2006 Mac Pro + NEC 3090 - grey screen not displayed during boot

I have a September '06 Mac Pro 1,1 (Woodcrest variant) hooked up to an NEC 3090 30" LCD monitor, running OS X 10.5.7. Previously, I was using an Eizo S2110W 21" LCD; turning the monitor and computer on would cause the following to be displayed (in order):
1. Light grey background with dark grey Apple logo with spinning thing.
2. Solid blue background.
3. Leopard wallpaper.
4. Log-in dialogue.
Since using the NEC, the grey screen is not displayed at all: the display stays blank until the blue screen is displayed, and then the Leopard wallpaper and so on. This is using the 2560x1600 native resolution of the display, and has occurred using both 10.5.6 and 10.5.7.
If I change the resolution to 1280x960 and boot, the grey screen is displayed. If I change it to 1600x1200, I get weird corruption on-screen during the period when the grey screen should be displayed; for some reason, this includes part of the desktop wallpaper I was using before I rebooted.
Resetting the non-volatile RAM using Command-Option-P-R works for the very first time I boot the computer, though the grey screen is displayed at very low resolution. If I reboot from the log-in dialogue immediately afterwards, normal behaviour occurs - i.e. the blank screen.
The upshot of all of the above is that if I want to boot into Windows, or install OS X (e.g. when Snow Leopard comes out), I have to remember to boot into my existing OS X installation, change resolution, reboot whilst remembering also to hold down the ALT/Option key. It would be much easier if I could do away with having to change resolution.
I have tried connecting the monitor to a PPC Mac mini at 1600x1200 (it won't go any higher), using Tiger 10.4.11 (not sure of exact version - the latest). At this resolution, the grey screen is displayed.
Using a '08 MacBook Air (first generation) and the supplied DVI adapter, also at 1600x1200, nothing is displayed on the NEC until I get to the log-in screen. This occurs if the NEC is set to be the primary display or the secondary one - the only difference is where the log-in dialogue is displayed. I am not familiar with dual-screen behaviour, so I can't say whether anything is supposed to be displayed or not (i.e. does the grey appear on both displays?).
I have been in touch with NEC Europe support on this issue, who suggested it might have something to do with the 10.5.7 release. I know this not to be the case, as it was occurring prior to 10.5.7 being released.
Any ideas?

Put more of your hardware listed in your profile.
I looked and don't see you list your graphics card anywhere.
Graphic card it came with was either X1900 (watch for heat and dust bunnies and clogged vent);
OEM 7300GT (seems unlikely).
You could have replaced either with 8800GT or ATI 3870.
Require 10.5.2+ ideally 10.5.6+.
Some problems cropped up with 10.5.7. 10.5.7 doesn't work on some (many) 3rd party displays and stay with 10.5.6 if necessary until it is fixed or resolved.
But you say it happens with 10.5.6 also, and was doing so before 10.5.7? which makes your problem somewhat different or unique.
Zapping PRAM or NVRAM reset obviously shouldn't be needed repeatedly. And your graphics card probably needs to be replaced, or test with another card to rule it out.

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    Read our privacy statement online:
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    0x4469bac8 : 0x2ceabf (0x6bd9e0 0xbaf978 0xe 0x6bd989)
    0x4469bb78 : 0x2e5564 (0x4469bba0 0x4469bb88 0x4469bb98 0x22cbbb)
    0x4469bb98 : 0xbaf978 (0xe 0x44690048 0xff1b0010 0x10)
    0x4469bc38 : 0x1547167 (0x8ad2c04 0x7eb6004 0xff00000 0x7eb6004)
    0x4469bc58 : 0x153e35c (0x7eb6004 0x8feab04 0x0 0xff00000)
    0x4469bc88 : 0xcb6c56 (0x7eb6004 0x9465004 0x4469bca0 0x0)
    0x4469bd38 : 0xd27c8a (0x7eb6004 0x9465004 0x8971c14 0xff)
    0x4469bdc8 : 0xd2933e (0x7eb6004 0x8a97c04 0x0 0x0)
    0x4469be28 : 0xd2b46a (0x7eb6004 0x8a97c04 0x8 0x2)
    0x4469be58 : 0x1562269 (0x7eb6004 0x8a97c04 0x0 0x0)
    0x4469be88 : 0xd2b589 (0x7eb6004 0x8a97c04 0x0 0x0)
    0x4469bed8 : 0xb9eb05 (0x7eb6004 0x0 0x0 0x0)
    0x4469bf68 : 0xb5362c (0x7eb6004 0x1 0x7c637f0 0x7c63be8)
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          Kernel Extensions in backtrace:
             com.apple.NVDAResman.G7xxx(7.0.4)[6581C9F3-3221-4530-BEB4-627CB8D602AE]@0xb4c00 0->0xe41fff
                dependency: com.apple.iokit.IOPCIFamily(2.7)[8087C029-833E-4B62-A8C3-2B074B4C55F7]@0xade000
                dependency: com.apple.iokit.IONDRVSupport(2.3.4)[393829BA-614C-4ED7-B4AD-CE577A41C683]@0xb3 b000
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                dependency: com.apple.NVDAResman.G7xxx(7.0.4)[6581C9F3-3221-4530-BEB4-627CB8D602AE]@0xb4c00 0
    BSD process name corresponding to current thread: kernel_task
    Mac OS version:
    11G63
    Kernel version:
    Darwin Kernel Version 11.4.2: Thu Aug 23 16:26:45 PDT 2012; root:xnu-1699.32.7~1/RELEASE_I386
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    com.microsoft.driver.MicrosoftMouseUSB          8.2
    com.microsoft.driver.MicrosoftMouse          8.2
    com.microsoft.driver.MicrosoftKeyboardUSB          6.2.2
    com.microsoft.driver.MicrosoftKeyboard          6.2.2
    com.apple.driver.AppleHWSensor          1.9.5d0
    com.apple.filesystems.autofs          3.0
    com.apple.driver.AppleHDAHardwareConfigDriver          2.2.5a5
    com.apple.driver.AudioAUUC          1.59
    com.apple.driver.AppleHDA          2.2.5a5
    com.apple.driver.AppleTyMCEDriver          1.0.2d2
    com.apple.driver.AppleUpstreamUserClient          3.5.9
    com.apple.driver.AppleMCCSControl          1.0.33
    com.apple.kext.ATIFramebuffer          7.3.2
    com.apple.iokit.IOUserEthernet          1.0.0d1
    com.apple.GeForce          7.3.2
    com.apple.iokit.IOBluetoothSerialManager          4.0.8f17
    com.apple.GeForce7xxx          7.0.4
    com.apple.Dont_Steal_Mac_OS_X          7.0.0
    com.apple.driver.AudioIPCDriver          1.2.3
    com.apple.driver.AppleMCEDriver          1.1.9
    com.apple.ATIRadeonX3000          7.3.2
    com.apple.driver.ACPI_SMC_PlatformPlugin          5.0.0d8
    com.apple.driver.ApplePolicyControl          3.1.33
    com.apple.driver.AppleLPC          1.6.0
    com.apple.driver.CSRUSBBluetoothHCIController          4.0.8f17
    com.apple.driver.CSRHIDTransitionDriver          4.0.8f17
    com.apple.iokit.SCSITaskUserClient          3.2.1
    com.apple.driver.XsanFilter          404
    com.apple.AppleFSCompression.AppleFSCompressionTypeDataless          1.0.0d1
    com.apple.AppleFSCompression.AppleFSCompressionTypeZlib          1.0.0d1
    com.apple.BootCache          33
    com.apple.iokit.IOAHCIBlockStorage          2.1.0
    com.apple.driver.AppleFWOHCI          4.9.0
    com.apple.driver.AirPortBrcm43224          501.36.15
    com.apple.driver.AppleIntelPIIXATA          2.5.1
    com.apple.driver.AppleAHCIPort          2.3.1
    com.apple.driver.AppleUSBHub          5.1.0
    com.apple.driver.AppleIntel8254XEthernet          2.1.3b1
    com.apple.driver.AppleEFINVRAM          1.6.1
    com.apple.driver.AppleUSBEHCI          5.1.0
    com.apple.driver.AppleUSBUHCI          5.1.0
    com.apple.driver.AppleACPIButtons          1.5
    com.apple.driver.AppleRTC          1.5
    com.apple.driver.AppleHPET          1.7
    com.apple.driver.AppleSMBIOS          1.9
    com.apple.driver.AppleACPIEC          1.5
    com.apple.driver.AppleAPIC          1.6
    com.apple.driver.AppleIntelCPUPowerManagementClient          195.0.0
    com.apple.nke.applicationfirewall          3.2.30
    com.apple.security.quarantine          1.4
    com.apple.security.TMSafetyNet          8
    com.apple.driver.AppleIntelCPUPowerManagement          195.0.0
    com.apple.kext.triggers          1.0
    com.apple.driver.DspFuncLib          2.2.5a5
    com.apple.driver.AppleSMBusController          1.0.10d0
    com.apple.iokit.IOSurface          80.0.2
    com.apple.iokit.IOSerialFamily          10.0.5
    com.apple.iokit.IOFireWireIP          2.2.5
    com.apple.iokit.IOAudioFamily          1.8.6fc18
    com.apple.kext.OSvKernDSPLib          1.3
    com.apple.driver.AppleSMC          3.1.3d10
    com.apple.driver.IOPlatformPluginLegacy          5.0.0d8
    com.apple.nvidia.nv50hal          7.3.2
    com.apple.driver.AppleGraphicsControl          3.1.33
    com.apple.driver.AppleHDAController          2.2.5a5
    com.apple.iokit.IOHDAFamily          2.2.5a5
    com.apple.driver.AppleSMBusPCI          1.0.10d0
    com.apple.nvidia.nvGK100hal          7.3.2
    com.apple.driver.IOPlatformPluginFamily          5.1.1d6
    com.apple.kext.ATI5000Controller          7.3.2
    com.apple.kext.ATISupport          7.3.2
    com.apple.nvidia.nvGF100hal          7.3.2
    com.apple.NVDAResman          7.3.2
    com.apple.nvidia.nv40hal.G7xxx          7.0.4
    com.apple.NVDAResman.G7xxx          7.0.4
    com.apple.iokit.IONDRVSupport          2.3.4
    com.apple.iokit.IOGraphicsFamily          2.3.4
    com.apple.driver.AppleUSBBluetoothHCIController          4.0.8f17
    com.apple.iokit.IOBluetoothFamily          4.0.8f17
    com.apple.driver.AppleFileSystemDriver          13
    com.apple.iokit.IOUSBHIDDriver          5.0.0
    com.apple.driver.AppleUSBComposite          5.0.0
    com.apple.iokit.IOSCSIMultimediaCommandsDevice          3.2.1
    com.apple.iokit.IOBDStorageFamily          1.7
    com.apple.iokit.IODVDStorageFamily          1.7.1
    com.apple.iokit.IOCDStorageFamily          1.7.1
    com.apple.iokit.IOATAPIProtocolTransport          3.0.0
    com.apple.iokit.IOSCSIArchitectureModelFamily          3.2.1
    com.apple.iokit.IOFireWireFamily          4.4.8
    com.apple.iokit.IO80211Family          420.3
    com.apple.iokit.IOATAFamily          2.5.1
    com.apple.iokit.IOAHCIFamily          2.0.8
    com.apple.iokit.IONetworkingFamily          2.1
    com.apple.iokit.IOUSBUserClient          5.0.0
    com.apple.iokit.IOUSBFamily          5.1.0
    com.apple.driver.AppleEFIRuntime          1.6.1
    com.apple.iokit.IOHIDFamily          1.7.1
    com.apple.iokit.IOSMBusFamily          1.1
    com.apple.security.sandbox          177.8
    com.apple.kext.AppleMatch          1.0.0d1
    com.apple.driver.DiskImages          331.7
    com.apple.iokit.IOStorageFamily          1.7.2
    com.apple.driver.AppleKeyStore          28.18
    com.apple.driver.AppleACPIPlatform          1.5
    com.apple.iokit.IOPCIFamily          2.7
    com.apple.iokit.IOACPIFamily          1.4

  • My 2014 MacBook Pro stuck on grey screen since trying to update software over an hour ago

    My 2012 MacBook Pro has been stuck on the grey screen for more than hour since I tried updating the software.

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    The first step in dealing with a startup failure is to secure the data. If you want to preserve the contents of the startup drive, and you don't already have at least one current backup, you must try to back up now, before you do anything else. It may or may not be possible. If you don't care about the data that has changed since the last backup, you can skip this step.
    There are several ways to back up a Mac that is unable to start. You need an external hard drive to hold the backup data.
    a. Start up from the Recovery partition, or from a local Time Machine backup volume (option key at startup.) When the OS X Utilities screen appears, launch Disk Utility and follow the instructions in this support article, under “Instructions for backing up to an external hard disk via Disk Utility.” The article refers to starting up from a DVD, but the procedure in Recovery mode is the same. You don't need a DVD if you're running OS X 10.7 or later.
    b. If Step 1a fails because of disk errors, and no other Mac is available, then you may be able to salvage some of your files by copying them in the Finder. If you already have an external drive with OS X installed, start up from it. Otherwise, if you have Internet access, follow the instructions on this page to prepare the external drive and install OS X on it. You'll use the Recovery installer, rather than downloading it from the App Store.
    c. If you have access to a working Mac, and both it and the non-working Mac have FireWire or Thunderbolt ports, start the non-working Mac in target disk mode. Use the working Mac to copy the data to another drive. This technique won't work with USB, Ethernet, Wi-Fi, or Bluetooth.
    d. If the internal drive of the non-working Mac is user-replaceable, remove it and mount it in an external enclosure or drive dock. Use another Mac to copy the data.
    Step 2
    If the startup process stops at a blank gray screen with no Apple logo or spinning "daisy wheel," then the startup volume may be full. If you had previously seen warnings of low disk space, this is almost certainly the case. You might be able to start up in safe mode even though you can't start up normally. Otherwise, start up from an external drive, or else use the technique in Step 1b, 1c, or 1d to mount the internal drive and delete some files. According to Apple documentation, you need at least 9 GB of available space on the startup volume (as shown in the Finder Info window) for normal operation.
    Step 3
    Sometimes a startup failure can be resolved by resetting the NVRAM.
    Step 4
    If you use a wireless keyboard, trackpad, or mouse, replace or recharge the batteries. The battery level shown in the Bluetooth menu item may not be accurate.
    Step 5
    If there's a built-in optical drive, a disc may be stuck in it. Follow these instructions to eject it.
    Step 6
    Press and hold the power button until the power shuts off. Disconnect all wired peripherals except those needed to start up, and remove all aftermarket expansion cards. Use a different keyboard and/or mouse, if those devices are wired. If you can start up now, one of the devices you disconnected, or a combination of them, is causing the problem. Finding out which one is a process of elimination.
    Step 7
    If you've started from an external storage device, make sure that the internal startup volume is selected in the Startup Disk pane of System Preferences.
    Start up in safe mode. Note: If FileVault is enabled, or if a firmware password is set, or if the startup volume is a software RAID, you can’t do this. Post for further instructions.
    Safe mode is much slower to start and run than normal, and some things won’t work at all, including wireless networking on certain Macs.
    The login screen appears even if you usually log in automatically. You must know the login password in order to log in. If you’ve forgotten the password, you will need to reset it before you begin.
    When you start up in safe mode, it's normal to see a dark gray progress bar on a light gray background. If the progress bar gets stuck for more than a few minutes, or if the system shuts down automatically while the progress bar is displayed, the startup volume is corrupt and the drive is probably malfunctioning. In that case, go to Step 11. If you ever have another problem with the drive, replace it immediately.
    If you can start and log in in safe mode, empty the Trash, and then open the Finder Info window on the startup volume ("Macintosh HD," unless you gave it a different name.) Check that you have at least 9 GB of available space, as shown in the window. If you don't, copy as many files as necessary to another volume (not another folder on the same volume) and delete the originals. Deletion isn't complete until you empty the Trash again. Do this until the available space is more than 9 GB. Then restart as usual (i.e., not in safe mode.)
    If the startup process hangs again, the problem is likely caused by a third-party system modification that you installed. Post for further instructions.
    Step 8
    Launch Disk Utility in Recovery mode (see Step 1.) Select the startup volume, then run Repair Disk. If any problems are found, repeat until clear. If Disk Utility reports that the volume can't be repaired, the drive has malfunctioned and should be replaced. You might choose to tolerate one such malfunction in the life of the drive. In that case, erase the volume and restore from a backup. If the same thing ever happens again, replace the drive immediately.
    This is one of the rare situations in which you should also run Repair Permissions, ignoring the false warnings it may produce. Look for the line "Permissions repair complete" at the end of the output. Then restart as usual.
    Step 9
    If the startup device is an aftermarket SSD, it may need a firmware update and/or a forced "garbage collection." Instructions for doing this with a Crucial-branded SSD were posted here. Some of those instructions may apply to other brands of SSD, but you should check with the vendor's tech support.  
    Step 10
    Reinstall the OS. If the Mac was upgraded from an older version of OS X, you’ll need the Apple ID and password you used to upgrade.
    Step 11
    Do as in Step 9, but this time erase the startup volume in Disk Utility before installing. The system should automatically restart into the Setup Assistant. Follow the prompts to transfer the data from a Time Machine or other backup.
    Step 12
    This step applies only to models that have a logic-board ("PRAM") battery: all Mac Pro's and some others (not current models.) Both desktop and portable Macs used to have such a battery. The logic-board battery, if there is one, is separate from the main battery of a portable. A dead logic-board battery can cause a startup failure. Typically the failure will be preceded by loss of the settings for the startup disk and system clock. See the user manual for replacement instructions. You may have to take the machine to a service provider to have the battery replaced.
    Step 13
    If you get this far, you're probably dealing with a hardware fault. Make a "Genius" appointment at an Apple Store, or go to another authorized service provider.

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