6 Replies Latest reply: Apr 20, 2012 4:17 AM by mkorban
mkorban Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

I just purchase an iMac which was an open box item (only $60 cheaper) and noticed that powering up the system I would sometimes see the progress bar during the apple logo boot up. Once the system was finally up, I found the performance very slow so I check the activity monitor and saw that 2GB of RAM was wired! Meaning half my memory was required just to run the o/s.  I would then reboot and everything would run fine (wired memory was only at 560MB). I should make clear that I would have this issue maybe every 3rd bootup (after system was shutdown)

After seeing this a few more times, I reseated the ram, still no luck. I then formatted the HDD and reinstalled Lion OSX…still having the same issue.I then conclude there was something wrong with the chipset, either on the motherboard, video, RAM etc. So I took the MAC back to best buy and explained the situation. Because I have apple care they replaced my iMAC with a brand new system (un-open box)!

Took home my new MAC and guess what my first bootup, I saw the progress bar and the wired memory was at 2.2GB!!! I then thought it was my outlet, replaced the power outlet in my house ran a volt meter to make sure there was no spikes, dipps etc. I also test the outlet while booting my old computer to make sure the voltage never dipped while power was being drawn. Every checked out to be fine.


Why do I see this progress bar and see high memory usage every 3rd or 4th boot up?

Is there bug or tweak I’m missing?

My old MAC NEVER had ANY issues (lucky if I had to use ctrl, option esc 5 times in the 5yrs I had the computer).

vEry ****** off at the moment.

iMac, Mac OS X (10.7)
  • 1. Re: Progress bar during bootup on new system
    BGreg Level 6 Level 6 (17,500 points)

    Does your iMac recognize that it has 4GB of installed memory? If so, you're fine. What OS X uses for different memory types changes based on system demand.  


    See this Apple note on memory usage: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1342


    And see this if you want even more detail on OS X memory usage: https://developer.apple.com/library/mac/#documentation/Performance/Conceptual/Ma nagingMemory/Articles/AboutMemory.html

  • 2. Re: Progress bar during bootup on new system
    Linc Davis Level 10 Level 10 (118,040 points)

    The progress bar means that the directory of the startup volume was corrupt and a repair was being attempted. If it happens repeatedly, the drive is failing, or you have some other hardware fault. Make a "Genius" appointment at an Apple Store to have the machine tested. Back up all data before you go.

  • 3. Re: Progress bar during bootup on new system
    mkorban Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    First off thanks for your replies!!!


    To Linc


    I find it odd that two differenrt systems one being brand new (issue on first boot up) would have the h/w issues.


    TO Bgreg


    Yes it sees 4GB of memory but the system runs very slowly when 2 GB of memory is wired (take 60 seconds to open activity monitor...with no applications install just o/s). There is noway the o/s requires half my memory to run.


    thanks again guys...still plugging away.

  • 4. Re: Progress bar during bootup on new system
    BGreg Level 6 Level 6 (17,500 points)

    We know that the minimum to run Lion is 2GB, and that in many cases the performance is really poor, which is fixed by moving to 4GB. If you read the material provided regarding memory usage, wired memory contains system loaded modules that can't be swapped to disk. Seeing 2GB of wired memory under Lion would be consistent with poor performance others have experienced.  Given that Lion is new in many respects, I'm not sure I'd conclude there is no way the operating system requires 2GB to run.


    I would be inclined to look elsewhere in the system to solve slow opening apps. Have you checked to see if the system you have has a1TB Seagate drive that was recalled by Apple?  http://www.apple.com/support/imac-harddrive/

  • 5. Re: Progress bar during bootup on new system
    mkorban Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    nope mine is the 500GB drive. I will read your other links you supplied in your earlier message.


    Back to the memory issue...


    When thecomputer boots up normal (no progress bar) the wired memory being used is 560MB and the system is screaming fast. It's when I get the progress bar (which only goes 1/4 of the way then boots) do  I fine the memory usage high before i even open anything. I should mention that the screen flickers (intermitted)  when opening new windows when the wired memory is high.


    Also wired memory means that memory cannot be freed up as it's being used the kernel just to run basic functions required by the o/s. If Lion requires 2GB of dedicated memory just to run basic process, then lion is a poorly written o/s (worst then windows vista).  I know this is not the case as I only experince this issue once every 3rd boot...it something else. I wonder if this remember the last application and open it on next boot up is an issue .i.e memory leak of some sort...grapping a straws.

  • 6. Re: Progress bar during bootup on new system
    mkorban Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    don't know whats happen but the issue has never appeared again. I did change the setting on how many applications to open on next boot but I highly doubt that was the problem. I think the new outlet did fix my problem! as the old outlet had tons of drywall dust inside of it....guess it was a bad contact.



    still think lion memory management could be better, hopefully mountain lion will be more stream line in it's code\design (less bloatware)...but I'm a happy camper and loving my new system.!!!


    thank for the replies!