iMac very slow

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Hi guys.

Ive been a long time Mac user and its very rare Ive ever had reason to complain or criticise... But! There is always a first time.

I have used my iMac for the same thing for 3+ years, and until recently I did not experience any problems whatsoever.

The basic problem is the iMac is running very very slow. For example, iTunes keeps buffering and it can take 2-3 minutes for a Safari web page to open, sometimes you have to press return 2 or 3 times to get it to open too.

I have been in Activity Monitor and I can pretty much see what is causing the problem, but I don't understand why the problem is there or how to fix it.

This is a screen shot of my Memory usage...

http://i48.photobucket.com/albums/f206/steve3664/ScreenShot2014-09-05at120416_zps96700fc6.png

Now you can see that Flash Player and Kernel_task are the biggest culprits. I have no idea what kernel_task is or why its using 434 MB of memory.

http://i48.photobucket.com/albums/f206/steve3664/ScreenShot2014-09-05at120654_zpsb810b0ea.png

This shows that the RAM is maxed.

So... I understand the issue... BUT how do I fix it, and why was it not a problem before? Seriously guys I use my Mac for the same thing.... and have done for over 3 years, and this issue is recent. I have never had memory problems before.

I hope someone can help me?

Thank you
 
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pigoo3

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The basic problem is the iMac is running very very slow. For example, iTunes keeps buffering and it can take 2-3 minutes for a Safari web page to open, sometimes you have to press return 2 or 3 times to get it to open too.

I have been in Activity Monitor and I can pretty much see what is causing the problem, but I don't understand why the problem is there or how to fix it.

Now you can see that Flash Player and Kernel_task are the biggest culprits. I have no idea what kernel_task is or why its using 434 MB of memory.

This shows that the RAM is maxed.

So... I understand the issue... BUT how do I fix it, and why was it not a problem before? Seriously guys I use my Mac for the same thing.... and have done for over 3 years, and this issue is recent. I have never had memory problems before.

I hope someone can help me?

I'm sorry to say it…but you don't understand the situation at all.:) The problem has nothing to do with Flash Player, nothing to do with the Kernel Task, nothing to do with the ram being maxed out.

The problem is the Swap File has gotten too large. And the simple way to solve it is to restart the computer. Then the Swap File will go from 1.81gig to zero!:)

Thanks for the photos…they helped.:)

- Nick
 
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Hi,

Yes the swap file is a "supposed" problem on the screen shot I posted. However, restarting the computer and having the Swap Used at 0 bytes makes no/little difference to the problem.

iTunes still buffers and web pages take an eon to load.

So yes, I understand why you jumped on that problem, but I had already tried it with no success.

This is why I am thinking RAM memory usage.

However, I stress.... that I use the iMac for nothing more or less than I used it for 3 months ago. This problem has only started to occur in the last 2 months.

Right now Physical Memory is 4.00 GB, and Memory Used is 3.99 GB.

Only thing I can see where a problem lies. But I do not understand why.

A solution may well be to buy additional RAM memory.... but I have had this computer for 2 and three quarter years with no need for additional RAM.
 

chscag

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I agree that your iMac is likely struggling with memory. There's no reason why you can't add more memory as it's easy to do and not expensive. Saying that you didn't need to do so for the last 2 and ¾ years means nothing. Things expand very fast in the world of computing; fall behind, and then catch up. ;)
 

pigoo3

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So yes, I understand why you jumped on that problem, but I had already tried it with no success.

If you already tried this…then you should have told us.;) All I can say is…I see a screenshot showing a swap file that's 1.81 gig in size (not zero). And I do know (whether this is the root problem or not)…that a swap file this large never helps.;)

This is why I am thinking RAM memory usage.

How about rebooting the computer…then taking some screenshots of Activity Monitor after a fresh reboot…and no apps. opened.

Right now Physical Memory is 4.00 GB, and Memory Used is 3.99 GB.

Remember. Mavericks manages ram differently than with previous OS versions. So the ram numbers you see in Mavericks with Activity Monitor...may not always have the same meaning/logic as they did with previous OS's.

For example…with Mavericks there's the "Memory Pressure" statistic. The memory pressure is represented by three colors (green, amber, and red). In your screenshot…it shows memory pressure as amber. So not as good a "green"…but not as bad as "red". Give this a read for more info:

OS X Mavericks: About Activity Monitor

One last thing. How full is your hard drive (gigs used & gigs free)?

- Nick
 
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Hi Nick, Thanks for all your help so far.

Firstly, I have done what I believe to be the basics... so yes, I have rebooted, I have checked internet, I have turned off all other devices linked to my WiFi just to see if there was any improvement.

The only device affected is the iMac.

I have taken some more screen shots, and taking on board what you said about Mavericks and how it manages RAM... well I'm even more confused now as to what it could possibly be.

Firstly, Here's disk space...

http://i48.photobucket.com/albums/f206/steve3664/ScreenShot2014-09-06at150610_zps5b9a2492.png

No issues there!

Secondly, this is Activity Monitor immediately after reboot.

http://i48.photobucket.com/albums/f206/steve3664/ScreenShot2014-09-05at120416_zps96700fc6.png

Thirdly, this is Activity Monitor after all apps opened and Safari running.

http://i48.photobucket.com/albums/f206/steve3664/ScreenShot2014-09-06at150257_zps13fb4f56.png

^ This is what you might describe as "normal daily running" not much else is ever opened or run.

Now if you are right, and I'm sure you are, Memory is not a problem as the pressure gauge is green on this occasion.

It does sometimes go to amber after prolonged use, but I have never seen it red.

However, it is at this point that iTunes buffers and web pages take a long while to load. Internet generally is very very slow, and opening apps on the computer itself can sometimes take a while too with the coloured wheel spinning being a normal situation.

Really, looking at that data, and having read up about Mavericks and how it manages RAM... my computer should be ultra quick. It is anything but.

It used to be...

Any ideas?
 

pigoo3

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Ok…thanks again for all that info!:)

Two things:

1. Are you saying that the problems mostly seem to be internet related? If so…why not try connecting the iMac via ethernet cable rather than WiFi. Maybe there's something wrong with the iMac WiFi hardware.

2. Get rid of any antivirus apps. I saw an antivirus app in one of the Activity Monitor images. First…you don't need an antivirus app on a Mac. 2nd…many Antivirus apps on Mac's only accomplish one thing…and that's they slow down the computer.

- Nick
 
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Hey well yes you were right.... It was the hard drive!

It was only when I tried to download Yosemite that the problem identified itself.

Hard drive was a landfill job. Bought the new Retina iMac now so problem solved!

Thank you to everyone for their help.
 

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