10.9.3 causing headaches for Mac Pro users

2013MacProSome Mac Pro users have noticed that after updating their systems to OS X 10.9.3, their systems are showing significant graphical artifacts that can impact their work in video editing software packages, especially when exporting video files.

For affected systems, in some cases pink and green lines may be embedded in exported video files, and in other cases the exporting process may stall out and not complete properly. Either way, this issue appears to be a compatibility problem with the drivers for the AMD video chipset in the new Mac Pro, and various popular video editing software packages.

This issue is being looked into by Apple engineers, so a fix may be supplied soon in a supplemental update to OS X 10.9.3. Meanwhile, there are several things you can do to work around this problem.

  1. Use Software renderingWhile this may take a while longer to do, if your video editing program supports software rendering during exporting, then use this as it will avoid the use of the GPU and result in a proper video file. Unfortunately the trade-off here is that this will take significantly longer to export the file. Consult your program’s developer or help documentation to see if this is a feature.
  2. Restore 10.9.2 from a backup.
    Hopefully you have created a Time Machine backup before updating to OS X 10.9.3, in which case you can use Apple’s Recovery tools to restore to the most recent backup you created. This should only take a couple of hours at most, but then should give you the bug-free functionality of the prior OS X version.
  3. Reinstall OS XIf you do not have a backup, then you can boot to the Recovery HD partition and then reinstall OS X. This will start you from the version of OS X Mavericks that came with your Mac, and then allow you to update to version 10.9.2 using Apple’s standalone Combo updater. Do not use Software Update, as this will reinstall the problematic 10.9.3 version.

5 thoughts on “10.9.3 causing headaches for Mac Pro users

  1. Strod

    So… What Mac Pro models are affected by this? Only the awesome little trash bins (not meant in a derogatory way, I love them), only the old tower models, or both?

    And why aren’t other Macs with AMD chipsets not affected?

  2. A Mac User

    Note that, if you’re booted from a RAID disk set, you won’t have a recovery partition to boot from as it’s not available with RAID boot disks.

  3. Terence Koh

    Its not just mac pros. My macbook pro with amd graphics card is also showing artifacts

  4. B. Jefferson Le Blanc

    Wow, two buggy updates in a row. First it was iTunes 11.2, now it’s OS X 10.9.3. It seems Apple no longer tests their updates before offering them to an unsuspecting public. And this is hardly the first buggy OS X update – they go back at least as far as OS X 6 Snow Leopard. Quality control appears to be a lost art at Apple these days – or at least a deficient one.

  5. Vicky d'Orey

    I have problems with 10.9.3, a slow computer, specially when i open Mail, and sometimes I cant’t see any videos. How can I reinstall the system??

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