What Happens After a Full Erase?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by shanshor, Dec 27, 2010.

  1. shanshor macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2008
    #1
    Hello everyone! I've had my iMac since early 2008 (2.8GHz, 4GB RAM, nice NVidia card) and it has ran great until recently. Things seem slow, and take a bit too long to open. Even worse is that its performance is inconsistent. Sometimes iTunes can take 6-8 seconds to load, and sometime 30 or more. I had concluded that this is due to my hard drive being almost full (320 gigs). However, I erased about 50GB of info, and it still performs about the same. The bump to Snow Leopard helped a bit, but the performance still isn't near where I'd like it to be. I also just installed 4GB of RAM.

    So a new idea is to just completely erase everything and start over. I have a time machine backup of all of my info, and I would selectively add old information to the newly formatted drive (things like movies, photos, apps). However I have two problems in doing a full erase (or whatever the technical term is)

    1) What happens to preferences and the such?

    I have my iPad and iPod touch synced to my iMac and I don't know how that would affect them after I tried to sync them after the erase. Also, if i load all of my photos back into iPhoto, will events and albums need to be reconfigured?

    2) What happens to my Windows Vista partition?

    I have a 30GB partition for Vista, and what would happen to it? Would OS X be smart enough to not touch it?


    Thanks for all of your help!
     
  2. shanshor thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2008
  3. Deomitrus macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2008
    #3
    1. A lot of preferences are saved in your home folder /Users/%your username%/Library. iPhoto pictures are also stored in your home folder /Users/$your username%/Photos (unless you saved them elsewhere). Same idea with iTunes music, by default your music libraries are stored in /Users/%your username%/Music.

    Actually, Time Machine will backup all this data for you. You can then use Time Machine to restore your entire system.

    See:
    http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?path=Mac/10.5/en/15638.html
    http://support.apple.com/kb/ht1427


    2. If you format the entire hard drive, you will wipe out your Windows partition as well. However if you format only the Mac OS X partition, your Windows partition will remain untouched.

    One way to increase startup performance, is to upgrade your hard drive to a Solid state drive. Check out Newegg.com for some prices on SSDs.

    Then you could use a free product like Carbon Copy Cloner to make an exact duplicate copy of old hard drive to your new drive. (Or re-install with Time Machine restore method mentioned above.)
     
  4. shanshor thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2008
    #4
    Thanks man, this helps a lot. I do have one more question though, it seems you are suggesting that I re"install" my whole home folder. Wouldn't this negate the effects of having cleared my hard drive? Or would I still see a performance boost?
     

Share This Page