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RaphaZ

macrumors member
Original poster
Dec 2, 2021
56
13
Hello everyone!

My 2013 MBA is beach balling a lot, between Word, Preview, Safari and Notes multi-tasking. The Word file is big (more than 300 pages, with images) and Preview is showing easily more than 100 pages.
Why is that? Is RAM insufficient? Or is CPU being pushed a lot? I have closed some apps and I do not see clearly through Activity Monitor what is causing it. Could anyone help me?

Thanks!
 

Fishrrman

macrumors Penryn
Feb 20, 2009
24,418
9,750
How much RAM?

I'll guess that you're "pushing against the edge" of installed RAM, and forcing more and more into VM disk swapping. That definitely slows things down.

Can you close one of the apps with the big files?
 
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RaphaZ

macrumors member
Original poster
Dec 2, 2021
56
13
How much RAM?

I'll guess that you're "pushing against the edge" of installed RAM, and forcing more and more into VM disk swapping. That definitely slows things down.

Can you close one of the apps with the big files?
I have 8 GB of RAM, and 128 SSD.
I can't close those apps, because it's the core of my work. I can close Safari, though.
Here you have my Activity Monitor (Portuguese). Any hints?

Captura de ecrã 2022-06-22, às 15.57.42.png
Captura de ecrã 2022-06-22, às 15.57.32.png
 

Fishrrman

macrumors Penryn
Feb 20, 2009
24,418
9,750
Actually, the graphic looks pretty good.
No swap used at all, looks like 3gb of memory is "free".
 
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svenmany

macrumors demi-god
Jun 19, 2011
743
369
Do you have the documents on an external drive? I get a lot of delays and beach balls, seemingly caused by the disks spinning up/down unexpectedly.
 

RaphaZ

macrumors member
Original poster
Dec 2, 2021
56
13
Do you have the documents on an external drive? I get a lot of delays and beach balls, seemingly caused by the disks spinning up/down unexpectedly.
No, the only thing is running externally is an external monitor.
 

RaphaZ

macrumors member
Original poster
Dec 2, 2021
56
13
That could be with such an older machine punching 4K will eat onto processor cycles constantly push 4K! So run at 1080p with an older Mac!
But the monitor is an old Samsung, from 2009 or 2010. It is even a VGA connection. Would it punch like that? And would a HDMI connection help it?
 

svenmany

macrumors demi-god
Jun 19, 2011
743
369
When does your computer hang? Does it hang when switching between the applications? Does it hang when scrolling through those large documents? Does it hang when the large documents are not open?
 

jav6454

macrumors Core
Nov 14, 2007
20,840
4,792
1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
Hello everyone!

My 2013 MBA is beach balling a lot, between Word, Preview, Safari and Notes multi-tasking. The Word file is big (more than 300 pages, with images) and Preview is showing easily more than 100 pages.
Why is that? Is RAM insufficient? Or is CPU being pushed a lot? I have closed some apps and I do not see clearly through Activity Monitor what is causing it. Could anyone help me?

Thanks!
Type of storage drive used? I am assuming SSD.
 
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RaphaZ

macrumors member
Original poster
Dec 2, 2021
56
13
When does your computer hang? Does it hang when switching between the applications? Does it hang when scrolling through those large documents? Does it hang when the large documents are not open?
Example, it hangs when typing in Word, probably after switching from a Pdf (in full screen mode). Sometimes it hangs on saving the document. When beach balls appear on Word I dont like it, because it is the core of my thesis, and the very possibility of loosing this document is a nightmare. Is this kind of multitasking related to that?
 

svenmany

macrumors demi-god
Jun 19, 2011
743
369
Example, it hangs when typing in Word, probably after switching from a Pdf (in full screen mode). Sometimes it hangs on saving the document. When beach balls appear on Word I dont like it, because it is the core of my thesis, and the very possibility of loosing this document is a nightmare. Is this kind of multitasking related to that?
From those examples you seem to be saying that Word is hanging. It's probably struggling with your large document.

It's probably not so much just having 300 pages, it's the kind of content on those pages. I'm afraid I'm not a heavy Word user.
 
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mi7chy

macrumors G3
Oct 24, 2014
9,810
10,608
How full is your SSD since that may potential cause slowdown when it's nearly full. Also, check your SSD SMART health. That said I've gotten beach balls after doing simple SMB network file copy/paste so other things may trigger it.
 
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RaphaZ

macrumors member
Original poster
Dec 2, 2021
56
13
How full is your SSD since that may potential cause slowdown when it's nearly full. Also, check your SSD SMART health. That said I've gotten beach balls after doing simple SMB network file copy/paste so other things may trigger it.
Thanks! My SSD is at 60/70% full capacity.
What is SMB? How do I check SMART health?
 

Saturn007

macrumors 6502a
Jul 18, 2010
835
588
When beach balls appear on Word I dont like it, because it is the core of my thesis, and the very possibility of loosing this document is a nightmare.

That should never be a concern IF YOU ARE SAVING AND BACKING UP YOUR DOCUMENT REGULARLY!

Follow this advice:

No matter all the advice given above - Backups, backups, backups - Regularly.

SAVING

You should save your thesis after every major change; yo should save a new version of it every day or every half day, adding the date to its name.

BACKING UP

You should have an automatic backup system in place, such as via Time Machine, and back up on schedule to an external hard drive.

In addition, most major universities will provide storage space to students for backing up.

Use iCloud Drive, too, as you are on Apple.

NEVER HAVE FEAR IF YOU'RE DOING THIS RIGHT!

Talk to your university tech support people, too.

If needed, break your thesis into three or four parts, i.e., 3 or 4 separate documents, so that youndon't run into this problem.

Which version of Word is it?
 
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RaphaZ

macrumors member
Original poster
Dec 2, 2021
56
13
That should never be a concern IF YOU ARE SAVING AND BACKING UP YOUR DOCUMENT REGULARLY!

Follow this advice:



SAVING

You should save your thesis after every major change; yo should save a new version of it every day or every half day, adding the date to its name.

BACKING UP

You should have an automatic backup system in place, such as via Time Machine, and back up on schedule to an external hard drive.

In addition, most major universities will provide storage space to students for backing up.

Use iCloud Drive, too, as you are on Apple.

NEVER HAVE FEAR IF YOU'RE DOING THIS RIGHT!

Talk to your university tech support people, too.

If needed, break your thesis into three or four parts, i.e., 3 or 4 separate documents, so that youndon't run into this problem.

Which version of Word is it?
Thanks for the hints! I'll do those backups more often.
I've already iCloud, and my university offers a nice cloud service, I will see that option too.

My version is 16.62 (Office 365).
 
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