2010 Macbook Pro gets Spinning Wheel A LOT, help please

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by troy14, Nov 1, 2011.

  1. troy14 macrumors 6502a

    Mar 25, 2008
    Las Vegas (Summerlin), NV
    Hey guys, my 2010 Macbook pro (specs are 2.4ghz intel core 2 duo, 4gb ram, NVIDIA GeForce 320M 256 MB, and 250gb HD, basically its stock)

    This has been happening for maybe a few months, and I just now bothered to try and see what's causing this. It gets the loading skinny rainbow wheel a LOT, even when doing basic tasks.

    I can't give a million examples, but it happens randomly... say for instance I have iTunes open and will open Safari and browse to a website (nothing crazy), it will pause/hang for a few seconds then resume. This is VERY annoying.

    I have tried repairing permissions , etc.. and it still does it. I ran a basic hardware test from my CDs and it came back clear...

    Is it possible my ram or HD is going bad?? It never used to act this way - it was fine for the year I bought it, and I even just upgraded to Lion to see if it'd help, it doesn't.

    Anyone have any suggestions? I'd appreciate it!
  2. yawns macrumors member

    Oct 12, 2011
    Are you running SL or Lion? Have you upgraded anything recently? Even if your computer used to run fine, newer versions of things are usually more resource-hungry.

    I'd guess the loading is occurring while memory is being swapped out from the harddrive. Have you checked your RAM usage in Activity Monitor? If you see a high volume at "page outs," that means you're pulling stuff from the harddrive a lot, which is Bad.

    If you have an issue with this, you can try to investigate by choosing, "All Processes," in the menu at the top of Activity Monitor, then sorting by the various "mem," columns. If you don't see those, you can enable them via the view->columns menu.

    I'm pretty sure you can upgrade to 8gb of ram fairly inexpensively. Something like this


    But please wait for others to confirm before buying!
  3. rick snagwell macrumors 68040

    rick snagwell

    Feb 12, 2011
    oceanside, ca
    I'm having the same issue...cant really pinpoint if it started when i upgraded to Lion.

    I'm on a late 2009 model unibody macbook.

    i attached a picture of my act mon.

    Attached Files:

  4. shardey macrumors 6502a


    Jan 28, 2010
    My biggest concern for all these i5/i7 laptops, are them coming with hard drives. These have been the bottle neck for everyday use for quite some time, and until you migrate toward a SSD, you will never see improvements in latency but to a minimum. Newer 1tb hard drives use 500gb platters, having the advantage of using 2 500gb platters vs 3 333gb. Also the higher density platters have less travel distance to find data compared to a 3.5 therefore improving seek time.

    I sacrificed my 750gb 5400 in my 2.3 i7 for 1 80gb intel 320 SSD in main bay, and intel 80gb x25M in the optibay. This thing screams, especially when I had it in raid 0.

    Look into that seagate momentus hard drive hybrid.

    Edit: I just bought my GF a brand new (yes I know it isn't brand new but the battery had 1 charge) 2008 unibody macbook aluminum for $350 and it's only been used once in the past 2 1/2 years and the 160gb hard drive is terribly slow in it, popped a 40gb intel x25v in it and BAM, its super fast and feels as snappy as my i7 monster.
  5. deadwulfe macrumors 6502a


    Feb 18, 2010
    I would suspect that you running Lion on the absolute minimum required amount of RAM may be your problem. I've read plenty of people here saying that Lion should really have access to 4GB of RAM to run smoothly.

    As for having a HDD being the culprit, I don't buy it. Yeah, it's a bottleneck, but no, it shouldn't be causing your computers to beachball. It should just be slow to load. Unless Lion changed something that I don't experience in Snow Leopard with having a HDD, beachballing should be something other than slow data transfers that are the norm for the system.

    The OP might have better luck just scheduling a Genius appointment. Troy14 has already run through diagnostics. I'm assuming they even gave resetting their PRAM a shot? At this point, if they just want to be proactive, might as well take it to the professionals.
  6. rodney00769 macrumors newbie

    Nov 8, 2011
    Spinning Wheel on Mac Pro & Airs

    We have 4 Macbook Airs and 6 Macbook Pro's in our company, all of which were purchased within the last 8 months.
    Of these 3 of the Airs and 4 of the Pro's have been having these issues with the spinning beach ball. I have checked the activity monitor and all have resources free at the time the beach ball starts.
    It just happens randomly and intermittently, so it's proving really difficult to explain to the users why.
    I would find it hard to believe that all of them have HDD issues. One of the Mac Airs does have an SSD drive.
    The only thing that we install on all the machines is Office for Mac 2011.
    Could this possibly have an issue?
    Also... they're all still on the SL, haven't upgraded any of them to Lion as I believe Lion is more resource intensive and don't want to compound the problem.
    We've done the software updates on the machine, and even tried re-installing the o/s.
    We also thought it could have something to do with Time Machine, and subsequently turned off the Time Machine, but still this random SBBOD persists.
    Any suggestions please??
  7. tibi08 macrumors 6502a


    Sep 17, 2007
    Brighton, UK
    I've experienced this same issue. Upgraded RAM from 2GB to 4GB assuming it was the problem, but it still occurs. Very frustrating. Also have Office 2010 installed, in fact I originally installed a beta version so possibly there is a connection to that.

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