VirtualBox runs slow on MacBook Pro 2018 (screen refreshes slow)

Discussions related to using VirtualBox on Mac OS X hosts.

Re: VirtualBox runs slow on MacBook Pro 2018 (screen refreshes slow)

Postby W1W » 28. Jun 2019, 20:41

I am thinking of switching to using Parallels Desktop, since I can't always connect my Macbook Pro to an external monitor.
Last edited by W1W on 29. Jun 2019, 20:43, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: VirtualBox runs slow on MacBook Pro 2018 (screen refreshes slow)

Postby socratis » 28. Jun 2019, 21:33

@AndrewVM
I see nothing out of the ordinary in the information that you provided.

I merged your thread with a similar thread, hoping that we can find something common that "plagues" the multiple monitor setup. Please you (and everyone else involved) try to find what's common in there. I still think it's the latest OSX, because I can't reproduce it on OSX 10.11.6...
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Re: VirtualBox runs slow on MacBook Pro 2018 (screen refreshes slow)

Postby W1W » 29. Jun 2019, 00:54

When I hooked up my 2018 MacBook Pro to an external 2560 x 1440 monitor, which also contains a lot of pixels, I don't think I experienced any slow down in VirtualBox. Thanks.
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Re: VirtualBox runs slow on MacBook Pro 2018 (screen refreshes slow)

Postby W1W » 30. Jun 2019, 00:53

I had to give up on VirtualBox until they can produce a fix, because I have deadlines coming up for work. My productivity had taken a hit because it was not always possible to attach my MacBook Pro to an external monitor (e.g., when I am at a coffee shop or on a train). So far there is no lag issue using Parallels Desktop 14, which was able to import the .vbox virtual-machine file from VirtualBox.
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Re: VirtualBox runs slow on MacBook Pro 2018 (screen refreshes slow)

Postby envelope » 1. Jul 2019, 12:41

I fixed my performance issues with 3rd party apps for scaling down the retina screen. Or actually disabling HiDPI. It runs perfectly with high res, but no HiDPI.

viewtopic.php?f=8&t=93113&start=15
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Re: VirtualBox runs slow on MacBook Pro 2018 (screen refreshes slow)

Postby W1W » 1. Jul 2019, 16:33

@envelope What actually happened when you used QuickRes to change the resolution of the built-in high-DPI retina display? If you move away from the high DPI, does it make it hard to read the small texts inside VirtualBox? Thanks.
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Re: VirtualBox runs slow on MacBook Pro 2018 (screen refreshes slow)

Postby envelope » 4. Jul 2019, 14:57

Nothing significant happens. I can see a small change in the sharpness on my retina internal screen, but I could easily go with no HiDPI at regular basis. The great thing with QuickRes is that you can switch HiDPI on and of with 1 click and it switches seamlessly. I bet you won't see any difference in your VM.
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Re: VirtualBox runs slow on MacBook Pro 2018 (screen refreshes slow)

Postby a2357 » 5. Jul 2019, 21:43

VirtualBox on my MacBook Pro 2018. I have 32Gb RAM & i9 CPU. But to say slow is just to say nothing.
It really looks like CPU works just 5% of the time. My log(see below) shows that the CPU was halted for the time approximately 14 times more than executing. Could it be the reason?
00:10:12.852756 /TM/CPU/05/cNsExecuting        33234450654 ns
00:10:12.852761 /TM/CPU/05/cNsHalted 454179815448 ns

This MacBook Pro is my working machine. When I received It I had not experienced similar performance Issues at the begging: It was working nearly fine. I had issues only when I started Selenium test execution. The problem was that it was 3 minutes was working perfectly fine in VritualBox.

8 Chrome browsers in parallel were running tests very fast after 3 minutes the CPU got hot, fans working heavily and I believe the OS would just doesn’t give the CPU to VirtualBox as it can get rid of excessive heat and it gets very slow exactly slow as now.

Then I had an MacOS upgrade and VirtualBox is always slow. My old Asus laptop(with Windows 8 or Ubuntu) with just 4 physical cores works much faster in long run as it never stops. Yeah the fans working fast if I load it, but it is able to get rid of heat. Yeah it is wider, but Asus works it does the job. MacBook Pro looks like is able to handle simple text editor and internet browsing and that’s it.

I believe this is just MacOS doesn’t give CPU cycles to VirtualBox to solve this thin Mac design and the fact that device is not good with excessive heat. I’m so lucky that this MacBook Pro 2018 was provided by a Company and that I have not bought this piece of crap. I wonder who buys this MacBook Pro which is piece of crap for $5000AUD(4099 base price for 16Gb of Ram and I have 32Gb). My old Asus laptop which I bought in 2014 for 1150AUD with 4 cores works in long run much faster than this MacBook Pro I can’t even name it MacBook Pro, it should be named MacBook SlowPro
Code: Select all   Expand viewCollapse view
00:10:12.852496 /TM/CPU/00/cNsExecuting 37261874280 ns
00:10:12.852501 /TM/CPU/00/cNsHalted 506841859092 ns
00:10:12.852505 /TM/CPU/00/cNsOther 21794221340 ns
00:10:12.852510 /TM/CPU/00/cNsTotal 565897954712 ns
00:10:12.852515 /TM/CPU/00/cPeriodsExecuting 5143279 count
00:10:12.852520 /TM/CPU/00/cPeriodsHalted 210479 count
00:10:12.852524 /TM/CPU/00/pctExecuting 33 %
00:10:12.852529 /TM/CPU/00/pctHalted 48 %
00:10:12.852533 /TM/CPU/00/pctOther 17 %
00:10:12.852537 /TM/CPU/01/cNsExecuting 32569981049 ns
00:10:12.852542 /TM/CPU/01/cNsHalted 514239819508 ns
00:10:12.852546 /TM/CPU/01/cNsOther 19270047466 ns
00:10:12.852565 /TM/CPU/01/cNsTotal 566079848023 ns
00:10:12.852568 /TM/CPU/01/cPeriodsExecuting 1251049 count
00:10:12.852571 /TM/CPU/01/cPeriodsHalted 210461 count
00:10:12.852594 /TM/CPU/01/pctExecuting 21 %
00:10:12.852597 /TM/CPU/01/pctHalted 51 %
00:10:12.852600 /TM/CPU/01/pctOther 27 %
00:10:12.852602 /TM/CPU/02/cNsExecuting 35653460284 ns
00:10:12.852605 /TM/CPU/02/cNsHalted 510655232061 ns
00:10:12.852608 /TM/CPU/02/cNsOther 19771147666 ns
00:10:12.852611 /TM/CPU/02/cNsTotal 566079840011 ns
00:10:12.852614 /TM/CPU/02/cPeriodsExecuting 1345027 count
00:10:12.852617 /TM/CPU/02/cPeriodsHalted 217713 count
00:10:12.852633 /TM/CPU/02/pctExecuting 39 %
00:10:12.852636 /TM/CPU/02/pctHalted 42 %
00:10:12.852639 /TM/CPU/02/pctOther 18 %
00:10:12.852663 /TM/CPU/03/cNsExecuting 37323423695 ns
00:10:12.852666 /TM/CPU/03/cNsHalted 507978212961 ns
00:10:12.852671 /TM/CPU/03/cNsOther 20778205744 ns
00:10:12.852674 /TM/CPU/03/cNsTotal 566079842400 ns
00:10:12.852678 /TM/CPU/03/cPeriodsExecuting 1345486 count
00:10:12.852705 /TM/CPU/03/cPeriodsHalted 237853 count
00:10:12.852711 /TM/CPU/03/pctExecuting 41 %
00:10:12.852715 /TM/CPU/03/pctHalted 38 %
00:10:12.852718 /TM/CPU/03/pctOther 20 %
00:10:12.852721 /TM/CPU/04/cNsExecuting 38024575736 ns
00:10:12.852724 /TM/CPU/04/cNsHalted 508698543658 ns
00:10:12.852727 /TM/CPU/04/cNsOther 19356719886 ns
00:10:12.852730 /TM/CPU/04/cNsTotal 566079839280 ns
00:10:12.852735 /TM/CPU/04/cPeriodsExecuting 1161196 count
00:10:12.852739 /TM/CPU/04/cPeriodsHalted 204883 count
00:10:12.852743 /TM/CPU/04/pctExecuting 36 %
00:10:12.852747 /TM/CPU/04/pctHalted 43 %
00:10:12.852752 /TM/CPU/04/pctOther 19 %
00:10:12.852756 /TM/CPU/05/cNsExecuting 33234450654 ns
00:10:12.852761 /TM/CPU/05/cNsHalted 454179815448 ns
00:10:12.852783 /TM/CPU/05/cNsOther 78665572157 ns
00:10:12.852813 /TM/CPU/05/cNsTotal 566079838259 ns
00:10:12.852819 /TM/CPU/05/cPeriodsExecuting 1204255 count
00:10:12.852822 /TM/CPU/05/cPeriodsHalted 163381 count
00:10:12.852825 /TM/CPU/05/pctExecuting 28 %
00:10:12.852828 /TM/CPU/05/pctHalted 32 %
00:10:12.852831 /TM/CPU/05/pctOther 38 %
00:10:12.852834 /TM/CPU/pctExecuting 33 %
00:10:12.852850 /TM/CPU/pctHalted 42 %
00:10:12.852853 /TM/CPU/pctOther 23 %
00:10:12.852856 /TM/MaxHzHint 0 Hz
00:10:12.852858 /TM/R0/1nsSteps 93737 times
00:10:12.852884 /TM/R3/1nsSteps 105956 times
00:10:12.852887 /TM/TSC/offCPU0 18446744073708011200 ticks
00:10:12.852890 /TM/TSC/offCPU1 18446744073708011200 ticks
00:10:12.852893 /TM/TSC/offCPU2 18446744073708011200 ticks
00:10:12.852897 /TM/TSC/offCPU3 18446744073708011200 ticks
00:10:12.852902 /TM/TSC/offCPU4 18446744073708011200 ticks
00:10:12.852923 /TM/TSC/offCPU5 18446744073708011200 ticks
00:10:12.852928 /TM/VirtualSync/CurrentOffset 160610 ns
00:10:12.852954 /VUSB/0/cUrbsInPool 0 count
Last edited by socratis on 5. Jul 2019, 22:09, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Enclosed the information in [quote][code] tags for better readability
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Re: VirtualBox runs slow on MacBook Pro 2018 (screen refreshes slow)

Postby socratis » 6. Jul 2019, 00:37

I've been trying (hard) to find a discussion that I had with an OSX user, where they discovered that the whole slowdown was being caused by the AppNap policy in 10.14.x. But, they would only observe that behavior when the VM was hidden or not in the foreground. Can you check the AppNap status in Activity Monitor relating to the VirtualBoxVM process?
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Re: VirtualBox runs slow on MacBook Pro 2018 (screen refreshes slow)

Postby PikeSandwich » 6. Jul 2019, 15:12

socratis wrote:I've been trying (hard) to find a discussion that I had with an OSX user, where they discovered that the whole slowdown was being caused by the AppNap policy in 10.14.x.

This one? viewtopic.php?f=8&t=93183
  • AppNap only seems to kick in when VM is launched with a graphics head _AND_ you minimize the window (yellow button) _OR_ bring another window to foreground
  • when slowed because of AppNap, simply waving the mouse cursor over the window fixes the issue temporarily until AppNap again decides to throttle it
  • _HEADLESS_ is not effected
  • have not yet tried "attaching" a head after launching headless
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Re: VirtualBox runs slow on MacBook Pro 2018 (screen refreshes slow)

Postby socratis » 6. Jul 2019, 16:19

THANK YOU @PikeSandwich !!! 8)
Couldn't find the thread and the ticket? I'm getting slower, or my coffee is not working any more... :?

And in your case you were talking about background performance, not foreground slowness, right (now that I remembered it)? So, actually it may not be something that's related to AppNap after all...
Do NOT send me Personal Messages (PMs) for troubleshooting, they are simply deleted.
Do NOT reply with the "QUOTE" button, please use the "POST REPLY", at the bottom of the form.
If you obfuscate any information requested, I will obfuscate my response. These are virtual UUIDs, not real ones.
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Re: VirtualBox runs slow on MacBook Pro 2018 (screen refreshes slow)

Postby PikeSandwich » 6. Jul 2019, 16:41

socratis wrote:And in your case you were talking about background performance, not foreground slowness, right (now that I remembered it)? So, actually it may not be something that's related to AppNap after all...

correct, my performance issues were only when the guest window was no longer foreground.
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Re: VirtualBox runs slow on MacBook Pro 2018 (screen refreshes slow)

Postby Samuele » 10. Jul 2019, 15:03

I also have problems with slowness and lag. I installed Ubuntu 18.04 on macOS host (MacBook Pro 15 2018).
I have seen that there are also other users who are experiencing problems.

Has anyone solved it?
When will an updated version of VB be released that solves it?
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Re: VirtualBox runs slow on MacBook Pro 2018 (screen refreshes slow)

Postby socratis » 10. Jul 2019, 15:15

Samuele wrote:Has anyone solved it?
Yes, but we're keeping it a secret, only the elite knows. :) :P
Of course not! I suspect you can read previous posts, no? If you didn't read anyone saying "I solved it", then no one has solved it!

Samuele wrote:When will an updated version of VB be released that solves it?
If the problem can't be easily reproduced by the developers (and I haven't heard anyone saying that they did), rest assured that it won't be easily addressed. It can't if they can't reproduce it.
Do NOT send me Personal Messages (PMs) for troubleshooting, they are simply deleted.
Do NOT reply with the "QUOTE" button, please use the "POST REPLY", at the bottom of the form.
If you obfuscate any information requested, I will obfuscate my response. These are virtual UUIDs, not real ones.
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Re: VirtualBox runs slow on MacBook Pro 2018 (screen refreshes slow)

Postby Samuele » 10. Jul 2019, 15:28

Yes I read the previous posts.

Maybe you can't reproduce the problem because the developers don't have a recent Mac.
For example on my MacBook Pro you need to do little to reproduce the problem.
- I installed VB v6.0.8 r130520 (Qt5.6.3)
- I installed the updated GAs
- I installed Ubuntu 18.04 starting from the configuration proposed during the creation of the VM and then also doing other tests (increase the ram, the CPU, etc ...)
- The result is always the same. The virtual machine is slow.

In my opinion, if Oracle also develops for the Apple platform, the product should also be tested with the latest hardware released.

In any case, I am confident that sooner or later it will be discovered what the problem is and it will be solved.
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