How to fix a painfully slow imac.

Discussion in 'iMac' started by SoApple, Nov 21, 2016.

  1. SoApple, Nov 21, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2016

    SoApple macrumors regular

    Sep 21, 2012
    I own a very old - but up until about last year - once usable iMac. It's the 2007 iMac 2.0 GHz Intel "Core 2 Duo". My HDD died about 3-4 years ago and I replaced it with a 500gb hard drive.

    After being harassed by the automatic pop-ups from the Mac app store to upgrade the OS to Yosemite, I said hey , why not. Big mistake. My computer has become painfully slow and practically unusable.
    It takes about 3-4 minutes to open a safari page if its going to open at all.
    I mainly use this computer for school work when i'm home and want to get some usability from it again.

    Any recommendations? I don't know if replacing my HDD with an SSD - even if possible - will speed up my computer. Or , of course , downgrading back my OS to snow leopard but in doing so , i'd lose my data.

    Any recommendations?

    Thanks ,

  2. Weaselboy Moderator


    Staff Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    Yosemite might be a little bit slower than Snow Leopard, but no where near as bad as what you are describing. Has it been like this since the moment you installed Yosemite or was it later on?

    It may be that you have some utility or something running that is in conflict with Yosemite. Try this just to test... hold the shift ket at startup to boot to safe mode. That stops all launch and startup items from running. Does that help? If it does, then you have something running there that Yosemite does not like. Come back and let us know how it goes.
  3. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    An SSD will cure the slowness.

    If you don't want to go through the job of installing it, reverting back to the OS version you had installed BEFORE you upgraded to Yosemite should "get you back, get you back, get back to where you once belonged..."
  4. padams35 macrumors regular

    Nov 10, 2016
    How much RAM is installed? If you are still using the 1 or 2 GB that original shipped then that would also explain the slow down.
  5. macmee Suspended


    Dec 13, 2008
  6. elf69 macrumors 68020


    Jun 2, 2016
    Cornwall UK
    I have exact same imac.

    I have 4GB ram will go to 6GB soon.
    I run El Capitan and for most part is fast enough for my needs although an SSD is planned soon.

    I rarely get the beach ball but that's due to lack of ram.
  7. SoApple thread starter macrumors regular

    Sep 21, 2012
    Hey Weasel , thanks for your reply. If i recall correctly , it was slow right after the update. Will try booting into safe mode and update back.

    Yeah it's the original 1gb of ram. I guess i'll give it up an upgrade. Ram shouldnt be too expensive anyways.

    Will give that a shot.

    Thanks for all your replies :D
  8. kschendel macrumors 6502a

    Dec 9, 2014
    Yosemite wants more than 1 Gb memory. Maxing out the memory (6 Gb on that machine, I believe) will make it bearable, and replacing the hard drive with an SSD should get you at least another couple years out of the machine.
  9. barbu, Nov 22, 2016
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 22, 2016

    barbu macrumors 6502


    Jul 8, 2013
    OP, i have that same Mac and I will echo the others, some judicious upgrades can make that a perfectly viable machine even today. An inexpensive SSD (go with Samsung Evo 850) and 4 GB RAM will take you very far. I also upgraded the Airport with a Wifi/BT4 combo card to enable all the Handoff stuff, it was $20. So for around $150 you can squeeze out another year or three running El Cap.
  10. elf69 macrumors 68020


    Jun 2, 2016
    Cornwall UK
    Agree 1GB not enough that's why it slow.

    4GB and upgrade to el capitan and it good.
    In china £40 (well just under) gets you 4GB DDR2 which is getting expensive as old tech.

    I have 2x 2GB and it is usable and even play some games on it.

    With SSD and 6GB ram I think I get another 2-4 years from it before it too old to talk to new tech like new iphones/ipads.

    Ignore roadkill comments it is a great machine for it age.

    Plus im going to upgrade the CPU to 2.8GHz extreme then can hack it to run sierra.
    I have checked and the stock cooler will handle this cpu ok it is within thermal capacity.
    and only £40 for the CPU!
  11. MistrSynistr macrumors 6502a

    May 15, 2014
    I got my parents a 2008 iMac probably with almost the same specs as yours, put an SSD in it and it functions like a snappy, brand new computer. 4 gigs of RAM, using El Capitan.
  12. danfrumkin macrumors newbie

    Aug 1, 2011
    I had the same vintage iMac and used an external firewire enclosure with an SSD. This really sped things up, using the external drive as the boot disc. I eventually installed the drive internally, but it was already formatted and ready to go.

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