Hacker News new | past | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login
Memory leaks are crippling my M1 MacBook Pro (macworld.com)
782 points by miles 19 days ago | hide | past | favorite | 727 comments

I've been having some sort of severe performance issue in one form or another since Mojave/Catalina or so with a 2017 MBP and a 2020 M1 Mac Mini.

The symptoms is always generally poor performance after the system has been running a while (4h to a week, varies), usually with WindowServer using CPU cycles non-stop and UI that felt choppy across all programs.

This seemed to happen frequently after "opening many files", like doing some recompiling with Xcode for a few hours, or indexing a large volume with Spotlight. Rebooting helps temporarily.

Today I realized that data read/written since boot was about 1TB in a few hours on a brand new OS install, and I traced this back to the com.apple.Safari.History process. Somehow having bookmarks and previously using Safari 15.x caused a huge amount of I/O that wouldn't stop - the solution was to remove all bookmarks and reading list items. Performance was immediately back to normal, no reboot needed.

So just logging in with your iCloud id, you could be "importing" whatever performance problem you're having on a new install.

I recommend you reboot and take a look at your disk I/O stats - maybe this will help someone!

Do you run your laptop on non—native resolution? Or an external monitor with a non-native resolution?

I'm runnign on 2018 MBP, 16GB RAM + 4k external monitor. I experienced the same type of issues a couple of months back — high WindowServer CPU, mega choppy UI after a few days of use. Initially thought it was Safari, but it kept happening with other browsers as well. Researched it a bit and found a thread where someone suggested running both the laptop and the monitor on native resolution. Haven't had any problems since doing that. WindowServer sits at about 10% CPU and ~2GB RAM, current uptime 10 days.

I think I had the same problem as you (similar hw and setup). Do you have a discrete GPU? If so check the link below out. For me, this behavior was due to OSX flip-flopping between discrete and internal GPU. Once I set it to discrete all the time (I'm always plugged in) the problem went away.


Seems to me a different issue than what people are complaining about atm... but what do i know, might be one and the same.

Edit: very weird... Looks like this setting was reverted for me. I just updated from 11.? to 12.0.1, so I wonder if the installer undid some of my changes. No performance issues, but I've literally just my computer on for the first time after the upgrade.

Nope, I just have an integrated Intel GPU.

I'm also pretty much always plugged in. It's likely that the issue was manifesting before switching to a 4k monitor, but after switching the issue became unbearable. E.g I'd wait 2-3s to switch between windows or desktops. Running both screens on native resolutions and I'm switching between windows near-instantly.


:( Sorry to hear that... I know it must be so incredibly frustrating!

Sounds like it isn't an issue of flip/flopping between discrete and integrated GPU then... must just be the integrated GPU and its ability to deal with non-native resolutions.

IIRC, when the M1 first came out, there were a bunch of people saying their SSDs were being worn out super quickly, citing SMART statistics. Perhaps this safari process was the culprit?

> Perhaps this safari process was the culprit?

No, for many people it was Rosetta apps.

BTW, Apple totally lied when they said they "fixed it" in an update and it was only a "reporting issue". It's not fixed, and it was absolutely f'ing not a reporting issue. People's SSDs have already failed because of this, and obviously they're soldered.

> People's SSDs have already failed because of this, and obviously they're soldered.

Any links to more info about this? I’ve had my eye on a 16” Pro with an M1 Max for a couple weeks now but want to make sure it won’t have issues like this.

I haven't actually seen any reports of SSDs actually dying. Can you provide some links? SSDs dying in less than a year of typical use is a huge deal.


I don't see any reports but there is evidence that should the soldered on SSD fail the entire device is borked short of board level repair.

I haven't seen any conclusive evidence one way or the other.

wow Safari is the IE5 of browsers now, having to do so many work arounds like we used to have to do with IE5 and now its killing hardware that you can't even replace.

Chrome is IE of browsers now. 20+ years ago nobody cared about non-IE, today nobody cares about non-Chrome.

Chrome is the IE of browsers with respect to being the dominant player approaching monopoly status.

Safari is the IE of browsers with respect to being buggy and behind on features with a slower release schedule.

IE was both and more extreme on both issues.

It’s only “behind” relative to Chrome, the dominant browser which more or less sets the standards these days. Calling Safari “behind” is judging browsers by how similar to Chrome they are.

Also Firefox and even Edge when the IE version was being developed. They've also refused to implement features which would bring web apps in line with the the capabilities of native iOS apps (things like push notifications, offline support with data that doesn't get cleared every 7 days).

IE never killed hardware. It kept legacy Enterprise technologie alive ( eg. ActiveX )

Unsure whether it's Safari related, but it was solved on a regular macOS update. I didn't recall any specific Safari update, but I might miss it.

Thanks for this tip. I’ve had a similar problem occasionally and this gives me an idea for some things to check.

Yes I've seen something similar. WindowServer taking up all the memory.

In one case I also had it crash while I was out, with every open program opened several times on the dock. I didn't do this and in fact macOS doesn't let you do this. Everything was hanging completely so I had to turn it off and on again :)

But this kind of thing does not instill a lot of confidence

> in fact macOS doesn't let you do this

See open(1), in particular the -n flag.

Yes, noticed this some time ago with WindowServer taking all my CPU usage but only twice so far for this year I think so it was okay. When it occurs every day then I will start to worry then

Have you looked at Keychain items as well? It seems to go very slow for me, and I wonder if that’s part of some similar-sounding slowdown I have.

Quitting Safari seems to resolve the slowness, but not always.

SafaribookmarkSync, Cloudd, along with Content Cache has been problematic for years. Especially if you have huge number of Tabs and Bookmarks that is being synced across devices.

Along with iCloud syncing for one reason or another have relatively higher probability of being messed up during update, and you end up with a scenario where something is to probably synced and it keeps trying it over and over again.

I know you’re humble bragging with Lunar but I’ll bite.

Thanks for such a quality app.

Im only using it to fully turn off my built-in monitor while working in clamshell mode and then manually setting the external’s brightness.

So no sync mode (and not even sunset sunrise)

But solved my problems nicely and no more reaching out to my external monitor’s buttons in Narnia

If I’ll keep using it I’ll make sure to caffeinate you ;)

Count me in as another WindowServer casualty. Can't believe it's 2021 and MacOS can't handle a 4K external monitor without grinding to a halt...

I just ordered the M1 Max with 64GB RAM because I'm constantly getting the "Your system has run out of application memory." popup while working on Lunar[1] in Xcode.

Every time this happens, Xcode uses about 4GB of RAM (probably because of the monolithic UI storyboard of Lunar) but it should still leave enough memory for my other non-memory hungry apps.

But then I open Activity Monitor and I see WindowServer using ~80GB of memory [2]

The only remedy is either `killall WindowServer` or a full reboot.

I've been using an M1 MacBook Pro and Monterey since the first developer beta but this only became an issue in the last 2 months or so.

[1] https://github.com/alin23/Lunar

[2] https://cln.sh/CfEL6u

I’ve noticed the high memory usage of WindowServer on my Mac at work. To the point where I have to kill it, which is a pain.

This is an intel Mac though. I haven’t seen it on my M1 at home.

My god. I made it down to here in the thread wondering what all these people were doing with Windows Server.

Another anecdata: My old 2015 8GB MBP also has the same problem; unbearably slow now. The M1 MBA (also 8gb) doesn't have this problem.

Being serious: Do you have Chrome installed? I have been following this story for a while and nothing seems to be coming out of it:



I do not use Chrome and my windowserver is using 3GB after a month of uptime. I feel this is not a M1/Apple issue to be honest.

> sluggish performance of a 2015 iMac since practically the day we bought it

I wish I had found this website when my MacBook Pro was still alive, maybe Chrome actually killed it after all. The low performance was so bad I moved to Windows 10 ("the last Windows system" they said), but after it notified my system can be upgraded to 11 I quickly moved to Ubuntu. I'm currently experiencing a few hiccups and reduced them with some memory tweaks, but still the experience is much better than Mac and Windows.

I too have the problem with WindowServer although for me it seems to happen with just regular usage. I have not rebooted in 48 days, and currently it is using 10GB RAM (I have a MacBook Air with 16GB). I have seen some people claim it has to do with using a display scaling setting other than the default (I use 1280x800).

How many windows do you have open? 10 GB of RAM is a very large amount for WindowServer to use.

Yes, I agree, but it is a memory leak. It doesn’t START at 10GB. Also closing windows does not help much at all.

To answer your question, I have a total of 73 windows open at the moment. 11 of them are from applications with a single window open, 8 are from iTerm, and 54 are from Sublime Text. I am aware that is quite a lot for Sublime, but that is just how I use it.

Regardless, I just quit Sublime Text, and the memory usage only dropped to 8.9GB still absurdly high for having 19 windows open.

I have been seeing all of the above problems on my 16GB M1 MacBook Air for probably at least 6 months now.

WindowServer has consistently been the main culprit but occasionally other apps like to chip in where they can too. Often that means there isn’t one single process which I can kill to reclaim enough memory to continue working without being promoted again or having MacOS forcibly close all my applications on me. As a result, reboots appear to be the only real solution for me.

Interestingly though, in the past few weeks I have been working with similar numbers of open Sublime Text windows as yourself and I can confirm that since then, ST4 has been a regular and serious offender when it comes to memory usage in Activity Monitor.

Yes, it is. Can you try running this and seeing what it reports: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=29147886?

Thanks. Output is here if you have any ideas.


Hmm, that is interesting. You have lots of unaccounted for memory, which is not normal at all. Would you happen to have the full footprint output? Trying to see how the 200K individual VM_ALLOCATE regions are distributed in side.

That's what I find amazing with Apple users.

They sell you a very expensive machine that doesn't work.

Your reaction?

Buy a more expensive one from the same provider!

It’s really something, isn’t it? I’ve never regretted my decision to switch from macOS to Linux over a decade ago. Having to restart a 64GB machine constantly because it runs out of memory? Meanwhile my 4GB Linux computer shows a 38-day uptime (only because I accidentally unplugged it last month) and my two Linux servers have uptimes of over a year.

I don’t know what you’re doing on a 4GB machine but I promise most workloads that create significant memory pressure would start creating problems for you, just like on macOS.

I use a dual xeon, 64GB Linux desktop which performs reasonably well.

A colleague runs a Linux machine with 16GB of ram. Compiling the same project can cause OOM issues for him and the kernel starts whacking processes.

Even if he closes all non-essential processes, his builds run 10x as long as mine due to memory constraints.

My main point here - let’s not pretend your 4GB machine is being used to do any intense local work.

The inverse of this is seen on my Intel MacBook Air and my colleague’s M1 MacBook Air. The compilation time for our code is 35 minutes or more on my machine and only 3 minutes on the M1.

> My main point here - let’s not pretend your 4GB machine is being used to do any intense local work.

That depends entirely on what you consider intense local work. Just because you are not compiling doesn’t mean running your 15 microservice stack locally is not intense.

Any memory intensive work. I thought his meaning was clear.

4 GB is maybe small nowadays, but memory-intensive is relative.

I'd argue that _most_ programmers or even data analysts don't need more than 8 GB to perform their actual work.

But realistically they need 16+ anyway because of opening 200 browser tabs, memory-heavy IDEs, etc. 32 or 64 is nice for sure, but definitely not needed for actual "work" workloads for the most part.

Having many browser tabs open (for research) is part of the 'actual work'.

They need 16+ anyway because of running 2 or 3 Electron apps.

Memory intensive work wasn't the topic of conversation. GGP's comment was about how often he had to reboot his laptop despite it's immense memory budget, not about how much faster it was at performing memory-intensive tasks.

Of course it will run out of memory if it's taking more than 16GB of ram.

Most Linux distro suggest you to setup swap so instead of crashing it could use the swap. I personally don't use swap, because if something is consuming too much ram I most likely want it dead.

I don't know what are you compiling, but requiring more than 16GB of ram for compiling something sounds lazy and unneeded. Likewise you can use a browser extension which reclaims ram from unused tabs.

I can understand the need to have 64gb to do video editing or rendering, but most of the times we need that much ram is because our software is badly written and we don't want to face the problem, not because of the complexity of what we're doing.

> I personally don't use swap, because if something is consuming too much ram I most likely want it dead.

Swap is still useful to move stuff out to disk that _never_ gets accessed again.

>A colleague runs a Linux machine with 16GB of ram. Compiling the same project can cause OOM issues for him and the kernel starts whacking processes.

Which distro and can't you configure this? (Genuinely interested)

Also if the MacBook is better, than you should use that device. It's your "conclusion".

I regret moving from macOS to Linux.

While the tooling and system stability are better, the desktop and app experiences are far worse. It’s buggy, half-baked, and crash.

I regularly hop distributions and do clean installs to see if that will fix it but they’re all the same — pop!_os might be slightly more stable in that regard.

I’ve been using Linux since 1992. I’ve had several year periods in the 90s and early 2000s where Linux was all I used.

I can ditch GNOME, KDE, and XFCE and go back to twm or i3 or fvwm or Window Maker, but I’ve moved beyond thoses experiences. I want a more functional desktop.

But, I see now why I paid more to put up with Apple.

Can you please explain what exactly you get from the Apple desktop you don't with any of those options? I'm currently forced onto a mac for work and I find it lacking in almost every way other than an ever so slight advantage in beauty.

So besides dpi-scaling issues linux is known for, whats the draw? Some hotkey that does a thing? Some visual candy? Smoothness in transitions?

Whatever it is, it's hard for me to imagine it being worth the tradeoff. I can't even name desktop workspaces on a Mac!

I'm reviewing the "new features" section on Monterey: https://www.apple.com/macos/monterey/features/ and I'm not seeing much other than a few known areas (multi-device support if you bought fully into the apple ecosystem, etc).

With most "I tried linux desktop" people it's a problem of DE/WM, but you seem to be beyond that so I'm genuinely curious.

> Can you please explain what exactly you get from the Apple desktop you don't with any of those options?

A more cohesive experience across the desktop and applications, eg.:

- The look and feel is uniform. Admittedly somewhat less so, these days now that the Apple Human Interface Guidelines are largely ignored.

- Mac apps and generally more stable.

- Mac apps generally have more features.

- The Mac apps I use generally tend to tie into the hardware (hw acceleration, drivers, etc) much better. The benefit of controlling the vertical, I suppose.

- The keyboard shortcuts both exist and are the same across apps.

- The design patterns.

- The AppleScript/x-callback-url, etc).

- Third party apps generally tend to fit well into the above.

On Linux, almost everybody seems to have their own ideas on how an app should be arranged. With full desktop environments, like GNOME and KDE lessen this, but it's still really, really common.

That said, my money is still on Linux and other open source OSes, because I don't want a single company telling me what I can and can't do.

yea like Mac not supporting Vulkan... or that Safari browser we have to make constant workarounds for, its the new IE5

You mean Safari, that browser that does not kill your battery?

MoltenVK is integrated into Vulkan now so Vulkan works fine on Mac

Not OP but I have extensive experience as a user of all three major desktop systems. Aqua, the macOS desktop, is by far the most stable and consistent, and in my experience the most usable and powerful as well.

A few things that stand out about it to me vs GNOME 3, KDE Plasma, Xfce, LXDE, and whatever the Windows interface is called:

- The consistency of the menu system, and being able to search and use the menus of any app from the keyboard with shift-cmd-?. This is like having Emacs M-x or Sublime/VSCode shift-cmd-P in every desktop app.

- Being able to assign custom keyboard shortcuts for any menu option in any app.

- Emacs keybindings for editing text in every text field (including on the web). I believe GNOME Tweaks is supposed to do this, but I could never get it to work reliably and universally like macOS.

- Native app ecosystem. Third-party Mac software is generally the most polished, though not quite as much exists as for Windows.

- System animations. This is a small one, but it makes things more fun and makes the whole system feel fluid and “organic,” for lack of a better term.


>When people say Linux just works fine for them I genuinely think like am I crazy or cursed or something?

People who do that generally don't use Gnome, but i3/swaywm/xmonad and multitude of tools where you're in control what happens.

Linux works fine for me, but I don’t use a desktop. I totally agree with you that they are disasters, with poor documentation and multiple conflicting ways to make settings.

Firefox crashing is probably a Firefox problem.

You can set the scaling to be anything you want on X, just set the Xft.dpi number in your .Xresources file.

One problem with your Hackintosh install is that it’s closed source, no? As far as you know it’s exfiltrating your financial information to China.

Desktop Linux is easily the least-stable OS I use with any regularity. It was my main OS from something like '01-'10, but after I finally gave OS X a try, and since Windows got its shit together some time late in the WinXP service pack cycle (or, arguably, Win2k, but that wouldn't run my games) and stopped crashing all the time, it's really hard to justify using desktop Linux.

Does the OS hard lock or completely crash? No... unless you have graphics drivers issues, which isn't unlikely. Then, oh man, yes, lots. X/Wayland crashes that restart the window server? Yep. Applications crashing pretty regularly or glitching out so badly they have to be restarted, including the basic applications distributed with the heavier DEs? Yep. And it turns out that your windowing environment crashing or the main program you're currently using crashing is really close to as bad as the whole machine blue-screening in Windows, from the perspective of the user. Using Linux makes me anxious, even though I very much know WTF I'm doing with it. MacOS and even (spits) Windows don't do that to me, any more. Now that I've experienced not feeling that way, I can't go back. I go years between work-lost crashes of any sort at all on MacOS. Linux, one month without such a thing would be miraculous.

If you build up from almost nothing and keep things very minimal and have very boring and stable old hardware, and do as much as possible from the command line, it can be kinda OK, but it's a lot of work to set something up like that, and ongoing effort every time you do something manually that'd be automatic or trivial on a more full-featured GUI desktop. If you start with something like Ubuntu or Fedora standard desktop installs, though, there's just too much that can go wrong, and it will, with some frequency.

I could tolerate some hardware or workflows not working and things generally being a little less convenient, maybe, if it were rock solid, but it's very far from that. The main problems seem to be that its entire graphics stack is incredibly fragile (Wayland doesn't seem to have done much, if anything, to fix that) and it's way too easy for a glitchy driver to screw up the whole system.

I've switched to Linux from Mac OS about 2 years ago, being frustrated by memory consumption, slowdowns and freezes. After trying a couple of distributions / DEs, I've settled on Manjaro (Arch based) and KDE. Delighted with flexibility, features and general performance and stability. While, before, I was constantly tempering with the environment and changing stuff and there was always "something missing", I've found myself not needing to touch configuration or change anything in my workflow for more than a year now...I did have some glitches and CPU usage issues when playing YT videos on Intel-based graphics, but have since been using Lenovo laptops with Ryzen 4000 and 5000, and it's been flawless without any tempering. P14s Gen 2 AMD (5850U + 32GB RAM) is the best laptop I have ever used (software development), and I change them A LOT...

AMD graphics on Linux nowadays are vastly more stable than anything else. NVIDIA is proprietary crap and Intel Graphics still have cross-platform bugs so often is almost comical.

The experience you are describing is more akin to what I remember being Linux in the '00s than nowadays. I run a machine with arguably a buggy Ryzen 1st gen motherboard (it's quite buggy on Windows too), and I have a very stable desktop experience with Arch Linux and KDE Plasma. The real game changer has been AMDGPU, I'm yet to have any sort of graphical issue with an RX 580 on Linux, and Plasma is arguably quite solid nowadays.

The only issue I had recently were audio issues which were both due to my buggy soundcard and a bug in Pipewire. Excluding that, I've had almost no issues with desktop Linux since 2017.

I think your experience is not universal. I would say windows has been far less reliable than linux on my thinkpad machine, but overall I have to say that I have yet to use an OS that never crashed on me, all software of this complexity is buggy.

macOS still crashes, has weird bugs and every 6 months they go and change a bunch of shit that either deprecates functionality, causes conflict with how things work or takes another handful of your privacy.

Grass isn't always greener.

Edit for an example, I'm stuck on Catalina because they tried deprecating functionality my firewall uses. And the window shifter shortcut key program I use won't work in Big Sur.

Sure, macOS still crashes, I didn't claim it doesn't. But macOS crashes with a lot less regularity for me.

I use Linux as my daily driver and the apps I use (GNOME Terminal, other terms, Spotify, Slack, Brave and Firefox, and the GNOME desktop itself) crash multiple, sometimes several times a day on my two (work, personal) machines.

This happens across diverse machines, as well as across multiple distributions (though again, pop!_os, so far seems much less trashy for whatever reason).

what are you doing to cause these crashes or what hardware?? i use manjaro and pop_o, makes no sense since i get less crashes then windows and my computer is on for days without anything crashing, other then me writing a bug and crashing my own stuff :) i do lots of work and gaming on them so i don't know why your experience is so different.

> and every 6 months they go and change a bunch of shit that either deprecates functionality, causes conflict with how things work or takes another handful of your privacy.

No, that's Microsoft Windows. Apple only does it annually.

Windows has some of the best backwards compatibility around. Stuff from the 90s still works on Windows. Meanwhile macOS deprecated all 32 bit programs.

Yes and many of the major Linux distros have discontinued or plan to discontinue official 32-bit/multilib support. Why? A lot of 32-bit libraries have serious vulnerabilities that no one is fixing. Essentially most of the world has transitioned to 64-bit except for a few key areas that are still trying to run libraries that are decades old.

The kinds of things the post above complained about breaking on macOS—third-party software that messes with system internals in unsupported ways—also break frequently on Windows. To say nothing of the first-party breakage of Microsoft constantly moving around settings, re-enabling or re-installing annoyances you turned off, and removing your ability to easily get rid of them, and adding new ones behind your back.

Microsoft really only tries to preserve basic compatibility for well-behaved applications that aren't tightly integrated with any OS components or specific hardware/drivers and aren't doing anything that Microsoft disapproves of. Anything that strays outside those boundaries will run into trouble, and a lot of software ends up falling outside those boundaries even if it didn't really need to.

Both operating systems are pretty bad at letting you wield control over your own computer. But macOS doesn't try as hard to obscure the BS or obstruct your attempts to tame it, and macOS actually lets you refuse updates that you don't want.

I'm sure I've gotten 100-days uptimes on my MacBook. Close the lid at night, it goes to sleep, open it up in the morning, and continue working.

I can’t get more than upper 30’s before it just starts doing too many odd things to work around

Yep, same for me. But the restart fixes it every time. That's why I set a timer that reminds me to restart after 20+ days.

Same here. I get ridiculous uptimes on mine. (And, yes, I defer SW updates…)

Only if you skip updates that require a reboot?

This has been my experience as well. I've had an M1 MacBook Pro since they came out and I've never had to reboot my machine outside of software updates that required me to. It has always just run.

I use my computer to write Elixir code, write music with Logic and Studio One, and edit photos/videos. Maybe none of those tasks trigger the problems other people are having.

Don't OS upgrades come out more often than that?

Refreshing just HN probably doesn't take too many resources.

Just to be clear: This perfectly fine experience you describe is also exactly the experience of 99% of Apple users, including me. You only hear the ones that complain.

The ones that don’t complain have low standards. When I switched, although OSX was pretty solid, it was trading frequently spinning beachballs for the first consistently responsive computer I’d ever used. I had come to regard macOS sluggishness as normal, as do most Mac users, because they haven’t experienced anything better.

> The ones that don’t complain have low standards.

> they haven’t experienced anything better.

I don't want to gratify this pointless flame any more than to say that I have used all of Windows (XP, Vista, 8, 8.1, 10), Debian, Fedora, Ubuntu, and macOS as my daily driver at one point or another, and I currently use macOS because I have yet to experience anything better. There is a simple explanation for your problems here: something is wrong with your system (or you are overtaxing it) if it beachballs constantly. This is not typical macOS behavior, especially not since they switched to SSDs. I actually haven’t seen a beachball in years.

I don't disagree with you, but you didn't exactly refute the point of 'low standards' just by using multiple OSes ;)

My standards are high enough that I choose to use macOS and not Linux or Windows. I make no other claims about them.

More like "specific enough" instead of "high enough". Use Apple all you want but don't lie to yourself by saying Windows isn't a better, more powerful, more stable operating system.

It just isn't as polished, and even that's debatable.

I switched to a 13" M1 after having a Dell XPS 15 as my daily driver. I had high standards and Apple blew them out of the water. I see some beach ball on occasion, but I slam the machine hard. (8gb ram). It has been more reliable than the XPS 15.

Better than a Dell XPS 15 is no standard at all. The Dell XPS 15 is an utterly terrible laptop that breaks if you close the lid and put it in your bag when you get up from your seat. It's a portable desktop falsely advertised as a laptop due to its many flaws. If the best that can be said for apple is better than Dell XPS 15, that is a really, really damning review. I hope it's vastly better than that for you.

> Better than a Dell XPS 15 is no standard at all.

so what is the laptop that would meet this standard for which you're making a judgement?

So far, apple hardware has been superior to any other manufacturer, even with their warts, and their anti-consumer practises (of not having replaceable batteries, etc).

Not OP, but I have to chime in here- Dell's XPS line somehow got a reputation that it absolutely did not deserve as a good laptop to run linux on (or a good laptop at all).

I've been perfectly happy with a surface book 2, and various Lenovo and HP laptops. They each have better and worse product lines. Currently rocking an HP elitebook for personal use and a MB Pro for work.

The hardware quality is more or less the same on both. With the pro, you get a moderately better touchpad, a bit thinner and metal chassis. On the other hand, crap keyboard and the abomination that is the touch bar, and no legacy ports.

Personally, I don't think I would buy Apple for myself ever again, but that's just me.

> Dell's XPS line somehow got a reputation that it absolutely did not deserve as a good laptop to run linux on

This is where it started... https://www.engadget.com/2009-05-24-dell-now-offering-studio...

It got the reputation because it is well deserved. The clickpad is far superior than macs and the software support is great

No one will ever convince me that a laptop with a web cam whose position is limited to looking straight up your nose is quality.

I primarily navigate by keyboard, so the difference between an acceptable and amazing trackpad is pretty minimal for my preferences. On the other hand, port wonkiness, temperamental wifi, okay keys, mediocre battery, driver issues and an utterly useless webcam convinced me to ditch the XPS the first chance I got. It's amazing I used it nearly 18 months.

The fact that we even have to debate about which laptop is good for Linux or not makes me not want to bother. I switched to Mac 12 years ago, and I never had to bother thinking about choosing hardware since. It just works.

>So far, apple hardware has been superior to any other manufacturer, even with their warts, and their anti-consumer practises (of not having replaceable batteries, etc).

Milage may vary with other manufacturers, it doesn't look like you would change to another manufacturer. Which is ok.

Check business notebooks, from HP or Lenovo. (I forgot one particular Dell series.)

Ok... so what's the laptop that can compete with the new 14 and 16 Macbook Pros then and doesn't have some stupid flaw? The issue with waking up in bags seems to be caused by Modern Standby which is on most new Windows laptops?

I would go with a Lenovo or HP machine before a Dell. Even if they all have the sleep issue (I don't know if that's the case), both Lenovo and HP have better build quality.

I've had multiple Asus laptops (UX305, UX330 and most recently S435UA) and all of them ran Fedora flawlessly out of the box. Granted, none of them had Nvidia GPUs which is the usual pain point of desktop Linux.

I was going to say just disable modern standby because that was totally a thing until spring 2020 when the registry key to disable it was removed.

Microsoft is basically a toy OS run by incompetents without reasonable QA unfit to be anything but a launcher for stream.

HP Z-book, some Lenovo Thinkpads and some consumer Lenovo and HP notebooks.

I have had the opposite experience. Switched from a MB Pro that kept getting progressively worse over the course of a year (keys giving, overheating, lock ups) requiring rather annoying applecare interactions to an XPS 15. Granted it is not quite as pretty look at, but blows the mbpro out of the water performance and stability wise.

That doesn't mean linux is any better. I built a brand new ryzen x5800 machine late last year, running linux mint. When I first built it, the computer has had duplicate unremovable mouse cursors appearing on the screen. And my trackpad sometimes randomly became unresponsive (or one time, the up and down directions flipped!). And neither suspending nor hybernating worked - the machine wouldn't come back up.

All these problems have since gone away thanks to software updates and (importantly) a BIOS update. It turned out my USB controller wasn't being configured correctly by the motherboard. If I didn't happen to check for BIOS updates, I'd still have lots of problems.

And that was still a better experience than the HP laptop I bought a couple of years ago. That laptop had so much HP crap preinstalled that it sat on 30% CPU usage at all times out of the box. The biggest offender was some HP process doing microphone noise reduction. It ran all the time regardless of whether or not the microphone was being used - and utterly demolished the machine's battery life.

Apple is far from perfect, but they have a better reputation than most vendors for a reason. And their technical support is are excellent. I've had thousands of dollars of free hardware repairs & replacements over the years when things have broken in my apple machines. I wish they didn't break so much; and I wish they prioritised fixing software bugs over adding features internally. (APFS aside, I would trade the last 5 years of macOS features for better stability and performance in a heartbeat.) But there's a reason they're so well liked on HN. They're still pretty excellent in comparison to the competition.

Tell that to my tech lead who spent more than 8k buying and repairing his macbook due to constant motherboard issues. I love macs but don't dare to try them due to soooo many people in my circles seem to have very frequent HW issues with them. It seems to be either in the shop being repaired or having issues with connecting bluetooth stuff. I'm used to Thinkpad reliability so not looking forward to trade that up for some pretty pixels. My lenovo laptops had 0 issues in the past ten years. Zero. But now I'm web development and I need a mac for Safari to test locally.

I manage a fleet of macs. I have not seen any issues like that. I'd ask what your friends are doing to their computers to be seeing such a disproportionate amount of hardware issues.

How well does macOS run on your home-built Ryzen machine?

Huh? What point are you trying to make? I don't care how well macOS runs on my machine. I care how well any given computer gets out of the way and lets me get my work done. Today that means intellij, the rust compiler, firefox and nodejs. I want to spend my day working. Not futzing around with HP bloatware. Not rebooting due to apple memory leaks. And not guessing why my keyboard needs to be reconnected.

In your story, you built a machine, and Linux didn’t work well on it at first. Later, it worked fine. Meanwhile, macOS never did and probably never will run on it. And you introduce this story as an illustration of how “Linux isn’t any better.” So, to borrow your words: Huh? What point are you trying to make?

In my story linux didn't work well at first. Then with some time and work, it worked fine. An HP windows laptop didn't work well at first - but after I spent some time removing the HP bloatware, it worked "fine". This article says that mac laptops aren't working well because of memory leaks. But in a few months Apple will probably fix their software bugs and they'll work fine too.

You said:

> The [mac users] that don’t complain have low standards

I agree with you. I'd go even further and say most users have low standards, because the out-of-the-box experience with most modern computers is pretty bad. Apple users should absolutely complain more when the out-of-the-box experience with their computer isn't perfect. We all should.

Apple customers keep buying apple computers despite their issues not because we have low standards. We do it because the alternatives are even worse.

“most users have low standards”

I think you’re probably right about this. It’s like we’ve been trained to have low expectations.

As an avid linux user I can tell you. Linux users aren't "trained" to have low expectations. They are trained to be masochists that enjoy pain. The raw amount of configuration, fixes and setup work that has to go into making some linux distros work is astronomical.

If nonlinux users are trained to have low expectations, Linux users are trained to rape themselves constantly.

I see your point of view a lot but I don't think configuring a system is that hard and I think it's preferable, compared to have tons of complexity preconfigured without your knowledge.

Here's my experience with Arch Linux: 1) You install what you need to install 2) You read the doc and configure to your liking, learning what the system can and cannot do and how it works with everything else 3) Things generally work as documented and you go your merry way 4) When something break or doesn't work, you have the knowledge or a general idea of what to fix

Compared to proprietary systems where there is no documentation and little configuration, when things break or misbehave you're essentially screwed. Will you wait for an official fix or look online for reverse engineers? You bought a black box and you can't just open it and fix it.

I'd rather spend a day learning about my system during the installation and having it work for years, instead of buying yet another black box I can't open.

>I'd rather spend a day learning about my system during the installation and having it work for years, instead of buying yet another black box I can't open.

Learning linux doesn't take a day. Second off those black boxes statistically are more reliable than linux EVEN when you account for all the things you talked about.

The reason for this is simple. Microsoft has a business advantage and unfairly strong arms hardware manufacturers to make their stuff work with windows. This unfair advantage makes the windows user experience better and more reliable than GNU linux whos' developers constantly have to play catch up with hardware.

It's is sad isn't it?

In the last 20 years PC hardware has become ridiculously faster - and yet the user experience seems to have changed little.

I saw an article ages ago whereby Microsoft apparently had a dependencies approval gateway. If you made any change based on Windows you had to remove/reduce your dependencies or make a good case for not doing so.

I was hoping that would catch on.

The point he's trying to make is linux on a Ryzen isn't as good as MacOS on an M1. The user experience is inferior. That is his point and his point is fact. Hope you understand now.

user experience is inferior? how so? what nonsense, i have heard countless stories on dumb things Apple forces on its users while on Linux you can just use Vulkan... Imagine if your app can't contact Apple servers they don't launch or take minutes to open...and when they do work they are recording information... why on earth do people still use closed source software. Now we have to deal with Safari crap... like we used to deal with IE5, having to have workarounds for browser standards Apple refuses to follow or implement.

Don't waste your breath, let them be 'happy' in their little cult. I think Apple users are often mad because subconsciously they know they are taken a fool.

It's not a cult. I use all three operating systems and I'm highly proficient using linux. My distro of choice is Manjaro and NixOS and I have a lot of experience with debian and ubuntu as well.

Each operating system has benefits and downsides. For user experience linux is definitively the worst. Definitively. The differences are so large that it's almost comical how someone on this planet can't see the difference. If you can't see this then you are the one that is part of a cult.

Feels super ironic you choose to describe Apple users as a "cult" in a reply to a guy that sneaks his "Safari is the new IE5" in every response... ;)

> user experience is inferior? how so?

I use linux every day for work and:

- Hidpi support is spotty (its getting better but still a bit spotty)

- Smooth scrolling in applications is inconsistent at best

- The keyboard shortcuts for moving the text cursor around are inconsistent between programs

- Hardware support is much more of a crap shoot. Linux has a harder job than macos in trying to support every combination of janky hardware out there. But as a user, I don't really care. I just know that if I buy a mac, the OS will work perfectly with the hardware on offer. That isn't true on linux.

- Lots of useful software isn't available on linux. Eg, I love Monodraw, but thats macos only.

- App distribution on Linux is a mess. Apt? RPM? Snap? Flatpack? Etc etc. I have 2 copies of discord installed for some reason, and I have no idea what the difference is between them.


Linux gives you the choice and freedom to spend an unlimited number of hours customizing everything. With linux I'm in complete control and I love that. On macos, things usually just work out of the box. I love that too.

No OS is perfect. There's tradeoffs with everything. If you don't understand other people's preferences, that doesn't make you right. It makes you ignorant.

Linux can't even run on the M1.

He's obviously comparing a linux PC experience with an apple OSX experience. It's a completely valid comparison but you're just being mean an inappropriate.

Linux does run on the M1. Not great, yet, but it's getting there.

My bad. You're right. So let's compare Linux on the M1 with OSX on the M1. Which one has the better user experience?

Apparently it runs just fine a little fiddling. https://github.com/mikigal/ryzen-hackintosh

> "The ones that don't complain have low standards.... most Mac users... haven’t experienced anything better."

That's a pretty broad brush you're painting with right there.

It's in reply to "99% of all Mac users are happy" - which brush is more broad?

"100% of the 1%" is less nuanced than "99%".

Lol. Sorry your own experience was bad. Doesn't mean everyone had the same experience as you though.

I ran windows, then linux for ~4 years as a daily driver, switched to mac about a year ago.

I do back end/front end development full time for work + work on many performance sensitive personal projects, and couldn't be happier with the OS.

It's almost like different users have different experiences based on their use cases...

> The ones that don’t complain have low standards.

Wow, well, thanks a lot. I've been developing on both the Mac and Linux for years and I don't have this issue on any of the multiple MBPs I use, including my personal 2013 model. I'm not saying I have no problems on the Mac, but they're not worse than the issues I had with Linux, especially on laptops.

I work daily in Linux, OSX, and Windows. If there was significant differences in responsiveness for day to day usage, I would notice.

OSX is plenty responsive, and I basically never see beachballs.

It's not a matter of low standards.

Is this sort of sweeping generalization really necessary? I can tell you that it's not true in any case. I'm one of those Mac users that doesn't complain about performance, because I rarely see the spinning beach ball.

I haven't seen a spinning beachball on MacOS in years. I'm not even sure it still exists anymore. But also only rarely have a sluggish system, with or without a spinning beachball.

Definitely still exists. I get it in emacs sometimes (god only knows why).

Good to know! I definitely have not seen it in years! (two 2015 Macbooks running Catalina with 16GB).

what are spinning beach balls? i don't understand? like BSOD ?

A cursor indicating the frontmost application is unresponsive.

You are confusing your own personal experience for the standard experience of macOS users. Personally, beachballs are so rare for me in the past few years that I'm always amazed when I see one.

Who am I to deny somebody the opportunity to feel superior? It’s a form of community service.

Thanks for telling me that I have low standards. Amazing considering MacBooks on my desk.

Maybe not constantly but I have to restart my 64 GB Linux machine because it runs out of memory. Linux's OOM killer is terrible. I literally have to wait half an hour while my desktop is frozen for the OOM killer to kick in. And no, spamming the key combo for invoking the OOM killer once this happens doesn't help.

Use earlyoom or another oom daemon for a 1000x better experience and consider figuring out what is leaking. Do you use gnome? It used to have a bad leak that was supposed to have been fixed.

I think it's mostly firefox just holding things in memory since so much is free. Eventually it just all adds up and eventually I try to compile something and then it will run out of memory.

Yes, I can go setup an oom daemon, but Linux should handle this for me out of the box (ideally with some sort of logic to avoid killing something like X taking down every single program I have open). Getting stuck for half an hour or longer is just not acceptable to let happen.

Thanks I'll try that. The behavior when memory is low is easily the worst part of desktop Linux

I never regretted moving from Linux to Mac also a decade ago. Mac has been fairly smooth for me, still on a 2013 mbp that just needed a battery replacement. Linux, however, was pain, quite often.

its a lot different now, unless your running it on proprietary hardware without official driver support, like the random stuff laptops have these days, but now we have many companies making laptops for Linux so it has improved a lot. Why give money to a company to use their software when you can use open software and help fix and improve something everyone can use for free.

On the other hand my Linux computer struggles to go 10 days without a reboot due to the graphics driver bugging out, while my old MBA basically never needed rebooting.

Funny, I moved from Linux to Mac because I got so sick of no good laptops with full support for Linux and it's never ending subsystems for audio, webcams, trackpads, etc. And not like Linux UIs are known for being efficient and memory friendly either.

try viewing 2000 image files on Ubuntu desktop (20.04). It was so slow that I wrote a web interface to do the job instead.

This sounds appealing until you remember that you can't get all the nice apps in Linux.

Hahaha the old “if your workload just looked like my workload” argument.

I like how x86 is a power sucking hog for the performance and enthusiasts response is to go out and buy more power sucking hogs!

Someone wasn’t around when Linux could figure out what to do with a USB device. Spectre? Meltdown? What are those?

It’s almost as if engineering is hard and being a critic is easy.

Kind of like numbers, language allows for a never ending, so big in a sense, corpus of little ideas.

Amen. I can't think of another brand that fosters so much "I'll spend more money here" compared to "I'll use a different brand."

These issues notwithstanding, the total user experience of owning a Mac laptop is far superior to any Linux or Windows machine I've tried, at least in the past 3 years or so.

Two concrete examples: trackpad feels like shit on both Windows and Linux, installing or updating drivers and some apps on Windows constantly switches back to legacy modes to display the installers (with different fonts, no subpixel smoothing etc.). If it's not a deal breaker, it is annoying as hell and something that almost never happens on my Mac.

OP was describing very high-spec hardware which locks up and becomes unresponsive under their normal workload, potentially losing work or wasting their time. That seems like a much more significant issue than inconsistent font display or the feel of the input device.

Your experience must differ, but if I spent $2000+ on a device only to find that was locking up (due to poor memory management in a standard component!) under my standard workload, I would be livid. I would probably return it, and then tell the next 10 people I meet about my poor experience.

That said, I have run across a Windows 7 bug where the font manager would repeatedly fail and leave its cache/log on disk, only to restart and repeat until the hard disk was just about full. Complaints about the poor state of software engineering as a discipline go back to the beginning.

> These issues notwithstanding, the total user experience of owning a Mac laptop is far superior to any Linux or Windows machine I've tried, at least in the past 3 years or so.


I don't love Apple. They're a corporation, so at best our interests temporarily align. Loving them would be absurd. I really really want them to have strong competitors. I'd love to be back on an open source OS full-time, like I was for many years.

Unfortunately, they're so far ahead of the competition, that they screw up, sometimes even in a few ways at the same time, and people come out saying "LOL and Apple fanboys won't switch to Linux even now", and that's true... but it's because I'd be trading a few problems for a few score problems.

I ran Linux on laptops and desktops for about a decade, as my main computers. Ubuntu near the end, Gentoo for about five years, Mandrake really early on, a little time with Fedora somewhere in there, a sprinkling of Debian. I still try it out every year or two! I wish it weren't, but it's still much, much worse, and in the best case slows me down and gets in my way more than a "bad" Apple machine with a "bad" version of an OS X / MacOS, barring actual faulty hardware.

^ This. It's not that I don't want to switch to a different company, it's just everything else is a worse, overall experience. I'm on Windows every week or so, and while it feels much faster than Mac, on the same hardware, there are just too many little things that annoy me. (have tried a few Linux flavours too, not really a contender for my use case)

As a counterpoint, I was a Linux user for ~20 years (eventually with a macOS dev machine on my desk as well).

I got so sick of troubleshooting issues myself, I switched to Windows 7 and have never had to troubleshoot my OS since then. I don't google Windows issues, I don't have crashes, nothing.

It's nice to have a machine that I can just work on and not constantly debug.

(I 100% expect privacy advocates to admonish me for this, but I use hardware I assembled myself and block MS telemetry.)

In a world without MacOS, I'd probably be running Linux on a really beefy Windows machine under virtualization, for work. Desktop Linux is so much more stable and pleasant to use in a VM with Windows or MacOS handling the actual hardware. Still a bit unstable, but not nearly as bad.

libinput with Wayland on a MacBook Pro puts its trackpad handling on par with macOS.

I'm dailying Wayland on Ubuntu, but it feels like there's always a "it'll be really good soon" promise to Wayland.

yea it takes time but eventually open software will be better, just look at how well Blender is doing and even Darktable is way way better then Adobe Lightroom can't understand why anyone uses that anymore while a free alternative that is better is out there.

That's how much we hate Windows and desktop Linux.

Good thing you can afford the kind of expense that the luxury of that hate is costing you then, I guess.

For a professional developer the difference in cost is not that much bigger.

Well, generally speaking Windows and Mac developers are in such demand that hardware is quite a small expense compared to how much they make.

Is the experience very different for Linux developers?

It's very weird to be talking about "windows, mac or linux" developers.

Desktop application development today is maybe about 1-5% of all development, while overwhelming majority of backend development - the largest category - targets Linux.

Percentage of the way to being as good as all desktop operating systems ought, at a minimum, to be:

Windows: 70%

Linux: 20-80% depending on your hardware, what you're doing with it, and how lucky you got with the current kernel & libraries your distro is running.

MacOS: 90%

So when Apple fucks up really bad and MacOS temporarily drops to 70%, no, I still don't switch. Every desktop operating system is shitty, but there are degrees of shitty.

And yes, I use all three pretty regularly.

Crashing while doing your work is not "drops to 70%". That is the problem we were discussing and that is not a minor inconvenience.

Oh look the main speaker for the Mac folk!

Probably because other brands don’t do anything novel to warrant such loyalty. Apples hardware and software stack is undeniably unique which in turn makes it a brand that people will put up with issues because well, it has things other systems don’t.

Because Windows is so much worse. I'm now required to use Windows for a project, and it is a pain to use that system every extra minute.

You might get a better experience running Windows in a VM. Reports are that it is faster that way.

It's because they do so many anti-consumer things to lock their victims in.

Changing brands becomes more of an ordeal than staying.

Tesla. So many people seem to have problems with the cars/lack of quality only to say “still love the car” or “it’s my xxx number Tesla and they’re still doing [problem]”

Apple has few and long-lived product identifiers; as such it is possible for specific problems to become well known.

It's extraordinary to find more than a handful of anecdotes about any particular model number of consumer Windows laptop that happens to be on sale at Best Buy today. There are so many, and they cycle so rapidly.

What other machine can you buy to run Xcode on?

Also, I get along just fine with the last few Macs I have had...

That seems like another symptom of the same problem. Apple locked me into their ecosystem...but that is their right, after all it is their platform. Apple sold me faulty hardware/software but I have to buy more Apple products (new hardware, support) since I am locked in and cannot do my work on non-Apple hardware. Their behavior may not be illegal (IANAL) but I find it quite user hostile. The main problem I see with all this is that since Apple is getting away with it, more and more companies are trying the same tactics and normalizing user lock-in and charging extra to fix faulty hardware and software.

As someone who hasn't been in the Mac ecosystem since his and his mom's iMac both broke in the same way in high school, how does the Mac ecosystem lock you in?

Comment just above mentions the need to use macs because of xcode.

As far as I know you need to use Xcode to distribute the software, or to write macOS-native software. I have written plenty of Java Swing apps without touching Xcode at all.

To be fair to the OP, the "more expensive" machine is also probably the fastest laptop on the planet at compiling code, so there's also that.

You can use alternative toolchains like like cctools-port[1] and xcbuild[2]. See, for example, this article [3] on how to build Swift UI apps for iOS using Linux.

[1] https://github.com/tpoechtrager/cctools-port

[2] https://github.com/apple-cross-toolchain/xcbuild

[3] https://thi.im/posts/cross-compiling-for-ios-part-1-build-sw...

Wow, they make it so easy!/s

How about the Mac Mini?

Or Hackintosh. Hey, GP asked 'what machine'. Didn't require it to be an Apple.

I’ve given this thought for an older MBP of mine that can’t upgrade to latest OS so that it can be used as a CI.

My issue with that is 1. Can I trust the hackintosh to not be compromised and 2. Uploading an IPA via hackintosh feels like bananas.

If you use say Proxmox and create your own macOS image and compile your own Opencore then you should be OK. You can do same on VirtualBox. (On a PC, cause I doubt older MBPs have the necessary stuff like VT-d.)

Of course, once Apple kills off x86-64 macOS it is going to become more complicated.

Hackintosh's are dead as soon as Apple stops supporting Intel chips.

That won't be for a very long time. There's a lot of Mac Pros out there. They're still supporting the 8-year old 2013 Mac Pro, the trashcan one. They sold a lot of the revised Mac Pro to animation studios and such. I wouldn't count on support for those being dropped for at least ten years.

That would be the same for OPs use case. He’s using a M1 MacBook Pro so nothing would change. The M1 devices don’t support more than 16 GB RAM, too.

The recently released M1 MacBook pros go up to 64GB.

I want to buy a 16" M1 Max because it looks awesome...but my base-model 13" M1 is a beast of a machine and I use it every day for dev work. It has only 8gb of ram but it still chews through everything. And I got it for a great price brand new considering how much I've been using it since launch. In my own experience so far, if I buy that expensive 16" M1 Max it will be because I want it.

Note that I've had Dell XPS laptops that were configured with the same price point as a Macbook and while nice...those devices definitely didn't have the same attention to quality that I've experienced with Apple products. So it seems unfair to make such a broad criticism against Apple users at large!

So that's how people should react to a software bug?, move to a new OS and try to get as close as you can to all the apps you were using for years...

Find me one laptop with a trackpad that works as well as a MacBook and we can talk.

I use a MacBook trackpad to make diagrams, for 3D modeling using Blender and FreeCAD, to draw schematics and route PCBs with KiCAD, and whatever else you’d otherwise do with a mouse, and it just doesn’t get in the way.

Over the years, I’ve been forced to use work supplied top-end Thinkpads, HP, and Dell laptops and none come even close to even the trackpad of my long retired, lowly 2009 MacBook Air 11”.

I don’t really care whether I use macOS, Linux or Windows: they all run the same applications. I also don’t care about the price of a laptop: what does it matter that a tool that I use day in day out for years costs $1000 more?

I care that it’s usable.

MacBooks are usable for things I use them for. The other laptops are not.

This right here, I got a Razer Blade from work last year, and found the touchpad so awful I assumed there must’ve been bad drivers installed. 3 driver installs later and I realized it just wasn’t as good as the MacBook trackpad, and I’d just need to pack a mouse everywhere I bring this laptop.

> Hundreds of millions of people, they must be crazy or very stupid! I must be right and they are the ones in the wrong!

That's how you sound.

Your mistake is thinking that that machine "doesn't work". It obviously works for them.

thats the users every company wants!

It’s not that amazing…

What is the alternative platform that runs Xcode but with the memory leak bugs fixed?

I think most everyone knows that this is a software bug that will be fixed.

I love my 2017 mbp and I so want to tell every person posting workarounds for their $2000 brick please return it! Tim Apple won’t fix anything with all the $$$ in his eyes flowing in.

A finance professor once told me “if you don’t vote with your wallet you don’t get to complain”

Have you tried not buying their shit?

Where did your comment come from, nothing in the parent comment is related to what you're saying.

Wasnt apple fined for slowing down iphones?

Looks like the 16gb model is now artificially made obsolete as well - you are supposed to buy the 64gb one.

For slowing down iPhones when the battery was low and not telling the user about it.

For slowing down older iPhones

I find the defense of Apple in this case absolutely fascinating.

You know how I can tell that Apple made that change not with the user in mind?

By the fact that until a 3rd party proved Apple was throttling older phones, Apple never publicly stated they were doing this. I’m fact, they vehemently denied it.

I saw this on a personal level, where my mother who took 2 trips abroad about a year apart, with the same phone (and she had a lot of disk space in both trips and she hardly installs any apps) found the phone an absolute pleasure to take pictures during the first trip, kept missing shots while waiting for the camera app to load in the second one.

And on taking the phone to the Genius Bar multiple times, she was gaslighted each time as the Genius showed her their diagnostic results which showed that no, her phone was in perfect health (minus a slight degradation in battery life).

Of course, a few months later the entire world learnt that, in fact, her phone had slowed down, and Apple was lying. What’s interesting is that Apple diagnostics tools (which should probably have a speed test?) also reported everything as being just fine.

Stop trying to spin it Apple's illegal behavior. The change was clearly unnecessary because once they rolled it back the phones kept on functioning just fine.

Modern hardware can and should last ten years. Accept no excuses.

For slowing down iPhones that would otherwise shut off due to degraded battery health, without notifying users.

It was a measure to increase product longevity (e.g a slow phone was seen as better than a phone that shut off randomly when voltage dropped)

If the goal was to increase product longevity why did Apple only admit this wonderful measure only after it was proven by a 3rd party?

If this was such an altruistic measure why would the geniuses at the Genius Bar deny that my mothers phone had slowed down and throw diagnostic tests at our faces? Why was the exasperated Genius, who could clearly tell that the phone was slow indeed but his successful diagnostics meant there was nothing he can do, reduced to swiping up all the apps on the phone to kill them, when we both knew that if iOS was working properly that should do nothing?

It was also a measure that forced some users to upgrade.

My iPhone 5 got so slow and Apple was so unhelpful that I ended up replacing it. That was my first and last iPhone.

The battery that they made not replaceable. Interesting how it all fits together.

It is replaceable, and pretty cheap to get replaced at Apple too. I think it was like $29 or something to replace?

But even without Apple, that particular battery was pretty easy to replace

The $29 battery replacement program was only introduced after Apple was sued: https://www.macworld.com/article/230860/iphone-29-battery-re...

Also: users were not warned about this "feature", many (most?) didn't know why their phones slowed down, and there was no way to disable the behaviour.

Ah yeah, it was $50 before it was dropped to $29.

And I already mentioned in my initial comment that they didn't notify users. That's what the lawsuit in France was over, the lack of notice. I believe an OS update did eventually let users switch off the behaviour, and view their battery health.

It is replaceable. It's just not replaceable without a screwdriver.

why not just allow replacing batteries like phones did before?... seems like a dumb excuses to get people to buy a phone every year, make it impossible to replace the parts and slow down the phone. glue, solder, hardware lock parts etc etc until the phone is not even your property anymore.

the battery in that series of phones was replaceable quite easily, if you felt comfortable opening up the phone.

Next time it happens, can you try running heap(1) against it? It might help point out where that memory is going.

Just happened again [0] and no amount of app killing helps.

I ran heap(1) on WindowServer [1] but there's nothing in there standing out so maybe this is a red herring.

[0] https://cln.sh/A7YPLN

[1] https://gist.github.com/772687dba65a35cca8cd707fcfda99c0

Not a red herring, just confirming it wasn't a normal application memory leak (it's not, the malloc usage is fine–I think you're hitting the same issue as is mentioned in this article). The next step I would do is run sudo footprint $(pgrep WindowServer), optionally with -v to give you a really detailed list of why the footprint is so high.

Great to see you pop up on HN. I discovered Lunar a couple of weeks ago after wondering whether something like it existed and it's been a great tool so far. Solves one thing and solves it well. Keep up the great work!

Thank you for the kind words! I’m always happy to see that the hard work that goes into this app is appreciated and useful.

Call Apple support as your experience is different than other people's. No memory problems here at all.

Apple support is generally not going to be able to help you solve software bugs.

Maybe try disabling TrueTone? Also, in Accessibility > Display try enabling Reduce transparency.

I’m probably dumb and wrong, but that 80GB is likely virtual memory and not a great indication of actual RAM used.

It is virtual memory, the real memory size is usually sub 1GB. But I just can’t find any other culprit, and killing WindowServer is the only thing that helps.

I have no idea how to troubleshoot this and don’t really have time for it when working on hotfixes, I just want to get back in a state where I’m not facing an imminent system lock up where I can’t even save my recent work.

Do you tint your mouse cursor (new Monterey accessibility setting)? I noticed this in the last handful of developer betas, and it definitely shipped out in 12.0.1: https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=1735345

Although that particular issue will show in application footprint, not WindowServer. I see WindowServer buildup on one of my M1s still, even in 12.1 beta :(

Nope, never used that setting. I just opened Accessibility and hit reset on the pointer colors again just to be sure.

This is a windows technique, but presumably something similar might be available on mac too:


Activity Monitor shows a "memory footprint", rather than just a simple sum of virtual memory usage. Among other things, this number splits memory usage for resources shared across multiple processes (e.g. system libraries) and attributes a fraction to each of them.

I've had similar problems.. See my sibling comment, there's a chance it may be helpful!

Off topic but I love Lunar. Thanks!

I switch over to safari for the time being and no issues.

Where do you see the 64GB option?

The choice becomes available if you select M1 Max as the CPU: https://cln.sh/A3TcaP

Ah, interesting, the page I wound up on did not have selectable elements.

I feel like I'm a bizarro world, because I don't get this stuff: crashes, memory leaks, and so on.

I use: VScode, Idea, iTerm2 (with x86 brew), Logic (and lots of plugins), FCPX, Live (x86, and lots of plugins), Slack, Reeder, MS Office, Spotify, Chrome and other stuff. MBP M1 16GB.

What I do get, is some bluetooth issues (e.g. affecting the mouse cursor. If you start the bluetooth deadmon it fixes itself for a day or so.

I love that Apple hasn’t been able to fix their Bluetooth bugs in forever. I always hope they’ll be fixed with the next OS version, maybe the next MacBook, maybe the next iPhone.

Nope. My AirPods have regular issues and my Magic Mouse regularly disconnects.

I hoped my next M1 would solve it. Guess not.

I don't know that it's a Mac thing - I get similar Bluetooth issues on Windows. Honestly, Bluetooth just isn't that good.

The best software stack for bluetooth audio is the one provided by Pipewire on Linux.

I switched after seeing PRs improving Pulseaudio get shot down pretty dismissively, and iirc the would-be contributor getting fed up, abandoning it because well whatever, Pipewire.

But actually, since switching the AV sync is off using my Bluetooth earphones, at least in Firefox.

Curiously, I can fix it with latency adjustment in pavucontrol, but it only has an affect when the 'advanced' drop down is revealed in that tab of the menu. Close it, and it's off again. Open, and the value has persisted, and it works again. Haven't really dug into that because I've been hoping the (presumably) underlying Pipewire issue will be fixed.

Oof, I saw that PR drama too (~half of bluetooth headsets were broken, PR fixed it, got ignored for months despite loads of 3rd party attention, author got heated, maintainers show up very interested in swinging their CoC around but very uninterested in merging the fix, author gave up and left for pipewire).

Pulse is still broken a year later, pipewire is fixed.

So it goes.

Pipewire is not written by or maintained by the same people who did PulseAudio. Thus, such experience likely does not carry over.

That is not to say Pipewire could not also be a problem, but I haven't encountered such complaints about it.

Does it handle headsets correctly?

I finally figured out how to get bluetooth headsets to work correctly on my desktop: output to 3.5mm, 3.5mm to dedicated bluetooth transmitter.

Throw hardware at the software problem, because software absolutely cannot be trusted not to foul this up. Not Windows, not linux, not pipewire, not pulse, none of it. Evidently not mac either, though I've personally never had trouble with bluetooth on mac. Bluetooth is 23 years old and its flagship application is still completely broken across huge swaths of the client/server compatibility matrix.

Asking the real questions here.

I finally gave up on using an XPS15 with Ubuntu because I could not get over the fact it cannot do high quality bi-direction bluetooth audio.

Edit: Looks like it does offer some improvments over pulseaudio: https://www.redpill-linpro.com/techblog/2021/05/31/better-bl....

Pipewire for some reason insists on using GTK4 for its UI though, which hangs X cold if you use any of the popovers in it. I didn't even know it was possible to hang X like that.

What do you mean by a Pipewire UI? It's a background daemon (or three: pipewire, a session manager, and pipewire-pulse).

EDIT: Perhaps the parent means Helvum, which ldd says links to libgtk-4.so.1 => /usr/lib/libgtk-4.so.1. However, I can't figure out how to open a popover (https://python-gtk-3-tutorial.readthedocs.io/en/latest/popov...) in the app; all I can do is drag to create or break connections.

Try to set up https://github.com/jaakkopasanen/AutoEq impulse responses for headphones, and you _will_ inevitably hang your X. Daemon isn't terribly useful on its own if you can't set it up to do what you need. So anyone considering Pipewire as a "better" alternative to anything should also know, at a minimum, that it's difficult/impossible to uninstall and buggy AF.

To clarify things, PipeWire is an audio daemon, completely unaffiliated with https://github.com/jaakkopasanen/AutoEq which is a set of headphone impulse responses. It just so happens that the recommended way to apply these impulse responses on Linux is EasyEffects, which now depends on both PipeWire and GTK4. Nonetheless, PipeWire is not EasyEffects and not AutoEq, and "Pipewire for some reason insists on using GTK4 for its UI though" is untrue because EasyEffects is not PipeWire's official GUI, and doesn't even come up when I search `pipewire gui`.

I haven't tested EasyEffects. With that in mind, PipeWire is buggy AF for the time being, and I've been working over the past week to clean things up (fixed a few bugs in plasmashell and pipewire so far, but I'm still learning and there's a great deal of bugs I haven't diagnosed and explained to the maintainers, it will probably take weeks longer for me to work through everything, and I'd very much prefer the program was written to handle race conditions and edge cases properly, instead of leaving users to discover bugs and trace the root cause through the labyrinthine IPC-heavy event-driven codebase after the fact).

Their choice to write new code in C at this late date is hard to justify. A bit of abstraction and automation can go a long way.

My guess is that Pipewire is written in C because the author likes C (or at least somewhat dislikes C++). And it has "abstraction"... in the form of hand-baked vtables and observers created out of nested macros, void*, and intrusive linked lists.

An advantage of C is that it comes with a stable ABI, where Rust is unstable and C++ is a subject of conflict (though you can achieve a stable ABI by restricting your external API to C functions, and if you want cross-shared-object virtual calls like Pipewire, you might have to write the same pile of macros as PipeWire, which you were trying to save yourself from). The downsides are memory and type unsafety (surprisingly the only crash I've seen so far is a null pointer dereference, and I haven't hit any obvious memory or type errors), and a complete absence of "vocabulary" or templated types (they've created their own slotmap-like ID allocator but without a generation count resulting in ever-present "logical use-after-frees" in library and application code, and an intrusive linked list which they use even when hashmaps might provide somewhat faster iteration and asymptotically faster search).

I assumed the C ABI, and thus the cobbled-up vtables. Where the author might have used C++ to advantage would be automating other, internal details of the code. There is nothing quite like bugs you don't have because you didn't need to write the code where they would have been, or because you could run code at compile time to generate or at least verify your cobbled-together apparatus.

The saving grace is that it can at any time be switched over to be built with a C++ compiler, and then start to be modernized incrementally.

What you say is true. Unfortunately I don't think you can trivially switch it to a C++ compiler, because they use {[FOO] = ...} initialization.

It would be cool (not necessarily useful, probably not a good use of time) to rewrite it in Rust while keeping the dependency count in the single digits. It would be helpful to contributors to add architectural documentation.

Clang supports it in C++ mode but not GCC sadly :(

C++ has a version of that notation, with minor (and IMHO unnecesssary) restrictions that probably impose no hardship.

C++20 added dot initialization, which has been supported in MSVC/GCC/Clang for over a year now. No released version of the C++ standard supports array index initialization, and jcelerier says Clang but not GCC supports it as an extension.

I use qjackctl as "pipewire UI", works fine

Is that an X issue or a GTK issue? Haven't heard of this before and it sounds scary

> Honestly, Bluetooth just isn't that good.

I think you're right about this. I have a pair of JBL headphones and it will just randomly become completely garbled during a video conference under Windows.

I have to disable/re-enable Bluetooth to "fix" it. It's a mess.

Conversely, I have a couple of Bose QC35, and either one of them works with pretty much any device I tried to pair them with - Windows laptops, Android phones and tablets, and a Chromebook. So perhaps it's a QoI issue?

I've had similar issues with Bose QC35 on Windows. Currently they work -- but the settings are on a knife-edge: all it takes is an unlucky Windows update and I'll spend half a day trying to find the right services and settings to reset/reinstall to get it paired again. (Also, whenever I restart, I have to open the bluetooth troubleshooter to get them paired, though at least that always works.) I blame both Windows and Bose equally, but I also think it's a very difficult protocol to work with.

I think it's not that it isn't "good", it's more that it is an enormously overcomplicated design-by-committee. The spec is really complicated and downright weird in a lot of places. Kind of like they were trying out new academic ideas that weren't really practical.

I'm more familiar with BLE, which is better, but even that has a completely weird "characteristics" protocol that you have to use. Want to send a big blob of data? You have to manually cut it up into 20 byte chunks to send it over "notifications".

It's like they looked at the OSI model and thought "ah yes this looks right! we'll implement all the layers!"

I've had an issue with Windows 10 cutting off the first 0.3-0.8s of any audio that plays over Bluetooth for a while now. It's occurred across entirely different systems with entirely different bluetooth chipsets and entirely different headphones. Nothing is a surefire fix except for keeping a silent audio file playing in the background, which is ridiculous.

The bug isn't that bad if all you use bluetooth headphones for is YouTube, video chat, and music but it makes Anki language learning decks with audio almost unusable.

Anything below Bluetooth 5 is barely usable. The 2.4Ghz freq gets interfered by anything from fluorescent lamps, old Wi-Fi hotspots, old laptops and phones to microwave ovens, and if it's not yours, it's somebody else's. You basically have no control over whether your bluetooth devices get interfered.

I used to have similar problems. It turned out to be Bluetooth congestion. When I relocated to an office away from a window that faced a public street, the problems went away.

Apple is still using Broadcom chips for BT, which might be part of the problem.

Doesn't really make sense for a new CPU/GPU to fix the problem, what you want is for Apple to stick in their own networking cards.

This whole thread is striking a nerve with me since these seem to be all of the issues i had been dealing with since getting a new 16 inch a few weeks back. Specifically "windowserver" and also these bluetooth issues.

See my other comment in this thread about how i solved "windowserver".

Bluetooth issue was a hw proximity issue for me. My CalDigit hub was mounted right below my Macbook. I noticed when I moved my MacBook's location (still connected to hub), the bluetooth issue when away.

It's worth a try if you have a powered accessory near your macbook and haven't tried this already, but...

I do still get the issue once in a while, but I can now at least just turn the keyboard/touchpad off/on and it goes back to normal whereas before, it happened all the time.

Once in a while I still have to Shift+Option+"bluetooth menu icon" and reset bluetooth module.

I know these are just work arounds, but at least it allows me to get back to work and only have to deal with it weekly instead of not being able to use bluetooth at all.

Edit: just upgraded to 12.0.1 and noticed Shift+Option+"bluetooth menu icon" to reset bluetooth module is gone!?

It’s probably USB 3.0 frequencies clashing with Bluetooth freqs. Even worse if you’re connected to 2.4Ghz wifi since it’s the same frequency Bluetooth uses.

Same here - I've been slamming my 13" M1 base model (8gb ram, 512 gb storage) and it's a beast of a machine. I throw a lot at it for work every day - multiple browsers open, back-end processes, the UI app, pgAdmin and postgres both running locally...it crushes everything I throw at it, with great battery life too.

Only issue I've seen with it is some bluetooth flakiness sometimes the way you mentioned. Other than that, it's been a rock solid device and the only reason I haven't upgraded to one of the new MBPs despite really wanting one...is because so far I haven't been able to justify it yet considering how rock solid the M1 has been!

I find all three (Linux, MacOS and Windows) to be fairly stable. It's been many many years since I've run into either BSOD on Windows or the beach ball of death on Mac.

My guess is faulty hardware. I've had plenty of those on the 2018 MBP (keyboard getting stuck, bulging battery and dead zones on touchbar). Waiting to see if the QC is better with new M1 Pros before buying.

I have had really bad issues with bluetooth mice on my M1 macbook, the lag is so bad. Bluetooth is basically unusable for me so I had to switch to the logitech unifying receiver which has been flawless. This seems to be related to using airpods at the same time.

Otherwise I have been very happy with the laptop.

Both in this article and other comments here, people mention Safari being a factor. It sounds like this is likely related to the browser. I noticed that you're using Chrome. I use a variety of browsers but rarely Safari, and I don't have any of these issues either.

I saw in a screenshot in this thread Safari with 15GB or so for a single page (and I think it was just some newsite or such)?

That sounds like a big bug and a very possible cause.

It is always Safari.

When porting our audio plug-ins to Big Sur we had to avoid some APIs that were running fine for years, because of new memory leaks.

>What I do get, is some bluetooth issues (e.g. affecting the mouse cursor. If you start the bluetooth deadmon it fixes itself for a day or so.

Can you elaborate on this? I think i was hitting this as well. Specifically when I scroll or type, it "halts" for a split second every other second. Originally I thought it was a video card failing or something but after a long time I finally traced it to Bluetooth. Since then I have been using wired connection on my keyboard and mouse.

What do you mean by "If you start the bluetooth deadmon"

In my case it's visible in the mouse (the keyboard is wired, mechanical), and it's like you describe, at certain points there is laginess. After some time, it's like the mouse slows down, and lags more.

I've heard this happens when you have some USB-C hubs attached, which I do. Not sure what the connection is -- but I think my Anker hub does causes this.

>What do you mean by "If you start the bluetooth deadmon"

Sorry, I meant: "if you restart the bluetooth daemon", e.g. "sudo pkill bluetoothd".

See my response to you above...

a little unclear if you don't have a hub, or do have an Anker hub, but try moving the Anker hub far away from your Macbook and see if you still have the bluetooth issue. You need a USB cable (depending on what's the hub is you might need a 3.1 Gen2) long enough.

For me it was a hardware proximity issue. Powered external devices interfering with the Mac's bluetooth.

The cursor thing is frustrating. When it lags it makes me suspect someone has a hidden instance of VNC open watching my screen. Perhaps they do.

My Bluetooth issues are clearly hardware related. Out of all machines I have it only on my iMac. Software is almost the same on all Macs.

i have an older macbook pro (only for another week until my new one arrives), and i found switching from iterm2 to kitty improved performance of my computer drastically. i think i have some other HD corruption issues going on, but kitty extended the lifespan of my computer such that i was able to wait for the new pros.

When I get Bluetooth issues, I just power cycle my trackpad and keyboard and that seems to do the trick

Airpods Max are difficult to connect to macbook pros

Get your iPhone away or off can help. It seems they always want to go to the phone first.

You're not in a bizarro world. Most users are pretty happy with their M1 Macs (myself included) and HN just tends to upvote anything anti-apple even if it's an isolated experience.

I'd wager most people on this thread do not actually own an m1 Mac.

My experience (and that of others I know that have them) has been nothing but stellar.

Please don't make spurious generalizations about the community—these images are nearly all in the eye of the beholder, i.e. people with the opposite preferences to yours see the community exactly the opposite way (and make similarly spurious generalizations about HN favoring Apple or whatever $BigCo they don't personally care for).

Because such generalizations are just encodings of personal likes/dislikes in the form of general claims, they lead to lame discussion.




I don't think it's really anti-Apple, but these articles do tend to take what seem likely to be very isolated events and present them as widespread, systemic issues.

I have absolutely no doubt that this person is having bad memory leaks (though their narrative about SoC memory or other elements seem unlikely to play any part whatsoever). Software has faults, and something in their environment or stack is causing problems. I have an M1 Mac and used every beta of Monterey, and now the release, and have had zero problems. Like nothing at all. I use XCode, IntelliJ, Chrome, Safari, Excel, Logic Pro among others all day long, heavily. Loads of other people seem to be having no problem with their systems. Eh.

If something has literally millions of users, saying "{X} happens" will invariably draw out someone with a similar anecdote, but that doesn't mean it happens to everyone, or even a significant minority. Some unique combination of factors is yielding a poor user experience, and hopefully there is a resolution, but it just doesn't seem likely that it's widespread.

elephant in the room for all these sort of articles it the law of large numbers. Sell a couple million devices with a defect that affects .1% of people and it'll be a thing for 1,000s of folk. And apple sells 10s of millions.

I’m generally happy with my Mac products, but I’ve also gone through long periods where my Mac would crash multiple times per week due to serious OS bugs.

Most recently, the Thunderbolt 3 issues were responsible for countless hours of lost time rebooting my laptop last year, and I’m not alone: https://rachelbythebay.com/w/2020/10/03/repro/

The weirdest part was that this occurred with only Apple products connected to my laptop. I couldn’t even blame it on 3rd-party products. It also worked perfectly fine before and after the range of affected MacOS versions. There were many reports of the same issue all over the internet, so I know I wasn’t alone.

Then one day Apple finally fixed the bug and everything was back to normal. But all those months of constant reboots and crashed and failed workarounds left a mark on my overall experience.

So while the Mac experience is generally good, it’s still far from perfect. Weirdly, I’ve had far fewer problems with my Windows system in recent years.

Unfortunately it’s comments and religious defenders like this that allow Apple to get away with selling broken products for years, and then issue recalls for products sold 4-5 years ago when people are not using them anymore, like they’ve done with multiple Mac laptops that had graphics card and screen issues.

Your position is that HN users are anti-apple and lying about this issue, rather than people with no agenda just sharing their experiences?

Claiming most people don't have M1 apple products is also bizarre considering almost all startups are using exclusively macs and we've all been waiting for the this release.

Its not like Apple doesn't release faulty hardware and software. Butterfly keyboard is a good example of faulty hardware and OSX Lion crashed all the time on the Macbook pros with discrete GPUs till Apple patched it.

Im willing to bet this community has a higher percentage of apple users than most others. The number of people claiming to already have an M1 of any kind is surprising, especially considering Ive received a macbook pro for every single software engineering job Ive ever had.

> HN just tends to upvote anything anti-apple even if it's an isolated experience

Why do I see so many pro-Apple posts then? And even posts directly pointing to an Apple ad.

I think the main reason why these stories are brought up for Apple so much is because it has this persistent "things just work" narrative that a lot of people buy into when they decide to pay the Apple premium. When it turns out to not be true, it stings more than similar issues on e.g. Windows or Android, simply because the expectations there aren't that rosy to begin with.

I own a M1 8 gb and It has to go through multiple reboots/day with lot of open tabs/apps on Monterey

Was it doing that before Monterey? I haven't upgraded to Monterey yet because I want to avoid any bugs that haven't been ironed out yet...so far my M1 8gb has been excellent and if those issues are introduced by Monterey then I may just delay upgraading until next year sometime.

Not sure because I quickly upgraded it and I haven't a lot of open pages/process before

Yep. I bought my M1 13" (with 8gb of ram) when it launched and it's easily the best laptop I've purchased. I want the 16" with the M1 Max because it looks incredible but so far the M1 13" has chewed through everything I've thrown at it, and I use it heavily every single day. Fantastic laptop.

Just a wild guess, but I imagine most users are not pro users and don't even notice if a process leaks memory.

My Mac used to expose the same kind of problems, that's why I switched to Linux on non Apple laptops years ago.

My feeling was that the quality of the OS went down constantly and apparently it's not coming back with newer releases.

Same here. My 16-inch M1 has been a dream so far.

Worth a read if you ever wonder why certain people on here are oddly fixated on the platforms other people are using. (Especially when they have no clue what you even do with your hardware.)


HN has more Apple "fans" than "haters". And they will downvote anything bad about Apple lol

Guidelines | FAQ | Lists | API | Security | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact