1 2 Previous Next 25 Replies Latest reply: Apr 2, 2014 12:49 PM by understories
Luis Sequeira1 Level 5 Level 5 (5,625 points)

I think I may have found a way to prevent FCP from gobbling up all available memory (and bring my mac to its knees).

 

 

The idea came to me from a post by Tony Reidsma  in this thread: https://discussions.apple.com/thread/3770230?start=0&tstart=0

He pointed to this page regarding memory usage in FCP X and Motion: http://bradbell.tv/filmmaking/improving-ram-performance-in-final-cut-pro-x/

 

The above page,mentions a preference setting that exists in Motion but "not in FCP X" - the setting for a "cache percentage".

This is supposed to determine how much of the available memory Motion should retain for caching content (or so I gather).

 

Sure enough, this preference is not there visibly in FCP X, but since FCP X and Motion share a common foundation, I thought it might be there anyway.

So after looking into the plist files in XCode, I found the name of this preference setting and used the defaults command in Terminal.

I have been throwing everything at it for a day now and it seems to be working well, so I thought I'd share.

 

Here is the relevant defaults command (NOTE: use this in Terminal when FCP X is NOT running):

 

        defaults write com.apple.FinalCut OZPreferenceManager::CachePercentage -int 20

 

(this seems leave free about 20% of the ram available when FCP X starts; I have experimented with different values, and apparently the higher the number, the more free memory is untouched)

 

I have 15 applications running in MacBook Pro (with 8GB Ram), for hours, and no memory problems (and no need to "purge"). And FCP X and all other applications have not shown any of the slowdowns typical of low memory situations.

 

NOTE: While I have not experienced any negative effects, I have no internal knowledge of the software and no guarantee that this is effective or harmless.

One can revert the above setting by typing (or pasting) the following in Terminal (again, with FCP X NOT running):

 

    defaults delete com.apple.FinalCut OZPreferenceManager::CachePercentage

 

If any of you try this and it does or does not work for you, I'd appreciate if you post your results back here.


MacBook Pro, Mac OS X (10.7.3), 17", Early 2010
  • 1. Re: A possible solution to FCP X memory problems - it is working for me so far
    shippo_uk Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)

    Sounds interesting. Anyone currently trying this?

  • 2. Re: A possible solution to FCP X memory problems - it is working for me so far
    andynick Level 5 Level 5 (4,840 points)

    This sounds great but to be honest, my RAM problems seem to have disappeared since FCP X 10.0.3.

     

    Having said that, my projects have all been short ones recently - and I always move the events and projects I'm not working on to temporary folders.

     

    I'll certainly keep a note of the Terminal code and use it if I get RAM problems again - but at the moment, FCP X is working near perfectly for me (using Lion 10.7.3).

     

    Thanks Luis.

    Andy

  • 3. Re: A possible solution to FCP X memory problems - it is working for me so far
    Ian R. Brown Level 6 Level 6 (17,900 points)

    Very interesting and if it works safely you would think Apple would incorporate some control in the preferences.

     

    I don't know whether this is the same thing which I have in FCP 7 in Final Cut Pro>System Settings>Memory & Cache  .  .  .  .  .  I always left it on 100%.

     

    memory allocation.jpg

  • 4. Re: A possible solution to FCP X memory problems - it is working for me so far
    Ian R. Brown Level 6 Level 6 (17,900 points)

    Looking again at my FCP 7 Memory & Cache window reminded me of a slight curiosity. My Application Memory Usage is stated as 100% (2560MB) yet my computer has 4GB RAM.

     

    Why the lower figure or is that what is left after other essential processes use some?

     

    Message was edited by: Ian R. Brown

  • 5. Re: A possible solution to FCP X memory problems - it is working for me so far
    innocentius Level 4 Level 4 (1,490 points)

    Very interesting topic, but to risky for me at the moment. I say as Andy I have not memory issues at the moment with Snow Leopard. I am not sure if it Snow or just the fact I make a very short projects.

  • 6. Re: A possible solution to FCP X memory problems - it is working for me so far
    SSalviche Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Hey Luis, and everyone else.

     

    I just tried your terminal script, and it has completely cured the sluggish problem with FCPX. Thank you, thank you , thank you!!.

     

    I am working in a pretty large project, and now is flowing like a champ. Even skimmin is on point.

     

     

    The project is 60 GB in size and I didnt create optimized media or used Proxy, so is working out of the RAW data, and boy must I say is flowing.

     

     

    Again thank you dude.

     

     

    PS: to you all out there, if you jump in a large project, I found that by making compund clip over compound clip helps the speed of the whole project. Example: I am braking down scenes in to compound clips, and portions of the scenes in to more compund clips, that has created a fast flow to go in an out of.

     

     

     

    Macbook Pro 13 2009,

    8GB ram / 750GB HDD

    FCPX 10.0.0

  • 7. Re: A possible solution to FCP X memory problems - it is working for me so far
    Barry Wallack1 Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)

    I am running Mt. Lion and when I type in the Command I get that -INT is an illegal argument. Can you help?

  • 8. Re: A possible solution to FCP X memory problems - it is working for me so far
    Luis Sequeira1 Level 5 Level 5 (5,625 points)

    I tried the command in Mountain Lion and it gave me no errors.

    But I have to say that I haven't had this preference set for months and I don't think that it is necessary now.

    if you want to try it, though, I suggest you copy and paste from above. Chances are you mistyped something.

  • 9. Re: A possible solution to FCP X memory problems - it is working for me so far
    Barry Wallack1 Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)

    Thanks

     

    I did use Copy and this time it worked. I have one other question. The slow performance of both Final Cut Pro and my entire computer seems to occur ONLY when I have Background processing checked - turned on. As long as I have it un- checked , it seems I can run as long as I want with no problems. Once I turn it on however, performance gradually degrades ( only if I try and actually use the computer ). What I have been doing is creating my movie and when I am ready to stop working I turn on Background Processing and just let the rendering take place while I am away from the machine. When I return, everything is rendered and I turn off Background Processing and continue to use the computer. Can you help explain this behavior of Final Cut Pro? Also, while Pro was rendering, I checked my Activity Monitor Program and it showed Final Cut Pro using 145% of the Processor. How can an application use more then 100% of something?

  • 10. Re: A possible solution to FCP X memory problems - it is working for me so far
    Wild Giles Level 2 Level 2 (335 points)

    It's been pretty much agreed universally that background rendering should be turned off for better performance. As far as the memory problem that FCP X had, that this thread began with, it has been cured for now since at least 10.0.4. There were a lot of posts back in January, Februaury pleading for a fix from apple as it really was a pain for large projects kinda like the Soundtrack pro issue. In Soundtrack Pro once your Ram usage aproached 2GB which would happen with any project over 20 minutes you where in the land of constant crashes and hanges. This is what I thought made Soundtrack Pro really stink.

     

     

    There is a 100% for each core(virtual core) that your CPU has. A 4 core(8 virtual) can have up to 800% for all programs being used. I have 8core(16 virtual) mac and when using qmaster with compressor up to 16 vitual core are being used simultanously at 100%. This is where a mac pro tower really kicks *** over imac and macbook pro's in my world of video edinting.

  • 11. Re: A possible solution to FCP X memory problems - it is working for me so far
    Just.Apple Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    I am going to try turning off auto rendering.

     

    My mid 2011 iMac with 12 gbs of ram with FCPX and mountain lion is blessed with the spinning beach ball with almost every mouse move.

     

    Freeing up more space on the internal drive.  I use external drives for editing and have all events and projects out of the normal folders to help speed the flow.

  • 12. Re: A possible solution to FCP X memory problems - it is working for me so far
    pietrociao Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I'm having the very same issue and I have everything updated, I bought 16Gb of RAM but it only takes more time. I bought Event Manager X in order to load just the projects I'm using, same problem.

     

    I've tried your method, but unfortunatelly the bug is still there.. it gets to 99% and everything stops working

    PLEASE let me know if you have any other solution.

     

    Have a great day

  • 13. Re: A possible solution to FCP X memory problems - it is working for me so far
    pietrociao Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Unfortunately it's not been cured for all users, in my case, even with the command in the terminal I still experience the same problem, even after updating to 16GB of ram

  • 14. Re: A possible solution to FCP X memory problems - it is working for me so far
    Jonnynm22 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    If anyone is stil having this problem, or is uncomfortable testing out the line of code in terminal, then I may have a solution. I downloaded the app "free memory" and it allows you to clear your RAM when it gets used up. It fixed ALL of my problems with Final Cut Pro X. I had to restart my computer every 20 min because FCPX would gobble up all the RAM and make the computer turn into molasses.

     

    I went ahead and paid $1 to get "Free Memory PRO" which will clear your memory automatically based on an amount of free memory that you would like it to keep, which you can set up in the preferences. Give it a shot and see if it works for you!

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