So you bought a beautiful piece of machinery called a Mac a while ago. For a while, everything was hunky-dory and your Mac zipped along as if it has nitrous cylinders in it. But lately, you’ve been noticing a distinct slowing down of the system and there seems to be nothing you can do about it. Familiar story? Don’t worry, you are one of millions who experience the same situation. Fret not though, help is at hand. Following is a list of simple, yet hitherto little known steps you can take to inject some speed into your system!
Get a processor upgrade
The most common step that people take, and perhaps also the most obvious, is that you could try and upgrade the processor. Though this is a sure shot method that works, it is a little obtuse since it is expensive, and secondly the upgrades of only some of the new models are available easily in the market. Also, it can tend to be quite a complicated process involving a lot more work than you had originally imagined it would take. Therefore, this is one step that not many of us would be keen on, especially if we told you that there are other, simpler methods to speed up your Mac.
Get rid of extra clutter in your HD
You have to clear up your boot drive a little in order to create space for some virtual memory to run. This is such a simple step that many of us skip it, leaving it for later. But now is a good time to clear out some boot space by deleting old and redundant files and using secondary memory devices for storing very large media files. Get rid of useless games you installed ages ago and have never even opened again. Ditto for software, specially shareware which you might have installed on a trial basis and forgotten about. These are akin to termites in your house – you don’t see them but they slowly build up and start weakening the system.
Add extra RAM
The RAM of your Mac is an important indicator of the system speed. Larger the RAM, more is the speed. Therefore, a smart thing to do would be to upgrade your RAM at least to a 2 gigabyte capacity so that there is more space for your system to work with. But let’s face it, not everyone can afford to upgrade RAM all the time so we have to optimise what we have.
Try and work on a single program or application at a time. When too many applications are on and running simultaneously, it consumes RAM like a man who hasn’t eaten for a week. Therefore, if you don’t need a program to be running while you are running some other application, it would be a good idea to close whatever extra programs that are running, or are idle.
Get rid of rarely used peripherals
Try and reduce the number of peripheral devices attached to your Mac. Unplug USBs, printers and scanners etc when not in use. You don’t always need to keep that flash drive plugged in nor do you need that printer to be powered on perpetually. Attach them when needed. Not only do they slow down the system, they also consume useless power when idle.
De-clutterise; So to speak
Keep your system free of unnecessary clutter that might be slowing it down with virtual dead weight. Do a disk clean up regularly and set a schedule for de cluttering your memory space at least once in every fifteen days. Take a good look at your desktop image that forms your backdrop. If it is an animated version, try changing it to a static photograph or any other static picture background that doesn’t take up too much virtual memory. Sure, you love the bouncing animations all over your screen, but wouldn’t you rather do your stuff faster than sit and watch nice looking effects?
There are many programs which run automatically when the Mac is powered up. Most of these programs are ones which you installed ages ago, might have never used again and which smartly add themselves to the autorun list. Get rid of them and you’ll see your Mac power up much much faster. It’s the difference between trying to crawl to work on your knees, and using a car.
Use Tune-up Software
There are some great tools out there for optimizing and speeding up your Mac. Most of these programs will automatically clean and optimize your entire system in just a few minutes. The gain in performance can be quite significant. You can achieve the same results manually, but these programs were developed with the idea of saving you the time and stress of having to optimize the system yourself. Try one out for yourself and see what you think. You can read the full review of Mac TuneUp here.