5 Effective Ways to Lower RAM Usage on Your Mac

Welcome to our article, where we will discuss the ways to lower RAM usage on your Mac. As a Mac user, you may have experienced the frustration of dealing with lagging and slow performance due to high RAM usage. Fear not, as we have compiled a list of 12 steps that you can take to lower the RAM usage on your Mac, resulting in better performance and efficiency.

Steps to Lower RAM Usage on Your Mac

Step 1: Identify the Culprits

The first step to lower RAM usage on your Mac is to identify the applications that are taking up the most memory. Open the Activity Monitor on your Mac, which can be found in the Utilities folder, and click on the Memory tab to see the list of applications and their RAM usage.

Step 2: Quit Unused Applications

If you notice any applications that you are not currently using, quit them to free up the RAM. This can be easily done by right-clicking on the application in the Dock and selecting Quit.

Step 3: Disable Startup Applications

Disable any unnecessary applications that automatically start up with your Mac. Go to System Preferences, click on Users & Groups, and then select your username. Click on the Login Items tab and uncheck any applications that you do not need to start up automatically.

Step 4: Clear Browser Cache

Clear the cache and browsing history on your web browser regularly, especially if you frequently use the internet. This can significantly reduce the amount of RAM that your browser uses.

Step 5: Keep Your Mac Updated

Keep your Mac updated with the latest software updates and security patches. These updates often include bug fixes and performance improvements that can optimize your Mac’s performance.

Step 6: Use Activity Monitor to Force Quit Applications

If an application is not responding and is causing high RAM usage, use the Activity Monitor to force quit it. This can be done by selecting the application in the Activity Monitor, clicking on the X icon, and then selecting Force Quit.

Step 7: Use Lightweight Applications

Consider using lightweight applications instead of heavy ones that use a lot of RAM. For example, instead of using Photoshop, consider using a lightweight image editor like Preview.

Step 8: Use Cloud Storage Services

Use cloud storage services like Dropbox or Google Drive to store your files and data instead of storing them on your Mac. This can significantly reduce the amount of RAM that is used on your Mac.

Step 9: Use an External Hard Drive

Consider using an external hard drive to store large files and data that you do not need to access frequently. This can also free up a significant amount of RAM on your Mac.

Step 10: Reduce Visual Effects

Reduce the visual effects on your Mac, such as animations and transitions, as these can use up quite a bit of RAM. Go to System Preferences, click on Accessibility, and then select Display. Check the Reduce motion and Reduce transparency boxes to reduce visual effects.

Step 11: Upgrade Your RAM

Consider upgrading your RAM if you frequently use applications that require a lot of memory. This can significantly improve your Mac’s performance and reduce the likelihood of experiencing lagging and slow performance.

Step 12: Restart Your Mac

Restart your Mac regularly to clear the system’s memory and reduce RAM usage. This can be done by clicking on the Apple icon in the top left-hand corner of the screen and then selecting Restart.


By following these 12 steps, you can significantly lower the RAM usage on your Mac, resulting in better performance and efficiency. Identifying the applications that are taking up the most memory, quitting unused applications, and disabling auto-startup applications are quick and easy steps that can free up RAM instantly.

Clearing the browser cache, keeping your Mac updated, and using lightweight applications are effective long-term solutions that can help optimize your Mac’s performance. Using cloud storage services and external hard drives to store files and data can also significantly reduce RAM usage.

Reducing visual effects, upgrading your RAM, and restarting your Mac regularly are additional measures that you can take to optimize your Mac’s performance and lower RAM usage.

Tips and Tricks

Tip 1: Use a RAM Optimizer

Consider using a RAM optimizer application like Memory Cleaner to free up RAM space and improve your Mac’s performance.

Tip 2: Uninstall Unused Applications

Uninstall any applications that you no longer use or need to free up space on your Mac’s hard drive.

Tip 3: Use Terminal Commands

Use terminal commands, such as purge, to clear the system’s memory and free up RAM.

Tip 4: Disable Desktop Background

Disable your desktop background to reduce visual effects and lower RAM usage.

Tip 5: Limit Browser Tabs

Limit the number of open tabs in your web browser to reduce RAM usage.

Tip 6: Disable Visual Effects in Microsoft Office

Disable visual effects in Microsoft Office, such as animations and background images, to reduce RAM usage.

Tip 7: Use Safari instead of Chrome

Consider using Safari instead of Chrome as Safari uses less RAM.

Tip 8: Use Third-Party Cleaning Applications

Use third-party cleaning applications, such as CleanMyMac, to remove unnecessary files and free up disk space, which can reduce RAM usage.

Tip 9: Adjust Energy Saver Settings

Adjust the Energy Saver settings on your Mac to conserve energy and reduce RAM usage.

Tip 10: Close Background Applications

Close any background applications that you are not using to reduce RAM usage.

In conclusion, by following the steps and tips mentioned in this article, you can lower the RAM usage on your Mac, resulting in better performance and efficiency. Happy optimizing!

Advantages and Disadvantages of Lowering RAM Usage on Mac


1. Improved Performance: Lowering the RAM usage on your Mac will significantly enhance the overall performance of your system, making it faster and smoother to operate.

2. Better Multitasking: With lower RAM usage, your Mac will be able to handle multiple applications and processes simultaneously without slowing down.

3. Reduced Power Consumption: Running your Mac with lower RAM usage will eventually lead to reduced power consumption, prolonging the battery life of your device.

4. Lesser System Overload: Reducing the amount of RAM usage will prevent system overload and ensure the smooth running of your Mac.

5. Less Heat Production: Running your Mac with lower RAM usage means less heat production, which results in better heat management and cooling of the device.

6. More Space: Lowering RAM usage frees up space on your Mac, allowing you to store more files and data without any difficulty.

7. Reduced Risk of Crashes: Lower RAM usage means fewer instances of crashes and system freezes, ensuring more reliable usage of your device.

8. Cost-Effective: Instead of upgrading your RAM, which can be costly, lowering the RAM usage is a cost-effective way to enhance the performance of your Mac.

9. Better Compatibility: Running on lower RAM usage ensures better compatibility with software and applications, making it easier to launch and run them.

10. Improved User Experience: Ultimately, lower RAM usage results in better user experience, making operating your Mac a smooth and hassle-free process.


1. Limited Multitasking: Lowering RAM usage may limit the number of applications and processes running at the same time, reducing your ability to multi-task.

2. Compromised Functionality: In some cases, lowering RAM usage can compromise the functionality of certain applications or software, leading to the inability to use them.

3. Reduced Performance: While lowering RAM usage can enhance the performance of your Mac, it can also lead to reduced performance of certain applications or software.

4. Inability to Run High-End Software: Lowering RAM usage may result in an inability to run high-end software that requires higher CPU performance and RAM requirements.

5. Increased Load Time: With lower RAM usage, some applications may take longer to load, leading to increased waiting time.

6. Limited upgradability: Lowering RAM usage can limit the upgradability of your system, making it difficult to enhance its performance as your needs increase.

7. Reduced System Stability: Lowering RAM usage may lead to system instability, causing errors and crashes in your system.

8. Increased Compatibility Issues: Lower RAM usage may lead to increased compatibility issues with certain applications or software.

9. Requirement of Technical Knowledge: Reducing RAM usage requires technical knowledge and expertise, making it difficult for non-technical users to implement.

10. Limited Boost in Performance: Lowering RAM usage may only provide limited boost in performance, compared to upgrading your RAM or other system components.


1. What causes high RAM usage on Mac?

High RAM usage on Mac can be caused by running too many applications at once, switching between memory-intensive apps, running large files or documents, and outdated software.

2. Is high RAM usage on Mac harmful?

High RAM usage on Mac is not necessarily harmful, but it can cause your computer to slow down and become less responsive, making it difficult to perform tasks efficiently.

3. Can I lower RAM usage on Mac?

Yes, you can lower RAM usage on Mac by closing unnecessary applications and processes, updating software, disabling startup programs, and increasing virtual memory.

4. How do I check my Mac’s RAM usage?

You can check your Mac’s RAM usage by opening the Activity Monitor found in the Utilities folder. This will display a list of all the running processes and their RAM usage.

5. How much RAM usage is normal on a Mac?

Normal RAM usage on a Mac can vary depending on the number of applications running. Typically, 4-8GB of RAM usage is normal for everyday tasks such as browsing the internet and emailing.

6. Can I upgrade my Mac’s RAM?

Yes, you can upgrade your Mac’s RAM. However, this depends on the Mac’s model and year. Some Mac models have non-upgradable RAM, while others can be upgraded by a professional.

7. What is virtual memory on Mac?

Virtual memory on Mac is a feature that borrows hard drive space as RAM to allow more applications and processes to be run simultaneously.

8. How do I increase virtual memory on Mac?

You can increase virtual memory on Mac by going to the System Preferences, clicking on the ‘Memory’ tab, and selecting ‘Virtual Memory’. From there, you can adjust the settings to increase virtual memory.

9. How often should I clear my Mac’s RAM?

Clearing your Mac’s RAM is not necessary unless you are experiencing performance issues. If you do need to clear it, you can do so by restarting your Mac or using a third-party app.

10. Can I clear my Mac’s RAM manually?

Yes, you can clear your Mac’s RAM manually by using the Terminal app and entering a specific command. However, this is not recommended unless you have experience with the Terminal.

11. Should I disable startup programs to lower RAM usage?

Disabling startup programs can lower RAM usage, but it can also affect the functionality of your Mac. Only disable programs you are sure you do not need at startup.

12. How do I update software to lower RAM usage?

You can update software on your Mac by going to the App Store or the software’s website and checking for available updates. Updating to the newest version can help optimize the software and lower RAM usage.

13. Can third-party apps help lower RAM usage?

Yes, there are third-party apps available that can help optimize your Mac’s performance and lower RAM usage. However, be cautious when downloading and using these apps, as some can cause more harm than good.

How to Lower RAM Usage on Mac

Mac computers are renowned for their high processing speed and performance, but even the best machines can slow down due to high RAM usage. RAM (Random Access Memory) is a vital resource for a computer, enabling it to run multiple applications at once. However, too many applications running concurrently can cause your Mac to run slowly or even crash. In this article, we will discuss some tips to help you lower RAM usage on your Mac and improve your computer’s performance.

1. Identify Apps that Consume High RAM

The first step to lowering RAM usage on your Mac is identifying which apps are taking up too much memory. Fortunately, you can check which apps are consuming the most RAM by opening the Activity Monitor app. To access this app, press ‘Command + Space’ and type ‘Activity Monitor’ in the spotlight search bar. Activity Monitor shows the currently running applications and processes, their energy usage, and RAM consumption. Once you’ve identified the applications consuming a high amount of RAM, you can either quit them or force quit them to free up more memory.

2. Use a Memory Optimization Tool

Using a memory optimization tool is another effective way to lower RAM usage on your Mac. Memory optimization apps reduce memory usage by purging inactive RAM, clear caches, and running other background tasks. Some of the popular memory optimization tools for Mac include CleanMyMac X, Memory Clean, and iBoostup. These tools perform automatic monitoring and optimization of your Mac’s RAM usage, ensuring that it’s always running at optimum performance.

3. Disable Unused Applications and Services

Disabling unused applications and services on your Mac can help to lower RAM usage and boost your computer’s performance. Some applications run in the background and consume a considerable amount of memory even when they are not in use. You can disable these applications by opening the ‘System Preferences’ panel and navigating to the ‘Users and Groups’ section. Click on your profile and select ‘Login Items’, then uncheck the apps you don’t need to run at start-up. Additionally, you can disable unused system services that use up memory by navigating to the ‘System Preferences’ panel and clicking on ‘Sharing’. Uncheck any services you don’t regularly use.


To wrap it up, these are some of the ways in which you can lower RAM usage on your Mac and improve your computer’s performance. It’s worth noting that while it’s essential to keep your RAM usage as low as possible, you should also avoid over-optimizing your Mac as it can have a negative impact on its performance. Try out these tips and enjoy a fast, responsive Mac.


Thanks for taking the time to read this article on how to lower RAM usage on Mac. We hope that you’ve found these tips useful and that they’ll help you optimize your Mac’s performance. Remember, keep your Mac clean, clear caches, and optimize your RAM usage for the best computing experience. Bye for now.