Troubled with a slow Mac? Here are the common causes

There’s seldom anything more frustrating for a Mac user than their system working slowly. Internet browsing is sluggish, applications take ages to open, and you are left waiting for a long time to finish a simple task that would have otherwise taken five minutes. But what is the reason behind your Mac’s poor performance? Let’s explore some of the common causes. 

Your hard drive cannot breathe anymore 

Spare storage space is required for your MacBook to run smoothly. If your hard drive reaches its capacity, it will start to run slowly. So, you need to remove some of the files and clear some data. 

To check your system’s disk space, click on the Apple icon > click on About This Mac > click on the Storage option and see the breakdown of your primary disk. You can hover your mouse pointer over the color section to find out what they are. 

Then, you need to remove some of the files and programs that you no longer need to free storage space. You can also consider transferring your files to the cloud. If you have a USB hard drive, you can store files there. But external drivers might get damaged or lost. Therefore, the cloud is a better option. 

Your system is running low on RAM

The RAM or random access memory is where all the temporary memory is stored, while the hard drive is used for long-term storage. If your system is running low on RAM, everything you do will take longer. However, you can get back some speed by killing the background processes. 

To check if your system’s RAM is full, navigate to the Activity Monitor from Applications > click Utilities. Next, click on the Memory tab and look at the Memory Pressure graph at the bottom. 

You have plenty of RAM left if the graph is green. If the graph is yellow, you are running low on RAM. If the graph is red, your system’s RAM space is completely or nearly full. 

If you wonder how to free up RAM on Mac, you can free up RAM by closing some applications. But even then, some of the applications might continue to keep things in random access memory. In that case, you have to navigate to the Activity Monitor to stop the processes or programs. Alternatively, you can install a Mac memory cleaner to clear out the files taking up a lot of the system’s RAM. These apps will help you automatically clean and stop the processes hogging the resources. 

Another option is to add more RAM to your system so that all the processes can run smoothly. But you have to check the model of your system because you might not be able to add RAM to the newer models.  

macOS is not updated 

Sometimes, your Mac might slow down because the macOS version is not updated. You always have to check for updates and ensure your OS is updated. With every new update, advanced features, bug fixes, and better compatibility are added to the new version. 

Navigate to the Apple icon and click on About This Mac to see if there are updates and install them. Next, you need to click on Software Update, and if there are any updates available, you need to click on Update Now. 

Too many apps running in the background 

The MacBook is a powerful machine, but there are limits to how much your system can handle simultaneously. For example, running too many applications and programs at once might slow down your Mac. 

Quitting the useless applications running in the background will help your system pick up the space. Use the dock to check quickly, and the apps hogging the system resources must be quit. After checking which apps you don’t need anymore, you need to right-click on each active application and click Quit. 

You’ve installed too many browser extensions

Your Internet browser might play a role in slowing down your system. Some of the common culprits are the installation of too many browser extensions. While extensions can be quite useful in several ways, they can slow your system. You can manually or automatically remove the extensions to speed up your system. 

Since most Mac users use Safari, this post talks about how to uninstall extensions from Safari. But if you are using Chrome, you need to go through an online guide to see how to remove extensions.  

To remove extensions from Safari, go to Safari and click on Preferences from the menu bar. Then, click on Extensions and go through the list of available extensions. Finally, delete or uninstall the irrelevant extensions. 

The bottom line 

These are some of the reasons why your MacBook might be running slowly. The solutions in this post should help you fix the issues without running to the service center. 

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