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M1 Mac owners are experiencing extremely high SSD writes over short periods of time, likely thanks to aggressive swap

just_dave

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On 2/20/2021 at 2:11 AM, Blade of Grass said:

I don't have an M1 Mac, but I do have a late-2016 MBP (the first with Touch Bar) with a 1TB SSD that I use as a daily. 

 

Screen Shot 2021-02-19 at 8.00.08 PM.png

 

My current uptime is 6 days 5:23, and currently:

Screen Shot 2021-02-19 at 8.00.54 PM.png

350GB seems like a lot of data, I don't think more than 50GB can be from stuff I've been doing specifically. 

 

So to summarize, after writing to the drive just over 75x, the drive is reporting having 100% of spare available and only having used 2% of its life (I think that's what Percent Used means? can't be storage since I have over half the drive full). 

 

It does seem like it's using a lot of writes--perhaps a bug in the new version of MacOS? But realistically, if 75x writes is 2% of life, then my drive is projected to last ~3750 TB, which at even an accelerated 125TB/yr (assuming it's not a bug), is like ~30yrs of usage. 

 

I can't imagine Apple put shit SSDs in the new laptops that have worse endurance then their old tech. 

350GB is nothing. I mean, most drives can survive at least 500TB of writes, better ones over 1PB and some newer ones allegedly over 3PB. With 350GB, you've barely reached 1/3 of 1TB. You could use up 1TB every year and it would still last almost 500 years. Which is just bonkers.

 

I'm running 2TB Samsung 850 Pro which is quite old now, have bought it pretty much when it came out years ago. I'm not babysitting it at all, in fact I dropped write anxiety after like a year of owning it and I just treat it like I'd any drive. It's my main drive that runs OS and all the data like games and programs. Regular HDD is just for mass data hoarding. And I've only used up 35TB of writes. These drives did over 1PB in unofficial torture tests. There is just no way I'll ever wear it with normal use.

 

With M1 Macs, it's a bit worrying that they made so much writes in half a year. but I wonder if it'll be an actual problem for any of the users, even those who stick with them for many years.

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3 hours ago, RejZoR said:

350GB is nothing. I mean, most drives can survive at least 500TB of writes, better ones over 1PB and some newer ones allegedly over 3PB. With 350GB, you've barely reached 1/3 of 1TB. You could use up 1TB every year and it would still last almost 500 years. Which is just bonkers.

I don't think you've read that properly, that's 350GB in 6 days not in total. Total device writes is 75.3TB.

 

3 hours ago, RejZoR said:

With M1 Macs, it's a bit worrying that they made so much writes in half a year. but I wonder if it'll be an actual problem for any of the users, even those who stick with them for many years.

It doesn't look like it has anything to do with M1, it looks like it's just the more recent Mac OS versions that are the cause.

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21 minutes ago, leadeater said:

It doesn't look like it has anything to do with M1, it looks like it's just the more recent Mac OS versions that are the cause.

Although it's important to note that prior to this the mac mini had replaceable storage iirc so in a sense the M1 is worse off for this than previous models.

 

The old macbook was trash anyway so who cares 🤪

Don't ask to ask, just ask... please 🤨

sudo chmod -R 000 /*

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On 2/20/2021 at 2:12 PM, NunoLava1998 said:

I have an M1 Mac (8/256) and this seems like a horribly designed swap algorithm more than anything. The SMART data is accurate and in line with what Activity Monitor shows.

If you keep a RAM-intensive application open (such as a game or a video-editing application) and it's kept in swap, it will write far more than it needs to. You could keep a more intensive application running, doing absolutely nothing at all (open but idle), and it will use your disk at 100-200MB/s, constantly.

It also doesn't help that macOS absolutely hogs RAM; it uses 1-2GB for 'cached files', you have to Ctrl+Q a program if you want it to actually quit (and free RAM) instead of just hide in the dock, etc.

This results in stupidly high swap usage all-around, and it's why Activity Monitor says I've used 1.1TB of disk in 11 hours when my screen time is 90% Chrome and Discord when all I've done is just kept DaVinci Resolve running.

However, if the SMART endurance data is to be believed, the endurance is around 2PBW for the 250GB.. so it's not too bad.

Based on my use of Chrome and Safari, it seems almost as if macOS writes directly to the SSD, not RAM. So yeah, probably a problem with Big Sur.

 

Don't buy Apple M1 computers with 8GB of RAM

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On 2/18/2021 at 4:44 AM, RejZoR said:

I have laptop with 8GB RAM. And it's in dual channel from factory so technically non upgradable unless I'd swap the whole thing. It's perfectly fine for what I need it which is internet, photos and movies. Ryzen 2500U even has enough grunt to do more demanding tasks, but is essentially non essential, so to speak. I can see someone buying 8GB RAM version if they only need it for such stuff. It's plenty enough for that. And so is storage. Mine came with 256GB of DRAM-less NVe M.2. It's tons for what's needed for. I'd be fine even with 64GB SSD if I'm honest. But no one sells them anyway these days.

I hope you're right. I have a 10900k pc and just got the new macbook pro for use in bed to do stuff on internet/check email. the swap usage has me concerned but only apple.com sales the 16gb models. I don't want to ship a macbook, so I bought the base model when I saw one in stock. they sell out quick.

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On 2/21/2021 at 3:55 AM, Sauron said:

Although it's important to note that prior to this the mac mini had replaceable storage iirc so in a sense the M1 is worse off for this than previous models.

 

The old macbook was trash anyway so who cares 🤪

If I recall, a number of drives possess a small amount of SLC memory as a cache. If that’s the case for these M1 MacBooks (assuming anyone can actually find out), wouldn’t the high writes be inconsequential to the device’s lifespan?

My eyes see the past…

My camera lens sees the present…

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4 hours ago, Zodiark1593 said:

If I recall, a number of drives possess a small amount of SLC memory as a cache. If that’s the case for these M1 MacBooks (assuming anyone can actually find out), wouldn’t the high writes be inconsequential to the device’s lifespan?

Diagnostics tools have shown significant reductions to the drives' lifespan, can't really say if the flash they use is any more or less prone to that than that in "regular" drives.

Don't ask to ask, just ask... please 🤨

sudo chmod -R 000 /*

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UPDATE: Blender contributed roughly half of the numbers. Rendering tasks can be a torture for $999 laptop.

 

3 weeks old MBA M1 8GB RAM 256GB SSD. Mix of time-lapse workflow (Lightroom) & GIS (QGIS, Blender).

Screen Shot 2021-02-23 at 9.49.20 AM.png

Edited by xacxac
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1 hour ago, xacxac said:

3 weeks old MBA M1 8GB RAM 256GB SSD. Mix of time-lapse workflow (Lightroom) & GIS (QGIS, Blender).

-snip-

For comparison here's my (bought December 2019) i5 based MacBook Pro 8GB RAM/256GB SSD. Mostly office work/dropbox/lil photoshop and some VMs (mostly off an external SSD now):

8548059_ScreenShot2021-02-23at1_36_57PM.png.93193f0cd1c5d3727138edcd055be3ff.png

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1 hour ago, xacxac said:

3 weeks old MBA M1 8GB RAM 256GB SSD. Mix of time-lapse workflow (Lightroom) & GIS (QGIS, Blender).

Screen Shot 2021-02-23 at 9.49.20 AM.png

I think Lightroom might be trying to eat your poor MacBook 😮

 

Here's a comparison with the same specs; M1, 8GB, 256GB. (Although a Mac Mini) which is exactly 60 days old as of today. This is with what I would consider a "normal" workflow outside the occasional JavaScript project in VS Code. 🙃1066889979_ScreenShot2021-02-23at2_05_15PM.png.396853e0e54d5543a5b8ae54c85ee5c9.png

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22 hours ago, slyfox279 said:

I hope you're right. I have a 10900k pc and just got the new macbook pro for use in bed to do stuff on internet/check email. the swap usage has me concerned but only apple.com sales the 16gb models. I don't want to ship a macbook, so I bought the base model when I saw one in stock. they sell out quick.

Mind me asking why you didn't want to get one shipped from Apple?

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5 hours ago, Zando Bob said:

For comparison here's my (bought December 2019) i5 based MacBook Pro 8GB RAM/256GB SSD. Mostly office work/dropbox/lil photoshop and some VMs (mostly off an external SSD now):

8548059_ScreenShot2021-02-23at1_36_57PM.png.93193f0cd1c5d3727138edcd055be3ff.png

 

5 hours ago, codsane said:

I think Lightroom might be trying to eat your poor MacBook 😮

 

Here's a comparison with the same specs; M1, 8GB, 256GB. (Although a Mac Mini) which is exactly 60 days old as of today. This is with what I would consider a "normal" workflow outside the occasional JavaScript project in VS Code. 🙃1066889979_ScreenShot2021-02-23at2_05_15PM.png.396853e0e54d5543a5b8ae54c85ee5c9.png

 

Blender contributed roughly half of the written & read. There's a set resolution limit (for my project) when 8GB RAM is enough. Beyond that limit, memory requirement ramps up fast & MacOS starting to use swap like crazy. I had renders consumed almost 16GB memory. I should've gone for beefier RAM, but this is a temporary laptop and I plan to upgrade to M1 successor. 

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I wonder if TimeMachine backup's notorious "Local Snap Shots" are causing the extra wear. Localsnapshots happen when you have TimeMachine configured.

 

Even though TimeMachine is typically configured with an external hard drive, it still writes "localnapshots" to the internal drive's free space, which remains free space from most users' point of view.  But regardless, writing to a local snapshot must still write to the SSD even if the user doesn't see it.

 

If localsnapshots are a problem causing excessive SSD wear, it's likely independent of the processor type, though. I think "localsnapshots" became part of TimeMachine around Mojave. Many people complained. It's kind of a privacy issue, too, considering you may think you deleted something but it still resides in a local snap shot.

 

Though the following won't stop writes by localsnapshots, here's how you can see them, assuming you have TimeMachine enabled:

 

In Terminal,

sudo tmutil listlocalsnapshots /

 

delete them if you want:

sudo tmutil deletelocalsnapshots /

 

...but TimeMachine will just recreate new localsnapshots perpetually so this won't reduce TM internal-SSD writes unless you turn off TimeMachine.

 

 

 

 

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2 hours ago, ProjectBox153 said:

Mind me asking why you didn't want to get one shipped from Apple?

After seeing the tons of posts on social media of people having their macbooks stolen in transit and apple telling them " well that sucks and if you get bank to refund we'll block your apple account and the accounts of everyone at your adress." I don't really want to take chance of losing $1500.  Makes me anxious having new iphones shipped every 2 years, but at-least tmobile will send me another while they fight with shipper and talk to police. apple just says we got our money, so go report it to the police not our problem. I like apple products but it seems their costumer care and service is of the you're just one of millions so we don't car. Same way sony is right now with being top dog. Mean really if the shipper the company uses steals the product that seems to be the companies fault not ours. I don't get why they won't ship to thier stores either. I'd more then willingly drive 3 hours to the nearest apple store just to ensure I actually get it. since they won't seems I'm stuck with 8gb model and hope the 10-12gb written per day that it shows iis accurate and won't prematurely kill the macbook. 

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Just now, slyfox279 said:

After seeing the tons of posts on social media of people having their macbooks stolen in transit and apple telling them " well that sucks and if you get bank to refund we'll block your apple account and the accounts of everyone at your adress." I don't really want to take chance of losing $1500.  Makes me anxious having new iphones shipped every 2 years, but at-least tmobile will send me another while they fight with shipper and talk to police. apple just says we got our money, so go report it to the police not our problem. I like apple products but it seems their costumer care and service is of the you're just one of millions so we don't car. Same way sony is right now with being top dog. Mean really if the shipper the company uses steals the product that seems to be the companies fault not ours. I don't get why they won't ship to thier stores either. I'd more then willingly drive 3 hours to the nearest apple store just to ensure I actually get it. since they won't seems I'm stuck with 8gb model and hope the 10-12gb written per day that it shows iis accurate and won't prematurely kill the macbook. 

Hmm, that's literally the opposite of most things I've heard and experienced with Apple. A few years ago they sent me a brand new iPhone 6 to replace my 2 year old unit that died for no reason. I had never had AppleCare or any sort of warranty on the original phone, and they gave me a brand new one. I've had plenty of other experiences like that. 

On the r/mac subreddit there have been cases of broken MacBooks and Apple typically makes everything right. 

They have a strong brand image to protect, so they can't just screw people over for things like that. 

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Older File Server: Yet to be named

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i dont know when i googled is shipping from apple safe, results were all people saying how it got stolen but because the thief marked it as delivered apple refuses to help, suggesting customers got it and are just trying to get another free. I work min wage. only reason I can afford macbook is due to settlement, thus $1500 is a lot and I won't be able to just buy another.

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169GB install only XCODE

 

Fresh installed 1 weak ago no updates

 

also this is a server will be run 24h

 

_________

 

up 7 days 5:57 2 load averages 1.65 1.39 .143

 

 

really.png

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1 hour ago, gabrielcarvfer said:

Antennagate, Bendgate, dead touchscreen IC (PCB flex ripped the solder balls), slowing things down instead of informing the battery should be replaced (they purposely made replacement harder), exploding iPod batteries, borked Mac displays, Nvidia GPUs that kept dying due to overheating, terrible support for Mac Pros, cheapo screws that would break on iMac Pro, notoriously bad butterfly switches...

 

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Thanks for the list of common issues, but that's not what I was talking about. 

Main System: Phobos

AMD Ryzen 7 2700 (8C/16T), ASRock B450 Steel Legend, 16GB G.SKILL Aegis DDR4 3000MHz, AMD Radeon RX 570 4GB (XFX), 960GB Crucial M500, 2TB Seagate BarraCuda, Windows 10 Pro for Workstations/macOS Catalina

 

Secondary System: York

Intel Core i7-2600 (4C/8T), ASUS P8Z68-V/GEN3, 16GB GEIL Enhance Corsa DDR3 1600MHz, Zotac GeForce GTX 550 Ti 1GB, 240GB ADATA Ultimate SU650, Windows 10 Pro for Workstations

 

Older File Server: Yet to be named

Intel Pentium 4 HT (1C/2T), Intel D865GBF, 3GB DDR 400MHz, ATI Radeon HD 4650 1GB (HIS), 80GB WD Caviar, 320GB Hitachi Deskstar, Windows XP Pro SP3, Windows Server 2003 R2

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wish I could help but I don't want to void my warranty and am terrified at downloading anything not straight from apple due to the silver sparrow. Ive got anxiety disorder and this is freaking me out lol. hope the activity monitor is accurate and i'm only writing 10gb a day still thats a lot considering I only use it to surf the web or watch videos. 

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14 hours ago, xacxac said:

UPDATE: Blender contributed roughly half of the numbers. Rendering tasks can be a torture for $999 laptop.

 

3 weeks old MBA M1 8GB RAM 256GB SSD. Mix of time-lapse workflow (Lightroom) & GIS (QGIS, Blender).

Screen Shot 2021-02-23 at 9.49.20 AM.png

I mean this is clearly your own fault, you're doing heavy creative work on a "instagram girl" spec of a machine designed to be used almost like a chromebook

 

Don't buy Apple M1 computers with 8GB of RAM

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5 hours ago, ProjectBox153 said:

Hmm, that's literally the opposite of most things I've heard and experienced with Apple. A few years ago they sent me a brand new iPhone 6 to replace my 2 year old unit that died for no reason. I had never had AppleCare or any sort of warranty on the original phone, and they gave me a brand new one. I've had plenty of other experiences like that. 

On the r/mac subreddit there have been cases of broken MacBooks and Apple typically makes everything right. 

They have a strong brand image to protect, so they can't just screw people over for things like that. 

The comments about the good customer service especially in germany were one of the reasons I bought a mac.

 

Don't buy Apple M1 computers with 8GB of RAM

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On 2/17/2021 at 11:31 AM, leadeater said:

Others are also saying it's just Mac OS and has been doing this the whole time, maybe just Big Sur though. Still for a lot of these figures to be true the device would essentially have to be writing 100MB/s 24/7 for the last 90 days straight. Seriously just need to open System Monitor and look at live disk usage for a bit, if you don't see any write activity high enough and sustained enough then it's not possible to be writing that much data.

Sorry maybe I am late, started feed and just thought that high writing "Blackmagic Disk Speed Test, available from the App Store, is now a Universal App, but returns read and write benchmarks of between 2.7 and 3.5 GB/s, which are very similar to those of a T2 model." You point as moderator 100MB/s 24/7 = 8 640 GB/24h (roughly)... if there is measured benchmark 3.0GB/s throughput than it is 48minutes/24h if you use it like 8h = 480min per day it comes quite feasible. 1/10 on high write, exactly what the OP has suggested. 

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