4 Replies Latest reply: Mar 7, 2010 11:33 PM by ozicon
Astigmatism Level 1 (0 points)
I have a 1st generation Intel iMac (24", late 2006), which ran fine for three years but all of a sudden slowed to a crawl about a month ago. I upgraded to 3GB of RAM, but didn't see any improvement; I've run the disk utility app on the system install disk and didn't get any problems; I don't see anything in the Activity Monitor that's hogging CPU usage (although iTunes uses about 7% while playing music and 20% while playing video - considerably higher when it loads a new track into RAM); and I have 70GB free on a 300GB hard disk. I realize that this is just scratching the surface, so what else should I be looking at? For what it's worth, yes I have an HP printer, but the drivers don't seem to take up that much CPU time; and I'm still on 10.4.11, so maybe it's just time to upgrade to Snow Leopard; but either way I've been on this system (and with this printer) for a long time, and I don't understand why this would happen all of a sudden...


Message was edited by: Astigmatism

iMac (Polycarbonate / Intel Core 2 Duo), Mac OS X (10.4.11)
  • Carolyn Samit Level 10 (103,360 points)

    70GB free disk space could be at least part of the problem for the disk slowing down.

    Try Freeing space on your Mac OS X startup disk

    Check the startup disk for errors that may need repairing.

    Insert your install disk and Restart, holding down the "C" key until grey Apple appears.
    Go to Installer menu and launch Disk Utility.
    Select your HDD (manufacturer ID) in the left panel.
    Select First Aid in the Main panel.
    *(Check S.M.A.R.T Status of HDD at the bottom of right panel. It should say: Verified)*
    Click Repair Disk on the bottom right.
    If DU reports disk does not need repairs quit DU and restart.
    If DU reports errors Repair again and again until DU reports disk is repaired.
    When you are finished with DU, from the Menu Bar, select Utilities/Startup Manager.
    Select your start up disk and click Restart

    While you have the Disk Utility window open, look at the bottom of the window. Where you see Capacity and Available. *Make sure there is always 10% to 15% free disk space*

    If you cannot boot from your install disc, try booting in Safe Mode

    How to Force Background Maintenance

    One way to free up disk space...

    Open Console. Select system.log then from the Menu Bar click Reveal in Finder then move that log file to the Trash. These logs can take up as much as a GB.

  • Astigmatism Level 1 (0 points)
    Thanks Carolyn, but as I mentioned, I've already run Disk Utility with no reported problems, and I have nearly 25% of my disk free. Is there a next step? I know that the standard line is that you don't have to defragment OS X disks, but should I try that? Similarly, I'd be surprised if there were a Mac virus out there and I hadn't heard anything about it, but is there any chance my computer's been taken over by a botnet (and how would I find out)? Or at this stage should I just give up and reinstall my system from scratch?
  • Mac Medic (be@MacOSG.com) Level 6 (17,290 points)
    Login as another User. Does it run any faster there for you?

    Dave M.
    MacOSG Founder/Ambassador  An Apple User Group  iTunes: MacOSG

  • ozicon Level 1 (20 points)
    Try what Mac Medic suggested, if that doesn't improve speed then you may have a problem with your hard drive...work backwards on this problem, imagine the worst case scenario first, a failing hard drive, prove that it's ok or not ok by getting an expert to test it, it will be worth it if you have data valuable to you

    If you have a login pass word, get rid of it now by going into preferences-security-change password, login and leave the rest blank (others could verify if this flow is correct), if your hard drive snuffs it completely you may not be able to do much with a password still in place

    If there's any way at all that you can find out if your hard drive is a "Western Digital" HD, do it, then if it is tread carefully, best to shut the computer down and get it tested by professionals if you want save your data and files, it not too late to do that