Software // Enterprise Applications
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12/7/2007
12:23 PM
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Apple Leopard Users Hit With 'Green Screen Of Death'

The glitch may be caused by graphics card drivers not optimized for Mac OS X 10.5.

Computer users are suffering from a rainbow of problems. Beyond the well-known "blue screen of death" that's long afflicted Microsoft Windows, reports emerged earlier this week that Vista has a tendency to display a purple variant.

Now, Apple Leopard users say their systems have taken to randomly flashing the color green.

A poster to Apple's support forum named "Matthew Hickey1" recently reported that his Leopard-based PowerBook displays the green flashes whenever he tries to close applications. "No, I haven't been drinking or taking drugs," he emphasized.

Numerous follow-up posts indicate that the problem isn't unique to Hickey's machine. Other users of Leopard, officially known as Mac OS X 10.5, say they've experienced the weird green flashes. Apple support forum member "bob812" likens them to "a strobing effect."

So far, Apple does not appear to have a fix for the issue. "I was on the phone with support for three hours trying to resolve the problem but no luck," wrote "DJS223."

Some users suspect that the glitch may be due to graphics card manufacturers not having properly tweaked their drivers to run with Leopard, which has been on the market for less than two months. "People with a lot of different graphics chipsets are getting display corruption," noted "dparm."

The problem is the latest example of the kind of frustrations computer users often experience when migrating to a new operating system. Earlier this week, researchers at technology tracking firm Neosmart reported that some Windows Vista users have been hit with a so-called "purple screen of death" -- a situation in which windows on the desktop turn lavender and unresponsive.

It's impractical for OS manufacturers like Apple and Microsoft to test their software with thousands of third party products prior to release, so many fixes come in the form of post-release patches or service packs.

Microsoft on Wednesday released a nearly final version of the first major service pack for Vista. Last month, Apple released an update to Leopard designed to fix more than two dozen bugs.

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