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Mac GUI fails 30 percent of the time, debugging, and swing Vs AWT

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Problem: When the user starts the java applet, a lot of the times it shows that it has loaded, like the toolbar changes to correspond to the applet and an icon for the applet appears in the application bar at the bottom but the frame never displays. So the user has to close or force quit the program then try loading it again and eventually the frame will load.
I moved 3000 miles away from my home town and the school I'm at doesn't have any Mac computers. I don't know why. The point is I can't test or develop on a Mac, I can only develop on win98 and then have the person 3000 miles away test on his Mac. So I need a way to debug the program or have his computer create debugging info I can use to figure out what it is doing. This problem also isn't specific to his Mac, every person I know that's tried to run the applet on a Mac has the same problem with the frame only loading some of the time. The problem never occurs on linux or windows machines only on Mac.
It's all written using AWT using no swing.
1) Has anyone ever experienced this problem with Macintosh before?
2) Is there a way for me put something in the code so that it creates a file with all the information and problems that may be occuring upon boot, so the user can send the file to me?
Like when I was having problems with the listeners I just overroad the dispatchevent method and piped it all to a file so I could see what was happening, then had the user run the program and e-mail me the files with all the events in them. Is there something similiar I can do like watch the classes load or anything else that someone else might suggest???
3) The problem is also that I really don't have an idea of what to even be looking for. Even if I had a Mac system at my disposal to develop on, I'm not really sure what in the code I would test to figure out was wrong. So any debugging ideas would be much appreciated.
4) Are problems like these usual with awt, as far as platform dependent defects and this is why most people now use swing? Cause I read some stuff about how swing is a lot more platform independent then awt. Also this is a pretty large GUI application so if I switched it over to Swing would the overhead be very considerable and would the program run a lot slower??
Switching the program over to Swing is a last resort and I'm hoping that I can debug the program and get it working in AWT. Is that a pipedream?
Thank you for the help
[ October 04, 2003: Message edited by: Eric Hoskland ]
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