joedec

macrumors 6502
Jul 25, 2014
422
33
Cupertino
One other thing, I noticed after a small period of inactivity, ~60 secs, the helpd process terminates. BTW this is on a Mac mini 2014. Are all you guys seeing this on the M1? None of my machines are new, all Intel.
 

Populus

macrumors 68000
Aug 24, 2012
1,950
2,180
Valencia, Spain.
One other thing, I noticed after a small period of inactivity, ~60 secs, the helpd process terminates. BTW this is on a Mac mini 2014. Are all you guys seeing this on the M1? None of my machines are new, all Intel.
Well, now that you mention it, I still have a 2014 Mac mini with a Catalina installation, and I'm going to check it right now (I've barely used it since I got the M1 MBA)
 

cuellar

macrumors newbie
Dec 23, 2020
8
0
Yes, mine is Mac mini M1. I also have a MBP with Mojave and there is no issue with helpd. Could it be related with Rosetta 2?
 

Populus

macrumors 68000
Aug 24, 2012
1,950
2,180
Valencia, Spain.
Yes, mine is Mac mini M1. I also have a MBP with Mojave and there is no issue with helpd. Could it be related with Rosetta 2?
At this point, there are 3 open possibilities:

- Apps inducing this issue
- A Rosetta 2 related issue
- An Apple Silicon (including T2 chip) issue.

I’ll reinstall the operating system with a complete wipe of the SSD, and won’t install Rosetta 2, using just native apps.
 
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Marcopolo53

macrumors regular
Oct 21, 2016
136
24
Toronto
Have just checked Activity Monitor while running BS and can find 12 - 15 instances of help dameons but zero instances of helpd anywhere. To repeat myself, on an Erase and Clean install BS 11.0.1 then to 11.1 on Intel MBA. Starting to lean towards Rosetta 2
 

issi

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Dec 18, 2020
10
5
Asturias, Spain
At this point, there are 3 open possibilities:

- Apps inducing this issue
- A Rosseta 2 related issue
- An Apple Silicon (including T2 chip) issue.
It may be a problem with an application. In my case, macmini 2014, clean install 11.1 (no T2 chip and no need to launch rosseta) the problem is persistent.
 

Populus

macrumors 68000
Aug 24, 2012
1,950
2,180
Valencia, Spain.
It may be a problem with an application. In my case, macmini 2014, clean install 11.1 (no T2 chip and no need to launch rosseta) the problem is persistent.
Oh, your mac isn’t an Apple Silicon or even a T2 mac?!

I have a 2014 Mac mini with the latest Catalina version, and I’ve been checking it for a while, no issues. I’ve opened the Help menu on the menu bar, on several apps, and the helpd process only appears few seconds with no noticeable impact on the CPU (1% CPU).

I’m leaning towards Big Sur being the problem. I think we should report it as a macOS bug. Because, after seeing the normal behavior of helpd on Catalina, the 98% of CPU usage on BigSur isn’t normal. And it never ends.

If anyone else on the forum is experiencing this problem and we see it’s more or less widespread, we could ask MacRumors Staff to consider talking about this on the main webpage during the next weeks.
 
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Javier_gl

macrumors newbie
Nov 17, 2020
26
25
Barcelona, Spain
Maybe it's a problem with a specific App, for now I still can't find a solution, I kill the helpd process, sometimes it takes hours to launch again, and other times it runs again in minutes.

Share a list of installed Apps now, if it helps:
  • Affinity: Designer, Photo, Publisher
  • Blocs
  • DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials
  • Firefox
  • Keynote
  • MonitorControl
  • Numbers
  • Onyx
  • Pages
  • Parcel
  • Reeder
  • RightFont
  • SetApp: CleanMyMac, Forklift, IconJar, Mate Translate
  • Silhouette Studio
  • The Unrarchiver
  • Twitter
  • Vector Magic
  • Visual Studio Code
  • VMWare Fusion
  • WhatsApp
  • Wipr
Hey, I suspect it’s a problem with Visial Studio Code. Reboot your mac and open the process viewer. Open different apps and helpd opens for some of them but quickly closes again. Now open Visual Studio Code and bum!. close Visual Studio Code and kill the helpd process. It will stay closed as you work with your mac but just open again Visual Studio Code and helpd starts eating 100% of your CPU again!

I use VS Code on a daily basis to code in Lua, but I’m giving a try to Panic Nova because of the helpd process killing my MacBook Pro battery and the fan noise of my 2017 27” iMac.
 
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heraldo_jones

macrumors newbie
Aug 28, 2018
11
3
Not only Visual Studio or specific mac related. It also happens to me on my Big Sur 11.1 Hackintosh when I only have open Chrome, Downie and Quicktime playing music.
 
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Populus

macrumors 68000
Aug 24, 2012
1,950
2,180
Valencia, Spain.
Exactly, I’ve never used Visual Studio Code (don’t even know what kind of software is it) and have the issue. This past night I left my mac running for more than 8h just to see if the helpd process finishes doing whatever is doing, and today it’s still running while taking a 98% of CPU usage.

it’s definitely a Big Sur Issue
 

Javier_gl

macrumors newbie
Nov 17, 2020
26
25
Barcelona, Spain
Well, after some time of 100% CPU use, and without any apparent reason, the helpd process stopped. I don't remember now if it's due to a Visual Studio Code update or to a plugin of Visual Studio Code update (they are so common I lost account) but the problem is gone.

So, maybe its a matter of time (or due to a secret Mac service that depends on a remote server connection, all things can now be possible).

For further information: I always wipe all my HD before a full system version upgrade, and I always use the external USB boot method with a USD drive, booting into recovery mode, deleting all HD partitions. Used System version 11.1. So, I don't think it was related to a bad upgrade (also upgrade made to two different Macs, one 2017 iMac 27" and one 2018 15,4" MacBook Pro)
 

Populus

macrumors 68000
Aug 24, 2012
1,950
2,180
Valencia, Spain.
Well, after some time of 100% CPU use, and without any apparent reason, the helpd process stopped. I don't remember now if it's due to a Visual Studio Code update or to a plugin of Visual Studio Code update (they are so common I lost account) but the problem is gone.

So, maybe its a matter of time (or due to a secret Mac service that depends on a remote server connection, all things can now be possible).

For further information: I always wipe all my HD before a full system version upgrade, and I always use the external USB boot method with a USD drive, booting into recovery mode, deleting all HD partitions. Used System version 11.1. So, I don't think it was related to a bad upgrade (also upgrade made to two different Macs, one 2017 iMac 27" and one 2018 15,4" MacBook Pro)
I left the process an entire night and part of the morning running, using caffeine to not let the Mac sleep. More than 14h, and it didn't disappear until I killed the process or put the Mac to sleep/turned it off (I don't remember which one). And of course, if I click on the help menu on any app, it triggers it again and starts taking CPU perpetually. Try it yourself, enter Safari on Big Sur, for instance, click the "help" menu on the menu bar, type anything on the field or click on "Safari Help", and voilà, you'll have the glitchy helpd process triggered.

I tried this on two Macs, one with High Sierra, another one with Catalina: The helpd process runs a fraction of a second, takes just a small CPU %, then disappears. On Big Sur, it stays. That's not normal.

View attachment 1702366
 

Javier_gl

macrumors newbie
Nov 17, 2020
26
25
Barcelona, Spain
I left the process an entire night and part of the morning running, using caffeine to not let the Mac sleep. More than 14h, and it didn't disappear until I killed the process or put the Mac to sleep/turned it off (I don't remember which one). And of course, if I click on the help menu on any app, it triggers it again and starts taking CPU perpetually. Try it yourself, enter Safari on Big Sur, for instance, click the "help" menu on the menu bar, type anything on the field or click on "Safari Help", and voilà, you'll have the glitchy helpd process triggered.

I tried this on two Macs, one with High Sierra, another one with Catalina: The helpd process runs a fraction of a second, takes just a small CPU %, then disappears. On Big Sur, it stays. That's not normal.

View attachment 1702366
Sadly... you are right! I've opened a help windows of Safari and our "friend" helpd started to eat 99,5% of CPU. Definitely it's a Big Sur bug that needs to be reported to Apple.
 

Kraizelburg

macrumors 6502
Nov 10, 2018
430
108
Spain
Same here, as long as you open any help menu triggers the helpd process bug. Also I have noticed when I install any new app no matter if it is intel or apple it triggers the helpd as well.

Apple should solve this bug because is eating resources for no reason in my opinion.
 

Javier_gl

macrumors newbie
Nov 17, 2020
26
25
Barcelona, Spain
Well, in an Apple support forum for Spanish users, it seems to be related to the Spanish language setting (or, maybe, other than English). Are you all using another system language other than English? I can confirm that using English as the main language solves the problem.
 
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issi

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Dec 18, 2020
10
5
Asturias, Spain
Well, in an Apple support forum for Spanish users, it seems to be related to the Spanish language setting (or, maybe, other than English). Are you all using another system language other than English? I can confirm that using English as the main language solves the problem.
Spanish here. I will try to change the main language to English.
 

Javier_gl

macrumors newbie
Nov 17, 2020
26
25
Barcelona, Spain
Spanish here. I will try to change the main language to English.
aha! so it seems related to at least Spanish language! Confirmed that there is no bug if you use English as your main language! (con tanto anglosajón por aquí es difícil saber de dónde es uno, así que supuse que afectaba a cualquier idioma que no fuese el inglés... pero si sólo afecta al español, estamos apañados).

Please report the bug here: https://www.apple.com/feedback/macos.html (and don't forget to mention it's related to at least Spanish language as the main System language)
 
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Kraizelburg

macrumors 6502
Nov 10, 2018
430
108
Spain
aha! so it seems related to at least Spanish language! Confirmed that there is no bug if you use English as your main language! (con tanto anglosajón por aquí es difícil saber de dónde es uno, así que supuse que afectaba a cualquier idioma que no fuese el inglés... pero si sólo afecta al español, estamos apañados).

Please report the bug here: https://www.apple.com/feedback/macos.html (and don't forget to mention it's related to at least Spanish language as the main System language)
Hi, you are right! after changing the main language to english the bug is not triggered. Let's hope apple solves this in the next update as well as M1 restore Big Sur bug
 

anmaso

macrumors newbie
Jan 1, 2021
1
1
Meanwhile I've patched it by having a cron job kill the process every 5min
> crontab -e

*/5 * * * * pkill helpd
 
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Populus

macrumors 68000
Aug 24, 2012
1,950
2,180
Valencia, Spain.
aha! so it seems related to at least Spanish language! Confirmed that there is no bug if you use English as your main language! (con tanto anglosajón por aquí es difícil saber de dónde es uno, así que supuse que afectaba a cualquier idioma que no fuese el inglés... pero si sólo afecta al español, estamos apañados).

Please report the bug here: https://www.apple.com/feedback/macos.html (and don't forget to mention it's related to at least Spanish language as the main System language)
Oh my god, I never suspected it was because of that LOL You're right, we're all Spanish lol (we could set the system in Catalan tho hahaha).

Damn, I came here just to say I just reported the issue to Apple, via Feedback Assistant, but I did before reading this thread (I didn't see the notification for new messages on this thread) so I reported the issue with just a screenshot. Hopefully they will see the system language is Spanish in all the reports, if people upload a screenshot of Activity Monitor.

Anyways, I will write a second note to provide this additional issue.
Has tenido buena vista Javi, bien visto!
 
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joedec

macrumors 6502
Jul 25, 2014
422
33
Cupertino
FYI - I have a macOS 11.2 Beta 1 which I set an account to spanish and helpd seems to behave normally.
 

Populus

macrumors 68000
Aug 24, 2012
1,950
2,180
Valencia, Spain.
FYI - I have a macOS 11.2 Beta 1 which I set an account to spanish and helpd seems to behave normally.
Spain Spanish or LATAM Spanish? AFAIK this issue only happens with Spain Spanish, I've tried with other languages like Latin Spanish or Catalan, and it behaves normally as well. It's just Spain Spanish.
 

joedec

macrumors 6502
Jul 25, 2014
422
33
Cupertino
Ugh, you're right, on macOS 11.2 Beta 1 (20D5029f) it's failing. Captura de pantalla 2021-01-04 a las 9.08.37 a. m..png Captura de pantalla 2021-01-04 a las 9.08.42 a. m..png
 
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