I have a MacBook Pro Retina, so it has an SSD but no HDD. I use Dr. Cleaner and I've often noticed that when 99% of the app memory is being used, the OS X El Capitan freezes. At this point of time, nothing works: not my trackpad nor my keyboard. There is no choice but to hold down the power button and hard shut down.

My question is: Considering that I have SSD and not HDD, is it ok to hard shut down frequently? Do I run any risk other than corrupting the currently open files?

EDIT: I have 8GB RAM and generally 99% of the app memory is used when I use safari and have other apps like google chrome (multiple windows) open.

UPDATE: After some researching and scouring, I found out that a force shutdown on a mac does not harm the SSD, but I am still unsure about the OSX. So does a force shutdown harm the OSX in any way? Or is the only risk losing some data (eg. word document)?

  • If "there is no choice" what's the question? And what if someone answered "that's ok" and in a week your Mac would stop to boot?
    – techraf
    Mar 20, 2016 at 4:55
  • @techraf that's why I'm looking for expert help and preferably someone who has had experience with this issue.
    – Airdish
    Mar 20, 2016 at 4:56
  • These is no one that has an experience in your case. All you have shared is "something is wrong".
    – techraf
    Mar 20, 2016 at 4:59
  • @techraf I have not shared "something is wrong". I have shared "is what I am doing wrong, and are there any implications".
    – Airdish
    Mar 20, 2016 at 5:00
  • @TheOddbodNumber It's definitely no good thing to hard shut down frequently. You should rather provide additional information concerning the 99% memory use->freeze to solve the real issue.
    – klanomath
    Mar 20, 2016 at 5:21

2 Answers 2


I would suggest patience. When your computer lags (I'm going to assume you have the spinning beach ball), it's probably doing something behind the scenes - a forced shutdown should only ever be used as a last resort method when your computer has been unresponsive for the past three hours or so.

The best method to get your computer back to normal is to use Force Quit (keyboard combination Option ⌥Command ⌘Esc ⎋) - this might take a while to show up under those memory usage conditions (note: your keyboard is still "responsive", just really, really slow), but it will.

When it does, select the app causing the slowdown (again, this may take some time) and click "Force Quit" (yes, this may take some time as well). The app will quit (eventually) and your system should return to normal.

If the problem persists, though, I would either inform the developer of the app and/or if the problem is not limited to one app, take it in to Apple for advice.

  • The situation arises basically when I use safari so I guess I'll stop using it...
    – Airdish
    Mar 21, 2016 at 11:54

OSX will always try to use the maximum available RAM that way it can perform better, and it is Operating Systems job to deal with it anyway, and in general OSX do a good job in that regard. You don't spend on that much RAM if you are not going to utilize it isn't it.

However, Try Alt+Cmd+Escape that would bring "Force Quit Applications" and you can force quit any App that's not responding or Relaunch Finder. If that works that should be the first thing you do. If it doesn't you should go for the hard restart.

If it happens frequently, take it to an AppleStore. You may have a software/hardware issue.

  • The Alt+Cmd+Esc won't work because the keyboard becomes unresponsive.
    – Airdish
    Mar 20, 2016 at 6:41
  • You are out of options here but to force restart. It shouldn't hurt the hardware since you dont have any moving parts, but the data can corrupt. They usually get recovered when you have a successful restart. Like i said before, if it continues you might have to take to an apple store. You may have some 3rd party app messing with your hardware.
    – Haneez
    Mar 20, 2016 at 6:47

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