3 gbs of memory running chrome, word, and excel?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by blow45, Feb 15, 2012.

  1. blow45, Feb 15, 2012
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2012

    blow45 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2011
    #1
    13 tabs open on chrome, one document on excel, word with no documents, finder and mail. 3 gbs or memory usage? Am I missing something?

    All these with lion on a the latest low end mini with 4 gbs of memory, a mac I bought a week ago.
     

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  2. r0k macrumors 68040

    r0k

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2008
    Location:
    Detroit
    #2
    No need to obsess over RAM on a Mac. Chrome is known to be a bit of a pig and I've seen it cause beachballs on my 2008 Macbook with 4GB of RAM running 10.7.3 if I leave Chrome running for several weeks with 50 to 70 tabs open.

    You mention Excel and Word. I have found Office 2011 to be a resource pig and I recommend closing them when you aren't using them. Also expunge any Microsoft cruft from your login items.

    Lastly you mention Finder and Mail. Finder is almost never the source of resource issues but Mail can drain your Mac if you recently set up a new IMAP account with tens of thousands of messages to download. Once you're done downloading those thousands of messages, and once the sync circles for all of your IMAP accounts stop spinning, Mail should be no resource issue at all.
     
  3. blow45 thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2011
    #3
    thanks buddy! I don't usually obsess over memory in macs, and I 've been a user for a long time, but recently I 've been reading about poor memory management in lion and I said, why not just check what I am running.

    Mail is not really sending or receiving anything.

    Chrome seems to me too to be a hog, but it's just 13 tabs I have.

    Office is a hog too I am sure, but having said this both chrome and office are major usage applications, and anyway we are talking here about one excel document, and no word documents.

    We used to just fly by with 2gbs of memory and they were ample on my imacs with similar usage, and at times much more, then 4gbs seemed to be ample too.

    I just bought a new mac, I am hardly running anything and I 've topped 3gbs of usage? How am I gonna put on my vm and run windows with a couple of (very rudimentary and with few memory requirements) apps?
     
  4. r0k macrumors 68040

    r0k

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2008
    Location:
    Detroit
    #4
    In taking a closer look at your screenshot I see Flash. You really should disable flash in Chrome. You do this by not only installing a flash blocker, you must also enable a relatively little known feature in Chrome called "click to play". This puts all plugins in a state where you must click them to run them. No more monkeys throwing bananas in your face while you are trying to read the news. No more strange voices coming out of your speakers without prior notice. Most importantly, I used to have to close and relaunch Chrome almost every other day. Now that I'm using click to play, I can leave Chrome running for weeks and in my activity monitor, chrome processes average 5 to 50 meg each not 200 meg each. Imagine where I would be with 4 GB of RAM if all 74 of my tabs needed 200 meg of RAM each? Each Chrome tab is its own process with its own threads so it's easy for the OS to shove them off to disk (swap file) if they are inactive and this can slow things down for you.

    Another thing I noticed is it turns out Excel and Word are mere bit players in your situation. Chrome is the big fat greedy resource hippo in your screenshot and running click to play should tame it nicely and prevent OS X from having to pull chrome tabs out of the paging file when you foreground them.
     
  5. blow45 thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2011
    #5
    Thanks again. can you elaborate a bit on the above so I can understand why it's happening with the page file better? Why would the os need to put them in the page file with so much free memory available?

    I used to run safari only and had you know the usual assortment of anti flash plugins, clicktoflash, etc. had opted for html5 in youtube. Unfortunately I had to switch to chrome with apple's stubbornness in allowing for larger fonts in bookmarks and their interface, as well as tabs on top as well as the dreadful monochromatic hell of the interface, in chrome extensions are colorful and I can easily choose them. And I was last one that would install a google product on the mac, but that's what happens when companies such as apple are so stubborn in giving choices for such fundamental usability issues... So I said to heck with safari. After switching to chrome I omitted flash blockers...

    Anyway it's a statement of the sad way the tech industry is run, no matter how you cut it, apple included that we 've made them so mega rich over so many years and yet still you buy a brand new computer and merely by opening your browser you get 75% of your memory taken up. But why should they care if they are interested in eol-ing their products fast so we can buy more?
     
  6. r0k macrumors 68040

    r0k

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2008
    Location:
    Detroit
    #6
    Windows starts paging whether you need it or not and they tell their developers they can't assume anything is in RAM versus paged out. I don't have my OS X developers' documentation in front of me at the moment but I get the impression OS X does a considerably better job of deciding when things need to be "paged out". I'm not saying things are being paged out before memory fills up, but I am saying it happens sooner or later, especially in my case with 70 to 100 tabs open. The beachball is a good clue to let you know the stuff you just clicked on was paged out.

    I notice that as soon as flash starts on any tab for any reason my fans come on. On my Macbook, fans running are the lie detector I used to find out flashblock in Chrome is merely a placebo if the flash ads are being served by google or one of its "trusted affiliates". This is what sent me searching for a real flash blocker and click to play has done the trick.

    For instance, I was creating a text logo for my personal web site. I wanted to change the color scheme and decided it was time to make myself a new logo that matched the new color scheme. I noticed that the moving banners along the edges were fully animated and I assumed they were animated gifs since flashblock was sitting there with a line through it in Chrome allegedly indicating the thing was working properly. When I option clicked on the banners I was so pissed to find out they were flash based and together with all the other flashed based bulls--t on all the tabs I had open, I must have had 400 instances of flash going at the same time! So of course a lot of my stuff had been paged out to virtual memory (disk) and the beachball was my new best frienemy.

    Bottom line: If you run Chrome on OSX and you don't want flash (and other resource hungry things) running behind your back, enable click to play in Chrome. Furthermore be vigilant. Don't be surprised if google disables click to play on their own content at some point in the future.

    As for the 75% of memory thing, I was thinking about this earlier today. I'm even thinking of installing Windows 95 in a virtual machine on my Mac when I get home. I want to try an "old school" browser that doesn't support html 5 and all these "improvements" we have today and I want to see how fast sites load in a browser that isn't saddled with all these so-called "improvements".

    In my mind on today's hardware, new web pages should load faster than the time it takes the click of my mouse to reach my ears. After all, we are talking about the speed of light versus the speed of sound here. Sadly, things that were supposed to improve the web have ruined it. If you view a 15K page with 60K of images, chances are it comes with 300K of javascript and several meg of flash, much of which is served from overloaded ad serving domains like doubleclick that are like pouring molasses in January. I don't run ad block because I'm a low life who doesn't want to "pay" for content by viewing ads. I run ad block because I want same day service when I click on something!
     
  7. blow45 thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2011
    #7
    thanks, supeb post! I am sure other users will find it very useful too. :apple:
     

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