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OS X - Operating System General OS operation information and support

Memory Leaks


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KaysoKray

 
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Every couple days I get this message from my Mac Book Air that my startup disk is full. I don't usually download anything. 24 of the 59 gigs of space are files I put there. I try and delete a couple things (never enough to free up 10 gb) then restart my computer and check the disk space to find 10 gigabytes available. I did some research and found out that the problem might be memory leaks from one or more applications. The problem is I don't know how to determine which applications are leaking, and I don't know what to do once I find them. Can anyone help me?

Edit:
I looked up things about diskspace and memory. I from what I read, memory is the space used to store running programs. Certain actions (such as saving a file) can copy data from memory to permanent storgage. When I check the diskspace a majority of what is taking up space is the yellow "other" category. From what I understand the data from the memory leak could be being saved somewhere. I could be wrong though.
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Memory and storage are not the same. Memory leaks has nothing to do with running out of storage space.

10GB is really not enough for OS X to be happy. You should use Disk Inventory X to figure out what is hogging up all the space on your MBA and either move them to an external storage or delete it if you don't need it..

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Could have nothing to do with memory leaks.
Could be sleep image file taking up several GBs.
Could be virtual memory taking up multiple GBs.
Running Windows in a virtual machine - there's some more virtual memory.

While I've not tried filling an SSD, feel pretty sure they can run and work acceptably on much less free space than a conventional drive. Still, 10 GB free space right after a clean boot - not enough.

How much is enough??? Depends on how much RAM you have, what apps you're running, and what you're doing in them... I have not tested SSDs to find that spot where it begins affecting the operation of the OS. Would think 15% should be plenty, I haven't allowed my only machine with a SSD under 40% free space yet, so I have nothing to report.

And if/once you figure out an app has a memory leak, the only thing you can do is stop using the app until such time as the developer fixes it. Personally, wouldn't even waste my time looking there. At least not while you only have 10GB free space to begin with.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by KaysoKray View Post
Every couple days I get this message from my Mac Book Air that my startup disk is full.
Could be that you're creating files, downloading videos, uploading large photos, etc....which fills whatever free space you have available.

OS X also needs a certain amount of free space to create "swap files" to run efficiently.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KaysoKray View Post
I try and delete a couple things then restart my computer and check the disk space to find 10 gigabytes available.
Yes...this is what should happen. If the HD is full...and you delete some files...then yes...a specific number of gigabytes of HD storage should be freed up. But then that 10 gigs could subsequently be filled with the possible activities mentioned above.

Also...operating with only 10 gigs of free space is not a very good idea. As mentioned above...Mac OS X needs a certain amount of free HD space to create swap files to work efficiently.

If you have a retina MacBook Pro with only a 128gig SSD...128gig is probably not enough for you. When we get questions from folks considering a retina MBP purchase...this is one of the things we usually address. Is 128gigs enough??

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KaysoKray

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pigoo3 View Post
Could be that you're creating files, downloading videos, uploading large photos, etc....which fills whatever free space you have available.

OS X also needs a certain amount of free space to create "swap files" to run efficiently.



Yes...this is what should happen. If the HD is full...and you delete some files...then yes...a specific number of gigabytes of HD storage should be freed up. But then that 10 gigs could subsequently be filled with the possible activities mentioned above.

Also...operating with only 10 gigs of free space is not a very good idea. As mentioned above...Mac OS X needs a certain amount of free HD space to create swap files to work efficiently.

If you have a retina MacBook Pro with only a 128gig SSD...128gig is probably not enough for you. When we get questions from folks considering a retina MBP purchase...this is one of the things we usually address. Is 128gigs enough??

- Nick
Thank you smart aleck. I don't download things regularly, and the files I create are all relatively small (50 mb and under) What I delete is never enough to free up 10gb, so the change happens when I restart the computer. I'm not sure why though, because I'm not sure why that 10gig always fills up in the first place.
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