Does a Clean install make a difference?

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Lion (10.7)' started by The13thDoctor, Oct 28, 2011.

  1. The13thDoctor macrumors regular

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    #1
    I am currently debating on whether to reinstall Lion, So i am interested in whether it actually makes a difference.
     
  2. szolr macrumors 6502

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    #2
    Yes it does actually. You save some extra space on the hard drive as Snow Leopard gets completely wiped off. :) This causes you to lose some of the standard desktop backgrounds for instance and some other minor stuff that you won't notice had gone. But you'll probably appreciate the extra space-think it was about 0.5 GB.
     
  3. The13thDoctor thread starter macrumors regular

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  4. szolr macrumors 6502

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    #4
    Probably, in theory, it'll make the OS slightly faster. But I'd be lying if I said I noticed a difference on my iMac.
     
  5. The13thDoctor thread starter macrumors regular

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    #5
    Lions been sluggish on me lately on my Macbook, So should I reinstall lion?
     
  6. szolr macrumors 6502

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    #6
    It will definitely do more good than bad. If you've got everything backed up already or can back everything up quickly, I'd recommend doing the OS reinstall. :cool:
     
  7. Steve's Barber macrumors 6502a

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    #7
    You'll notice a difference at first... but after a while as your mac continues to collect files and anomalies it will get sluggish again. Probably negligible though.

    I still insist that Lion with all its iOS "fluff" is the first mac OS better suited for SSD's and Apple is headed that way. Right now, with "restore windows" enabled, my MBP is pretty much unusable after booting for a good 3 minutes as it grinds and chokes to restore a few apps and their previous state (5400rpm HDD). I finally had to disable it and even at that it boots much slower than SL.
     
  8. MisterMe macrumors G4

    MisterMe

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    #8
    This Mac user of 22 years can state without equivocation that it makes does not make a difference. Clean Install is a procedure intended to fix vexing problems with your computer. It is not a routine maintenance. It is not a tune-up routine. Most people who recommend Clean Install as such have no clue what will really ensure peak performance.

    That said, a Clean Install will obviously return a system to a state where it has not yet been thoroughly fouled-up by a clueless user. Get a clue, don't foul-up your system, and save yourself the time and lost productivity required to perform a Clean Install.
     
  9. robgendreau macrumors 68030

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    #9
    I agree with MisterMe, but not as forcefully ;)

    Apple does not recommend "clean installs," and they are not even an option anymore. These days, what most people mean by "clean install" is a wiping of their drive followed by reinstallation of system software, and then reinstallation or migration of their user data and applications. That's more like what was once called "erase and install."

    That this procedure will help is largely a guess; you might, by chance, eliminate a troublesome or corrupted system file, but in my experience you are almost as likely to introduce a new problem, not to mention the hassle involved (there's a thread just below here where a guy lost his data as a result of this process). Problems with your Mac are more often with user-installed stuff, not the system itself. So if you reinstall the system software you've only dealt with a small portion of what might be causing your problems. When you reinstall or migrate your user stuff you reintroduce the problem.

    I'd like to know where the "files and anomalies" are that are causing Lion slowdowns; my suggestion is to find out why these are causing problems and eliminate them. Why replace your whole system??

    Fire up Console and Activity Monitor and do so digging and figure out why your machine has slowed. Usually it's stuff you're doing, like hidden processes working from software you installed that you didn't realize were running. For example, I had CrashReporter going nuts once because a trivial process from EyeTV or something kept opening and crashing. Simply killing it solved the problem. Restarting would have done the same thing, and if I'd restarted and did a clean install it would have also solved the problem, but it would have been totally unnecessary.

    Rob
     
  10. Steve's Barber macrumors 6502a

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    #10
    You guys and your "semantics" crack me up. :D

    The average OSX user hasn't the time (yes, I said time) nor the sleuthing skills to track down problems. Sometimes it's just better to start with a clean slate so I don't blame anybody for doing a clean install, then restoring the home folder. If anything just for peace of mind.

    After installing/uninstalling dozens of apps my system is peppered with useless crap so I nuke my OS about once a year. Sure. Keep your system tuned and you'll never have problems but who the hell really does that? (To the degree it should be done anyway).

    Besides, I suspect the inquiries regarding Lion "clean installs" stem from Lion's general sluggishness and performance that people are trying to fix compared to Snow Leopard. In these cases then it's a lost cause IMO. Lion is too disk/memory hungry and the speed factor is just part of it.
     
  11. MisterMe macrumors G4

    MisterMe

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    #11
    Complete nonsense. Unless the user is doing something that is strongly discouraged like running as root, then it is virtually impossible to corrupt the OS. Because the OS is not the problem, replacing the OS is not the solution. Wiping your hard drive is one of the most time-wasting things that you can do. It is disingenuous to tout this as a solution for people who running short on time.
     
  12. rossip macrumors regular

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    #12
    MisterMe, I find it very hard to believe that if you are really a mac (or PC) user for 22 years and you actually use your computers in real life situations, that you haven't seen your computers degrade in performance and develop bugs that only a clean install can fix. The issue is computers are an Open System and as such are intrinsically prone to getting fouled up even if you follow the best practices. Apple can't account for what third party software makers write for there OS. Macs aren't iPad's or iPhones, apple can't ban software that does follow their best practices. And even apps from reputable publishers can cause problems. So saying clean installs are a waste of time is really either ignorant or irresponsible, especially if you don't know what state the users computer is in.

    Clean install's, when done properly, eliminate all risk that disk corruption or a bad app could be causing you issues. If your having issues with your system after a clean install, and it's not a known or widespread bug, then the only thing left is hardware (or firmware) that could be causing the problem.

    It's my firm belief that most people who are having issues post upgrading to lion are because they didn't do a clean install (and for good reason, since apple has made it so unobvious and hidden this time around).

    So, SlyFoxHound, will a clean install revert my computer to a bug free, like new, state? The answer is yes. Will it improve performance? That depends on how screwed up your computer is currently. I'm assuming it must be kind of screwed up for you to post this thread. If the system in question is one in your signature, then it looks like you have plenty of ram so that shouldn't be the issue, even with Lion. I personally haven't experienced any noticeable Lion slow down on my system and I'm running an iMac 7,1 (2007) w/ 6 GB ram.
     
  13. yogimac macrumors newbie

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    #13
    it Does

    Clean Install made a lot of diff in my case.Mac book Pro performs much better now and no fan noise and heating up.:D
     
  14. Dolorian macrumors 65816

    Dolorian

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    #14
    A clean install does makes a difference, I recently did a clean install of Lion after using it by upgrading from SL and it did wonders to it. It runs faster and without any of the previous glitches I was experiencing.

    A clean install also frees up plenty of HD space and cleans up your System Library from a lot of the preferences and application specific files you may no longer be using.
     
  15. MisterMe macrumors G4

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    #15
    Not only have I used Macs for 22 years, Macs were not my first computers--not by a long sight. Your post is almost complete nonsense. Best practices for MacOS X are to leave it alone. Since Apple added journaling to HFS+, the most I do to my hard drive is to occasionally run File System Check (fsck -fy) from the command line in Single User Mode. Even though I do this no more than once a year, the result is usually that nothing is wrong and nothing needed fixing. My experience with the Macs that I own and the Macs that I am in charge of is that it has no problems in the absence hardware gone bad. A clean install can't fix that.
     
  16. ljonesj macrumors 6502a

    ljonesj

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    #16
    well i had issues when i did do a clean install of lion on my macbook pro after i borked the linux install i was doing before it was an upgrade from sl. what finally straightened it out was getting sea gates firmware update for my hybrid drive it finally got my speed back and no slow downs did not have this with the upgrade to lion only the clean install of it
     
  17. GuillaumeB macrumors 6502

    GuillaumeB

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    #17
    Well as for me after upgrading from Snow Leopard to Lion i made a clean install of ... Snow Leopard... and certainly won't upgrade to the super sluggish and buggy King of Cat. It's not like they implemented killer features anyways..
     
  18. andylyon macrumors 6502a

    andylyon

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    #18
    Not agreeing disagreeing with anyone:

    But I clean installed Lion and I notice very slight performance improvements and it felt nice to start with a clean slate again.

    EDIT: Forgot the main info, I did it to fix my sporadic wifi connection and while it did make it perfect it certainly improved it.
     
  19. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #19
    My experience with install operating systems is that I found that I have less problems with a clean install as opposed to an upgrade. For me Lion has been very stable and I've not incurred any issues. Was that because of the clean install or because I have 8gb of ram. I don't know, but I can say I generally have less problems compared to others when going the clean install route
     

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