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Frozen Mac | How to Fix a Frozen Mac (Multiple cases) [MiniTool]

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Overview:

Is your application freezing your Mac computer? Are you stuck on the Spinning Pinwheel of Death (SPOD) while using your Mac? Has your mouse or keyboard stopped working on your Mac? All of these situations can be classified as “Mac Frozen”. MiniTool software will show you some solutions in this article to help you fix a Mac that is not responding.

Mac is unresponsive: are you worried about this?

A frozen Mac is a rare problem. But that doesn't mean that this problem won't happen to you. Whether you are using an iMac / iMac Pro or a MacBook Air / MacBook Pro, you are likely to encounter this issue. If your Mac is not responding, do you know how to fix it?

Depending on the different situations the Mac is not responding in, the solutions will vary. In this article, we are going to show you some Mac frozen cases as well as some effective methods to fix a frozen Mac.

Different cases of frozen Mac

  1. Spinning Pinwheel of Death
  2. Your Mac computer is not responding
  3. Your mouse or keyboard cannot move
  4. Malware is attacking your Mac

Case 1: Spinning Pinwheel of Death

The spinning wind turbine is a variation of the cursor arrow. It is used in Apple's macOS and indicates that the currently working application is busy. Spinning Pinwheel of Death (SPOD) means that the application is unresponsive and the pinwheel keeps turning and turning. Yes, an application freezes your Mac. This is the most common problem with Mac freezing.

In this case, you can move your mouse, but you will not be able to close the freezing application by clicking the close button in the upper left corner of the application. If you find yourself in this situation, you can do one of these things to resolve the problem:

How to Fix a Frozen App on Mac?

  1. Force quit the app
  2. Restart your Mac computer
  3. Update your software

Solution 1: Force quit the app

You can click on the Apple menu and Quit imediately choose. Then you will see the interface Quit programs immediately (You can also use the Command-Option-Esc keyboard shortcut to Quit programs immediately to call). Next, you need to select the frozen application and click on it Quit imediately click to close it.

Tip: This post will show you more methods to force quit an application on Mac: How to Force Quit Mac | 4 ways to force quit an application on Mac.

Solution 2: restart your Mac computer

If the above method can't help you exit the frozen app, you can simply restart your Mac by going to Apple menu> Restart walk. The application will be closed during the process.

Solution 3: update your software

An outdated macOS or app can also cause a spinning pinwheel of death. To rule out this possibility, you can update both your macOS and your software to see if the problem can be resolved.

1. Update the MacOS:

Go to Apple menu > System settings > Software update. Another method is that Apple menu > About this Mac > Software update to call.

2. Update the software you downloaded from the App Store:

Go to Apple menu > App Store > Updates.

Case 2: your Mac computer is not responding

Another situation is that your Mac is not responding. Many factors can cause this problem such as low free hard drive space, insufficient RAM, hard drive failure, old Mac, etc.

How to Fix a Frozen Mac This part shows you some effective methods. Whether your MacBook Air is frozen, MacBook Pro is unresponsive, or iMac is unresponsive, you can use these methods to fix your device.

How to Fix an Unresponsive Mac

  1. Force restart your Mac
  2. Remove all peripheral devices
  3. Free up storage space
  4. Repair Mac Hard Drive
  5. Upgrade RAM
  6. Start your Mac in Safe Mode
  7. Replace your old Mac computer

Solution 1: force restart your Mac

Restarting your Mac can fix some temporary issues that could freeze your Mac. Since your Mac is not responding this time, you'll need to force restart it.

Way 1:

The straightforward and easiest method is to hold down the power button for a while until your Mac shuts down. Then you can press the power button again to start your Mac.

Way 2:

You can also use the keyboard shortcut Control command hold down while pressing the On / Off button Press to force restart the Mac.

Tip: If you're using an iMac, the power button is on the back of your Mac.

Solution 2: remove all peripheral devices

The connected peripherals may not be compatible with your macOS. You can unplug any peripherals to see when your Mac computer can get back to normal.

How to fix this problem that external hard drive freezes computer when plugged in? In this post, we are going to introduce a few solutions, and you can choose one so that you can get out of this problem.

Solution 3: free up disk space

There may be less free space available on your Mac, causing your Mac to run slowly with almost no response. So, you need to free up some space on your Mac.

Solution 4: repair Mac hard drive

If the above methods don't work for you, then you need to consider whether there is something wrong with the hard drive. You can use the snap-in tool, Disk Utility, to repair the hard drive.

First you need to force close and then restart your Mac. If the computer can start normally, you should not do anything other than finder > Programs > Utilities to choose to open this tool. Then select the drive that you want to repair and click First aidto start the diagnostic process.

This tool can search for your drive and automatically fix the error found on it.

Bonus: How to Recover Data from Mac Computer?

There should be a lot of important files on your Mac computer's hard drive. If you accidentally lose some of them, do you want to get them back? If so, then you can use Stellar Data Recovery for Mac free Mac data recovery software to give it a try.

In the past, recovering data from a dead MacBook might be a difficult task for you, but from now on it won't be.

This software has a trial version. You can use it to scan the drive where the lost data was previously saved and then see if you can find the files you need based on the scan results. You can go to the MiniTool Official Download Center to download this software and install it on your Mac computer.

Then, you can follow this guide to get your Mac data back:

1. Open Stellar Data Recovery for Mac.

2. On the interface Select What To Recover you can select the types of data you want to recover and click on Next click to continue.

3. On this interface, the software will ask you to select the drive you want to restore from. If you also want to perform a deep scan, you can use the button Deep scan (in the lower left corner of the software).

4. Click Scan to start scanning the drive.

5. After scanning, you can see that the scan results are categorized into three types: Classic List, File List and Deleted List. You can just choose a type depending on your situation. For example, if you just want to recover the deleted files, you can go to the Deleted List section to find the files you need.

You can also preview the scanned files by double-clicking a file.

If you can find the files you want to rescue after checking the scan results, you can upgrade this software to a full version. After that, you can select your needed files and then restore them to a convenient location (this location should not be the original path of the files, otherwise the lost files will be overwritten and cannot be recovered).

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You can visit MiniTool's official website to choose a suitable edition according to your needs.

However, if your Mac computer's hard drive fails and the machine is not bootable, you will need to use the Bootable Edition of Stellar Data Recovery for Mac to rescue your files. This article may be helpful: What to do if your MacBook won't start (Various methods)

Solution 5: update RAM

Another reason your Mac is frozen is because it doesn't have enough Random Access Memory (RAM). In a situation like this, having a lot of work to do is a huge burden on your Mac. The best way to get rid of this problem is to upgrade RAM.

Learn how to choose an appropriate RAM based on your MacBook model and how to install new RAM in this official Apple post: MacBook Pro: How to Remove or Install Memory. This post will show you how to do this task on iMac: Install memory in the iMac.

Solution 6: Start your Mac in Safe Mode

Booting Mac Safe Mode can also find and solve problems on your computer.

  1. Now that your Mac has stopped responding, you'll need to force shut it down by using the Power button Press and hold for a while until the device shuts down.
  2. Press the Power button and hold the at the same time Shift key pressed.
  3. When you see the login screen, you can release the Shift key.
  4. Sign in to your Mac.
  5. You may see the login screen twice. That is normal. Then you will see a red Safe Boot in the top right corner of the screen.
  6. After accessing Safe Mode, you can operate your Mac to check if it can function normally. If so, this problem should be resolved. You can restart your Mac for confirmation.

Solution 7: replace your old Mac computer

If all of the above methods fail to fix your frozen Mac, then consider using an old Mac.

How old is an old Mac?

  • If you're using an iMac, an 8 year old Mac should be old enough.
  • If you are using a Mac laptop, a 5 year old laptop should be old enough.

If your Mac computer is too old, there is no point in repairing the computer. You'd better replace it with a new one.

Case 3: Your mouse or keyboard cannot move

If you can't move your mouse and keyboard, you can press and hold the power button for a while to forcibly close the Mac. After a few seconds, you can press the power button again to start your Mac computer, and then see if you can use your mouse and keyboard normally again.

Case 4: Your Mac is attacked by malware

This situation rarely occurs. But you shouldn't ignore this situation.

For example, when you visit a website, a phishing scam can redirect you from a legitimate website to a fake website and then tell you that a virus has attacked your computer. The scammer offers you Mac Defender "anti-virus" software to remove what is known as the virus. This software is Mac Defender malware. Here is a guide on how to remove this malware: How to Avoid or Remove Mac Defender Malware in Mac OS X 10.6 or Earlier.

Conclusion

After reading this post, you should know what frozen Mac situation you are facing and how to fix it using various methods. Additionally, if you need to recover your lost Mac data, then you can try Stellar Data Recovery for Mac.

If you have other related issues, feel free to let us know in the comment. You can also send us an email at [email protected]. We will answer you as soon as possible.

Frozen Mac FAQ

How do I boot my Mac into recovery mode?
  1. Press the Power button while holding Command-R.
  2. Release these two buttons when you see an Apple logo, spinning globe, or other home screen.
  3. When prompted, you will need to enter your password and then enter Mac Recovery Mode.
How do I fix death black screen on my iMac?
Is It Bad to Force Shut Down Your Mac?
Forcing your Mac to shutdown can damage the files you are currently using. The changes you made to your working document are not saved. So you'd better not do this unless you have no other choice.
Is it better to put the Mac to sleep or shut it down?
If you don't plan to use your Mac for more than a day or two, you can shut it down. However, if you only want to use it hours later, you can just put it to sleep. Also, you should shut down your Mac at least once a month to clean up the temporary files on the device.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

PennyFollow us

Position: Columnist

She joined the MiniTool family in 2018. After that, she focuses on data recovery and disk management. Over the two years she has written many good posts and helped users get out of their data recovery and computer management problems.

In addition to knowledge of computer tricks, she is also interested in foreign languages, especially Japanese and Korean. She also likes animated films and feature films very much. "Good morning ... Oh, and if we don't see each other, good afternoon, good evening and good night!" Is her favorite movie quote.