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Old 01-08-2013, 11:54 AM   #1
Peterson50
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Macbook Air 2012 with 4 Gigs of Ram

How many of you guys are able to work with 4 Gigs of ram in the 2012 macbook air. I purchased it on a whim to replace my late 2008 macbook. But on an impulse purchased the unit with 4Gigs instead of the 8. Me and my partner provide consulting support for a few clients so we need to use vmware with a few OS (Suse, Win7, OSX). I wish I had purchased the 8, just curious how many are able to be completely productive with the 4?

Allocating 1Gig or 1.5 works fine with (Suse and Win7). I upgraded my macbook 2008 with SSD and 8 Gigs of ram and now it flies, so much I use it more than my air and am toying with idea of selling air and wait a few months to add some funds and get the 8Gig model.

Just curious how many guys toy around with several apps and a virtual machine open on a regular basis with 4 gigs of ram on an Air
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Old 01-08-2013, 02:26 PM   #2
hayne
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I don't think it makes much difference whether it's an Air or not. With any Mac where you are running a virtual machine (or any other application that takes up lots of memory), you will do better with more than 4 GB of RAM. Virtual machines are more RAM-needy than other applications since they usually use "wired" memory - which reserves the RAM for their use only and doesn't allow it to be swapped out to disk when memory gets low.

I used a MacBook Pro with 4GB of RAM for several years and I used VirtualBox (with Windows XP). It often had a lot of page-outs (swapping to disk) when I used other memory-hungry apps at the same time. I'm much happier now on my new MacBook Pro where I sprung for 16 GB of RAM - I never have page-outs unless I am doing something extremely memory-intensive (like calculating billions of numbers and keeping them all in memory).

BTW, I have been using "iStat Menus" for a few weeks now and can heartily recommend it. It gives you a good view of how much memory and CPU is being used and lists the top 5 resource-consuming applications for each.
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Old 01-08-2013, 03:53 PM   #3
onceagain
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I bought one for my wife - but it would not be usable for me. These days, it seems rather silly to have less than 16GB of RAM for the purposes you describe. Just get a 13" MBP and put 16GB in it and be done with it.
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Old 01-08-2013, 04:04 PM   #4
trevor
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Quote:
Originally Posted by onceagain
These days, it seems rather silly to have less than 16GB of RAM for the purposes you describe.

I don't disagree, but I'll just note that my first computer had 3583 bytes free.

Trevor
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Old 01-08-2013, 05:42 PM   #5
onceagain
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trevor
I don't disagree, but I'll just note that my first computer had 3583 bytes free.

Trevor

Well, you know..........if we want go go back in time to days long since gone, you have to constrain yourself to what you were doing with the equipment available (:
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Old 01-08-2013, 09:17 PM   #6
Peterson50
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Hey Haynes, I have used stat for quite some time, the newer interface is great, have it running on both air and macbook.

btw trevor you must have been using basic on an original IBM PC/XT with (drool) dual 5.25 disk drives, very very speedy.

I may retire the air early for next one with perhaps 16gigs of ram which is perfect. But for right now I use the macbook as my desktop and the air as my portable so it works out fine.
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Old 01-08-2013, 09:20 PM   #7
Peterson50
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BTW I can't beat the 7hr battery life on the air, I can go for most of the day on it. Oh well next time live and learn, get the 8 or 16 or 32.

"But Captain I'm giving it all I've got"
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Old 01-08-2013, 09:57 PM   #8
anthlover
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I run VMs extensively SSD and 8 to 16GB of ram really help. The Guest OS choice and Apps running on have an effect also. 4GB ad Use XP with simple Aps you can get away with it fine as long as you leave other Mac Aps closed. User larger programs and its still fine but very sensitive to mac aps running.

Other OS with or with out aps would do much better with more ram.

You can outfit a bast Macbook Pro 13, with a 256GB or 512 GB SSD and 16GB of ram and it will Fly. Even better a 15 Inch Macbook Pro or Retina.
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Old 01-09-2013, 10:42 AM   #9
trevor
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Peterson50
btw trevor you must have been using basic on an original IBM PC/XT with (drool) dual 5.25 disk drives, very very speedy.

My apologies in advance for adding to the noise, rather than the signal.

Well, I was using BASIC, yes. But if you follow the link above you'll see the beginning screen for a Commodore Vic-20. And I didn't have a 5.25" drive for it, I used it with a cassette drive. When I upgraded later to the Commodore 64, then I got their incredibly slow 5.25" disc drive.

The IBM PC/XT was released later, in 1983, the Vic-20 two years earlier, in 1981 (in the US; it was released in 1980 in Japan).

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Old 01-09-2013, 11:23 AM   #10
Peterson50
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I enjoy the noise, my first play was with a timex sinclair and then a Tandy (RadioShack), I recall using cassette drive with each.

BTW I understand the caveat of using virtual machines with only 4 gigs of ram and all that stuff. (I have a new mini with 16 gigs and getting ready to install ssd into it, but use the laptops more)

I was just curious how many people actually made it work with their Air as their only machine etc.

Thanks
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Old 01-09-2013, 03:55 PM   #11
onceagain
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anthlover
You can outfit a bast Macbook Pro 13, with a 256GB or 512 GB SSD and 16GB of ram and it will Fly.

Well, I dunno about "fly", but it does OK. I have an OWC 6G 480GB SSD and 16GB of RAM in my mid-2012 13", and it does OK. But with a sub 4-hour battery life, it is lacking, relative to the MBA. If you're going to fly, better make sure it is a short flight (:
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Old 01-09-2013, 07:18 PM   #12
anthlover
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Helium

Perhaps Helium then Well the 15 Quad Core would naturally be faster still.
Once do you run VMs or general use?
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Old 01-09-2013, 08:34 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by anthlover
Once do you run VMs or general use?

I run a Windows 7 VM under Oracle's Virtual Box, occasionally, when I have to use Visio, or some other program that is Windows-only. Hardware Performance wise, no issues. Software wise, Visio sucks the big one.
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Old 01-09-2013, 09:03 PM   #14
hayne
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Quote:
Originally Posted by onceagain
Software wise, Visio sucks the big one.

Note that the Pro version of OmniGraffle (a Mac program) can read and write Visio files:
http://www.omnigroup.com/products/omnigraffle/support/
And you can get a free trial version of OmniGraffle from their web site.
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Old 01-09-2013, 09:27 PM   #15
anthlover
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Wow

No more need to use an interchange format, or am I remembering a prior version incorrectly.
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Old 01-09-2013, 10:31 PM   #16
onceagain
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hayne
Note that the Pro version of OmniGraffle (a Mac program) can read and write Visio files:
http://www.omnigroup.com/products/omnigraffle/support/
And you can get a free trial version of OmniGraffle from their web site.

It's a lie.

I own OG Pro. Yes, it can read Visio files. Yes, it can write Visio files. However, it does such a horrible pathetic job at it that I can't believe they even claim it as a feature.

In my experience, it does OK (but not perfect) at reading the files - but really, that's not the trick. The trick is to output something that looks even remotely acceptable in Visio, and I have yet to be successful at that and I have tried all of its export formats. Most recently today, I couldn't even get a BASIC diagram to export in anything resembling something acceptable - I had to redo it nearly from scratch with Visio.

I like OGP (although I think its interface and esp. its keyboard shortcuts suck), it makes GREAT looking diagrams that plot flawlessly - but its Visio support completely sucks. On that note - if it supported intelligent BPMN diagrams, that would be a huge plus.

FWIW, its crappy Visio support is a chief complaint among users of OGP.
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