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. cru­ 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.

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