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Wired Memory vs. Active Memory in OS X

On the iMac I use, on the activity monitor, there are 4 different usages of the RAM:

  1. Free - Fairly self explanatory.
  2. Wired - What is this?
  3. Active - clearly just RAM currently being used
  4. Inactive - I figure this is just RAM reserved by the system.

So what is this Wired RAM? What is it's purpose, and why is it hogging so much?


1 Answer 1


As answered here:

  • Wired: Used by an application that claims that the chunk of allocated memory must stay physically in RAM, and not swappable onto disk no matter it is recently used or not. i.e. another application may NOT request that particular trunk of memory. Examples are part of the memory utilized by the system, and that used by virtual machines.

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