Ask Different is a question and answer site for power users of Apple hardware and software. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I have a 2010 Macbook Air 11 inch, and it noticeably lags when I use tools like Gnu Screen, Tmux, and Vim, especially with vertical splits and during Screen/Tmux window switching.

Does anyone notice this performance issue?

share|improve this question
I used to run vim on a 266 MHz G3. The MBA 11 is loads faster. – hotpaw2 Mar 7 '11 at 2:48
I'm talking about delays of up to a 1 second to switch windows in Gnu Screen and redraw. It's a pretty serious delay, by any standard, I think. – dan Mar 7 '11 at 2:58
That sounds unlikely to be normal performance for a core 2 duo based modern computer, unless you are using all the memory and it's feeling squeezed? Does it happen like this even if you reboot and just open Terminals/screen and nothing much else? What if you reboot and hold shift to get to safe mode, so no extra software is running, then try it? [Edit: or do you mean screen itself is fast but it causes other GUI programs to lag?] – TessellatingHeckler Mar 8 '11 at 11:16
Air is not as powerful a processor, but screen/tmux/vim is THE low memory stack! Metrics? – chiggsy May 16 '11 at 17:24

The basic question is compared with what?

Yes it will be slower than a new MacBook , iMac etc but we programmed with those tools 10 years ago on slower machines.

All you can say is it slow for you and if so you need to get a faster machine:)

Which is why I have always programmed on a desktop machine as they are faster than laptops of a similar vintage

share|improve this answer

I find my Xcode iOS builds to be faster on my MBA 11 than on the Mac Pro at work.

share|improve this answer
This might be because building needs to run through a lot of small files, and the SSD in the Air makes that significantly faster than the disk in the Mac Pro. Should be able to use that to convince your boss to buy you an SSD at work ;) – TessellatingHeckler Mar 8 '11 at 11:18
Isn't clear how this is relevant to the question. – Andrew Ferrier Aug 24 '12 at 17:03

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.