10 tips to speed up OS X Mavericks

“OS X Mavericks is a lean, mean, Mac-running machine, and while it’s been optimized to work as well as possible with a variety of Macs, sometimes things get slow and need a little TLC to get back to full performance,” Brian Meyer reports for Apple Gazette.

“Whether you recently updated to Mavericks, bought a new Mac with Mavericks pre-installed, or did a completely fresh install of Mavericks, the tips below will help you get your Mac running as fast as possible and do away with any issues that might be getting your Mac down,” Meyer reports. “Check out these 10 tips to speed up OS X Mavericks…”

Read more in the full article here.


  1. None of those tips speed up Mavericks. Not if you’re on corporate network. Considerable slower on same hardware (MacPro 3,1). Worst. Update. Ever. Productivity gone. If this is the price of free software… No, thanks. I think a lot of people would pay happily for a usable operating system.

    1. Or, you might try buying a workstation that’s not 6 years old. I’m surprised it runs Mavericks at all. Alternatively, try maxing out the memory. Mavericks does use a bit more memory, and if your memory is limited that can slow things down. It worked for me, and memory for machines that old is getting cheap now.

    2. I run Mavericks on my Mac Pro 3,1. I bought the machine in 2008 with one CPU, 2GB of RAM, a small 5200 rpm disk, no Bluetooth, with Radeon HD 2600 graphic card. The cheapest configuration that I could afford.

      It now had 2 CPU (8 core), 24GB of RAM, Radeon 5870, Bluetooth, USB 3.0 and eSATA, 256GB SSD as boot drive, 2 7200 rpm disks in RAID 0 as data, plus another one for time machine.

      It can do anything that I throw at it, and sits comfortably next to my late 2013 15″ rMBP, and I expect to keep using it. Not bad for a 6 year old machine.

  2. None of those tips speed up Mavericks. Not if you’re on a corporate network. Considerable slower on same hardware (MacPro 3,1). Worst. Update. Ever. Productivity gone. If this is the price of free software… No, thanks! I think a lot of people would pay happily for a usable operating system.

    1. Re: OnMacs_for_20_yrs, MacGuy & a dozen other “names”…

      Dude, if you are going to troll under multiple names you, at least, have to make them different.
      (Though it’s not like it hasn’t been obvious to most of us that that it was pretty likely that ( like; dead certain?) one guy was responsible for half (or more) of the anti-apple anti-OS7 anti-Mavircks and anti Tim Cook posts made here)

  3. What a worthless article. This took literally no effort to write. It’s the same blindingly obvious “tips” they throw out every time. There is not one thing in there that’s Mavericks specific.

    One of the items is “Repair Permissions”. Seriously? I haven’t done that in years. It’s almost never necessary. It’s the “zap the PRAM and rebuild the desktop” of OSX, a near-worthless procedure sold as a cure-all. OSX isn’t written so poorly that you need to perform a manual fix to the file software on a regular schedule.


    1. Somewhat to my surprise, I agree with all 10 of the tips (yes, including permissions repair).

      I do a lot of software support. The number one remedy for flaky behaviors that can’t be reproduced and for computers that have slowed to a crawl is a restart. The other tips are plain common sense; there are times I wish common sense were more common.

      1. Mavericks did, indeed, slow down my 2008 unibody Macbook. By checking it out with activity monitor I could see that I was constantly maxed out on memory (2 GB). I ordered 8 GB of memory and installed it in a few seconds. I am now seeing snappiness that I have never before seen on this laptop. So yes, anything that frees up or conserves memory (or expands it) may speed things up.

      2. Yeah, but all that’s been true since OS X 10.0, hasn’t it? Hell, much of it is true for other operating systems too! What makes these “Mavericks” tips? It’s just the same generic advice regurgitated with a new title. CTRL-C CTRL-V journalism.


  4. Keep trying. Eventually it will work. I had to click on it three times before it finally loaded. I think it’s just getting slammed because of the publicity garnered at MDN.

        1. Little Snitch is only good if you actually understand what it is telling you is dialing out, and if you can recognize it as something you should stop or not. Most people don’t.

  5. The article is pretty much snake oil. Worthless. For example–“Delete unused apps” doesn’t affect the speed of the computer at all. He also says the over time your RAM gets “clogged”. Crazy talk.

  6. Interesting comments.

    Bought my first Mac Jan 1984. Over 100 since. A new OS available, never hesitated to update immediately. Now running 4 Macs. Fortunately only one is not upgradable to Mavericks.

    I design/build/support data base management software. On my MacBook Pro Retina 13, I am in the process of upgrading to 500 GB to accommodate a 150 (and growing) GB data file.

    Having supported hundreds of Macs over the years, I can’t find anything wrong with the suggestion in this article.

    As BillD stated, “… tips are plain common sense; there are times I wish common sense were more common.” And if they were, as those with common sense well understand, those tips don’t only apply to Mavericks.

  7. I would have to say that the naysayers on this thread regarding the article didn’t really take the time to read the article but just whizzed down the 1-10 and said: “Oh, what a bunch of BS.”

    Case in point: Delete unused apps. In the copy below, the author mentioned why that might not be a bad idea.

    Wanna know? Go read the article. Quit waiting for someone else to do your homework. 😉


  8. 4. Check Activity Monitor – I routinely do this and find that Safari is choking up the system. I can usually fix the problem by closing the MDN window. Processor load goes down immediately without all those crappy, poorly implemented ads.

  9. Yeah I like Mavericks, I slapped 16gb crucial ram into my <BP 2011 and a 960 Crucial SSD now my laptop boots to full desktop in around 12-14 seconds and the heat and dropped as well.

  10. If using Terminal terrifies you there is another way to rebuild index of a drive. Go to System Preferences >Spotlight >Privacy. Click the plus sign to add the drive on which you want to rebuild the index. Then select it and click the minus sign to delete it. Select Spotlight in the Menu Bar and it should be indexing.

  11. Sorry guys for double posting. I wasn’t sure if it gets through. This was my first comment(s) 🙂 here. You can call me anything, but I keep my opinion on it. I am supporting/using Macs for 20+ years. My first desktop was an SE/30 at work. I have never used Windows before or after. I do have strong faith in Apple and its products. But Mavericks’ performance simply frustrates me, that’s all. That MacPro is an 8-core 2.8 GHz machine w/ 8Gigs of RAM and a Vertex III SSD as a boot drive – not too shabby, I think. And the system hangs, and lags on tasks such as navigating the file system, hitting space for Quick Look, QuickTime doesn’t play .movs, created couple of months ago, only after some weird conversion process, and so on. Call me a troll, but it’s not a smooth upgrade, anyway. I can’t see any reason, why Quick Look is slow, for example, and I doubt that doubling the RAM help it accelerate. Mavericks could be great for laptop users doing lightweight jobs. It does boosting battery time, etc. But those 10 tips have nothing to solve the problems I facing every day. Thanks for reading.

    1. Suggestion: Then don’t change your name with each post and register one of them like the rest of us legitimate posters and you won’t be mistaken for a Troll.

    1. TIP!!!

      Read the article carefully.

      The last line states, “While disabling animations is a last resort, you MAY see some speed increase by doing this.”

      And if one has a machine that is not of YOUR caliber, there is nothing to say that any or all of these tips are not of value to someone.

      It must be nice that your mother never had to remind you to take out the garbage. Or why!

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