Best OS for my MBA 1.4 GHz 2GB RAM late 2010?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by appleuserfan, Oct 16, 2014.

  1. appleuserfan, Oct 16, 2014
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2014

    appleuserfan macrumors member

    Oct 16, 2014
    Hi all,

    I just bought a MacBook Air 11" with C2D 1.4 ghz, 2gb ram and 64 GB of ssd.
    Firstly i want to say that i have a MBP Early 2011(Core i7, 8GB RAM, 128 SSD) as main pc and this MBA is just for "simple" activies in university(writing texts, web browsing and music).

    So i want that this MBA do few things but to these things very well(no lag, smooth etc.)

    Said these things, what is the best OS for me? Snow Leopard, Lion, Mountain Lion or even Mavericks(that a lot of users said that run better than Lion/ML)?

    P.S: extra question: i paid it 446 dollars, its a good price or no?
    Thanks in advance!
  2. FuNGi macrumors 65816


    Feb 26, 2010
    At a minimum Mavericks due to RAM compression technology. I'm not sure if Yosemite will improve your experience beyond that though, or worsen it for that matter. Regarding the price – I'd say it's a tad bit expensive for bottom-of-the barrel specifications but comparable to an iPad.
  3. appleuserfan thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 16, 2014
    Yes i sold my ipad mini retina and with a plus of 70 dollars i bought it...

    so, definitely, will Mavericks be the best choice for me? :)
  4. nutmac macrumors 68040

    Mar 30, 2004
    I would use Snow Leopard instead, which has minimum RAM requirement of 1GB (vs. 2GB for Mavericks).

    As for the price, I think $446 is a lousy price as I find that configuration to be unusable for anything but Snow Leopard. I would probably spend that money toward iPad + keyboard case instead.
  5. appleuserfan thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 16, 2014
    You want to kill all my fairies dreams with my little small basic macbook air?
  6. ryannel2003 macrumors 68000


    Jan 30, 2005
    Greenville, NC
    For basic web browsing and text editing the Air will be fine. That is an ok price and you only added $70 for a fully functional computer so I think you did good. As for the OS, I would go with Mavericks at the least because SL is becoming outdated and a lot of newer apps won't run with it. Mavericks is good at managing memory as well.
  7. appleuserfan thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 16, 2014
    Little update: my macbook air has arrived (awesome, the case/display like new).

    I tried Yosemite and run almost good but has too many microlags (and sometimes even big lags) in animations even with normal usage. I have to say that Safari has no lags(and is pretty fast, sure faster than chrome) and the "basic" apps has no lags. Just the animations (for example opening the apps folder from dock, opening launchpad, launching an app when another app is running ecc)

    So i just installed Snow Leoapard and, guys, IT'S AWESOME :D.

    Is completely smooth, no lags at all even with a "stress" or intense usage (Chrome with various tabs, itunes for listenining some music and some files conversion) :cool:

    Definitely Snow Leopard is the one (and only?) OS that will run on this mac perfectly. You will feel it like a MB Pro during normal/mid usage.
    But if you are not worried about microlags and some lags or you simply don't care about these things, this macbook will run Yosemite too without big problems.

    Thanks for all your answers guys during my first approach experience :):)
  8. mangomind macrumors 6502a


    Mar 15, 2012
    I would have installed Mavericks.... a few months ago I finally decided to upgrade a late 2010 mac from snow leopard to mavericks, and it definitely sped it up. The RAM compression and software optimization technologies definitely improved speed. And with that update, the days of waiting and watching a beachball spin were over.

    With Mavericks, that 2010 Mac performed much better than snow leopard, lion, and mountain lion. Snow leopard animations were slower and had delays. Mountain Lion animations dropped frames, and Lion even more so. Mavericks is silky smooth, fast, and responsive. Just my objective experience.

    Haven't tried Yosemite yet, but plan to in a few months. I always wait at a least a few months for additional bug fixes after the initial release of any OS for any device. It's just not worth the potential for bugs and performance issues. Even so, if I deem an update will slow down my workflow, I won't update. So snow leopard may be better for you, who knows.
  9. appleuserfan thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 16, 2014
    My MBA with Yosemite run with 0 mb of free ram and 90% of cpu usage since the first boot.
    With mavericks is impossible that will run better
  10. snorkelman macrumors 6502a


    Oct 25, 2010
    Id have gone with snow leopard too

    The 1GB of headroom on SL over is base memory requirements will be of much more appreciable benefit on your machine than any memory compression techniques etc that Mavericks brought to the party

    Not sure werher Apple still offer security updates for SL any longer though...
  11. 556fmjoe macrumors 65816


    Apr 19, 2014
    The last security update for SL was in Sept. 2013.
  12. flowrider macrumors 601


    Nov 23, 2012
    And that, my friends, is a BIGGIE. One that most folks seem to ignore when they are recommending which OS to run. ML, Mavericks, and of course Yosemite are the only OS's still being supported by Apple. To use anything less is foolhardy IMHO.

  13. cjmillsnun macrumors 68020

    Aug 28, 2009
    Agreed. On that age computer, my choice would be ML.
  14. appleuserfan thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 16, 2014
    I'll try Mavericks and if is not cool enough i will go forever with SL.

    The question is: if i use this mba not for work(since i have a wonderful mbpro) will i need all the security that this world can offer? NO.

    If i use my mba only for web browsing (with NO important mail/social accounts), viewing PDF or similar activities, will i need this security? NO.

    But i want a perfectly smooth Mac, for sure. So Snow Leopard (and maybe mavericks if will be good when i'll try in the next hours) will be the choice.
    Of course i will never run on my main mbpro, where i also work, an outdated OS like SL.
  15. appleuserfan thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 16, 2014
    Mavericks tested and.....yep, is lagging and more resource hungry.

    No way, this MBA want the one and only Snow Leopard. Roarrrrrrrrr
  16. rekhyt macrumors 65816

    Jun 20, 2008
    Part of the old MR guard.
    The RAM compression technology in Mavericks was a godsend. I'm on a 4 GB device at the moment, so RAM is insanely sparse, but now I am able to run quite a number of tabs and still be able to use other apps.

    Mine is fine with Mavericks.
  17. appleuserfan thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 16, 2014
    You have 4 GB of ram :p i know that mavericks will work fine (i tested it on My previous mb late 2008).

    But with 2 GB of ram, only SL will work FAST like a Mac HAVE TO run.
  18. Windowsrefugee macrumors regular

    Mar 14, 2011
    Microsoft Land
    I have similar situation except have 4 GB of RAM, but cannot find 10.9 on Apple web support. Any suggestions as to where to download it?
  19. flowrider macrumors 601


    Nov 23, 2012
    ^^^^I did a Google search and the download sites, I saw looked suspicious to me. If you can't find a site, LMK. I have made installation USB Flash Drives for OS 10.8, 10.9, and 10.10.

    If you can't find a download, send me a blank 8GB USB 3.0 stick, and I'll be glad to duplicate it for you for the price of the return postage.


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