2 Similar Macbooks - 1 runs much much worse than the other

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by esoter1c, Mar 12, 2013.

  1. esoter1c macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2012
    #1
    The two Macbooks I have are
    Apple MacBook "Core 2 Duo" 2.0 13" (Unibody) MacBook 5,1 - http://www.everymac.com/systems/app...-2.0-aluminum-13-late-2008-unibody-specs.html
    Apple MacBook Pro "Core 2 Duo" 2.4 17" MacBookPro 3,1 - http://www.everymac.com/systems/app...k-pro-core-2-duo-2.4-17-santa-rosa-specs.html

    I have upgraded the ram on the MacBook to 4GB, the Pro also has 4GB, other than that the rest is as is. Both are running the latest version of OS X.

    The MacBook has 25Gb out of 160Gb free.
    The Pro has 40Gb out of 160Gb free.

    The problem is the MacBook runs extremely slow compared to the Pro. With the Pro I can run anything no problem...no lag, I can have as many programs as I want open at once (Xcode, Photoshop, Firefox, Mail etc..)

    However with the MacBook If I open more than any 2 programs everything becomes very sluggish. So if I have Xcode open and need to open Firefox I'll be waiting a good 30+ secs for firefox to open and even while using it it'll be slow. Opening anything else will just make my machine run extremely laggy or just start freezing.

    I understand that the Pro should be better but comparing the stats of the two there aren't that many differences.
    The Pro has a better L2/L3 Cache (1MB more) and the Processor Speed is of course slightly better. It also doesn't have integrated video card memory.

    On the other hand the MacBook has newer Ram.

    I'm just curious if anyone has any ideas why the MacBook is running so terribly compared to the Pro.

    Thanks!
     
  2. xShane macrumors 6502a

    xShane

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2012
    Location:
    United States
    #2
    Just as you said, better cache, processor, and graphics (which combined will probably make a significant difference as you've noticed).

    Analyze Activity Monitor to see how much RAM and CPU is being used on your MacBook (not the Pro) when running the apps you want to run.
     
  3. esoter1c thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2012
    #3
    I was running all the apps (around 8) on both laptops and comparing them.
    Both of them usually had a CPU idle % of 50-80.
    For the RAM the MacBook had around 10MB free while the Pro had 300-500MB.
    However even when I close some of the apps on the MacBook and get the RAM to about 400MB-800MB free it will still run slowly.

    I was thinking of possibly upgrading my MacBook to 8Gb of RAM but wasn't sure if that would even fix the problem and would rather not spend 80$ if not needed.

    I also used Onyx to check my hard drive and it says everything is working fine.
     
  4. Graeme43 macrumors 6502a

    Graeme43

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2006
    Location:
    Great Britain (Glasgow)
    #4
    Probably paging stuff to HD and making it run real slow? You should check activity monitor and look at the page outs when you think its running slow. More ram should help that :D
     
  5. esoter1c thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2012
    #5
    I've been working with the MacBook all day (currently only running 3 apps) and it's running real slow.

    Comparing the CPU to this morning is about the same.
    The RAM is similar as well, I have 500MB free.

    The Page Ins: 1.13 GB
    The Page Outs: 1.03 GB ..both doing (0bytes/sec)
    Swap used: 3.00 GB

    Even typing in here is slow...I type a good 3-4 words before they start showing up :/ , guess i'll try upgrading to 8Gb RAM.
     
  6. seveej macrumors 6502a

    seveej

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2009
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    #6
    Honestly, while the MBP is the "better" machine, the difference should be barely noticeable. I've used a MBAlu as primary machine for 18 months, and it is no slouch...

    My first suspicion would fall into the category of "messed up OS". Is there any difference in the "upgrade paths" you have taken?

    RGDS,
     
  7. esoter1c thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2012
    #7
    Yeah I didn't think the differences were big enough to make such a huge impact (hence this post), especially since the RAM on the MacBook is actually faster than the Pro.

    I got both machines in June 2011, formatted them both and did a fresh install of Snow Leopard.

    The MacBook hasn't been formatted since and is now using Mountain Lion (through updates).

    The Pro I had formatted again sometime in March 2012 and installed Lion OSX fresh. It's now also using Mountain Lion (through update).
     
  8. seveej macrumors 6502a

    seveej

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2009
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    #8
    That difference in upgrade paths should not account for that large a difference. Have you checked the MB's permissions are in order?

    RGDS,
     
  9. esoter1c thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2012
    #9
    Sorry I'm not too sure exactly what you mean by permissions. Where and how do I check them?

    Thanks

    EDIT:
    In Disk Utility I found the 'Verify Disk Permissions' and 'Repair Disk Permissions'...will run the Verify right now
     
  10. seveej macrumors 6502a

    seveej

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2009
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    #10
    That's okay.
    Permissions relate to files, and for some reason, they can become "entangled" (for the lack of a better word). If you want to read up on it: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Filesystem_permissions

    In any case, this is something I recommend Mac owners to do regularly (like: once a year) and should always be in the top five actions if operating system or apps start behaving strange.
    Open Disk Utility (/Applications/Utilities/Disk Utility, or just enter "Disk Utility" into spotlight.
    From the left hand side, select the disk containing the operating system (if your disk has more than one partition, then from the centre-bottom click "Repair Disk permissions". Let it run its course (it might take some time).

    RGDS,
     
  11. esoter1c thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2012
    #11
    Yeah I figured it was in Disk Utility :)

    Just ran the Verify and it came up with just under 700 Permissions differ :eek: ..most of them (95%) are from “Library/Image Capture/Devices/EPSON Scanner.app" and "Library/Printers".

    Will run the Repair now and let you know how it turns out!
     
  12. esoter1c thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2012
    #12
    So the Repair Permissions finished and I 'Verified' again and no errors were found.
    I guess I'll just have to keep using it and see what happens.
     
  13. esoter1c thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2012
    #13
    After doing this i've noticed that my MacBook runs much better (still not as good as the Pro) but way better than it use too. Thanks :)

    Now just gotta wait for my 8gb of RAM and i'm sure it'll be even better!
     
  14. esoter1c thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2012
    #14
    In case anyone is interested I recently installed the 8Gb of RAM. Machine runs much better now, I'm able to open up a lot of apps now and it doesn't really slow down like before :).

    Even after using for several hours the Page outs and swap used in Activity Monitor are always at 0 now instead of 1+Gb like before.
     

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