8gb RAM in an M1...an error I've not seen in years

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Was doing some fairly mundane work on my M1 MBP earlier today-typing up a document in Word and with Firefox running and nothing else unusual running in the background(Apple software Mail and Messages, which were eating a surprising amount of RAM, plus Slack and Excel).

I pulled up Spotlight to do some quick math, and noticed it lagging BADLY-press a key and it takes a second to register bad.

Right after that, this popped up

Screen Shot 2021-11-24 at 12.15.32 PM.jpg


I quite literally have NEVER seen an "Out of Application Memory" error on a Mac made in the last 15 years. In fact I could tell you the times I've seen it-once was a few years back on a Quadra 700 with 20mb(yes, megabytes) of RAM with an old install of System 7.5 and a hard drive crammed so full it had no space for virtual memory. The second was running OS X 10.4 on a PowerMacintosh 8600 with 128mb of RAM-the latter is comically low specs for an OS as modern as 10.4...

Further to my evidence that 8gb isn't enough. Again, I'm not exactly doing anything outside what you might consider a normal workload to get this message...
 
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Rm requirements are pretty ridiculous for basic stuff now, web browsers do way too much high level client side stuff anymore it's ridiculous, this is my Windows 10 machine and it's currently using just under 16GBs, all I have open is a few tabs in edge and like a basic photo editor with a few things open in it, a few ms paint windows, solitaire, and a spreadsheet and a powerpoint.
 
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My MBA is a '13 model with just 4gb of RAM and have gotten this warning a handful of times. I don't use/have any Office applications on this either, so it's usually just a runaway web browser. I get that it can happen but my complain to Apple would be, pop up this warning sooner. Like you experienced, by the time it warns you, the system is probably so unstable that it's not usable. A couple of times it's happened to me, even "CMD+Q" is unresponsive so all I can do while looking at that warning box is power it off. Mouse (trackpad) was useless.
 
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Is it possible Firefox has a memory leak? 4.17GB of memory seems excessive for some mundane tasks.

I can run Windows 11 in Parallels and do all my normal stuff and I’ve never seen that on my 16GB M1 MacBook Pro.
 
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Was doing some fairly mundane work on my M1 MBP earlier today-typing up a document in Word and with Firefox running and nothing else unusual running in the background(Apple software Mail and Messages, which were eating a surprising amount of RAM, plus Slack and Excel).

I pulled up Spotlight to do some quick math, and noticed it lagging BADLY-press a key and it takes a second to register bad.

Right after that, this popped up

View attachment 78989

I quite literally have NEVER seen an "Out of Application Memory" error on a Mac made in the last 15 years. In fact I could tell you the times I've seen it-once was a few years back on a Quadra 700 with 20mb(yes, megabytes) of RAM with an old install of System 7.5 and a hard drive crammed so full it had no space for virtual memory. The second was running OS X 10.4 on a PowerMacintosh 8600 with 128mb of RAM-the latter is comically low specs for an OS as modern as 10.4...

Further to my evidence that 8gb isn't enough. Again, I'm not exactly doing anything outside what you might consider a normal workload to get this message...
I'd be curious how much RAM Safari uses with the same tabs open. I'm a big Firefox fan and use it in Windows but I wonder if it's poorly optimized on the Apple OS.
 
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Is it possible Firefox has a memory leak? 4.17GB of memory seems excessive for some mundane tasks.
FWIW, running Firefox on Big Sur and it's using just 590 mb. I only have (2) tabs open at the moment too. Let me open some more....

(8) tabs open and it only went up to 640 mb. I'm guessing in the OP's case it was a runaway website that caused that.
 
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I think it's safe to say that Firefox was our culprit, here. If you had a large number of tabs open doing RAM-intensive stuff I suppose that is going to happen; but I doubt you were doing that. Sounds like a memory leak or rogue/ malicious web site or plugin or something. I would have killed Firefox and re-opened it, possibly even restoring the session.
 
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Rm requirements are pretty ridiculous for basic stuff now, web browsers do way too much high level client side stuff anymore it's ridiculous, this is my Windows 10 machine and it's currently using just under 16GBs, all I have open is a few tabs in edge and like a basic photo editor with a few things open in it, a few ms paint windows, solitaire, and a spreadsheet and a powerpoint.
I would expect/ hope that a good portion of that RAM is cache which can be dropped when needed by an application. Unused RAM is wasted RAM.
 

bunnspecial

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BTW, on Firefox-

Yes, it has memory issues.

I've recently started using a plug-in that suspends unused tabs after a period of time, something that DRAMATICALLY reduces its memory footprint. Unfortunately, though, it can only do so much.

This computer replaced a 2012 MBP that had 16gb RAM. Even doing things like running Lightroom in the background with similar Firefox useage, I NEVER saw this error. Lightroom in the background grinds my M1 to a hault. I did/do have an SSD in my 2012, but swapping over SATA(even with a good drive-it has a Samsung EVO 850) is much, much slower than in the M1 SOC.

My finger is itching over the "Buy" button on a 16" M1 Pro/1TB/32gb
 
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Did you happen to do this, to your save your HD and now you are are using more ram to save your disk? You then can also change the memory use too. I pulled back Firefox disk caching and SSL disk caching on my M1. I have 16 GB ram as I saw this issue playing out months ago and decided to up my ram when buying my new M1 IMac.

 
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JHZR2

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That is crazy they're building a M1 with only 8 GB. But also it doesn't matter how much RAM you have, in its default configuration Firefox will eventually take it all.
Is it possible Firefox has a memory leak? 4.17GB of memory seems excessive for some mundane tasks.

I can run Windows 11 in Parallels and do all my normal stuff and I’ve never seen that on my 16GB M1 MacBook Pro.

I still run my 2010 C2D MacBook Air, which has a 128GB SSD and 4GB Ram. As soon as Firefox opens two tabs, all the Ram is used.

My other newer Mac is a 2013 i7 MBP with 16GB of Ram. Even when processing and transferring high resolution full frame sensor (45MP?) photos, it never used up the RAM. I’ve not seen Firefox with multiple tabs consume it all either.

But I agree that browsers are pigs and can be a major user.
 
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I've recently started using a plug-in that suspends unused tabs after a period of time,
What's the name of this plugin?

BTW, Firefox is supposed to be doing this by default, but I guess it doesn't work all that well.

 

bunnspecial

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What's the name of this plugin?

BTW, Firefox is supposed to be doing this by default, but I guess it doesn't work all that well.

"Auto Tab Discard"

BTW, just killed a few plug-ins I don't make use of. Down now to µBlock, Facebook Container, Javascript Disable, and the one above.
 
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Massive memory leaks are a well publicized issue with macOS Monterey.





 
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...Further to my evidence that 8gb isn't enough. Again, I'm not exactly doing anything outside what you might consider a normal workload to get this message...
Mac users with 32gb are reporting receiving "out of memory" alerts.
 
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This is how phone / tab is different than general computer: you expect app to be mindful of the resources or else they cannot be on the app store. In general computer you will expect none of that and users will be responsible for it. In the old days it would just be slow but with the way OSX compress the ram and swap them into SSD they are now going to have real durability consequence, rather than just being slowed down.

I expect Apple to have better sense than putting out 8GB on a new Mac these days, they shouldn't be competing with eMachine or Walmart house brand.
 
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I expect Apple to have better sense than putting out 8GB on a new Mac these days, they shouldn't be competing with eMachine or Walmart house brand.
It's not like 8GB is the only option. You can definitely get more if you pay for it.

Not sure what you guys are running on your machines that take up so much memory. I use Chrome, and never have any issues on my 2014 Macbook Air with 4gb RAM, and my work machine is a 2020 MacBook pro with 16GB Ram. The work machine has Monterey OS and it's always running several tabs open at once. I'd stop using Firefox.
 
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Do you really need more than 8000MB RAM to check your email and use a browser for online forums and online purchases?
 
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