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My PowerBook's Tubes are Clogged

top this!

Of late, my PowerBook has been running somewhat slow – scrolling through a PDF is less than zippy, and typing this into ecto is painful. I’m not quite sure what the problem with it — hopefully it’s not the SyncServer, iTunes seems to have red-hands too. While using top and digging around on the command line is, uh, “fun,” I thought I’d ask you, dear readers, if there are any silver bullets for answering the question “why is my Mac so slow?”

Categories: Systems Management.

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11 Responses

  1. Obviously you need a new laptop.

    Have you tried closing an app or 2? If I recall, you're a big fan of having 30 applications running at a time.

  2. mmm load is VERY high. Kill Adium (570M VM??). Does it do this right after restarting?? Any services running?

    rick gregoryOctober 4, 2006 @ 11:16 am
  3. I totally dig running as many apps as possible.
    And, yeah, what's the deal with Adium?

  4. Is it the 1.0 beta or .89? Jeez, I just checked… on my Macbook it's taking 345. Of course Gizmo take 412 and my load averages are 1% of yours….

    try running top so it sorts by CPU%:

    top -ocpu -s 5 -n 20

    rick gregoryOctober 4, 2006 @ 12:06 pm
  5. Hold it, what am I thinking? If the tubes are clogged, it MUST be because someone sent you an internet… yeah, that's it… 🙂

    rick gregoryOctober 4, 2006 @ 12:07 pm
  6. To have top on OS X sort processes in order of CPU usage do this:

    top -us3

    Also check out /Applications/Utilities/Activity

  7. Thanks for all the tips. I've found some processes running the background — like MySQL — that I've killed and things seem slightly better.

  8. I've had issues in the past with spotlight indexing (mdimport). It doesn't look like it has a large amount of cpu time in that screen shot, but if you detect that it's an issue, turn off spotlight indexing on all drives (mdutil -i off /), remove the indexes (mdutil -E /), reboot for good measure, then turn spotlight back on (mdutil -i on /).

    Leave the machine completely alone overnight, to allow the indexing to finish, and viola.

  9. Joe: thanks for the tip. I've long wondered if turning off Spotlight will help. I'll have to figure out some way of monitoring it to test with and without. Perhaps my systems management background will finally pay off! ;>
    Also, I think the number of apps I run at once has something to do with it: though, I've always run — as mray would say — "30 applications" at once…so it might be red herring.

  10. Cote, face it… you need a Macbook. Give into the Mastercard…

    rick gregoryOctober 10, 2006 @ 8:15 pm
  11. Ooo…MacBook. I was at the Apple store dropping off the PowerBook and they sure did look nice.