I just purchased a new MacBook Pro with Mavericks installed and noticed that Activity Monitor doesn't have the "Show Memory Usage" dock icon option anymore. I really liked this option since I used it to prevent disk swapping by closing applications when I had too many open. What gives?

activity monitor

  • It's likely that utility developers will soon produce small utils that will display memory pressure in the Dock. These utils will (hopefully) also use less resources than keeping Activity Monitor open. – user61478 Nov 3 '13 at 23:18
  • Good question. Now, when the Mac goes slow, I don't even know why :( – AlikElzin-kilaka Feb 2 '14 at 11:26

It seems that this feature – since Apple has changed the way how they display memory usage – isn't a option anymore:

This is no longer an option, especially since Mavericks has new memory management routines (ie, memory compression) that make the charting of memory usage less straightforward. Apple has switched to a new "Memory Pressure" approach to viewing memory usage, which is available in the Memory section of Activity Monitor, but so far has not been added as a Dock icon option. Hopefully Apple will do so, as this would perhaps be one of the more useful Dock icon options.

I've got that from here one would hope that at some point we could graph memory pressure in the dock using Apple's Activity monitor as opposed to needing to open the whole tool with a window that shows many other items.


You actually don't need to that anymore, because XNU now does that automatically - by utilizing memory pressure notifications, it triggers a special kernel thread called MemoryStatus which finds processes that can be exited cleanly - and automatically closes them (well, kills them) for you. This alleviates the need for you to keep a close watch on RAM utilization, and likely accounts for the design decision to remove that option.

  • 2
    Perhaps you don't need to, but some of us geeks like to. – Wildcard Sep 26 '16 at 9:06
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    @Wildcard no no, Apple knows what's best for you. Always. – alexw Sep 18 '17 at 16:43

Another option is iStat Menus which gives a lot of really useful information displayed in a very user friendly way and is not expensive.


They have recently updated it for Mavericks.

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