My wife’s Mac Mini (1.4 Ghz PPC, 10.4.11, 1GB RAM) is showing its age. We’re not ready to spring for a new Mac because we have plenty of more pressing financial demands. But moreover, as a software engineer, I am annoyed and dismayed by the state of software. Bad software is bad software; continually throwing more hardware at the problem does not fix it. Therefore I’m curious to find out why this Mac is getting so painfully slow over time, and hopefully fix it.
2014 update: My wife did upgrade her Mac, so now I have a few more degrees of freedom to beat this machine back into shape.
The first step is to extra daemons aren’t running. Open
Preferences > Sharing. For my purposes, only
TODO is desired.
Disable everything else.
About This Mac / More Info… / System Profiler
Applications / Utilities / Activity Monitor
Sort by highest memory usage:
top -o size
Sort by most CPU time consumed (this is most meaningful if you boot your Mac and use it normally for a while first):
top -o time
Sort by the highest number of threads:
top -o th
This Mac has no wireless card installed. So why is it running an AirPort app?
marble:Library laura$ ps auxw | grep -i air laura 412 0.0 0.3 143492 2876 ?? S 8:05PM 0:00.12 /System/Library/CoreServices/AirPort Base Station Agent.app/Contents/MacOS/AirPort Base Station Agent -launchd -allowquit
This agent apparently sits in the background and checks for Airport updates on a weekly basis. Useless! Here is how to disable AirPort Base Station Agent.
killall mds rm -rf /Library/Spotlight
I generally like the Cannon LIDE series of scanners. They’re compact, USB powered, and work well. But the software is horrible. The
mv /Library/CFMSupport/CNQL2410_ButtonManager.app ~/CNQL2410_ButtonManager.app.disabled
After I moved this and restarted, it still was running, and was the top CPU user!
marble:~ laura$ top -o time marble:~ laura$ ps auxw | grep CNQ laura 137 0.3 0.0 66152 192 s000 R+ 8:10PM 0:00.00 grep CNQ laura 106 0.2 0.2 110740 2336 ?? S 8:09PM 0:03.87 /Users/laura/CNQL2410_ButtonManager.app.disabled/Contents/MacOS/CNQL2410_ButtonManager -psn_0_53261 marble:~ laura$ jobs marble:~ laura$ rm -rf ~/CNQL2410_ButtonManager.app.disabled/ marble:~ laura$
fseventsd monitors filesystem events, and serves them up to interested applications. I believe that Spotlight was the original reason this was created.
Started the latest available Safari, Camino, and TenFourFox. Browsed each to slashdot.org, archaeology.org, and gnu.org. Safari was clearly the slowest, by far. Camino would occasionally beach-ball. TenFourFox was refreshingly quick.
PID COMMAND %CPU TIME #TH #PRTS #MREGS RPRVT RSHRD RSIZE VSIZE 246 Safari 0.0% 1:18.90 12 223+ 1391 38M+ 41M+ 66M+ 234M+ 241 firefox 0.0% 0:36.18 24 174+ 1535 97M+ 67M+ 133M+ 1307M+ 242 Camino 0.0% 0:30.09 12 143+ 541 31M+ 44M+ 70M+ 199M+
kextstat kextunload rm /System/Library/Extentions/xxx