heavy load). I am posting updates on our findings to our blog ( http://j.mp/dLSqgy ) - and we are still waiting for replacements from apple.

Users are also reporting that the update fails to fix another crucial problem, blackouts when connecting to Apple's 24-inch Cinema Display.  Writes another user:

Still experiencing blackouts. No graphics glitches but definitely got 2 blackouts post update...albeit less frequent. Back to the drawing board i guess.

In fact, the update seemed to cause crashes/freezes when using Apple's iTunes.  Writes one user:

I'm on a new Macbook Air (13" maxxed out) and the update seems to be causing iTunes to freeze the whole system - clock, mouse, keyboard, etc. It happens about 5-6 seconds after I launch iTunes. I can start a song, and it will continue to play after the system locks up, but otherwise I'm stuck with a hard reset. I tried clearing the preference files in \Users\[me]\Library\Preferences, but that didn't help. I repaired disk permissions before and after the update. Any suggestions?

Adds another:

Since the update I've had 3 crashes with iTunes.
2011 15" 2.2 MBP.

Not sure its related to the update, but in the space of just over a year, I've never had a crash with iTunes on MacOS 

In other words, it appears that the update not only failed to fix existing issues, but caused additional ones.


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Derp derp
By Onimuto on 3/22/2011 12:41:36 PM , Rating: 2
Ok , so this is really disturbing.
This has to be worse then console fanboys fighting over if ps3 or xbox360 is better. Of course you have the wii crowd too with sales figures and what not. I see the same here windows versus Mac versus Linux ( even thou Linux guys early post it seems , or they just don't represent they are using Linux).
I read all the post and see all this bickering. " Mac is virus immune" , no it isn't. This whole zomg windows gets 99.9% of all viruses , really 99.9 ?
I never had an feeling of pro or anti mac's till I started to read post on this site more.
Mac people are like the driver of a caddy escalade who thinks there caddy is so much different then a chevy Taheo ltz. Different names same stuff a few cosmetic changed and minimal hardware changes.
As far as a Mac book pro you can spit the quality bid all you wish. The hardware is the same stuff others use. They do like every other company lowest bid wins. Why you think hard drives found in the same 17 inch can range from western digital to seagate.
Price well it is beyond over priced. Over price is charging 10-20% more then others , apple takes the cake with pricing there products 100-200% higher.
17 inch Mac book pro
Intel I-7 sandy bridge 2720
4 gigs DDr3
Amd 6750.
750 gig 5400 rpm
No VGA , no hdmi included in standard setup VGA cost additional 29.99 hdmi 34.95
And why zomg macs had lights peak intels new interface zomg zomg it stumps on usb3.0
No biometric security
Price $2,499
Now I could but won't go to every pc vendor to show prices.
Hp pavilion dv7-t quad edition
Intel I-7 sandy bridge 2720 (basic gives the 2630)
6 gigs DDR3 1333
750 gig hdd
Amd 6770 (basic with 4950)
Blu ray drive
4 USB , VGA, hdmi, e-Sata
Biometric finger print reader
Hd web cam with two mics
17.4 inch screen
Second harddrive bay , raid capable
Beats audio sound with sub woofer
Price $1,279 (basic is 1099)
Hp gives more machine for over $1000 cheaper. Now let's make a pc at same price as Mac here
Now let's looks at one more
Msi Gt680r
Intel I-7 2630
8 gigs DDR 3 1333 ( exspan to 12gigs$
Invida 460m gtx
2x 500 gig 7200 raid 0
720 web cam mic
Blu ray
USB 3
Subwoofer
27 color lights
$1,699
Stomps Mac book pro for hundreds cheaper
I could go on.
You people warship a name brand makin you a stupid
Consumer. I hold no loyalty to any name brand.
I type this now on my 4th iPhone I own since the original iPhone .
I but what technology is best at the time.
The only reason I would consider a Mac is to use the iOS sdk




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