How to Use Activity Monitor

How to use Activity Monitor to make your Mac faster

Or you can use Spotlight to open it. Simply press the Command and Space keys and type activity monitor. You may force close applications or processes from Activity Monitor.

You may want to do this if your Mac becomes unresponsive. You may want to close down CPU-hungry processes. Please do not quit processes or applications if you are not sure. Some may not be safe to quit.

You may want terminate frozen and unresponsive apps or websites. If you terminate an app, you may lose unsaved data.

You will see more information at the bottom:. This tap lets you see how memory is being used. Like the CPU tab, more information is available at the bottom:.


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This tab lets you see the amount of data that each process reads reads in and writes writes out. You can also see a disk activity graph in your Dock. This lets you see how much data your computer is receiving and sending. The Mac comes equipped with a number of apps, including Safari, Mail, Photos, Calendar, Contacts, and many more, that are used every day by most Mac users.

Many third-party developers have created very useful utilities that either supplement an existing Apple utility or provide new capabilities or services. You can also set the Dock icon to display CPU usage and network traffic.

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How To View And Kill Processes on your Mac

Activity Monitor provides access to each category through a tab interface on its toolbar. Ever wonder which app is hogging your CPU resources, making your Mac feel sluggish? Activity Monitor can tell you with the click of the CPU tab, letting you know the percentage of CPU power being used, how much CPU time a particular app is using, and a number of other useful bits of information. Activity Monitor can also let you know how your memory is being used, and can be used to help you decide whether additional memory would be helpful.

And finally, the Network tab lets you know which apps are network hogs; it also provides an overall look at network performance. Activity Monitor can also kill apps and processes that are running, as well as display information about a running app, including which files are currently in use. In addition, Activity Monitor includes a number of diagnostics that can help pinpoint problems with your Mac, specifically, System Diagnostics and Spotlight Diagnostics.

Most of these diagnostic reports are geared toward helping developers and Apple support personnel troubleshoot problems, either with your Mac or a specific app. If you would like to try out the diagnostics, open Activity Monitor, then click on the gear menu and select Run System Diagnostics. Once the diagnostics are completed, a Finder window will open and show you a zipped file that, when expanded, contains a number of text files showing the results of all the diagnostics that were run.

How to Use Activity Monitor to Troubleshoot Problems on a Mac

If you need to kill a runaway process, simply select the process from the list, and then click the kill button it looks like an X in a stop sign. Besides its ability to erase, format, and partition storage devices , Disk Utility can also be an integral part of your Mac maintenance routines, with its ability to verify drives and repair common disk issues.

Audio MIDI Setup Sure, your Mac has a Sound preference pane that lets you control basic sound stuff, such as volume and balance, and select an input source or output destination; it even lets you assign alert sound effects. This utility is filled with options that can be used to control sound input and output for both built-in sound devices and external sound processing equipment you may be using with your Mac.

How To View And Kill Processes on your Mac

You can set sampling rates for devices to improve quality or to decrease the amount of data being generated, and use the Configure Speakers utility to create a multi-channel listening environment. This utility will allow you to assign an audio channel to any speaker connected to your Mac. You can also create aggregate devices that allow you to group two or more devices to work together, such as a set of microphones and a headset for monitoring.

Another available option is to create multi-output devices. This allows you to assign the same source to play through two or more devices at the same time. I use this capability to send audio to multiple speakers around the house. If you have MIDI devices, this is the utility to use to add, remove, and test them.