Horrible Virus? Mac running on 10% of Potential Power

Discussion in 'macOS' started by adamvk, Oct 13, 2009.

  1. adamvk macrumors 65816

    adamvk

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2008
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    #1
    Well ever since Snow Leopard I've noticed a dramatic decrease in speed and stability. Well the last 2 days I've been keeping the activity monitor open and noticing that a little process called "MDS" takes on average 90% of my CPU and Ram.

    Whats the problem here?

    Help would strongly be appreciated.

    Thanks.
     
  2. celticpride678

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #2
    I believe that process is the Spotlight indexer. This is normal as Spotlight re-indexes and indexes newly connected drives.
     
  3. adamvk thread starter macrumors 65816

    adamvk

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2008
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    #3
    I googled MDS and found this same response, however I have no glowing grey dot in my spot light.

    If that is the case, how on earth do I fix it?

    Also you said this is normal, but this has been going on for several weeks since I installed SL.
     
  4. celticpride678

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #4
    Are you mounting and then un-mounting drives?
     
  5. adamvk thread starter macrumors 65816

    adamvk

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    #5
    I have an external HDD that runs 24/7 and is plugged in 24/7. Other than that just occasional flash drives, and my cameras' memory cards.

    edit: MDS just pushed CPU % over 100. MDS is now taking 130% of my CPU....Wow.
     

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  6. celticpride678

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #6
    Every single time that a media storage device is plugged into the computer, Spotlight will index it. It seems like that it the issue. That is all I can think of. If nothing else can be done, I recommend doing a clean install.
     
  7. adamvk thread starter macrumors 65816

    adamvk

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    #7
    Is there a way to turn off indexing, or would that be a bad idea?
     
  8. Anonymous Freak macrumors 601

    Anonymous Freak

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Cascadia
    #8
    Open up Activity Monitor again, click on MDS, then click "Quit Process". Then click "Force Quit" and type in your password, and see what happens.

    MDS should come back automatically when you reboot.
     
  9. AllieNeko macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2003
    #9
    The 130% of your CPU means it's using 130% of the processing power of ONE core. Or basically it's using a full core and 1/3 of the other core, or a little under 70% of your real processing power.

    Which is nuts...
     
  10. adamvk thread starter macrumors 65816

    adamvk

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    #10
    That doesn't sound like a good idea. :)

    Anyways if I were to put my External HDD in the privacy tab for Spotlight so it doesn't index it, would Time Machine still function fine?
     
  11. adamvk thread starter macrumors 65816

    adamvk

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    Oct 29, 2008
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    #11
    Update: I unplugged my External HDD, and nothing changed. So back to the starting point.

    What else could I do? I am keeping the possibility of a fresh install open however that would be a huge hassle for me.
     
  12. mrchinchilla macrumors 6502

    mrchinchilla

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2009
    #12
    I had a similar problem but with Leopard. I took to just completely disabling Spotlight altogether, which you may want to consider unless Spotlight is absolutely necessary. A good alternative is EasyFind: Download link.
    But luckily Snow Leopard seems to have fixed this, for me.
     
  13. hobbbz macrumors 6502a

    hobbbz

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2005
    #13
    This is the solution ^^ If you don't want to do it then quit asking for help.
     
  14. Meltdown macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2009
    #14
    If you don't absolutely need to be able to quickly search those drives using spotlight, you could always, after plugging them in, tell spotlight not to index them under the "privacy" tab in System Prefs
     
  15. MythicFrost macrumors 68040

    MythicFrost

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2009
    Location:
    Australia
    #15
    Try - System Preferences - Spotlight - Privacy Tab - Add the external hard drive, and any other media drives.
    Then restart and see how you go.

    I'd say also to try a new user account (NOT GUEST), but with the problems with the guest account possibly reseting your main accounts data, I wouldn't try it even on a normal account, unless you know it's safe.

    Kind Regards
     
  16. MadGoat macrumors 65816

    MadGoat

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2007
    Location:
    Canada
    #16
    I had MDS bugger up on me and here's my solution which basicaly will force spotlight to start from scratch and re-index (you may have a corrupted spotlight index)

    open up terminal
    at type the following to stop mds
    sudo service com.apple.metadata.mds stop

    then go to the root of your disk ( cd / ) and type the following to delete the index
    sudo rm -fr .Spotlight* there's a period before the filename
    if it spits an error do
    ls -al | grep -i spot
    you should see something like .Spotlight-V100 (or similar)
    remove it by typing
    sudo rm -fr the filename including the leading period


    now restart the spotlight indexer
    sudo service com.apple.metadata.mds start

    for the next little bit mds will chug and take up processes like crazy while it indexes and then it should go right back to normal.
     
  17. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #17
    You really should change your misleading thread title, since a "horrible virus" has absolutely nothing to do with your problem. No viruses exist that run on Mac OS X, and unless you've been careless about installing pirated software, you don't have a trojan, either.
     
  18. adamvk thread starter macrumors 65816

    adamvk

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2008
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    #18
    I'll try that, thanks for link.

    Woah there. I was only stating that it seemed like a dumb option, and no one else agreed with it. Settle down.

    Ya...I thought it was a virus since I thought it was ridiculous that something had been taking up so much power. In my mind, an application that was taking a large amount of power that I've never heard of (mds) + overall system instability + overall speed decrease = a virus. It made sense to me. :)

    Also thanks for the other posts. I read them all and will try what you advise if the first solution doesn't work.
     
  19. sammich macrumors 601

    sammich

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2006
    Location:
    Sarcasmville.
    #19
    Have you checked console (Apps>Utils) for any messages? Also, if you aren't doing anything on the computer, is MDS actually hitting your hard drive for any read/writes?

    If MDS is still a runaway process without any external drives (which shouldn't matter, they only get indexed the first time), and if you haven't already done this, add all your drives to the privacy list (this destroys the spotlight index on those drives), then remove them. Spotlight will reindex and hopefully...just hopefully the problem will go away.
     
  20. RobertD63 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2008
    Location:
    A place
    #20
    I had this very same problem and it pissed me off everyday cause I couldn't find a fix. And Im pissed now because I cant remember how I fixed the problem!! I know it evolved making a hidden file on the desktop and moving the file path for ASL to go to. Ill keep digging for you because I understand how aggravating this issue really is.

    BTW guys, this issue isnt directly related to new drives be plugged in etc. I never had anything plugged in and my MDS was going crazy.

    EDIT: Try running the below code. What it does is instead of doing what I did and move the folder it deletes it and rebuilds it..
     
  21. adamvk thread starter macrumors 65816

    adamvk

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2008
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    #21
    I've tried closing all applications, and the CPU usage is still incredibly high. I checked console and saw no errors other than a few iTunes errors.

    Thanks for your help. Before I run that code, what exactly does it do?

    edit: Update: I rebooted, it was still the same, then I opened iTunes, and decided I didn't want to listen to music. When I exited iTunes, the MDS CPU usage dropped to 0%. I opened up iTunes again thinking iTunes was the problem, and MDS was still 0%. So I seem to have involuntarily fixed it. Well see what happens though.
     
  22. RobertD63 macrumors 6502

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    Feb 17, 2008
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    A place
  23. Dan73 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2009
    #23

    I would try this first, then restart. If that doesn't work try:

    Go to system settings and spotlight (Wherever that is exactly, on my windows computer right now) and add the hard drive you're using (whever OS X is installed) to the privacy tab, then remove it. This will force spotlight to rebuild itself and you should see the spotlight with the dot in it in your bar at the top.

    Both these are simple "no damage" processes, where as the other terminal idea can screw something up. So I would start with these.
     

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