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Making your Mac lively again

PC Mag has a step-by-step for putting the spring back into your Mac if it’s gotten sluggish under the weight of all the crap you’ve loaded onto it. Basically, it’s a guide to saving all your important data before reinstalling OS X.

(Note to PC users: Don’t gloat. 1. PC Mag recommends you do this every two years, not every every 6 months, as I was doing with Windows. 2. This is to restore snappiness, not to rescue a broken, lumbering hulk. 3. It is way, way easier than reinstalling Windows and all your apps.)


I am disappointed and actually a little hurt that Google’s new virtual world app, Lively, only works on Windows. On the other hand, that it requires Vista I find slightly ridiculous. I run Vista on a high-end PC, and it’s a sign of my dissatisfaction that I do a double-take when I here a software company has written code specifically for it.

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4 Responses to “Making your Mac lively again”

  1. Um… That’s a completely worthless article. Unlike Windows, reinstalling the OS on your Mac isn’t needed. Not every 6 months, not every 2 years. This is a case of computer voodoo… “it worked for my ancestors on PCs… I’ll do the same motions and it should work now.” The main advantages on Windows of a reinstall (esp a format and reinstall) were that you start out with a completely unfragmented disk and a clean registry. There’s no registry on OS X and the OS handles disk fragmentation for you.

    If things are slowing down, make sure you’re not running with a almost full hard drive and that you have enough RAM for what your do. A lot of people start off with one or two things running when they get a new computer… and as they add programs, they find themselves with seven, eight or more programs open or with background programs running (on demand backup, etc). That’s fine, but you might benefit from more memory in that case.

  2. I’ve found reinstalling OS X makes my Mac feel zippier. It may be illusory (I don’t run before and after benchmarks because I’ve never reinstalled OS X in order to make my Mac zippier), and it may well be that going through a set of common sense maintenance steps would do what the reinstall does. Or it could be, as you say, voodoo. But it sure feels good.

  3. The lively.com page says it requires “Vista/XP” which I guess means Vista or XP. Better than requiring Vista, but still an odd move for Google. Why are they building a SecondLife clone anyway? Seems like they got distracted from their mission of “indexing all the world’s information”, and are now either onto “build one of everything on the internet”, or “make as many places to put ads as possible”.

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