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Mike, Mac Support Specialist
Category: Mac
Satisfied Customers: 2186
Experience:  Apple trained Technician, A+ Certified, 20+ years of Mac support, repairs, training, and consulting
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My imac is running slower and slower. It is about 2-3 years

Customer Question

My imac is running slower and slower. It is about 2-3 years old. I think it has plenty of memory but it just takes a lot of time to do simple processes? How can I analyze this and find out what is causing the delays and fix it so it flies like it used to?
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Mac
Expert:  Mike replied 7 years ago.

There are a few things that can go wrong and make a Mac run slower. We just need to narrow down where you are seeing the slow down and concentrate on that.

So, what is it that makes you think the Mac is slower now? Where do you see this slowness? Internet only? Opening Windows? Starting up?

Let me know as much as you can about what it is that is slow and I can help clean it up.

Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Opening a closed program can be painfully slow at times. Also, going to a new website can take a while. I am getting accustomed to the little rainbow pinwheel showing that the system is working. Other times, just typing lags behind from the time I hit the keyboard to when the digit is represented on the screen. Even maximizing a program window that has been minimized seems to drag on. Lastly, I've noticed that graphics in a document take a while to be visible when opened and even scrolling can be delayed.

Hope this helps. I'll keep my eye out for other times.
Expert:  Mike replied 7 years ago.

The first thing I want to do, and this may take a day or two to compile, is have you open the Activity Monitor and set it to show CPU activity. This will allow you to note down any processes that are taking up the CPU and making other tasks lag behind.

Do this:
Go to your Applications folder and open the Utilities Folder.
Look for the program called Activity Monitor and open that.
In the window that opens, makes ure it is set to CPU at the bottom, and the column CPU is the sort by choice (click on it so larger usage floats tot he top and 0's are at the bottom).

Look at the highest CPU usage application and note what it is called. Some have strange names, but don't worry, I'll decipher them for you.

Once we see a pattern or one or more apps taking up CPU power, then we can start to speed up your machine.

Sound good? Let me know if this is cool and then get started.

Each time you see the Mac getting slow, go to Activity Monitor and note the top 2 or 3 apps in that list. You can safely leave Activity Monitor open all the time in the background and simply switch to it when you want to look.

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Customer: replied 7 years ago.
I've done as you suggested and will monitor and reply in a couple of days. Thanks. Bryan
Expert:  Mike replied 7 years ago.
No problem.