gfxCardStatus ‘One Time Wonder’ In Halting OS X BSOD ‘Superbug’

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After further continued testing it appears that most users suffering from the OS X BSOD ‘Superbug’ can only use the ‘Integrated only’ option once – after which, upon restart of the machine, selecting the ‘Integrated only’ option again, results in a unusable garbled display.

To compound the misery of MacBook Pro mid-2010 users, gfxCardStatus also seems to be having a problem with functioning correctly after a reboot, becoming somewhat of a ‘One Time Wonder’.

The issue has been brought to the attention of the developer who has cited that the defective hardware shipped with some MacBook Pros is also causing issues with the gfxCardStatus program.  It must be emphasised that this is very unlikely to be a gfxCardStatus problem and it is very likely that defective drivers / hardware in some MacBook Pros are causing gfxCardStatus to exhibit this strange behaviour.

So, where does that leave us now?  Well, there are still several possibilities to investigate.  Some applications have been reported to be installed prior to the persistent kernel panics (OS X BSOD) starting.  So although obviously a hardware / software defect, there is the possibility that some third party software could be ‘triggering’ the defect that was previously unseen.

The solution provided by the gfxCardStatus developer to downgrade to v2.1 didn’t work on our test machine, with the same garbled screen after selecting ‘Integrated only’ upon a machine reboot.  The developer of gfxCardStatus has however said that they are looking into a solution for MacBook Pro 2010 model users, to allow gfxCardStatus to continue working after a reboot – which will be good news when it is released.

A number of programs, software and updates have been identified as possible ‘triggers’ to the OS X BSOD and kernel panic problem, where in some cases, removing the mentioned programs, software and / or updates has resolved the issue completely – i.e. apparently removed the trigger.

We’ve currently extended our tests to include removing some of the software and updates mentioned to investigate this possibility and we will report back to you on this later on in the day.

Furthermore, it has been claimed that nVidia have to some extent disclaimed responsibility for the problems as it is alleged that they had no involvement in the drivers for their graphics cards on the Lion operating system.  This has yet to be confirmed directly with the company however.

A number of third party software ‘triggers’ are now being investigated by us, including the recent 10.7.4 update for Lion.

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