Since we are almost a month into spring, it may be the time to think about cleaning our constant work and free time companions, our Macbooks. In this article, we’ve pulled together a few tell-tale signs your Mac needs spring cleaning as well as easy tricks you can use to make your device as good as new.
The “Disk is almost full” message.
Getting a message like this can be frustrating. It means that storage on your device has gone beyond the healthy 20% of free space limit, and you should act upon it as soon as possible. Here’s what you can do to regain more space in your Mac.
Apple makes it easy to increase disk space using your Mac’s internal tools. You can access the storage-saving options by going About this Mac – Storage – Manage. Now that you know where to find them let’s see how you can use them for a spring clean-up.
Optimize Storage. It’s a convenient way to get rid of your hefty files eating up a significant chunk of disk space, such as watched videos and old email attachments.
Store in iCloud. This one is exactly what it says on the tin, letting you move some of your files to iCloud.
Empty Bin automatically. Turning this feature on, you let your Mac erase the Bin items that’s been stored there for more than 30 days.
Finally, Reduce Clutter. This option helps you sort through your files and remove the ones you no longer need.
Speaking of cluttered space, let’s move forward to the next sign prodding you to clean your Mac.
A cluttered desktop
It’s a good idea to tidy up your desktop from time to time, given that many of us use it as a folder for our files. Doing so, you may end up with a messy desktop where it’s impossible to find what you need. On top of a cluttered appearance, a crowded desktop may slow down your Mac’s startup time. Thus, you should sift through these files and weed out those you don’t need. For this purpose, you can use the desktop folder that you can find in Finder’s sidebar.
Here you can review what you have on your Desktop and sort the files by various parameters. Then, you can sort your desktop files into different folders and delete your unneeded files. Alternatively, you can use the Reduce Clutter option we’ve mentioned above. It’ll show your old files, including your desktop files, so you can go ahead and purge them.
A long startup time
Does your Mac take more than 30 seconds to start up? It means that it has to deal with too many items that launch together with your device. Given that all of them launch automatically, chances are you’ve never noticed that they were active and drained your system. With this in mind, take a look at your Dock from time to time – you’ll see the currently running apps marked by a dot below their icons. To find out which of your apps open when you start your Mac, go to System Preferences – Users & Groups and switch to the Login Items tab. Click on the minus sign to ban the ones you don’t need to use after your Mac starts.
Your Mac is slower than usual
This sign can mean several things. Your Mac may be running out of disk space, craving for an update, or is dealing with an abundance of resource-heavy applications. A thorough spring clean-up can help you sort out some of these issues.
The first thing you should do to fix a slow Mac is to see what processes its handling. Chances are high, you’ll uncover apps that you may not even know you had. To dive into this, use Activity Monitor, a built-in tool that gives you insight into your Mac’s behind-the-scenes life. Here you can sort your processes by resource consumption and shut down those you don’t need. You can access Activity Monitor by going Finder – Go – Utilities. Then, open Activity Monitor and dive deeper into it to explore the processes sorted by CPU, Memory, Energy, and other parameters so you can track the programs with the most impact. Then, feel free to quit the unnecessary programs to stop them from draining your Mac’s speed. Good luck with your spring cleaning!