11 Replies Latest reply: Jun 22, 2012 4:26 PM by dt35
alex_75 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

Hi,

 

I'm having lot of issues with virtual machines (both Parallels and VMWare)

since having update to lion 10.7.4.

 

I make myself:

 

If I switch on Mac OS a run any vitrual machine software

I can run Windows XP and Ubuntu at same time with no issue and very fluently.

 

But, if I switch on Mac OS and start using Eclipse, Safari 5.2 and other production stuff and

want to use vmware or paralles

they become unusable even if I quit all the tasks ans "purge" memory.

(eg: if i click start button on windows I have to wait seconds before the start menu pops up)

 

Any Idea?

 

I have MacBook Pro 13 Unibody mid 2009 with SSD Drive AND 4GB of RAM

and I had no such issues with Lion 10.7.3


mac book pro 13
  • 1. Re: Lion 10.7.4 issues with Virtual Machines
    Shootist007 Level 6 Level 6 (16,640 points)

    You do not have enough RAM to run what you have running. Even though you purge the memory OS X likes to hold onto a lot of it.

     

    I have 8GBs of RAM and would not even try to run programs in OS X (especially Apple Programs like safari, Memory hog) and 2 separate virtual machines at the same time, let alone running 2 different VM software programs, VMware and Parallels, at the same time with a VM OS loaded into each.

     

    Your page outs have to be very large. Which will slow down the whole system.

  • 2. Re: Lion 10.7.4 issues with Virtual Machines
    etresoft Level 7 Level 7 (24,265 points)

    alex_75 wrote:

     

    I had no such issues with Lion 10.7.3

    Sorry, but I don't buy that. You don't have enough RAM to run even a single VM, Safari, and Eclipse. A virtual machine is very hard on RAM because it is always running and can't release its RAM for other processes. Get 8 GB of RAM and you'll be fine.

  • 3. Re: Lion 10.7.4 issues with Virtual Machines
    alex_75 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Maybe I didn't explain my issue well:

     

    If I start Mac Os X and, suddenly after that, I start windows Xp on VMWare it works perfectly.

    Than I can open safari and even eclipse.

     

    If I use first safari+eclipse and after, say, one hour or two I want to start a virtual machine, the virtual machine doesn't work even if I close all the applications.

    With all the application closed but safari I have almost 2,5GB of free memory

     

     

    With such a memory situation I think that I can run a single virtual machine but, if I want to run VMWare, I have to completely restart My Mac. This issue never occurred until 10.7.4

  • 4. Re: Lion 10.7.4 issues with Virtual Machines
    Shootist007 Level 6 Level 6 (16,640 points)

    No you explained yourself, the situation, fairly well.

     

     

    You do not have enough RAM to run all that.

  • 5. Re: Lion 10.7.4 issues with Virtual Machines
    alex_75 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Never mind,

    I don't have to sell anything.

    I've been using VMWare fision for a while and I now that it can run it with my system configuration.

    I'll try to get back to 10.7.3

  • 6. Re: Lion 10.7.4 issues with Virtual Machines
    alex_75 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    by the way, in this very moment I'm running windows XP on VMWare adn using safari to write this post.

    1.13 GB of free memory

  • 7. Re: Lion 10.7.4 issues with Virtual Machines
    etresoft Level 7 Level 7 (24,265 points)

    alex_75 wrote:

     

    This issue never occurred until 10.7.4

    You just didn't notice it for some reason. A virtual machine is pretty special. When it wants 1 GB of RAM, it needs a full 1 GB of RAM, all in one chunk. Because the virtual machine can access any part of that RAM, it doesn't work well with other programs. The operating system can't strategically give up parts of that RAM to other software as it needs it.

     

    When you first start up, you have a large chunk of free RAM and your virtual machine runs well. Your other programs don't need to access big chunks like that and don't need to hand on to it as much. Consequently, then can run fine if started after the VM. If those other programs have been running for a while, they may have fragmented your memory. Even if they have quit, your memory is still fragmented because of operating sytem caches. In this situtation, the VM can't get the huge, continuous chunk that it needs to run optimally. Therefore, it runs sub-optimally.

     

    Lion runs fine in 4 GB of RAM. Lion runs adequately in even 2 GB of RAM. Virtual machines change that equation drastically. In 4 GB of RAM you can run a VM and maybe one moderate program. To do more than that, you just need more RAM. It is something like $ 50-75.

  • 8. Re: Lion 10.7.4 issues with Virtual Machines
    alex_75 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I'm aware of the particular nature of virtual machines.

     

    As you wrote before, virtual mchines need big chunks of contigous RAM and

    2,5 GB of free RAM wuold have enough ammount of such a RAM.

    Maybe there is some issue in the way 10.7.4, in some perticolar situations, handle the process of freeing RAM.

     

    What you can't accept, and I don't know why, is that before the update to 10.7.4 everithing was fine.

    I don't know why you don't beleve me.

    I just worte here to see if someone could give any advice to do further invesigations.

    I know the price of upgrading RAM but I think that this would be a "microsoft like" solution

    and I'm trying to find what service or task or whatever is creating this issue.

  • 9. Re: Lion 10.7.4 issues with Virtual Machines
    etresoft Level 7 Level 7 (24,265 points)

     

    alex_75 wrote:

     

    As you wrote before, virtual mchines need big chunks of contigous RAM and

    2,5 GB of free RAM wuold have enough ammount of such a RAM.

     

    No, it wouldn't. 2.5 GB of free RAM could consist of 5 chunks of 500 MB of contiguous RAM, separated by RAM allocated by other processes.

     

    Here is a hypothetical memory map. Assume a is application memory, o is operating system memory, and - is free memory.

    boot:           oooo-------------- run app1:    ooooaao-----------

    run app2:    ooooaaoaaaaaaoo---

    quit app1:   oooo---aaaaaaoo---

     

    Maybe there is some issue in the way 10.7.4, in some perticolar situations, handle the process of freeing RAM.

     

    What you can't accept, and I don't know why, is that before the update to 10.7.4 everithing was fine.

    I don't know why you don't beleve me.

    There is nothing in the 10.7.4 update description that mentions a re-write of the virtual memory system. http://support.apple.com/kb/HT5167

     

    I just worte here to see if someone could give any advice to do further invesigations.

    I know the price of upgrading RAM but I think that this would be a "microsoft like" solution

    and I'm trying to find what service or task or whatever is creating this issue.

    The only thing "Microsoft like" about buying more RAM is the fact that you need it to run your Microsoft operating systems. It has been this way as long as I can remember. I upgraded my MacBook to 4 GB RAM in 2008 just so I could run Windows more easily.

     

    Perhaps you have your virtual memory settings too high. Depending on what you are doing in the VM, you may not need the default settings. XP will run low-intensity tasks with a 500 MB VM size. It will run just about anything in 1 GB. Linux should run fine in the same range too.

  • 10. Re: Lion 10.7.4 issues with Virtual Machines
    alex_75 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    After a break, I found the reason of my VMWare/Parallels Desktop issue:

    It was related nor Mac OS 10.7.4 neither to a lack of memory.

    It was related to an hard disk failure.

    I have to hard disks installed in my MacBook Pro and the second one had some melfunctioning in some random situations.

    I just removed this HD with the one I had installed before and everything went all right.

  • 11. Re: Lion 10.7.4 issues with Virtual Machines
    dt35 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Be aware - since 10.7.3 there has been an issue with memory allocation.

    The is a program in the app store (free) called FreeMemory. (I'm not affiliated with the dev team)

    I have it installed and it works great. I sometimes have to release memory often.

     

    Active memory is the issue.

     

    Having used hypervisors for years, I can say.. On 4 gb ram with Tiger OSX I had plenty to run XP, and 2 ubuntu servers (Paralels 3 & 4) - without X windows running both having dedicated 512 mb ram and Dreamweaver, Firefox and Photoshop without issue.

    So even with your diagnosis of a failing HD I needed to throw that out there. You are not alone.