31 Mar

Black Screen after updating to OS X Mavericks 10.9.2

Problem

A few Apple mac’s have been booting to a black screen with the mouse curser and nothing else after updating to Mavericks(10.9.2),.

Cause

It seems to be a problem with a Security update, which isn’t completing the installation procedure and causing the system to hang.

Solution

A reinstall of OS X won’t work, the same as resetting the PRAM, and SMC.

You will need to force the update to complete and then it’ll boot to OS X fine. Make sure the machine is off, and then follow these steps.

  1. Press the power on button, and then straight away hold down the Left Shift key. (the machine will boot to the black screen and the mouse curser again)
  2. Even though you can’t see anything except the curser, type the first letter of the Username for the computer, then press the Tab key once, and then type in the full password for the machine. Press Enter.
  3. After a moment, the loading wheel(spinning beach ball) will appear and then a Mavericks window with the X logo and a loading bar. Let this process complete, and then the machine will boot to the desktop.
  4. Confirm the Machintosh HD is the startup disk.
    • Click System Preferences.
    • Click Startup Disk (found under the System heading).
    • Click on Macintosh HD.
    • Close System Preferences and then restart the machine.
  5. Once it has rebooted to the users desktop, shut down the machine and then reset the PRAM.

Check for updates, and proceed as normal.

Information provided by Danny Harding ACMT

22 Responses to Black Screen after updating to OS X Mavericks 10.9.2

  1. Also login via ssh and killing “windowlogin” process will cure the situation.

  2. You sir, are a lifesaver!!
    Had this exact issue, followed your instructions & got my mac back. Thank you very much & keep giving advice my friend 🙂

  3. Worked like a charm. Thanks for the help

  4. No infortunitely doesn’t work for me, I tried hardly but the same “black screen with cursor” appears again and again ! the only thing I’ve done is : “command + option + P + R” at startup and then go to password screen and then to the OS X install/tools screen, but I tried to check and clean all errors, everything is ok, but no changes.

    Do you have others suggestions for help me ?

    Tks anyway
    Véro :O/

    • Jonathan Brasseur June 2, 2014 at 13:47

      Hi Veronique,

      If you have tried the above and it has not worked then you may need to do a wipe and install. I would advise taking it into your local apple store to do this as they can safely back up your files before doing this.

  5. Many thanks to Danny Harding ACMT . When all seemed lost you have restored my faith in computers as a computer illiterate.
    Cheers
    Caroline

  6. This is a lifesaver. What a great tip. It worked perfectly. I even didnt know the users name so I booted to repair reset password found out their username and it worked. Thanks a million.

  7. Thanks. It worked!

  8. Fantastic helpfull. It saved me and my mac. Thank you very much for your advice

  9. Thanks so much Danny Harding +1. And Google for helping me find this. 🙂

  10. David Yáñez July 13, 2014 at 23:54

    Incredible, even I can not believe it, thank you very much, but worst of all is that there is this security flaw, surely there are many people taking the your computer to a technician .. thanks again, from Spain – Galicia.

  11. Thankkkkkksss sooooooo muchhhh!!!!!!!!!

  12. Awesome. This totally worked for me.

  13. Followed directions. It rebooted presenting home page, but when I went online every movement caused screen flutters? It is unstable now. What should I do?

    • Thanks it works!! The fluttering/flashing problem is also fixable:
      1. Go to system preferences
      2. Select your HD and press Restart

      After this my flashing problem was resolved, but I still had the problem of no audio and a somewhat slow performance, this (and also can fix the flashing problem if previous mentioned solution did not work) is fixed by resetting your PRAM:

      1. Make sure the computer is turned off.
      2. Find the following keys on your keyboard:
      cmd + alt + P + R
      (Some keyboards may show cmd as an Apple and alt as option.)
      3. Turn on the Mac and hold down all 4 keys at the same time.
      4. Keep them held down until you hear the startup chime for the second time.

      Good as new!

  14. This works and thanks for sharing this info

  15. thank you for posting this, it fixed my machine!!

  16. Worked for me! Thank you very much!!

  17. I forgot one step in the restart solution:

    Thanks it works!! The fluttering/flashing problem is also fixable:
    1. Go to system preferences
    2. Go to ‘start up disk’
    3. Select your HD and press Restart

    After this my flashing problem was resolved, but I still had the problem of no audio and a somewhat slow performance, this (and also can fix the flashing problem if previous mentioned solution did not work) is fixed by resetting your PRAM:

    1. Make sure the computer is turned off.
    2. Find the following keys on your keyboard:
    cmd + alt + P + R
    (Some keyboards may show cmd as an Apple and alt as option.)
    3. Turn on the Mac and hold down all 4 keys at the same time.
    4. Keep them held down until you hear the startup chime for the second time.

    Good as new!

  18. Awesome…saved this Prof’s day! After successful login, re-ran software updates all the way through (had a security update waiting) and repaired permissions via Disk Utility. Thanks so much!

  19. I’m glad I found this but I am disappointed that I had to go through the steps for a Macintosh.

  20. Thank you!!! You saved me from a headache. Much appreciated!

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