When I bought my MacBook, 2GB seemed like a lot of RAM, compared to the 512MB I'd been running on my then-8-year-old computer. I should have remembered that RAM is the new disk and gotten the full 4GB (the size of the hard drive in the computer I bought ten years before). My main memory problems are my web browser and iTunes. I tend to leave a lot of tabs open as a to-do list (hey, this blog looks interesting, maybe I'll read it tomorrow... or next year), so keeping all the DOMs around is expensive. Firefox, despite having a larger initial footprint, seems to handle dozens of tabs more gracefully than Chrome's process-per-website model. iTunes is nice and snappy for the person who owns a couple dozen CDs and buys the hit albums from the iTunes store. However, to provide quick queries, it keeps all the song metadata in memory, making it astonishingly sluggish with my 1TB+ music library. In addition, every time iTunes plays a song, it updates the play count and last played date and then writes the entire music library file
to disk. In my case, that's a 311MB, 30 second "ugh."
So anyway, I ordered 4GB of RAM that arrived today. I was excited and started taking the case off my computer, and was then thwarted by Steve Jobs's personal vendetta against easily-removable screws. The sleek MacBook case has a few Phillips screws smaller than any screwdriver in the house, so now I have to wait until tomorrow for sexy performance from increased memory. (Naturally, the How to install MacBook memory page
doesn't say what size screwdriver you need so you'll know what to buy at the store.) I shouldn't be surprised, though. I had to borrow a putty knife to replace the hard drive in a MacMini. I bought a torx
screwdriver to work on my G4 Cube (and then I bought another one because the first was the wrong size). And it goes all the way back to the original Mac and it's deeply recessed torx screws
(Update, long after: I believe the magic implement was a Philips #00