My Mac struggles with Yosemite
Discover how to make sure Yosemite speeds along on your Mac
The upgrade from OS X 10.9 to OS X 10.10 introduced new versions of built-in apps that made greater use of iCloud for collaborative working. However, there have been teething troubles with syncing documents using iCloud Drive.
Alongside this, many users have reported ongoing networking and Wi-Fi problems in Yosemite. On the whole, people are hoping that Apple concentrates on fixing problems in the upcoming release of El Capitan.
Yosemite’s issues have mostly been addressed by Apple in a series of software updates. If the system is still giving you problems, the first thing you should do is make sure you have the latest update (10.10.5 is currently the latest version). Go to the App Store and click Updates. If any are available for OS X, they’ll be listed above app updates – click Update next to them, or Update All.
The same advice applies to troublesome apps: user feedback and technical updates contribute to frequent app improvements, so install newer versions whenever you can.
You can set OS X to perform automatic updates for apps installed from the Mac App Store. Open System Preferences > App Store, select ‘Automatically check for updates’ and then enable all of the download and install options below.
Fixing Wi-Fi woes
Yosemite doesn’t always work smoothly with existing Wi-Fi and Bluetooth devices, as early upgraders discovered. A subsequent Apple update has apparently fixed the Wi-Fi problem, but if you still have trouble with Bluetooth accessories, try resetting your Mac’s NVRAM (see page 38). Graphical issues were relatively common on Mavericks and persisted in Yosemite, particularly on Macs that struggle with its demands. 8GB of free drive space and 2GB of RAM are essential. More of both is preferable.
It’s hard to update the graphics card on a Mac, but some older Macs have upgradable RAM. Use Crucial System Scanner (uk. crucial.com) to determine if an upgrade is available for yours.
If upgrading your hardware is out of the question, try reducing the impact of the newer system features on your Mac. Widgets in Notification Center can be sacrificed in System Preferences > Extensions > Today; try deselecting real-time items such as Stocks and Weather.
On a Mac with a very low specification, visual effects on the Dock – magnification as you move over icons and, less so, animating icons as apps open – can get juddery. You can turn these off in System Preferences > Dock.
Some users report that they occasionally can’t save a document because the Save dialog box hangs off the edge of the screen. There is an annoying bug in Yosemite that increases the Save As dialog box’s size each time you use it. Hold down ß and put the pointer over one edge of the dialog and drag it inwards to reduce its height and width together. You can then reach the Save button.
Anyone can try the public beta of El Capitan to test app and hardware compatibility (see page 50), but bear in mind it’s not ready for daily use. Your Mac can be set to automatically install updates to its operating system, which can help to resolve problems with little effort on your part.