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Summary:

Jon Buys wrote in letting me know of a little issue he’s having with the new Parental Controls feature of Leopard. He writes in: I enabled the Parental Controls on my new Leopard install, and after letting my kids play Frozen Bubble and browse to Playhouse […]

Leopard Parental Controls
Jon Buys wrote in letting me know of a little issue he’s having with the new Parental Controls feature of Leopard.

He writes in:

I enabled the Parental Controls on my new Leopard install, and after letting my kids play Frozen Bubble and browse to Playhouse Disney for an hour or so I found that the daemon named “parentalcontrolsd” was eating 98-100% of one of my cores (Core 2 Duo MacBook).

Anyone else had this issue with the new Parental Controls? Have certain applications possibly caused the increase in CPU usage?

By Josh Pigford

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  1. I have lost use of dashboard on my admin account after enabling parental controls. there is a thread in the apple support forums where several users are having similar issues. do’nt see the cpu chewing that you are experiencing.

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  2. Yep – have both problems with Leopard – both 100% CPU usage by Parental Controls and then broken Dashboard after enabling it (which is not repaired by disabling it!). Shame Apple didn’t test this feature before release…

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  3. @Paul – Yea, no kidding. Well, that’s what we get for being early adopters. Here’s looking forward to 10.5.1.

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  4. I have all these problems +.
    1) Broken dashboards on non-controlled accounts and some controlled accounts
    2) 100% cpu usage by the parental control deamon
    3) further, on some controlled accounts it doesn’t log out users after the time limits are reached.

    This is like alpha software. They really should have tested this.

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  5. Bill Patterson Sunday, November 11, 2007

    I’m having this problem too. I’m not seeing it on my MacBook Pro, but it’s doing it on my MDD G4 Dual 1Ghz.

    I had initially turned on the option to allow selected applications only, but then turning it off didn’t resolve the 98% CPU usage.

    Any ideas?

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  6. I had to reboot after turning off controls for the process to die. However, that still leaves the broken Dashboard to deal with. This can be partially resolved by deleting the two Dashboard preferences files in ~/Library/Preferences. Doing this restores access to Apple’s default widget set, but leaves use of 3rd party widgets broken.

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  7. [...] not only did it completely ignore the one issue that I was having, 10.5.1 seems to have made the parental controls bug worse. Before the 10.5.1 update, my dashboard was working fine, now, after the update and [...]

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  8. I have the same problem as well. Can any solution to solve this problem?

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  9. Why on earth does Apple offer an “Enable Parental Controls” button for an account but once it has been enabled there is no “Disable Parental Controls” button. What if your child comes of age and you want them to fly free from your Mac nest? What if you simply are getting a giant headache from the issues with Parental Controls described here in this forum and others?

    Very un-Mac-like…

    parentalcontrolsd continues to consume around 99% and sometimes up to 107% (?????) of processor resources on my MacPro Quad. Not sure what to do about it as a reboot does nothing to change this. I also noted crashreport doing something similar but a reboot made that go away. I found the following on Apple Discussions about deleting the daemon but I am not sure what that will do to the rest of the system besides eliminating parental controls completely (use at your peril):

    “You can delete the deamon and then it will not be able to run.
    Look in

    /System/Library/PrivateFrameworks/FamilyControls.framework/Versions/A/Resources

    and delete parentalcontrolsd.

    -sg”

    I also found some reports that an archive and install after an upgrade eliminated the parental controls issue and some dashboard issues.
    I personally performed an upgrade from Tiger to Leopard on my MacPro. If I do not find an answer to this problem I will next attempt the archive and install option.
    More opining:
    Parental Controls in Leopard looks like a beta test package rather than a robust tool for parents to use. If it is this flaky and complex then it will just be ignored by people that can really use it.

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  10. You can fix the CPU issue by disabling fast user switching. Apple has a solution in its database somehere now describing this. However, Parental Controls is still next to useless. I’ve found the website blocking to be very clumsy (eg. you can allow a site, but then it still won’t allow pages within the site) and it seems that limiting access time takes no account of the fact the computer may be asleep. Hopeless. Clearly noone at Apple tried to use Parental Controls.

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