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kernel_task consumes a lot of RAM in early 2011 MBP, sometimes Finder too

171272 Views 215 Replies Latest reply: Mar 17, 2014 9:46 AM by Attila RSS
  • iReese728 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    i know this post is old but im having the same problem and my imac is not even 2mos old (late 2012 21.5 base model). Right now my RAM is reading 36 MB free, really! and making my mac run slow. The only apps open is safari, finder, activity monitor (AM). AM states kernal_task is using most of it, oper 800MB. umm im stumped, a premium computer acting like that anyway my fix for this is to download app 'Freememory' its free and keeps track a live track of RAM on menu bar next to date whenever my memory gets to low hit free memory and walla. But for a premium computer i shouldnt have to do that a brandnew computer at that, however it doesnt happen often and i do love my imac but my goodness thats seriously ******** any way its a easy fix.

  • iReese728 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Actually guys i just found out what the culprit was (for me at least) if it helps anyone. It was Safari!! I left safari open all day instead of quiting, and after i quit safari my RAM increased immediately by like 5GB...well now i know and that does makes a lot of sense.

  • edgarperez Calculating status...

    I admit i did not read the whole thread.  Just wanted to add that my kernel_task is not using a lot of cpu but starts up with 1 gb real memory used on my mba with 8 gb.  by mid day it gets to 3 gb.  something is not right.  I had not noticed ths until recently.  I add some stuff recently like started using time machine and chenged my mind and disabled it, installed parrellels 8 and a few other apps from macupdate bundle and alfred 2.  Something that time frame is making this get out of hand.  I need my memory back

  • Brunni Calculating status...

    I was going to say that this probably has something to do with the video card, because you need to share memory in order to use the two GPUs (and even one actually; some system RAM is still often used as a backup). But then I'm surprised to see people to mention the same problem on MacBook Air's.

     

    On my MBA (Core 2 Duo) it's behaving ok: it doesn't overuse inactive memory and kernel task uses a reasonable amount of memory (I don't have to complain anyway, it's got an SSD and in general running pretty fast).

    .Screen Shot 2013-04-15 at 10.47.52 PM.png

    On my MBP at work however, kernel_task is constantly using around 800~1200 Meg, and 3~4 Gig of inactive memory even though I have only 8 Gigs of RAM. Sometimes it's fine, and you can see that this allocated memory is used wisely, but sometimes the system is like completely lost and it's close to unusable (sometimes you may even be better issuing a purge than waiting for it to fix itself). I'm interested by the reason for this huge difference.

  • mpanta Calculating status...

    The problem is not related to the video card, or at least it's not confined to machines with separate video. I've the same problem on my MBP with intel integrated video.

  • mpanta Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    edgarperez wrote:

     

    I admit i did not read the whole thread.  Just wanted to add that my kernel_task is not using a lot of cpu but starts up with 1 gb real memory used on my mba with 8 gb.  by mid day it gets to 3 gb.  something is not right.  I had not noticed ths until recently.  I add some stuff recently like started using time machine and chenged my mind and disabled it, installed parrellels 8 and a few other apps from macupdate bundle and alfred 2.  Something that time frame is making this get out of hand.  I need my memory back

     

    this made me think: I also happen to have Alfred (though 1.4).

    Maybe this could be related to some third party extension, or driver?

     

    I've installed quite a few: KeyRemap4MacBook, BetterTouchTool, MagicPrefs, Alfred, Dropbox, Evernote, TotalTerminal, TotalFinder, TotalSpaces.

     

    I've noticed that Dropbox ***** a lot of CPU, hence I almost always keep it in suspended state.

     

    I'm also using an external monitor connected through mini dp -> DVI adapter.

     

    Which are the ones that you use? If we list our 3rd party extensions, maybe we could find something in common to everyone who is experiencing the problem...

  • edgarperez Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    mpanta, not sure if there is an easy way to do this and I don't remeber all i have installed but am using alfred2, dropbox, better touch tools, palua, google drive, xtrafinder, istatmenus, mac update, installed time machine but turned it off though I turned it but still looks like it might be doing something becasue it is showing status of backup as delayed, vpn, imessage, xmarks for safari, apptrap, lastpass, evernote, belkin router helper

     

     

    I know when i start it in safe mode, the kernel is only about 300mb

  • Rajat Madan Calculating status...

    i m having the same problem 2013-04-25 09.18.43 am.pngi have 0 apps open n it takes abt 850 - 950 mb Ram , is there any known solution to this ?

  • Iamawesome997 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I have the problem too, except even worse.

    I have bjango's iStat Menus 4 an dit constantly reports up to 1.2 GB of RAM use for Kernal_task.

    What is it for?

  • Un1x_man Calculating status...

    I have a mid 2012 MBP with 8GB ram and it uses almost one GB for kernel task it is normal but if you feel worried about it you can type purge in termal it will free up unused ram in all running processes and is safe. lastly it could be bad coding in some apps try updating all your apps and mac os if you see any available updates.

  • joan19 Calculating status...

    My miny use 1.75GB after start real mem.

  • iAstroboy Calculating status...

    Mac Pro 2008 8gb Kernel_task was consuming 1.7gb total memory used was 5.23gb , I just install app Memory Booster Ram Optimizer is a fee app love it  App Store . Drop memory use to 2.76gb total free memory 5.11gb.

     

    My macbook 2008 runs faster with this app , try it.

     

     

    Memory Booster Ram Optimizer

     

    =)

  • Nearly-Normal Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    iAstroboy wrote:

     

    Mac Pro 2008 8gb Kernel_task was consuming 1.7gb total memory used was 5.23gb , I just install app Memory Booster Ram Optimizer is a fee app love it  App Store . Drop memory use to 2.76gb total free memory 5.11gb.

     

    My macbook 2008 runs faster with this app , try it.

     

     

    Memory Booster Ram Optimizer

     

    =)

     

     

    Been there, done that, didn't find it useful at all. The exact same thing can be done with one Terminal command, instead of having yet another app running.

     

    More info here:

    http://thetechreviewer.com/software/memory-booster-ram-optimizer-mac-app-review/

  • Nobletoad Calculating status...

    Not sure if my fix will apply to anyone else, but I'd been having this exact problem for some time.... kernel task sucking up massive amounts of memory and dragging performance down. Accidentally discovered it was my own darn fault. I run a MacBook Pro with dual monitors and an external keyboard. The actual laptop sits off to the side and I use the external keyboard and monitor as my primary workspace. At some point, I purchased a large Wacom tablet. When not in use, I had been sitting it on top of the MacBook Pro's keyboard and trackpad thinking it was a convenience place. What I didn't realize is that this was causing the MBP to run hot. Apparently it "breathes" to a certain extent through the keyboard surface.

     

    I have tested this extensively - block the keyboard on the MBP, wait five minutes and the kernal task spikes. Unblock the keyboard, wait five minutes and the kernel task goes idle again.

     

    So for those of you still fighting this problem, consider that your machine may be overheating due to external factors such as blocked fans, junk stacked on top, boxed in by books, sun hitting it through a window etc. Find a way to cool it down and the problem may simply go away.

  • llamaswill Calculating status...

    1. Spotlight

    2. Type terminal

    3. Type purge

    4. Press enter

    5. Profit.

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