Sunday, November 21, 2010

OS X Finder freezes when browsing folder with TIFF files

Problem been reported that finder stop responding when trying to list folder with big TIFF files. Requires relaunch finder to browse correctly till next folder. Very annoying especialy when you copying at the same time and restarting finder stop all finder operations (copying,moving etc).
Seen on Mac Pro (mid 2010) and some latest iMacs.

Symptoms: When you opening folder with .tiff files in Icon view (in other view modes seems works fine) finder shows few preview icons and only placeholders of other previews and stop responding. If you look on activity monitor you will see CPU at 100%! You can wait endlessly at it will not start responding until relaunch.

Reinstalling system doesn't solve the problem. If connect disk to another computer it browse same folder fine. Disk check also not show any problems in filesystem. Problem is in hardware to be more concrete - CPU. As I discovered its Hyper Threading related bug. Seem that Snow Leopard`s finder use algorithm that treats HT incorrectly to render tiff previews. So we need just to disable Hyper threading.

Solution: I searched for CPU control utility for Mac OS and found only X-code processor panel. You need to install X-code - from your installation DVD that comes with your Mac or you can download its free form site. After installation on your system disk will be new folder - "Developer" there go to Extras->Preferences Panes->Processor Pane - start it to install to your preferences. After that you will be able to control your CPU features - look to your system preferences - you will see processor entry. Click on it and on the panel uncheck HT box. Now you may safely browse your folders without being afraid that finder hangs. Even more - some programes e.g. Photoshop will work faster!

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