MacBooks or any Mac computers for that matter (iMac, Mac Pro, MacBook Air etc), even with their powerful hardware configurations, have a tendency to slow up once in a while, especially when you compare its current speed to the speed it showed off when you first brought it home, when it was brand spanking new.
In this post, we will show you some simple but effective tips that will help you speed up your MacBook Pro, so you enjoy your Mac’s full performance capabilities.
MacBook Pro running slow or Your Mac running slow? – Common Fixes
1. Using Mac Cleanup Programs to Clean Up Your MacBook Pro’s Hard Disk, Resulting In Faster Speeds
A program like CleanMyMac 2 can instantly fix a bloated hard disk problem for you, freeing up several GBs of hard disk space in just a few minutes, with just a few clicks and just one single run or scan. Users have generally experienced a 45% to 60% increase from slow speeds on their MacBook Pro, after performing a single cleanup run with this program.
CleanMyMac 2, winner of several prestigious awards, including About.com’s Reader’s Choice Award, is a Mac Utility software that can help to speed up your slow Mac in several ways, as mentioned below. CleanMyMac 2 will also give you a great way to keep running maintenance chores on your MacBook, keeping it light and speedy.
How CleanMyMac 2 can speed up your slow MacBook Pro and other slow Macs?
- Frees up hard disk space to dramatically improve processor and memory performance
- Uninstalls unnecessary slow programs and apps that you never use or run
- Cleans out your application starting line up, resulting in really fast boot up times
- Cleans up your iPhoto folders, removing photo duplicates with just a click
- Helps you find very large, old personal files and presents them for deletion, allowing to free up even more hard disk space
- Deletes system junk, cache junk, languages and binary junk that can all lead to a faster running MacBook Pro
Not only will CleanMyMac 2 allow you to speed up your MacBook Pro, it can also be used as highly efficient and intuitive maintenance software to ensure that your Mac never slows in the future.
2. Hardware upgrades
Hardware upgrades, though quite expensive, can be the best way to end your slow MacBook Pro problems. Even if you are on a tight budget, you can still enjoy significant performance improvements by investing in RAM for your MacBook Pro or an SSD for your MacBook Pro.
You are looking at a max of about $200 for a 8 GB RAM upgrade and a max of about $400 for a 1 TB SSD upgrade, both of which can skyrocket your MacBook Pro’s performance levels. If you can afford it, do it by all means. There simply is no better way to speed up your MacBook Pro. Here’s a good Lifehacker article that talks about what all can be upgraded on your MacBook Pro.
3. Resetting the System Management Controller
Every MacBook Pro has an inbuilt hardware function called System Management Controller. Most people never run the reset though! While we won’t get too technical to explain its various functions, we will tell you that running a reset of this controller can sometimes tremendously help in improving the speed of your Mac.
Don’t worry, resetting this controller will not harm your Mac in any way. It won’t even change any of your content or user settings. It just resets the hardware and in most probability,will make your MacBook run faster, run much faster than before.
How to reset your MacBook Pro’s System Management Controller?
- Turn off your MacBook Pro
- Plug in your MacBook Pro’s power cord into the wall socket
- Now, hold down the Left Shift + Option + Control + Power Button, simultaneously, for 10 seconds
- When you do the above, your Mac won’t power on but a reset will be registered
- Release all keys after 10 seconds and turn on and run your MacBook Pro like you normally do
- Your MacBook Pro’s slow performance problems are hopefully solved!
Please note that when you press the above mentioned combination of keys, your MacBook Pro should not turn on. If it does, you probably didn’t press one of the keys properly. Do it again until you are able to press down all mentioned keys for 10 seconds, without powering up your MacBook Pro.
4. PRAM Reset (Updated on 23, March 2014)
Just like the SMC reset discussed just above, another reset called the PRAM reset has also quite a few Macbook owners fix performance problems on their MacBook Pro, putting an end to MacBook Pro running slow problems.
Again, like the SMC reset, the PRAM reset will not delete your user generated data when you run it. The only thing you might have to restore after carrying out this reset is probably some system preferences like time, date etc., something that will take you just a two minute run, at the most.
How to carry out a PRAM reset to fix slow MacBook Pro problems?
- Shut down your MacBook Pro
- Press the power button
- Press Command + Option + P + R in combination, all at the same time, before you see the grey startup screen
- Press and hold until your MacBook Pro restarts
- Release the keys when you hear the familiar startup chime sound that your MacBook Pro makes when it starts up
- Your PRAM reset should be complete
5. Check for Power Hungry Apps
Sometimes, your MacBook Pro running slow performance problems can be caused by just one or two apps, apps that are very resource hungry, apps that hog all your processing and memory resources, causing your MacBook to run slow.
To check if your MacBook is being affected by such apps, please carry out the following check.
- Go to the Applications Folder
- Select Utilities
- Select Activity Monitor
- Select CPU tab, shown at the bottom
- Check the % Idle statistic
- If your % Idle statistic is always less than 60% or 50%, some of the apps you are using are using up way too much memory than what is normal
- Check the list of active apps to see which apps are the culprits, the culprits that are slowing down your MacBook Pro
- Uninstall thise apps. If you need the apps, look for an alternative apps that are more compatible to run on your MacBook Pro. You can also try re-installing that app to see if it will consume less resources after a re-install
6. De-Clutter Your Desktop
If you are like many of the amateur MacBook Pro users out there, chances are that there are about a 100 icons on your desktop. What you must understand is that these icons are not static. In other words, your MacBook Pro’s processor is constantly checking up on these icons, every time you run your Mac, making sure that the links are always live and ready to go.
That process takes up a lot of memory and CPU resources. Try to limit your desktop icons to just 10 or 15 icons. As for all the remaining ones, you can put them all in a folder called, let’s say, “Second Desktop” (Folder name is just an example, you can use what you like). That way, you will de-clutter your desktop and also not be too far away from all the shortcuts that are important to you.
Other ways in which you can potentially fix your MacBook pro running slow performance problems is to buy and install more RAM, install a SSD (Solid State Drive) hard disk and also use just a few apps at one particular time, reducing your multi-tasking work. All these fixes can help speed up your MacBook pro to various extents. Many of these tips will also help you keep your MacBook running fast, in the long run as well.
We hope this post helped you find at least some answers to your question; “Why is my MacBook pro so slow!?” If you have any personal tips, strategies or advice that you used to speed up your MacBook Pro, please share them with us. We would love to hear from you! Use the comment box below to get involved!