Mac Maintenance Myths - Page 2
Myth 4: Regularly Run Unix Maintenance Scripts
Mac OS has a set of UNIX scripts, which are supposed to delete previous/ old log files or temporary files and rebuilding Unix’s locate and whatis database. By default, these UNIX scripts are programmed to run on daily, weekly and monthly basis and it is often emphasized that these scripts should be run regularly. The reality is that frequently running these scripts is not helpful because the old log files help Mac OS X in easy and quicker access of data.
It is correct that if your Mac is switched off, the scripts do not run. If you have decided to let these scripts run as these are scheduled and these do not one day because your Mac was switched off, the situation won’t become worse as you might think. It is because a couple of missed executions will not have a bad affect on your Mac.
Myth 5: Clean the caches
Frequently accessed data is stored in a nearly located small memory called Cache. The operating system itself and some applications store frequently accessed files in the cache. Whenever the application requires a file, it first searches for it in the cache and if it is not found in that, it looks for it in the hard disk. In most cases, the file is found in the cache and this hugely reduces the access time, which results in increased processing speed.
However, it is often recommended that the cache data should be deleted on a regular basis but doing this actually add additional work to the operating system. If these files are deleted, the system will need to search for the file in more distant location (hard disk), whose speed is also slower than cache (RAM) and it would require more time to fetch it from there. The system will also need to recreate copies of these files and place them in the cache again and again. This would be more of a liability than gaining advantage from the cache.