Erratic performance from my MBP. Would appreciate some advice.

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by dh2005, Jan 5, 2012.

  1. dh2005 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 25, 2010
    Hello all,

    My beloved 13" MBP (Zippy's his name...) has started acting like a bit of a dick.

    I've noticed for a few weeks that it takes absolutely ages to start streamed video (YouTube, video reviews on Gamespot etc.). I see the frame into which the video should be running, and it's completely black; then after something like three or four minutes, the video starts to run. It buffers just fine (my internet connection is definitely not the problem), but initiating the video takes forever.

    Added to this, two days ago, I had to turn off Zippy with the power button when OS X decided to hang (permanent pin-wheel spinning over the Safari window). Then, five minutes later, I had to do it again.

    Then, yesterday, I had my first ever kernel panic. Rather freaked me out, after two completely painless years of OS X use...!

    I'm running Snow Leopard, by the way. As you can see from my signature, it's got plenty of RAM to work with. My SSD tends to be pretty full most of the time, but I shouldn't expect that to be a factor; plus, it's been this full before, without messing me around.

    Can anyone comment on this, please? Does it sound like a virus to you? If so, what should I do?

    Many thanks,

  2. MarkMS macrumors 6502a

    Aug 30, 2006
    Few questions for you:

    1. Does this video problem occur with other browsers like Chrome/Firefox? Do you have the latest versions of Flash/Silverlight (if you use these instead of HTML5 versions of Youtube/etc)?

    2. Are there other issues other than the one Kernel Panic or the video problem?

    3. You said the SSD is pretty full, do you keep at least 10-15% of the SSD empty for OS X. You should have at-least 12GB free or OS X tends to start acting like an ass.

    4. This doesn't sound like a virus. Have you installed any shady apps or visited any shady websites that prompted you to download/install a weird plugin? If not, then I'm almost certain it's not a virus/trojan.
  3. dh2005 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jan 25, 2010
    Thanks for the reply.

    1. Umm, not sure. I installed Flash comparatively recently, I think. Like, a couple of months ago. Do I need to manually update these programs?

    2. No, that's all that's happened.

    3. Really?! As much as 12GB?! Jesus, I run Zippy most of the time with 6 or 7GB free. Sometimes less...

    4. Well, actually, I was forced to do something shady the other week. I'd been looking for a legal copy of the now-deleted Halo: Combat Evolved, but the only thing I could find was a used copy on Amazon for £100. So - and this is not my standard MO, at all - I tried to find a torrent.

    I would add, before anyone reports me to the Forum Police, that I was unsuccessful in this endeavour; but it did entail me digging around 'warez' sites, with links to "Russian brides" and 'surprising' pop-ups. I suppose Zippy could've contracted something suspect in that process.
  4. MarkMS, Jan 5, 2012
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2012

    MarkMS macrumors 6502a

    Aug 30, 2006
    About Flash: If I'm not mistaken, Flash needs to be updated manually. I check it once a month to make sure I have the latest in case there is a huge exploit floating around. Flash 11 is pretty slick now too, so having the latest might squash a bug that causes you to buffer a lot.

    One more thing ... I used to have problems with Hulu and Yahoo News videos in Safari, but not in Chrome/Firefox. I'm just going to cut and paste this from another thread I posted on that some others found useful.

    "I finally was able to narrow it down to some sort of incompatibility between 64-bit mode and 32-bit mode in Flash with Safari. I run everything in 64-bit mode, but I guess Flash was in 32-bit mode or something. I went to the Get Info window of Safari (right click Safari> Get Info) and ticked the "Open in 32-bit mode" and it worked. Now all my videos on all services work."

    I don't know if this has been addressed by either Apple or Adobe, but if a fully updated Safari/Flash doesn't work try that tweak.

    About the SSD: Honestly, try freeing some space if it's possible. I know you ran Zippy with a full SSD, but I feel like having a bit of empty space might do it some good. Maybe someone else can tell you specifically (in tech terms) why it's important for it to be somewhat empty. I just know this from Anandtech and other gadget sites that have the 10-15% rule for harddrives (traditional or SSD). I know it's hard. I have a 160GB Intel SSD and I have to juggle between installing/uninstalling games in order to keep 25GB free.

    About a possible virus/trojan: I'm not sure about the latest malware exploits, but unless those warez sites downloaded a .zip or .dmg that you opened and installed, you should be fine. If you need to, you can always download a trial antivirus app to make sure everything is clean.
  5. dh2005 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jan 25, 2010
  6. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    If it doesn't happen again, or very infrequently, don't worry about it.
    "You need to restart your computer" (kernel panic) message appears (Mac OS X v10.5, 10.6)
    Mac OS X 10.7 Help: If “You need to restart your computer” appears
    Macs are not immune to malware, but no true viruses exist in the wild that can run on Mac OS X, and there never have been any since it was released 10 years ago. You cannot infect your Mac simply by visiting a website, unzipping a file, opening an email attachment or clicking on a web link. The only malware in the wild that can affect Mac OS X is a handful of trojans, which cannot infect your Mac unless you actively install them, and they can be easily avoided with some basic education, common sense and care in what software you install. Also, Mac OS X Snow Leopard and Lion have anti-malware protection built in, further reducing the need for 3rd party antivirus apps.

    Performance tips for Mac OS X
  7. ObuckiO macrumors regular

    Dec 9, 2011
    Hello GGJ, I read quite a few of your links on this type of issue, but one that i seen in it was a "Virus Hoax" and the chain letters running through e-mail. What i'm getting at is, i got a few emails that had other contact names in blocks with mine as one of them. I don't think it was an attachment, file or anything like that. I did open an e-mail and it was an AD for something but not really sent from that person. I know you said Snow leopard and lion has stuffed covered, but what would cover this accident/misuse of common sense?
    One more thing: This happened when i had snow leopard(5months ago), but a week ago i put Lion on Mac. So would that clean it up anyway (if even needed to be)?:)
  8. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    As long as you didn't install anything, your system is not infected. There's nothing you need to do.

Share This Page