Need I Be Concerned w/ How Many Apps are Running on My Mac?

"This might seem like a trivial question, but I’m quite meticulous about conserving RAM and maximizing battery life on my Mac (MBP M1 Max with 32 GB). Consequently, I usually run a minimal number of background apps.

Currently, I’m conducting an experiment where I use both Reminders and OF 4 simultaneously. The goal is to assess whether the efficiency gains from using OF 4 justify making it my primary task manager instead of Reminders. Additionally, I’m compiling and summarizing a substantial amount of research and journal articles, so having DEVONthink set to open at login would be beneficial.

I’ve attached two screenshots for reference. The first displays the apps I typically preload and run, while the second shows my current setup with additional apps.

My question is, will adding DT and OF to my preloaded apps significantly impact the performance or battery life of my Mac?

PS That is my morning coffee over the holidays. :joy:

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DT’s idle energy use is a little higher and it has the potential to do more in the background depending on your settings (smart rules, multiple sync types, potential to sync/ingest more data.) I wouldn’t worry about OF at all. Neither will impede the speed of other apps.

Check their 12 hour power impact in Activity Monitor > Energy after you’ve had them in the background for a day to see if either is unusually high.


Dude, a busy top-level executive like you shouldn’t fuss about little things like this.

You’ve got massive memory. And you have macOS, which is very good at managing lots of memory contention. No, you will not have a problem adding DEVONthink and OmniFocus to the list. Be aware, that DEVONthink sucks resources depending on how many databases you have open at a time, but even then, that app is also well-designed and knows how to keep its demands low when it is running in the background.



You’re fine. Run whatever you like.


Yes. Although the concern should be that you are in the thrall of FOMO with respect to task managers!

The sirens got to you!


You will expend more energy worrying about this than the apps will use!



More characters ….


The sirens got to you!

Not yet, I’m experimenting so no change yet. One of the main factors for my considering this is that OF is a free upgrade for me and will not require a subscription. They may get me, but I’m not got yet. :joy:

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But following the lead of @tomalmy, is the energy expenditure worth it?

What is lost chasing perfection when you’ve already found good enough?

Happy experimenting!


is the energy expenditure worth it?

Honestly, I’m not sure. I guess I’ll find out soon. But, a major release of OF deserves at least a spin. :slightly_smiling_face:

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It is fun though. :slight_smile:

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You know, I would probably do myself a big favor if I stopped posting all of my experimentations. It probably makes people wonder about me! :joy:


No! No! No!

We all live vicariously through you!


I’ve never been concerned about RAM usage or processor utilization, etc. If I have too many apps open I’ll notice a problem and fix it. When I’m on my Mac I’m not controlling a nuclear reactor or flying an airplane full of people. I don’t need to be monitoring everything every minute. I had windows servers that ran for years without me needing to do anything to keep them running, other than check the logs and apply the occasional update.

A replacement battery is $249, or from the looks of it, about the same as three weeks worth of morning coffees. Don’t worry about it. :grinning:


Now that is a truly scary thought! I would never have imagined that my calling in life was to create vicarious angst! :joy:


Expensive coffee! :slightly_smiling_face:


I love reading about your experiments and quests to find better apps & workflows! (really) Your contributions are one of my favourite things on this forum.

Your announcement - a while back - that you intended to ignore the siren calls — was a major disappointment (to me!)

I’m thrilled you’re back chasing the Shiny New Thing.


The whole point of memory is to be used, so unless you’re regularly exceeding the amount of memory you have, you shouldn’t worry.

These days, even exceeding memory use and running into SSD swap files is pretty much a non issue. Back in the early 2000s, the explanation was that if you equated accessing information from memory as taking 1 second (not real time, but for comparison) then the equivalent would be that getting info from swap was about 3 months. The difference was that high, between the drive spinning up and the read head moving.

I don’t know what the comparison would be these days, but it wouldn’t surprise me if 1 Second ~ 1 Minute was an over exageration.

I’ve seen so called server “experts” worry about memory being above 75% You bought it, use it, there is no penalty.


Yes, but only during startup: you will notice a little slowdown while macOS launches DT and OF and they do their sync stuff. Apart from that the impact is negligible given the specs you have.

I have some curiosity on your habit of preloading apps, I never shut down my computer and I open and close apps during the day with Raycast so I don’t have the need to preload any apps.

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I can relate. It’s not different from maintaining a clean and organized desk. While the system can effortlessly manage all the apps, much like my desk can handle a stack of books and scattered papers, this doesn’t seem civilized.

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