More Adventures With the macOS High Sierra Install

2 minute read
| Analysis
High Sierra GM Candidate

macOS High Sierra has been a generally smooth upgrade for the author.

My last report on High Sierra was just over a week ago.

Since then, I have some items to report on.

Screen Saver

Previously, I reported a graphics lockup/freeze on my 2013 Mac Pro when I loaded up the Cosmos directory in /Library/Screen Savers/Default Collections with extra images, That happened after 6-12 hours.

I removed most of the astronomy files until only nine remained, the largest of which is 2.5 MB. (Many of Apple’s default images in other directories are much larger.) I still got the lockup, and the only way out was to restart with the power button.

I also previously reported that the “Nature Patterns” screen saver had no problems. I spoke too soon. Those images also resulted in a graphics lockup after 6-12 hours—or overnight. As a test, I reverted to one of the standard, simple screensavers, “Shell.” That animated screen saver has been in use for a week without any problems.

The Shell screen saver.

SImple, built-in screen savers haven’t caused a problem.

There was never, never a problem with the Aerial, National Geographic, Cosmos and Nature Patterns in macOS 10.12 Sierra. I haven’t yet found any definitive discussion about this change from Sierra to High Sierra. That said, macOS screen saver freezes seem to be a thing. See: “How to Fix a Stuck Screen Saver in OS X

Time Machine

In High Sierra, I get an interesting (and alarming) notice that my next backup will occur when the disk is connected. (See image below.) But it already is! And backups continue normally, as scheduled. So that would suggest no simple, obvious USB connection issue. (Yes, I checked the cable.) But see below.

Time Machine message in error.

One can only say: WTF

I discovered that unchecking and rechecking the “Back Up Automatically” checkbox fixes the wording, but, as I said, there’s no impact on the actual operation of Time Machine.

Time Machine with standard message.

This is how it should look.

This may be a 2013 Mac Pro issue. I only found one reference to this problem. I haven’t found a fix, and I’m not planning right now to reformat the TM drive and start over until I know more. Especially since backups are continuing on schedule.

Boot Spinner

I previously mentioned that I had not experienced the Boot Spinner in High Sierra. Again, I spoke too soon. A few days ago, after a reboot, the spinning beach ball just wouldn’t release the Finder to me. I waited 15 minutes and then did a restart with the Mac’s power button. The Mac came back up normally, and I resumed work.

It hasn’t been a persistent problem, having only happened once. Because I’m running a simpler screen saver now, I haven’t had to reboot very much at all. My uptime now stands at 5 days, 9 minutes.

Sound Input

High Sierra continues its wonky habit, like previous releases of macOS, of maxing out the sound input level even after you set it where you want it.  I have to check that before every podcast. One would think this would get fixed in a fix-up release like High Sierra. C’mon Apple.

Sound input level.

Sound input level doesn’t stay where put. Always reverts to max.

The Good News

So far, these are the only items I have to report. The upgrade from Sierra to High Sierra was very smooth and all my mission critical apps, including those for podcasting (from Rogue Amoeba), are working great.

If you have something to report, please let me know in the comments below. Feedback from 2013 Mac Pro users is especially welcome because this Mac has a history of idiosyncratic issues with macOS.

3 Comments Add a comment

    • John Martellaro

      decafjava: Thanks for the report. It seems there’s a real, fixable bug here. I’ll update the article if I hear more.

  1. SteveZ67

    I have the same Time Machine issue with my 2015 MBP. Always backs up, and the odd text is fixed by unchecking then rechecking “Backup automatically.” But next time I check preferences the odd text is back.

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