Recommendation: Use the Free Memory Tool Daily

Of all the hardware resources that the macOS manages, computer memory (RAM) is probably the most volatile. Whenever you launch or quit an app, open or close a document, or insert or eject a USB thumb drive, memory is allocated or freed. While the macOS does an excellent job of handling all these tasks, over time the RAM in your Mac can become fragmented, and the amount of free memory available for future tasks can be limited. 

There are two different ways you can fix the RAM in your Mac being fragmented: 

  1. Reboot your Mac 
  1. Use the Free Memory tool in Parallels® Toolbox for Mac 

While rebooting will address this concern, it can be a hassle to do so: apps need to be quit, VMs need to be shut down or suspended, etc. For me personally, rebooting my iMac doesn’t happen very often. 

The Free Memory tool, however, has none of these drawbacks. It is very easy to use – just a single button click. You can also use the Free Memory tool several times in succession. Figure 1 shows the results of using the Free Memory tool on two different days on my iMac. In the top portion of Figure 1, the free memory was 18.64 GB when the Free Memory tool was first launched. The first use of the tool resulted in 31.11 GB of free memory, and after the second use the free memory was 35.70 GB – a total increase of 17.06 GB, thus almost doubling the amount of free memory. In the bottom portion of Figure 1, the free memory increased from 24.54 GB to 35.65 GB with two successive uses of the Free Memory tool. 

Figure 1_Using the Free Memory tool successively

Figure 1 shows the power of the Free Memory tool when used on a Mac with lots of RAM (64 GB). Presumably, you added this much memory to your Mac because you often use memory-intensive apps like Xcode and Photoshop, and the Free Memory tool ensures that you can use that memory when you need it. 

But what about Macs that have much smaller amounts of memory? Figure 2 shows the use of the Free Memory tool on a MacBook Pro with the Apple M1 chip.

Figure 2_Using the Free Memory tool on a Mac with only a small amount of RAM installed

This Mac has only 8 GB of RAM. The Free Memory tool increased the amount of free memory from 2.52 GB to 4.18 GB, an increase of 1.52 GB. On an 8 GB Mac, recovering 1.52 GB is truly significant. This shows the importance of the Free Memory tool on a Mac with a limited amount of RAM installed. 

Remember that Parallels Toolbox is included, at no charge, with any Parallels® Desktop for Mac subscription. If you don’t need to run any Windows apps on your Mac, you can purchase a subscription to Parallels Toolbox for Mac, for a full set of 45 tools, of which Free Memory is only one.  

Using the Free Memory tool is so easy and the benefits are so significant, that I recommend using it every day. 

Download a free trial of Parallels Toolbox and test it yourself.

Let us know in the comments about your use of the Free Memory tool.