Is My MacbookPro Dying?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by sharkbait006, Jan 1, 2009.

  1. sharkbait006 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2008
    #1
    I've been noticing the performance on my MBP is getting worse and worse. I have the Early 2008 Edition MBP 2.4 GHZ with 4 GB Ram.

    What I've been noticing is when I'm browsing or typing, it will freeze up temporarily and the spinning beachball thing for 2-3 seconds before it starts back up. It's starting to become more frequent. Also, Youtube videos dont play smoothly at all anymore.

    Has anyone had issues like this? Is there something I can do to see what the issue is?


    At first I thought it was a hard drive issue but I've moved a lot of stuff to my ext hd so now there's 100 GB and still the problem persists. I also notice that my laptop runs hotter and battery life is getting worse.
     
  2. kastenbrust macrumors 68030

    kastenbrust

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2008
    Location:
    North Korea
    #2
    If its freezing up frequently it sounds like a RAM problem, if its just a freeze on a certain application but you can still use others then you dont have enough RAM, but if your whole computer locks up for a few seconds, and not even the mouse will respond, then you have a broken stick of RAM, you should use your warranty / applecare to get this seen to, or buy some new ones online

    :)
     
  3. sharkbait006 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2008
    #3
    The computer doesnt freeze. The mouse is moveable but its the spinning wheel thing.

    I dont have enough RAM for just browsing? I think 4 GBs is the maximum for this laptop. I dont do graphics work or anything on it. Just browsing, itunes, email, IM, and watch youtube videos.

    It's like this after a reboot as well.
     
  4. rychencop macrumors 65816

    rychencop

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2007
    Location:
    http://www.northaugusta.net/
    #4
    no one said you do not have enough RAM, but it may be bad. that's what it sounds like to me also. have you tried a restart? that clears out caches and such which can resolve some issues.

    good luck
     
  5. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #5
    I would back up everything and run some hardware tests. If you check Disk Utility, does it mention anything about the SMART status of your HDD?
     
  6. sharkbait006 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2008
    #6
    It says my Smart Status is verified.

    What hardware tests should I run? Should I be worried about a HD failure or Ram failure?

    How do I clear out the cache?
     
  7. J the Ninja macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2008
    #7
    Open up your terminal, and type in this:

    ls -l /var/log/*.out

    and hit enter. Some lines will come up.

    -In the line that says "Daily.out", is the time stamp show today's date?
    -In the line that says "Weekly.out", is the time stamp a date in the last week?
    -In the line that says "Monthly.out", is the time stamp a date in the last month?


    If that answer to any of those questions is no, type in this:

    sudo periodic daily monthly weekly

    Hit enter. You will be prompted for your admin password. Type it, and hit enter again (you will not see any asterisks or any other symbols for your password, but it is accepting the characters)

    Also, type the letter "w" and hit enter, and copy and paste into a post what comes up.
     
  8. sharkbait006 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2008
    #8
    20:06 up 4 days, 33 mins, 2 users, load averages: 2.61 2.44 2.34
    USER TTY FROM LOGIN@ IDLE WHAT
    jameschen console - Sun19 4days -
    jameschen s000 - 20:04 - w


    I don't know what this means??
     
  9. J the Ninja macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2008
    #9
    Were you encoding something when you did that? If you weren't, go to Activity Monitor and rank your processes by CPU. I think you may find the culprit.

    Anyway, what you are seeing there, piece:

    20:06 - This is the current time of day

    up 4 days, 33 mins - This is your uptime, or how long it has been since you last started the machine.

    load averages: 2.61 2.44 2.34 - These show the amount of work your CPU was doing on average in the last minute, 5 minutes, and 15 minutes, respectively. 1.00 is one core's worth of work. So a load average of .5, .67 1.0 would mean in the last minute, you used an average of half of one cores available clock cycles, 2/3rds of them on average during the last 5 mins, and all of them on average during the last 15 minutes. Anything above 1.00 means somebody had to wait their turn for the CPU. Of course, you have a dual core, so you can get up to 2.00 before stuff needs to wait in line. You may notice, however, your average for the last minute is 2.61. The last 5 minutes is 2.44, and the last 15 mins is 2.34. Meaning your system has had the hammer down continuously for at least the last 15 minutes. Unless you were busy, I think you have a process you don't know about sucking down your machine.
     
  10. dissdnt macrumors 65816

    dissdnt

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2007
    #10
    Honestly mine is getting the same way but this is normal for computers.

    You use it and install more crap into the OS and it gets sluggish etc.

    I'm probably gonna do a full wipe soon and reinstall OSX or maybe do it when Snow Leopard comes out.

    A fresh OS install is always heaven.
     
  11. J the Ninja macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2008
    #11
    No, that's just Windows that does that. Despite what some Win-nerds or MS advertising may want you to think, none of the following are considered normal or acceptable behaviors for a modern operating system:

    -Fragmentation to the point of needing weekly or monthly cleanup
    -Easy infection from viruses/spyware/etc
    -"Rotting" or needing to be reinstalled every year or two (or more)
    -Needing to be restarted every so often

    There are servers that run continuously 24/7 for months at a time, simply because their owners cannot afford to have them down. They do not need regular restarts or reinstalls. It just doesn't happen.
     
  12. sharkbait006 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2008
    #12
    Sorry I had a movie playing in the background when I did this.

    I redid it:

    21:03 up 4 days, 1:31, 2 users, load averages: 2.26 2.32 2.30
    USER TTY FROM LOGIN@ IDLE WHAT
    jameschen console - Sun19 4days -
    jameschen s000 - 21:02 - w

    Actually, I'll wait 20 minutes to redo this as the movie just finished.
     
  13. mAc-warrior macrumors member

    mAc-warrior

    Joined:
    May 11, 2004
    #13
    Shocked nobody has recommended repairing permissions yet.

    Applications --> Utilities --> Disk Utility

    Click the First Aid tab and highlight your drive on the left. Then click Repair Permissions. Do it a couple times and see if anything improves at all. I have a feeling there will be a few repairs made.

    --mAc
     
  14. sharkbait006 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2008
    #14
    One thing... I just looked at Activity Monitor like you said, and

    ATSServer is taking up ~190 of CPU. Not sure what this is or what it's doing but it's only taking up 934 kb Real Memory but 624.85 MB virtual

    The next highest is Firefox at ~5-10 CPU

    Is this the culprit? I dont even know what ATSServer is...

    Here's a screenshot of what's going on...

    http://img161.imageshack.us/img161/2867/activitymonitorwe0.jpg

    Does anyone know what that server thing is doing?
     
  15. mAc-warrior macrumors member

    mAc-warrior

    Joined:
    May 11, 2004
    #15
    I had heard of this issue previously but don't know a fix off-hand. A little googling found this:

    http://macosx.com/forums/mac-os-x-system-mac-software/268123-atsserver.html

    Maybe give it a shot? I know that ATS server deals with Fonts and indexing of files for Spotlight. Sorry, somebody else should know more.

    --mAc
     
  16. J the Ninja macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2008
    #16
    Yes, that would be our culprit. Lots of CPU usage means other stuff is getting bumped out of the way and has to wait. Busy CPU means lots of power, hence the poor battery life, and a lot of that power turned to heat, hence the warm temps. A little Googling for "ATSServer" should help you.
     
  17. sharkbait006 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2008
    #17
    Well I'm happy to report after killing that process, things are back to normal. Still not sure why that process was going crazy but now I know it wasn't my hardware failing.

    Thanks for everyone's help! This is truly a great community we've got going here at Macrumor. Happy New Years!
     
  18. dissdnt macrumors 65816

    dissdnt

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2007
    #18
    Sorry but a server and a personal computer are totally different.

    Normal computing people are constantly installing/uninstalling software. Start up programs are put in, removed not completely. Programs run in resident memory that you might have thought you removed. etc.

    Of course some of this applies only to Windows, like registry entries etc.

    OSX isn't a flawless OS. Like ANY other you will see degradation in performance over time.

    No one can deny that a fresh OS install isn't considerably more "zippy"
     
  19. alexbates macrumors 65816

    alexbates

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2008
    Location:
    Georgia, USA
    #19
    I am thinking about doing this soon. Is it helpful in any way to restore from a Time Machine backup? Or does that just put all of the same startup programs and stuff back on my Mac that aren't being used?
     
  20. dissdnt macrumors 65816

    dissdnt

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2007
    #20
    Programs, I wouldn't. I'd just install stuff fresh and restore your own personal files.

    Again this is just an idea. I've done it a million times on my pc, never tried on a mac.
     
  21. SnowLeopard2008 macrumors 604

    SnowLeopard2008

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2008
    Location:
    Silicon Valley
    #21
    PC suck and Mac owns. :D Honestly, OS X isn't flawless, but it is better overall than Windows XP/Vista.
     
  22. J the Ninja macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2008
    #22
    Yes, they ARE removed. Either the .app bundle is there or it isn't. Either it's in the startup list, or it isn't. Operating System's don't rot. "I've done it a million times on my pc, never tried on a mac. " -Why doesn't this surprise me? It REALLY isn't necessary. Go look through your process list. Go see if anything is slowing it down.
     
  23. hhlee macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 19, 2005
  24. bplein macrumors 6502

    bplein

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2007
    Location:
    Austin, TX USA
    #24
    I hate to say "did you try google" because it's a lame reply, but I did it for you and found one of the top posts seems to address this

    http://blog.thebleacher.com/2008/01/02/the-runaway-atsserver-process/

    Points to either a lot of new PDFs downloaded or a corrupt Spotlight index. In either case, the answer is to re-index or move the downloads to an area that is off limits to Spotlight. I'd try the first solution (re-index)
     
  25. Ploki macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2008
    #25
    how can you clear out plists and other crap some leave?
     

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