Giving up hope that spinning beachball will ever go away

dmj102

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Oct 30, 2013
253
46
Canada
With the last Mavericks update, I was so hopeful that my split second spinning beachballs would disappear for good. It seems to be happening more now. I never ever had this with Mountain Lion. It's so annoying. If anyone was able to fix this, can you tell me how?
 

Shrink

macrumors G3
Feb 26, 2011
8,931
1,606
New England, USA
With the last Mavericks update, I was so hopeful that my split second spinning beachballs would disappear for good. It seems to be happening more now. I never ever had this with Mountain Lion. It's so annoying. If anyone was able to fix this, can you tell me how?
No offense intended, but I really don't understand all the fuss about the appearance of a beach ball for all of 1/10 of a second. The reaction is as if this were some horrible event.

Just one man's confused response...:confused:
 

blueroom

macrumors 603
Feb 15, 2009
6,381
25
Toronto, Canada
With the last Mavericks update, I was so hopeful that my split second spinning beachballs would disappear for good. It seems to be happening more now. I never ever had this with Mountain Lion. It's so annoying. If anyone was able to fix this, can you tell me how?
Reinstall ML or don't let it bother you.
 

old-wiz

macrumors G3
Mar 26, 2008
8,315
225
West Suburban Boston Ma
No offense intended, but I really don't understand all the fuss about the appearance of a beach ball for all of 1/10 of a second. The reaction is as if this were some horrible event.

Just one man's confused response...:confused:
I see the beachballs, but they are sooo brief. They are not even long enough for me to time it. I don't see a reason for all of the threads about people going crazy about the beachballs. Are they a bit too OCD?

----------

Reinstall ML or don't let it bother you.
Some people report that doesn't stop the beachbals.
 

Ddyracer

macrumors 68000
Nov 24, 2009
1,786
31
No offense intended, but I really don't understand all the fuss about the appearance of a beach ball for all of 1/10 of a second. The reaction is as if this were some horrible event.

Just one man's confused response...:confused:
it's annoying. plain and simple. Luckily i think it's gone for me in 10.9.2 seed.
 

dmj102

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Oct 30, 2013
253
46
Canada
Wow, thanks for the constructive replies. Why did I even bother posting on here? My point being is that ML didn't have it. I just bought my MBP last year and I didn't have it. The spinning beachballs makes me think that my OS X is faulty and I get 20 plus per the day now.

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it's annoying. plain and simple. Luckily i think it's gone for me in 10.9.2 seed.
Thanks @Ddyracer. I hope it will be for me too in the next update.
 

Shrink

macrumors G3
Feb 26, 2011
8,931
1,606
New England, USA
Wow, thanks for the constructive replies. Why did I even bother posting on here? My point being is that ML didn't have it. I just bought my MBP last year and I didn't have it. The spinning beachballs makes me think that my OS X is faulty and I get 20 plus per the day now.

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Thanks @Ddyracer. I hope it will be for me too in the next update.


The post above suggests that only replies that agree with it's content are acceptable. Those who are not disturbed by the practically unmeasurably brief beach balls are not "constructive replies".

If one's point in posting is only to receive validation for what appears, to some, to be excessive agita at practically invisible glitches...then the question of whether one should have posted or not is answered
 

Gochugogi

macrumors regular
Oct 27, 2013
223
26
Sandwich Isles
The only time I see the beach ball is when a sleeping external drive needs to spin up after clicking a file. Before 10.9 I merely got a lag. Now I get the same lag but with a beach ball icon.
 

T'hain Esh Kelch

macrumors 603
Aug 5, 2001
5,157
4,711
Denmark
I see it everywhere, and it happens from 1 to 15 seconds randomly.

How can it take 5-10 seconds to open a new Pages document or open the special characters window, or opening a Finder window, on a quad i7 with plenty of RAM?

Mavericks has been a big let down.
 

crjackson2134

macrumors 601
Mar 6, 2013
4,735
1,868
Charlotte, NC
I see it everywhere, and it happens from 1 to 15 seconds randomly.

How can it take 5-10 seconds to open a new Pages document or open the special characters window, or opening a Finder window, on a quad i7 with plenty of RAM?

Mavericks has been a big let down.
That does seem quite excessive. I seldom see a beach ball on my system. If I (and this is just me) were having that kind of annoyance I would switch back to ML until some update gets is sorted (surmising ML didn't have the aforementioned problem).

On the few occasions I've witnessed this issue (including when using ML) it was reduced or stopped altogether by changing the setting that spins down drives when possible. I've got a couple of drives that have there own sleep firmware settings and if accessing those drives, I would see the issue sometimes.
 

KoolAid-Drink

macrumors 65816
Sep 18, 2013
1,422
405
USA
I get the spinning beach ball quite often as well, been there in 10.9.0 and 10.9.1. It's a bit annoying because it has this psychological factor that makes you think your Mac is buggy/flaking out (because, ordinarily, when the spinning beach ball appears, that means there's a lag or issue with software/hardware). So, even though the underlying technology is fine, and there's no lag, the constant beach ball appearance leads one to THINK there is some kind of issue.

That's why I hope (and think) Apple should fix whatever's causing those beach balls, by 10.9.2 hopefully.
 

dmj102

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Oct 30, 2013
253
46
Canada
I was looking for any suggestions. Did find this site with some tips on getting rid of beachballs because I will try anything reasonable. I really don't want to reinstall Mavericks.

http://www.macattorney.com/rbb.html

I ran Disk Utility > Repair Disk Permissions again and found that there were a lots of repairs with the iBook app.

Also, I deleted Spotlight and generated a new one.
 

T'hain Esh Kelch

macrumors 603
Aug 5, 2001
5,157
4,711
Denmark
That does seem quite excessive. I seldom see a beach ball on my system. If I (and this is just me) were having that kind of annoyance I would switch back to ML until some update gets is sorted (surmising ML didn't have the aforementioned problem).
It absolutely is! I am certainly not a Mac novice, but this has really left me puzzled. Loads of free RAM, almost no CPU being used, and it can lock up randomly. And it has only started after Mavericks has been installed.

It literally feels as if I out of RAM, or harddrive space so that there's no room for a scratch disk - Very strange, since I have 60GB free. I am hoping that it has something to do with Mavericks new smart energy saving features, and I have just encountered a major bug, but still...

I'll soon invest in an SSD, and then I'll reinstall Mavericks from the bottom up. Maybe that'll fix it.
 

TallGuyGT

macrumors 6502
Aug 8, 2011
287
447
NYC
it's annoying. plain and simple. Luckily i think it's gone for me in 10.9.2 seed.

Same for me. I found it very annoying, but seems to be fixed in 10.9.2.

----------

I'll soon invest in an SSD, and then I'll reinstall Mavericks from the bottom up. Maybe that'll fix it.
At this point I'd just wait on 10.9.2 before doing a clean install. Seems like it's fixed the problems and has good improvements.
 

Mumford

macrumors regular
Oct 8, 2006
181
2
Altadena, CA
Anyone who is experiencing beachballs, can you try disabling memory compression and seeing if it goes away?

Open a terminal and type this, then reboot:
Code:
$ sudo nvram boot-args="vm_compressor=1"
Password:
$
You can restore memory compression to its original value by deleting the boot-args firmware variable like so, then rebooting:

Code:
$ sudo nvram -d boot-args
Password:
$
(from this thread).
 

chevalier433

macrumors 6502a
Mar 30, 2011
510
13
With the last Mavericks update, I was so hopeful that my split second spinning beachballs would disappear for good. It seems to be happening more now. I never ever had this with Mountain Lion. It's so annoying. If anyone was able to fix this, can you tell me how?
Fancy app nap is the cause.I'm afraid they will never disappear this getting worse if you have lower speed disk,for hdd users is a pure nightmare.Except this also reduce performance for apps.
 

lamerica80

macrumors 6502a
May 22, 2008
596
279
No offense intended, but I really don't understand all the fuss about the appearance of a beach ball for all of 1/10 of a second. The reaction is as if this were some horrible event.

Just one man's confused response...:confused:
Same reason people gasp in horror at a tiny scuff on their iphone - its apples fault for marketing (and pricing) their products as super premium that "just works" => users expect complete and utter perfection in their performance.

Me, i can live with the occasional beach ball since i still remember my windows days where a daily re-boot was routine.
 

dmj102

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Oct 30, 2013
253
46
Canada
Fancy app nap is the cause.I'm afraid they will never disappear this getting worse if you have lower speed disk,for hdd users is a pure nightmare.Except this also reduce performance for apps.
Is there a way to disable app nap?
 

LV426

macrumors 6502a
Jan 22, 2013
953
437
The beach ball springs into action when the system deems that it's waiting 'too long' for something to happen. It may be that the current setting is a little twitchy, and it's a little too eager to get in your face.

As to the reasons why... well, they are boundless. For example, yesterday I was preparing to upload a photobook for purchase in Aperture, and a beach ball appeared. Why? Because the program was attempting to communicate with an Apple server, and the server wasn't responding in a timely fashion.

Saving that file to disk, and you happen to have a drive that's reporting physical errors? You're going to get a beach ball.

Creating a new iCloud document and your ISP is having a spot of bother? You're going to get a beach ball.

Spotlight is working dead hard at indexing your file system, and some other processes are aggressively working with files? You're going to get a beach ball.

There's probably a setting somewhere that tells your computer how long it should wait before activating the beach ball.

As for myself, it doesn't happen on my computer that often, and when it does, I'm glad to know that the system is waiting on something to happen in the background.
 

dmj102

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Oct 30, 2013
253
46
Canada
Right click on the application and tick "prevent app nap" option.
I don't have that option for some reason.

I'm still debating on whether to do a fresh install of Mavericks. That's a lot of work, time, and no guarantees. I've read on here that others tried that and the beachballs were still there afterwards.
 

DeltaMac

macrumors G4
Jul 30, 2003
10,272
2,700
Delaware
Get Info for your app (right-click menu, choose Get Info, among other choices). That information window should show the checkbox for App Nap there.
 

ElectricSheep

macrumors 6502
Feb 18, 2004
498
3
Wilmington, DE
The beach ball springs into action when the system deems that it's waiting 'too long' for something to happen. It may be that the current setting is a little twitchy, and it's a little too eager to get in your face.

As to the reasons why... well, they are boundless. For example, yesterday I was preparing to upload a photobook for purchase in Aperture, and a beach ball appeared. Why? Because the program was attempting to communicate with an Apple server, and the server wasn't responding in a timely fashion.

Saving that file to disk, and you happen to have a drive that's reporting physical errors? You're going to get a beach ball.

Creating a new iCloud document and your ISP is having a spot of bother? You're going to get a beach ball.

Spotlight is working dead hard at indexing your file system, and some other processes are aggressively working with files? You're going to get a beach ball.

There's probably a setting somewhere that tells your computer how long it should wait before activating the beach ball.

As for myself, it doesn't happen on my computer that often, and when it does, I'm glad to know that the system is waiting on something to happen in the background.
Just for some clarification, its the Window Server that is responsible for throwing up the spinning beach ball when a process's event-handling thread (there is only one, and its usually the default thread) stops responding to events from the Window Server for a pre-determined period of time. That value might be configurable, but it could also be baked into the Window Server itself.

There used to be a nice Developer Tool called "Spin Control" that would automatically sample processes exhibiting the spinning beach ball. It was discontinued in Xcode 4.2 in favor of Instruments. Instruments does have a Spin Monitor in its library which should automatically sample a process that is "spinning"; getting to it is rather cumbersome but if you are exhibiting a lot of spins it might be worth checking it out to see what is up.
 

KoolAid-Drink

macrumors 65816
Sep 18, 2013
1,422
405
USA
Can anyone on the current 10.9.2 developer build confirm if the random spinning beachballs has disappeared completely? Is this being discussed over at the developer forums at Apple?
 

Ddyracer

macrumors 68000
Nov 24, 2009
1,786
31
Can anyone on the current 10.9.2 developer build confirm if the random spinning beachballs has disappeared completely? Is this being discussed over at the developer forums at Apple?
I'm on 13C32 first .2 seed. it's gone. haven't seen it since i updated. That said, who knows? it might come back.
 
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