System reliabilityEdit

Created , updated

I keep an involuntary reboot log as a gauge of system reliability. Here are some historical notes.

Most machines seem to average around 20 days between failures.

My best machine was my second MacBook Air, with 42 days between failures.

My worst machine was my first MacBook Air, with 19 days between failures (we discount that loaner laptop because I only had it for a few days).

I try to keep my machines in good shape, refrain from overloading them with dubious crap, and in general treat them very gently. I’m kind of disappointed that the general trend hasn’t been towards higher reliability over the years.

First Intel iMac

  • Last log entry: Involuntary Reboot Log #60
  • Kernel panics: 27
  • Hard resets: 33
  • Total failures: 60
  • Start of recording keeping: 21 May 2006
  • Total days: 1364 days
  • Average time between failures: 22.73 days

27" iMac

  • Last log entry: Involuntary Reboot Log 2.16
  • Kernel panics: 9
  • Hard resets: 7
  • Total failures: 16
  • Start of recording keeping: 17 March 2010
  • Total days: 321 days
  • Average time between failures: 20.0625 days

First MacBook Air (Causes)

  • Last log entry: Involuntary Reboot Log 3.37
  • Failure type: hard reset
  • Kernel panics: 7
  • Hard resets: 30
  • Total failures: 37
  • Start of recording keeping: 14 March 2011
  • Total days: 707 days
  • Average time between failures: 19.11 days

Second MacBook Air (Causes)

  • Last log entry: Involuntary Reboot Log 4.7
  • Failure type: hard reset
  • Kernel panics: 3
  • Hard resets: 4
  • Total failures: 7
  • Start of recording keeping: 6 March 2013
  • Total days: 293 days
  • Average time between failures: 41.86 days

Third MacBook Air (temporary loaner)

  • Last log entry: Involuntary Reboot Log 5.1
  • Failure type: hard reset
  • Kernel panics: 0
  • Hard resets: 1
  • Total failures: 1
  • Start of recording keeping: 1 January 2014
  • Total days: 2 days
  • Average time between failures: 2 days

Fourth MacBook Air (Facebook)

I split the data for this machine into two segments, because it had a shell swap partway through its life in order to replace a dummy dislay port (ie. the motherboard including all storage got tranplanted into another case; note that it was still in some sense the same machine, with the same software and OS install).

First generation

  • Last log entry: Involuntary Reboot Log 6.17
  • Failure type: hard reset
  • Kernel panics: 1
  • Hard resets: 16
  • Total failures: 17
  • Start of recording keeping: 21 January 2014
  • Total days: 462 days
  • Average time between failures: 27.18 days

Second generation

  • Last log entry: Involuntary Reboot Log 7.4
  • Failure type: hard reset
  • OS version: 10.11
  • Kernel panics: 1
  • Hard resets: 3
  • Total failures: 4
  • Start of recording keeping: 2 June 2015
  • Total days: 140 days
  • Average time between failures: 35.0 days

MacBook Pro

  • No failures so far.

Note: This is the machine I’m currently using, so I’ll update this later (and no later than moving on to a new machine).