The content of this blog is my personal opinion only. Although I am an employee - currently of Imagination Technologies's MIPS group, in the past of other companies such as Intellectual Ventures, Intel, AMD, Motorola, and Gould - I reveal this only so that the reader may account for any possible bias I may have towards my employer's products. The statements I make here in no way represent my employer's position, nor am I authorized to speak on behalf of my employer. In fact, this posting may not even represent my personal opinion, since occasionally I play devil's advocate.

See http://docs.google.com/View?id=dcxddbtr_23cg5thdfj for photo credits.

Wednesday, May 06, 2015

MacBook doesn't like surprises: UCB and display problems

Effing MacBook:

As usual, when I disconnect at home and come to work, I waste 15-30 minutes trying to get my displays and keyboard and trackball working.  If it was always the same problem I might have figured out a workaround - but the problem changes in a minor way.

Today, the problem was that when I plugged in at work, my external monitors worked, but my laptop LCD monitor was not working.  Black.  Not reported by System Preferences => Displays.

(Usually it is one or both of the external monitors that do  not work. And/or the USB keyboard and trackball.  But today it is different.)

Various attempts to fix, like unplugging the external monitors, going to sleep, etc., do not help.  Unplugging external monitors and going to sleep  / waking up[ => a laptop with a blank screen.

So, as usual, I rebooted.

At the moment, I am rebooting my MacBook once or twice a day.  Usual;l;y to try to get a display to work, or to get my USB keyboard and trackball working.

Note that I say "both" external displays above.   I only have two external displays, a 30" HDMI, and a USB BVU195 display adapter.   On Windows I used to have 3 or 4 external displays, as well as my laptop LCD.  Not so on the MacBoo.

I expected the Mac to handle multiple displays better that Windows?  Not in my experience! :-(

(MacBook Pro 15" retina Mid-2014)


I wonder if these problems are related to "surprise" disconnects - disconnecting from USB and external monitors without doing something to Mac OS-X first.   Windows used to have problems with such surprise disconnects circa 2000, perhaps Macs are just behind.  But I can't find any way to tell MacOS "I am about to disconnect you now".