If the cat on the MacBook Pro paralyzes the synchronization of the iCloud Photo Library ...

Cat slows down photo synchronization

I have a very ambivalent relationship with the iCloud Photo Library. On the one hand, I love them because I snap photos for my blog on the iPhone and can edit them in seconds on the Mac, but on the other hand, I hate them because this synchronization keeps failing for reasons inexplicable to me.

After I recently had one Contributing to forcibly ending the “Photos Agent” process wrote a new post today that deals with the “ThermalPolicy”, which has been monitoring the thermal status of the Mac since macOS Catalina.

Finally a headline that suits my taste. The "Cat-Gate" is born ...: D
Finally a headline I like. The “Cat-Gate” is born… :D

ThermalPolicy protects the system and blocks photo syncing

Since Catalina (further problem reports for this macOS here in the post) there is a new system that actively works against the heat in the Mac, in which when a certain temperature is reached it begins to stop executing processes in order to relieve the CPU.

One of those "unimportant" processes that you have to do without in such a case is the one that is responsible for synchronizing the photo library.

The stopped processes won't run again until you manage to get the Mac cooler - either by cooling the case or by manually closing certain programs that you don't currently need.

Why the cat is not allowed to sleep on the MacBook

Cats are somehow extremely clever in finding cozy, warm places for the 3-hour power nap in between. Anyone who has the first Apple TV will know what I mean. This model was not very energy efficient, which is why it deservedly earned its nickname “warmer plate”. Cats loved sleeping on this thing.

My cat loves to lie around on my MacBook Pro and block the keyboard with his paw at the same time ... after all, I'm supposed to scratch him and not work (Photo: Sir Apfelot).
My cat loves to lie around on my MacBook Pro and block the keyboard with his paw at the same time ... After all, I'm supposed to scratch him and not work (Photo: Sir Apfelot).

Something similar always happens with my MacBook Pro, which usually runs with an external monitor and is therefore folded up on the desk. Of course it's always nice and warm and so it doesn't take long until one of our cats warms up their fur there again.

Unfortunately, the whole thing isn't so great for the Mac, because on the one hand it can hardly give off any heat through the aluminum lid and it also gets the cat's body heat. The result is that the fans start and the... CPU screams for help. And now we get to the title of the article: The Mac naturally stops syncing the photos in the iCloud library.

Suggested solutions for cooling down

There are a few things you can do to get your MacBook Pro cool and happy again:

  1. Remove the cat from the lid and put it on one professional hot plate from the catering sector relocate. Please refractory Fire blanket don't forget so that the cat doesn't get burned. ;-)
  2. Put the MacBook Pro in a stand so it is vertical and out of the reach of cats. The BookArc table stand by Twelve South works wonders here and still looks chic.
  3. Blow out the ventilation slots of the MacBook Pro with compressed air. Often lint and dust prevent proper air circulation. Here I can CompuCleaner electric compressed air blower Highly recommend. I also think it's great for quickly dusting off a shelf.
  4. Sometimes it also helps to ventilate the room so that fresh, cool air can flow through the Mac.
  5. In serious cases you can also get one Laptop cooler to give a chance. Active ventilation also helps cool down the CPU in the Mac and may be a viable solution.

Tips on the side

I have read a few more interesting things on the subject, which I would also like to pass on to you. If you want to know whether the Mac is actually stopping any processes, you can use the Port-Command “pmset -g thermlog” determine the current status. When I was cold I got this ad:

CPU Power notify CPU_Scheduler_Limit = 100 CPU_Available_CPUs = 8 CPU_Speed_Limit = 100

I have another tip in the forum of stackexchange.com found. It was mentioned there that you can use the console (Applications > Utilities > Console) to look for entries with the search term “cloudphotosd”.

This entry came to light for the person concerned, which probably shows that the Mac has classified the synchronization as not important and has suspended it due to the ThermalPolicy:

502: com.apple.cloudphotosd.pending-work: 509E84: [{name: ThermalPolicy, policyWeight: 1.000, response: {Decision: Must Not Proceed, Score: 0.00, Rationale: [{thermalLevel> = 1}]}}] , FinalDecision: Must Not Proceed}

How are you doing? Does the synchronization always run smoothly or do you also have dropouts that occur under certain circumstances? I am always happy when I can hear other opinions and ideas about such Mac problems.

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In the Sir Apfelot Blog you will find advice, instructions and reviews on Apple products such as the iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, AirPods, iMac, Mac Pro, Mac Mini and Mac Studio.