Ran into a situation earlier today where my MacBook Pro took what I thought was an inordinate amount of time to install the Mac OS X 10.6.6 combo updater. During installation, the progress bar seemed to be non-responsive. After a half hour had passed, I was tempted to abort the installation. Before taking such a radical step, however, I opened up Console to look for clues. I found the following log message:
1/16/11 5:28:51 PM installd Package Authoring Warning: Will not do obsoleting for package com.apple.pkg.update.subasesystem.10.6.6.combo because it contains unsafe bundles.
Unsafe bundles? That sounded ominous. I wondered what that could be, as I had sucessfully installed the same 1.0 gb combo updater on another Mac without a problem.
I researched the Apple Discussion Boards and found several cases where users were having problems with Mac OS X 10.6.6 or its installer:
Topic: Frozen 5 times after 10.6.6 update
“I installed the upgrade and my iMac has locked up three times in the past two hours. Spinning beachball while using Firefox.”
Topic: Frozen OS 10.6.6 update install
“I routinely did my system update this morning and started the OS 10.6.6 update. 3/4 of the way through writing files it stopped. It hasn’t moved in almost two hours.”
I regularly clone the boot drive on my MacBook Pro using SuperDuper, so I wouldn’t have been offline for an extended period if I chose to abort the OS X installation and restore from backup. Of course, I would prefer to avoid such a course of action.
I decided to take a dinner break. When I returned, I noticed that the installation had progressed to a different step and the estimated time to complete had changed. The installer wasn’t frozen, after all. I preoccupied myself by testing some newly installed apps on my iPhone.
Finally, my laptop greeted me with a reassuring message that the installation had finished! I restarted in safe mode and repaired permissions. I then restarted normally and held my breath. It took more time than usual to see the login window. I entered my login credentials and crossed my fingers. The Finder worked flawlessly. Apps opened without difficulty. Life was sweet again!