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Macintosh OS/MacBook Pro is very slow on start up


Hello, Debba. I think my general question is on protecting my Mac from viruses and spyware. I have a Mac Book Pro bought in 2012, with the hard disk replaced in 2014, running on OSX 10.8.5. I have owned and used Macs for the last 20 years, and I have always felt fairly immune against viruses and spyware because not many people had Macs and the baddies who invent viruses and spyware tend to target PC Users. However, recently my Mac is running very slow on start up which worries me. When the hard disk was replaced in 2014, the technician said he had added a protection but didn't specify which one, and I cannot find anything in the applications file. It has run slightly slower on starting up since the new hard disk, but now it has become really slow. Basically, I am worried that the slow start up is because some spyware is activating. How can I tell if my Mac is infected? Which virus protectors are best, preferably free ones? Could the reduction in start up speed be due to something else? Thanks. Julia.

Julia, I JUST asked this same question on an Apple Forum!  How timely.  You are correct - not much out there to protect Macs.  Now, because you are on an older system, it MIGHT be an issue, but I have used Macs since before they were Macs and have never had any major problems in that regard.  

What COULD be slowing it down is that you need more memory.  Can you upgrade your RAM chips?  Get the most you can put in.  It has nothing to do with your hard drive at this point, unless your hard drive is almost filled to capacity.  You'll need several gigs open when you are reaching capacity, depending on how many gigs you have overall - 5-10 gigs is a good amount to save.

Have you Zapped your PRAM?  On startup, quickly put your fingers on Option-Command-P-R (before the bong) and hold it for 5 bongs, then let go and let it start-up normally.  If you aren't quick enough the first time, restart again.  Sometimes it takes a REALLY quick move to get there in time.  Be persistent.  That may help a lot.

I hope you find this helpful.


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Debba Robinson


AppleWorks 6, Systems up to 10.3.5, general trouble-shooting of hardware and some software.


In years past I taught computer K-8 and helped maintain Macs using sytems 7 and 8. Since 2001, I have not been working with computers daily, aside from doing my own work. I dabble in helping people out and enjoy the challenge of trying to figure out answers to your problems. Systems 7, 8, 9 and 10 are all in my repertoire now, at various levels of expertise. Please, NO networking questions.

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