Hello and thank you for asking your question, with JustAnswer.com/Mac. I am Sr. Mac Tech Support Specialist, Terry, glad to assist you.
I have several options for you to assist you here
first of all, are you experiencing the slow issues just when searching online through the web or eve when accessing applications on your Mac?
I think both. I just clicked on an app to test and it took longer than I think it should for the app to open
Good to know. So what I recommend first, is you use Disk Utility, the built in Mac OS X volume and hard drive repair software
Disk Utility almost works like Windows Disk Defragmenter, with respect that it will repair damaged folders and file permissions
which can affect the normal function of applications
on your Mac
There are two ways to use Disk Utility
one is right from within your Mac OS X environment which can be accessed by opening a new Finder window,
clicking on the Applications folder in the left sidebar of Finder
then within Applications folder, locate and open the folder entitled Utilities
within the Utilities folder you will see Disk Utility amongst the other built-in software utilities listed in that folder
That is the actual icon you will be looking for within Utilities for Disk Utility
When you double click that icon Doug, you should see this window appear:
Sorry I forgot to add this view first, which shows you the Utilities folder. Here is what Disk Utility window will look like:
I use list view, so you don't have to include pix, thanks.
that is the window you will need to get familiar with
no worries- and thanks for the heads up
Now before I go on with this way to access Disk Utility-
BTW, I've seen that and it is greek to me
That is ok sir, you are in good hands here :)
I am also a Mac Tutor by trade, so I have patience as you seek understanding
I will be as concise as I can for you
so the other process for accessing Disk Utility, is to use your Mac OS X installation disk
in this case with you currently running Mac OS X 10.5.8 Leopard on your iMac
the installation disk must be the same version series (10.5 Leopard) in order to reach Disk Utility with the install disc
simply put Doug, both ways to access Disk Utility to improve the performance of your Mac OS X volume (the environment you have a user account set up) and the hard drive
with one exception
Let's go ahead and assume I cannot lay hands on that disc right now .....
If you need to perform a Repair Disk which is the entire hard drive, that needs to be repaired and not just the Mac OS X volume, you can only do that by using the installation disk
because the installation disk will serve as a temporary drive to use Disk Utility to repair your hard drive
currently with the slow performance you are experiencing should be corrected from using the Disk Utility from within your Mac OS X environment
What you mainly want to do (and you can try now) is use the Disk Utility you do have access to now and open it
and then follow these steps:
• From within the Disk Utility window, click on the Macintosh HD volume (or on the name you have changed this volume to.) located in the left side view of the open application• Select "Repair Disk Permissions" button*Let Disk Utility run this repair permissions until completionOnce Disk Utility is complete and there are no errors in red in the completion summary (if there are errors listed in red, re-run DU to see if those error will clear- if they don't reply back to this post right away and let me know what the exact error message is), quit Disk Utility
then test your web browser and surf the web or open an application or two and test to see if the speed has improved
Now there is another way to help speed up the performance on your iMac
and that would be to use Disk Utility to Free Space
To access that function Doug, is very simple to do and poses no risk to your Mac OS X volume or your hard drive
what the Erase free space function does, is to free up unused, or previously used space that has now just sitting dormant,
and clearing that space out on the hard drive, which will not only allow your Mac OS X environment operate better,
it will also improve your hard drive's performance and help you re-capture some precious space
To access the Erase Free Space button
all you need to do from within Disk Utility, is to click on the Erase tab located on the right side view in the Disk Utility window
and you will see the Erase Free Space button
Here you can select the Zero Out Data
format, which will allow you to be able to erase that free space and reap the benefits I mentioned above
it does take some time to do however, depending on the size of your hard drive, but works well all the same
Do I still have you with me so far?
let me know if you have any questions about the content I have provided to you here.
I just want to make sure you have the best alternatives available to keep your iMac, optimized and running well
I have several notes beginning with "permissions differ" and others beginning "group differs" in the notes section, but Repair Permissions has finished and there are no red notations. What should I do now?
I usually run Disk Utility twice or more
just to make sure it does a thorough job cleaning up and repairing damaged files
OK, will do
Now typically, after you perform this process Doug, you don't have to reboot as you would with PCs, but every now and then, even with a Mac is at times helpful post Disk Utility
Alright, I will. Shall I run the 'Erase Free Space' before rebooting?
Do that only after you return and make sure your system has improved in its normal functionality
only because that process takes a lot of time
Got it. I'll do all that in a few. Just now, I must go elsewhere. I'll check in with results in a couple hrs. OK?
over 60 minutes or longer
just make sure you bookmark this page
in your current web browser, so you can return back to this session,
Ok Doug,all the best!
Keep me posted