According to MacRumors Apple may bring back their rainbow logo. MacRumors have allegedly received tips from someone who has spoken to an Apple employee in Cupertino. In what type of Apple product the old logo could be used is pure speculation. The source didn’t specify that.
The rainbow logo appeared in 1976 and was used to early 1998.
I could see that Apple would like to use this logo on new watch bands, or other lower volume accessories. We all know that Apple is all about design, and I think the time is right to use something more colorful. I see this in home decoration as well. A few years ago everyone wanted white walls, and minimalistic styles with little color use. Nowadays I notice people want more color in their life, maybe this gives the rumor some validity?
Apple recently released an update to their MacBook Pro lineup. This update covers the 13 and 15 – inch MacBook Pro models with Touch Bar.
You can now equip the 15 inch model with up to 8 core i9, 2,4GHz with turbo-boost up to 5,0GHz.
The 13 inch model is getting a few speed bumps: 2,3GHz to 2,4GHz and a new maxed out model with 2,7GHz. They are still keeping the four core eight generation cpu for the 13 inch model.
Design wise there are no changes compared to earlier models. (There are some rumors floating around that Apple works on a 16 to 16.5-inch MacBook Pro for possible release 2019.)
The 13 Inch with no touch bar did not get any updates at this time of writing.
Whats more interesting is that Apple have made modifications to their keyboards again. The updated MacBook Pro models come with a new version of their butterfly-keyboard. Apple have replaced the material to something more reliable. It remains to be seen if this so called new material will fix the keyboard issues or if its just marketing speak. Something Apple is extremely good at.
If you already have a 15 and 13 Inch with keyboard issues you should be able to replace the keyboard with an updated version on some models. Apple have increased their keyboard repair program to cover basically all macs from 2015 with butterfly keyboard issues.
Is your Mac running slow, not what it used to be, starts to feel sluggish, slow and unresponsive? Sometimes when this happen people go out and buy a new computer or learns to live with it. Buying a new computer is probably not a smart move, especially if you can easily fix the issue yourself. You should at least exhaust all options before you decide to go that route. A lot of issues is tied into software, and that makes it possible for you to fix at home saving you some money.
1. Shut down your Mac
Have you tried turning it off and on again? Ever heard this? Its not a joke… Your Mac can be turned on for weeks or months without any serious problems, but every now and then a shut down is recommended. It is often hanging applications and similar that in the end can make the computer feel slow and sluggish. So if you haven’t already: please start this guide with a shutdown of your computer. I promise this guide will be here when you come back online again. If you are lucky, maybe this is the only thing you have to do!
TIP: Bookmark this page, press CMD + D to add a bookmark in your browser.
Choose Shut Down from the Apple () menu.
If your Mac won’t shut down it could be applications that prevents it from doing so. You may have to force-quit some of them.
Press the key-combination pictured below:
In the window that pops up, try to quit the application from there.
If none of these suggestions help you just have to hold the power button down on your Mac for about 5 seconds to force it to shut down.
If you are lucky, maybe this is the only thing you have to do! If not, go back to that bookmark when you have restarted and read on.
2. Check your Startup Items
When you install applications during the time you use your Mac some of them may add themselves in Startup Items. This causes them to start at every login and thus take up a little memory and a little CPU usage. If you do the following: Apple Menu > System Preferences > Users & Groups > Login Items. You will see how many startup items you have. If you want to remove some of them just click the name of the startup item and then hit the minus button. Just make sure you know what you remove so you do not remove any critical system component. Remove start up items you are sure isn’t needed because it can contribute to your Mac running slow.
3. Clean up in System Preferences
While we still have System Preferences open take a look under the section called Other (or at the bottom section). If you have a lot of items down there there is a chance that some of them is not in use by you. They might be left overs from some application you tried out, or something else. You should clean out these too. In most cases you can turn it off from the preference pane itself.
To remove, just right-click on an icon, and choose remove from the Preferance Page. Before you do that though, I recommend that you check if the Application you want to remove have an uninstall feature. Big software packages such as Adobe, and others usually have an uninstall utility hidden in Applications/Utilities
Poke around in those folders first.
4. Activity Monitor is Great for Frozen and Slow Mac Apps
Do a spotlight search for Activity Monitor and start it up. You will probably see a window looking like the one below (don’t mind the Norwegian language):
What you would like to do here is to click on CPU and then sort after highest % CPU. Let it sit for a while and you could see an app that takes up a significant amount of your Macs CPU cycles. This could be one reason your Mac is running slow. If you recognize the application try selecting it and click the X button located below the small red, yellow and green window buttons. If you don’t recognize the app do a quick google search for it and find out what it is. (You obviously know how to Google since you got here!).
Hopefully its an application making your Mac slow, and it usually is. This way you can identify It and take necessary steps. Those steps should be checking for an update of the application causing troubles. Uninstalling it, or maybe check for some alternative? If not, then read on for more useful tips and applications that could help.
5. Make Time Machine backup when YOU want
Apple likes to hold your hand, and that is probably smart in 98% of all cases. Especially when we talk about backing up your critical data.
Time Machine is a good backup solution. But it backups every single hour and especially if you work on heavy files it will create some noticeable slow Mac performance when it starts the backup process. Time Machine doesn’t have a switch that enable you to start the backup off working hours but there are people that have solved this problem. The free app TimeMachineEditor will help you with that. I have tried it myself and it works just as advertised. Take care while messing with the backup though. Even though this app is working as it should and have done so for many years it is still third party. Meaning Apple could make some changes to Time Machine in the future that may break the settings and in worst case disable your backups. So make 100% sure that your backups are there.
If you just started the backup, please realize that the initial time machine backup could slow down your Mac. This is in some cases expected behaviour and you should let it complete the initial backup. When its done the performance should get back to normal.
6. Clean up your hard drive
Eventually your hard drive will fill up, it doesn’t matter how big it is. Many people experience this and many also ask themselves where all the free space have gone? Maybe your Photos library starts to grow? Maybe you are editing videos that take up a lot of space. Or you might have a lot of downloaded stuff you never got around to delete. Your Mac works best with a little free space to work with. It use a part of that free space as virtual memory and that memory is important for your Mac to work optimally. Please make sure to delete unneeded files and also remember to empty your trash! If you forget to empty the trash you will still have the free space problem and possibly a Mac running slow.
Buy Clean My Mac to clean your Mac automatically in an very easy and safe way. Also read my extended article on how to reclaim more space on your mac. Where I also review the software I suggest you buy above. Its a free download so you can see how it works on your system before you buy anything. And, no. This is not one of those “bad” cleaners out there.
With that said, we have free options as well, so continue to scroll down and check out those first if you want. 🙂
7. Download Onyx or CCleaner (it is free)
Onyx verifies the Startup Disk and the structure of its System files, it also allows you to run miscellaneous tasks of system maintenance. It can clean the cache, repair system permissions and also execute maintenance scripts. This tool is old and trusted among many Mac users and running it could help speed up your Mac.
Another good cleanup tool is CCleaner. I use this tool to clean up Windows computers and now its available for Mac users. These two tools may overlap some but you won’t do anything wrong if you try both.
8. Download Malwarebytes Anti-Malware for Mac (it is free)
Maybe you have clicked on something that you shouldn’t click on and your computer got some adware slowing it down? Malwarebytes Anti-Malware is a free (accepts donations) application that scans your computer for known adware and removes it.
9. Update software to prevent a slow Mac
Once in a while Apple releases software updates. It is wise to install these because they often contain improvements. It can be security improvements or performance enhancements that can solve slow Mac performance in some cases. Even firmware updates in some cases. Also check if you can download updates to your already installed third party applications, this can also improve performance and stability.
Updating software on your Mac is done through the App Store.
Click the icon and see if you have anything to update.
10. Move your Photos Library to an External Drive
If you have a lot of photos and videos, they can take up a lot of storage on your Mac. If you sync everything with your iPhone it could fill up fast. Many of us skimp on storage space in our macs. Because its expensive. Especially in newer models where you have no option of upgrading after buying.
Newer Macs have features that automatically optimize the internal storage, but doing that optimization also demands system resources. That is why moving your photo library to an external drive could be beneficial.
Its pretty easy, and here is the short version:
Make sure that photos is shut down. Then, copy the entire photo library to your external hard drive. This may take a while depending on size of library, speed of hard drive, etc..
When the copy operation is done, you hold down the Alt/Option key and launch Photos.
“Choose Another Library” and navigate to your external hard drive and select the library you just copied.
In Photos, go to preferences and click Use as System Photo Library.
Use the Photos app for a bit, add some photos. Delete some photos that you dont like. Shut down the Photos app, open it again. Just to check that everything works.
When you have verified that the photos library on the external drive is operating correctly. You can delete the library on your main drive. Thus reclaiming a lot of storage space.
I recommend having backups, in case something goes wrong.
11. Turn off Visual Effects
Most macs are made so they are able to run their operating systems smoothly with the default visual effects. If you want, some visual effects can be turned off and it may give you a small increase in speed.
Go to: System Preferences > Dock and disable the following:
Automatically hide and show the dock
Animate opening applications
You can also change “minimize windows” to scale effect.
12. Try a PRAM / NVRAM and a SMC Reset
If you dont know what is wrong with your Mac and just want to try something. Do a PRAM reset. This will not damage your computer or remove anything from your hard drive. But it may solve strange problems. If you have issues regarding sound, display resolution, startup drive selection, time-zone and kernel issues a pram reset could help.
Turn your Mac off, then turn it on and immediately hold all keys pictured above down. That is option + command + P + R. Release the keys after about 20-30 seconds. Your Mac will probably restart during this. For older Macs that have the startup chime you can release the keys after the second chime.
For iMac Pro you can let go of the keys when the Apple logo shows and disappears for the second time.
Another thing you could try is an SMC reset. Especially if your laptop have problems accepting power or wont charge. Strange fan behavior or low performance.
Shut down your Mac.
Plug in the power adapter to a power source and to your Mac.
On the built-in keyboard, press the (left side) Shift-Control-Option keys and the power button at the same time. (it should NOT boot) but the LED on your MagSafe adapter may change.
Power on the computer.
13. Reinstall your OS / Install the newest OS X, its free!
If nothing of the above helps maybe a full format of your hard drive and a reinstall of the OS may be the only viable solution. If you have a fairly new Mac (2010 – 2011 ish) you should be able to start from the recovery partition if you hold CMD and R when you restart. From there you can reinstall.
Start up from Internet Recovery: hold Command + Option + R when you boot until spinning globe appears. Then let go of the keys. Let it load and reinstall OS X this way. When your computer and account is set up. Open App Store and update to the newest OS X available for you. Even if you have a old Mac it may be able to upgrade to a newer version of OS X.
14. Upgrade your Slow Mac with SSD & RAM
This tip mostly applies to older Macs you can upgrade. Mostly pre 2012 models.
If your computer is very slow it can be a symptom of a hard drive that is going bad especially if it makes strange noises. This applies to all types of computers not only Macs. Make sure to check the hard drive using Disk Utility and if it finds any errors make sure to backup what you can right away.
Max out the RAM in your computer, especially if you run a lot of apps at the same time. Another extremely recommended option is to replace the hard drive inside your older Mac to an SSD. If you havent experienced SSD storage you are in for a treat! It will blow your mind in terms of speed and it can breathe new life into older computers for sure. That is probably why the entire Mac lineup is SSD-based now.
Solving slow mac performance using money to buy new hardware is one option of course. But you should try the others first. (Although SSD is extremely nice to have, you never want to go back!).
I hope this guide helps you to get your Mac in shape. If you liked this guide, it will really help me and this site if you share it with others on Facebook, twitter etc. You will find the buttons for that below. Also check out Clean My Mac. It is a suite of tools that help with deep cleaning.
Update: This may not work with AFPS filesystems. See comment nr 2 below this post.
From macOS Sierra, Apple introduced some space-saving features in their OS. One of those features are saving content in the cloud. When you turn this feature on it can save photos, movies, email attachments, and other files that you seldom use in iCloud. The file will stay the same place on your computer, but download at demand when you need it. Purgeable space are files that are safely stored in iCloud and can be deleted on your physical drive by the system.
I decided to really test this feature.
I have a big photo collection from over 10 years, its about 850GB in RAW files. I wanted to have every file available to me when I use the laptop and not having to drag an external drive along. The only problem is that SSD storage is extremely expensive so the laptop I use have 512GB internally.
So I started Apple photos and started importing photos (using this script: Import Folders Into macOS Photos). It started to upload the images to iCloud, but after a while I got messages about the drive being full and the upload stopped. I had to delete some files in the library to get it to upload again. When the initial 350GB upload was done I expected to get some more free space because I had turned on “Optimize Mac Storage” in Apple Photos. But I never got more than about 12GB free.
I let the computer sit for an entire day, but the available space remained the same. (Around 12GB). That didn’t cut it when I still had 400GB to upload. So I started searching the web about how to free purgeable space, but as I have found out the OS itself controls this. Meaning you can’t set a target size yourself. However you can fool the system by coping large files to the drive.
What I would do is use a termal command you see in the selection below:
So this creates a 20GB file but I had to wait until Apple Photos app had finished uploading. I then proceeded to duplicate this file a few times. After that I deleted the files I made and doing this gave me more “real” free storage. So now I could upload the rest of my images.
I believe that when you do this, it makes the system think that you suddenly need a lot of storage and it will free up purgeable space for you. But I am not entirely sure how the process work to be honest here.
Another way to force remove Purgeable space on Mac
You can use a mac maintenance application like Clean My Mac X to do it for you. This app is made by the same people that develop Gemini 2: The Duplicate Finder, currently rated as “editors choice” in the App Store. A lot of mac claners are pretty fishy, but Clean My Mac X is legit and will work fine. You can read more about it here: Prepare for macOS Mojave with CleanMyMacX (Review). It has a lot of other cleaning features in addition to cleaning purgable space.
The link to CleanMyMac X is an affiliate link, and purchasing the software will give me a small percentage of the sale to help paying to run this site.
Occasionally a clean install of macOS is the only thing that can solve problems with your Mac. This because it is difficult to pinpoint exactly whats causing issues with your system. In addition: if you have tried the suggestions in the articles below. Its probably time to try this last step: a clean install of macOS. I know the hassle to do this, especially if you have years of data laying around. Still, its probably less work to do a reinstall comparing to sending it off to someone. The positive aspect of doing this is that your system will feel fresh and new again.
Try the suggestions in these articles before you do a clean install. Or jump down to Preparing to install macOS to get started now.
This is a given, always backup your data. I assume you read this article because you want to solve a problem with your Mac. Therefore I won’t tell you to use time-machine to create your backup this time. My goal of this article is to get your reinstalled system to be as lean and untouched as possible while retaining as much as possible of your data. Although I recommend using time machine to do your backups. However, if you have a software issue with your system there is a risk that time machine brings that issue over to your new installation with its backup.
When your system is reinstalled, data copied over and made sure is working correctly. Then go ahead and start using Time Machine for your new backups.
For now, I want you to prepare an external hard drive, copy all of your personal data from your user folder (pictures, music, downloads, documents, desktop etc) over to that drive.
Amazon have a huge selection of cheap external hard drives. Make sure to get one with a little more capacity than your Macs drive. Disk utility, a tool in the /Applications/Utilities folder can show you the size of your internal drive. You might as well find it because you are going to use it later on if you follow this article.
In the backup, do not forget things such as browser bookmarks, notes, archived e-mails. Obscure apps you never are able to find again. If you have saved files outside of your user folder, make sure to include that as well.
Some applications are back-up-able by just coping the application file itself from the Applications folder. This usually works with simple apps. Software suites like Adobe or Microsoft Office often need to be re-installed again.
Check App Compatibility
Are you coming from an old version of Mac OS X and use older software you have to make sure the apps you want to use works on the version of macOS you plan to install. This is done with a quick google search. If not, you need to research and find out if there are new versions available. Or maybe there are some good open source alternatives available now.
Make sure you have original installation media for apps you are using, or have a way of getting hold of software before you initiate a clean install of macOS. Its not always as easy as just coping the application over unfortunately.
Install DVD, USB or Internet installation?
If your backup is ready now is the time to figure out how you should install macOS fresh. In my opinion a fresh install includes formatting your hard drive, wiping everything on it and starting the installation.
If your system is somewhat working, or if you have access to another Mac I would download the latest available installation from the App Store. I would close the installer that opens after downloading and create an installation USB stick using the free software: DiskMaker X. You will need an 8GB+ USB stick for this step. We don’t want to install macOS over an already problematic installation. We want to format, and do a clean install.
Make sure to unplug any backup hard drive connected to your Mac! Only connect the USB stick you just created. You don’t want to accidentally delete your backup drive when installing, right?
Restart your Mac while holding the Option (⌥) key down. After a while you should be able to start up from the usb stick you just created.
Erase and repartition your drive
When you are in the installation you should be able to find utilities and disk utility. From there you should create a new partition / wipe your hard drive.
A Warning: Erasing your drive destroys all data on that drive. Make absolutely sure that your backup is alright. Again, remember to have your backup drive disconnected while you do this to prevent accidentally formatting your backup drive.
Click on View and select Show All Devices.
Click the device in the sidebar you want to format and click erase.
Give it a name, for example Macintosh HD.
In the map-popup menu select GUID Partition Map.
Click erase, then Done.
Exit out of disk utility and you can proceed with the installation of macOS.
You can initiate Internet recovery if you don’t have access to a working Mac or are unable to create USB stick. This installation routine will download the macOS version that came shipped with your Mac. Meaning if you want to upgrade to a newer version you will have to do that through App Store after installing via Internet Recovery. You can go ahead and upgrade directly from macOS at this time, after you have made a clean installation it should be fine.
To initiate an internet recovery: Restart, hold down the Command (⌘) – Option (⌥) – R key combination immediately upon restarting. When you see a spinning globe you can release the keys and let it load, it may take a good while as it has to download several GBs of data. I recommend doing this with an ethernet cable connected to your router if you can. It works on WiFi as well though.
You can buy the installation DVDs directly from Apple. As of this writing its still possible to buy Snow Leopard directly from Apple. Go to the online store and search for it. You can get installation DVDs from amazon and probably eBay as well.
To start up from a DVD you hold the C key pressed during startup. This tells the Mac to boot from the DVD.
Post Installation Steps
When you have created your user account and are inside a new, freshly installed system. The first thing you should do is to update your system by starting App Store, and let it update.
If your system is older, click the Apple symbol in the menubar and update from there.
When everything is up to date, and your system is running alright my recommendation is that you try using it for a while before copying over your backup. If things are running smoothly then you can go ahead and copy over your personal files and the data you backed up earlier.
Check again if you can access and use everything. If thats the case I recommend formatting the external drive you used, and configure it as a Time Machine backup drive instead.
When you have a new system up and running I recommend checking out the articles below:
Intel released their new 10nm-based architecture called ‘Sunny Cove’ today. This could be new CPU candidates for upcoming unreleased 2019 MacBooks from Apple.
As with every new generation Intel claim these chips will offer even greater performance with reduced power loads. Machine learning, AI and cryptography will also be faster on these CPUs. We have heard talks about the 10nm architecture since 2015, but manufacturing problems have prevented release until now.
The current generation (late 2018) MacBook Pros use 8th Generation Intel Core CPUs with a 14 nm-based architecture.
This doesn’t confirm that Apple will use sunny cove in new Macs, but its a likely choice. We could see the end of Intel CPUs in at least Apples lower end laptop products. Considering Apples own A12 Bionic chip shows impressive performance numbers even outnumber some laptops today.
If you watched the Apple event where they released new Macs and iPad Pros they also had a section showing the critically acclaimed role playing game Divinity: Original Sin 2. It turns out the game is on its way to the Mac and not in a small way. This will not be a poorly and sloppy port, It will take advantage of many Apple technologies such as making it a 64-bit, Metal native game.
Just check out this spec list.
64-bit Metal 1.2 support
eGPU support (10.13+ only)
V-sync support (10.13+ only)
MacOS Support for 10.13 and 10.14 macOS with potential for (10.12 support likely but still in the works)
Support for Apple MFI controllers and rumbling support on selected controllers
MacBook TouchBar support
MacBook trackpad and selected gestures support
Divinity: Original Sin 2 have sold over 2 million copies. Its one of the most highly rated role playing games and could easily be the best RPG on the Mac. Apples Metal Team is working with the developer to bring this game to the Mac. Planned release is Q1 2019.
The game will support iCloud backups, but not only that you will be able to cross-play between Windows and macOS.
Torchlight 1 & 2
You should check out a game called Torchlight. It’s an action RPG game developed by people who previously have worked on Diablo, Diablo II, Mythos etc. The music is composed by the original author that made the music for Diablo.
Somewhat cartoonish graphics but it works, and the game isn’t so demanding for your computer. You don’t need the most high-end gaming rig to play this game. I have played the game and it is pretty nice. You can download it from the Steam client.
Torchlight 2 is also out.
Eschalon: Book 1, 2 & 3
Eschalon is an old-school style fantasy RPG. The game-play perspective is in third person. You guide your character around towns and dungeons. Fighting monsters and picking up treasures while all other elements of a good old RPG are there. Many reviewers give this game high ratings. This is not an old game, it is just developed in that particular style.
Who doesn’t know about this game? Diablo 3 is available through battle.net. You can watch a video below where I test it on a MacBook Pro 2016 w/ Radeon Pro 455 in (2560 x 1440).
My absolute favourite app for macOS has to be Magnet. Its a window manager for macOS that works in a lot of similar ways to the native Windows manager. Drag a window to the right or left of your screen and it resizes the application in half. Making room for an application next to it. Or drag the window to the top, to maximize it. It is a great way of keeping the workspace organized.
Its a cheap application and you can get it from the app store in macOS.
Another great way of getting new apps to your mac is by using the service Setapp. They often add new applications to their constant growing catalog. This way you are getting more value for your money with time.
Setapp is an subscription service ($9.99 /mo) that gives you access to a huge list of well known apps. A free 7-day trial is available so you can check it out without paying anything.
BetterTouchTool: Customize input on your Mac! – BetterTouchTool makes the touchbar on the Mac laptops actually usable. You can for example have live update of your cryptocurrency price (if you are into that).
macOS Mojave is right around the corner and before you update its a good idea to clean your system. I have used computers for a long time so I have experience in keeping my systems up and running without issues. To my surprise, CleanMyMac X found a lot of data (26GB!) to clean & remove from my MacBook Pro. 26GB in data stored on your Macs super fast SSD is a lot of money, considering how expensive storage is on Macs nowadays.
Cleaners like this has in the past had some bad rep, but CleanMyMacX is not one of them! The developer: MacPaw makes other applications like Setapp, Gemini and other known highly rated applications.
Using this software is a very simple way of keeping your Mac clean. As you will see in the screenshots below.
As you can see in the images above it found a lot of data lying around that isn’t needed. Data such as system logs, user cache, old updates etc. While you absolutely could go into these folders yourself and delete the files its convenient to have an application that does this for you. You could also drill down into the folders to see exactly what the software removes so you have full control.
CleanMyMacX have an improved algorithm for finding junk that doesn’t need to be on your Mac. Saving you precious time. MacPaw have created a reliable Safety Database that prevents cleaning mishaps and carefully treats all user data. CleanMyMac doesn’t delete any of your personal files or useful app data unless you want it.
I have been using Clean My Mac for a few years now and it has never done anything bad to my system. The screenshots above are true screenshots from my own system and I have used the computer for a week after running the cleaning it and it still works as good. No issues, no slowdown, no bloat.
Other than cleaning your Mac it has a Malware scanner that checks for malware and adware. It can also check and update apps installed outside of the Mac App Store.
One thing I really liked is the updated menu bar where you see information about your system such as available storage (even on the bootcamp drive!). Available memory that you can free up with a click. CPU load, network usage and battery status.
You can also see your dropbox usage there if you have it. I don’t, I use google drive and iCloud.
As I said earlier, you could go into all these folders and delete files yourself. However you have to have knowledge about your system and you have to know exactly what to remove. If you use CleanMyMacX you don’t have to worry about that.
I recommend this software. I never really thought I would use something like this myself but clearly its a time saver so for me its worth it. The retail price is about $90 for a one-time purchase or $40 per year for a subscription. Its a bit pricey perhaps, but it does a good job. And again, do not confuse CleanMyMac X with other bad cleaners out there. If you want one, this is the one to get.