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A possible issue with iPhoto and background CPU usage Apps
In Process Viewer, I found iPhoto2 was using 20 to 35% of the CPU on my 1GHz PowerBook, even when hidden in the background! This was after going through and editing a few hundred JPEGs and then emptying out the library from within iPhoto. So it was just sitting there, hidden and empty.

After quitting and restarting iPhoto then hiding it, it maxes out at under 2% in Process Viewer. So it seems it will continue to leech resources after activity, but not if started up and then hidden and left dormant.

[robg adds: Somewhat vaguely related to this hint's topic, in testing this hint (I wasn't able to replicate the issue described above, but I'm also not able to exactly duplicate the conditions as I won't risk deleting my library for the sake of a test), I saw some strange figures out of 'top' (the Terminal's version of Process Viewer) for iPhoto2. After launching and not doing anything, CPU usage hovered around 40% to 50% (on a G4/733), just sitting in Organize mode in the background. It didn't make any difference if the window was minimized or not; it just sucked CPU time. But when I clicked into Edit mode, CPU usage dropped below 20%. If I clicked back into Organize mode, CPU usage shot up to 50% again.

Thinking it had something to do with my Organize view mode (black background, no shadows, border), I opened up the prefs and turned off borders. CPU usage dropped down under 20% again. But then I turned the borders on again, and CPU usage remained below 20%! So it clearly wasn't view options that were causing the problem.

So I quit and restarted iPhoto, and let it sit in Organize mode for several minutes, all the while churning away at 50%+ of my CPU (in the background!). I thought maybe iPhoto was doing something to the 2,000+ images in my library each time it launched (and I just happened to time it right when I was switching view settings in the first test). It appears this theory is correct, as CPU usage eventually dropped under 10% (and stayed there) without my changing any settings. Does anyone know what iPhoto might be doing for those first two or three minutes after it launches??]
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A possible issue with iPhoto and background CPU usage
Authored by: diamondsw on Mar 11, '03 10:45:48AM

It's possible it's caching thumbnails of all of your photos. Just a guess.

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A possible issue with iPhoto and background CPU usage
Authored by: mrgerbek on Mar 11, '03 11:37:04AM

I love and hate iPhoto. Its got several issues that should have been worked out long before now. I wonder if there's going to be a Mac version of Adobe's Photoshop Album?

Be Green

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A Random Guess
Authored by: DeltaTee on Mar 11, '03 12:31:20PM

I think that it is likely that it is caching and confirm the contents of the iPhoto Library, to make sure nothign has changed.

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A possible issue with iPhoto and background CPU usage
Authored by: ashill on Mar 11, '03 01:10:08PM

I also think that it's caching all the photos in the Library. A bigger issue for me, with my 5.6 GB hard disk and 320 MB RAM, is that it needs a ton of memory to cache all those photos--iPhoto normally forces the OS to create 3 or 4 virtual memory swap files almost immediately when it starts up, chewing up a substantial portion of the ~1GB disk space I have available. iPhoto 2 didn't cache photos immediately, which made it a bit slower when scrolling (although not much slower in practice on my machine, since it's effectively just caching them in virtual memory rather than reading the files directly)--I wish you could turn caching off in iPhoto 3.

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A possible issue with iPhoto and background CPU usage
Authored by: Fofer on Mar 12, '03 12:55:57PM

To speed things up IMMEASURABLY, "View as Albums" and then option-click on just one of the fold down menus to collapse an album. All of the albums will immediately collapse, and you can then scroll through your albums via their textual names. When you find the one you want to look at, just click the arrow again to uncollapse it.

Since iPhoto isn't drawing all of your thumbnails as you scroll, it makes the app that much faster to scroll through.

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Yep I guess it's caching thumbs...
Authored by: yorran on Mar 11, '03 01:53:08PM

You must all be right about thumbs caching & CPU usage : my iPhoto app is set to start by showing film rolls and my rolls are always closed at startup.
For a test I opened iPhoto and watched CPU usage by the "top" command : it climbed to 60% for a second or two, and then went back to 0% and stayed there... so far with a Tibook 400 ! :-)
My guess is, iPhoto didn't need to cache anything at startup, therefore it had nothing to do.
I waited some time, then played with the views and options, and then got back to closed roll : the usage returned to 0% when in background.

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A possible issue with iPhoto and background CPU usage
Authored by: mervTormel on Mar 11, '03 03:40:31PM

$ sudo fs_usage iPhoto

shows that the app is pretty busy. iphoto needs to be running before fs_usage can catch the app.

you can fs_usage | grep -i iphoto to watch it from launch

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