Kernel Panic on macOS (crash, reboot)

There was an ongoing thread here regarding macOS kernel panics. I wanted to open a dedicated bug report thread, but if any mods could merge them to preserve the details, that would be great!

Steps to reproduce

I have run into 3 kernel panics so far, all happening after the release of 0.10.9 or 2021-01-19.

The first two kernel panics occurred during normal usage. One occurred when editing a single text file (typing). The other occurred in a split-screen with a simple text file in one pane and a large PDF (using the new PDF viewer from 0.10.8) in the other.

The 3rd kernel panic occurred while Obsidian was sitting in the background (Safari was the primary application). The note that was open was a basic file with a YAML header and internal links only.

Expected result

Kernel panics are not expected during normal usage.

Actual result

Kernel panic occurs, resulting in a hard restart of device.


Operating System: macOS 11.1 (Intel)

Obsidian Version: 0.10.9 – 0.10.10 (Installer 0.10.7)

Additional information

Plugins and Themes

I do utilize a number of 3rd party plugins and the Minimal theme (in case other folks may see potential overlap):

  1. Advanced Tables
  2. Calendar
  3. Citations
  4. Editor Syntax Highlight
  5. Hider
  6. macOS Keyboard Navigation
  7. Mind Map
  8. Minimal Theme Settings
  9. Obsidian_to_Anki
  10. Paste URL into Selection
  11. Sliding Panes

For the core plugins, I am utilizing everything (including Sync and Publish) except Markdown importer, Zettelkasten prefixer, slides, and the audio recorder.

I’ll begin the process of narrowing down to only the core features.


The vault has been using Obsidian Sync + iCloud Drive + Git-LFS (GitHub), but haven’t had any problems with the setup previously.

Other Vault Information

Size: ≈2,000 items and ~1.7 GB
Types of Files: Primarily text, medium/large size images/animations (largest 29 MB), and PDFs (largest 195 MB)

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Thanks for the report, bug:

  1. We don’t take bug reports when third party plugins and themes are used
  2. We need reproduceble steps
  3. Obsidian runs deep in userland, under many layers of software. If you got a Kernel Panic, it is 99.99% percent a problem of Apple or Electron or both and there is nothing we can do about it, just wait until they figure out the problem.
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I am not sure if you have an old installer version. You can grab a fresh copy of obsidian from the website. This will update electron too…

I’ve updated the above report to include the current installer version (0.10.7), but will also pull the latest installer to see if it’s a problem from an old Electron version. I’ve now moved to testing without any plugins and themes and will keep the post updated.

0.10.7 is recent

Hello there. Coming here to report that I had Kernel Panics caused due to Obsidian 3 times between yesterday and today. No 3rd party plugins or even sync being used here.

The problem seems to be with the renderer. From the KP log (I can provide more if needed):

Process name corresponding to current thread: Obsidian Helper (Renderer)

System model name: iMac18,3 Mac OS version: 20C69 Kernel version: Darwin Kernel Version 20.2.0: Wed Dec 2 20:39:59 PST 2020; root:xnu-7195.60.75~1/RELEASE_X86_64
Obsidian v0.10.11

Loving it so far, I’m about to get the Catalyst version. Cheers and hopes that this will be solved soon. KPs are no joke!

@gabegomes Send the bug report to Apple. It’s their problem.


I did, of course. But I am not sure it is only their problem, as the previous version of Obsidian did not cause these KPs…

Probably you had an older version of Electron with obsidian. This is between electron and obsidian. But if it reaches kernel panic status, I blame Apple more than Electron.

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Some people think this might be a GPU driver issue. try running obsidian with --disable-gpu.

Again this is on apple’s court. There is really nothing we can do about it.


Thanks for the thorough replies! I’ll try your suggestions and report back if I still have KPs, just for keeping tabs.

@WhiteNoise on that github issue (which sadly is closed so I guess nobody’s looking at it…) alb3rtuk mentions he thinks it’s related to the paulmillr/chokidar file watching library. Does Obsidian use this module? might help narrow it down…

It’s closed because the electron dev think it’s apple’s problem. we don’t use chokidar and even if we did, it should not cause kernel panics. Please submit your crash reports to apple.

It’s been awhile since I’ve had a panic, and am now on 11.2. Hopefully this was an 11.0/11.1 bug that’s been fixed. Anyone else gotten KPs in the last few days?

I still got Kernel panic today.


  • Operating system: macOS 11.2.1
  • Obsidian version: 0.11.0

I also encounter a crash at least once a day when I use Obsidian, even sometimes while the mac is idle.
It never happens when Obsidian is closed even if using other electron apps like VSCode.

MacOS Catalina 10.15.3
Obsidian 11.0

Please report the hardware setup you’re using in reports of kernel panics.

I have never experienced a kernel panic from Obsidian on either my 2015 MacBook Pro or my 2020 Mac Mini (non-M1). I’m almost always on an external display but I’ve used the MacBook Pro’s display, too.

(This is on 10.14 and 10.15. I’ve yet to upgrade to Big Sur.)

Yes, here it is:

Nom du modèle : Mac mini (fin 2012)
Identifiant du modèle : Macmini6,2
Nom du processeur : Quad-Core Intel Core i7
Vitesse du processeur : 2,6 GHz
Nombre de processeurs : 1
Nombre total de cœurs : 4
Cache de niveau 2 (par cœur) : 256 Ko
Cache de niveau 3 : 6 Mo
Technologie Hyper-Threading : Activé
Mémoire : 16 Go
Version de la ROM de démarrage :
Version SMC (système) : 2.8f1
Jeu de composants : Intel HD Graphics 4000
Type : Processeur graphique
Bus : Intégré
VRAM (dynamique, max.) : 1536 Mo
Fournisseur : Intel

Moniteurs :
DELL U2713HM :
Résolution : 2560 x 1440 (QHD/WQHD - Wide Quad High Definition)
Profondeur de mémoire d’image : Couleurs 24 bits (ARGB8888)

In past 3 weeks, my macOS crashed while using Obsidian. I have the CPU crash log and it was due to Obsidian Helper ( Renderer ) Thread.
I have never seen user space app to send a kernel panic. it’s rare. Please try to fix it guys.
Even after restart my Keyboard and mouse are not working properly.
Does anyone have the same issue ?

Here are the specs :
16 inch MacOS
RAM : 32 GB
below is my neofetch output :
Screen Shot 2021-02-23 at 8.46.28 AM

  • also at the time of crash i was running htop command in terminal and RAM usage was around 7 GB / 32 GB.
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