Panther Memory Leak??

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by Grimace, Mar 3, 2004.

  1. Grimace macrumors 68040


    Feb 17, 2003
    with Hamburglar.
    I've been having some serious issues with lag time recently. Programs take FOREVER to load, they just sit and bounce in the dock - laughing at me.

    When launching Safari, Word, iTunes - anything, no matter how small or large, the icon bounces - and the computer accesses the hard drive - doing about 2 HD clicks per second.* That goes on for about 30-40 seconds, and then the app opens and runs smoothly. ...Until I move to a different app and then it goes to the HD again.* It's like the computer has ironically forgotten about its memory.* (512 installed)

    What's going on here??
  2. robbieduncan Moderator emeritus


    Jul 24, 2002
    I know that this sounds like a Window solution but have you tried rebooting? If you reboot and it all returns to normal then you can be fairly certain that you encountered a memory leak in some app (unlikely to be in the OS. Note that a memory leak does not mean that the system has lost some of your RAM, but that a program has grabbed some and not given it back).

    If you do not want to reboot or simply want to know what is causing this then use Activity Monitor (in the Utilities folder in Applications) and sort the process list by memory size. This should show the culprit pretty quickly.
  3. Grimace thread starter macrumors 68040


    Feb 17, 2003
    with Hamburglar.
    sorry, I should have posted that I've done that a few times now. Even a full shut down.
  4. Mac til death macrumors regular

    Oct 13, 2002
    Does it take you a while to open or save files?

    It could be a problem reading from your hard drive. If the program runs fine after you have launched it, and if your hard drive is going bad, that would be a nightmare when it tries to run these programs, open more, save/open files, and use virtual memory.... (j/w how much RAM do you have?)

    You may want to pick up or borrow a copy of Disk Warrior and see if everything is ok with your drive... (after you've done the usual problem solvers: fscking, repairing permissions, zapping of pram, trashing prefs, blah blah blah)
  5. hugemullens macrumors 6502a


    Dec 15, 2002
    Open up terminal and type "top". See if you can find if a certian program is hogging ram. I once had safari develop a memory leak and it would just grow and grow in ram until the computer was unusable. It would actually grow to 2 gigs before the terminal would stop responding. The only solution was to reinstall. I reset safari, reinstall, went back to an older version, everything, but it just wasn;t to be.
  6. Grimace thread starter macrumors 68040


    Feb 17, 2003
    with Hamburglar.
    It's a 1Ghz PB with 512MB RAM. Thanks for those tips, I'll see what happens with those ideas.
  7. Grimace thread starter macrumors 68040


    Feb 17, 2003
    with Hamburglar.
    Really, it's just opening applications - and then switching between them. Sometimes it's fine with 8 apps open. Other times, I open just one app, and I get pinwheels for a minute or two - and then it's super fast like normal.
  8. Colonel Panik macrumors regular

    Feb 23, 2004
    Dublin, Ireland
    Utilities > Activity Monitor.

    Open this, then position it where you can see it, and try opening some apps. It'll show you whether it's disk activity, processor overload, memory...

    Perhaps you have some huge automatically generated log files. Do you have MacJanitor? It'll clean out logs that Unix normally clears out on a daily/weekly/monthly basis, but if you don't leave your machine running 24/7, these tasks don't get done.

    The other thing I can think of is to repair permissions (on the Panther install disks, I think).
  9. Grimace thread starter macrumors 68040


    Feb 17, 2003
    with Hamburglar.
    okay, I think the problem is solved. I narrowed it down to "when Safari is open" - then everything sucks. I ran Disk Utility and fsck -yf and all seems to be well now. Thanks everyone!!
  10. BillClinton macrumors member

    Sep 21, 2003
    United States
    Safari sucks at memory management. It eats up a huge amount of memory!
  11. rdowns macrumors Penryn


    Jul 11, 2003
    No sh*t. I ran "top" after learning of the command above and Safari was at 101MB. I only have one window open with 9 tabs (all MR). Talk about a memory hog.
  12. benixau macrumors 65816


    Oct 9, 2002
    Sydney, Australia
    I beat you - i get 120MB with - wait for it - 0 windows open.
    Wow apple - this is your lightweight browser - what about heavy weight OSX or FCP? :D
  13. Le Big Mac macrumors 68020

    Le Big Mac

    Jan 7, 2003
    Washington, DC

    I was at 372 with three tabs. Unbelievable. IT doesn't generally affect performance, but iMovie sure was dragging last night. Quit safari.

    What's up with that--is it programmed to take everything available or something?
  14. jesuisme macrumors member

    Dec 12, 2003
    Orlando, Florida, USA
    Maybe this IS the Mac virus :D. I still refuse to use Explorer, though...
  15. Powerbook G5 macrumors 68040

    Powerbook G5

    Jun 23, 2003
    St Augustine, FL
    I've never had memory issues with Safari, perhaps it's a more specific issue?
  16. Dub macrumors newbie

    Feb 5, 2004
    Cardiff, UK
    I have issues with Safari and memory usgae. I have a 1GHz emac with 640MB Ram. I shut down completely and restart once a week. I always have the same apps open all the time ie


    but my free memory varies between about 150MB and 0MB. Safari's memory usage varies between about 10MB and the most I have seen 150MB. The number of tabs seems to make no difference. I have seen Safari use only 50MB with 10 tabs open and yet use 150MB with none open at all or just the one google page or something. Closing all the tabs and hiding safari does not affect this figure. Even when it is doing nothing it seems to require 150MB or RAM. I find it gets worse the longer the machine is on and a restart gets it back to a more reasonable level.

    There are two processes that concern me:
    Windowserver and (null). They use 50MB each. What is (null) and why does it need 50MB? Is it meant to be there or is it some piece of spyware pretending to be part of the OS? Any ideas?

  17. iindigo macrumors 6502a


    Jul 22, 2002
    San Francisco, CA
    I've has memory trouble with Safari as well. It doesn't take effect immediatly, only after the app is left open for a while (4 to 6 hours) with tsome windows and/or tabs open. This is a really bad thing when you only have 128MB of RAM.

    In fact, it was such a problem I had to switch over to Camino and OmniWeb. :(
  18. titaniumducky macrumors 6502a


    Nov 22, 2003
    Virtual Memory

    My Virtual Memory is size is a little over 5 gigs! Is this OK/Normal? I have 512 MB of RAM and don't have any performance issues. I usually have a bout 5 MB free RAM, 50 MB Wired, 300 MB Active, and 150 MB Inactive.

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