Whatever computer you use, any brand, any operating system, it will get a little sluggish from time to time. Sometimes the reason may be a full hard drive, or sometimes we just need more memory for the new age apps. However, for all other times, we just need to run timely maintenance and tweak the system a bit to get the best computing performance. The following points will tell you how to speed up your Mac in some simple ways.
Clean Out Your Start-up Items
Certain applications or software, launch themselves every time you start the system or login. You might be needing some of them frequently but most of them might have been forgotten about after installation. Your computer has to process them unnecessarily, every time it starts, and thus removing them will ensure that it has lesser and only useful applications to process. Thus, its speed will increase. So, go to Apple Menu → System Preferences → Accounts → Login Items, and remove the ones you don't use.
Recover Hard Disk Space
The OS of your computer uses the free space on hard drive as a virtual memory, which is very important for general computing and processing the data. But, if the hard drive is full, there will be shortage in the virtual memory and your system will slow down. Therefore, free up the disk space by deleting unnecessary applications, emptying the trash can, etc.
Declutter Your Desktop
Mac treats each desktop icon as its own window, which incurs a small memory hit. So, if you have hundreds of icons on your desktop, your Mac is bound to slow down. Some people think this to be a minor issue but for extreme slowdowns every action is vital. Hence, declutter your desktop and move the icons to some other location.
Delete Unused Language Packs
Apple comes with many language packs so that you can experience the system in your mother tongue. But, whatever language you are using, generally you won't need any of the other languages. So, uninstall them for better performance.
Sometimes the fonts installed on your system get damaged or corrupted and occupy unnecessary space. To remove such fonts, Open up Font Book, select all the fonts in the list and choose File → Validate Fonts. Font book will open a new window with icons to show the font's status. Delete all the corrupt or damaged fonts. Although this will not make a huge difference, it will make your system stable and clean.
Smart playlist is a very useful thing for music buffs but it can bog down the working of Apple iTunes as it reloads the songs on the list every time the program starts. If you have a smart playlist that does not vary often, then you should consider either deactivating live updating (by clicking file → edit smart play list) or copying the contents onto a regular playlist.
Update Your Apps and OS
Running outdated versions of software and applications can slow down your computer due to compatibility issues. The latest applications will be more efficient and free of bugs and problems. Thus, they will make your computer faster.
OnyX is a system optimizer that repairs disk permissions and performs various other actions like clearing cache, old logs, and temporary items. It clears out all the junk and detoxifies the system, thus allowing it to work more efficiently.
Cooling is important for every computing device. Therefore, make sure your CPU fan is working fine and is cooling the processor as often as required.
If nothing else works or if you still want more speed, add some more RAM to your computer. It decides the processing speed of your computer, and the newer applications, games, etc., require more RAM.