Any device can wear out in terms of speed after a certain time period, even a mac can. If you are quite familiar with the frustrating problem, you’re at the right place.
It can happen due to a number of different reasons, your drive can probably be packed with files and resources you no longer need or use. And of course, after some years of using the same computer, it becomes our home. We feel uncomfortable using someone else’s devices to complete our tasks as everything seems much easier on our own. Well, that is because our mac has graphics and documents from present and past years stored within it. At our service whenever we need them immediately for use.
However, these graphics and documents eat up a lot of space on the small drive, which fills up quite fast. This causes everything else to slow down and sometimes, literally come to a sudden halt. With the latest iOS 10 gaining momentum, it has been installed on many macs- almost two third according to the estimates. Owners of old macs need to keep in mind the fact that chances are their device cannot handle the latest Apple software updates or Apple OS updates like this. Though the update has loads of new features which have the ability to boost the performance of your mac.
You can surely enjoy the updates and the efficiency of a new mac even if you have an old one with these quick tricks:
Get Rid Of The Dashboard
A dashboard serves as the centralized window displaying all your widgets. It’s not completely obsolete but let’s face it, many of us do not use it anymore. It was popular for some years after its introduction but that was long before.
If you’re one of the majority mac users who does not use the dashboard as frequently, get rid of it to increase your computer’s speed a bit. What is the harm? Use the following Terminal commands to do so:
defaults write com.apple.dashboard mcx-disabled -boolean YES killall Dock
However, if you still use it for your personal convenience, I am not judging, just move on to next tip because the most effective ones are listed below. They might come in handy to you.
Eliminate The Startup Programs
You may find that your mac slows down after you log in. One of the reasons for the same can be the many startup programs your Mac has running on it. Prune these programs immediately and you’ll see a great difference.
Quickly manage the startup programs by navigating to System Preferences > Users & groups. Then you’ll have to select your current account and click ‘Login Items’. Uncheck all the apps you don’t want starting when you log in. Also, if you want a program or app to start of its own accord when you log in, click the “+” button at the bottom of the list and add it. Or you can simply drag and drop the program into this list.
Disable window & Mail animations
We all, at some point, have held the Shift button long enough to slow the animation down just because it was fun. Is the trick worth risking your Mac’s efficiency for? I don’t think so. Ask yourself for once whether you really need those animations. There’re some Terminal commands to disable window animations and mail animations on your mac.
defaults write NSGlobalDomain NSAutomaticWindowAnimationsEnabled -bool false defaults write com.apple.Mail DisableSendAnimations -bool true defaults write com.apple.Mail DisableReplyAnimations -bool true
However, if you do not want to head over to the complicated section, you can also do it via the Mountain Tweaks. It will allow you to make desirable changes easily. Whichever of the two methods you find more convenient.
Hunt Down The Resource Eating Processes
This one is quite adamant as these processes certainly can contribute a lot in slowing your Apple mac down. To view your running processes and find one consuming too many resources, head over to the Activity monitor by pressing C+Space. Spotlight search will open where you will have to type Activity Monitor and hit Enter.
You will see a ‘% CPU’ heading over there, click it to see the CPU usage of different apps and programs you use. There can even be one app eating up about 98% of your CPU. Force-quit these resources consuming apps and processes by selecting it and clicking the ‘X’ button on the toolbar.
Another quick way to do it is via the View menu > All Processes and navigate to different sections including Disk and Memory. Processes you find here are most likely to be slowing your mac down. Shut them immediately and see the effect.
Clean your Mac’s desktop
No matter how much we adore our macs for its beautiful desktop and Apple wallpaper, the apps on there surely eat up a lot of memory. OSX renders every little icon on your desktop as its own window. Even with its own separate preview. Many of us just dump files on our desktop and we have to stop doing that. It can cost us our Mac’s speed.
However, if you are too accustomed to your ways and want your desktop cleaned every once in a while, there are a number of utilities and apps available to do the task for you quite efficiently. You can go for Clean, a free utility available in the app store which takes all your files daily or weekly and dumps them somewhere else for you.
Ensure Some Free Space
Make sure you are not running low on space as that ca cause major damage to the speed of your mac degrading it by 20 to 40 percent. All the caches, virtual memories, files etc are stored on your mac’s hard drive. This causes the operating system to move around looking for some space to free up. However, your drive should never be completely packed up as it may never boot once that is the condition.
Free up some space if that is the case with you to allow OS to do its job and use that space effectively. Experts suggest using half the space on your hard drive which is 50 percent of it and leaving the rest for best efficiency. As the first half of the drive is comparatively faster than the second one. If you are settled the way your mac’s storage is, and more importantly, if you’re one of the people whose macs have almost full storage, this might get really tough. Consider freeing up at least 8 percent space on your mac first.
Some of us face trouble in figuring out what exactly is eating up all the space. If you go through the same struggle, there are plenty of great applications and software for the issue out there. One of which is Disk Inventory X for an easy to understand breakdown of file types and folders. Plus, it’s free.
Use Safari, not Chrome
Chrome is popularly believed to be way better than Firefox or Safari since quite a few years now. People prefer downloading the browser the first thing after opening a new MacBook, MacAir or MacBook Pro. However, all I would like to say to these users is, every glitter isn’t gold. Chrome has way too many cons main of which is that it slows down you mac. People who have been using the browser for some time now will notice that once the browser is closed, everything seems to be faster and more efficient. Many of you might be used to Chrome by now, but with the Apple new beta update, Safari has got way better. Switch your browsers, it’s worth trying.
Close The Applications
We have all done this- left some applications running after using them and not caring to close them all. Also, chances are it is not always your fault. Mac OS X likes to leave applications running in the dock. In this case, the Red X would not work for you most of the time.
The app will remain running in the background. You have to stop looking for shortcuts to do this. If you want your mac to process faster and work like it did a few months ago, close the applications using CMD-Q and not just the Red X.
The Disk Errors Can Be A Reason
One of the most commonly seen issues, it can cause major slowdowns on your mac which you really want to avoid. The reason they infect your device can be power outages can also mean your mac’s drive has caught some error or failure.
You can always check the drive and repair permissions through the built-in Disk Utility. However, you have to make sure both Repair Permission and Verify Disk are running right in order to do that.
Reinstall Your OS
When none of the above work for you as smoothly as you had expected them to. Go for a fresh re-install of your operating system. Some of us are used to cleaning everything up and beginning from nothing all over again for our computer’s efficiency. While others, it can be a nightmare for them. If you’re one of those users, I’d say it is not that bad if you have proper back-ups for everything important.
Re-installing can make what you have always wanted come true. It can speed up your mac with unbelievable efficiency. What is the harm in trying once? However, you will have to re-install all the applications you’re going to need. Make sure you don’t import everything from the back-up or re-installing the OS would be no use at all. Rushing can ruin your hard work and therefore stay calm.