MacOS (Mojave) Optimisation Guide

This guide will show you how to maximise the performance of your Mac when you need it to perform its best during performances, presentations or any other performance-critical tasks. All steps can of course be done no matter the situation to improve performance.

Let's begin

Restart Mac

Restarting a mac will solve issues that can be non related or seem very random. It will reset the computers “logic” and/or current state which means that the CPU, memory, controllers and peripherals will receive their reset commands and return to their starting point. 

Insert Power Adapter

Believe it or not, but the power adapter will ensure a more stable computer.

Quit Unused Applications

If you click ⌘+Tab you will se all active applications. Use ⌘+Q to completely shut down all applications that you don’t need. Just clicking the red cross will not completely shut down the application, this works differently from windows computers.

Disable Wi-Fi (if not needed)

If you don’t need internet during your performance i recommend that you temporarily disable it. Turn it back on when you need it again.

Click Wi-Fi sign in the top right -> Turn off Wi-Fi

Disable Bluetooth (if not needed)

If you don’t need bluetooth during your performance i recommend that you temporarily disable it. Turn it back on when you need it again.

Click Bluetooth sign in the top right -> Turn off Bluetooth

Disable Siri

Go to:
 -> System preferences -> Siri
-> Uncheck Enable Ask Siri

Disable Firewall

This option is only recommended if you are not connected to a network

Go to:
 -> System preferences -> Security & Privacy -> Firewall
-> Click Turn Off Firewall

Disable Anti-Virus Software

This option is only recommended if you are not connected to a network. If you have any third party anti virus software installed i recommend that you temporarily disable this during performance.

Optimise Energy Saver Settings

The energy saver settings can be found in:

 -> System preferences -> Energy saver -> Power adapter
-> Uncheck Automatic graphics switching
-> Set Turn display off after to Never
-> Check Prevent computer from sleeping automatically when the display is off
-> Uncheck Put hard disks to sleep when possible
-> Uncheck Wake for Wi-Fi network access
-> Uncheck Enable Power Nap while plugged into a power adapter

Disable Visual Effects

Go to:
 -> System preferences -> Accessibility -> Display
-> Check Reduce motion
-> Check Reduce transparency 

Disable Screen Saver

Go to:
 -> System preferences -> Desktop & Screen saver -> Screen saver
-> Set screen saver to start Never

Disable Automatic Updates

Go to:
 -> System preferences -> Software update
-> Uncheck Automatically keep my Mac up to date

Disable Spotlight Indexing

Spotlight continuously indexes your disks to keep track of your files and improve search speed, this can affect your drive performance.

Go to:
 -> System preferences -> Spotlight -> Privacy
-> Click the + sign and add your MacintoshHD drive.

Disable Automatic Brightness

Go to:

 -> System preferences -> Displays -> Display
-> Uncheck Automatically adjust brightness
-> Click Night Shift and set schedule to Off

Clean Desktop

Desktop icons means more images that the computer needs to render which takes up RAM and disc space.

Shut Down Any Resource Heavy Applications Using Activity Monitor

MacOS may be running applications and processes in the background that are not visible to you. In the Activity Monitor you are able to see all active applications and processes and shut them down one by one. We are also able to monitor their CPU, memory, energy, disk and network usage. To find the Activity Monitor

Go to:
Finder -> Applications -> Utilities -> Activity Monitor

  • The CPU pane shows how processes are affecting the processor activity.
  • The Memory pane shows how the RAM is used by apps on your Mac.
  • The Energy pane shows the overall energy use and the energy used by each app.
  • The Disk pane shows the amount of data that each process has read from your disk and has written to it.
  • The Network identifies which processes send and receive the most data.

Go through all tabs and close all applications that are resource heavy and that you don’t need.

Disable Notifications

If you are using this guide to improve computer performance during a presentation turning of notifications is a good idea. It will not only prevent an embarrassing email notifications from showing, but it will also increase performance.

Go to:
 -> System preferences -> Notifications
-> Go through all the apps in the list and disable all

Get Rid Of Unused Files And Applications

A clean system is a happy system and a happy system performs better. That is why we must go through all folders one by one and delete all unused files and applications.

Reset NVRAM And PRAM

This can prevent your mac from doing strange things with audio, booting with wrong resolution, weird colours and other unexplainable things.

Shut down your Mac, press the power button, and hold down Command+Option+P+R before you hear your Mac’s startup tune. If you keep these keys depressed, you should hear the startup chime for the second time. This means NVRAM and PRAM are reset.

Manage Startup Items

Prevent applications to automatically start when you boot your computer.

Go to:
 -> System preferences -> Users & Groups -> Login items -> Select Items and click the minus button to remove it.

Do A Complete CleanMyMac X Run

Finally, i really like to recommend this application to people because it really works and makes a difference. It’s an app for clearing out unused and unnecessary files but it also includes optimisation tools, maintenance scripts and disk repairing. The app knows what files it can and cannot delete and i’ve never experienced anything other than perfect here.

The first time a used the software i had spent several hours going through files and folders in order to delete and clean my disk, then i downloaded and used CleanMyMac and was able to get rid of another 50 gb of extra junk that i wasn’t able to locate otherwise. You are always prompted before anything gets deleted and you can always uncheck things you want to keep.

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