Am I having memory leakage??

Discussion in 'macOS' started by PB_deprived, May 21, 2005.

  1. PB_deprived macrumors newbie

    Jan 19, 2005
    Southern CA

    I'm getting a little frustrated. I have a 1.67 PG 1.5GB ram running 10.4.1. I use activity monitor to keep an eye on my ram usage in the dock, because i always like to know how much i've got free since i usually run a bunch of programs. When I first boot up, I have about 1.3GB of ram free. As I open and close applications throughout the day however, my amount of free ram gets smaller and smaller. So, after a few hours of use, i only show 200-300 MB free, even when everything with only the finder open. When i check in activity monitor, i have a very very large chunk of ram that is "inactive". The only way I've found to free my ram up again is to restart. So, my question is, do i have memory leaks going on, or is this an issue with activity monitor not registering my free ram after an app is quit? And what does the "inactive" ram in activity monitor mean? Isn't that kinda saying that it's free? This has been frustrating me for a while. If you guys could shed some light on this, I'd really appreciate it.

  2. smokeyrabbit macrumors 6502

    May 19, 2005
    Escape from New England
    OS X manages memory differently than OS 9 did. It will frequently keep applications in memory as long as it's (the memory) not needed in order to speed subsequent launches. It also loads the system in over time to improve your performance. This is totally normal and not a cause for alarm. There is no point in having large chunks of free memory in a modern operating system. If you are constantly having to wait on disk swaps then just upgrade your memory, but it sounds like you are not. If it needs to access more memory, it will dump the inactive RAM contents to virtual memory.

    Hold your mouse pointer over the memory labels in the activity monitor and it will tell you what they mean.

    So, don't try to control the system's memory usage, it does it just fine by itself.
  3. john1123 macrumors regular


    Jan 26, 2005
    Down Under
    Inactive RAM is not used by any applications. Mac OSX will overwrite inactive RAM when the need arises (when you are out of free RAM)
  4. PB_deprived thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 19, 2005
    Southern CA

    That helps a lot and puts my mind at ease. Nothing to worry about after all. Thanks a lot guys
  5. TreeHugger macrumors 6502

    Jun 30, 2004
    What would you have to worry about with a mac? Maybe spending too much time with it? :rolleyes:
  6. isus macrumors regular

    Jan 13, 2004
    If it irritates you, you can open terminal and type "du -sx /". Let it run for a few moments, watch inactive move to free, and then press Ctrl-C. Quit Terminal. You won't regain everything you had from a fresh restart, but it helps prevent paging to disk, which will slow your computer down some.
  7. Cuckoo macrumors 6502

    May 2, 2003
    The Netherlands - Utrecht
    Actually the more inactive memory the better... the smaller the part of free memory the better... Only if there is too little inactive memory and no free memory, then that MIGHT indicate some memory shortage..

    but so far, nothign to worry about, your system is -memorywise- as healthy as it can be
  8. michaelrjohnson macrumors 68020

    Aug 9, 2000
    Wasn't involved in the conversation, but thanks for the info!
  9. jmort macrumors member

    Jun 10, 2005
    Southern CA
    I tried typing "du -sx /" in the terminal, but it returned a bunch of directory paths with "permission denied" after it. I typed it exactly as I wrote above, am I doing it correctly, or is there another step I'm missing?


    P.S. what's the ctrl-c command for?


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