Added RAM in 2009 Mac Pro Not Effective

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by schwine1, Jan 15, 2015.

  1. schwine1 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2008
    #1
    I have a 2009 Mac Pro, and I increased RAM from 500 MB to 32 GB (1066 MHz DDR3). However, I have not noticed any appreciable difference in the speed of any applications. For example, when I have several software programs open, or several browser tabs open, I may even experience Mac's so-called "spinning beach ball of death."

    Shouldn't the increase of RAM to 32 GB help with these kind of slow down issues? Or is the problem that the 2009 Mac Pro can only benefit from so much RAM, and after that increased RAM is not effective? Thanks for any tips.
     
  2. Lucas Godfrey macrumors 6502

    Lucas Godfrey

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    Somewhere between Here and There
    #2
    500 mb?
     
  3. h9826790 macrumors 604

    h9826790

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2014
    Location:
    Hong Kong
    #3
    1) How can your Mac Pro 4,1 has only 500MB RAM?

    2) Which OSX version you are talking about?

    3) More RAM only helps AFTER the software successfully loaded from HDD, it won't speed up the loading process. If you looking for fast loading time, you need a SSD.

    4) More RAM only helps if the "beach ball" is due to lack of RAM. However, beach ball not necessary come from lack of RAM.
     
  4. seveej macrumors 6502a

    seveej

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2009
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    #4
    Sir, beg your pardon

    Did you really say, you've been running a 2009 Mac Pro with only 500 (512) megabytes of RAM? That would indeed surprise me, as:
    - 2009 Mac pros were shipped with a minimum of 3 gigs of ram (3x1 GB)
    - 512 megabyte PC-8500 sticks are (and were very rare), especially as ECC
    - Even if you had stayed with 10.5 (a.k.a Leopard) to this day, even the operating system would have been massively slow.

    RGDS,
     
  5. Lucas Godfrey macrumors 6502

    Lucas Godfrey

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    #5
    Are we posting in a troll thread? :D
     
  6. schwine1 thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2008
    #6
    Sorry for the mistake. The increase in RAM was from 3 GB to 32 GB (DDR3).
    The original OSX was Mountain Lion and now it's Mavericks 10.9.5.
     
  7. h9826790 macrumors 604

    h9826790

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2014
    Location:
    Hong Kong
    #7
    The original OSX for 4,1 should be 10.5.

    Anyway, did you perform a clean install when upgrade to Mavericks?

    10.9.5 should be very good on utilising 32G RAM. However, my personal feeling is that any OSX beyond 10.6 was designed base on SSD performance. On 10.7 and 10.8, normal HDD still OK. But 10.9.5 on the original Apple 640G HDD is a nightmare. You will see a lot of beachball just after boot up or when loading large apps.

    I suggest that you buy at least a small 128G SSD for the OS and apps, which will make you feel that your 4,1 like a new machine. No need to spend too much on the PCIe SSD, just a normal SATA SSD, plug that into the optical bay is enough for this particular purpose.

    However, once again, if the beach ball is due to some improper software installed. Neither the RAM or SSD can fix it.
     
  8. AidenShaw macrumors P6

    AidenShaw

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2003
    Location:
    The Peninsula
    #8
    Not completely true.

    More RAM means that the file caches will be larger and more effective, and after the system gets a little use many of the common libraries will be cached which will speed up the even the first load of an app.

    And of course, the second and later times that you run an app it will be loaded from cache. (And the cache is much, much faster than an SSD.)
     

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