Tag Archives: Sierra

Live on the edge and fix sluggish Safari browser memory leak issues – maybe

Mac Mini Sierra 10.2.1 Safari 10.0.1 by Russ Imrie March 28, 2017

Disclaimer: I have used this fix myself but mileage may vary. If you are comfortable digging in your /Library folder, go for it

Recently my Safari browser started bogging down and repeatedly brought my Mac to a standstill. The spinning beach ball was everywhere. Apple Care appointment made sure my hardware was ok but the solution was NOT–to delete some Safari extensions, as the expert suggested. That seemed to work for a while, but the system sank into a bog soon after.

I reverted to launching the Mac with Command-R (recovery mode) which let me reinstall Sierra from Time Machine. Soon failing again, I tried reinstalling Sierra from a boot install USB drive I had made. But problem persisted. I tried Starting with Shift in safe mode, which at least let me launch Safari, get into its preferences, and remove my extensions (restorable at a later time). Obviously the issue was something in the restored applications and preferences from Time Machine. It was really screwed up. I was facing totally erasing, formatting my hard drive then restoring from maybe a month’s old Time Machine backup. Ugly.

On the Apple Forums, I eventually found a community of users faced with the same issue and a post from ShirsenduK on the Apple forums at https://discussions.apple.com/thread/7787044?start=15&tstart=0 who posted his/her solution after meeting frustration with Apple. I’ll paste in the process and you can try it, all responsibility yours. All I can say is that Safari launched brand new after this, requiring signing in again with my Apple/iCloud password (then the 2fA message for confirmation on my phone). iCloud has seemed to restore my bookmarks and favorites bar setup. Cool. So here’s the text of ShirsenduK’s steps. You better be familiar with activity Monitor, an app you’ll find in /Applications/Utilities.

ShirsenduK Dec 25, 2016 6:08 AM in response to Stephen Donovan  Level 1 Level 1 (9 points)   expertise.safariSafari

Dec 25, 2016 6:08 AM in response to Stephen Donovan

After being stonewalled by AppleSupport, I decided to fix it myself. The problem seemed to be limited to my primary user account. So I decided to reset Safari manually as the UI would only make Safari hang. Here is what I did.

Quit Safari/Kill via Activity Monitor

Open the Go menu in the OS X Finder

Hold the Option key and choose the Library option that appears

Move Safari folder to Trash

Open the Library > Saved Application State folder

Locate the “com.apple.Safari.savedState” folder

Move this folder to the trash

Open the Library > Caches folder

Locate all folders that begin with “com.apple.Safari”

Move these folders to the trash.

Open the Library > Cookies folder

Remove the file called “com.apple.Safari.SafeBrowsing.binarycookies”

Open the Library > Preferences folder

Remove any file that begins with “com.apple.Safari”

Go to the Library > Internet Plug-Ins folder

Move all items from this folder to the trash

NOTE: all previous steps are in your user’s directory/folder, The following step is in your main Macintosh HD directory/folder – ed.

Go to the Macintosh HD > Library > Internet plug-ins folder

Move all items out of this folder except the Quartz Composer.webplugin plug-in.

Start Safari, it should be good as new.

P.S. You will loose history and cookies.

Thanks to ShirsenduK – another happy camper

distant US Capitol dome

U.S. Capitol SOTU eve, 2011 – photo Russ Imrie

Russell Imrie is a  Networking and Content Specialist, craft beer enthusiast, webmaster and an American Indian blogger living in the Washington DC area. For a decade Imrie built systems and lived totally off the grid in the Santa Cruz Mountains of California near Silicon Valley. More opinion pieces are at China Daily Mail (under nom de blog supTweet)

Copyright Russell Imrie 2017