Speeding Up Your Mac
Speeding Up Your Mac


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Speeding Up Your Mac

This book is 100% complete

Completed on 2016-09-18

About the Book

Accelerate Your Mac

If your Mac seems a lot slower now than when you first bought it, it’s not your imagination. Over time, your Mac can become bogged down with extra background tasks, run out of free RAM and disk space, and encounter a wide variety of other issues that lead to slow performance. With expert advice and a little detective work, you can find and fix these problems—returning your Mac to its original, peppy self.

Don’t settle for random tips that may or may not help. In this book you’ll learn how to find and address the exact causes of slow behavior, with before-and-after tests to confirm your results. You’ll discover how to optimize CPU and RAM usage, eliminate disk bottlenecks, improve network performance (including web browsing and email), speed up peripherals, perform strategic software and hardware upgrades, and much more. This book is for all Macs running OS X 10.9 Mavericks or later, including macOS 10.12 Sierra.

  • Uncover Mac performance myths and misconceptions.
  • Learn quick fixes to address common slowdown causes.
  • Diagnose performance problems and run benchmarking tests.
  • Repair file and directory errors that can slow down your Mac.
  • Reduce the demands on your Mac’s CPU and RAM.
  • Improve the performance of your hard drive or SSD.
  • Speed up web browsing, email, and other network activities.
  • Perform simple, inexpensive hardware upgrades to boost your Mac’s speed.
  • Eliminate unnecessary delays in booting, sleeping, and waking your Mac.
  • Get the best possible performance from peripherals (including hard drives, RAIDs, and input devices).

Joe Kissell is the author of more than 50 books on technology, including Backing Up Your Mac: A Joe On Tech Guide and Take Control of Your Online Privacy. He is also a contributing editor to TidBITS and a senior contributor to Macworld, was the winner of a 2009 Neal award for Best How-to Article, and has appeared on the MacTech 25 list (the 25 people voted most influential in the Macintosh community) since 2007.

Table of Contents

  • Read Me First
    • Updates
    • Basics
    • What’s New in Version 1.1
    • What Was New in Version 1.0
  • A Note to Readers
  • Introduction
  • Quick Start
  • Chapter 1 Learn What Makes a Mac Fast (or Slow)
    • The Three Most Important Determiners of Mac Performance
    • Myths, Misconceptions, and Half-Truths
  • Chapter 2 Try a Few Quick Fixes
    • Restart Your Mac
    • Quit Inactive Apps
    • Prune Login Items
    • Log Out of Other Accounts
    • Upgrade Your Firmware
    • Reset the SMC
    • Update macOS
    • Upgrade Your RAM
  • Chapter 3 Diagnose Common Speed Problems
    • Understand Diagnostic Principles
    • Benchmark Your Mac’s Performance
    • Check Your Resource Usage
    • Test Specific Speed Problems
  • Chapter 4 Fix File and Directory Problems
    • Run Disk Utility
    • Check for Damaged Preference Files
    • Check Your Fonts
  • Chapter 5 Lighten Your CPU Load
    • Cut Back on Startup and Background Items
    • Update Your Software
    • Watch for CPU Hogs
    • Pause Background Apps
    • Adjust App Priority
  • Chapter 6 Increase Your Free RAM
    • Reduce the Number of Open Apps, Windows, and Tabs
    • Reduce the Number of Desktop Icons
    • Watch Out for Memory Leaks
  • Chapter 7 Improve Your Disk Performance
    • Tame Disk Access
    • Free Up Disk Space
    • Defragment and Optimize Your Disk
  • Chapter 8 Speed Up Your Browser
    • Quit and Reopen Your Browser
    • Have Fewer Tabs and Windows Open
    • Block Ads and Trackers
    • Manage or Disable Flash
    • Manage Extensions and Plugins
    • Use a Faster Browser
  • Chapter 9 Speed Up Your Email
    • Adjust Checking Frequency
    • Consolidate Your Accounts
    • Keep Your Inbox Trim
    • Optimize Your Rules or Filters
    • Rebuild Mailboxes or Database
  • Chapter 10 Speed Up Your Network
    • Understand Factors Influencing Network Speed
    • Monitor Network Activity
    • Check Your Wi-Fi Connection
    • Check Your Wired Ethernet Connection
    • Use a Faster DNS Provider
    • Test Your Broadband Service
  • Chapter 11 Speed Up Booting, Sleeping, and Waking
    • Understand What Influences Startup Speed
    • Speed Up Startups
    • Manage or Disable Safe Sleep
  • Chapter 12 Speed Up Mouse and Keyboard Input
    • Speed Up Your Pointer
    • Enhance Your Mouse, Trackball, or Trackpad
    • Speed Up Typing
    • Speed Up Keyboard Control
  • Chapter 13 Upgrade Your Hardware
    • Add RAM
    • Upgrade Your Hard Drive or SSD
    • Add an SSD
    • Add a Secondary Drive
    • Use a RAID
    • Add a Second (or Larger) Display
    • Buy a New Mac
  • Chapter 14 Speed Up Your Peripherals
    • Learn About Buses and Ports
    • Optimize USB and FireWire Configurations
  • Teach This Book
  • About This Book
    • About the Author
    • About Joe On Tech
    • Author’s Acknowledgments
    • Credits

About the Author

Joe Kissell
Joe Kissell

Joe Kissell has written numerous books about technology, including many popular Take Control ebooks, with an emphasis on Apple products. He's also Senior Editor of TidBITS and a Senior Contributor to Macworld, and previously spent ten years in the Mac software industry.

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