How often do you use Disk Utility, Maintenance Scripts, Clear Cache, etc. ?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by Aniej, Nov 10, 2006.

  1. Aniej macrumors 68000

    Aniej

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2006
    #1
    I was just wondering how often do you run Disk Utility, Maintenance Scripts, Update Prebindings, clear your caches, etc.?

    More specifically, is it possible to do this too often, and what would you say is just the right frequency?

    Even more specifically;), what consequences does cleaning the user cache and cleaning the system cache have?

    What are prebindings and why do I need to update and redo them?

    Is there any reason to repair the permissions of OS 9 in disk utility if I never use it?

    What's a .DS_Store file and is it ok to remove them?
     
  2. WildCowboy Administrator/Editor

    WildCowboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2005
    #2
    To be honest, I don't do any of these things and my machine runs just fine.

    Updating prebindings updates the links between an application and the libraries needed to run it. It can be useful to do if you're having specific problems, but again, I don't do it as a maintenance task.

    .DS_Store files remember things like window size and organization. There are global settings for this sort of thing, and .DS_Store files provide instructions when a specific folder is supposed to deviate from the global settings. Yes, the implementation isn't great, as OS X sticks .DS_Store files everywhere (even when not needed), but do be careful about getting rid of ones you might need.
     
  3. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2004
    Location:
    Adelaide, Australia
    #3
    I'm with that WildCowboy thing and have a laissez faire approach. Every now and then I repair my permissions (after installing an app or system update) but I never manually clear my cache or up[date my pre-bindings. The OS does all of this when it needs to. :)
     
  4. Aniej thread starter macrumors 68000

    Aniej

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2006
    #4
    Interesting! It would not be actively harmful though for me to do any of these things right?
     
  5. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

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    Apr 3, 2004
    Location:
    Adelaide, Australia
    #5
    Technically, no, but I find that for many users it's best to leave the apps that initiate these processes alone. Some of the apps such as OnyX are very powerful and if a user does the wrong thing in them, they can sometimes wreck a system. :(
     
  6. KingYaba macrumors 68040

    KingYaba

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2005
    Location:
    Up the irons
    #6
    I stopped using OnyX in favor of MainMenu a long time ago. Very simple little App and keeps my computers in good shape. :)

    I run it once a month mainly to free up space. (clearing cache, empty trash, stuff like that)
     
  7. iBookG4user macrumors 604

    iBookG4user

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2006
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #7
    Unless I'm having trouble with my Mac, then I never use any of those programs. I let the OS handle all that stuff.
     
  8. ozontheroad macrumors 6502

    ozontheroad

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2006
    Location:
    the reef
    #8
    there's a new program by the Onyx people called Maintenance.

    It a light version of Onyx and does a good job.

    I don't use every feature of the program every time, it would be overkill.

    But I do run the maintenance scripts once a week. I have a PowerBook so I don't leave it on during the night.
     
  9. Aniej thread starter macrumors 68000

    Aniej

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2006
    #9
    And the best part is I didn't even tell you I had been using onyX until two weeks ago. I just came across mainmenu also when I was on versiontracker and have been using it for the past two weeks. I love it. such a great product. Something about onyX made me feel uncomfortable and I really don't like the manner in which you have to run it features. Mainmenu runs right in the menubar and I just grab it when I want it. I would strongly recommend this free utility. I would also say Onyx is a reasonable runner-up.
     
  10. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

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    Apr 3, 2004
    Location:
    Adelaide, Australia
    #10

    If you have 10.4.2 or later and you sleep your machine rather than shut it down, the maintenance scripts will run the next time you wake the machine up FWIW. :)
     
  11. Aniej thread starter macrumors 68000

    Aniej

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2006
    #11
    I have 10.4.8

    They will run each time I wake the computer from sleep? As I understood it, the daily, weekly, and monthly cron maintenance scripts run early in the morning at about 3am. It is possible I have this wrong, but it's what I thought.
     
  12. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2004
    Location:
    Adelaide, Australia
    #12
    They run by default at about 3:00AM (slightly different for each machine), but if you have 10.4.2 or later and the machine is asleep at this time, they will automatically run the next time you wake your machine up. Of course, that doesn't mean they all run, just those that were scheduled to run that morning. This doesn't happen if the machine was shut down though. :)
     
  13. WildCowboy Administrator/Editor

    WildCowboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2005
    #13
    Yes, that is correct...it runs during the night if it can, but if the computer is asleep, it will run when it wakes up.

    The way I understand it, the launchd process that was used to tell cron scripts when to run didn't use to count sleep time. So if your computer slept 12 hours every day, things would run half as often as they were supposed to. And if you restarted frequently, the longer-term things may never run. This was fixed in 10.4.2, and sleep time is now counted.

    You can check and see when the last time your cron scripts ran by using the following Terminal command:

    Code:
    ls -al /var/log/*.out
    Checking mine, my daily last ran earlier today, my weekly ran on October 30th, and my monthly ran on October 10th. So, not too bad.
     
  14. gekko513 macrumors 603

    gekko513

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2003
    #14
    I've had Macs for more than three years and I haven't done regular maintenance on any of them, and I've only had to reinstall once when a harddrive crashed on a 12" PowerBook.

    I can vaguely remember that I ran repair permissions and did some general troubleshooting back in the days of Panther, but Tiger has been flawless for me.
     
  15. ChickenSwartz macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2006
    #15
    If you are that worried about it, you can download MacJanitor.
     
  16. Aniej thread starter macrumors 68000

    Aniej

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2006
    #16
    I'm not that worried about it at all. Just trying to learn more about what each of these maintenance items do. I am mostly interested because of the significant amount of utilities I have seen popping up on version tracker for this purpose and was just curious.
     

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