PC Workshops latest customer had a mac which was running awfully slow and portraying all the signs of a virus!
She had been to the Apple Store and thought her computer had a virus because she was seeing the dreaded spinning rainbow pinwheel of doom more and more frequently, but the Apple employees told her Mac’s can’t get viruses and sent her on her way. They were right, but they left out a large part of the story – I’ll explain more in a moment. Truth is, Genius Bar appointments are timed and software issues can be difficult to diagnose, so maybe its time to see PC Workshop Warrington
Apple Told Me Macs Can’t Get Viruses. Really?
The long and short of it is that the technicians at the Apple Store are correct when they say Macs can’t get viruses, but that’s really only half the story. You don’t need virus protection, that’s 100% true: But when you said you’re seeing the pinwheel of doom a lot and your computer is slow as walking in treacle, there’s definitely something wrong
So What’s Slowing My Mac Down?
While it’s not a traditional virus that’s slowing your computer down, there’s something going on in the background that’s hogging up all your computer’s resources. It’s overworked – but it shouldn’t be. Most likely, we’ve got a software issue on our hands. Although Macs don’t get viruses, one of the primary reasons for a slow Mac is what are more commonly referred to as “Trojan Horses”.
“Speed Up Your Mac by Downloading Mac Keeper!” (Please don’t.)
Think about the concept of the Trojan Horse – you’re on the internet, zipping along just fine, and you see an ad for Mac Keeper or Mac Defender – “Click here to optimize your Mac!” “Can’t hurt, right?” you think, and you download the software. When you innocently type in your password to install it, you’ve unlocked the gates of Troy to whatever software’s being installed and all the hidden attackers come out and start slowing things down. Basically, you got duped.
Macs don’t need Mac Keeper, Mac Defender, or any of those pieces of software that purport to speed up your computer. In fact, they usually slow things down or worse. You see, Mac Keeper isn’t a virus per se, because you gave it permission to run on your computer just like any other piece of software you downloaded and installed. I’m just using these titles as examples – I can’t personally vouch for the quality of any individual piece of software. If you’d like to do some research for yourself, Google ‘Mac Keeper’ and take a look at what pops up.
If you haven’t installed any of the third-party software (or “bloatware”) on your computer, it could be any number of other things. Let’s consider a few options:
Repair Disk Permissions (Damaged file structure)
Is Your Computer Out Of Breath? (cant cope with your demands)
Do You Have Enough Free Hard Drive Space? (Hard Drive Full)
Is your Hard Drive failing?
This is by no means a comprehensive list of everything that could be slowing down your Mac, but I hope this points you in the right direction. This post is undoubtedly a work in progress, but I’m sure we’ll identify and solve the issues that cause the slow down.