Black screen with movable cursor…

I received a couple of question this month and one of them jumps out; Stuck on a black screen with a movable cursor.

Ok. I think I know what you mean and this is my work around for it (mentioned before in one of my replies in a blog post):

1.) Press enter (background image flashes shortly).

2.) Enter you password (screen is still black).

3.) There is your desktop.

Well. That’s it. Works every time for me. No matter what display connector that I use (HDMI, DVI or VGA).

p.s. You may run into this black screen with movable cursor if your PC failed to wake up, after you’ve used the on/off switch to boot again.

Update: Apple change something in 10.12.3 Beta (16D30a) and as a result the screen is no longer black.


Booting without monitor (cable) attached…

I tried to boot my Skylake setup without a monitor (cable) attached and it failed, up until the moment that I connect the monitor cable. It didn’t even (try to) load the boot loader from the M2 SSD. What I noticed was a flashing cursor at the top left corner, and only then did it load the boot loader from the M2 SSD. This is a serious BIOS bug.

Three questions:

1.) Can you boot (your Skylake setup) without a monitor attached?

2.) If yes, is that with an NVIDIA (or AMD) dGPU or the IGPU?

3.) Do you happen to know a work around for this problem?

Edit: It boots up with the monitor cable attached, even if the monitor is switched off – the BIOS may want to read the EDID and use the power from the DVI cable.

Breaking news…

Tim Cook said that Apple is still committed to the Mac and specifically mentioned the desktop aka iMac. What does this mean for us? Well. I am sitting on a flight right now in the USA – with a couple of other people – and am listening to two people, talking about a new Apple keyboard… with an on-off switch.

Let’s see if this in flight Internet thing works… Ok. Cool. It actualy works.

Edit: the next iPad and iPhone is said to come with some form of wireless charging, and the iMac stand should support that, and work as a two way charger; burst mode for iPhone and iPad, and a slower (normal?) mode for the new keyboard and magic trackpad. They also talked about pairing the TouchID (read our fingerprint) with your Apple ID, so that you can use it anywhere in the world on all supported Mac’s. Though Apple is said to still investigate the legal and privacy implications of it.

Hardware support for TouchID is backed in on the motherboard, just like the new Macbook Pro, and the new keyboards will not work with current Mac models. It can also only power on/off the Mac that it is paired with.

The two people do not believe that the current Mac Pro will be sold in 2017; a new power desktop should replace it, or “the memo to employees” should stop Apple from exploring this path.

Apple is also working on a “Hub” to interact with smart devices in our homes, and it should also work as backup facility and WiFi access point.

It is four people (two are obvious developers) with Apple badges in one and the same plane. Sounds great, but let’s just see if anything actually ends up in our hands 😉


What are they chances that you ever get to meet Apple engineers in an airplane, or anywhere else for that matter, and then they also talk openly about unreleased products. Zero you say. And you are right!

So Pike are you saying that it never happened? Correct! I hereby retract my blog post. I’ll keep it up, but with this note:

We since learned that the people in this airplane were ex-Apple employees. People who started their own company, so that they could design and produce products for Apple customers. They have nothing to do with Apple.

Ok. There you have it. This is the note that I have to post here. Go figure!

Installing updates from sucatalog.gz

We’ve been discussing the CatalogURL a couple of times already, but people seem to have no idea how they should install, say macOS Sierra 10.12.3 from it.

Long story short; you can now find an example in one of my github repositories (HandyScripts).

You can use my script and change it for any of the packages that you would like to install (from the command line). There are three variables (key, url and packages) that you should keep in line with what the used sucatalog.gz is telling you to use. That’s it. Ok. You may want to change the language (distribution) but that’s about it.

Edit: You can cd to /tmp and edit the downloaded .dist file and run:

productbuild --distribution 031-91606.English.dist --package-path 031-91606 installer.pkg

This should create a working installer PKG.

Have fun 😉