After Apple recently announced a delay to OS X 10.5 Leopard I had to delay my iMac upgrade until the Autumn. This led me to thinking about how to speed up Tiger to get the most out of my ageing G5. This is what I came up with:
1. Repair Disk Permissions Navigate to Applications > Utilities > Disk Utility. Select your Macintosh HD and select Verify Disk Permissions. If needed you can then Repair Disk Permissions.
2. Clear out login items Its good to check that unwanted programs are not starting up when you login to your Mac. This can be done from System Preferences > Accounts > Login Items.
3. Clear out unwanted applications Go through your applications folder and see if you can save yourself some disk space by removing any applications you no longer use.
4. Clear out unused system preferences Check in your system preferences if there are any unused system preferences tabs that can be removed. If you do find something you don't use you can either disable it within its menu or remove it from '~/Library/PreferencePanes'. You may have to reboot or do a force empty trash (see #38).
5. Clear Desktop Its been reported numerous times that having a clear desktop can increase the speed of your Mac. So either put your junk in folders or delete it!
6. Empty Trash (if it wont empty see #38) I'm always amazed when I'm looking on someone's Mac and they haven't ever emptied the trash! Check what's in there then save yourself some space and empty it.
7. Turn off Universal Access (if not used) Navigate to System Preferences > Universal Access and turn off anything you're not using.
8. Turn off Bluetooth (if not used) Navigate to System Preferences > Bluetooth.
9. Turn off speech recognition (if not used) Navigate to System Preferences > Speech Recognition.
10. Turn off internet sharing (if not used) Navigate to System Preferences > Sharing > Internet
11. Check there is plenty of disk space on the boot drive. Your Mac uses some of your hard drive space as virtual memory when there is not enough actual memory available. Its good to always keep 10% of your hard drive free for such activity.
12. Remove Unwanted Language Packs OS X contains hundreds of languages that you most likely wont use. Monolingual is a free program that can root out these languages and remove them saving you some extra disk space.
*Edit: Warning people have experienced problems with Monolingual so becareful what you remove. Only a reinstall will put the languages back so decide weather you really need the extra space by removing them.
13. Remove any desktop changing programs Until recently I had a nice program that would put a different babe on my desktop each month. It looked great but once I started looking in activity monitor it was taking up lots of memory and processor time.
14. Check dock for unwanted apps. Your dock should only contain your most used applications so take a look through to see if there is anything you can remove or uninstall.
15. Choose suitable applications for files Be sensible when choosing what applications open by default - think do you really need Photoshop to open just to view an image when preview will work fine? Right click on a file then select Get Info.
16. Check Software Build If you have an Intel Mac then check the build of the software is universal - it might be that the application is still running through Rosetta and that a universal update is available.
17. Remove dock animation Navigate to System Preferences > Dock then un-tick Animate Opening Applications.
18. Avoid animated desktops Navigate to System Preferences > Desktop & Screen Saver then un-tick Change picture.
19. Remove unused widgets. Each widget takes some memory and processor power even when you're not using the dashboard so only enable the ones you use. Alternatively you can disable the dashboard - see #23.
20. Check to see how much processing power and memory each widget uses. Some widgets are more intensive than others, if there is one that is particularly demanding see if there is one with similar functionality on the Apple website. To do this run Activity Monitor - Applications > Utilities > Activity Monitor.
As you can see the widgets I have running are all using an acceptable amount of Real Memory.
Tinkertool Tinkertool is a utility that gives you access to additional settings within OS X.
21. Remove animation effects. The animation effects are the eye candy that make OS X look nice but they are not really needed, you can turn them off from the Finder pane within Tinkertool.
22. Disable Dock shadow. From the Dock pane un-tick Enable Dock shadow.
23. Disable Dashboard. If you don't use the Dashboard you can deactivate it from the General pane.
24. Skip checksum verifications when opening DMG files. This will speed up the loading of disk images when opening. This can be found in the Applications pane.
25. Remove or deactivate unwanted login items from the Login Items pane. You might already have done this in #2.
26. Reduce delay time for display of loading pages in Safari. This should speed up your web browsing experience, found within the Safari Pane.
OnyX OynX is similar to Tinkertool however has many more options and preferences.You may have already done some of these in previous tips. Parameters
27. Un-tick Graphic Effects (Finder tab). You may already have done this with Tinkertool #21.
28. Un-tick Animate 'Opening applications' and 'When alert in background' (Dock tab).
29. Disable Dashboard (Dashboard and Expose tab). You may already have done this with Tinkertool #23.
30. Set Safari speed of web page display to fast (Safari Tab). You may already have done this in #26. Maintenance
31. Repair Disk Permissions. You may already have done this in #1.
32. Run Maintenance Scripts.
33. Reset Spotlight Index (it may take over a day to rebuild the index afterwards).
34. Run complete system optimization. Cleaning
35. Clear Internet Settings.
36. Clear User and Font Caches.
37. Clear unused logs.
38. Force Empty Trash Automation
39. Check settings - The default settings should be fine here. Click Execute.
You can do some of the following by resetting Safari - click Safari > Reset Safari. *Edit: Resetting Safari does not clear Favicons.
40. Clear Cache. To speed up page loading Safari saves a copy of every page in its cache however if the cache gets too large it can actually slow down page loading so its best to empty it occasionally. To do so click Safari > Empty Cache.
41. Clear History. Safari can remember every single site you have visited which can have a negative effect on its performance. You can empty it be selecting History > Clear History.
42. Clear AutoFill. AutoFill is the data is saved in forms such as your username and password on websites. As with the cache and history the AutoFill can mount up over time. To empty select Safari > Preferences then select the AutoFill tab. From here you can go through the three AutoFill sections and clear out data that you no longer want stored.
43. Clear Favicons. Favicons are the little icons you see to the left of the URL in the address bar. These can be cleared by emptying user folder/Library/Safari/Icons.
44. If you use Firefox then you can get specially optimized versions of the browser based on your processor architecture - either G4, G5 or intel.
45. Extensions Firefox has some great extensions but they can slow down the browser so take a serious look to see weather you really need that extra toolbar!
46. Smart Playlists These can slow down the operation of iTunes as they reload the contents of the list every time the program loads. If you have a a smart play list that does not change very often then you can either deactivate live updating (by clicking file > edit smart play list) or copy of the contents of the smart play list in to a regular play list.
47. HP Printer drivers can often cause problems and use a lot of processor power so check in the activity monitor for HP Communicator, if it seems to be constantly running at 80% - 100% then try uninstalling it. I had problems on my Mac Mini for my HP PSC 1110 all in one with the HP software on OS X 10.3 maxing out the CPU after printing. I had to remove the software and just use the basic drivers rather than the full suite.
48. Check Classic is not running if not being used. Classic can be disabled from within System Preference.
49. Run Software Update. The latest updates sometimes provide speed increases as well as fix bugs and vulnerabilities.
51. Add More RAM. There is only so much you can do with software, the cheapest way to give you're Mac a speed boost is to upgrade the memory.
52. Reboot your Mac. After doing all this optimization it might be an idea to reboot your Mac. If your like me and use sleep mode for the majority of the time then a reboot once in a while often helps too!
Update: Interested in seeing how many hits this article has got and how to do it for your blog then read here?
Here are a list of 30 Bingo sites that offer either £5 or £10 free sign up bonus without having to deposit anything. They have all been tried and verified to work by Benjie and myself. We have both won hundreds of pounds through playing Bingo such as on www.boomtownbingo.com.
Most of these sites use the same service meaning that you will need to pick a different username per site, all your other details can stay the same.
The added advantage of them being the same service is that you can play yourself in order to increase your chance of winnings. One method is signing up for 4-5 sites at a time (in different browsers or computers) then all join the same bingo game (buying the maximum number of cards) this way the jackpot is higher and your chance of winnings is 4x higher.
Once you win take the money out immediately, most of these sites have a minimal withdrawal of £30 so if you win £20 you will need to deposit £10 then withdraw straight away.
Benjie has produced a spreadsheet to track your winnings (right click and select save link as).
Experience has told us that playing Sunday night is not a good time to win as its peak bingo playing time. I've had good results on week nights and weekend end afternoons.
Let me know how you get on and if you have done as well as us!
Previously reported on this forum post.
We spent an evening on Chat Roulette - this is what we came across:
Some sort fluffy toy.
At first he was like...
And then he was...
First of many hotties.
Dont spill that drink.
The Devil was recruiting.
One of many.
One of many well designed signs.
Really really shocked.
Really really really shocked.
They made the Devil laugh.
You cannot scare the Devil.
The Devil is amused.
One of the hardiest floors that you will want to provide around your home or work premises is a garage floor. This is because it must withstand many activities, temperatures, and chemicals spilling on it. A solution might be to choose a floor that withstands most things in the first place or to consider a floor finisher such as epoxy floor coatings for garage surfaces.
Epoxy as a Floor Coating
Epoxy can be used to protect many surfaces of flooring including concrete, brick, wood, ceramics, and metal. There are some plastics that epoxy will bond with as well. They are generally ones affected by acetone. Epoxy will also bond well with cured polyester fibreglass.
By applying heat, the cure time for epoxy can be speeded up. It is quick and easy to apply and so will not see your activities disrupted for too long. This is particularly important for a business situation when the lost time will mean lost money. It is, though, well worth the time and money spent to apply this kind of surface.
Epoxy has two main advantages. It creates a hard-wearing surface that is durable enough to withstand continuous and heavy traffic, and it has a shiny-gloss look to it that will brighten up any interior. For a garage situation, the first option will be just what you are looking to achieve.
From a protection point of view, epoxy can withstand a lot of contacts and is both chemical-proof and fire-resistant. It is worth checking with suppliers just what epoxy will protect the surface of your floor from. It is an investment in the fact that it will mean that your existing or new floor will last longer.
Heavy-Duty Interlocking Tiles
Some people with garages will opt for heavy-duty interlocking tiles. They are easy to install and maintain and built to last. They come in a choice of colours and have some chemical resistance. They provide a solution where you wish to go to the trouble of installing a completely new floor. Epoxy, however, has the advantage of being able to tackle the solution of protecting your existing floor without the need to install a new one. So, everything has its purpose. It depends whether you want to go to the expense of a completely new floor or not when you are perfectly happy with your old one or the one you planned to install, just wanted some means of looking after and protecting it more.
If your garage does not see all that much action, you could go for vinyl flooring. In a commercial situation, though, you would need something more hard-wearing such as an epoxy coating over your surface, which is more likely to be something like concrete in the first instance.
There is nothing to say that you cannot use carpet tiles. As in an office, if you spill a drink on one tile, you can replace just that tile. In a garage, if you spilled oil on one or two of the tiles, you could replace just those tiles and not have the expense of replacing the whole carpet. Carpet would, however, seem more appropriate in a showroom where they finalise selling a car, than inside the garage itself. At home, maybe it is best reserved for the living room, too.
Considering all the options, there are many materials that we could have our garage floor made from, whether it is for our home garage or a work premises that will see a lot more use. Whatever material we decide on as a basis for our floor, there is always the option of protecting it further. A popular coating that is applied these days is epoxy because it is extremely protective when it comes to commercial flooring and any flooring that must withstand working on.
When it comes to our kitchen, we all want the best kitchen cabinets that we can find. Our search should lead us to ones that are pleasing to look at, well made, and functional. It is, after all, the room in the house where we most need to save space, as it is where many of our appliances and gadgets reside.
We shall consider below the main reasons why kitchen cabinets are bought, replaced, and improved upon.
The number one reason why we have cabinets in our kitchen will be for storage. By fitting them closely together, less space is wasted. They will also be placed in convenient places so that we can access the cooking utensils and foodstuffs that we need. To accommodate enough cabinets, they will often be above as opposed to below or to the side.
The strategic way that shelving is placed within a kitchen cabinet and the use of hooks can make effective use of their storage space. You will be able to have different-sized cabinets depending on the size of the items that you want to store. For instance, the cabinet will need to be able to accommodate the height of a cereal packet if you want those to hand in your kitchen ready for breakfast. It is the meal that we all tend to eat in a rush, so as not to be late starting work.
For items that do not need to be stored out of sight or kept so clean, you can use tops and windowsills, and pelmets. It is only really, though, the aesthetic pleasers or gadgets such as juicers that should be on show. For example, antique copper jelly moulds make a nice aesthetic pleaser. For safety’s sake, it is also a good idea to keep knives inside the drawers. It always makes me cringe seeing them in a rack on a work surface. With the drawers of kitchen cabinets, they can be hidden away from curious role-playing children.
When we are cooking, we want everything to hand. All the utensils that we need should be gathered in one area so that we do not waste time looking for them. It can rather take the fun away from cooking if we have to hunt around too much for them.
In terms of their positioning, you will normally find that the knobs on the high kitchen cabinets are placed on the opposite side of the hinges and between 2.5 and 3 inches from the bottom corner of the door. With base cabinets, the knobs will be the same distance from the upper corner. Where drawers are 24 inches, very often a second knob will be fitted. You do not have to worry about any of this, though, because when you order kitchen cabinets, they can come with the knobs that you select as your preferred choice. They do add a nice finishing touch to kitchen cabinets. They need to be as practical as they are pleasing to look at because they will be used frequently to open the cupboards. Particularly with the high cabinets, you will want them to be easy to open and not have to struggle with their catch.
It is hygienic to house inside a cupboard the utensils that are going to be preparing food so that they are stored away from dust and germs.
When cleaning out cupboards, vinegar makes a good natural cleaner that you can use. If you mix a 50/50 solution of warm water and vinegar, you can pour it into a spray bottle to use. You can then mist it onto cabinets, let it settle for a minute, and then wipe away the grease that has accumulated over time with just a soft cloth.
We could include the aesthetic appearance of kitchen cabinets here, too, but that would not be the reason why we had them in the first place. They are needed for storage. Just to say something about it, though, they do add appeal to a kitchen when natural woods and superior grain looks are used. There is nothing like a matching set of handles to show that your kitchen means business and has been decorated to a high standard. Also, there are add-ons you can buy to enhance your kitchen cabinets.
To sum up, kitchen cabinets will provide us storage places, make sure items are always to hand, and be a hygienic way of accommodating many of the items that are housed in our kitchen.