We don't like to see our computers run at the speed of a beach ball. When they are new, they never give problems, but the use and the passage of time always leave traces. Therefore, we give you a quick guide on how to speed up a Mac, without having to disburse a fortune on an additional RAM or a faster hard drive.
Apple's operating system is very good at optimizing itself, but that does not mean that there are no good ones tricks to accelerate a system that has become too slow.
Go for it!
Update your Mac software
First things first: make sure your Mac is up to date. The latest security patches are essential to keep your Mac running well, and Apple is quite good at optimizing new releases for better performance. Click on the Apple icon in the upper left corner of your screen and select App Store.
Then, click on the “Updates” tab, and click on “Update all”. If you are using a MacBook, connect the charger. The process of updating MacOS and most of its applications, making sure you get the latest security patches and optimizations.
Use the Optimize function
From MacOS Sierra, users have a new option called “Optimize storage” that can be used to free up space and improve speed if you know where to find it, of course. First, go to the "Apple" menu at the top left of the screen and click on "About this Mac." Here, select "Storage", and then select "Manage."
This will give you a series of useful tools, including ways to store all files in iCloud and detect some disorder that you can eliminate (keep the window open when you try our other tips). However, the most useful thing at this moment is to give the option “Optimize storage”. This allows you to do useful things like delete TV shows that you have already seen, download recent attachments, etc. Try this tool, especially if you are one of the many series and movies on your Mac.
Make a quick malfunction analysis
The whole thing that "Macs don't have viruses" is a myth. While it is true that MacOS has certain security advantages because the vast majority of malicious programs are directed at Windows users, Macs are prone to occasional intruders. In fact, Macestn malware on the rise.
Fortunately, there are a lot of free options designed to keep it safe, from scanners to specific tools.
If you don't know what to choose, Malwarebytes for Mac offers a free scan that captures and removes the most common malware found on the platform. It is also quick to do so.
Disable login items
If your Mac takes forever to start, it is very likely that you have too many applications starting along with your system. Disabling these logon items not only speed up the boot process, but also (potentially) free up resources and speed up the system as a whole.
To get started, open “System Preferences” by clicking on the Apple cone on the left side of the menu bar. Once there, click on "Users and groups" and select the "Session logon" tab to see the list of applications that start when your Mac does.
If you see an application that you do not need to start when you turn on your computer (Spotify, for example), select it in the list and click the minus button at the bottom of the screen.
The visual effects of MacOS have been implemented since Yosemite, but some of them do not participate in the speed team, precisely. Transparency is the biggest culprit. Everything is transparent now, so the menu bar takes some of the colors of your wallpaper, among other things. While The Captain really reduced the impact of these effects on performance, you can still gain productivity by turning them off, even in your most recent updates.
The option to do so exists, but it is slightly hidden. Go to "System Preferences" and select "Accessibility." Click on “Screen”, and then click on “Reduce Transparency” so that it is marked.
The user interfaces will stop using the transparency effect once they have been deactivated and everything will run much faster.
Clean your cach
If you use your computer regularly, it is likely that you are accumulating all kinds of caches over time. This takes up space on the hard drive, and it may also be slowing down applications.
Web browsers, with their accumulation of history and massive cachs, are famous for this, so it is a good idea to erase your cache from time to time. But they are not the only programs that create cachs and other files over time, so we recommend that you use CCleaner for Mac.
This free application can simultaneously delete your browser's cache and the cache that your system accumulates over time. Keep in mind that the company also offers a version premium of the software on your site, but the free version is more than enough for most users.
Uninstall the software you don't use
Freeing up space on your boot drive can increase performance, especially if your drive is almost full (this is especially true for older Macs, without SSD). An easy way to save a lot of space is to eliminate applications that you no longer use. If you are the type of person who installs applications that are only used once and then forget about them, it is time to count.
We need to go to your Applications folder and take out the trash. But you should not just drag these applications to the Trash cone, since that usually leaves behind a lot of things you don't need. Instead, consider the free AppCleaner application.
Drag any application to this window and you can also delete all related files, including caches and configuration files. Or, if you prefer, you can browse a complete list of your applications and delete them from there.
For us, this is the best way to guarantee that an application that you no longer want to have on your Mac will not leave anything behind it when you delete it, so you can go and clean your Applications folder. You can also use the Activity Monitor to find some software that occupies a large amount of RAM and make a big difference to the speed of your computer, if you find a less spacious alternative.
Find and delete unnecessary files
And speaking precisely of this: it is likely that the applications are not the ones that take up most of your disk space. They are your files. But what? The free application Grand Perspective offers you a panoramic view of your files, with the largest taking also larger forms. Explore this and see if there is any large file you want to delete or move to an external hard drive for long-term storage.
Another quick way to free up storage space on your hard drive is to delete the languages you don't use. Your Mac speaks several languages and offers a spell check tool among other features that most users do not need.
The free Monolingual application automates this, allowing you to delete language files that you don't want or need. Uncheck everything you want to keep, then click "Delete."
Clean your desk
Here is a quick tip: if your desktop is full of icons, clean it. Your desktop is a window like any other, so if it is so populated that it costs you even to find the files you are looking for, it probably also slows down your system. Even if you put your entire desk in one folder, it will help you, if you are too overwhelmed to order everything.
Disable the dashboard
When was the last time you used the dashboard? Exactly. It was fun in 2005, but in 2018, a collection of widgets that occupy the entire screen amounts to an unnecessary mess. Go to "System Preferences", click on the "Mission Control" icon.
If you still like Dashboard, it is obvious everything said. Also, consider disabling widgets that you don't use, because you stop: they are slowing your computer slightly.
Close the applications but really
Do not be ashamed if you did not know (many people do not know): when you click the red circle with the "x" or the point in the upper left corner of the window you were seeing does not close the application. Actually, it keeps it running, and therefore there is a bright spot under the application in the dock.
To properly close an application, right-click on the cone and select "Exit." You can also close applications using the keyboard shortcut "CMD" + Tab + "Q", which closes any application. Having too many applications open at the same time seriously slows down your system, so closing applications (and good) should be a priority.
Turn to OnyX, if things still don't work
None of this worked? Well, maybe it's OnyX time. This is a free application that runs all kinds of optimizations centered on Mac. Download the appropriate version for your system, install it and start. It is a powerful tool for the user, although it probably should not be used by someone who does not feel comfortable with it.
For starters, the application verify your hard drive, which is already quite useful. Assuming everything is fine, then go to the "Maintenance" tab and then to the "Scripts" section.
From here, you can force the execution of the regular Mac maintenance script. After that, go to “Rebuild” to force MacOS to rebuild a number of different cachs; This can potentially solve the slowdowns. The "Cleaning" section can also help, but it works a lot like the CCleaner we talked about earlier. As for the other configuration tools, feel free to explore, although for the most part, they are not intended to improve performance.