A couple of weeks ago we published the article “How to speed up your Computer“, and since then we have had many clients ask us to write one specific to Mac OS X. Apple computers are great for keeping your iPhone and iPad media stored away easily, and Apple computers have a great reputation for user friendliness. They are also great at keeping away viruses, and malware but they are not immune. Over time many Apple users notice the computer slows down, or is not keeping up with newer Macs. We will go over the top 10 ways to speed up your Mac.
Top 10 ways to speed up your Mac
1. Declutter your desktop
One of the top ways to speed up your Mac is to remove as many desktop items as you can. Go ahead, and put them in a folder titled “Desktop items” or something similar. This way the computer does not have to keep each little icon saved in your computer memory while you are using it. The fewer items that you have on your desktop, the less the computer needs to load. Imagine your Apple desktop similar to your desk which you work at. The cleaner you have your workspace organized the more efficient you can be. The same concept works with other computers as well.
2. Adjust your system preferences
Mac OS X Yosemite is the latest version of operating systems released from Apple and it includes some features which are more difficult for the computer to run. If we make a couple of adjustments it could speed up your computer without changing your experience too much. An easy item to begin with is to adjust your Dock; this changes the effect of when you are opening and minimizing other windows. You may also want to adjust your transparency to make it easier on the computer, this is a small adjustment which takes some stress off your graphics processor. The last thing we recommend is to remove unnecessary widgets from your dashboard, these require extra resources if they are not used and can be removed.
3. Use Third-Party Software to clean your system
As a computer is being used it collects temporary files, old updates, and system logs that can clutter your system. Luckily, there are a few great free tools which you can use to speed up your Mac computer. CCleaner works for Mac and PC and is great for removing temporary, useless system files within different applications on your Mac. Another tool that we recommend for advanced users is OnyX. This program will do an initial scan of your start-up disk, and provide you with recommendations on how to speed up your Mac.
4. Use the Disk Utility to repair the Disk and Permissions
One of the most useful tools for Apple Service technicians to speed up your Mac is the Disk Utility. Many times there can be errors on the disk from the Apple computer not shutting down properly, and many other normal tasks will change your permissions. These items should be maintained regularly to ensure your disk is working properly. If your startup disk is having issues, it will show system wide. Go ahead and open the Disk Utility application by opening the Utilities folder in “Applications”. Once you have it open, we recommend repairing the disk first, followed by repairing the permissions after.
5. Reset PRAM, NVRAM, and SMC
Each Apple Mac computer has a small amount of memory which it stores settings like speaker volume, startup disk selection, and other quick access items the computer needs to operate. However, sometimes the memory in the RAM can load each time the computer is started and cause problems, like speeding up your iMac fan, and other unwanted features. Apple provides great information on their website on how to reset each of these items, and more on why they are important. We recommend starting with resetting your PRAM and NVRAM followed by resetting your SMC. This should clear out that memory and give you a clean boot.
6. Disable Startup Items
Some applications want to run each time your computer starts. Sometimes these utilities can be useful for cloud services, and some can be unwanted toolbars which need to be removed. An easy way to speed up your Mac is to open the Apple System Preferences and then open “Users”. From there Select the “Login Items” tab and view the applications that start each time your computer runs. The Apps with a checkbox next to them will display on the startup, and the ones without will be hidden. Go ahead and remove any Applications which you do not want to run.
7. Update your Operating System
Many times with updates are released for an operating system they contain many small fixes which can improve the performance of the computer. These changes can be a security patch, or make a small adjustment which may have been a previous issue. Make sure to always keep your Mac updated by opening the “App Store” application and selecting the “Update” tab. Small updates in different programs can make a big difference in while trying to speed up your Mac.
8. Speed up your Hardware: add an SSD and RAM
When your computer is brand new it is very fast, and works great. But as time goes on, you notice other computers with newer applications, and new features that you want to use also. However, as technology moves on these Applications require more and more resources from your computer. Once your computer is a couple of years old it may be the right decision to spend a few dollars and put some new hardware in there. RAM is the memory which your computer uses for applications that are running. So increasing your RAM capacity allows your computer extra breathing room top operate and is a very easy way to speed up your Mac. After that, replacing your Hard drive with a more efficient Solid State Drive (SSD) is one of the best upgrades you can do for your computer. SSD’s tend to keep less storage, but it can access that information much faster, and as time moves on the price per Gigabyte will continue to drop.
9. Analyze your Activity Monitor for Applications Not Responding
The activity monitor is a great place to view each of your applications running on your computer. It can give you a clear view of how much memory each program requires, and if any applications are acting up. By disabling applications that are not responding your can quickly speed up your Mac. The Activity Monitor application is located in your Utilities folder on your Mac. We recommend keeping this App in your dock to access quickly if you are experiencing problems frequently.
10. Get expert help to speed up your Mac
We try our best to provide each of our clients with the information they need to accomplish their goals however, sometimes it can be too difficult for your self to speed up your Mac. Even with all of the tips we gave you, your Mac may require some advanced techniques to get your system running like normal again. Our on-site computer technicians can provide you Apple Service at your location the same day. Call us at 619-400-7581 or contact us online to have an Apple technician help you speed up your Mac.