Summary: "Your system has run out of application memory" appeared on your screen for no reason? Did you know that’s one of the most common issues that can happen to your Mac? You might have noticed that the computer is running slower than usual or the problem may have occurred after upgrading your macOS to the latest macOS Monterey. If that sounds familiar — then you’ve come to the right place. Let's find out what the possible reasons are and how to fix the given error.
When your Mac’s system runs out of application memory, it’s can’t deal with a large number of active processes. Let’s take a look at some of the possible causes of the problem.
Nobody is a stranger to running multiple apps at the same time. However, having too many active apps and the ones in the background will take up more and more RAM, eventually resulting in the “Your system has run out of application memory” error. Keep an eye on the apps and quit the ones you don’t need at the moment.
Some extensions can affect the performance of your browser, and it may also lead to your Mac running out of RAM, slowdowns, and the “Your system is out of application memory” message popping up on your screen. Try to minimize the number of browser extensions you use and open fewer tabs simultaneously to save memory and CPU resources.
If you’re running macOS Monterey and getting the “Your system is out of application memory” error, make sure you’ve installed the most recent version that fixes the issue.
Related reading: macOS Monterey Update: Recent Problems And Fixes
MacOS automatically opens the Force Quit dialogue window when the “Your system has run out of application memory” error occurs.
When it happens, just click on Force Quit near the application that uses the most of the Mac memory.
Another way to Force Quit applications is to do it yourself using the Activity Monitor:
1. Open Finder.
2. Open the Utilities folder and choose Activity Monitor.
3. Under the Memory tab, select the application that you want to force quit, and click the Quit button.
The easiest way to free up RAM and fix the problem is to restart your Mac. Restarting allows your system to shut down all system processes and clean up RAM properly.
However, constant restarting may be annoying as it makes you quit all the processes. Besides, it might be time-consuming, especially when you have a video call in a few minutes and your Mac is lagging.
That’s why there is another option for clearing RAM. Use the commands in Terminal:
1. Open Terminal.
2. Type sudo purge command and press Enter.
3. Enter the admin password (the one you are using when turning on the Mac) and press Enter again.
4. Your RAM will be cleared.
Browser extensions are really helpful for easy navigation. However, having too many useless or outdated extensions can lead to the “Your system has run out of application memory” message error on Mac. Deleting the ones you don’t use or need may help the situation.
Let’s find out how to remove extensions from the most used browsers— Safari and Chrome.
Uninstall extensions from Safari:
1. Open Safari >go to Safari Preferences.
2. Open the Extensions tab.
3. Look through the extensions and remove unknown or unneeded ones by clicking Uninstall.
Uninstall extensions from Chrome:
1. In Google Chrome, click on the three dots icon and choose Settings.
2. Open the Extensions menu.
3. Look through the extensions and remove unknown or unneeded ones by clicking Remove.
Uninstalling applications is another way to reduce Mac memory usage. We install Mac apps just to test and then completely forget about them, or we still keep the apps that have only been used once or twice. Often they launch once you turn on your Mac, slowing down the system. Consequently, “Your system is out of application memory” may pop up.
To delete an app from your Mac, follow these steps:
1. Open Finder and go to the Application folder.
2. Find the unnecessary or unknown apps and right-click on them.
3. Choose the Move to Trash option.
4. Empty the Trash if you’d like to delete them permanently.
Finally, it’s always good to keep an eye out for macOS updates. You can usually fix most bugs on Mac with a macOS update. If the upgrade causes the problem, Apple will usually provide a fix as soon as possible.
To update macOS to the latest version:
1. Select System Preferences from the Apple menu in the upper right corner of your screen.
2. Choose Software Update.
3. Click Upgrade Now.
Your RAM defines your Mac’s performance, thus affecting the number of apps you may run simultaneously. If you think your RAM is not enough for your daily routine, you may think of upgrading it.
To check if you have an opportunity to replace the RAM, follow these steps:
1. Click on Apple menu > About This Mac, then choose Memory.
2. To see the instructions on how to upgrade the RAM, click on Memory Upgrade Instructions.
Note: It works with those Mac computers where RAM is removable and not integrated into the motherboard. Go to the official Apple website, and find your Mac model to see if you can replace the RAM.
Mac acting up and showing error messages can happen basically to anyone. The solutions provided above will help you reduce Mac memory usage and prevent the problem “Your system has run out of application memory” from recurring. Keep in mind these simple rules: quit the apps you don’t need, remove unknown and unnecessary extensions and software, and keep macOS up to date.
You can check the application memory on Mac using the Activity Monitor. To do that click the Application folder > Utilities > Activity Monitor > Memory.
There is a memory pressure box in the Memory menu. It displays the information about memory usage. There’s also a graph that shows the memory pressure on your system. If the graph is green, you have enough disk space; if it is yellow or red, you are running out of memory.
RAM stands for Random Access Memory, a.k.a. RAM. It is needed to store the operating system, applications, and data in current use.
It is the amount of free memory required for an app to run.
Ruslana is a tech content writer whose true passion is finding out about everything Mac-related. She specializes in creating macOS guides and tips & tricks. In her spare time, you’ll find her doing yoga or discovering local coffee shops in search of the best filter coffee.
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