When you don’t really need a laptop for mobility but require a fair bit of power at home or in the office, that’s where Mac mini comes in. It is a compact desktop Apple computer that nevertheless is quite powerful, which makes it a productive tool much loved by designers, developers, and accountants. But with time even Mac mini starts to run slower and slower. Why is it happening and how you can make Mac mini faster?
Why Mac Mini Becomes Slow
Many Mac mini users experience seemingly unprovoked slowdowns and lags. Usually, Activity Monitor shows nothing suspicious; everything that is running should be there. But anyway, the Mac is running slow. What’s the problem, one wonders?
Well, we will leave aside hardware issues as spending several hundred dollars on replacing HDD with SSD and increasing RAM is not always an option. So let’s go through software part. In this regard, the reasons why any Mac starts to perform not so fast as it used to when it was new are quite typical and common for the vast majority of users. Mainly, they can be grouped into four classes:
- Free space shortage – hard drive is almost full;
- Running too many apps simultaneously – RAM is jammed to the rafters;
- System junk – cache, temporary and leftover files and other garbage clutter your Mac;
- Non-optimized MacOS and apps – the operating system and apps take up too much resource.
So when the next time you wonder “Why my Mac mini is running slow?!“, you can be sure that whatever that is, it’s one of those. Or a combination of these factors. Or – if you’re down in luck – all of them at once. But hey, now, when you know what could possibly go wrong, we can move on and brief you on how to fix the problem in several relatively easy steps.
How to Make Mac Mini Faster
In this chapter, you will learn several gimmicks that would help your Mac run swiftly and rapidly again. And the best part about it is that you don’t need to be a MacOS developer or a programming guru to make it happen. Let’s start.
- Free up memory
Running too many apps and processes at the same time is another essential factor that greatly influences Mac mini’s speed. When resource-hungry items eat up all RAM, and there’s not enough free hard drive space to activate virtual memory, your Mac can literally freeze. You should stop applications you’re not using at the moment via the Activity Monitor.
Another component of this issue is a cluttered list of startup items. First, they make your Mac mini boot for ages and then slow it down by pointlessly running in the background. Hence, go to System preferences and thin out unnecessary Login items.
Cleaning hard drive
Nowadays, a direct correlation between Mac or PC performance and the volume of available free space on the hard drive is quite typical for computers manufactured in the last five years or so. Hence, when you wish to speed up Mac mini, the first thing you need do is to free up as much space on your disk as possible.
Embrace yourself and get rid of large old videos and game installers, zillions of photos, duplicates, ancient email downloads, and other files that are absolutely not necessary when you work with your Mac. “OK, but I need all my stuff,” you might say. No problem, just move it to the cloud or external storage device – we simply cannot think how to justify suffering poor performance due to keeping all this data on the hard drive.
Getting rid of system junk
Over time, gigabytes of garbage data pile up in the system wasting precious hard drive space and memory resources. Caches (system and application), logs, development and uninstall leftovers, broken login items, hidden trash bins, universal binaries, and so on, and so forth… They all just won’t clean up themselves – you have to take care of them on your own.
And one more thing: tidy up on your desktop finally. It’s very easy to stick files on the desktop while convincing yourself that you’ll move them to where they really belong a bit later. Of course, you never do it. As a result, your main screen is a total mess with dozens of junk files that you no longer need. Just clean it up. Now.
Optimizing MacOS and apps
Non-optimized OS and applications will almost inevitably lead to conflicts in your system, and eventually, Mac mini would slow down. The absolute minimum of what you could do to make things right includes: repairing permissions; disabling disk encryption and Spotlight indexing; reducing; removing unnecessary system preferences and browser extensions; cleaning widgets on the Dashboard; change animated wallpapers to static. And of course, don’t forget to check for MacOS updates.
Now, armed with this knowledge, you are perfectly ready to make a move on any issue that compromises your Mac mini’s performance. We can only add that when it comes to implementing all steps mentioned above in practice, you have two options.
One: you can do it manually, presumably spending a couple of hours under the hood of your Apple computer like a real geek. Two: you can take advantage of helpful software tool developed especially for making your Mac perform faster or even fly like new again. Luckily, there are plenty of such apps out there, so you shouldn’t have any problems finding the one that suits your needs the most.