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  1. #1
    Question Will 4GB RAM upgrade increase performance?
    I've had my Macbook Pro (Mid-2009) for almost 3 years now, and have never had a problem with it until recently. I only had 8GB of disk memory left, so I bought an external to free up some space with the hopes of an increase in performance. It didn't work, and my Macbook Pro is still running slow.

    Some people have recommended that I increase my RAM, and have said that will help. What do you all think? Why all the sudden do I need more RAM? The computer ran fine when I bought it.

    Your feedback and or advice would be greatly appreciated.
    Weapon: Macbook Pro 5,5 (Mid-2009)

  2. #2
    Will 4GB RAM upgrade increase performance?
    harryb2448's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 28, 2007
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    Nambucca Heads Australia
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    Specs:
    iMac i5 2.7GHz, 16GB memory, OS 10.10.5
    Use a cleaning utility such as Onyx. Do you have any AV software or Mackeeper installed? Whilst increasing the memory will bring some improvement do not expect it to match a faster processor.
    Hang on to those original install discs like grim death! Using OS X.7 or later make a bootable USB thumb drive before running Installer!

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by harryb2448 View Post
    Use a cleaning utility such as Onyx. Do you have any AV software or Mackeeper installed? Whilst increasing the memory will bring some improvement do not expect it to match a faster processor.
    I do not have any antivirus software or Mackeeper. Do you recommend getting both? If so, what is the best free antivirus software available for macs?

    I appreciate your help.
    Weapon: Macbook Pro 5,5 (Mid-2009)

  4. #4
    Will 4GB RAM upgrade increase performance?
    pigoo3's Avatar
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    May 20, 2008
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    U.S.
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    2011 13" MBP 2.3ghz, 8gig ram, OS 10.7.5
    Quote Originally Posted by NewtotheMacs View Post
    I've had my Macbook Pro (Mid-2009) for almost 3 years now, and have never had a problem with it until recently. I only had 8GB of disk memory left, so I bought an external to free up some space with the hopes of an increase in performance. It didn't work, and my Macbook Pro is still running slow.

    Some people have recommended that I increase my RAM, and have said that will help. What do you all think? Why all the sudden do I need more RAM? The computer ran fine when I bought it.

    Your feedback and or advice would be greatly appreciated.
    How much ram do you currently have in your MacBook Pro? Depending on what you currently have...a 4gig ram upgrade may or may not help.

    Also. You mentioned having only 8gig of free space on your MacBook Pro's hard drive...and that you purchased an external drive to try to free up some space on your MacBook Pro HD. How successful were you...how many gig's of free space do you now have?

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  5. #5
    Will 4GB RAM upgrade increase performance?
    cwa107's Avatar
    Member Since
    Dec 20, 2006
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    26,758
    Specs:
    15" MBP, Core i7/2GHz, 8GB RAM, 480GB Crucial M500 SSD
    In addition to Pigoo3's advice, I would say that if you're running your system partition at less than 10-15% free space for an extended period of time, you could be experiencing fragmentation issues, even after space has been freed.

    Before spending money on memory (as opposed to - say, iDefrag), I would run your most commonly used applications and then open up Activity Monitor (Applications => Utilities). Click the System Memory tab and check the pie chart. If there's not a significant portion of green or blue space in the chart, then it's likely that a memory upgrade will significantly help.

    If, however, you have plenty of free memory with your most frequently used applications open, then chances are you just have a fragmentation issue that needs to be sorted out. If you don't want to buy a product like iDefrag, TechTool Pro or one of the other products that can defrag, you can instantly defrag your disk by running a full backup with a product like Carbon Copy Cloner or SuperDuper!, boot from the back up drive. Then use Disk Utility to format the internal drive and then finish by restoring the backup.
    Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!

    https://youtu.be/KHZ8ek-6ccc

  6. #6
    Will 4GB RAM upgrade increase performance?
    Zoolook's Avatar
    Member Since
    Sep 24, 2006
    Location
    Brooklyn, New York
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    2,756
    Specs:
    15" MacBook Pro, i7 2.66Ghz, 8GB RAM, 512GB SSD; iPad 3, iPhone 5
    Assuming it came in the default configuration with 2GB of RAM, doubling it to 4GB will make a difference, especially if you're running Lion or Mountain Lion - but even Snow Leopard will enjoy more RAM.

    The next best thing, or perhaps even a better upgrade, would be an SSD - that will make a huge difference to disk performance.
    In the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is stoned to death.
    - Joan D. Vinge


  7. #7
    Will 4GB RAM upgrade increase performance?
    harryb2448's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 28, 2007
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    Nambucca Heads Australia
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    20,014
    Specs:
    iMac i5 2.7GHz, 16GB memory, OS 10.10.5
    And keep well away from commercial AV software and Mackeeper.
    Hang on to those original install discs like grim death! Using OS X.7 or later make a bootable USB thumb drive before running Installer!

  8. #8
    Question
    Quote Originally Posted by pigoo3 View Post
    How much ram do you currently have in your MacBook Pro? Depending on what you currently have...a 4gig ram upgrade may or may not help.

    Also. You mentioned having only 8gig of free space on your MacBook Pro's hard drive...and that you purchased an external drive to try to free up some space on your MacBook Pro HD. How successful were you...how many gig's of free space do you now have?

    - Nick
    Thank you for all of your responses. It's greatly appreciated.

    I currently have 2GB of RAM, which is what it came with (Macbook Pro 5,5). I'm looking into upgrading to 8GB of RAM but don't know if I want to make the investment.

    I freed up some some of my HD memory using my external and now have 25GB available.

    I'm really getting frustrated with this Macbook Pro. What about a disk defragmentation? Is there even a way to do that on a Mac? Will that improve my computers performance?

    Thanks for all of your responses. I appreciate it.
    Weapon: Macbook Pro 5,5 (Mid-2009)

  9. #9
    Will 4GB RAM upgrade increase performance?
    dtravis7's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 04, 2005
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    Modesto, Ca.
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    Specs:
    iMac late 2007 10.11.b4, iMac 2008 10.10.5, Macbook2007 10.7.5, Mac Mini 10.7.5, iPhone 3GS Note 8!!
    What version of OSX is installed? Have you upgraded the OS at any point?

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by dtravis7 View Post
    What version of OSX is installed? Have you upgraded the OS at any point?
    I have Snow Leopard and have not upgraded my OS. I was thinking about upgrading to Mountain Lion but haven't yet.
    Weapon: Macbook Pro 5,5 (Mid-2009)

  11. #11
    Will 4GB RAM upgrade increase performance?
    pigoo3's Avatar
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    May 20, 2008
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    2011 13" MBP 2.3ghz, 8gig ram, OS 10.7.5
    Quote Originally Posted by NewtotheMacs View Post
    I currently have 2GB of RAM, which is what it came with (Macbook Pro 5,5). I'm looking into upgrading to 8GB of RAM but don't know if I want to make the investment.
    I would upgrade to at least 4gig of ram. 8gig would only cost $50-$60 bucks…so 8gig would probably be the better choice IMHO.

    Quote Originally Posted by NewtotheMacs View Post
    I freed up some some of my HD memory using my external and now have 25GB available.
    25gig of free space on your HD may still not be enough. Mid-2009 MacBook Pro's came with somewhere around a 320gig HD. So 25gig free is less than 10%.

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  12. #12
    Will 4GB RAM upgrade increase performance?

    Member Since
    May 20, 2009
    Posts
    44
    Why all the sudden do I need more RAM?
    All of a sudden? No. Between then and now you have added "STUFF" to your machine. Everytime u get an update of something, invariably the new software code tend to be larger and require more horse power. It's a conspiracy between software and hardware vendors.

    To know whether more ram will help, look at your PAGE FAULT. This number tells you whether your machine is swapping a lot, more ram will minimize the swapping (swapping = machine repeatedly uses the HD as a virtual memory holder when u ask it to use more actual memory than it has. HD access=slow things down).

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by MrBobb View Post
    All of a sudden? No. Between then and now you have added "STUFF" to your machine. Everytime u get an update of something, invariably the new software code tend to be larger and require more horse power. It's a conspiracy between software and hardware vendors.

    To know whether more ram will help, look at your PAGE FAULT. This number tells you whether your machine is swapping a lot, more ram will minimize the swapping (swapping = machine repeatedly uses the HD as a virtual memory holder when u ask it to use more actual memory than it has. HD access=slow things down).
    How do I look at my Page Fault? Thanks for your help by the way.
    Weapon: Macbook Pro 5,5 (Mid-2009)

  14. #14
    Will 4GB RAM upgrade increase performance?
    Lifeisabeach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NewtotheMacs View Post
    How do I look at my Page Fault? Thanks for your help by the way.
    Just ignore that. It's not that he's wrong or that it's a bad suggestion, but Snow Leopard runs MUCH better with 4 GB RAM and always has. I also think overanalyzing this is a bit much for your level of technical know-how. I also agree you really need a bigger hard drive. It's packed so tight and likely very heavily fragmented. Defragging will probably help, but that's a short term solution for you at best. I would, at the bare minimum, get a 500GB or larger drive for now (assuming your existing one is 320 GB). Once you have your system cloned over to that and have had a chance to see how well things are working, you can then consider if you need to upgrade the RAM.

    Please verify and include the exact model/year of your Mac and OS X version number (available from "About This Mac", then "More Info" on the Apple menu).
    ------
    Links: Onyx | EasyFind | Apple Hardware Test | How to test your hard drive | The Safe Mac Adware Removal Guide | Uninstall MacKeeper
    ------
    Lifeisabeach - Mac-Forums Member of the Month June 2009, Feb 2012, and March 2013.

  15. #15
    Will 4GB RAM upgrade increase performance?

    Member Since
    Dec 25, 2011
    Location
    West Coast
    Posts
    3
    Specs:
    iMac PPC G5 OSX, macbook, ipod
    I added a memory card and now Safari crashes all the time. Any advice?



    Running OS X 10.5.8

    Model Name: iMac G5
    Model Identifier: PowerMac8,2
    Processor Name: PowerPC G5 (3.1)
    Processor Speed: 2 GHz
    Number Of CPUs: 1
    L2 Cache (per CPU): 512 KB
    Memory: 2 GB

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