Macbook - 1GB not enough?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by mark88, Sep 3, 2006.

  1. mark88 macrumors 6502a

    Oct 30, 2004
    Got a 2Ghz Macbook a couple weeks ago with 1GB ramm, have to say I'm not that impressed with performance. I get the spinning circle ALOT, just with a few apps open and often find my free memory is down really really low. Safari seems to use alot. Memory management doesn't seem that smart tho.

    Is anyone else managing OK with 1GB? Is there anything I can do to improve performance?
  2. Cybix macrumors 6502a


    Feb 10, 2006
    Western Australia
    I have 2 gig in my MBP, and find the system rarely ever uses it... it's overkill for what I do really... but, I guess it's better to have more that you wont use, than not enough when you need it.. err yeah.

    here's a hint, dont use your dashboard unless you really need to. I find i almost never use mine these days.. it CHEWS memory.. widgets eat it up
  3. clevin macrumors G3


    Aug 6, 2006
  4. aristobrat macrumors G4

    Oct 14, 2005
    On Activity Monitor under the System Memory tab, what are your Page ins/outs after being up for a few hours?

    If you consistently have a lot of page outs, then memory would be one thing to look at.
  5. zwida macrumors 6502a


    Jan 5, 2001
    Out of curiosity, what does "page outs" signify?
  6. Xander562 macrumors 68000


    Apr 2, 2006
    i have 1GB in my macbook pro, i honestly was expecting to have to upgrade to 2GB but i find it perfect the way it is... i RARELY get the spinning beach ball of death, but if your really THAT impatient i guess you could upgrade.
  7. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus


    Jan 9, 2004
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    It means that a page of real memory was cached into the virtual memory disk file to make room for other data. It's one of the best indicators of whether or not you have enough RAM for what you're doing. It's much more useful than looking at the free RAM number, which is fairly useless in an OS like OS X.

    This is important since, if you say, "is 1GB enough for me?" that's a very difficult question to ask. Some usage profiles will lead to no beachballing with 1GB and then there are people who do things with their macs for which 6GB isn't enough.

    Forum search or MRoogle for page-outs... it's very informative, and you'll get a better understanding of how OS X uses RAM. :)
  8. mark88 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Oct 30, 2004
    Right now it says 122302/128788...

    means nothing to me? Just using 2 browsers, Opera and Safari and having Mail, adium open often causing the spinning ball of death. Clicking to close a tab in Safari will do it.
  9. Steve Jobless macrumors 6502

    May 31, 2006
    fwiw i find that the stock 512 is good enough for my basic needs, the only time i get the beach ball is when i use mozilla/my gmail ftp server but its slow with a 1gb windows machine....
  10. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus


    Jan 9, 2004
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    That second number is the one you care about; it is rather high. The value of the page-ins is largely unimportant. But a few questions.

    (1) how long has the computer been up?
    (2) how many tabs / windows total between Safari and Opera? I think we underestimate how much resource consumption each tab has.... is there a lot of Flash content? Are you using a Universal Binary version of Flash? Also is your Opera 9.0 or greater?
    (3) how much mail in GB do you have in Mail?
  11. AvSRoCkCO1067 macrumors 65816


    Sep 6, 2005
    I've got 1.5 GB; to be honest, when I have iWeb and iPhoto up simultaneously, I wish I would've gone for the full 2 GB - I have a LOT of pictures and my iWeb site is pretty large, so it would've been nice for those programs.

    Otherwise, I never use more than 512 MB of Ram.
  12. reubs macrumors 68000

    Jun 22, 2006
    I got my 1.83 w/ the stock RAM b/c I knew it would be relatively inexpensive to upgrade. I upgraded to 2 gigs for about $150, and I'm really happy with it. If you have a few extra bucks and you plan on running your system for a few years, go ahead and max it out. Programs will become bigger memory hogs (I guess), and it never hurts to have too much instead of too little.

    Just my thoughts.
  13. Jeonat macrumors regular

    Jul 25, 2006
    United Kingdom
    1.25Gb here and the machine is pretty fast at most tasks, the only time it slows down a bit is when I'm running Rosetta-fied applications like Word.
  14. MisterEd macrumors 6502

    Jan 2, 2006
    Yes, open Activity Monitor and scroll down all the processes. If there are any PPC processes running, this will slow down your system quite a bit and take up much more memory than any Intel processes.
  15. sycobreaker macrumors newbie

    Sep 4, 2006
    Melbourne, Australia
    i got a macbook with 1g ram and it seems like it flies to me. i rarely get beachball actions going on even when i run imovie and garageband and itunes and safari at once. very impressed. i had the intention of upgrading to 2g but i dont think i will need it in the near future.
  16. Chaszmyr macrumors 601


    Aug 9, 2002
    1gb is just right for a MacBook, in my opinion.
  17. Mitthrawnuruodo Moderator emeritus


    Mar 10, 2004
    Bergen, Norway
    I have 91281/0 after 26-ish hours of uptime on my MacBook with 2GB RAM... :cool:

    I think Apple's advice is actually quite sound:
  18. dreamsINdigital macrumors 6502

    Sep 4, 2006
    So I have a 2.0 GHz MacBook with the stock 512 MB and my page ins/outs says 526537/196391 with about 13 hours uptime. So I should probably get more RAM huh? I do notice quite a bit of slowdowns.
  19. mark88 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Oct 30, 2004
    Check out the attachment. Here I had Opera open with 2 tabs, Safari 2 windows with 1 tab in each. 1 Finder Window, VNC Client, Adium, Mail and Slush(converts video frames to images).

    Attached Files:

  20. miniConvert macrumors 68040


    Mar 4, 2006
    Kent, UK - the 'Garden of England'.
    Only if it's a problem for you, yes more RAM would be a solution to the slowdown.

    Slush is using loads of your RAM.
  21. mark88 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Oct 30, 2004
    right, but even without that open things get bad. Safari seems to use alot too..?
  22. brandon6684 Guest

    Dec 30, 2002
    I've got 1GB in my MacBook. Now do you have 1GB stick or RAM or 2 512 sticks. I may be wrong, but I believe that with DDR2 and the shared memory as VRAM on top of that, 1 stick will be considerably slower than matching sticks of memory.
  23. Dagless macrumors Core


    Jan 18, 2005
    Fighting to stay in the EU
    tch! you're all too picky. 12" PowerBook with 512mb ram and I'm running Final Cut Express, Garageband and all that. it does get slow but it's still manageable. still faster than the PC's I use :p
  24. Abstract macrumors Penryn


    Dec 27, 2002
    Location Location Location
    Not if you use Adobe Lightroom or Photoshop (not Universal yet).

    I have 452,000 pageouts within 12 days, 6 hours, and 40 minutes of computer uptime. :eek:
  25. kevinliu4 macrumors regular

    Aug 8, 2006
    i'm also fine with 1gb ram in my 2.16ghz mbp. but i also have a 7200rpm hdd which imo makes a big difference.

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