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How to Troubleshoot macOS in easy steps

Do you need to troubleshoot macOS to fix a Apple Mac computer that is crashing or is slow or the computer keeps on shutting down.

Troubleshooting macOS in easy steps.

Apple macOS today is an advanced Apple Mac computer operating system that is rather reliable for most Apple Mac computer users, in most cases MacOS can go wrong, mainly, underline hardware issues can cause macOS to go wrong.

macOS today, with macOS Monterey and with macOS Big Sur means that most users will not have to troubleshoot a Apple macOS issue or problem.

The performance of macOS since 2019 has virtually disappeared due to newer Apple Mac computer hardware using reliable flash storage technology.

New Apple Mac computers since 2020 use flash storage combined with Apple custom silicone, these two technologies together with macOS Monterey give a robust macOS, causing a low maintenance Apple Mac computer, that should only need minimal MacOS troubleshooting.

The MacOS Recovery console and safe boot mode.

Two of the key macOS troubleshooting features of macOS is the macOS recovery console and macOS safe boot mode, for most Apple Mac computer users these two features are often the best ones to troubleshoot macOS.

Storage Maintenance for newer Apple Mac computers.

Newer Apple Mac computers that were manufactured since 2020 use flash storage technology hardware, which can lead to some users that simply run low or out of usable storage volume capacity space.

With the entry level Apple M1 iMac desktop computer which has 256 Gb of storage volume capacity, this might cause an issue with storage maintenance, especially for iMac computer users that replaced an older Apple Mac computer that had a 1Tb storage volume, which is 256 Gb x 4 in storage volume capacity

Most macOS software issues are caused by older mechanical storage volumes.

Most macOS troubleshooting issues are caused by using conventional storage volumes known as SATA storage which are prone to causing an older Apple Mac computer to become slow or very slow, and cause MacOS to give software issues and problems.

Troubleshooting a slow Apple Mac computer information.

Generally there are 3 main reasons why a Apple Mac computer will become slow or very slow.

1. The storage volume becomes full or the storage volume has built up a high number of files.

2. The memory also known as ram is used up and the macOS will start to use the storage volume to assist with memory, this causes the Apple Mac computer to become slow.

3. A process is running in the background which causes the memory and storage and CPU to have high usage, which leads to a slow Apple Mac computer.

Simply steps to do to help troubleshoot macOS that is slow.

1. Use the macOS activity Monitor to get information on the performance of the memory, CPU, and storage volume.

2. Close down all of the applications that are open apart from the macOS finder. This is also known as quitting an application.

3. Review which applications are starting up with the Apple Mac computer by looking at the macOS system preferences users and groups icon, and then review the panel for the items that startup with macOS.

macOS performance tips!

For most users, for the best macOS performance, keep the macOS startup items empty.

A quick way to help with a slow Apple Mac computer that has a memory performance issue is to restart the computers after reviewing the startup items.

Next, perform a Apple Mac computer malware check. A Apple Mac computer that has a malware infection can, and in most cases will become slow and even start to crash.

Focus on the storage volume, macOS performance issues will arise when a Apple Mac computer storage volume becomes full.

Did you know that macOS storage volumes usually do not need any maintenance tools to help optimise the storage volume performance. macOS has built in maintenance tasks that run when the computer is idle. So if you switch off your Apple Mac computer, in rare cases the computer will not run the maintenance scripts.

Use the built in manage storage macOS feature to help optimise the Apple Mac computer storage.

Apple has given macOS a built in storage management tool, that you can use to help reduce the number of files on the storage volume, and too free up storage space.

  1. Click on the Apple Menu items and choose the Apple black logo.
  2. Select about this mac or about this computer.
  3. click on the storage tab, and then click on manage.
  4. Start from the top of the list starting with the recommendations from Apple.
  5. review each point to help optimise the storage on the Apple Mac computer.

Hidden macOS storage tips that you need to know.

If you can see a large amount of data that is shown in other, or you can see a grey area that says purgeable, then this might be due to macOS updates that have been downloaded, or you might have a macOS installer in the Applications folder.

Or you have macOS snapshots which are called local snapshots, and these are created if you have setup your Apple Mac computer to backup to Apple Time Machine, and once backup has been created.

When the Apple Mac computer is setup to backup to Apple Time Machine, often a local snapshot is created, this is a Apple Time Machine local snapshot backup which is created even if the external storage volume is not connected to the Apple Mac computer.

Microsoft Outlook Application and Outlook user profiles.

Did you know that with Microsoft Outlook 2016, and with Microsoft Outlook 2019, a hidden user profile will use up a vast amount of storage on the Apple Mac computer if you have a large number of emails with attachments.

Consider using Microsoft Outlook online in lieu of using Microsoft Outlook for Mac. Try to avoid using Apple Mac Mail and Microsoft Outlook that is setup with the same email accounts. this is going to use up more storage space that is perhaps neseccary.

Use macOS safe boot to help with macOS maintenance and macOS performance.

To further optimise macOS from time to time shutdown the Apple Mac computer and simply restart the computer with the Shift key held down for a intel Apple Mac computer.

For a Apple Silicon computer, shut down the Apple Mac computer, and then switch on the computer, and keep the power button held down, until you get the macOS start-up options menu.

Click on the options icon, and then choose the Macintosh HD or the name of your start-up storage volume, use the Command Key and click on the Macintosh HD or the name of your start-up storage volume and choose safe boot.

The Apple Mac computer will start-up as normal, but you should see a safe boot written in red at the top right of the Apple Mac computer screen.

Now simply restart the Apple Mac computer from the Apple Menu Items and choose Restart…

How to troubleshoot macOS if the computer is crashing or freezing.

If your Apple Mac computer is crashing or freezing, then the most 4 common causes of a macOS computer crash are hardware faults which are in fact still quite rate and most Apple Mac computer users will not see a Apple Mac computer hardware failure.

A Apple Mac computer will crash or shutdown if the storage volume is faulty, if the memory RAM on the Apple Mac computer is faulty, the Apple Mac computer graphics system is faulty (common on MacBook Pro laptop pre 2020)

Other reasons a Apple Mac computer will crash is Apple Mac Malware, or a background task that is running and can cause a high CPU usage or the memory pressure on the Apple Mac computer gets too high.

Did you know that since macOS High Sierra, and with the introduction of flash storage known as SSD, most Apple Mac computer users, will not have any problems with macOS itself unless the Apple Mac computer has a problem with the hardware, or a third party application or software tool has been installed causing macOS to become unstable.

The most likely cause of performance issues with macOS today is either a full storage volume, or a Apple Mac computer has a Mac Malware infection.

Steps to follow and try to help with macOS crashing or freezing.

  1. Shut down the Apple Mac computer and start-up the computer to the macOS Recovery Console.
  2. See if the Apple Mac computer still shuts down or freezes whilst the computer has started from the macOS recovery console.
  3. if you have a Apple Time Machine backup then use the macOS recovery console Disk First Aid to repair the Volumes, then Containers, then the Disks on the Apple Mac computer.

Read our guide on how to use the macOS Recovery Console.

The macOS Spotlight index.

In some very rare cases the macOS spotlight index becomes corrupted or damaged, and the macOS can become slow or unstable. If you have a Apple Mac computer that has suddenly become slow or very slow. The macOS spotlight index might be corrupted or damaged.

Did you know that when your Apple Mac computer starts up if the Apple Mac computer macOS file system needs a repair or the spotlight index is damaged macOS will do a macOS start-up repair.

A macOS start-up repair will make the Apple macOS computer start-up loading bar go slow or very slow.

Keep you Apple Mac computer on to help with the overall performance of the computer.

With macOS, if a Apple Mac computer is left switch on, and the Apple Mac computer is idle or not being used, macOS will run a background maintenance scripts.

Apple Mac Support, by Keith Thomas provides a same day and a same hour Apple MacOS computer maintenance service for both home users, for Apple Store UK customers, and for small businesses and for companies that need to get expert professional Apple macOS support and assistance with Apple Mac computer maintenance.

Do you need to get further help and assistance with troubleshooting macOS?

Simply complete the online website contact form to ask for assistance with macOS computer maintenance, or book a Remote Apple Mac computer maintenance service with Keith Thomas our senior Apple Mac computer maintenance engineer and macOS specialist with over 30 years of macOS IT support and macOS knowledge.

  • Complete the online website contact form. (open 24 Hours) with 10:30 am to 21:00 pm response times for completed forms sent to us.
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