Late 2011 Macbook Pro Starting To Run Slow

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by makris0000, Feb 24, 2014.

  1. makris0000 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2011
    Location:
    Clearwater Beach
    #1
    I have had my late 2011 Macbook Pro for almost two years and lately it has been acting weird. :confused:

    It takes a while to open Microsoft Word, PowerPoint and Excel. I have Microsoft Office 2011.

    My computer takes a while to connect to the internet wherever I am and when I try to load almost any page, sometimes it will be loading and then freeze while trying to load the page, making me have to reload the page. Takes a few refreshes to load the pages sometimes. :mad:

    My computer freezes quite often. Ill have Mail, iTunes, Safari, Word and Excel open and when I try to open another app, it will freeze and take a while. (My old white macbook was able to have multiple applications open at the same time).

    I open applications and most of the time they will not be responding and I will have to close everything to open one application. :mad:

    Is there anything out there that can help me get this computer to run smoother or any advice that I can do to make my computer run faster? I really don't feel like buying another Macbook Pro just yet because this one is not even 2 years old yet. Any actual help will be appreciated.

    Computer Specs:
    2.4 GHz Intel i5 processor
    4GB 1333 MHz DDR3 Ram
    500 GB Hard Drive (90 GB used)
    Intel HD Graphics 3000 384 MB
     
  2. TechZeke macrumors 68020

    TechZeke

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    Rialto, CA
    #2
    This is easy. Upgrade to at least 8gb of RAM and an SSD. /Thread
     
  3. makris0000 thread starter macrumors member

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    #3
    I was hoping that I didn't have to change any hardware because my mac isn't old.
     
  4. Sital macrumors 68000

    Sital

    Joined:
    May 31, 2012
    Location:
    New England
    #4
    You could try reinstalling OS X and starting fresh. Use your backup to get your data back, but don't re-install the 3rd party apps from your backup. Instead, do fresh installs. This is a good opportunity to do some spring cleaning and only re-install programs that you really need.

    If that doesn't work, you might want to take it into Apple and see if something else is going on.

    P.S. I also have a Late 2011 MBP and I have to say the 8GB RAM and SSD make a huge difference.
     
  5. TechZeke macrumors 68020

    TechZeke

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    #5
    My 2012 cMBP isn't old and and it came with 4gb of ram and a 500 HDD. Still doesn't change the fact that 4GB isn't enough anymore. Upgrading from 4 to 16 was like day and night. And I don't get me started about the SSD. If you are currently only using 90GB of your current HDD, You could get away with a less expensive 256 or 128gb ssd for around $100-$160 and call it day.

    Believe me, your processor and iGPU isn't what is bottlenecking your computer.
     
  6. yjchua95 macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2011
    Location:
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    #6
    The hardware itself is already inadequate. 4GB of RAM is plain too little and a HDD is so last century.

    http://1drv.ms/1mgZece

    This link contains videos of my 15" 2011 MBP with a 512GB Samsung 840 Pro SSD booting up in seconds and entering an instantly useable state after login.

    Get an SSD, like everyone else is saying.
     
  7. BasicGreatGuy Contributor

    BasicGreatGuy

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2012
    Location:
    In the middle of several books.
    #7
    I have the same computer. After purchase, I upgraded to 8gb of ram. I did have to have the logic board replaced recently. It is running as smooth as it did day one.

    Before you go spending all kinds of money, back up important files and wipe the drive clean and do a fresh install, and see if you can tell a positive difference. If you don't, check your page out situation while using your computer as you normally would. This will give you a good idea if you are hitting the memory wall with your stock setup.

    Are all the programs you have been using from the App store or from disc?

    Many people on here love their ssd. Nothing wrong with that. But, telling someone to buy one isn't always the best advice.
     
  8. makris0000 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2011
    Location:
    Clearwater Beach
    #8
    Thanks for all of your input. This is going to be a really stupid question but bear with me. How do I back up my files and things? I have an external hard drive but is there a way to back everything up on the computer itself and how do I reinstall OS X?
     
  9. TechZeke, Feb 24, 2014
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2014

    TechZeke macrumors 68020

    TechZeke

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    #9
    I actually agree, HOWEVER, a 5400rpm HDD is by definition, slow. If there is no underlying issue, and someone complains about the speed of their computer on relatively new machine, then lack of RAM and HDD is usually the culprit. This is especially the case on Macbooks, as Apple tries to give as minimum RAM and the cheapest storage as possible on the base models.

    Also, unless you are a lucky kid who's parent's gave them a $1000+ computer,(the average price for a PC laptop is like $500) if you bought a macbook, you should be able to afford at least a small SSD. The OP even noted that he/she is only using 90GB.(Which is the main reason why suggested an SSD. The OP could get by with a $100 128gb SSD)

    ----------

    Time Machine, easy to use built-in app.

    As for migration, I usually just use a program called Carbon Copy Cloner.

    There are numerous videos online on youtube about migrating to a new HD.
     
  10. Silverrune, Feb 24, 2014
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2014

    Silverrune macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2011
    #10
    Before doing any upgrades, which I highly recommend doing, try something like Onyx. You can download it online and it runs all scripts and cleans some secret areas. When my computer starts to run a tad slow, I run this and it clears things right up.
    I'd also try a fresh install of OS X.
     
  11. makris0000 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2011
    Location:
    Clearwater Beach
    #11
    So far Onyx has made my mac noticeably better. Ill try a fresh install of the OS when I get a chance to back up my stuff. Do I really need to back up my stuff? I remember when I bought the new OS I didn't have to back anything up.
     
  12. OldMacUser macrumors member

    OldMacUser

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    Jan 10, 2011
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #12
    Specifically for the Microsoft applications, I have found that font corruptions, duplicates etc cause various slowdowns.

    To check and fix font issues, go to Applications >> Font Book, then do the following :

    1. Select from menu : Edit > Select All
    2. Select from menu : File > Validate Fonts

    Wait for the process to finish and report back any issues it has found.

    On the Font Validation window that pops up to show progress and the final results, you can select the type of issues found and then manually go about fixing by Removing the offending items within the Font Validation window itself.
     
  13. makris0000 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2011
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    Clearwater Beach
    #13
    It found 34 minor problems so I removed them.

    When I try to empty the trash can (because thats where it moved them) it wouldn't delete them because it says that they were in use and couldn't remove them.
     
  14. MarcusCarpenter macrumors 6502a

    MarcusCarpenter

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    #14
    can you link me your wallpaper please:)
     
  15. Silverrune macrumors regular

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    Oct 2, 2011
    #15
    It depends on how far you want to go with a clean install. It's always a recommended idea incase something goes wrong. But there are varying levels of fresh install
    1. Deepest: Wipe the hard drive of any data and install a new copy of OS X using the recovery partition. Will be like factory.
    2. Semi: Just reinstall OS X using the recovery partition. This will overwrite all OS files so that they are clean and don't have anything bloating them down.

    I'd try the semi install first. Only go with the deep install if things are still pretty bad. I have done both types of reinstall. The deep is a real pain. You have to reinstall all of the applications you want to use (You can't get them from the backup because it will most likely cause your computer to slowdown again).

    ----------

    That is most likely because the application is still open, you'd have to quit the application because it still has the font files loaded. If you restart and don't open anything up you will be able to delete them.
     
  16. BigBeast macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2009
    #16
    I almost never suggest reinstalling the operating system (OS)-- it usually isn't necessary. From the sound of things, you may be maxxing out your RAM; the more programs you open, the less RAM you'll have to work with. It's possible you don't know what RAM is, so let me explain it to you. RAM is super fast memory that is used by the OS to run programs. When you open a program, the program is executed, and runs in RAM. The more programs you open, then less RAM you'll have. Once you've exhausted all of your RAM, the OS starts using your hard drive (HDD) as virtual memory, and since the HDD is so much slower than RAM, you end up getting a very slow computer. With that said, let's figure out how much RAM you're using.

    To find out how much RAM is being utilized at any given time, go to your Applications folder, then choose "Utilities," and then double click on the "Activity Monitor" (AM) program. Within the AM window, select the "Memory" tab, and look at the information at the lower part of the window. Notice the descriptors such as "Physical Memory," "Memory Used," etc. the "Memory Used" category is what's most important in your situation. If the amount of memory used is close to your total amount of memory, then you'll either need to close some currently open programs, or upgrade your Mac to contain more memory. Recall: more memory = more programs open at any given time = faster computer. However, if the amount of memory used is ~500MB – 1GB or less than the your total amount of memory, then it's possible that your HDD is what's slowing your computer down.

    HDDs perform their functions much slower than solid state drives (SSDs), and traditionally, MS Office programs are quite large and take a decent amount of time to load. On SSDs they open nearly instantly; on HDDs it can take 15 - 20X as long.

    My recommendation– follow my instructions on determining your RAM usage, especially when you notice that your computer is slowing down. If RAM is your problem, increase your RAM to 8GB. Next, research getting an SSD to replace your HDD, and determine if it's something you'd like. IMO, SSDs are they only way to go- they're faster and more reliable than HDDS, which is important to me. You may not share the same opinion, so take some time to look into the pros and cons.

    Hope this helps.

    BB
     
  17. makris0000, Feb 26, 2014
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2014

    makris0000 thread starter macrumors member

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    Clearwater Beach
    #17
    I know what ram is......

    Also I have had the activity monitor open and I have been constantly checking it. It says that I am using 3.5 GB ram and virtual memory is 4.5 and my physical is 4 GB. Also, I noticed that there is something using about 400 MB of ram its called kernel_task I can't force quit it or anything and I'm not sure if its supposed to be there. I tried attaching a picture in here too. Hopefully it worked.
     

    Attached Files:

  18. OldMacUser macrumors member

    OldMacUser

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    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #18
    Are you able to delete the offending files after a reboot?
     
  19. BigBeast macrumors 6502a

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    Mar 6, 2009
    #19
    Well you'd be surprised how many people don't know what RAM is. Frankly, I'm surprised that you know what RAM is, yet you do not know how to deduce what the problem is. Anyway, get a couple 4GB RAM sticks for a total of 8GB and you should be fine. Also, kernel_task is the OSX program that loads and maintains the kernel during your login session. You need it to run if you want to use your computer, that's why you can't force quit it.
     
  20. makris0000 thread starter macrumors member

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    Jul 20, 2011
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    Clearwater Beach
    #20
    Yes I finally got it delete.

    I know the hardware fairly well but I do no know software as much. Also where can I get the "correct" Ram for my computer? I know apple computers have to have certified ram or some **** like that (Er, I mean thing).
     
  21. BigBeast macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2009
    #21
    You don't have to have Apple cert'd RAM from your MBP; you just need the correct size dimms and clock speed. Your MBP uses 204-pin SO-DIMM at 1333 MHz (aka PC-10600). I pick whatever's got decent reviews and low cost. Brands that I've personally used are Mushkin, OWC, Kingston and Corsair, and would recommend any one of them. Also, if the memory doesn't have a lifetime warranty, it's a no buy for me.

    When purchasing, I use either newegg.com, macsales.com, or amazon.com. Any one of the links I've provided will take you to the RAM product page that corresponds to the type of RAM that your specific computer uses, with the exception of amazon.com, which may include RAM that is "similar" to the searched for results, so pay attention to the products listed there.
     
  22. makris0000 thread starter macrumors member

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    Jul 20, 2011
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    Clearwater Beach
    #22
    Thanks! I just bought my ram and when it comes ill install it.
     
  23. heisenberg123 macrumors 603

    heisenberg123

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    Oct 31, 2010
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    Hamilton, Ontario
    #23
    upgrading to SSD will be more beneficial


    I had 16GB of RAM and a 1TB HDD in my early 2011 and it was getting very slow, put in a 250 SSD and moved the 1TB to the optical bay and my MBP is blazing fast and fun to use again
     
  24. BasicGreatGuy Contributor

    BasicGreatGuy

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    #24
    Make sure to get a Philips 00 screw driver, as you will need it to remove the bottom cover screws.
     
  25. BigBeast macrumors 6502a

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    #25
    I disagree. Upgrading to an SSD prior to installing the proper amount of RAM would reduce the life of the SSD, and still be quite slow. First, with inadequate RAM, the SSD will be utilized as virtual memory, offsetting the lack of physical RAM. By doing this, the computer will write tasks that are normally written to RAM, to the SSD. Because SSDs have only a finite amount of writes available to each transistor, you'll effectively shorten its lifetime, and increase the risk of data loss. Additionally, even fast SSDs pale in comparison to the speed of RAM – ~500MB/s in SSDs vs. ~23 GB/s in RAM (@1333 MHz). Therefore, the best solution would be to install the appropriate amount of RAM first, followed by an SSD upgrade. Once the proper amount of RAM is installed, an SSD will truly shine.
     

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