How To Fix MacOS Sierra Beta Blank Screen & Crash After Sleep [Update #3]

In Apple, Fix It, General, How To, HTD Tech Tip, Software by Michael Sheehan73 Comments

I’m always trying to be on the bleeding edge of technology and whenever a beta is available for iOS or MacOS, I love to dive right into it so that I can have a head start on potentially helping others navigate features, functions or issues once the software is released to the public. While I cannot comment on features or functionality of these betas, I do feel that if I find something that help make the experience better for those testing, I want to document it. I have been running MacOS Sierra (10.12 beta 2) for a few days and have been encountering odd freezing and some kernel panics when my MacBook Pro Retina 15” goes to sleep and then tries to wake up.

Note: This article will be/has been updated with more information.

How to Fix MacOS Sierra not waking from sleep


The symptoms were a bit frustrating. If I left my Mac for a while and the screen saver came on and then later the screen went blank due to my Energy Saver preferences, I would come back to my machine, hit the space bar and then wait for the Mac to wake up. Here are a few things I encountered:

  • Cursor would show but nothing else
  • Password field might display but would not be reactive
  • Kernel Panic would happen
  • Mac would spontaneously restart
  • Screen would stay black or blank

To resolve, I had to force-restart my MacBook Pro by holding down the power key (if it didn’t reboot on its own after a kernel panic).

Digging around some of the forums, I found some others talking about the same issue. Some said when this issue occurred, they could remote into their Macs via TeamViewer or Remote Desktop from another device, but it wouldn’t help the actual Mac.

It seemed that it was some sort of issue with the display (adapters or drivers or something related).

How To Fix MacOS Sierra Beta Blank Screen & Crash after Sleep

Here are some of the solutions that worked for some people:

For me, the only Application that I had that matched that list was Avatron Air Display so I decided to uninstall it to see if it would help.

How to Fix MacOS Sierra not waking from sleep - Air Display

There are a few ways to uninstall these apps. You could go to the respective site and search their support to find uninstallation directions. You could use an application uninstaller like CleanMyMac3 (note, you need to download a beta update for it to work on MacOS Sierra) to fully remove traces of an app.

For the Avatron Air Display software, there is an uninstaller located under: Applications > Utilities

How to Fix MacOS Sierra not waking from sleep - uninstall Air Display

So far, I haven’t had any crashes or blank screen issues after doing this fix. If you are encountering this issue and any of these fixes work, please leave a comment. If you have another solution, leave a comment as well.

Update #1 (7/11/16): After several hours without any blank unwake-able screens, I encountered one. So while everything seems to have gotten better by uninstalling Air Display, something else may have been causing issues. So, there were two other things I changed:

  1. Disabled f.lux – since f.lux is an app that magically reduces the blue hue of your screen as it becomes nighttime, I thought that it might make sense to disable the app by quitting it. I also removed it from my login items.
  2. Disabled MacID – since Apple is building in very similar functionality to MacID which automatically locks or unlocks your Mac based on your iPhone or Apple Watch’s proximity to your computer, I decided to quit that app as well. I was hoping to avoid any conflicts.

Update #2 (7/19/16): While I was hoping that the next beta (beta 3) would resolve this issue, unfortunately it has not. I also disabled my anti-virus software (uninstalled it) but that didn’t resolve either. I guess a future beta will hopefully resolve. I’m open to other suggestions.

Update #3 (7/24/16): I haven’t had a crash or kernel panic (knock on wood) since changing some things on my power settings. I turned on “prevent from sleeping when display is off”. My power settings look like this:


Also, be sure to check the comments below as people are leaving some great suggestions!

HTD says: Betas always have bugs. Part of the reason they are released for testing is to help find and resolve!