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OS X - Operating System General OS operation information and support

Is this an OS or hardware problem?


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Mark F

 
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Lately my iMac occasionally (about once or twice a day) slows down to the point that I cannot do anything at all. The internal hard disk just keeps trundling for a while, sometimes as long as ten minutes. I took a screen shot of the Activity MOnitor while this is happening but do not really understand what I am looking at and do not see how to attach it anyway, Help or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

I'm running OS 10.6.8 on an iMac. RAM is maxed out at 4G. THe 500G hard disk has 95G free.

THanks.

Mark
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pigoo3

 
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With the info so far...it could still be hardware or software. There is always the possibility that a hard drive could be failing (hardware)...or it could be something software/OS related.

First question...how often do you reboot/restart the computer?

- 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
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That screen shot of Activity Monitor could have been very helpful.

- 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
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Mark F

 
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I reboot approximately weekly and have done so since I bought the iMac a few years back.

Is there a way to upload an attachment? I do not see it.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark F View Post
I reboot approximately weekly and have done so since I bought the iMac a few years back.

Is there a way to upload an attachment? I do not see it.
The info from Activity Monitor I'm looking for...is the size of the "Swap File" and "Page-Outs".

- 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
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Mark F

 
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Nick,

Sorry but I do not see those captions. I have the settings at "Active Processes" and Disk Activity.

Mark
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark F View Post
Sorry but I do not see those captions. I have the settings at "Active Processes" and Disk Activity.
Click on the "System Memory" tab at the bottom of the window.

- 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
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Mark F

 
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Ok, thanks. I will do that the next time this happens which will likely be tomorrow.

Mark
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Randy B. Singer

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark F View Post
Lately my iMac occasionally (about once or twice a day) slows down to the point that I cannot do anything at all. The internal hard disk just keeps trundling for a while, sometimes as long as ten minutes.
Lots more info would help.

Have you noticed if it does this at *the exact same time* each day?

Are you using TimeMachine?

Does it clear up if you immediately restart your Mac?

How big is your hard drive, and how full is it?

Have you very recently updated your Mac's OS to a newer version?

Randy B. Singer

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Randy B. Singer View Post
Have you noticed if it does this at *the exact same time* each day?

Are you using TimeMachine?
Could be onto something here.

- 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
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Another question that I just thought of. I should have asked it first:

Do you have anti-virus software installed?

If so, use the developer's uninstaller program to uninstall it (it is unlikely that you can uninstall it completely just by dragging its icon to the Trash), and see if things get better. More than likely they will.

Randy B. Singer

Mac OS X Routine Maintenance http://www.macattorney.com/ts.html
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Mark F

 
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I've been waiting for it to happen today and so far not yet. It's not regular, happening at different times of the day. When it happens I will grab a screen shot.

Time machine does slow things down but this happens when TM is not running (the clock icon on top is not spinning).

I have a 500 gig hard disk with 98 gigs free. Anti-virus software is not installed on the Mac side. I run XP under Pareallels and do have Norton installed there, but this has been the case since I bought the iMac. The slowdown occurs both on the Mac and Parallels side and when it occurs when I'm in Parallels I can see that XP is not using the hard disk. There is a little icon on the bottom of the Parallels screen that shows when it is accessing the hard disk.

At first I thought I might have a key logging virus and someone was accessing my hard disk so I turned Airport off. Sometimes this would cure the problem in a minute or two but not always so I do not think that is the issue. Rebooting does seem to help for a while but within a half hour or hour it starts again.

I still use Snow Leopard since my iMac is maxed out at 4gigs of ram and would not do well with Maverick. Probably time for a newer machine but that is not in the budget until maybe the Fall.

Thanks to all for your help.

Mark
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark F View Post
I've been waiting for it to happen today and so far not yet. It's not regular, happening at different times of the day. When it happens I will grab a screen shot.
The Activity Monitor info I needed does not need this sporatic slow down you're experiencing to occur. The Activity Monitor info (swap file & page outs)...is something that builds & builds & builds over time.

So a single slow down event is not what triggers anything related to the Activity Monitor info I was seeking. Hours & hours & hours of use is what this info is dependent on.

This is why I was expecting to get this info yesterday. So we can move on if this is or isn't the source of the issue.

- 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
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How old is the hard drive as with it not being consistent with slowdown or associated with any particular app I would suspect a hard drive on its way out.
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Mark F

 
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Sorry Nick. Obviously I do not really understand this stuff. Anyway, the "page Outs" is 12.20 gig and the "Swap Used" is 3.34 gig.

OSXX, the drive is almost 6 years old, the same age as the iMac.

Mark
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