Previous 1 2 3 Next 130 Replies Latest reply: Jun 12, 2014 8:27 PM by VsiaBOBO Branched to a new discussion.
ninja9578 Level 1 Level 1 (60 points)

I have a single Safari tab open, and a subprocess called Safari Web Content is taking 1.5GB of ram. 

 

I don't think there is any flash or anything on the page: http://explosm.net/comics/1949/

 

Why does Safari need so much memory?  My Macbook only has 2GB in total, so everything is crawling.  Is this a bug, or by design?  I really like Safari and I don't want to have to switch to Chromium, but if Safari doesn't work well on 2GB machines, I guess I have no choice

 

Version 5.1 (7534.48.3) on Lion


MacBook Pro, Mac OS X (10.6.8)
  • CT Level 6 Level 6 (17,365 points)

    (1) Safari is indeed a RAM PIG.

     

    (2) 2 GB RAM, being the minimum allowed, is really not enough for good performance.

  • ninja9578 Level 1 Level 1 (60 points)

    Actually, after searching the web, it appears to be a well known memory leak.  Why is it taking so long for Apple to fix it?  I can usually track down a memory leak within a few hours, and really obscure ones within a few days, especially with Instruments or Valgrind.  I'm using Chrome now as the default browser, but I would love to go back to Safari when this is fixed.

  • thomas_r. Level 7 Level 7 (30,545 points)

    Don't be too sure.  Lots of people like to blame memory leaks for things when there isn't really a memory leak.  I'm not seeing reports of a memory leak in Safari 5.1 anywhere reputable...  just in user forums.

     

    As CT says, 2 GB is the minimum required to run Lion, and it really should be 4 GB.  Web browsing is a memory-heavy activity, and Lion requires more RAM than Snow Leopard did, squeezing your memory tighter.  Upgrade to 4 GB of RAM minimum if you can.  8 GB would be even better, if your machine can support it.

  • ninja9578 Level 1 Level 1 (60 points)

    Being a software engineer, I know a memory leak's behavior when I see it. 

     

    Try this: Open up a dozen tabs in safari, all different sites.  Look at your memory.  Close all but one tab, look at your memory again.  See how it barely dropped at all?  That is indicitive behavior of a memory leak.

     

    Another experiment is to browse the web for a few minutes, and graph the memory consumed.  It will always just keep going up, which means that something that was put in ram on each page, is staying in RAM, even when navigated away.  This is classic memory leak behavior.

     

    Since no leaks are detected by Instruments, it is most likely something being stored in a cache and never being removed, which isn't a true "memory leak" meaning orphaned blocks, but a leak bug none-the-less.

  • dsa.me Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    This is not a memory leak. Running the browser in 32-bit mode solves the problems: http://mytech.dsa.me/en/2011/08/27/safari-5-1-memory-leak-solve/

     

    You will be magically brought in the old good days when the grass was greener.

  • Whitehill Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I already run it in 32-bit mode and have done so for about three months - the problem appeared sometime during that period and persists.  If these are the good old days, the grass is brown.

  • lreinstein Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I have been having the same symptoms for months ... and I do not run Lion (yet).  I have 4GB on my macbook pro and when I have safari open for a few hours my available memory goes down to nearly nothing. 

     

    I dont get what the "web content " is but it grows and grows to nearly 1.5GB or more at times.   A friend of mine runs same version (5.1) and does NOT have this problem (he is using 64bit)..  in fact, he does NOT have a "web content" process ... nonte to be found.

     

    My only fix now is to shut down safari and start it up again every few hours .  very annoying.

     

    any thoughts?

     

    L

  • Roy Levien Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)

    Just stop Safari Web Content in Activity Monitor. You can leave Safari open and your pages will refresh on their own.

  • Paul Lima Level 1 Level 1 (90 points)

    Making Safari open in 32 Bit mode seems to not be an option with Lion, and killing Safari Web Content is a very temporary solution; minutes later it is back and growning.  I have 8 GB on my MacBook Pro and have seen over 2 GB for Safari + Safari Web Content.  Seems like a bug or poor design to me.

  • Michelasso Level 1 Level 1 (80 points)

    dsa.me wrote:

     

    This is not a memory leak. Running the browser in 32-bit mode solves the problems: http://mytech.dsa.me/en/2011/08/27/safari-5-1-memory-leak-solve/

     

    You will be magically brought in the old good days when the grass was greener.

    I don't understand why many people keep posting that link. If one looks at the Activity Monitor picture the memory usage is not that good. 1GB total for running Safari out of 3.75GB RAM isn't really a a great deal. Sure, it depends on how many tabs the guy had opened during the day.

     

    Anyway, running Safari in 32 bit mode doesn't change much. Safari is simply not releasing the memory for the old pages. As it has been said it is not a proper memory leak because Safari seems to be aware it's retaining that memory, but it is still annoying nonetheless.

  • dsa.me Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Would you like to call the name of the other browser what runs for more than 24 hours and stays below 1GB? I definitely will use it.

  • Michelasso Level 1 Level 1 (80 points)

    dsa.me wrote:

     

    Would you like to call the name of the other browser what runs for more than 24 hours and stays below 1GB? I definitely will use it.

     

    Safari 5.05 in Snow Leopard. A dozen tabs varying, 6-800 MB. Not after 24 hours only, after 2 weeks. I just closed the MacBook lid when not using it.

     

    A couple of hours after installing Lion the first thing I've got has been a page out thrashing. So much that I wrote a message to a friend of mine asking if he was getting the same. He said everything was fine. Disabling AdBlock improved the mem usage (not a problem in SL), but it still gets pretty high.

  • woodmeister50 Level 5 Level 5 (4,340 points)

    Safari IS a memory pig.  Only been surfing news pages

    and this site for about an hour, memory usage already

    greater than 500 meg, and climbing!

  • ninja9578 Level 1 Level 1 (60 points)

    @dsa.me

    Safari before Lion, Chromium, even Interent Explorer running on the PC next to me isn't taking nearly that much memory and it's been open for a week.  Safari 5 on Mac is being outperformed by IE9 on Win7, sad.

     

     

     

    If Safari Web Content is really just the cache, then Apple engineers should be smart enough to use a multilayered cache, which performs much faster, and doesn't take up nearly the same amount of RAM as a flat cache.

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