Is a clean install really worth it?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by mac-collector, Apr 10, 2012.

  1. mac-collector macrumors regular

    mac-collector

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2012
    Location:
    Europe
    #1
    Hello again.

    I have an 'old' machine, it shipped with Tiger. It's currently running Lion and I notice a significant performance degradation. I remember (and looking at old videos) that it would boot up much faster, open applications faster, etc.

    Some people talk about doing a clean install. I've never done that so I don't know if it will change anything or by how much. How much of a performance boost do you get?

    Another question is whether time machine "works" with a clean install. What's the point of doing a clean install if you put all the bits back into their place?

    Thank-you.
     
  2. John T, Apr 10, 2012
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2012

    John T macrumors 68020

    John T

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2006
    Location:
    UK.
    #2
    If, as you say you have an "old" machine, I wouldn't bother! Obviously a newer machine is going to be snappier. So what? Does it really matter? Remember that carrying out a genuine clean instal from the original installation discs with remove all your settings for email and the like. If you do a reinstall from Time Machine, it'll just return everything to to it's original place!

    There are many misconceptions regarding clean installs by verifying disc permissions, increasing RAM etc to pep up a sluggish machine, but possibly, in your case the HDD is getting near it's capacity which will surely slow things down. If you have something in the region of 80-90% of used space on your HDD, try to remove or archive any unnecessary files to another disc.
     
  3. Bear macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2002
    Location:
    Sol III - Terra
    #3
    Time Machine does work with a clean install.

    You selectively restore items from Time Machine. For instance I would not bother restoring and applications. I would do clean installs on those with the latest version.

    If you have done only OS upgrades from Tiger through various versions to Lion, it could be worth a clean install. This combined with not restoring applications from your Time Machine backup could help. I actually did a clean install going from Snow Leopard to Lion and then restored my data from my backup. It was rather easy and worked well.

    Since the machine has multiple disks apparently, to be clear you need 10 to 20 percent of the system disk free for best performance. Exactly how much depends on the size of the disk and to an extent, what you use the computer for. Other disks can generally need only 10% free, depending on what they're used for.
     
  4. mac-collector thread starter macrumors regular

    mac-collector

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2012
    Location:
    Europe
    #4
    Thank you all. I will try some other things before doing the clean install to see if they can speed it up.
     
  5. John T macrumors 68020

    John T

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2006
    Location:
    UK.
    #5
    Good job you spotted my error! Post now corrected!
     

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