I use an old (2007) Mac Mini (10.7.5) to serve iTunes (11.0.2) and recently it has started using a lot of memory. It has never been what you would call efficient in terms of memory allocation, but 1.5+GB seems high even for iTunes. It starts out around 115MB and every so slowly climbs even with nothing using or accessing it.

Anybody else seen this?

And no, purge does not help. :)

The machine has 4GB installed but of course OSX sees 3GB. The iTunes library is about 300GB. There are no other active processing going on and the machine is not used as a desktop. It is not actively importing new content or even playing content at all. Mostly it just sleeps. When launched, iTunes uses a bit over 100MB according to Activity Monitor.

All it does is run iTunes so various iOS devices can wirelessly sync when they want to. I restarted iTunes yesterday and it used 113MB. This evening I came back and it is using a little over 1,000MB and growing ever so slightly.

  • Give us more information, the more the better. For example, the total system memory you have, how big is your database, and is it doing anything background, for example sound check analysis, or searching for album art, or even downloading content from iCloud? I will suggest a troubleshoot, do the following steps. Start iTunes with another database. Create another user account, and create a new database. Create an user account, and use the old database. Reinstall iTunes. These should give us a little bit more grasp over your problem.
    – Shane Hsu
    Mar 20, 2013 at 3:14
  • I recommend that you try starting up without iTunes running. Then start a different program. I originally thought that the memory leak was in 10.7 itself. I saw it go away with 10.8. Most programs you leave open and running will mem leak in 10.7. At least that was my experience.
    – Everett
    Mar 20, 2013 at 4:24
  • When you reboot and start iTunes, how much ram does it use. This might be normal use of virtual memory based on media you consume after the app launches.
    – bmike
    Mar 20, 2013 at 11:40

1 Answer 1


I believe I have figured it out. I relocated my iPhoto library but had never opened it afterwards in iPhoto. I believe that iTunes has a memory leak in handling when it tries to access the library that no longer exists. Once I opened iPhoto and selected the new library location the memory leak in iTunes stopped.

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