8 Replies Latest reply: Dec 17, 2009 4:13 AM by Klaus1
vendt Level 1 (0 points)
I have an alias of an application (Warblade) located on my desktop. Recently it has been jumping to the right side of the screen (same area a new file would end up). I have it located in the same area as several other alias icons. Ive had this comp 4 years running OS X 10.4.* from original installation.

I have noticed icons randomly moving in the past (but not often enough for concern). though this one icon has been moving a lot lately, enough to be very annoying. I sometimes spot it disappear from left side of screen and reappear on the right side. There is no apparent pattern or logic as to why it is doing this. Latest incident happened while I was typing a rtf in textedit. Most of the time I just notice it missing where it should be and find it in the right portion of the screen somewhere.

This has been happening nearly every day at least once for a couple weeks now.
Anyone seen or heard of this happening?

powerbook G4 17", Mac OS X (10.4.11), 17" model
  • vendt Level 1 (0 points)
    I tried moving the icon to a different spot on the desktop, and it moved yet again w/in 24 hrs. Only seems to be happening with the one icon.
  • BDAqua Level 10 (121,655 points)
    How many icons do you gave on the Desktop?
  • vendt Level 1 (0 points)
    I deleted the icon that was causing problems, and I new one began doing the same thing.
    I believe it is happening with the last alphabetical icon.

    Orignal icon doing this started with "w";
    i deleted it and noticed icon with "s" began doing same thing.
    this point I created a new file beginning with "z"
    within minutes the zzz.txt was moved same as the others.

    I don't know if this is relevant but it may give some insight:
    I have been compiling .cpp files with g++ in terminal, often I notice the file disappear for a few seconds then reappear(I think it is the same one that moves, but not certain atm).
    I have [compiling,fixing,compiling] code in this way for the past hour (during this time is when I noticed and tested the alphabetical theory).
  • BDAqua Level 10 (121,655 points)
    I'm pondering with this new info, but you really shouldn't be using the Desktop to store files, it's a special folder that consumes 2-3 times the resources of your Mac.
  • Klaus1 Level 8 (47,600 points)
    Performance tip: Keep the Desktop clutter-free (empty, if possible)

    Mac OS X's Desktop is the de facto location for downloaded files, and for many users, in-progress works that will either be organized later or deleted altogether. The desktop can also be gluttonous, however, becoming a catch-all for files that linger indefinitely.

    Unfortunately - aside from the effect of disarray it creates - keeping dozens or hundreds of files on the Desktop can significantly degrade performance. Not necessarily because the system is sluggish with regard to rendering the icons on the desktop and storing them in memory persistently (which may be true in some cases), but more likely because keeping an excessive number of items on the Desktop can cause the windowserver process to generate reams of logfiles, which obviously draws resources away from other system tasks. Each of your icons on your desktop is stored as a window in the window server, not as an alias. The more you have stored, the more strain it puts on the window server. Check your desktop for unnecessary icons and clear them out.

    Keeping as few items as possible on the Desktop can prove a surprisingly effective performance boon. Even creating a single folder on your Desktop and placing all current and future clutter inside, then logging out and back in can provide an immediately noticeable speed boost, particularly for the Finder.

    And it is why Apple invented 'Stacks' for Leopard.

    Here is Apple's take on the subject:

  • vendt Level 1 (0 points)
    Hmm, I didn't realize all this, I have gotten quite used to organizing things on the desktop. and I haven't noticed any apparent performance issues, but I'll test into it.
    Are there any similar performance issues that arise from loading up the dock?(currently I have ~18)
  • BDAqua Level 10 (121,655 points)
    I currently have 80 in the Dock, no problem.
  • Klaus1 Level 8 (47,600 points)
    No, the aliases in the Dock do not produce a problem.