45 Awesome Utilities for Tinkering With Your Mac. This post is part of a series that revisits some of our readers’ favorite articles from the past that still contain awesome and relevant information that you might find useful.
This post was originally published on May 17th, 2011. The “utility” software niche is one that is extremely active in the Mac application community. There is an abundance of fantastic utilities currently available, and that list is ever changing. We love this type of software at AppStorm, regularly reviewing different apps that let you tweak and tune your computer. With the area changing so fast, we decided to take a look at some of the best and most useful Mac OS X utilities that are available right now. Best repair and maintenance apps for Mac: The tools you need to fix OS X. You have a Mac, or maybe you're responsible for taking care of them at your business.
You need an toolkit of apps that help you get out of trouble when your Mac's not working right. Maybe a hard drive needs rebuilding or recovery, the memory needs testing, you're desperate to un-delete files, you need to access to deeper system maintenance, or you simply want to better clean out the debris from old apps, there are several tools you can go to. These are my pick for the best Mac apps, and most indispensable tools, you can have. DiskWarrior 4 When it comes to rebuilding and recovering a hard drive that's not working right, Alsoft's DiskWarrior is peerless in the Mac realm. DiskWarrior excels at rebuilding the directory structure of your Mac's hard drive, and it does so by building a replacement directory instead of trying to patch the existing one. . $99.95 - Download now Techtool Pro 7 Micromat's Techtool Pro 7 isn't just about recovering files off your hard drive, though it can do that. OnyX. Maintaining Mac OS X.
Much dubious advice is available concerning "routine maintenance" of Mac® OS X.
This FAQ, based on the "Maintaining Mac OS X" chapter of our book, Troubleshooting Mac OS X, is intended to provide guidance on recommended maintenance and to dispel some common maintenance myths. Recommended maintenance The only routine maintenance steps we recommend are the following: Maintenance myths Most of the activities portrayed as maintenance by tools like Cocktail, Onyx, Yasu, and others are, in fact, troubleshooting steps. Accordingly, cache cleaning, repairing permissions, prebinding, and other tasks not listed in the "Recommended Maintenance" section above are not regular maintenance tasks. In some cases, such as System cache cleaning, they can have unintended consequences. We will now dispel some common maintenance myths. Cache cleaning System and User cache cleaning are troubleshooting steps, not part of regular maintenance.
The X Lab: The X-FAQs. Problems from insufficient RAM and free hard disk space. If you have a limited amount of either RAM (memory) or available — free or unused — space on your Mac® OS X startup disk, you may encounter problems including kernel panics, the inability to burn CDs or DVDs, or the apparent loss of application preferences.
This FAQ, which is derived from a chapter from our book Troubleshooting Mac OS X, describes the basis of these problems and solutions for such. Memory management in Mac OS X Applications and processing on your Mac require physical RAM to work. The more applications you launch or the larger the files those applications work upon, the more physical RAM is consumed. To efficiently use your available RAM, Mac OS X employs a strategy common to all modern operation systems known as Virtual Memory (VM). Paging is a key activity of VM. To free RAM for other applications and processing, data is copied from RAM to a swap file. Swap files are created and released dynamically and are saved in the /private/var/vm directory.
Slow performance. Tuning Mac OS X Performance. This FAQ provides recommendations for optimizing Mac® OS X performance.
Additionally, it provides advice and links to advice for troubleshooting certain Mac OS X performance problems. Comprehensive advice on this topic can be found in the "Performance" chapter of our book Troubleshooting Mac OS X. Optimize Mac OS X 10.10 Yosemite Faster on Virtualbox (All Version)
Troubleshooting with Activity Monitor. Activity Monitor, located in the Macintosh HD > Applications > Utilities folder, is particularly suited to troubleshooting performance problems, such as the Spinning Beach Ball of Death (SBBOD) and general system sluggishness.
For example, Activity Monitor can be used to determine if your Mac has sufficient resources — CPU, RAM, and free space on your startup disk — for your daily workload. If your Mac regularly performs poorly or your work is frequently interrupted by the SBBOD, your computer may be lacking in one or more of these necessary resources. This is especially true if your work primarily involves notoriously resource-intensive applications, such as multimedia editing, financial modeling, or scientific computing. To learn all that Activity Monitor can do, read its Help: in Activity Monitor, choose Help > Activity Monitor Help.
This FAQ discusses using Activity Monitor to troubleshoot performance problems. Activity Monitor basics Checking CPU usage Checking RAM usage.