Previous 1 2 Next 22 Replies Latest reply: Dec 27, 2012 7:42 AM by Stephen Johnson
Stephen Johnson Level 1 Level 1 (35 points)

I just upgraded to 10.6.3 and then 10.6.8 on my Mac Mini. With 10.6.3 Activity Monitor started showing total of 3 GB of RAM instead of 4 GB as System Profile does show. I ran Rember and all tests passed. It showed 4 GB total memory and 1690 MB available memory which seems consistent with AM's Free memory.

Any ideas why the system seems to "see" (System Profiler) all the memory but not be using it (AM)?

 

Stephen


Mac mini, Mac OS X (10.6.8), 1.83Ghz, 4 GB RAM
  • Stephen Johnson Level 1 Level 1 (35 points)

    Here is a screen shot of AM and System Profiler:

    memory.jpg

    Check out the VM size, too. 144 GB. My harddrive is not big enough for that much VM!

  • BobHarris Level 6 Level 6 (14,710 points)

    Chances are your Mac mini can ONLY use 3 of the 4GB you have installed.  My 1.83GHz Core 2 Duo Mac mini has two 2GB DIMMs installed, HOWEVER, I can ONLY use 3GB of that RAM.

     

    My guess is System Profiler is telling you the physical RAM installed, but Activity Monitor is telling you want the operating system is able to see.

     

    This is ONLY a guess, as maybe your Mac mini is different from mine.

  • WZZZ Level 6 Level 6 (12,640 points)

    I have a related question about the pie chart.

     

    Here's mine:

     

    Screen shot 2012-09-14 at 11.10.07 AM.png

     

    I have 12GB installed. Free at 9.72 + Used at  2.28 adds up to 12GB.

     

    But adding up Wired at 957.4MB, Active at 754.1MB, and Inactive at 632.4MB comes to 2.3GB (rounded). Adding that to the pie chart figure of 11.75 gives a total of 14.05GB, which isn't possible. What does the pie chart figure at 11.75GB represent? It can't be the 12GB minus the Wired, Active and Inactive either, since that would be much less than 11.75. And if it's supposed to be the total of installed Memory, why the missing .25GB?

  • Jeffrey Jones2 Level 6 Level 6 (8,605 points)

    Check out the VM size, too. 144 GB. My harddrive is not big enough for that much VM!

    VM size has nothing to do with your disk size. Don't confuse it with swap space -- it's only using 57 MB of swap space. VM size is pretty much an abstract concept that you should ignore. 144 GB is unremarkable.

  • Stephen Johnson Level 1 Level 1 (35 points)

    BobHarris wrote:

     

    Chances are your Mac mini can ONLY use 3 of the 4GB you have installed.  My 1.83GHz Core 2 Duo Mac mini has two 2GB DIMMs installed, HOWEVER, I can ONLY use 3GB of that RAM.

     

    My guess is System Profiler is telling you the physical RAM installed, but Activity Monitor is telling you want the operating system is able to see.

     

    This is ONLY a guess, as maybe your Mac mini is different from mine.

     

    But when I boot back into 10.5.8, all 4GB are there:

     

    AM10.5.8.jpg

     

    Something changed in 10.6. Maybe I need to do a fresh install or go on and upgrade to 10.7.

  • baltwo Level 9 Level 9 (61,835 points)

    WZZZ wrote:

    I have a related question about the pie chart.

     

    I have 12GB installed. Free at 9.72 + Used at  2.28 adds up to 12GB.

     

    But adding up Wired at 957.4MB, Active at 754.1MB, and Inactive at 632.4MB comes to 2.3GB (rounded). Adding that to the pie chart figure of 11.75 gives a total of 14.05GB, which isn't possible. What does the pie chart figure at 11.75GB represent? It can't be the 12GB minus the Wired, Active and Inactive either, since that would be much less than 11.75. And if it's supposed to be the total of installed Memory, why the missing .25GB?

    Wired+Active+Inactive = Used. Thus, 9.72+2.28 ≃ 9.7.2+2.3 ≃ 12. The 11.75 is a mucked up AM reading. Check the memory via About this Mac->More info. Mine shows exactly 12 GB.

     

    Screen shot 2012-09-15 at 2.09.29 PM.png

  • WZZZ Level 6 Level 6 (12,640 points)

    System Profiler sees all 12GB. I was concerned I might be in the same boat as the OP, losing some off the top. Either that or AM is messed up. It's always showing 11.75, even on a restart. But, interestingly, Free and Used always adds up to 12.

     

    I can see what the breakdown is later using top, and if it agrees with AM. I might trust top to be more accurate.

  • baltwo Level 9 Level 9 (61,835 points)

    top shows:

     

    PhysMem: 696M wired, 1871M active, 1309M inactive, 3876M used, 8405M free.

     

    I didn't add them up, being too lazy and since AM's always been accurate.

  • WZZZ Level 6 Level 6 (12,640 points)

    I'm supposing if Free and Used always adds up to 12, I can disregard the pie chart.

  • baltwo Level 9 Level 9 (61,835 points)

    That's what I'd do. However, you could nuke the activity monitor plist file and relaunch it.

  • WZZZ Level 6 Level 6 (12,640 points)

    AM plist nuked, no difference. I have now filed this under useless dead-end investigations of glitches and anomalies.

  • baltwo Level 9 Level 9 (61,835 points)

    thumbsup.gif

  • Stephen Johnson Level 1 Level 1 (35 points)

    fresh install of 10.6.3 has the same behavior, upgrade to 10.7.4 still inaccurate; different than WZZZ's case my 1GB is missing in both the pie chart and the Free + Used and does not seem to be available for use by the system, though System Profiler continues to show all 4 GB.

    I use Virtual PC and it has a slider bar to set the RAM for the PC. It shows a little more than 3.5 GB available though above 3 GB it is highlighted in yellow, as if caution about trying to use it. So I set it to a little more than 3GB, started V PC and watched its usage climb in Activity Monitor. When it reached about 3GB the whole Mac OSX locked.

    Here is a related issue and the poster's solution was to switch the riser cards around:

    https://discussions.apple.com/message/11022205?tstart=0#11022205

    Maybe I need to swap my memory cards around.

  • Stephen Johnson Level 1 Level 1 (35 points)

    Well, I finally decided to go on and search for the specs on my Mini, even though all 4 GB work under 10.5.8. Here it is:

    http://support.apple.com/kb/SP7

     

    "1GB of 667MHz DDR2 SDRAM (PC2-5300) on two SO-DIMMs; supports up to 2GB"

     

    I bought it in 10/2007. Even for that long ago, it seems like 2GB would have been quite limiting. I upgraded to 4GB soon after I got it. So, I suppose that I get anything above 2GB is a bonus.

    Seems strange and sad to me but I suppose it is true.

     

    Still will try swapping the cards around... maybe I can get the newer OS and all 4GB back.

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