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Xserve users report performance issues after Apple's Mac OS X 10.6.8 update

Though Mac OS X 10.6.8 brought a number of fixes and enhancements to Snow Leopard, owners of Apple's now-discontinued Xserve hardware have reported performance issues from the software update.

A growing thread on the Apple Support Communities website reveals that after installing the update, a Mac OS X Server-only process dubbed "hwmond" consumes a huge share of processing power for some users. For those who experience the issue, the process can take up nearly 100 percent of the Xserve's CPU.

"The problem is that the hardware monitoring daemon 'hwmond' takes up around 95% CPU after the update," one user wrote in an e-mail to AppleInsider. "I have personally installed the update on two xserves and both now suffer from the issue."

Users on the Apple Support Communities report experiencing the issue after installing the "combo" update supplied by Apple last week. However, at least one person reported issues with the "hwmond" process after installing Apple's "delta" update for Mac OS X 10.6.8 as well.

The issue reportedly applies to a range of Xserve hardware, while one user, "jjasper," said the problem does not appear on a Mac mini Server.

"So it must be a bug in how hardware monitoring is communicating with the sensors in xserve that is giving it fits," they wrote on Apple's forums, "or is this Apple's way of making us try and get rid of our xserves, haha."

Apple announced late last year that it would discontinue its Xserve line of rack-mount servers. As promised, the hardware is no longer available to purchase, and prospective buyers are encouraged to run a Mac Pro or Mac mini instead.

Though the Xserve has been discontinued, Apple has promised that Intel-based rackmounted servers are still supported. Purchases made up to the Jan. 31, 2011, deadline carry Apple's full one-year warranty.