Remember when you first bought your Mac? Remember how when you took it out of the box and started using it how fast and how smooth it ran? Well, chances are it doesn’t run like that anymore. A few years of use can take a serious toll on any computer, but thankfully there are ways to reverse this, especially on Macs. So, if you are an avid Mac user but you have been a little upset lately at the sluggishness of your device then the following tips are exactly what you need as they will help you get your Mac back to the way it used to be (mostly) without upgrading the hardware.
Limit Your Browser Extensions And Plugins
Your web browser can get cluttered very easily just like your computer can. It’s super easy to install browser extensions and then completely forget that you have them. If you want to speed up your MacBook Pro try uninstalling all those old extensions or plugins that you aren’t using. This is especially important for those of you using Chrome as this browser can easily become overweight.
Is Spotlight Re-Indexing Your Computer?
Did you just download a software update? If so, it can sometimes take a while for Spotlight to rebuild its index of all of your files. This could be one of the reasons your device is running slow. Check if Spotlight is indexing by clicking on the magnifying glass icon in the upper-right corner of your desktop.
Empty That Browser Cache
If the majority of your slowness is coming when you are on the internet then it could be that your problem is your web browser, not your computer. Empty out your cache to increase performance. Each browser has a different way of doing this but you’ll usually have to go to the Settings menu and go to History in order to clear it out.
Visual Effects Are Cool But Unnecessary
Are you using a lot of cool visual effects on your Mac? If so then this could be a reason for slow performance, especially if you are using an older model. To turn off these visual effects slightly change the way your iMac minimizes windows to the dock. To do this, go to System Preferences > Dock. Switch Genie effect to Scale the effect. The Scale effect animation is far less cumbersome on your Mac. Cranking down the transparency your Mac uses is another option. Just go to System Preferences > Accessibility and click the box under Reduce Transparency.
Get Rid Of Useless Apps
Apps are very good at taking away your system’s memory. If you downloaded a game or an app that you are no longer using then get rid of it. If you need it sometime down the road then you can always reinstall it later.
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Clean Your Hard Drive
The longer you use your MacBook Air the easier it is for your hard drive to get cluttered. Delete old movies, photos, podcasts, music, and other files that you are no longer using. This is the absolute best way to clear up your hard drive which, as a result, will speed up your device.
Check What’s Going On In The Background
Your Mac Pro comes with an Activity Monitor that allows you to check what’s running in the background on your computer. This can alert you to programs that may be running that you were unaware of. Closing these background processes will speed up your Mac and it’s easy to do. Just type in “Activity Monitor” in Spotlight search. This will show you how many programs are taking up memory on your computer and give you an option to end them.
Clean Your Desktop
When you open up your laptop or desktop to you see hundreds of shortcuts all over the screen? If you do then you should probably get rid of some of them. Sure this may seem worse than Spring cleaning at your mother’s house but doing so can actually speed up your Mac. OS X treats each and every desktop icon as a small window with its own memory footprint. Reducing the number of icons on your desktop is a good way to increase performance.
Close Unused Apps
Apps can take away a lot of memory if you have a lot of them running. There are some cool keyboard shortcuts that Apple has to make exiting apps easy. Holding Command, Control and the Media Eject keys will quit all apps and restart the computer. Just make sure you save everything first before doing this.
Don’t Forget About All Those Open Browsers
Open tabs in browsers take up memory too, even if it is a small amount. However, all these small amounts can build into one large amount if you’re not careful. Do you just keep opening up tabs without closing out any of them? If you’re this kind of person then you should really get into the habit of closing windows when you are done with them.
Restarting Your Computer Never Hurts
I know, I know. I sound like one of those cliche annoying tech support guys who just mumbles, “Uh, have you tried turning it off and turning it back on again?”. But sometimes your laptop or desktop just needs a good reboot to get back to the speeds it used to be at.
Make Sure Your Software Is Up-To-Date
Most of the time a software update fixes bugs and glitches that could slow down your device. Check for any and all software updates that you might need to install of OS X. Simply click on the Apple icon in the upper-left hand of the screen and select Apple Store. Most of the time your iMac will issue a desktop notification to alert you when you need to update but check anyways, it never hurts.
Don’t Launch A Ton Of Apps On Startup
If you have your MacBook or iMac set to launch a ton of apps whenever you startup your device then it is going to take a while for it to boot up. You can figure out precisely which apps are programmed to launch on start by clicking the Apple icon and going to System > Preferences > Users and Groups > Login Items. This list will show you all the items that start up with your computer. Simply check the boxes next to each app and click the minus button at the bottom of the window to remove them.
That’s all there really is to it. If you follow some, or all, of these tips and your problems are still persisting then you may have something a little more serious wrong with your device. If this is the case then you need to take it into your local Apple Store and have them take a look. However, I hope this list helps you and gets your Mac up and running like it used to in no time!
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