MacBook eating memory.

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Kehhnough, May 21, 2014.

  1. Kehhnough, May 21, 2014
    Last edited: May 21, 2014

    Kehhnough macrumors newbie

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    May 21, 2014
    #1
    So recently my MacBook has been eating my memory.
    I'd use it for work, just Microsoft word and PowerPoint, simple applications.
    And then I'd notice that my memory has been eaten.
    On finder it shows how much memory is left
    This one day, when I first switch on my mac, it'd show maybe 6.51GB.
    But after using it for a few hours, it'd drop to 6.41.
    I understand that sometimes they need storage memory and all that but it definitely doesn't take 100MB, especially since all I'm doing are slides and typing documents. Sometimes I'll just be surfing the web and it happens too.

    When I restart my mac, it used to restore the memory back.
    But now it just remains the same again, and doesn't restore back the eaten memory.
    I am worried this would keep happening until I eventually run out of space and it just dies.
    I've used applications like CleanMyMac and it doesn't really help. Like it'd clear from 6.41-6.44.
    Help!! Why does this happen? Is this normal? Can I fix it?
     
  2. dmccloud macrumors 6502a

    dmccloud

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    #2
    What OS are you running? If running Mavericks, you need to look at the memory pressure graph in Activity Monitor instead of the total amount of RAM used. Mavericks will use as much RAM as possible, but through memory compression and other tricks it doesn't slow down the machine. As long as the memory pressure graph is green, you're fine.
     

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  3. Kehhnough thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #3
    Hi I use OSX 10.5.8. (I hope that's what you're asking for because idrk what you're asking for)
    But yeah my computer isn't running slow, everything is as per normal just the memory.
    And how do I check that?
    Sorry I'm a tech noob!
     
  4. dmccloud macrumors 6502a

    dmccloud

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    #4
    Word and Powerpoint could easily use 100MB of RAM after launch, so could your browser/email client. Here's my apps and memory usage at the present time:
     

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  5. leman macrumors 604

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    #5
    Are you experiencing slowdowns, lag or other performance problems? If not, stop looking at irrelevant statistics and relax ;)
     
  6. thundersteele macrumors 68030

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    #6
    Is it 10.8.5 or 10.5.8? That is a big difference...

    Also, are we talking about storage space (i.e. HDD memory) or RAM?
     
  7. Kehhnough thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #7
    10.5.8. I haven't updated my computer in years.

    HDD memory space. Not RAM.

    Nope no lags or slowing down. Everything is as per normal. Except the memory.

    I'm just worried because it keeps wavering and wanted to know why.
     
  8. Kehhnough thread starter macrumors newbie

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    May 21, 2014
    #8
    Update: now the memory just doesn't come back anymore even when I reboot. My MacBook is literally eating my memory and I have no idea why! Help!

    Hard disk space, not RAM!
     
  9. simonsi macrumors 601

    simonsi

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    Auckland
    #10
    Use the right words. RAM = memory, HDD space is "storage" and specifically NOT called memory - that would be confusing ;)

    So do you have Time Machine turned on? If so it is likely taking the space for local backups, you can turn these off but Time Machine and the OS will discard them anyway if it needs the space.

    To clear them, turn TM off, wait 5mins then turn it back on and see if your free disk space has risen.
     
  10. thundersteele macrumors 68030

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    #11
    Unfortunately I don't remember much about OSX 10.5. I wouldn't know where to start looking. You can try with this tool, suggested above:
    Alternatively you could just buy a bigger HDD (like, 500 GB or so).
     
  11. Kehhnough thread starter macrumors newbie

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    May 21, 2014
    #12
    Haha yeah I could always buy a bigger HDD but I just wanted to see what's wrong, it hasn't really yet gotten to the point where I really need to so I am delaying it as much as I can.

    And I do not have time machine turned on, I haven't since I first got it. So I can't do the thing where I go back in time either :/
     
  12. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #13
    From our description in the first post, it does not sound like anything is wrong at all. It is normal for OS X to use up some disk space for cache files and swap space during normal operation and that space used will go up slightly as you use the machine, then get freed when you reboot. Are you seeing some really large amount of space used that is concerning you?
     
  13. Kehhnough thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #14
    Yeah, I mean I get it if a little bit of space is used, but the space that is being used downs by a few hundred mb. Also, it doesn't return when I reboot.
     
  14. simonsi macrumors 601

    simonsi

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  15. Kehhnough thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #16
    I've had time machine turned off and have never turned it on ever since I first got my Mac! So I doubt that's the issue!
     
  16. Trvlngnrs macrumors 6502

    Trvlngnrs

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    #17
    Have you used the free app to see what is taking up the space yet? Let us know what you find out.
     
  17. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #18
    Are you only talking about 100-200MB or so? There is a swap file that OS X uses and also a lot of system and app cache files. Those can together easily add up to 200MB or so. Unless you are seeing multiple GB fluctuations, I really don't anything abnormal is going on with your system.
     
  18. simonsi macrumors 601

    simonsi

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    #19
    Sorry, missed that you had answered that.

    Failing that you will need to investigate using an app (I use WhatSize), to find out what is using the minimal amount of extra space - but I expect at that size you will get lost in a myriad of small OS file changes, there won't be any smoking gun in terms of chewing space.

    Mine typically (with TM local backups turned off), varies by about 2GB from boot to boot, normally downloads and document/media file differences account for it, plus some OS-type variables.
     
  19. Kehhnough thread starter macrumors newbie

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    May 21, 2014
    #20
    I read somewhere that you have to try to have 10-15% free space in your Mac? So I will try to clear some stuff soon to see if it helps. My Mac is quite full with shows haha so I'll transfer some to my external hard disk and see if there's a difference.

    And swap files, the thing bout that is that it returns when you reboot your Mac am I right?
    But the thing now is that the missing or eaten storage space isn't returned.
    For example, my Mac has 6.51 GB free space, it'll drop to about 6.39 GB, then sometimes it'd jump back up to 6.59 all of a sudden, no change in my usage or activity. Then it'd gradually drop to 6.29 again. And now it's at about 6.27.
    As of now, the free space only returns when I use CleanMyMac. So is this still a swap files issue?

    And i have not tried the free apps as I am trying to not download or delete anything to keep the storage space constant. I have read up about it and it seems that it just shows me what's using the space, but it won't show me if I have a memory leak or something that is causing this HDD space problem. Correct me if I'm wrong.
     
  20. simonsi macrumors 601

    simonsi

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    #21
    Normal operation means the figures will fluctuate - trying to plan your usage within a few hundred MB is an impossible task - that is why the recommendation is 10-15% which of itself has a vagueness factor of 25GB on a 500GB drive - how big is your drive??

    Again, helps to use the right words, memory leak applies to RAM, not HDD space.
     
  21. Kehhnough thread starter macrumors newbie

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    May 21, 2014
    #22
    Yeah I've realized that through reading around more and through this thread. I do refer to HDD storage space and not RAM. Through reading around, I am going to rephrase my question.

    An application, or something is using up storage memory on my Mac, and it releases and returns the memory when I use apps like CleanMyMac. How do I find out what is causing it?
     
  22. simonsi macrumors 601

    simonsi

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    #23
    If you are convinced that is the case then whatever CleanMyMac is removing must be related to the App concerned so review the list of removed files.

    I think the reverse, CMM is removing temporary cache files which the system recreates....locking you in a never-ending circle.

    How big is your hard drive with 6GB free????
     
  23. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #24
    Almost every app in existence caches some files on the drive. Some leave the cache files there, and others will delete the some of the cache files when you quit the. What you have been described here is perfectly normal disk space fluctuations due to swap files and cache files. You are trying to fix a problem that does not exist.

    I have read the thread again and other than your concern about this very small disk space fluctuation, are you having some sort of problem with your Mac? If you are, maybe you can explain what it is and we can focus on that.

    But this small disk space usage fluctuation is not a problem in itself.
     
  24. Kehhnough thread starter macrumors newbie

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    May 21, 2014
    #25
    I think it's the 250gb one? I don't remember it having as much as 400+gb when I first got it.

    And no, no other problems really, it's just this storage space fluctuation.

    I hope nothing is wrong and I'm just being paranoid then haha
     

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