Become a MacRumors Supporter for $25/year with no ads, private forums, and more!

Desktop slow to refresh

user1234

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 3, 2009
721
498
Sweden
Here's a weird one for you.

Ever since updating to High Sierra I have had a problem with my desktop being slow to refresh. When I take a screenshot or save anything to desktop it takes anywhere from 10 to 60+ seconds for the item to show up. If I create a folder or drag a file to the desktop from finder it shows up immediately. If I do the same thing in Path Finder or through terminal, it's delayed. This applies to both creating and deleting items outside of Finder.

What I have tried so far:
  • Restoring Finder by deleting it's preference file
  • Verifying the disk and filesystem
  • Cleaning up caches with Onyx
None of these things have made any improvements.

To see if it's a problem on system or user account level, I created another account and tested everything there, and no problem! It's just my account that has this problem. There's also another issue with may be related: When I delete stuff from external drives, my trash can will show that it has contents in it, but when opening it in Finder, there's nothing there. I have to eject and remount drives for their trashes to show up and be deleted. This is true both for old drives and brand new drives newly formatted.

So my question is:

Has anyone else has this issue, and solved it? If so, how was it solved?
Does anyone have a clue what service that is responsible for updating finder with file changes? If so I could try clearing some more preference files and see if it helps.

Any help appreciated. I really don't want to start over with a new account.
 

user1234

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 3, 2009
721
498
Sweden
And I started to think I was the only one. Did it start with High Sierra for you too @Doctoreggman ? Do you also have the issue where the trashcan shows as full on the icon, but there is nothing in it when you open it in Finder (with external drives)?
 
  • Like
Reactions: Doctoreggman
Comment

Doctoreggman

macrumors newbie
Jun 23, 2014
17
3
I have not had any experience regarding the trash can showing as full but I am having the issue where files saved to the desktop (screenshots etc) appear to take a very long time to show up, often about 10-20s which is sooooooooo frustrating!

EDIT: And yeah it started when I installed High Sierra
 
Comment

user1234

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 3, 2009
721
498
Sweden
Great! Or you know, not great but I'm not the only one :D

I'm trying different things to try and isolate the problem. Next step is to copy the entire contents of my user directory to a new account and see if the same problem appears on the new account. If so, I'm going to redo it, but copy one thing from ~/Library at a time and see when the issue happens. I don't know if I will have time before Christmas, but I sure want to know whats wrong.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Doctoreggman
Comment

Doctoreggman

macrumors newbie
Jun 23, 2014
17
3
Great! Or you know, not great but I'm not the only one :D

I'm trying different things to try and isolate the problem. Next step is to copy the entire contents of my user directory to a new account and see if the same problem appears on the new account. If so, I'm going to redo it, but copy one thing from ~/Library at a time and see when the issue happens. I don't know if I will have time before Christmas, but I sure want to know whats wrong.

Wow, sounds like a long task. Best of luck!
 
Comment

Fishrrman

macrumors Core
Feb 20, 2009
20,422
7,244
OP wrote:
"To see if it's a problem on system or user account level, I created another account and tested everything there, and no problem! It's just my account that has this problem."
and then said...
"I really don't want to start over with a new account."

Well, something in your current account is mucking things up.
It could be a login item, or it could be some other software you're running.

You said you are on High Sierra.
What version of the OS were you using previously?
Have you considered "going back to it"?

BrianBaughn's suggestion to run Etrecheck is a good one.
Post the results here, perhaps someone will point out the offending software.

But again -- if a "new, clean test account" runs good, but your regular account does not, then it's "something in the account" -- and probably not the OS itself.
 
Comment

tebruno99

macrumors newbie
Mar 16, 2012
20
38
I've been hearing reports of caches becoming corrupt and OSX not knowing what to do with them. I suggest running Onyx and clearing caches. Maybe you'll get lucky and find one causing the problem.
 
  • Like
Reactions: chabig
Comment

Doctoreggman

macrumors newbie
Jun 23, 2014
17
3
Which Mac? Still in shipping config? Any self SSD upgrade? Running in APFS? TRIM enabled?

I'm on a 2017 MBP that was restored from a Time Machine backup from a previous MBP, no upgrades of any sort, just the standard configuration, running in APFS and not sure what TRIM is sorry.
 
Comment

user1234

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 3, 2009
721
498
Sweden
Which Mac? Still in shipping config? Any self SSD upgrade? Running in APFS? TRIM enabled?

iMac 27" 2017, shipping config except for added RAM. APFS yes, TRIM yes.


You might run an Etrecheck report in both accounts to look for any differences.

I just did that. No differences for anything that would matter.


OP wrote:
"To see if it's a problem on system or user account level, I created another account and tested everything there, and no problem! It's just my account that has this problem."
and then said...
"I really don't want to start over with a new account."

Well, something in your current account is mucking things up.
It could be a login item, or it could be some other software you're running.

You said you are on High Sierra.
What version of the OS were you using previously?
Have you considered "going back to it"?

BrianBaughn's suggestion to run Etrecheck is a good one.
Post the results here, perhaps someone will point out the offending software.

But again -- if a "new, clean test account" runs good, but your regular account does not, then it's "something in the account" -- and probably not the OS itself.

Yes, something in my current account is wrong. Login items have been cleared, no difference.
Upgraded from Sierra, not going back. APFS is too valuable, and there are other things that work really well too.


I've been hearing reports of caches becoming corrupt and OSX not knowing what to do with them. I suggest running Onyx and clearing caches. Maybe you'll get lucky and find one causing the problem.

Have already cleared caches with Onyx as stated in my original post.





So right now I have another fun problem with my desktop. There's a file on my desktop that doesn't exist in the filesystem. I can't delete it, because it doesn't exist, and I cant move it on my desktop because it doesn't exist. It's like Finder is disconnected from the filesystem, but only for desktop and trash. Of course, restarting Finder fixes this particular problem.

Maybe Google backup and sync or iCloud Drive is messing something up. I disabled iCloud drive, and I'll see if that helps.
 
Comment

tabraiz21

macrumors newbie
Apr 25, 2017
2
0
Facing Same issue on Windows 10 latest build; only on desktop refresh and right menu tale to much time to perform action
 
Comment

user1234

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 3, 2009
721
498
Sweden
So as far as the slow desktop refresh goes, that problem is solved.

I got some really weird issues yesterday, so I decided to clone my drive to a backup, repartition the drive and create a fresh APFS volume, and then clone my system back. After this I did not have the desktop refresh issue, until I set up Google Backup and Sync again... Then it started happening again. I closed Google backup and sync, and problem solved.

The problem with trash on external drives is however not solved. I don't know yet if yesterdays issues are solved, but I got all kinds of weird stuff happening that screamed filesystem corruption. I was going to open a file from my desktop in the file open dialog, and when I clicked desktop I got an error stating that desktop could not be found. I tried to copy a file to the desktop using Path Finder, but got a "Copying (null) to (null)" message and nothing happened. Networked drives could not be reached. They were mounted, but there was nothing in the mount points.

I'm hoping a fresh filesystem will fix this, otherwise I will have to do a fresh install...


So, @Doctoreggman and @tabraiz21 are you using Google backup and sync? If so, try quitting it, wait a minute or so, and see if it's fixed.
 
  • Like
Reactions: tabraiz21
Comment

Doctoreggman

macrumors newbie
Jun 23, 2014
17
3
So as far as the slow desktop refresh goes, that problem is solved.

I got some really weird issues yesterday, so I decided to clone my drive to a backup, repartition the drive and create a fresh APFS volume, and then clone my system back. After this I did not have the desktop refresh issue, until I set up Google Backup and Sync again... Then it started happening again. I closed Google backup and sync, and problem solved.

The problem with trash on external drives is however not solved. I don't know yet if yesterdays issues are solved, but I got all kinds of weird stuff happening that screamed filesystem corruption. I was going to open a file from my desktop in the file open dialog, and when I clicked desktop I got an error stating that desktop could not be found. I tried to copy a file to the desktop using Path Finder, but got a "Copying (null) to (null)" message and nothing happened. Networked drives could not be reached. They were mounted, but there was nothing in the mount points.

I'm hoping a fresh filesystem will fix this, otherwise I will have to do a fresh install...


So, @Doctoreggman and @tabraiz21 are you using Google backup and sync? If so, try quitting it, wait a minute or so, and see if it's fixed.

Wow good find! I can confirm that after quitting Google backup & sync files appear instantly on the desktop as they originally did.
 
Comment

user1234

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 3, 2009
721
498
Sweden
Wow good find! I can confirm that after quitting Google backup & sync files appear instantly on the desktop as they originally did.

Great! Then we know whats been causing this! I have send feedback to Google through the backup and sync app, and I suggest you do the same. If they get multiple reports on this they may fix it soon. I made sure to include OS version and a thorough description about the problem.
 
  • Like
Reactions: SimoBG
Comment

notrack

macrumors 6502
Feb 19, 2012
415
68
I have the same issue but not limited to desktop. It's everywhere in Finder. I don't have google backup installed.
 
Comment

notrack

macrumors 6502
Feb 19, 2012
415
68
Thanks for the hint. I have Sugarsync and Box Sync installed. Removing them makes no difference.

However, looking into the activity monitor showed that there are two "FinderSyncExt" processes. I don't know where they come from.

Quitting one did nothing. But quitting both makes screenshots appear instantly on the desktop. It automatically creates a new "FinderSyncExt" process.

After re-starting the Mac both processes are there again and also the 10-60 seconds delay is back.

Any idea what this could be?
 

Attachments

  • screenshot.jpg
    screenshot.jpg
    26.7 KB · Views: 482
Comment

user1234

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 3, 2009
721
498
Sweden
Thanks for the hint. I have Sugarsync and Box Sync installed. Removing them makes no difference.

However, looking into the activity monitor showed that there are two "FinderSyncExt" processes. I don't know where they come from.

Quitting one did nothing. But quitting both makes screenshots appear instantly on the desktop. It automatically creates a new "FinderSyncExt" process.

After re-starting the Mac both processes are there again and also the 10-60 seconds delay is back.

Any idea what this could be?

Interesting!

It would seem that there is a problem with folders watched through finder sync. My theory is that there are some bugs with finder sync and APFS, since this only seems to happen with APFS volumes. I haven't tried with HFS+ though so it could not be APFS related at all, but it would seem that there are issues for third party apps interfacing with finder.

Here's the Apple documentation of Finder sync:
https://developer.apple.com/library...eneral/Conceptual/ExtensibilityPG/Finder.html
 
Comment

Fishrrman

macrumors Core
Feb 20, 2009
20,422
7,244
OP wrote:
"Upgraded from Sierra, not going back. APFS is too valuable, and there are other things that work really well too."

Did the slowdowns occur AFTER you upgraded to High Sierra (and APFS)?

If that's the case, APFS can't be all that "valuable".
Instead, it seems to be a liability.

Why do folks blindly believe that "if it's the latest and greatest from Apple, it just has to be better?"
 
Comment

user1234

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 3, 2009
721
498
Sweden
Yes, but they are now solved and was caused by Google backup and sync. APFS is a modern filesystem with copy on write and support for neat things like volumes. I currently have 2 volumes sharing the same space on an external drive. No more wasted space because of hard partition limits.

The only thing I wished they added is file integrity protection and RAID support.
 
Comment

notrack

macrumors 6502
Feb 19, 2012
415
68
I had this also with upgrading to High Sierra.

After doing some testing in the direction of sync extensions, I found the cause for my case.

I had to uninstall the SugarSync app. Just not-launching it wasn't enough – I had to remove all related files via AppCleaner. Now these two FinderSyncExt don't come back in Activity Monitor. Now Files show up instantly as expected. (Thanks user1234!)
 
Last edited:
Comment

user1234

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 3, 2009
721
498
Sweden
I had this also with upgrading to High Sierra.

After doing some testing in the direction of sync extensions, I found the cause for my case.

I had to uninstall the SugarSync app. Just not-launching it wasn't enough – I had to remove all related files via AppCleaner. Now these two FinderSyncExt don't come back in Activity Monitor. Now Files show up instantly as expected. (Thanks user1234!)

I think we have pretty much established that there is an issue with finder sync in high sierra. Are all of you running APFS too? Kinda curious to see if it also happens with HFS+ or if it's APFS related
 
Comment
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.