Mac disk utility?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by heabrook, Jan 10, 2006.

  1. heabrook macrumors newbie

    heabrook

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2006
    Location:
    Colorado
    #1
    Hi, I'm new to the Mac environment. I used to run certain utilities on my PC for basic upkeep. Are there any applications for the Mac that you need to run once in a while to clear out old files, etc?

    Also.. I couldn't get a straightforward answer when I posed the question to the people at my local Mac store, should I have a virus protection program? If so, can you recommend one?

    I want to be sure that I am doing all that needs to be done to keep my Mac in running order. Any suggestions are welcome. :)
     
  2. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2004
    Location:
    Adelaide, Australia
    #2
    You can get away with doing nothing to be honest. Don't get antivirus software because as yet there aren't any threats. Maybe repair your permissions every now and then from an app called Disk utility in the Utilities folder, that's about it. :)

    Welcome to Mac. :)
     
  3. mduser63 macrumors 68040

    mduser63

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2004
    Location:
    Salt Lake City, UT
    #3
    As always, mad jew is right. Many (most?) Mac users, myself included, don't use antivirus software. There has never been a virus for Mac OS X in the nearly 5 years that it has been out. Macs require a lot less maintenance than PCs. The only thing I do is repair permissions occasionally (once or twice a month maybe) and leave my Mac on overnight every so often so that the routine maintenance scripts get run. They run automatically in the middle of the night, or you can manually run them pretty easily using software like Onyx.
     
  4. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2004
    Location:
    Adelaide, Australia
    #4
    Just an FYI, any Mac running 10.4.2 or later will run the maintenance periodical scripts either between 3:00AM and 5:00AM or, if the machine is asleep, the next time it wakes up. So, current Macs don't even need to be left on overnight for the periodicals.

    All a new switcher has to do is get into the habit of sleeping their Mac rather than shut it down each night. Sleeping is an extremely low power mode (only the RAM and some parts of the logic board get power) which is great because it also allows for practically instant start up in the morning. :)
     
  5. heabrook thread starter macrumors newbie

    heabrook

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    Jan 10, 2006
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    Colorado
  6. YS2003 macrumors 68020

    YS2003

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2004
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    Finally I have arrived.....
    #6
    So, there is no need to run MacJanitor? I always use Mac's sleep mode instead of shutting them down. All of my Macs are running 10.4.4. Does Apple's web site confirm this "cron job" when you wake up Macs from sleep?
     
  7. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2004
    Location:
    Adelaide, Australia
    #7
    I don't have MacJanitor but I wouldn't even if the crons didn't run on start up. :p

    Periodicals on awakening started in 10.4.2 FWIW. :)
     
  8. YS2003 macrumors 68020

    YS2003

    Joined:
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    Finally I have arrived.....
    #8
    Excellent, Mad Jew. Thanks for confirming this.

    That site says: This update ensures that periodic background maintenance tasks run as scheduled in launchd.conf.

    That means I don't have to run crons after my Macs wake from their sleep (I have 4 of them; running crons on 4 machines can be a pain in the neck).
     
  9. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2004
    Location:
    Adelaide, Australia
    #9
    That's right. :p

    There are some pages on Apple's site that contradict this but they were all written before 10.4.2. :)
     
  10. grapes911 Moderator emeritus

    grapes911

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    Jul 28, 2003
    Location:
    Citizens Bank Park
    #10
    This isn't really important, but some people may find this interesting:
    Calling them "cron jobs" isn't really correct. Cron is a scheduler program that runs other programs, scripts, or commands at certain scheduled times. Apple used cron to schedule the periodic scripts prior to 10.4. Since 10.4, Launchd now schedules the periodic scripts. Cron is still there, it just doesn't schedule anything by default.
     
  11. joelwnelson macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2005
    #11
    For disk utilities, I use Onyx, Apple Disk Utility, iDefrag, and TechTool Pro. The free Onyx program is excellent. I don't use TTP as much as I used to but it is very useful for disk volume errors, rebuilding directories, fixing folders, etc.
     
  12. grapes911 Moderator emeritus

    grapes911

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2003
    Location:
    Citizens Bank Park
    #12
    The best thing to do is let the periodic scripts run and repair permissions every once and while. Don't do anything else unless you have a problem. 3rd party maintenance programs are great when you have a problem. If you don't have a problem, they are better at creating problems than preventing them.

    Onxy is overrated. It doesn't do anything but bring a bunch of semi-related programs, scripts, and command, together and in one place. It's nice for average and below average users to have everything together, but don't get caught up in the hype that this program is keeping your computer running.

    Be careful with defragging. OS X sometimes stores files around the disk in certain orders so they can be read easier. This is especially true of files needed for boot. Sometimes defragging can actually slow your Mac down.
     

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