Don't wait for Snow Leopard: Slim down, speed up a Mac now

You can get lean and fast computing with your current version of Mac OS X. Here's how.

  • The International pane in System Preferences (left) lets you choose the preferred languages for applications to use. You can manually remove language files from applications via the Languages section of the Get Info window (right) for each application.

  • Finding and removing duplicate files in iTunes and iPhoto can save disk space. Both iTunes and iPhoto provide basic duplicate detection features, as shown here, or you can use more advanced third-party apps for de-duplication.

  • Limiting the number of Login items, which launch as you log in and usually run in the background while you're working, can speed up OS X's initial log-in time as well as some of its overall performance.

  • Getting rid of unused fonts via the Font Book application included with Mac OS X provides both a performance and disk space benefit.

  • Disk Inventory X shows the sizes of files and folders using a graphical method called "treemaps," helping you identify large files and folders that could be deleted, moved to an external drive or archived.

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