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Jaybee's avatar

Why is my Mac loosing memory 1GB every 24 hours?

Asked by Jaybee (220points) July 14th, 2008

My mac computer is loosing memory 1 sometimes 2 GB at a time and I have no idea what is happening. I have tried to find what is sucking the memory away so fast. This just started a 4 days ago. Help!

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14 Answers

Stocky's avatar

Go to your Activity Monitor and see what using it.

Allie's avatar

I’m not a Mac expert, but could a virus be doing this? I know Macs have a stronger defense against viruses, but they aren’t totally immune, right? (I’m probably wayyyyy off base on this one – sorry.)

PupnTaco's avatar

My guess (like Stocky) is a process not freeing up RAM when it’s done with it (poor programming).

Have you run Software Update lately?

Jaybee's avatar

Yes. I’ve run apple software update recently and I think thats when it started. But I can’t pinpoint what it doing it.
Going to run Activity Monitor now.

Jaybee's avatar

I don’t know how to read the Activity Monitor but the ‘WindowServer’ to be pulling memory and the ‘kernel_task’ is also. But why?

Jaybee's avatar

‘WindowServer and ‘kernel_task’ is pulling memory. I’m down to 5.70GB only. Does anybody know what could be happening?

Allie's avatar

From what I’ve been told by a programmer friend, kernel is like the heartbeat of your Mac. He says sometimes third party parts can hog up resources.. like an HP printer or scanner or something. Are you using anything besides Apple products? He says if it says PID 1 next to it it could be user related (meaning that it might not happen if you sign in using a different account of your Mac), but that if it says PID 0 it’s not user related at all and it’s at the heart of your system.

jrpowell's avatar

Macintosh:~ youdontneedtoknow$ uptime
11:54 up 8 days, 17:06, 2 users, load averages: 0.51 0.42 0.38

My uptime is 8 days.

Here is what Activity Monitor is showing. Image

Is it much different from that?

Jaybee's avatar

Allie: HP Scanjet Manager is active. Will turning my scanner off stop the monitoring? (also it says beside the Scanjet Manager for kind: PowerPC. Why? All others say Intel except the scanner.
As for the image john sent; I’m comparing and
for kernal_task mine says under Real: 338.10MB and under virtual memory: 1.47GB.

Jaybee's avatar

Is there is Universal Access app. keeps showing up and then disappearing.

Jaybee's avatar

I meant to say there is something called Universal Access app. comes and goes every 2 seconds.

wildflower's avatar

Do you have filevault switched on?

I suspect a restart will fix it. I wouldn’t recommend experimenting with any tasks owned by root, but try quitting the top 3 user owned processes, see what that does.

Allie's avatar

Jaybee: Ok, I asked my friend Paul (who is the programmer) and he said that sometimes an HP Scanner that runs HP Scan Manager software in the background can cause a problem for the CPU (like slow performance) causing that kernel_task thing to use a huge chunk of your CPU. He suggested opening Activity Monitor (what Stocky was talking about above), locate the HP Scan Manager process, and force quit.
You might want to wait for the go ahead from other (more Mac educated) Flutherites before you proceed with this. My friend is a Mac guy, but I am not a tech savvy person. Let’s see if someone can tell you if this is sound advice.. if it it, then I guess it’s worth a shot.

crunchaweezy's avatar

I’ve got this in Terminal:

alex-marchuks-imac:~ biggyme13$ uptime
20:47 up 3 days, 2:58, 2 users, load averages: 0.19 0.21 0.18

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