FreeMemory
Your rating: Now say why...

(28) 2.107142857142857

Monitor and manage memory usage.   Free
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FreeMemory can increase your free memory with a simple click. It always monitors your memory usage in your menubar, and provides you with tons of extra features:
  • Menubar information can be easily customized: icon, 2D pie chart, monochrome chart, text, full info, font size selector
  • Usage details can be displayed with an elegant 3D pie chart
  • Customizable warning level and update interval
  • Smart Auto Free and Developer mode
We'd like to know how to improve our next version: contact us at Rocky Sand Studio
What's New
Version 1.8.3:
  • Minor bug fixes
Requirements
  • Intel, 64-bit processor
  • OS X 10.7 or later



MacUpdate - FreeMemory



FreeMemory User Discussion (Write a Review)
ver. 1.x:
(28)
Your rating: Now say why...
Overall:
(28)

sort: smiles | time
burypromote
-1

-1

FiggledeeW1327 reviewed on 26 Dec 2013
This app does exactly what it says for me.

Is my computer slowing down or beachballing? I check FreeMemory and RAM is usually down to 100 M or worse.

Use FreeMemory. Everything speeds up afterward.

As far as some criticisms:

"Apple must have programmed its software to use RAM efficiently"

That's an a priori assumption. It ignores empirical evidence. By all means give it a shot. It works for me.

"It freezes up my computer."

That's because it does its work by filling up and then releasing RAM.

"Just restart your computer."

For me, that means saving docs, maybe ejecting disk images. . . two to three minutes. This does its work in 20 to 30 seconds.

"You should just buy some RAM."

Well, yes. Until you do, this is a great 99 cent solution. Even after adding 4 G, I still use it.

Thanks for reading.
[Version 1.8.1]


burypromote
-1

+6

BillHicks reviewed on 19 Feb 2013
You could just have a link on the app's drop down that opens the terminal and then types "purge" in the terminal. Seriously though I like this app, easy to use for any type of user.
[Version 1.7.2]

1 Reply

burypromote
-3

+289
Cgc replied on 21 Feb 2013
It's unnecessary to purge memory just like it's unnecessary to run maintenance programs or defrag your HDD...OSX does everything for you...
burypromote
+1

+289

Cgc reviewed on 18 Feb 2013
Pretty sure OSX does a better job at "monitoring and managing memory usage" than your app does. The amount of free memory isn't important...need to monitor page outs to see if the amount of memory installed in your Mac is enough.
[Version 1.7.2]


burypromote
+1

+1

Mr.-Harley-T.-Davis reviewed on 21 Sep 2012
I have tested several types of apps against memory monitors. I can tell you that problems with this type of inactive or "dirty" page memory can mount when using SSD drives for scratch space. They are fast and access is great for running programs, but when trying to page out and then reload... ...Remember the old tape drives? An SSD works similar in the physical sense. Each nand block has to be searched in succession, then as each pathway to the next block is found, it has to search the block until it finds the right cell set. This slows down the reading of the paging files. So when it comes time to scan them, the system slows way down. Using an app like this one might help for systems that run a lot of apps all at once or systems with app managed caching, but if you are seeing it to the point that you must do it everyday, I would suggest a defrag, then replace your ram, then replace your mobo. I can see the possibility of needing this once to twice a month, clearing out the paging and repairing permissions if you do a lot of file changes in only a few areas, while leaving most files alone for longer periods. THe permissions are often repaired a little on the fly, as they degrade with magnetics, but with ssd drives this shouldn't be necessary, and therefore, you shouldn't have to do it everyday. You have Fragmentation. One of the things the comp must keep track of is the most recently accessed blocks on your drive so they can be read and re-read and written as changes are made. Faster systems use ranges of blocks that are more consistent. If they are not contiguous, their are more ranges to remember, and the ranges are smaller. Defrag, then rep perm, then purge and rep perm again, then see what happens. Once you defrag, start doing that once a year. So many people think it is only the memory that changes your speed, or the logic of the memory (virtual), but the speed you see is actually a combination of speeds of drives, memory, processor, screen response time, etc. Each factor of speed is affected by different environmental factors based on the type and durability, and most parts are partial to heat and dust, so clean things out. Afterward, you should get speed back more permanently, and yes, you may still want to purge every so often, but not everyday. You can severely damage the file system.
[Version 1.7]

1 Reply

burypromote
+1

+184
Prince_Isaac replied on 18 Feb 2013
@ Mr. Harley...
Thanks for your excellent collection of points above. I have one question, though: In the middle you suggest doing a defrag right after discussing how certain operations work when using SSDs. I've heard stories warning against defragging SSDs as this would reduce their life. I don't know enough one way or the other so would appreciate links or further advice.
burypromote
+2

+341

Xenophile reviewed on 21 Sep 2012
Snake oil.

If free memory is a problem, then buy more physical RAM. OS X's memory management is already highly optimized, this app will at best do nothing. Note that some users report system instability when using this snake oil remedy, so it appears to do worse than nothing.
[Version 1.6.2]


burypromote
-9

+10

Chris Habig reviewed on 30 May 2012
This app is completely unnecessary. The easiest way to free memory is to shut down the computer. Most computer memory loses its contents when power is removed.
[Version 1.6.3]


burypromote

+35
Pissnaround commented on 25 Mar 2012
I find it interesting that no one has questioned why Apple would make this available in the App Store. If it is as totally useless as most seem to believe, that leads me to wonder why Apple continues to allow it to be sold. Could they need the .99¢ that badly? Or do they really not care?
[Version 1.6.1]

1 Reply

burypromote
+2

+378
Lvdoc replied on 29 Jun 2012
I'd say they really do not care. I've chanced any number of apps from that store that leave much to be desired in terms of functionality, features, and support. Not everything there is bad, of course, but I've seen my share nonetheless. I think the philosophy of the MAS is that if the program appears to do no harm, it's fine with them.
burypromote
+5

+22

TeRRyZx reviewed on 18 Mar 2012
I bought this thinking that it would work. But after about a month of using it I find that it is CONSTANTLY locking my Mac up when it is attempting to *free* used memory. so I turned it off and my Mac is running MUCH better now. It was a cheap app but the only thing it did was to teach me that Apple has memory management down much better than a 3rd part app. This is a BIG FAIL!!!
[Version 1.6]


burypromote
-3

+1
Schmye-Bubbula commented on 18 Mar 2012
(Cross-posted from the FreeMemory Pro listing)

Completely failed memory management in Mac OSuX

"...OS X has a feature called inactive memory. This is memory that was recently used by an app you closed and can be quickly made to active memory if you resume to use that app. A nice concept, that fails miserably. OS X's documentation says, that this memory may be freed at any moment. However in practice, it just keeps on accumulating until you run out of free memory. In this case a sane option for the OS would be freeing the inactive memory. Instead the OS X decides to swap the inactive memory on the disk. So when running out of free memory and having a 1.5 gigabytes of inactive memory left, your OS starts paging the unused inactive memory to disk instead of freeing it for applications to use. Not only this causes your computer to slow down, it also is counter-intuitive in the terms of the original idea of inactive memory: when it's on disk, it definitely is not made active quickly.

"I managed to find out that this memory can be freed with combination of XCode's purge-command and repairing disk permissions. First usually freed around 200MB of memory while latter freed almost every bit of inactive memory. Eventually this became a daily routine. When arriving to work the first thing was to hit repair disk permissions button and do something else than actually use the computer for the next five to ten minutes. Sigh...."

http://dywypi.org/2012/02/back-on-linux.html
[Version 1.6.1]

10 Replies

burypromote
+1

+369
Nontroppo replied on 18 Mar 2012
Um, no. Read the developer docs, or just look at your inactive memory use over time and you'll see this person is utterly misinformed...
burypromote
-1

+1
Schmye-Bubbula replied on 18 Mar 2012
Um, yes. It doesn't do what the developer docs says it does, just as described in link. I've observed it myself. Yes, inactive decreases as well as increases over time, but immaterial to the fact that inactive still gets paged to disk — doesn't matter whether it's "only" modified inactive; *no* inactive should (defeats the purpose!). Watch the swap files pile up!... If it's a scam, then why does my excruciating sluggishness go away when running FreeMemory-type utilities (or purge in Terminal)? Without them, I'd have to go back to rebooting every time this happens.
burypromote
+1

+369
Nontroppo replied on 19 Mar 2012
If inactive is dirty, it will get paged to disk, that is exactly as it is supposed to do. I've never seen excessive Page outs unless they were genuinely needed (I'm at the limit of my physical memory use). Swap is allocated in larger chunks than the data that is written, do not look at the Swap used as an accurate indicator of what really is in the backing store.

Are you sure. I manage about 8 Mac Pros and several laptops in our lab, we run computational models of neural circuits, extensive data analysis in Matlab, generate scientific graphs in CS5, and run Parallels for some legacy software and have never seen lots of free/inactive memory yet lots of paging out. I see exaclty what I'd expect, and given the long history of hoax memory optimisers, FreeMemory is certainly no different in conception.
burypromote
-1

+1
Schmye-Bubbula replied on 19 Mar 2012
Yes, I'm sure. I've personally observed the undesirable behavior at least as far back as 10.4 Tiger.... Inactive should *never* be paged to disk, no matter what TheWormyFruit™'s docs say; to repeat, it defeats the purpose and the thrashing unnecessarily slows down the Mac.... Linux & other Unix-type OS apparently don't do this for the most part, it's all Apple arrogance... Some of the heavy-lifting things you described you do themselves may be purging inactive as you use them, similar to what FreeMemory-type utilities or repairing permissions do.... Nevertheless, it's not consistent & many Macs don't overtly experience it — sometimes there seems no rhyme or reason to it.... In any event, the acid test is that when one *does* chronically experience it, and purging inactive by any means (or rebooting to do so) restores robustness, I'm going to keep doing it, so I can get some work done instead of fighting the goddamned computer.
burypromote
+1

+369
Nontroppo replied on 20 Mar 2012
You are incorrect. Here is what happens in the Linux kernel:

"Pages of memory are either Free (available to allocate), Active (in use), or Inactive. Inactive pages of memory are either dirty or clean, depending on if it has been selected for removal yet or not. An inactive, dirty page is no longer in use, but is not yet available for re-use. The operating system must scan for dirty pages, and decide to deallocate them. After they have been guaranteed sync'd to disk, an inactive page my be “clean,” or ready for re-use."
http://www.linuxplanet.com/linuxplanet/print/6593

IF the inactive page is dirty, sync it to disk. Then free it.

And OS X:

"In Mac OS X, if an inactive page contains data that has not been written to the backing store recently, its contents must be paged out to disk before it can be placed on the free list. "
https://developer.apple.com/library/mac/#documentation/Performance/Conceptual/ManagingMemory/Articles/AboutMemory.html#//apple_ref/doc/uid/20001880-99406-TPXREF103

IF the inactive page is dirty, page it to disk. Then free it.

Countless highly trained computer science engineers have built the virtual memory system across multiple OSes in this way. Do you really think a single line command or some two-bit app developer[1] somehow can do something the most highly skilled (and in Apples case probably richly paid) CS engineers have failed to understand for years? Again, read The Memory Optimization Hoax by sysinternal engineer Mark Russinovitch (Windows VM is largely similar).

You probably have something seriously wrong with your software somewhere, it certainly isn't OS X / Linux VM memory subsystem, and I still doubt placebo purging is really helping.

----
[1] I contacted Rocky Sand some time ago and they told me they would put some reference to the criticisms of their software and a discussion of both sides of the memory optimisation debate on their page. They never did, their vaguely worded FAQ is useless. That smacks of hoax two bit software to me.
burypromote

+35
Pissnaround replied on 25 Mar 2012
I find it interesting that no one has questioned why Apple would make this available in the App Store. If it is as totally useless as most seem to believe, that leads me to wonder why Apple continues to allow it to be sold. Could they need the .99¢ that badly? Or do they really not care?
burypromote
+1

+12
Sieltris replied on 29 May 2012
Schmye Bubbula, I'm afraid you are wrong. Take a look at this screenshot of my book running Lion:
http://cl.ly/1s311X24280e2U1Q3A0Y

50 days uptime, zero page outs. There must be something wrong with your mac.
burypromote
-1

+1
Schmye-Bubbula replied on 29 May 2012
tavas, if you read through this thread carefully, you will see that your experience falls completely in accord with the symptoms as described: If you don't regularly bump the inactive memory red line, or if you run heavy duty RAM-intensive apps that in process invoke the native memory management routines which effectively do what manually running the Terminal "purge" command does, then you will not get the chronic spinning beach balls or virtual memory scratch files piling up.
This problem recently has been getting more widespread attention (although it harkens back years), such as over on Macintouch.com:
http://www.macintouch.com/readerreports/lion/topic4948-015.html
...and in "Something is Deeply Broken in OS X Memory Management":
http://workstuff.tumblr.com/post/20464780085/something-is-deeply-broken-in-os-x-memory-management
I think that even Nontroppo, who has had a long presence on this forum as a distinguished Mac service consultant, must slowly be coming to the realization that we have a real problem here.
burypromote
-1

+1
Schmye-Bubbula replied on 29 May 2012
Here's a fairly recent post that includes a YouTube video demonstrating one way to recapitulate the offending behavior on demand from over on the Mac OS X Hints Forums in the thread, "OS X prefers swapping over clearing inactive memory?"
http://hintsforums.macworld.com/showpost.php?p=679267&postcount=6
burypromote
+1

+369
Nontroppo replied on 01 Jun 2012
Most of the on-line debate is noise, not signal (due to most people not understanding what inactive memory is, the Apple forum 50+ page thread is a depressing list of anecdotal misapprehension, I couldn't make my way through it).

I couldn't reproduce the tar+bzip test, and the only person who seems to have a clear hypothesis (Perry Metzger) has no test case, just more anecdotal evidence. Irrespectively, purging is not the answer

With so many people with "problems" surely someone is smart enough to come up with a reproducible test case? OS X has ample tools to debug this...
burypromote
+6

+6

BadBadger reviewed on 17 Mar 2012
This is a completely useless program for Mac OS X. Freeing memory does not make sense - the system can handle himself much better.
[Version 1.6.1]


There are currently no troubleshooting comments. If you are experiencing a problem with this app, please post a comment.


+3

TomasDyo rated on 02 Nov 2012

[Version 1.7.1]



+3

Brady9 rated on 02 Nov 2012

[Version 1.7.1]



+9

Christa_1980 rated on 01 Jun 2012

[Version 1.6.3]



+1

nobody2011 rated on 28 May 2012

[Version 1.6.2]



+62

Morgan_Alex rated on 28 May 2012

[Version 1.6.2]



+10

Corlexis rated on 14 Mar 2012

[Version 1.6]



+55

MetroMrX rated on 03 Mar 2012

[Version 1.5.2]



+2

Fabio Milocco rated on 01 Mar 2012

[Version 1.5.2]



+855

Negritude rated on 30 Jan 2012

[Version 1.5.1]



+62

Nicolasd rated on 29 Jan 2012

[Version 1.5.1]


Downloads:34,708
Version Downloads:4,074
Type:Utilities : Optimizers
License:Free
Date:28 Dec 2013
Platform:Intel 64 / OS X
Price:Free0.00
Overall (Version 1.x):
Features:
Ease of Use:
Value:
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FreeMemory can increase your free memory with a simple click. It always monitors your memory usage in your menubar, and provides you with tons of extra features:
  • Menubar information can be easily customized: icon, 2D pie chart, monochrome chart, text, full info, font size selector
  • Usage details can be displayed with an elegant 3D pie chart
  • Customizable warning level and update interval
  • Smart Auto Free and Developer mode
We'd like to know how to improve our next version: contact us at Rocky Sand Studio http://www.rockysandstudio.com


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