Getting page outs means i'm using all my ram, right?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by rockinrocker, Jan 14, 2008.

  1. rockinrocker macrumors 65816


    Aug 21, 2006
    that's what "page outs" means, right?

    here's the weird thing though, my iStat pie chart only shows about 3/4's of it or so being used. does anybody know if that just refers to app. usage of ram or what?

    and also i'm pretty sure my main recording app (Cubase 4) can access up to 3 gig (although there is some debate on this point, 3 gig seems to be the low guess), so why wouldn't that last bit be used?

    the only thing i can think of is that istat doesn't show system usage or something, but that doesn't seem to make much sense.

    anyone got any ideas?
  2. fistful macrumors 6502a


    Mar 29, 2004
    As far as I've heard you only need to worry about page outs when it's higher than your page ins.
  3. WildCowboy Administrator/Editor


    Staff Member

    Jan 20, 2005
    Yes, page outs are when you don't enough room in RAM, and some of the data has to be sent to the disk. But you shouldn't worry about just a few page outs, as there will inevitably very brief spikes in your RAM usage that will result in page outs but don't really affect performance. A large number of page outs is a good indication that you may want to consider more RAM though. Everybody has a different rule of thumb, but a popular one is that if page ins are less than 10x your page outs, think about adding some RAM.

    But the most important thing is how the system feels to you. If it feels sluggish and you're getting "beach balls," that's the best sign of all that you'd likely benefit from boosting the RAM.
  4. rockinrocker thread starter macrumors 65816


    Aug 21, 2006
    well, this afternoon after running through some of my biggest projects i had some like 250,000 to 300,000 page outs, so i guess that sounds like quite a bit.:D
    but it sounds like from what you guys are saying it's the ratio that's more important, and i don't remember for sure how many page ins there were, but it was also in the 6 figure range.

    as far as the feel of the performance, it's not so much that i'm getting beach balls as starting to get crackling and what not when i have large amounts of virtual instruments running (which i believe are for the most part loaded into ram).

    thanks for the input.
  5. newtech macrumors 6502

    Jun 2, 2007
    Page outs are data sent to virtual memory to free up real RAM and are nothing that slows performance much. Performance takes a much larger hit when page ins occur ( loading RAM from VM, usually seen as the spinning beachball )

    Audio and video editing have better performance when given vast amounts of real RAM memory, VM is their bane.
  6. mmccaskill macrumors 6502

    Jan 3, 2007
    My MacBook (2.0GHz, 2GB) has been up for 24d 1h 20m (since 22:12 Dec 21), I've been using quick sleep. I'll have Eclipse, Safari, Camino, TextMate, Terminal, Preview, Mail, iCal, iChat, iTunes, and a few others open at the same time.

    As of this moment (I only have Safari open) my vmstats are:
    Wired: 324MB
    Active: 575MB
    Inactive: 268MB
    Free: 874MB
    Swap: 701MB/1.0GB
    Page Ins: 2.6mil
    Page Outs: 129,713

    Hope this helps.
  7. rockinrocker thread starter macrumors 65816


    Aug 21, 2006
    so 1.6 mil. to 129,713 is a pretty good ratio then? 'cause my ins and outs are a lot closer than that...

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