Mac Pro :: Common Apps Takes A Lot Of Time To Load

Jun 23, 2010

Maybe I expect too much, or need to learn about some networking or other tweaks to help things along, but I feel like my Mac Pro has disappointing performance.

I've got an Early 2008 Mac Pro, dual quad core Intel Xeon 2.8 GHz processors, 12 GB of memory, 1.6 GHz bus, gigabit ethernet to a 25Mbps/25Mbps fiber (Fios) connection, have run namebench to find the fastest name servers possible, and I still feel like my Mac Pro is slow. Just popped in a 500GB Momentus XT Hybrid Drive to replace the 78Mbs 320GB drive that came stock to help things along. Helped speed boot times and common app load times a lot, but after things are loaded, not much is notably faster.

OK, so I let Firefox get out of hand sometimes and I have 100+ open tabs, 4 open browsers (and sometimes 2 or 3 versions of Firefox running different profiles) -- Firefox, Opera, Chrome, Safari -- ssh tunnels and sessions galore, Evernote, Time Machine, and VMware running some video monitoring software (Dog Poop Cam -- gonna catch whomever is letting their dog crap in my yard).

Even shutting software hogs down and then trying to play Team Fortress 2, granted at 1920x1200 pushing to limits of the ATI Radeon HD 2600, things are still feeling slow. TF2 in Windows seems much faster and more responsive on the same hardware -- maybe that's just the fault of Steam or Apple's lack of up-to-date drivers, but frustrating nonetheless.

Load average is usually 0.5 to 1.0, sometimes reaching 2.0 (full load would be 8.0), memory usage is at 50-60%, and disk activity is reasonable. What is wrong? What can I tweak to improve things? Are my expectations simply too high?

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[url]...

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