Late 2011 model, A1278 / 2.4 GHz i5 or 2.8 GHz i7 processor.

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Is there a way to test for sluggishness?

I have been working on a MacBook Pro, Late 2011, MD314, A1278. It has the Intel i7 2.8GHz processor, 8GB of memory, and a 750 GB HDD. It runs OS X Yosemite. However, I have had reports of sluggishness; slow response upon opening applications, slow to access files, and dealing with settings.

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Thank you all for your answers. Just a little more info. So the computer was wiped clean (erased, erased free space, reformatted, and then OS X Yosemite reinstalled). Then around 700 GB of data was migrated to the computer. That fills up almost all of the space available, since it is a 750 GB HDD. Do you all think this is too much on the computer or something else?

i am sure that your computer have a bad hard drive and cable. if you want to make sure, you can download something call smart utility. if you mark my answer as chosen i would send it to you.

Good Luck!

Hey everyone! Thank you for the answers. I understand about the hard drive, the cable, and repairing the permissions. However, how much of the problem do you think is putting too much data on the computer?

Go Q! I don't have an easy answer here ;-{ The issues is not so much as too many files, but the constant deletion and adding of new files creates a 'churning effect' this is where the OS needs to finds areas within the disk to place the new or altered file. The more free space you have (1/4 ~ 1/3 as I recommend) allows the OS to be more effective in the files placement, but even then there is only so much the OS can do as over time. The areas available tend to be more and more fragmented and this is what slows your system. Upgrading Apps & OS's also tend to make things worse. As a good habit I recommend one defrays a HD once a year and more often if you do a lot of file churning.


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Sounds like your system needs some TLC. Overtime the drive builds up junk & gets fragmented both sap performance, Here's what I would do:

Start off by clearing out the old log and cache files which build up over time. There are a few apps that will work here here's one on the App Store: Disk Cleaner Pro.

The next thing on our list is to create a bootable external disk (HD or USB thumb drive) then boot up under it so you can run Disk Utility from it to repair the internal drives permissions & disk. Do make a backup before you do this just incase!

Then next thing here is to free up 1/4 to 1/3 of space on your drive. once done you'll need to defragment the drive. I use Drive Genius there are others.

After you defrag the drive you should see a lot more zip!


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This model had a lot of issues with the HD/IR cable failing. If doing everything Dan said to do, you are still getting a lot of beachball action, replace the cable with the 2012 model cable.


To full a hard drive can create dramatic problems. Click on the drive once, then go under file to get info and tell us how full it is.


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Thanks Mayer! I forgot to add the cable issue!


I just had the same issue on my late 2011 15" yosemite.

It was extremely sluggish - felt like I was screen sharing.

Repaired permissions, checked RAM usage, all was in order.

I switched users and the problem disappeared! My tech told me there's a way to fix a user without deleting it, but I didn't bother. I just deleted the bad user account, as I had nothing I needed to salvage.


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@Design - That supports the issue of buildup junk in the users account (logs & cache files) as I too have used that method to see if the issue was. Good tip!


Repair permission, if that doesnt work replace hard drive and hard drive cable.

i would recommend upgrading to SSD


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@Sunny - See how Mayer added something I forgot. Thats a good answer. Did you read what I had posted? Did I not have the point of repairing the permissions. So why are you adding this again. As to your point of the SSD, yes thats a good point here it could make sense! But, again think of the costs and review the age of the system. Sometimes its not worth doing as the same amount of storage is too costly of an investment. This is were a 1/2 step maybe a better answer when going with a SSHD hybrid drive (Seagate or a Western Digital Black2) At a lower cost the system gains the performance of the SSD but not the costs, and still hangs onto the deep storage of a HD. Granted, its not quite as fast as an SSD but very close.

@Sunny - If you want to be supportive to an answer you can always add a comment stating you agree or even state why you don't. Just be sure to back it up with something like an Apple TN or other source link. That will get you respect and points!

Most of the time I would have just posted an addendum to Dan's answer, but on this occasion, I felt the cable was probably the actual issues so I posted it as an answer and gave Dan's excellent answer acknowledgement. If you agree with an answer, just upvote it, minor corrections or additions should be left as comments. Reiterating previously given answers makes you look like someone trying to garner points on someone else answers.



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