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Question: Boot drive on 2017 iMac very slow

Hi all,

i noticed that my iMac felt quite slow (27 inch screen 2017 model with a 1TB hard drive), so I connected an SSD via USB3 and did a fresh installation of High Sierra on it. This didn’t speed anything up, and running a disk speed benchmark tool showed that the SSD was giving a throughput of abut 30meg/second, compared to about 150 for the internal hard drive. So I did a clean install of High Sierra to the internal drive, ran the same benchmark which showed the internal hard drive running at about 30 meg/second, and the external drive running significantly quicker.


The he tests are run after the install has finished and the machine has had a couple of days to finish syncing the iCloud Drive, photos etc. Nothing significant is running in the background, and nothing shows up on the task manager as causing significant throughout on the drives.


Any my suggestions please?

iMac, iOS 11.1

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Nov 16, 2017 1:44 PM in response to SimonFin In response to SimonFin

Please post an EtreCheckreport of your system. We can then look for obvious issues. Please click the link, download the app and run the report. Once you have the report, please copy and paste it as your reply to this post.

Nov 16, 2017 1:44 PM

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Nov 16, 2017 3:32 PM in response to rkaufmann87 In response to rkaufmann87

EtreCheck version: 3.4.6 (460)

Report generated 2017-11-16 23:28:57

Download EtreCheck from https://etrecheck.com

Runtime: 4:38

Performance: Good


Click the [Lookup] links for more information from Apple Support Communities.

Click the [Details] links for more information about that line.


Problem: Computer is too slow

Description:

The boot drive is always slow - whether this be the internal hard drive or an external SSD or SSHD, the boot drive hits about 30 meg/second, other drives can hit well over 150.


Hardware Information:

iMac (Retina 5K, 27-inch, Late 2015)

[Technical Specifications] - [User Guide] - [Warranty & Service]

iMac - model: iMac17,1

1 3.2 GHz Intel Core i5 (i5-6500) CPU: 4-core

16 GB RAM Upgradeable - [Instructions]

BANK 0/DIMM0

4 GB DDR3 1867 MHz ok

BANK 0/DIMM1

4 GB DDR3 1867 MHz ok

BANK 1/DIMM0

4 GB DDR3 1867 MHz ok

BANK 1/DIMM1

4 GB DDR3 1867 MHz ok

Handoff/Airdrop2: supported

Wireless: en1: 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac

iCloud Quota: 1.39 TB available


Video Information:

AMD Radeon R9 M380 - VRAM: 2 GB

iMac 5120 x 2880


Disk Information:

APPLE HDD ST1000DM003 disk0: (1 TB) (Rotational)

[Show SMART report]

EFI (disk0s1 - MS-DOS FAT32) <not mounted> [EFI]: 210 MB

(disk0s2) <not mounted> [APFS Container]: 1000.00 GB


USB Information:

USB30Bus

ASMedia AS2115

2115 disk3: (2 TB)

EFI (disk3s1 - MS-DOS FAT32) <not mounted> [EFI]: 210 MB

2TB_SSHD_BOOT (disk3s2 - Journaled HFS+) /Volumes/2TB_SSHD_BOOT : 2.00 TB (133.67 GB free)

Recovery HD (disk3s3 - Journaled HFS+) <not mounted> [Recovery]: 650 MB

Generic 4-Port USB 3.0 Hub

Generic 4-Port USB 3.0 Hub

GenesysLogic USB3.0 Hub

SanDisk Sandisk Ultra

Sandisk Ultra disk2: (63.28 GB)

Install macOS High Sierra (disk2s1 - Journaled HFS+) /Volumes/Install macOS High Sierra : 34.36 GB (28.63 GB free)

GenesysLogic USB2.0 Hub

Broadcom Corp. Bluetooth USB Host Controller

Apple Inc. FaceTime HD Camera (Built-in)

Generic 4-Port USB 2.0 Hub

Apple Inc. Magic Trackpad 2

Generic 4-Port USB 2.0 Hub

Etron Technology, Inc. USB2.0 Camera


Thunderbolt Information:

Apple Inc. thunderbolt_bus


Virtual disks:

Macintosh HD (disk1s1 - APFS) / [Startup]: 1000.00 GB (547.57 GB free)

Physical disk: disk0s2 1000.00 GB (547.57 GB free)

(disk1s2) <not mounted> [Preboot]: 1000.00 GB

Physical disk: disk0s2 1000.00 GB

(disk1s3) <not mounted> [Recovery]: 1000.00 GB

Physical disk: disk0s2 1000.00 GB

(disk1s4) /private/var/vm [VM]: 1000.00 GB

Physical disk: disk0s2 1000.00 GB

TeamViewer (disk4s1 - HFS+) /Volumes/TeamViewer : 157 MB (110 MB free)

Physical disk: Disk Image 157 MB (110 MB free)


System Software:

macOS High Sierra 10.13.1 (17B48) - Time since boot: about 5 days


Gatekeeper:

Mac App Store and identified developers


Kernel Extensions:

/Library/Application Support/IPVanish-OpenVPNHelper/bin

[not loaded] foo.tap (20111101) [Lookup]

[not loaded] foo.tun (20111101) [Lookup]


System Launch Agents:

[not loaded] 5 Apple tasks

[loaded] 173 Apple tasks

[running] 110 Apple tasks


System Launch Daemons:

[not loaded] 40 Apple tasks

[loaded] 162 Apple tasks

[running] 127 Apple tasks


Launch Agents:

[running] com.teamviewer.teamviewer.plist (TeamViewer GmbH - installed 2017-11-11) [Lookup]

[running] com.teamviewer.teamviewer_desktop.plist (TeamViewer GmbH - installed 2017-11-11) [Lookup]


Launch Daemons:

[loaded] com.ipvanish.IPVanish.VPNHelper.plist (Mudhook Marketing, Inc. - installed 2017-11-12) [Lookup]

[loaded] com.ipvanish.helper.openvpn.plist (Mudhook Marketing, Inc. - installed 2017-11-12) [Lookup]

[loaded] com.ipvanish.helper.pppd.plist (Mudhook Marketing, Inc. - installed 2017-11-12) [Lookup]

[running] com.ipvanish.osx.vpnhelper.plist (Mudhook Marketing, Inc. - installed 2017-11-12) [Lookup]

[loaded] com.teamviewer.Helper.plist (TeamViewer GmbH - installed 2017-08-24) [Lookup]

[running] com.teamviewer.teamviewer_service.plist (TeamViewer GmbH - installed 2017-11-11) [Lookup]


User Login Items:

iTunesHelper Application - Hidden (Apple, Inc. - installed 2017-11-11)

(/Applications/iTunes.app/Contents/MacOS/iTunesHelper.app)

Plex Media Server Application

(/Applications/Plex Media Server.app)

HD_Videos Volume - Hidden

(/Volumes/HD_Videos)

MAIN Volume - Hidden

(/Volumes/MAIN)


Internet Plug-ins:

QuickTime Plugin: 7.7.3 (installed 2017-10-25)


3rd Party Preference Panes:

None


Time Machine:

Time Machine not configured!


Top Processes by CPU:

22% TeamViewer_Desktop

16% kernel_task

11% WindowServer

2% cloudd

1% fontd


Top Processes by Memory:

1.47 GB kernel_task

1.14 GB Photos

353 MB TeamViewer_Desktop

270 MB Plex Media Server

253 MB Finder


Top Processes by Network Use:

Input Output Process name

79.20 GB 2.80 GB kernel_task

7.47 GB 30.81 GB Transmission

17 KB 129 MB nsurlsessiond

17 MB 385 KB mDNSResponder

570 KB 7 MB TeamViewer_Service


Top Processes by Energy Use:

19.02 TeamViewer_Desktop

13.68 WindowServer

2.72 cloudd

0.92 nsurlsessiond


Virtual Memory Information:

6.26 GB Available RAM

258 MB Free RAM

9.74 GB Used RAM

6.00 GB Cached files

108 MB Swap Used


Software installs (last 30 days):

TeamViewer: 12.0.82953 (installed 2017-11-11)

Disk Speed Test: 3.1 (installed 2017-11-12)


Install information may not be complete.




Nov 16, 2017 3:32 PM

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Nov 16, 2017 3:36 PM in response to SimonFin In response to SimonFin

A rotational hard drive should NOT be formatted using APFS. That's probably the entire problem right there.


You need to wipe it and reformat it as MacOS Extended (Journaled).

I'm assuming you forcibly converted / formatted it to APFS as High Sierra will not automatically attempt to do so. Right now, only supported SSD boot devices should be formatted APFS.

Nov 16, 2017 3:36 PM

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Nov 16, 2017 3:39 PM in response to SimonFin In response to SimonFin

Your report indicates the computer is running fine. However I see you bought an entry level 21.5" iMac with a 5400 RPM HD. These drives are very slow and cannot be sped up. About the only thing you can do to improve performance is to buy an SSD, install it in either USB 3 or Thunderbolt (preferred!!) and use that as your boot drive. If you decide to take that route then I'd recommend contacting OWC (www.macsales.com) who can supply the right SSD and enclosure for you.

The next mac you get should be purchased with either a Fusion drive or preferably a SSD if you are seeking improved performance.

Nov 16, 2017 3:39 PM

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Nov 17, 2017 12:47 AM in response to KiltedTim In response to KiltedTim

Hi,

the drive was formatted to APFS to see if that helped - the same behaviour was present before with the drive formatted as suggested (and the same applies to the external SSD and SSHD that also perform very slowly when assigned as the boot drive).

Nov 17, 2017 12:47 AM

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Nov 17, 2017 12:52 AM in response to rkaufmann87 In response to rkaufmann87

iMac (Retina 5K, 27-inch, Late 2015)

Also Ive tried using an external SSD and SSHD, and the issue is that whatever is the boot drive slows down, giving about 30 meg/sec on Blackmagicdesign disk speed test. The internal HD shows 30 when assigned as the boot drive, but 150 when booting for an external SSD. The external SSD shows 30 meg when booted from, but significantly more when I‘we booted from the internal drive.

I know now a rotational drive isn’t very quick, but it is currently much slower than is reasonable or expected.

Nov 17, 2017 12:52 AM

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Question: Boot drive on 2017 iMac very slow