Leopard running sluggish on MBP 17" even after clean install

Discussion in 'macOS' started by Nubben, May 21, 2008.

  1. Nubben macrumors regular


    Mar 17, 2005

    My MBP has felt sluggish for a long time and I performed several drive and hardware tests - no major problems and the minor ones were fixed (directory repairs etc by DiskWarrior).

    I even did a clean install after I had cloned the original install. After the clean install I dragged over the apps and prefs files etc.

    I have just come back from the local Apple Store/Genius Bar and they claim it's the old prefs files which are causing the sluggishness. Can that be right? Several of my friends just drag the User folder over from a previous install and their MBP's are not nearly as sluggish as mine.

    Especially Safari is extremely sluggish and sometimes while having only 5 or so tabs open it takes forever to close Safari and the beachballs keep appearing.

    Does someone have a clue what this can be?

    Many thanks.

  2. kolax macrumors G3

    Mar 20, 2007
    I'd recommend doing another clean install and starting fresh. Remember your settings, and manually adjust them.
  3. aaronw1986 macrumors 68030

    Oct 31, 2006
    What the Apple store said was exactly my first thought. It wasn't really a "clean" install since you copied things back. Try again and use the comp before copying things. Then you will know if it is some file/setting, or if something is truly wrong hardware wise.
  4. DerekS macrumors 6502

    Jun 25, 2007
    I had this problem with mine and it turned out to be the disk drive...it had reduced to one third it's original performance! (Verified by using XBench and comparing benchs from when I first bought it to current.)

    I yanked the drive and put in a 320GB Western Digital, and now it's fast again.

    BTW my 17 was purchased in Feb 07 and had a Hitachi HD.
  5. alecgold macrumors 65816


    Oct 11, 2007
    Though most likely the copied files and pefs are to blame, could you explain wath happend with the mbp? Was it a tiger which updated, did you import from previous ibook or powerbook. How much ram is on board? I got a colleagu who has had a macbook, bought a mbp with CD, got another one wit a C2D now updated to leopard and inbetween updated ms office to 2008.
    In his case a slow mbp and a whole load of errors messages and other annoying things got in the way. After a clean install, and not copying back from time-machine, but jus copying the word, excel files and all back, typing all his passwords etc by hand did a real miracle: he got a fine working mbp back!
  6. Nubben thread starter macrumors regular


    Mar 17, 2005
    Thanks all for your replies - much appreciated!

    The specs of the MBP are:

    2.33 ghz Core 2 Duo
    2GB RAM
    160GB disk (about 70GB left) Hitachi HTS541616J9SA00
    Some prefs are even from Tiger - note, only 3rd party apps prefs and data dragged over to my first install of Leopard in Nov 07). Dragged the same prefs over from the clone I had made before this latest clean install.

    The drive is also "purring" a lot - seems to read/write quite a bit when I use apps (while booting into XP on the BootCamp partition makes the drive run silently - go figure!).

    alecgold: So your friend did not transfer any prefs files etc?

    DerekS: Since I didn't do any bench tests when I first got it - is there a directory of drives to which I can compare mine?
  7. thejadedmonkey macrumors 604


    May 28, 2005
    Did you let spotlight finish indexing the drive?
  8. Nubben thread starter macrumors regular


    Mar 17, 2005
    Sorry, what do you mean? The clone drive or the new clean install internal drive? Do not quite follow.

  9. DerekS macrumors 6502

    Jun 25, 2007
    Sure - your specs are the same as mine, so it should come out fine.

    This link is my machine when new compared to when it started getting slow. Note how much the HD speeds dropped!


    And here's the before/after with the drive upgrade:


    Run XBench and compare yourself to those results.

    NOTE: The db appears to be down at the moment at xbench.com so these links may not work immediately.
  10. schuey100 macrumors newbie

    Jul 16, 2002
    Don't forget that XBench is not the most accurate of benchmarking apps. It may be the best there is for the Mac but it leaves a lot to be desired. Is it even universal? I'm sure the app died around 2005/06. As far is I know it doesn't recognize DPs either? I gave up on it when it scored a Cube 500 MHz higher than a new G4 1.42DP. The last time I looked at their database there were some very very odd results.

    I tend to do my own benchmarks now, generally with Photoshop and Logic Pro. Even though they're homemade I find it a bit more accurate.

    I think it's likely to be one of three things.

    You might have some dodgy preferences which is easily solvable. As everyone else has said, a 'clean' instal with manual settings will fix it.

    Second, you could be using an application/plug in/haxie that has a big memory leak or just doesn't like running in Rosetta or on the Mac period. It could even be a widget. I know that, for example, running MSFT 2004 Word/excel and Unrar at the same time will slow your computer to a crawl. The page in/page out rate goes bananas.

    Third, and kinda linked to two, it could be that you're messing around with a lot of bloatware and bloating the system with stuff you don't need and that comes from silly developers that don't know what they're doing. I know the answer to this :) But how many apps have you installed used and then deleted on this HDD? 500+ 1000+? :)
  11. ert3 macrumors 6502a


    Dec 10, 2007
    ACtually I had the same problem when I upgraded to leopard for the first time.

    Its because all of your app databases are being rebuilt.

    my first two days sucked but soon everything cleared up.

    of course i was moving from power-book g4 tiger to leopard and then to MBP leopard so maybe there is another variable

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