Taking a clearer look into deepest macOS: DispatchView 0.2b1

The first beta release of DispatchView showed all the right log entries, but as so often with logs, it was hard to see the wood from the trees. My primary aim in this second beta release has been to aid its use.

To do that, I have eliminated unnecessary fields from each log entry. In the left pane, for DAS entries, I have had to retain all the fields because they do contain useful information. However, in the right pane (CTS) two of the four fields remained identical across all the entries, and have been removed. You no longer need to view the window on the full screen of a 27 inch display to make sense of it.

The other feature that I have added is to embolden some of the log entries to draw attention to them. These are:

  • on the left (DAS), all those entries reporting a rescoring. These are when DAS decides which activities should or should not be run.
  • on the left (DAS), all those entries in which there is a DecisionToRun of 1, in other words the activity is to be run. Although DAS entries censor all the useful identifiers so that you don’t know which activity is going to be run (really, Apple, that info has to be censored?), these should match entries in the right pane (CTS).
  • on the right (CTS), all those entries which mention DAS, which includes most notably those in which CTS states that DAS told us to run the named activity. The latter should match slightly earlier DAS DecisionToRun entries of 1.

The following crop from a screenshot may give you an idea as to how these now work out, although I wouldn’t recommend that you cover your display with red marker (and if you want to, you discover a scrollable marker pen)!


You should find that this puts to bed the idea that DAS is something to do with Handoff, or that GCD doesn’t control Time Machine backups but CTS does. You’ll see a lot of your Mac’s background activities – many which you never knew existed, perhaps – which DAS selects from its heuristic-driven list, and passes over to CTS to run. Are DAS and/or CTS part of GCD? Until Apple tells us in its long-promised reference document, we’ll not know for sure, but they don’t seem to be part of anything else which we can identify.

In order to style the text, I am starting to parse the entries, which means the next step is to gather useful information from them.

I hope that this is a worthwhile update; here it is: dispatchview02b1
and, as ever, in the Downloads item above.