Apple’s macOS Monterey memory leak blamed on custom cursors • The Register

Apple’s MacOS Monterey, the latest version of iGiant’s desktop operating system, turns out to have an insatiable appetite for memory if you use certain apps.

Shortly after the OS update was released on October 25, Apple customers – at least those who avoided installation issues – began to notice that some apps were gobbling up an excessive amount of memory, at least. so much so that the programs crashed or stopped.

There have been reports of this kind for Adobe Creative Cloud apps, Microsoft Office, 4D cinema, and Pages, to name a few.

Mozilla’s Firefox has also been affected – 79 GB of memory that’s a lot, even for a browser known for memory consumption. Following October 10 Bug report, filed just before macOS Monterey was released, Mozillans determined that Apple’s latest operating system was affected by a memory leak that occurs when an app uses a custom cursor.

“On macOS 12 Monterey, using a non-standard cursor size or colors causes a large memory leak in Firefox,” the bug report explains. “Firefox version 94 includes a fix that reduces the memory leak, but the problem can still occur. The problem has been reported to Apple and a fix is ​​expected in a future update to macOS 12. ”

A memory leak occurs when application code allocates memory and then fails to free that memory for reuse after it is no longer needed, causing the application to hoard available memory . When memory continues to be claimed in this manner and is not released, the memory reserve is eventually exhausted and applications are deleted.

In a blog post Monday, software developer and founder of Electric Light Company, Howard Oakley offers That the leak is from a group of settings in the Accessibility Preferences pane, which provides interface modification controls.

“The leak appears to occur when the type of pointer changes, for example from a standard arrow to an I-beam for inserting text,” Oakley wrote. “What is most likely is that when the pointer has been customized using the settings in this pane, the memory used by the previous pointer is not freed as a result of a pointer type change. “

Via Twitter, developer Steve Troughton-Smith speculated that the issue could be caused by Apple replacing the old Objective-C code – where memory is managed manually – with Swift code, which manages memory management automatically.

There are almost certainly others other memory leaks in macOS Montereybecause they are older versions of the operating system and in applications. The software is full of bugs. But the large number of affected apps means Apple should roll out a fix as soon as possible.

The register asked Apple for an explanation, and the retail giant did not respond. ®

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