IoT | Tracking Your Computer's Memory/Cpu Usage

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The Internet of Things (IoT) refers to the ever-growing network of physical objects that feature an IP address for internet connectivity, and the communication that occurs between these objects and other Internet-enabled devices and systems. In this instructable, you will see how to use IoT though the Mac's built-in program - Activity Manager.

Step 1: Locate Activity Monitor

First, you will want to locate Activity Monitor in the Utilities Folder in the Applications Folder. Go to:


Once you locate it, open it.

Step 2: First Apperance

When Activity Monitor first opens, you may feel a little lost. Here is a breakdown of what everything means and how to understand what it is saying.

Step 3: CPU Tab

When Activity Monitor opens, you will notice that you are under the CPU Tab. Here, each running thread and activity is listed. For example, I took a screenshot of the Firefox Row. The first number represents the % of CPU being used by that application. The second number shows the amount of time that application has been running for. The third number is the amount of threads that the application is running. The Fourth number is how many times that application was been Woken up from Idle state. The Fifth number is the PID which stands for the Processer ID number. This is important in two instances. (1) When you have a program that is slowing down your computer or a program you are reporting to apple. They will be able to tell the application/program by the PID. (2) If you have some kind of malware/virus on your computer and you know what application it is from. For example, if a fake java program is running and using 0% of your CPU while you are running a java application, that is most likely a virus and you can report it to apple with the PID and possible block that PID to help issues be resolved. The last column is the user running the program.

Step 4: Memory Tab

The memory tab is the "capacity" of the computer. Not only is it what you save, but it is also the amount of pressure from other programs. The more active programs open, the less memory available, meaning your computer runs slower. If you suspect adware because your computer is always slow, check here to make sure everything is running that is legit. If you are 100% sure that you found adware/viruses, click on the process, and click the X above Process Name Colum. Then select click force quit.

Step 5: Energy Tab

Not much to see here. Just some of the applications that are using energy from your computer.

Step 6: Disk Tab

In the disk tab, any data being written out or into a disk is monitored here. This means if you save something or a backup is being run, it shows up here. Things it can write out to are, but not limited to: Backup disks, computer directories, flash drives, web servers.

Step 7: Network Tab

In the Network Tab, anything being written out to a network or server is shown here.

Step 8: Why This Is Important

Knowing how to use Activity Manager can help speed up your computer, and have to potential to save you from a deadly computer virus!

Step 9: IoT Relavence

The Internet of Things (IoT) refers to the ever-growing network of physical objects that feature an IP address for internet connectivity, and the communication that occurs between these objects and other Internet-enabled devices and systems. So, by knowing how to use Activity manager, allows you to see what is going to different networks and drives, and let you potentially see a program you make in Activity Manager and send using IoT. It also allows you to stop viruses that are taking advantage of you and the IoT Technology.

Step 10: Robotics Relevance

Today, there are so many forms of robotics and computer technology. This can be from your iPhone, to your tablet or computer, or even automatic wifi. Knowing how to use Activity Monitor allows you to prioritize certain programs to run. Knowing how to do this, you can create and run programs on platforms such as the raspberry pi and make actual robots run based on promoted and terminated scripts or programs via Bluetooth, wifi, or wires.

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    4 Discussions


    1 year ago

    "Learn the basics of Activity Monitor" would have been a more accurate title. There's no IoT (socially defined as using DIY hardware to do creative Internet involved thing development) in this instructable. You aren't even using the internet to look at your Mac's resources... If you're going to really elaborate on Activity Monitor please at least give a "Page Scrapper" that records the data on Activity Monitor, perhaps a basic terminal app and have it sent to a Database and then read by a customized Metric/Analytic service such as Grafana. I'm sorry I just spent like fifteen minutes really intrigued to find out how a user was going to turn resource monitoring into an IoT project and I felt a little let down in that regard. I look forward to more instructables, I hope this comment helps promote a more accurate or in depth project article for next time. Thank you for your time explaining Activity Monitor.


    2 years ago

    Good article. Windows has a similar system called Resource Monitor. Perhaps consider adding information about how to use that application as well.

    Also it's worth noting that not all viruses hide in LaunchAgents, and not all viruses can be terminated without restarting automatically. A virus scanning application is your best bet for finding and deleting viruses, rather than looking for them manually in Activity Monitor.

    2 replies

    Reply 2 years ago

    Also, if you wouldn't mind, could you check out some of my other insturctables and give me some feedback? I would really appricitate it! Thanks!


    Reply 2 years ago

    Thank You for the comment Aliasmk! I will definitely do some research on window's Resource Monitor. Thanks for the suggestion! Also, rereading through the section about a virus, I realised that you are 100% correct, therefore, I took it out. Thanks for the suggestions. I always enjoy getting comments like these that have suggestions. Thanks again!