I do not like Kernel Panic and PRAM, I do not like them Tim I am…

We have a client who has a 17″ Macbook Pro that is about 6 years old and it recently started having Kernel Panic errors on startup. Below is a list of the steps I used to troubleshoot and eventually solve the Kernel Panic errors.

Kernel Panic Warning in Mac OSX

Our client needed to get back up and running, so I tried a few of my standard tricks:

  1. Reset the PRAM (press command + option + P + R at start up). The normal restart chime would go through the PRAM reset and I let it chime 3 times before releasing, but this did not fix the issue and it threw the kernel panic error again during startup.
  2. Restart is Safe Mode (press shift key at start up). It would not start in safe mode and would throw the kernel panic error again during startup.
  3. Restart and boot from the OSX DVD (press C at start up). It would not start up off the DVD and would throw the kernel panic error again during startup.
  4. Restart and run Hardware Diagnostics from the OSX DVD (press D at start up). This would initiate the diagnostics and allow the test to run but would lockup just before finishing the test.
  5. Restart in OSX (press X at start up). This worked once and the laptop made it through start up and I was able to plug in a flash drive and dump all my clients files as well as his email before it locked up again and it was back to trowing the message anytime I tried to restart with any of the above mentioned options.

So much for my standard tricks. Time to try something new. I hit a couple of forums and one suggested that it may be hardware related, specifically the RAM. I had initially thought it could be the logic board failing but was doubting this after I was able to get the random startup and copy files. I had just listed some RAM on ebay that I had pulled out of an old Macbook, so I had what I needed to start the next round of tinkering.

  1. I removed the battery, unscrewed the panel that covers the RAM and replaced the original RAM with the afore mentioned chips that I had. I tried each chip individually and then the complete new set and all resulted in the same outcome. Kernel panic error…
  2. Next, I decided to see if the issue was related to the optical drive. I wasn’t ready to open up the laptop and disconnect the internal drive, so I plugin in an external superdrive. I tried to start up from the OSX DVD but it had the same result as the internal and threw the Kernel Panic error again.
  3. Then I remembered that you can request the option to select your startup disk on restart (press option at startup). I tried this once and it did not work since I had plugged the super drive in while the error was on screen. I restarted a second time while pressing “C” to start from the OSX DVD and amazingly, I saw the OSX install screen appear.
  4. I performed an archive and install, and after about 45 minutes to install the fresh operating system, it restarted on its own and appears to be running normally again.

All told, I have spent a couple hours off and on trying different OSX DVDs, running the diagnostic test a numerous times, but it appears that in the end, the main thing that solved the Kernel Panic errors on startup was the use of an external superdrive.  It bypassed the error and allowed the laptop to startup from the DVD which allowed for a fresh install of the operating system that seems to cleared the Kernel Panic error.

I still plan to re-install the original RAM and test the internal optical drive, but it appears that the problem has been solved. If you have had a similar situation, I hope this helps you learn to like Kernel Panic errors and PRAM. Well, maybe not like them but at least be able to get rid of them 😉

Saucon Rail Trail Map Update

Check out this web site designed by 110. http://sauconrailtrail.org

Converting old, unused railroad lines in Bethlehem PA finally became a reality a few years ago. The Saucon Rail Trail continues to expand and improve, creating a beautiful place to walk, run, bike, or cross-country ski. 110 Front Communications recently updated the map for the site. If you live in the area or come to visit, make sure to take advantage of this community gem.

110Front Designs in the New York Times – Oh yah!

On June 12th, one of our designs ran in the New York Times to promote WhiskyFest New York. Full page back cover of the business section. Pretty cool. We were on vacation when it ran and did not find out it was in until late in the day, so getting a copy was a little tough. Luckily around 9:30pm, I was able to track a few copies at the Acme in Avalon, NJ.

Screen Shot 2013-06-28 at 10.13.21 AM



Two Pillows and a Stump

We have an office. It has a desk, a swivel chair, printers, etc. But Tim refuses to use it. Because he works on a laptop, he tends to work EVERYWHERE but the “office”. Sometimes he sets his laptop down on the console table in the living room and checks his email every couple … let’s be honest: every couple of minutes. It looks like this:


He replies to emails standing up. If it’s a very long email or a quick edit to a file, he’ll crouch. I always give him a hard time. Like, “Hey, do you maybe want a chair?”

Sometimes he will grab a small side table that is made out of a tree stump. Kind of cool as a table but not that comfortable.


Sometimes Tim gets involved in a job that maybe didn’t seem like it was going to get that involved and he’ll break down and grab a pillow off the sofa:


But, today was the first time that I ever saw this:


New Web Site!

And they say “the cobbler’s children have no shoes”.

How do you find time to build a web site for yourself when you’re busy building web sites for everyone else? And maybe you’re asking yourself, how do I have time to market myself when I’m so busy? If you’re busy, that’s a great problem! They say you should promote yourself when you are busy, don’t wait until you’re slow. Make sense, but it’s challenging.

Give us a call, we’ll try to make it easier.