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2018 iMac with High Sierra sometimes boots with no cursor -- a fix

Posted 01-06-2019 at 06:09 PM by flshope
Updated 01-13-2019 at 06:43 PM by flshope

I purchased an iMac all-in-one machine in June 2018. An immediate problem I encountered was that the machine sometimes booted with no cursor. The mouse and keyboard are both wireless. The keyboard always worked, but the mouse was rendered useless whenever the machine booted with no cursor, which was intermittent. Turning the mouse off and on (after fully booting) generated a screen acknowledgment that the mouse status had changed but did not bring up the cursor. The voice assistant Siri was no help at finding a solution, but maybe I didn't ask the right questions. A general internet search turned up numerous reports of disappearing cursors. Some of these indicated a suspected bug in macOS. One suggested fix was changing the pointer size. I did this, but it did not solve my problem.

I later discovered that my wife and daughter never had the missing cursor problem when they booted the machine. With some discussion, we discovered that they always turned on the mouse and keyboard after hitting the power button but during the boot progress bar (macOS does not give a splash by default). I, on the other hand, had been routinely turning on the mouse and keyboard before hitting the power button.

Since following my superiors' procedure of turning on the mouse and keyboard during the boot progress bar, I have not had the problem of no mouse cursor.

Machine Overview:
Model Name: iMac
Processor Name: Intel Core i5, 1 processor, 4 cores
Processor Speed: 3 GHz
Memory: 8 GB
Hard Disk: 1 TB
Display Type: Built-In Retina LCD (4096 x 2304)
Operating System: macOS 10.13.6 High Sierra
Purchase Date: June 2018
Keyboard/Mouse: Wireless
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