The ‘Application Memory’ Error: What to Do if You Get It on Your Mac

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Photo: H_Ko (Shutterstock) – It might just be a glitch, or it could be a long-standing issue with little RAM. “Your system has run out of application memory” is hardly a reassuring warning. As if your Mac is warning you “the end is near,” it’s chilly and dark. It’s a relief to know that the end isn’t near, but getting this notification on your computer is still unsettling. It might be a bug, or it could be a long-term issue that you need to keep an eye on. Here, we’ll look at how to distinguish between the various concerns.

The amount of RAM in your Mac is critical to seeing this message

Let’s begin with a simple explanation for those who aren’t familiar with the topic: Your Mac’s RAM capacity is fixed (random access memory). This RAM enables your computer to perform numerous applications and tasks simultaneously. Memory (RAM) is a computer’s ability to do several tasks simultaneously; the more RAM you have, the more tasks your computer can perform. It’s a piece of cake.

Mac OS X normally performs a fantastic job of managing RAM, so multitasking shouldn’t be a problem for you. However, there are times when the system is pushed too far. This application memory alert is triggered if there are more programs running than the system has available RAM.

App memory alert issues are occurring even on Mac computers with lots of RAM. Running software like Photoshop or Final Cut Pro on a Mac with 16, 32, or 64 GB of RAM should be a breeze. Despite this, Macs of all sorts are receiving this message while performing actions that should be completed without a hitch. Older Macs, as well as newer models, are affected by this vulnerability.

For many Macs, a software flaw is to blame

System memory use for these programs is also very high. Some programs are using terabytes of memory at an alarming rate. Apple’s Pages and Keynote programs, according to 9to5Mac, are using up to 90 GB of memory or more. Seeing that there have been several reports of memory hogging in identical fashion, this implies a software flaw is at the root of the problem.

Most occurrences are detected on Macs running macOS Monterey, despite reports of it occurring on previous models of the operating system. It’s very probable that Apple will release a fix for this bug in the near future.

To determine if the notice is a bug or a real one

To be clear, this isn’t just a bug; it’s also a feature. It’s there for a reason; if you run out of program memory, you’ll need to terminate apps to restart your computer. However, if you see this message, it’s impossible to tell if it’s real or if it’s caused by a glitch.

Look out for how much memory the software consumes as the most important clue. Generally speaking, most programs will consume MBs of memory, or perhaps a few GBs. It’s possible that your Mac is infected with this issue if any programs are taking more than a few gigabytes of RAM for no apparent reason. It is possible, though, that you have just ran out of program memory. Some programs might take a lot of memory and require a large amount of storage space. This is why we’re focusing on the fact that these warnings are harming consumers during routine use.

When this notice is real, it tends to target Macs with limited RAM. Alerts like this may be familiar if you’re using a MacBook Air with just 4 GB of RAM. If your PC is running memory-intensive apps like Google Chrome, you’ll be straining it if your RAM isn’t at least eight gigabytes; any less RAM will put you at risk.

Boost your Mac’s memory if you can

You may be able to upgrade your RAM in some instances. If your Mac is suitable for a RAM upgrade, you should take advantage of this opportunity. These irritating circumstances may be avoided and more processes can be executed at once if you increase the system RAM.

Looking up your Mac is the only method to know for sure whether or not you can increase the RAM capacity. If you’re looking for a list of compatible computers and instructions on how to add extra RAM to your iMac, MacBook, or Mac mini, you can find them here. Unless you find your Mac mentioned on one of these pages, you’re out of luck when it comes to upgrading your RAM. For a Mac mini, Apple clearly states which models cannot be upgraded, rather than excluding them from the list.

In recent years, Apple’s design philosophy has led to this undesirable side-effect. Components like RAM are soldered to the motherboard rather than being user-accessible and replaceable, making upgrades difficult. That’s OK if your Mac has enough RAM, but there’s no way to offer an additional boost to older Macs that are struggling to keep up.

The greatest thing you can do for a low-RAM Mac is to limit the number of programs you have open at once. Minimize the number of browser windows (particularly in Chrome) and only leave open programs that you’re actively using. It’s a hassle, but it’s preferable to constantly encountering program memory notifications.