Does 259 wallpaper images negatively effect CPU and/or RAM?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by magentawave, Aug 18, 2016.

  1. magentawave, Aug 18, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2016

    magentawave macrumors regular

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    #1
    I have 259 wallpaper images that change every 5 minutes on the screen of my 2008 (or 09?) Macbook Pro 17 and 24" external monitor. My Mac has only 6 GB's of RAM. Do those changing wallpaper images negatively effect CPU and/or RAM?

    The reason I'm asking is because according to Memory Monitor I often have only 1% RAM left when I have multiple tabs open in Firefox.

    Thanks
     
  2. JTToft macrumors 68040

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    #2
    How is the memory pressure graph? That's what matters.
     
  3. magentawave thread starter macrumors regular

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    #3
  4. Schranke macrumors 6502

    Schranke

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    #4
    Well any action will affect the CPU and RAM.
    In the case of having the background change every 5 min the effect will be negative no mater how you look at it due to the system have one more task. But i doubt it will have a huge enough impact so that you notice it in your daily usage
     
  5. barbu macrumors regular

    barbu

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    #5

    6 GB is still, for most intents and purposes, a completely reasonable amount of memory. It is normal for OS X to grab all the RAM it can, it's not unusual nor is it a problem. Are you getting constant beachballs? Sluggish performance when switching apps? If not, don't worry about it, quit activity monitor, and happy computing. If so, I still wouldn't necessarily blame a memory shortage.
    My MB Air only has 4 GB and i can run multiple virtual OSes and productivity apps without crapping out (not doubt due to good swap speeds thanks to the flash storage). I think it's safe to say that swapping desktop images and some light browsing is not overwhelming your system.
     
  6. magentawave thread starter macrumors regular

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    #6
    I think I have everything pared down as far as I can go, but can you think of anything else I can do to minimize RAM usage? Like I said before, Firefox is a huge memory hog (with only 6 addons) and crashes a lot so I use it for browsing and Chrome for stuff that matters that it not crash, like working on a website, etc.

    Am I destined to always struggle with RAM with my old 6 GB max Macbook Pro until the day I buy a newer one that holds more RAM?
     
  7. JTToft macrumors 68040

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    #7
    - It doesn't matter how much you have left according to those figures. The memory pressure graph is all green, so you aren't about to run out of memory.
    (I have 68 MB free on 16 GB with green pressure graph and thus no performance issues.)

    OS X is made to utilise as much memory as is available to ensure good performance, and it prioritises between applications. So if something else needs the memory that is now "used", it will be freed up and allocated to the application that needs it most.

    Are you experiencing any negative impact on performance?
     
  8. T5BRICK macrumors 604

    T5BRICK

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    #8
    Down at the bottom of that screen, there is a green graph. That indicates your memory pressure. If it is green or yellow, you're fine.

    OS X is perfectly capable of managing the memory in your system. It is pretty normal for it to use as much memory as possible.
     
  9. JTToft macrumors 68040

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    #9
    Also, if your machine is a Unibody model, it can take 8 GB RAM.
     
  10. magentawave thread starter macrumors regular

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    #10
    Not yet but I will soon. (See my reply below.)



    The memory pressure was/is fine at the moment I took the screen shot but that was only because I had just started using my computer today. For example, right now with only two tabs open in FF I'm at 8.8% free memory, but if I open more tabs plus Screenflow and Quicktime then I will hit -1% very quickly.



    It's not the unibody so I'm stuck at 6 GB.
     
  11. JTToft macrumors 68040

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    #11
    - Well, again, those figures don't matter. Do what you usually do and then look at the pressure graph. If it's red, you're in trouble; if not, you're fine.
     
  12. magentawave thread starter macrumors regular

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    #12
    But like I said before, when I took the screen shot of the Activity Monitor I was NOT in trouble - but when I start using other intensive programs the memory pressure will turn to red. I started this thread not because I was having the memory issue then but because I run into this issue throughout the day.
     
  13. !!! macrumors 6502

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    #13
    Does it actually turn red? Or are you just assuming it will?
     
  14. JTToft macrumors 68040

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    #14
    - Fair. This is the first you're mentioning of actual issues or a red pressure graph. Up until now you had just cited the free memory figures which don't mean much.

    You may consider putting in a reasonably inexpensive SSD to lessen the impact of swapping to storage when the RAM runs out.
    And try to use Safari as much as possible rather than Firefox or Chrome.
     
  15. robvas macrumors 68020

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    USA
    #15
    Changing your wallpaper every 5 minutes takes a very insignificant amount of CPU power.

    Back in the old days if you had a 25MHz Mac and 4MB of RAM removing a large wallpaper would help a little bit (1024x768 @ 256 colors is almost a meg of ram!) but on today's computers it is truly insignifcant
     
  16. Ries macrumors 68000

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    Apr 21, 2007
    #16
    The number of images doesn't matter, it loads it from disk before changing the wallpaper. It doesn't load the image into RAM until it has to use it (other than the file cache, which doesn't count as RAM usage as it is discarded if that RAM is needed).
     
  17. barbu macrumors regular

    barbu

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    #17
    Quoting myself since i didn't see an answer. Leave Activity Monitor closed. Use you computer as normal. Do you find that there are actual, noticeable performance issues? If Firefox crashes frequently, I'd just go back to Safari. Chrome is a mega-memory hog too.
     

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