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Five Ways To Make Your Mac Run Better

written by: Donny Yankellow•edited by: Rebecca Scudder•updated: 4/6/2011

If your Mac is suffering from slow startup or if the applications run slow, here are a number of steps you can take to make your Mac run better.

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    Steps To Making Your Mac Run Better

    On occasion you Mac may not be running as well as it could be. While there might be something wrong with it that requires repair, it might just need some TLC. Here are some easy steps you can take to boost the performance of your Mac.

    1. Find resource hogs.

    You can see which applications are consuming most of your system’s resources. You can get this information by opening Activity Monitor (Find it in Applications > Utilities). If you think an application is using more resources than normal, quit and restart it and it should run better next time.

    2. Clean up your startup.

    There are often many programs starting up when you log onto your Mac. Some of them are Mac OS’s own programs and some are the programs you later installed. If you do not need any application to run automatically at the startup, go to System Preferences > Accounts and open the Login Items tab where you can disable applications from automatically starting, simply by selecting an application and clicking the ‘-‘ sign. Doing this will give your Mac OS better startup performance.

    3. Remove unwanted applications.

    It is always a good idea to remove unneeded applications from your system. Doing this will free up some space for use by other important applications or your operating system. Keeping 1/3 of your hard disk free will considerably improve your Mac’s speed. To uninstall an application, use the uninstaller or remove it from your Applications folder.

    4. Remove unnecessary widgets

    Dashboard Widgets consume both vital processor and RAM resources at all the times, even when you aren’t viewing them. Most Widgets especially those which access the Internet to get updated information are resource hogs, as they are always downloading something.

    So it is better to remove all the Widgets that you do not use. To remove a widget, open the Dashboard Widget screen by pressing the F12 key. Then click the “+” button at the bottom-left of the screen. Click on the “x” sign beside the Widget to make it inactive.

    5. Do disk maintenance.

    Mac OS comes with a great utility program called Disk Utility. You should run it on regular basis (ideally once a month) to verify and repair disk preferences and disk permissions. Disk Utility can be found in Applications -> Utilities.


    If Disk Utility does not do the trick there are third party applications available. I prefer Disk Warrior by Alsoft. If is a great piece of software and fixes many problems. It isn't cheap, but well worth the investment.

    Please also visit How To Keep Your Mac Happier for information regarding maintaining your Mac computer.

    If you are new to Mac, Top Ten Tips For Every New Mac User contains valuable information for you to read. Also read Applications Every New Mac User Should Download to find out which applications you should download.

    Everyone wants to capture something on his/her computer desktop. How to Capture a Screenshot with Mac OS X? tells you how you can do it on Mac OS X.

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    Article is based on experience of the author.

    Screen shot taken by the author.