MBP is suddenly very slow and oftentimes unresponsive

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by slater1108, Oct 15, 2012.

  1. slater1108 macrumors newbie

    Jul 20, 2011
    Started happening yesterday, although I have had a gradual slow down in my Mac's performance in the last few months. I thought it was just chrome at first but it has affected every app.

    -Every app gets pinwheeled by simple tasks (typing, clicking, dragging window, etc)
    -Some of the time apps continue to run with this dramatic slowness, but often they become unresponsive. I get frustrated and hold the power button as Finder is even affected.
    -There is a faint, rhythmic noise my MBP is making that sounds almost like breathing or a small spring getting flicked. Not sure if its the disc drive, hard drive, or what.

    I'm not sure if this is a hardware issue, or if it is possibly malware, or even if my computer needs a good digital cleanup.

    I have run CCleaner. I did a "disk repair" in disk utility and it said that it was fine. I'm really unsure of what is up.

    Help please!

    Thanks in advance.
  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    Follow every step of the following instructions precisely. Do not skip any steps.
    1. Launch Activity Monitor
    2. Change "My Processes" at the top to "All Processes"
    3. Click on the "% CPU" column heading once or twice, so the arrow points downward (highest values on top).
      (If that column isn't visible, right-click on the column headings and check it, NOT "CPU Time")
    4. Click on the System Memory tab at the bottom.
    5. Take a screen shot of the entire Activity Monitor window, then scroll down to see the rest of the list, take another screen shot
    6. Post your screenshots.
    Not impossible, but very unlikely. Mac Virus/Malware FAQ
    If you're having performance issues, this may help:
    You don't need "cleaner" or "maintenance" apps to keep your Mac running well, and some of these apps can do more harm than good. Some can even degrade, rather than improve system performance.

    Some remove files/folders or unused languages or architectures, which does nothing more than free up some drive space, with the risk of deleting something important in the process. These apps will not make your Mac run faster or more efficiently, since having stuff stored on a drive does not impact performance, unless you're running out of drive space.

    Some of these apps delete caches, which can hurt performance, rather than help it, since more system resources are used and performance suffers while each cache is being rebuilt. Caches exist to improve performance, so deleting them isn't advisable in most cases.

    Many of the tasks performed by these apps should only be done selectively to troubleshoot specific problems, not en masse as routine maintenance.

    Mac OS X does a good job of taking care of itself, without the need for 3rd party software. Among other things, it has its own maintenance scripts that run silently in the background on a daily, weekly and monthly basis, without user intervention.

  3. slater1108, Oct 15, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2012

    slater1108 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 20, 2011
    Thanks much GGJstudios.

    Here are the first and third screenshots that I took (not sure what happened with the 2nd screenshot). This shows the top and bottom of the list, excluding some of the middle. If you want me to retake the screenshots I can tomorrow, it's just with this slow of a computer currently it takes a lot more work :/.

    Screen Shot 2012-10-15 at 1.39.46 PM.png

    Screen Shot 2012-10-15 at 1.40.39 PM.png

    Interestingly, although it doesn't show much CPU usage, "window server" was taking up close to 30% during my screen shot. Not sure if that means much though.

    Thanks again.
  4. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    There's nothing in the screen shots that would indicate high demands on your system. Were you getting beachballs at the time of those shots?
  5. slater1108 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 20, 2011
    Yes I was. The screenshots were taking quite awhile to process as well. I'm constantly getting the pinwheels.

    Like I said before, there is a faint sound my MBP is making that I don't think was there before. Maybe it's something with the hardware?
  6. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    It could be a failing hard drive. Make sure you have a good current backup.

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