Version 2.5.1 of App Tamer is available now. Among other things, it includes fixes for a couple of complaints with the “using too much CPU” notifications that App Tamer puts up when a process is – you guessed it – using too much CPU. It will no longer notify you if you’ve already throttled an app, even if the app is still over the warning threshold. It also provides a method of making the “Let it continue” button suppress the high-CPU notifications for longer. The default is now 10 minutes (instead of 5) before you see another warning, and you can change that by using this command in Terminal:
where XXX is is the number of seconds to silence notifications.
And for those folks that want to automate control of their apps, a new “manage” verb in App Tamer’s AppleScript dictionary lets you create scripts so you can change settings on a schedule, change an app’s settings with a keyboard shortcut, or something AppleScript-y like that. Here’s an example:
That will slow Safari to 2% CPU usage when it’s in the background and will hide it after it’s been idle for 10 minutes. To see all of the options, open App Tamer’s dictionary in Script Editor.
This scripting ability is being used by some users to change settings for backups so they run with different CPU limits at night vs. during the day, and throttling background apps more aggressively during video calls. As they say, the possibilities are endless!
App Tamer 2.5.1 also includes a number of fixes for infrequently encountered bugs, such as incorrect behavior when the stats update frequency is set to “never”, and processes not appearing when they’re run from the Terminal using ‘sudo’ or ‘su’.
Version 2.5 of App Tamer is available, addressing a number of issues with different web browsers.
It adds default settings for Microsoft Edge, throttling Edge to 2% CPU when it’s not in the foreground.
It also fixes issues with Chrome apps that run as separate processes (created by saving a Chrome Shortcut with the “Open as window” checkbox turned on), making sure that Chrome is left running at full-speed when a shortcut app needs to run unhindered.
Performance problems have been resolved when site-specific browsers created with Epichrome are running. Previously, their reliance on frequent, repeated calls to shell commands was causing App Tamer itself to use too much CPU.
And finally, site-specific browsers created with Coherence Pro can each have their own settings in App Tamer, rather than all being managed with the settings you’ve given to Chrome.
Full release notes and download links are available on the App Tamer release page, or by choosing “Check for Updates” in App Tamer if you’re already running it.
While App Tamer‘s high-CPU-usage alerts are very helpful, they could occasionally be annoying because they’d interrupt keyboard input when they popped up.
They’ve now been rewritten so that you can continue typing until you’re done doing what you’re doing, then deal with the alert.
Version 2.4.9 also adds an option to automatically download and install updates as they become available, and the settings for App Tamer’s appearance preferences are now more clear about how things work.
These are fairly minor changes (because the core functionality already works really well ?) but they take care of a few unnecessary pain points.
If you’re interested in App Tamer, Podfeet Podcasts just posted a great write-up about it. The article goes into more depth than our own App Tamer pages, and is a great introduction to its features and why you’d want them. It’s a few minutes’ read, and I highly recommend it if you’re interested in getting the CPU usage of your Mac under control!
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Version 2.4.8 of App Tamer is available. It now explicitly supports the new Music app in Catalina, meaning that if Music is playing something, App Tamer won’t slow or stop it even if it’s in the background.
This release also adds support for Google Chrome ‘Apps’, which you can create in Google Chrome by using the More Tools > Create Shortcut item in the “…” menu in a Chrome window. If you select “Open as window” when creating the shortcut, Chrome creates a separate application that relies on Chrome to render its window. That means that App Tamer needs to (and now will) keep Chrome running, rather than slowing or stopping it, when you’re using one of these separate Chrome apps.
And finally, version 2.4.8 of App Tamer also corrects several issues with its process control mechanism that could result in it not working correctly after your Mac wakes from sleep.
Version 2.4.7 of App Tamer is out. The new release fixes a bug in its “Hide after X minutes” and “Quit after X minutes” features that could cause it to use unreasonable amounts of processor time when they were turned on for iTunes or Spotify. Not exactly what you want to happen in an app that’s designed to reduce the CPU usage on your Mac 🙂
Version 2.4.6 of App Tamer is available, adding preliminary support for macOS 10.16 Catalina (up to the second developer release, anyway, because that’s what we’ve got at present).
It also fixes a little bug that I personally found really annoying: When Spotlight was indexing files, App Tamer showed all of the Spotlight processes separately, often filling up half of the visible process list with Spotlight stuff. It now does what it’s supposed to do, aggregating all the CPU usage in one “Spotlight Indexer” entry and controlling that as if it’s a single process. That gives you better control over Spotlight’s CPU usage and makes CPU-hogs easier to see (I’m looking at you, Spotlight!).
This release also introduces a new setting in App Tamer’s preferences. In the Control tab, there’s now a way to modify how long it waits before managing processes after it launches or wakes from sleep.
This lets you give all processes a little time to run at full speed to get everything synced up after your Mac wakes up, usually making that happen a little faster.
Version 2.4.5 of App Tamer is a fairly tame release – it corrects a few nagging bugs, and is now checked for malware by Apple and notarized to indicate so. The menu bar icon shows its disabled state more clearly when running in Dark Mode on Mojave, and some processes were mistakenly listed in the “Managed Processes” list even though App Tamer wasn’t managing them (ironically, because of bookkeeping error, they were included in the list because App Tamer never touched them at all).
Some users of App Tamer have noticed that version 2.4.3 unexpectedly disappeared from their menu bar. There was a library shared across all of St. Clair Software’s apps that didn’t work correctly in App Tamer, causing it to crash when it received certain system notifications. That’s now been fixed.
Equally important, App Tamer was using more CPU than it had to, which isn’t really what you want in an app that’s supposed to be saving CPU cycles. It primarily affected Google Chrome users, but was actually a problem with all web browsers. App Tamer periodically “rebalances” the CPU usage of browsers’ helper processes, and was actually re-checking to see if the browser was downloading anything every time it did that rebalancing. That was completely unnecessary, and the download check is one of the more CPU-intensive things that App Tamer does, so it really shouldn’t have been doing that more than it absolutely had to.
So, those two issues are fixed – my apologies for the problems. You can grab version 2.4.4 from the App Tamer Release Page.