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Why mountain lion is so slow ?

4493 Views 15 Replies Latest reply: May 10, 2013 6:13 AM by NorwalkMacUser RSS
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iustinianos Calculating status...
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Sep 17, 2012 7:13 PM



I have a MacBook Pro (tech specs are below) which is dramaticaly slower than before after updating Mountain Lion (as an update on OS X 10.7.? (I don't remember the last digit but there wasn't launchpad yet) which was alos an update on 10.6). My Mac became a Windows-PC. It takes 1 minute to boot it up, >30 sec to shut down and slowness say I am here even during daily use.  I deactivated start-up items. I have repaired disk permissions and disk by disk utility as recommended. I checked and find that I have some incompatible or suspected-to-be incompatible programs such as Adobe Illustrator and its relatives. But I don't use these programs very often. I have no anti-virus programs.


I thought going back to Lion but it is not at the App store anymore. Any suggestions will be really appreciated. Thanks in advance





MacBook Pro 15" Mid-2010

2.8 Ghz Intel Core i7


500 GB SATA 7200 rpm with >100 GB free space

MacBook Pro, OS X Mountain Lion (10.8.1)
  • macjack Level 9 Level 9 (50,445 points)
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    Sep 17, 2012 7:19 PM (in response to iustinianos)

    iustinianos wrote:




    I deactivated start-up items.

    Do you mean Login Items in System Preferences?

    Have you tried starting in Safe Mode and see if the problems still occur?

    Restart holding the "shift" key.

    (Expect it to take longer to start this way because it runs a directory check first.)

  • macjack Level 9 Level 9 (50,445 points)
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    Sep 17, 2012 7:25 PM (in response to iustinianos)

    You can call Apple Phone Sales to order Lion. But there's no reason ML shouldn't run well on your hardware.

    Did you try a reinstall by booting cmd-r from your Recovery Volume?

  • Linc Davis Level 10 Level 10 (107,955 points)
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    Sep 17, 2012 8:14 PM (in response to iustinianos)

    First, back up all data immediately, as your boot drive might be failing.


    Take these steps when you notice the problem.


    Step 1


    Launch the Activity Monitor application in any of the following ways:


    ☞ Enter the first few letters of its name into a Spotlight search. Select it in the results (it should be at the top.)


    ☞ In the Finder, select Go Utilities from the menu bar, or press the key combination shift-command-U. The application is in the folder that opens.


    ☞ Open LaunchPad. Click Utilities, then Activity Monitor in the page that opens.


    Select the CPU tab of the Activity Monitor window.


    Select All Processes from the menu in the toolbar, if not already selected.


    Click the heading of the % CPU column in the process table to sort the entries by CPU usage. You may have to click it twice to get the highest value at the top. What is it, and what is the process? Also post the values for % User, % System, and % Idle at the bottom of the window.


    Select the System Memory tab. What values are shown in the bottom part of the window for Page outs and Swap used?


    Next, select the Disk Activity tab. Post the approximate values shown for Reads in/sec and Writes out/sec (not Reads in and Writes out.)


    Step 2


    You must be logged in as an administrator to carry out this step.


    Launch the Console application in the same way as above. Make sure the title of the Console window is All Messages. If it isn't, select All Messages from the SYSTEM LOG QUERIES menu on the left.


    Post the 50 or so most recent messages in the log — the text, please, not a screenshot.


    When posting a log extract, be selective. Don't post more than is requested.


    Important: Some personal information, such as your name, may appear in the log. Edit it out before posting.

  • Linc Davis Level 10 Level 10 (107,955 points)
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    Sep 18, 2012 7:32 AM (in response to iustinianos)

    Please read this whole message before doing anything.


    This procedure is a diagnostic test. It’s unlikely to solve your problem. Don’t be disappointed when you find that nothing has changed after you complete it.


    The purpose of this exercise is to determine whether the problem is caused by third-party system modifications that load automatically at startup or login. Disconnect all wired peripherals except those needed for the test, and remove all aftermarket expansion cards. Boot in safe mode* and log in to the account with the problem. The instructions provided by Apple are as follows:


    1. Shut down your computer, wait 30 seconds, and then hold down the shift key while pressing the power button.
    2. When you see the gray Apple logo, release the shift key.
    3. If you are prompted to log in, type your password, and then hold down the shift key again as you click  Log in.


    *Note: If FileVault is enabled under OS X 10.7 or later, or if a firmware password is set, you can’t boot in safe mode.


    Safe mode is much slower to boot and run than normal, and some things won’t work at all, including wireless networking on certain Macs.


    The login screen appears even if you usually log in automatically. You must know your login password in order to log in. If you’ve forgotten the password, you will need to reset it before you begin.


    Test while in safe mode. Same problem(s)?


    After testing, reboot as usual (i.e., not in safe mode) and verify that you still have the problem. Post the results of the test.

  • Linc Davis Level 10 Level 10 (107,955 points)
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    Sep 18, 2012 8:09 AM (in response to iustinianos)

    Startup in safe mode will be slow, but shutdown should be fast, and applications that are not graphics-intensive should run at normal speed, or close to it. Also, some system caches will be rebuilt and that may have a persistent effect.

  • Linc Davis Level 10 Level 10 (107,955 points)
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    Sep 18, 2012 10:30 AM (in response to iustinianos)

    Back up all data to at least two different storage devices, if you haven't already done so. The backups can be made with Time Machine or with a cloning tool such as Disk Utility. Preferably both. You must be certain that you can restore everything to the state it's in now.


    Boot into Recovery, launch Disk Utility, and erase the startup volume. This operation will destroy all data on the volume, so you had be better be sure of your backups. Install OS X. If your Mac was upgraded from an older version of OS X, you’ll need the Apple ID and password you used to upgrade, so make a note of those before you begin.


    When you reboot, you'll be prompted to go through the initial setup process. That’s when you import the data from one of your backups. For a walkthrough, see here:


    Using Setup Assistant


    Don't import the Guest account, if it was enabled on the old system.


    Note: You need an always-on Ethernet or Wi-Fi connection to the Internet to use Recovery. It won’t work with USB or PPPoE modems, or with networks that require any kind of authentication other than a WPA or WPA2 Personal password.

  • Sass Level 2 Level 2 (330 points)
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    Oct 6, 2012 8:59 AM (in response to iustinianos)

    I would be thrilled with start up speeds like yours.  It took me 5 min. to start up in safe mode this morning.  Disk Utility will not even work so I cannot check permisions or my disc itself.  For all useful purposes, ML has bricked my MacBook Pro.  After 24 years as  Mac user, I hate the thought of migrating to Windows, but with Mac's lack of support for those of us who have moved to the boonies, I'm begining to think that it is the only thing I can do to save my sanity!

  • remd Calculating status...
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    Nov 8, 2012 3:04 AM (in response to iustinianos)

    I went back to using Linux as my main desktop, since the ML update since my MAC book pro i7, 8gb (even tried 16gb ram), 750gb hd, has become useless most of the time.


    The overal speed is a little slower than it was under SL, I could live with that, but the main issue is the sleep function, it will make the computer freeze and unaccessible when it goes to sleep, I'd say about 70% of the time.


    I tried to make the hard drive go sleep later, I tried to prevent to copy content from ram to hd and back (perm 0), but that didnt change much...

    I also have to use caffeinate to prevent the wifi to cut when sleeping, which would stop all downloads..


    Glad to hear if anyone has other ideas to improve this, otherwise I hope Apple will improve this soon, until then I'll use my Linux computer and only use the MAC for when its really needed (eg iTunes..)

  • rgbnite Calculating status...
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    Dec 6, 2012 7:48 AM (in response to iustinianos)

    Same here-Mountain Lion is Slow?!!  Just down loaded to iMac 7i (took about 34minutes). Booting and shut down takes about 3 times longer from Leopard. Is there an update fix?

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