Occasionally - even with abundant care - my 16GB MBPro runs out of application memory and the dreaded "No more application memory available" dialog appears.

Fortunately we are still able to access Activity Monitor: and the first thing I do is kill the web browsers that tend to accumulate large amounts of memory over time.

Less fortunate is that - even after verifying that the Memory Used + Swap Memory are less than 10GB combined, it is still not possible to resurrect the Paused applications.

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If it were not possible to resuscitate the paused apps - then what good is this notification? Are we compelled to simply kill the apps ourselves? Given there is now sufficient memory for any of the remaining open apps to continue then why are they still unable to do so?

1 Answer 1


Not in front of my mac right now, but basic steps would be:

  1. Open the Terminal application: just type Terminal into Spotlight
  2. List the running processes : ps -ax
  3. Find the process you want to unpause. You need its PID *Process Id
  4. To unpause, strangely enough you use the "Kill" command on the process with the CONT flag: kill -CONT [app_pid] dont forget the -CONT as otherwise you will kill it instead of unpausing. In your example that'd bekill -Cont 69971

You can get the pid from the Activity Monitor if you have that column showing

  • 7
    you totally missed the CONT flag in the kill command didnt you ...
    – Rostol
    Commented Jun 18, 2017 at 20:32
  • 1
    Yes I did: apologies. A suggestion would be to put that in bold at the top of the post: I will not be the only one to miss that detail. Commented Jun 18, 2017 at 20:33
  • trying it out now. Seems to have worked. That's neat. Commented Jun 18, 2017 at 20:37
  • 3
    Important note: The kill command doesn't kill, its purpose is to send a signal to a process The thing is that the default signal if none is specified does kill the process. Commented Jun 18, 2017 at 23:55

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