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Squiggles Chitter

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Original poster
Jul 1, 2024
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I have an early 2013 macbook pro 15 inch. I installed macos sonoma using open core patcher. The machine is constantly overheating and fanning and its battery drains very fast. Any thoughts? I am looking for software related fixes
 
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winxmac

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Sep 1, 2021
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If the hardware is already maxed out, including an SSD for storage, on the software side, you should install the oldest compatible macOS version...

Just look at iPhone 4s running iOS 5.x/6.x vs running iOS 9.x
 

Squiggles Chitter

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jul 1, 2024
9
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I tried using the oldest compatible macOS version for a while but it was too old to perform basic tasks such as web brosing. That is why I upgaded to sonoma
 

DeltaMac

macrumors G5
Jul 30, 2003
13,615
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You can use Activity Monitor, to see what processes are using a lot of memory, and particularly those that use a lot of CPU time. That can have a direct affect on battery life. When launching Activity Monitor, go to the View menu, and make sure that All Processes is selected (not just My Processes) If you post back with what you find, someone may help with possible fixes that you can try.
 

Nils Zaayenga

macrumors newbie
Jan 27, 2023
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I have an early 2013 macbook pro 15 inch. I installed macos sonoma using open core patcher. The machine is constantly overheating and fanning and its battery drains very fast. Any thoughts? I am looking for software related fixes
Hello,

Among other things, I have a MacBook Pro from the beginning of 2011.
It has an SSD and 16 GB RAM,

Sonoma via OCLP did not work on my device either. I have the same Problems.
I think that Mac OS Monterey works best on the older devices.
 

MBAir2010

macrumors 604
May 30, 2018
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Im using MT Lion on my mid 13" 2012 MBP without any problems and now this is now my main computer.
Catalina was too hot while Mojave ate battery life but had the icloud settings syncing perfectly.
Monterey OCLP worked great for 4 days then shut down repeatedly in late 2022.

Seems to me that our macbooks cant perform as well as the original OSes
due to the processor and graphics card being out-dated to handle such tasks
that were developed for newer processors,
they still work, but with implications and heating problems.

I hope this makes sense.
 
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MBAir2010

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May 30, 2018
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That's odd. My mid-2012 MacBook Pro seems fine on Catalina.
For me, maybe the wd green 265 ssd was not good enough to run catalina at full speed.
i had to delete the OS on the same MBP 12 due to the hot sensitive to the touch temps,
now i remember that was running that at max tho.
 
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bousozoku

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Jun 25, 2002
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For me, maybe the wd green 265 ssd was not good enough to run catalina at full speed.
i had to delete the OS on the same MBP 12 due to the hot sensitive to the touch temps,
now i remember that was running that at max tho.
I bought the high end SSD from OtherWorld Computing. I've had two of them and they've been fine, plus having 16 GB of RAM, a quad-core i7, and GeForce 650M make for a powerful combination. I can still boil water when processing video, though.
 
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bousozoku

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Jun 25, 2002
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When I said oldest compatible macos I meant mountain lion. Also, I tried Catalina for a while but it overheated a ton.
I don't understand why either of you had overheating problems with Catalina, though.

Could it be that you're both using a dual-core i5?
 

MBAir2010

macrumors 604
May 30, 2018
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I don't understand why either of you had overheating problems with Catalina, though.

Could it be that you're both using a dual-core i5?
Screen Shot 2024-07-03 at 11.28.51 AM.png
 

MBAir2010

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May 30, 2018
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My device has an i7. The overheating cou be due to the old fans and thermal system.
My Macbook pro i7 is from 2012 and does not get hot with Mountain Lion but uncomfortable with Catalina,
so scientifically.... the thermal paste SHOULD be fine,
BUT
since this is a 2012 does thermal paste fade?
the process seems straight-forward and i did that in 2015 several times on other's Macbooks
Although i'm reluctant to fix something that is not broken, and will never use Catalina again.
while others who make online vids always re-paste any old macbooks they buy and fix.
hmmmmm.....
 
For me, maybe the wd green 265 ssd was not good enough to run catalina at full speed.
i had to delete the OS on the same MBP 12 due to the hot sensitive to the touch temps,
now i remember that was running that at max tho.

I know I’m necromancing your comment here, but there’s another factor really worth taking into mind with SSD models and performance, especially on the later, unsupported builds relying on, increasingly, APFS:

The marketing of WD’s Green line of SSDs is meant to mimic the low-energy consumption of its retired, Green HDDs (which weren’t speed demons, but they ran cooler due to how they were designed to spin down to a low RPM when idle and to rely on variable-demand rotation — which is why they were never rated at 5,400 or 7,200 rpm, but mostly moving about somewhere in between).

The Green line of SSDs, however, are now tiered as WD’s entry-level SSD. WD Green, unlike WD Blue, Red, and Black SSDs, lack a DRAM cache. This is where the price savings comes in/from.

What this means, plainly, is for non-sequential reads and writes to the SSD, everything bottlenecks much sooner without the presence of that RAM cache. It’s not unlike the way a computer itself bogs down when running a bunch of small processes concurrently, except with really low RAM: it bogs down and bottlenecking ensues, relying on the hard drive to handle memory caching.

At the device level, this is similar with SSDs. Without DRAM onboard to SSD, the drive is closer in analogue to, say, a Mac trying to run Snow Leopard on less than 1GB RAM from a HDD: it may eventually pull up the Desktop, but you’re going to hear that HDD inside chugging hard with all the swapping. You won’t once you add 7 or 15GB more to the system.

I’m unusually familiar with the WD line because it is what I buy and rely on for many of my Macs, both as SSDs running MacBook Pros and HDDs for archival storage in my Power Mac G5. But Seagate and the SanDisk brand (the latter now a brand under WD) also have their entry-level SSDs, which also lack that DRAM cache.

Many of the funky-named SSDs folks here have used to speed up their old PowerPC Macs — Zheino, DogFish, iRecdata, etc. — are cheap precisely because they lack the DRAM cache (as dynamic RAM, when compared against non-volatile RAM, is still more expensive, byte-per-byte).

All of this to offer: throw in at least a WD Blue SSD (or Seagate/SanDisk counterpart) instead of that WD Green, and leave the WD Green for data storage only. You’ll find — yes, even in Mojave, which is what I use on my late 2011 MBP, running two internal DRAM-cache SSDs — the battery life will probably improve: the drive controller isn’t having to work as hard for a lot of the constant, small-data-transfer tasks of, say, browser tabs. And with APFS, which takes snapshots of changes to contents, that DRAM cache will also make a difference.

My Macbook pro i7 is from 2012 and does not get hot with Mountain Lion but uncomfortable with Catalina,
so scientifically.... the thermal paste SHOULD be fine,
BUT
since this is a 2012 does thermal paste fade?

It absolutely does. Paste from that far back is basically just crumbly substrate of its former self, with ductility at a fraction of what it was, as well as its heat-transferring efficiency.

I’m like @Certificate of Excellence here, except for lesser-used, old, cooler Macs — like the slower PowerPC models I have — it might be closer to five or six years between when I clean and replace the paste. With my early 2008 MBP or 2011 MBP (both the late 2011 and its prdecessor, the early 2011), I replace the paste around every two or three years, mostly as a preventive way to keep things cool, especially since these are not only legacy systems, but also dual cores handling stuff typically optimized these days for four cores or more.


the process seems straight-forward and i did that in 2015 several times on other's Macbooks

Although i'm reluctant to fix something that is not broken, and will never use Catalina again.
while others who make online vids always re-paste any old macbooks they buy and fix.
hmmmmm.....

Try to think of things like replacing paste, dusting out the innards, especially the fan elements, and even cleaning out the keyboard assembly on MBPs as preventive, long-term, and necessary maintenance/upkeep — not a “fix” or a “repair”. In a mechanical sense, like bicycle upkeep, this is like cleaning your drive chain and re-packing axle/bracket bearings with grease every few years. Your Macs will respond to the difference by not running nearly as toasty.
 
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f54da

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Dec 22, 2021
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@B S Magnet
>Paste from that far back is basically just crumbly substrate of its former self, with ductility at a fraction of what it was, as well as its heat-transferring efficiency.

Do you have any good literature to back this up? Too much of the discussion I've found is anecdotes from various "gamer" circles who just parrot lines. It's not immediately obvious a priori that dry thermal compound would have less thermal conductivity than the same wet thermal compound.

There seem to be 3 different factors at play:
* Thermal compound has lower conductance than direct heatsink-cpu contact, but higher conductance than air. So as everyone knows the purpose of thermal compound is to bridge the interface.
* A more liquidy thermal paste better allows coating only the needed surfaces (and avoid coating spots that already have good contact), but at the same time liquidy thermal pastes can also suffer from various fluid dynamics effects induced by heat cycles (e.g. "pump out effect")
* Most of the the fancier thermal pastes tend to be liquidy, compared to the OEM thermal pastes which tend to be drier. Not sure if there's a material science reason for this
 
@B S Magnet
>Paste from that far back is basically just crumbly substrate of its former self, with ductility at a fraction of what it was, as well as its heat-transferring efficiency.

Do you have any good literature to back this up? Too much of the discussion I've found is anecdotes from various "gamer" circles who just parrot lines. It's not immediately obvious a priori that dry thermal compound would have less thermal conductivity than the same wet thermal compound.

I do!

And I’m deliberately going back to earlier research preceding “hypesearch” of stuff (like white papers put out by thermal management companies), as the science and the applied physics are neither novel nor remarkable. They’re well established.

The body of engineering research on thermal paste (grease) established this thermal efficiency over time from at least 25 years ago and probably much further back. The technical term for old paste losing efficiency is thermal bake — what we call “drying out”:

“The pump-out mechanism and phase separation mechanisms have an exponential dependence on temperature, with a twofold increase in degradation for every 10°C increase in average operating temperature of the interface material. Data collected also indicate that for power cycling, the assembly between 0 and 100°C over 7500 cycles results in a four to sixfold increase in thermal resistance compared to a negligible increase in resistance for a 0 to 80°C exposure over 2500 power cycles” [Viswanath, R., V. Wakharkar, A. Watwe, & V. Lebonheur. “Thermal Performance Challenges from Silicon to Systems.” Intel Technology Journal, 2000(3); p. 8.]

emphasis mine

It continues into findings that physical shock to the system, such as moving around a laptop in one’s bag or moving it from desk to coffee table to wherever, also degrades thermal paste, especially when that paste dries out and embrittles over time and heat cycles.

And there’s been my own field testing, some of which I’ve shared on the PowerPC forum (including one early 2011 MBP before/after new paste).

In addition, I’m not a gamer. I’ve never been a gamer. I’m boring.


There seem to be 3 different factors at play:
* Thermal compound has lower conductance than direct heatsink-cpu contact, but higher conductance than air. So as everyone knows the purpose of thermal compound is to bridge the interface.

Of course, as a heat sink substrate is not liable to be, at the microscopic level, as smooth as a silicon wafer (given how only the latter is of a vitreous — and thus, smooth — origin; with the other being imperfect, slightly rough (even if not evident to our dull cow eyes) and even some micro-level crystalline features from metal cooling during fabrication).

* A more liquidy thermal paste better allows coating only the needed surfaces (and avoid coating spots that already have good contact), but at the same time liquidy thermal pastes can also suffer from various fluid dynamics effects induced by heat cycles (e.g. "pump out effect")

Right, but this is really beside the point unless we’re putting emphasis on the liquid metal thermal pastes.

For the most part, with grease-style thermal paste, there is some “pump out”. But I find the bigger culprit (with my experiences of adding fresh paste to every single system — CPU, GPU, memory controllers, etc. — I’ve owned, even multiple times on the same system, owing how long I’ve owned and used them) is the drying effect of both ambient environment use, heat cycling (not necessarily powering on/off, but between idle and, say, running a Handbrake encode queue for days on end), and time.

For my daily-use systems, I pay care to observe the general uptick in CPU die temperatures over time — especially after I do periodic dust-outs (maybe three dust-outs for every one paste replacement). When I take note that temps aren’t coming back down to what they were when the paste was fresh, I take stock of how long it’s been (I log it, because nerd), and when I have a Sunday afternoon free, usually on a crappy weather day, I open up systems and replace paste.


* Most of the the fancier thermal pastes tend to be liquidy, compared to the OEM thermal pastes which tend to be drier. Not sure if there's a material science reason for this

There may be, but it’s sort of beside the point: even pastes I’ve applied myself, from pastes I chose to buy for their tested performance and reviews, will over time dry out in very much the same manner as OEM paste. I’ve bore witness to this time and again, whether we’re talking about Arctic Silver or Noctua or whatever. I acknowledge this as the aforementioned thermal bake issue which comes from the above three factors: heat cycling; shock of regular movement; and time.
 
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TheShortTimer

macrumors 68030
Mar 27, 2017
2,858
5,020
London, UK
Im using MT Lion on my mid 13" 2012 MBP without any problems and now this is now my main computer.
Catalina was too hot while Mojave ate battery life but had the icloud settings syncing perfectly.
Monterey OCLP worked great for 4 days then shut down repeatedly in late 2022.

This is strange. I've run Catalina on the same model and experienced none of that. Ventura via OCLP is now its default OS and there has never been any problems.

Seems to me that our macbooks cant perform as well as the original OSes due to the processor and graphics card being out-dated to handle such tasks that were developed for newer processors, they still work, but with implications and heating problems.

I disagree somewhat. Apple has consistently practised forced obsolescence in order to push consumers into jettisoning their current computers and upgrading to the latest models by barring any access to future OS releases even though scores of older Macs will run the newer OS versions just fine and the restrictions are artificial.

This dates back to at least the PPC era and a good personal example is my iMac G3, which is officially limited to Panther but it's actually capable of easily running Tiger. On my least powerful Intel Mac, patched Catalina runs better than Snow Leopard but Apple prevents its official installation - just so that the bean counters can squeeze even more money out of people.
 

MBAir2010

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May 30, 2018
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This is strange. I've run Catalina on the same model and experienced none of that. Ventura via OCLP is now its default OS and there has never been any problems.
Did you have the thermal paste reapplied on the MBP?
i ordered some yesterday since that was never performed and perhaps
that was why Catalina ran too hot to the touch for for my liking.
even so, im sticking with MtLion since that works the best for my needs.

In my experience, the other important aspect of running a native OSX on a certain Macbook is battery life,
i was getting under 3 with Mojave and almost 2 with Catalina while that MPB is getting 5 hours with Mountain Lion.

anyways thanks for the info, and i need to keep my fingers crossed since the MBP is on injured list
until i get a 3 point screwdriver to remove the battery and check the trackpad for any defects.
 
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