are all macs like this??

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by olivia, Jun 29, 2006.

  1. olivia macrumors member

    Jun 22, 2006
    i'm a pc user and had been planning on switching over with the macbook. i went to the apple store to test it out and it kept stalling and all i was doing was surfing the web with itunes and a word document open (to see how hot it would get etc).

    the little colored pinwheel thing must have come up like 50 times in the 40 minutes i was tinkering with the computer even for small things like clicking on a link before the page was fully loaded or clicking on photo albums to view pictures etc. it was really annoying.

    are all macs this stall-happy?
  2. iGary Guest


    May 26, 2004
    Randy's House
    You have to realize that t hose machines get poinded by hundred of people a day - changing settings, meesing with features, etc.

    My PM has been running for two months now without one hang.
  3. i4k20c macrumors 6502a


    Sep 10, 2005
    Something you should always do when playing around with a demo computer at a store.. is restart the computer, if you can't manually do it, ask an employee to and than mess around with it, will give you a more realistic feel imo! :eek:
  4. zap2 macrumors 604


    Mar 8, 2005
    Washington D.C
    also it possible it did not have enough ram(read it has 512mbs) and god know how many widgets were going, i mean the ripple is SO fun, people might sit then open the same widget 10 times, to see that cool efffect! And it would kill RAM use(that was simple an example of what Display Mac go through)
  5. olivia thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 22, 2006
    yeah the apple guy did restart the computer...and then it promptly stalled when opening safari, but he said that it was because the store had a really old wireless network that the macbook was "trying to find"

    but it does make sense with the ram...and i did play an awful lot with the widgets and keyboard shortcuts...
  6. Tech607 macrumors member

    Jun 27, 2006
    You also have to be sure that there aren't any other programs that were left running by the last person there. Look at the dock and make sure there aren't 10 little black arrows down there. It happens to me all the time when I am in the Apple Store.
  7. timswim78 macrumors 6502a


    Feb 8, 2006
    Baltimore, MD
    If you are using Word on an Intel Mac with 512MB of RAM, it will seriously slow down. I had an Intel Mini with 512MB of RAM, and it was not very happy whenever I tried to run any PPC applications, such as Word.
  8. yellow Moderator emeritus


    Oct 21, 2003
    Portland, OR
    Yes... and all those of us who use them are touched in the head.
  9. pinetec macrumors member


    Mar 21, 2006
    Red Sox Nation
    I had the same experience. When I first got my Black MacBook I only had 512 MB of RAM. I always had Safari, Mail, MS Word open and I would get the beach ball continously. Once I upgrade to 1GB of RAM I never had the problem again.
  10. vv-tim macrumors 6502

    May 24, 2006
    I never had the pinwheel problem until about two weeks or so ago...

    Honestly, it is fairly annoying. It happens when I have a lot of tabs loaded in Firefox and in some other apps as well. It's not a RAM issue (I have 2GB) and Windows never stalls... but yeah.

    Doesn't happen frequently enough for me to move from my primary day-to-day work in OS X to Windows :p

    OS X = beautiful.
  11. olivia thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 22, 2006
    hm, the last two replies got me really happy and unsure, respectively.

    i'd be buying a macbook from my school computer store and it would come pre-installed with 1GB ram and a 80GB hard drive.

    is 1 GB enough to get through web-surfing, word processing, word, and aim simultaneously? or, like the last poster is experiencing, is the stalling likely to keep happening?

    i almost think it would be less annoying if it would just stall without giving me that pinwheel just spinning at me all the time.
  12. Erasmus macrumors 68030


    Jun 22, 2006
    Hiding from Omnius in Australia
    I'm running a 450Mhz G4 with 512mb of ram... Recently upgraded from 256, without any enhancements I noticed. I very rarely have a stall. So it definitely should not happen on a well kept new computer.
    Must be widgets and apps.

    EDIT: Am running OS 10.4.7 : )
  13. Deepdale macrumors 68000


    May 4, 2005
    New York
    Many give the answer to buy as much RAM as one can afford, and it is hard to dispute that. However, for the apps you cited that would be typically used by you at the same time, 1GB should serve you well. The far more demanding uses such as Photoshop and video editing substantially alter the equation, but you know what your usage will be far better than anyone else. I believe 1GB will be fine.
  14. Mord macrumors G4


    Aug 24, 2003
  15. yellow Moderator emeritus


    Oct 21, 2003
    Portland, OR
    The spinning beachball appears when the underlying task that being requested isn't happening. So which the WindowServer waits, it throws up the spinning beachball of death. It's the equivalent of the hourglass in Windows.

    In most instances, you shouldn't see the beachball. However, it's almost impossible not to see it once in a while. There are a lot of variables involved in the how & why, hardware problems could cause beachballing, poorly coded apps can beachball on you more often, trying to do a million tasks in one application simultaneously can beachball on you, having more RAM should reduce the beachballing effect, etc..

    Ultimately, ask yourself: Are the millions of OS X users all stupid and we all constantly have beachballing? If you answered "no" to this.. good choice. ;)
  16. tekmoe macrumors 68000

    Feb 12, 2005
    i was playing with a macbook the other day at the apple store. somebody jacked that thing up royally. the bottom of the screen where the dock is had been moved even further down. you could only see half of the dock. if you moved the mouse down there, it would disappear at the bottom. it also was stuck on the pinwheel. tried restarting it and same effect. somebody funked it up hard.
  17. Deepdale macrumors 68000


    May 4, 2005
    New York
    Those machines are truly torture tested and put through the mill.
  18. Mr Skills macrumors 6502a

    Mr Skills

    Nov 21, 2005
    Just to reiterate what others have said - no this behaviour is not normal and clearly there was some issue affecting the computer in the shop.

    But just to add one more point: in OSX, if you do get the beachball, it will normally affect only the program you are on. So you might be in Safari and - oh no! - you get the beachball, everything's frozen.... but then move your mouse outside the Safari window and - yay! - everything's happy and normal. You can just force-quit Safari (which works immediately unlike "end task" in Windows) and the problem has not spread (unlike in Windows).

    So if one program DOES crash in OSX, it won't bring down your whole system (unless something has really gone spectacularly wrong!).

    I think you will be absolutely happy with a Mac. I persuaded my parents to get one specifically to cut down the number of tech-support calls I was getting and - guess what - it worked. Plus, if I do get a call, it's always something I can explain over the phone not an unintuitive "have to be in front of the computer to remember" thing like most of Windows.

    Hope that helps! :)
  19. jeremy.king macrumors 603


    Jul 23, 2002
    Fuquay Varina, NC
    then resold as refurbished :eek:
  20. maxvamp macrumors 6502a


    Sep 26, 2002
    Somewhere out there
    The Intel Macs seem to be a lot more sensitive to stalling when there is not enough RAM. I have had my Black MacBook for a month now, and went from 1 GB to 2 GB.

    Normally 1 GB would have been enough, but when running Parallels, it would bring OS X to its knees.

    I wouldn't worry about the pinwheel of death, but instead plan on budgeting for 2 GB of memory ( from somewhere other that Apple due to cost. I used ).

  21. MygoYugo macrumors newbie

    Jun 11, 2006
    Dallas, TX
    I find that force quit doesn't always respond so well. An all too normal situation I encounter is when importing CDs, it gets stuck so I press the "x" button to stop the transfer, and then my MacBook Pro wants to play beachball. I try to force quit the iTunes app which finally executes several minutes after I initiated it. All this accompnied by the repeated whirr of the superdrive being overcome by performance anxiety. Maybe it's a hardware issue with mine, but I didn't feel like I had any power or force in the quitting of the application. Instead, there seems to be a lot of deliberation and negotiating going on.
  22. olivia thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 22, 2006
  23. JoeKarame macrumors regular


    May 2, 2005
    My MBP has been running flawlessly (well, apart from some whining - which only comes when the power plug's in, and can be stopped by simply switching on iSight).

    I'd be a liar if I say that over the nine years of using Macs that I hadn't had one or two 'incidents', but by and large they've been as rock solid as anything and have always been a peasure to use - even when you get the dreaded 'bomb' picture, there's always a rather nice graphic and a multitude of fonts to keep you happy!

    I'm always of the opinion that bar some problems - mainly down to some intrinsic faults in one or two machines, most user problems boil down to people crossing over to Macs from PCs and expecting the need to tinker with everything. You just don't need to!
  24. dextertangocci macrumors 68000

    Apr 2, 2006


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