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Escape from a hung logout System
I've been having a problem frequently in Leopard that I only occasionally had in Tiger, which is a login hanging when trying to logout after the Finder and Dock have closed. This leaves you with no apparent way to switch to other logged in users to at least log them out cleanly before restarting. Sometimes, the logout hangs before the Dock has gone, and it is a simple matter of clicking on the Finder icon to get your desktop back.

I found that a way of escaping from this trap is to simply employ the known hint of pressing the Option key plus a hardware key to go directly to the related System Preferences panel. This will summon up System Preferences and give you your menu bar back, from where you can then switch to another user account. Closing System Preferences will make the menu bar go away, but you can also bring it back again.
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Escape from a hung logout
Authored by: rosshettel on Jan 02, '08 08:02:14AM

This solves my problem like a bicycle is a solution to a broken car. It works, but man, I really wish there was a hint on how to stop the hanging logouts.

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Escape from a hung logout
Authored by: Anonymous on Jan 02, '08 08:17:04AM
I had the same problem and solved it by deleting the file in /Library.
You should look at this discussion on the Apple Forums :

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Escape from a hung logout
Authored by: u2mr2os2 on Jan 08, '08 09:04:06AM

I have to add that this doesn't always work. Sometimes it seems that the logout gets a bit farther to where whatever responds to these key shortcuts is no longer there.

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Escape from a hung logout
Authored by: lokithefirst on Nov 22, '08 09:44:25PM

I can recover from a hung-up logout, but I still can't logout or restart when this happens. I've recently reformatted my harddrive and reinstalled Leopard. I have one admin account and a secondary user account and when the secondary account is logged in I can't log it out!

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