Late 2011 MPB running extremely slow

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by dylancaspar, Nov 21, 2014.

  1. dylancaspar macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2014
    #1
    Hi,

    I know that is a really vague title, but basically for a few days I've been plagued by spinning wheel of death when trying to accomplish any task.

    For instance: from a fresh restart, with no programs open, I'm seeing the wheel spin for about 4 minutes when trying to open a folder.

    If I open the activity monitor CPU shows about 95% idle.
    Memory shows:
    Physical Memory - 4,00 GB
    Memory Used - 3,68 GB
    Virtual Memory - 4,00 GB
    Swap Used - 0 bytes

    kernal_task is the top task, using 506,9 MB

    Basically I'm at a loss as to what is causing this. I'm wondering if anyone has any tips on how to start troubleshooting this, or if I should just try a fresh OS install?

    Any help is much appreciated,
    Cheers.
     
  2. dylancaspar thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2014
    #2
    A little update...

    I ran the Apple Hardware Test with no trouble found.
     
  3. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2013
    #3
    Then it's probably a software issue

    Try doing a repair permissions on your HDD.

    Then it'll be about unistalling apps from the newest downloaded back until it shows a better performance then you'll know which App it is.

    Of course you could do a clean install of OSX after a backup and then load stuff back on until the problem occurs, same result and a lovely clean install as well.
     
  4. dylancaspar thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2014
    #4
    Thanks for the ideas!

    Repair permissions didn't seem to help.
    Deleted a few of the most recently installed apps with no major change too..

    As far as I remember nothing was installed directly before the problem occurred.
    I seem to remember Google Chrome being the first thing to run really slow (I had a load of tabs open) when the whole issue started. I uninstalled that & Google Drive too for good measure. Also no change.
     
  5. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #5
    That sounds like a drive dying.
     
  6. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2013
    #6
    I think you could be right weaselboy.

    OP back up everything you need while you can and replace the HDD. As is traditional here I will reccomend you move to an SSD for a far superior performance on your Mac.
     
  7. MagicBoy macrumors 68040

    MagicBoy

    Joined:
    May 28, 2006
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    #7
    Agreed.

    Outside chance it's the hard drive cable. I've seen a few with that fault.
     
  8. dylancaspar thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2014
    #9
    Thanks for the info guys!
    Good reason to upgrade to an SSD then ;)

    Any way to verify this? Would be a shame to go out and get a shiny new drive and then figure out that wasn't the issue.
     
  9. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #10
    You can use Disk Util to do a verify disk or try one of the SMART utilities to test. But unfortunately, often times these tests will not show errors and the drive can be bad.

    Like MagicBoy mentioned, it could also be a bad drive cable, but that is less common.

    The only real definitive test would be to clone your drive to an external USB drive and boot to that to see if the issue goes away while on the external.

    But the symptoms you have are classic bad drive.

    If it was me, I would get a new drive and cable both. The cable is only around $10 US.

    Do you have an external you can clone to to test?
     
  10. dylancaspar thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2014
    #11
    Yes. Tried to clone to an external drive today.
    Booted into recovery mode & launched Disk Util.
    Unfortunately after about 3hrs of copying I got an input / output error.

    I read online that Disk Util will abort the cloning process even if it comes across a single file it's unable to copy.
    Carbon Copy Cloner will apparently skip these files. Allowing you to continue with the cloning process.

    Unfortunately to use CCC I need to boot fully into OSX and this is where things become unbearably slow.

    Can anyone think of a work around? Or should I just bite the bullet & buy the new drive and see what happens?
     
  11. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #12
    Do you have an external USB enclosure that you could move your internal drive into and boot to that and see how it works then? That would help diagnose if you have a bad internal drive cable.

    If it was me, for the ten bucks or so for a cable, I would just buy a new drive and cable both and be done with it.

    The more you describe your symptoms though, it really does sound like the drive is dying.
     
  12. dylancaspar thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2014
    #13
    No enclosure unfortunately. I think I will just order the new drive & cable.
    Thanks again for the help =)
     
  13. cjmillsnun macrumors 68020

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    Aug 28, 2009
    #14
  14. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2010
    #15
    Permissions won't really do anything. It resets inappropriate levels of access to a given file that may have been needed for some installation of whatever software. Doing that won't make your machine perform faster or slower. It may clear up some subtle glitches but nothing like what the OP describes

    I doubt anyone can tell you for sure. It's definitely hardware of some kind. That can be a sign of impending doom on the 15 and 17" 2011 models, but there's no guarantee.
     
  15. dylancaspar thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2014
    #16
    Interesting. Mine is a 13" model. Hopefully it's just the drive.
     
  16. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2010
    #17
    The 13" definitely doesn't have the problem. The problem was the soldering of the AMD gpu. That connection doesn't exist on the 13", because it only uses integrated graphics. It's definitely something else.
     

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