WindowServer Constant CPU Usage

Discussion in 'OS X El Capitan (10.11)' started by r3volution11, Jun 9, 2015.

  1. r3volution11 macrumors member

    r3volution11

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    #1
    Has anyone else been experiencing WindowServer using about 30% CPU on a consistent basis?

    I'm on a Mid-2012 MBPr and it's been that way since install.
     
  2. nick19 macrumors member

    nick19

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    London, UK
    #2
    Not seeing that on my Late 2012 13" rMBP. Created a new partition and installed on that this morning. Nothing unusual showing up in Activity Monitor at the moment, but it's early days!
     
  3. r3volution11 thread starter macrumors member

    r3volution11

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    #3
    I guess it could be something with my setup that's a bit buggy. I'm using dark mode currently, I'll try giving regular mode a shot.
     
  4. speedyyellow macrumors member

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    Cambs/London
    #4
    I get this in Yosemite on my 2015 15" MBP, it's very annoying.
     
  5. moebis macrumors member

    moebis

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    #5
    I'm on the same system, I'm getting between 5%-25% on WindowServer, and nothing is being done on the system except for looking at the Activity Monitor. I've noticed my 2012 MBRr getting hotter then normal too. Also notice this on iOS 9 on my iPhone 6 plus. It gets very hot now.
     
  6. aldrinjtauro macrumors regular

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    Birmingham, AL
    #6
    I've never really noticed WindowServer before, so I can't compare, but on my Air clean install, its usually hovering at around 5-8%. It's usually right under kernel_task, but sometimes goes over.
     
  7. r3volution11 thread starter macrumors member

    r3volution11

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    #7
    I haven't paid attention to temperature before so I can't compare it previously but with the CPU being used a bit more on a consistent basis that makes sense.

    My iPhone 6 is also running really hot with iOS 9, plus the battery drain is killer. I figured that'd be the case however, it's been that way with every other beta really.
     
  8. moebis macrumors member

    moebis

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    #8
    Well, if the CPU is being used on a more consistent basis, you're going to have more heat. What doesn't make sense is why the CPU is being pegged like that?
     
  9. r3volution11 thread starter macrumors member

    r3volution11

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    #9
    My wild guess is that it has something to do with Metal and more optimizations need to be made when using the onboard Intel GPU.
     
  10. moebis macrumors member

    moebis

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    #10
    You're right! I turned off automatic graphics switching (so I'm just using the Nvidia GPU) and the WindowServer is now hanging around 2-5% ....big difference.
     
  11. r3volution11 thread starter macrumors member

    r3volution11

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    #11
    I got all excited but this didn't help me any. Still hovering around 25% when I have my usual stuff open on my displays (15" + Thunderbolt Display). If I had some stuff it gets down to around 10% but will still jump over 20% occasionally. Oh well.
     
  12. scrmtrey macrumors regular

    scrmtrey

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    Mar 28, 2013
    #12
    WindowServer is used for the Dashboard/widgets.

    So try to detach widgets from dashboard and check the cpu usage again. Or maybe delete them from the OSX, just for testing purposes.

    iStat could be reason for "high" cpu usage.
     
  13. aldrinjtauro macrumors regular

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    #13
    From what I've read, WindowServer is OS X's equivalent of LightDM or Gnome DM. It pretty much draws everything you see on the screen and is the basis of your session. It doesn't just do Dashboard (and in any case, I have Dashboard disabled on this clean install, so it's not like it has any enabled widgets or is even running).
     
  14. MikhailT macrumors 601

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    Nov 12, 2007
    #14
    False, WindowServer is used to draw everything you see on your screen. That's why the usage is higher than you have transparency enabled and reduced when you disable it.

    I've filed a radar on this in the past and they're working on optimizing it as much as possible but they basically said it is expected to incur some CPU cost due to the UI on Yosemite and so on.

    Metal is supposed to help reduce the CPU usage by reducing the CPU overhead with optimized GPU calls on El Cap but so far, not entirely optimized yet as we see here.
     
  15. scrmtrey, Jun 16, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2015

    scrmtrey macrumors regular

    scrmtrey

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    #15
    Oh my bad than. But maybe it is drawing widgets in background. :)

    I've got 2 spaces and 5 windows openede while extracting a bluray (rar parts) and WindowsServer is at 2-3%. (Yosemite) But i think that before where i had el cap on the system , there wasn't any higher usage.

    This is with integrated Intel HD3000 (384MB).


    And according to this , it can cause higher cpu if you have many icons on the desktop.
    Source: http://www.macissues.com/2014/10/20/prevent-the-windowserver-process-from-dragging-yosemite-down/
     
  16. MikhailT macrumors 601

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    Nov 12, 2007
    #16
    What model and year is your Mac?

    WindowServer is typically much worse on Retina Macs, which makes sense because of the scaling it has to do all the time. On my `12 rMBP 15", it is constantly above 6% and often goes up to 30% if I have multiple windows on screen.
     
  17. scrmtrey macrumors regular

    scrmtrey

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    #17

    It is MBP15 early 2011.
     
  18. MrNomNoms macrumors 65816

    MrNomNoms

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    #18
    *sigh* is it a 13" or a 15" one? please give specific hardware specifications so that it is possible to differentiate a general problem with OS X or whether it is related to that specific hardware model.
     
  19. kwokaaron macrumors 6502a

    kwokaaron

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    Sep 20, 2013
    #19
    Mid-2012 only has a 15" model. 13" was introduced in Late-2012.
     
  20. MikhailT macrumors 601

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    Nov 12, 2007
    #20
    Yea, that explains it, it's not a retina model, so the WindowServer is not going to be as stressed as a Retina model.
     
  21. matov macrumors newbie

    matov

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    Jul 30, 2008
    Location:
    Seville
    #21
    Same problem here. WindowServer is using 15-30+% of CPU.

    I have a late 2008 macbookpro with an nvidia 9400 and a 9600. It happens with both cards.
     
  22. theSeb macrumors 604

    theSeb

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    Location:
    Poole, England
    #22
    Not a new problem, as can be seen in the related threads at the bottom. With issues like these the first thing to do is create a new user, login and check if the issue exists. That will help to confirm if it is an issue specific to your software setup.
     
  23. scrmtrey macrumors regular

    scrmtrey

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    #23
    But still, this should not happend at all, retina or not. :)
     
  24. MikhailT macrumors 601

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    Nov 12, 2007
    #24
    Correct, no one is saying otherwise. The hope is that Metal is supposed to reduce the CPU usage regardless of what display you have by allowing the GPU to pick up more of the work (which it can do faster). But then again, how optimized is Metal driver that it won't eat up more battery?

    So far, we're not seeing anything like that in El Cap DP1. Hopefully, DP2 will improve this.
     
  25. scrmtrey macrumors regular

    scrmtrey

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    Mar 28, 2013
    #25
    Yap, all retinas support metal right?

    New beta(DP2) on monday or tuesday, will see. :)
     

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