the AHA! moment...


i have just realized that i know next to nothing about my mac. or any mac. or any pc.. or toasters for that matter. ok, toasters i understand..sort of.

i have a mac G3, 350 MHz, i've put as much memory in as is possible, running on OS X and my poor mac needs help. it's slow and it's "startup disk is almost full" and i have no idea how to help it any further. i just ran Disk Warrior and it say's there are no major problems, looked online for solutions.. alas.. nothing helps.

what i'm wondering is: does anyone have a recommendation on a good 'Mac help' book for me (remember those paper things with the words printed on the pages?)? i need basic understanding, but preferrably something under three zillion pages.



Scratch & Sniff Committee
"Mac OS X: The Missing Manual" is pretty good.

As for the issue you're having, the message "startup disk is almost full" means that you are running out of space on the hard drive. You'll need to get rid of some files to make room, perhaps by deleting, or moving stuff to a CD or to another drive or server. Focus on getting rid of movies first (they use the most space) then music, then photos.

You can always find out how much space you actually have on the drive by clicking the hard drive's icon on the desktop (if you haven't renamed it, it'll be "Macintosh HD") and pressing Apple+I to bring up the info for that drive.


A nice trick to recover disk space is to uninstall/delete unwanted language files. These files enable you to have the interface in another language, but most users just use one language and stick with that. You can delete all the unwanted language files, but you should keep english, as that sometimes is the only interface available. There are two utilities to do this, called Monolingual and Delocalizer.

Also Omni DiskSweeper can help you find big files or folders which you might want to delete or store elsewhere.

All of the above are free utilities, use at your own risk. Good luck!


Notorious Olive Counter
If you open the drive in list view, sort by size, and then go into "view options" and click on "calculate all sizes", then you can quickly see where most of the disk space is used up.

Lt Major Burns

"Dicky" Charlteston-Burns
to quickly clarify, macs need at least 10% (if not 15%) free disk space to run well. any less, and the problems you are experiencing crop up.