I’m sure no expert; and I spend more time head-scratching and second-guessing than anything else. I use the O’Reilly books as a guide, but I notice there’s also a lot of witchcraft and guesses involved when you bore deeply down into the trouble-shooting areas of even those superb guides. I’ll explain in more detail what I did. As I said, my overall system response is now an order of magnitude faster, downright “snappy,” and the lagging in Scrivener went completely away.
As for Onyx 1.8.5, I used the “Maintenance” menu, with three sub-windows, “Permissions,” “Scripts,” and “Resets.” Under permissions, there are check boxes for Daily, Weekly and Monthly BSD standard maintenance scripts. Perform those. Then make a note to do them on a regular basis.
Under “Reset” there are several choices. I chose the Spotlight Index reset, and down lower, the “LaunchServices” database “reset” button to remove and rebuild links between documents and applications.
I didn’t use the “Optimize” menu item in the next window.
Under the main menu “Cleaning” item I selected the “Caches” button and checked all four caches to delete: Applications, Font, System, and Kernal. Do a logout/login after.
Note that there is an “Automation” main menu item to schedule and automate all these various actions on an on-going basis.
“Disk Utility” is pretty straight-forward and a much quicker way to verify/repair permissions.
“Finder” preferences are in (user)/Library/Preferences/com.apple.finder.plist
Drag that file out to the trash, and do a logout/login and a new prefs file will be rebuilt.
Something with Growl got corrupted; it was dumping “recovered” files in my trash; I removed it, did a continuing Spotlight search to find all its many scattered script and helper files, used the “show in Finder” function to go to and trash all those pieces.
Go to system preferences under the “apple” logo, choose “accounts” and select the “login items” and there will be a list of items and “hide” checkboxes beside them. This takes some head-scratching, to figure which are essential or not. Some were obvious, and some involved an educated guess. HIghlight ones to remove, and click the “—” box under the window. I assume you can put it back later with the “+” button. I got rid of a lot of “fluff” stuff this way that was not essential to my system.
After a clean login/logout, I tested Dropbox and Typeit4Me by alternately disabling and enabling them; they had no effect on performance. They are valuable tools.
I had installed Linotype FontExplorerX ver. 1.2.3 (the ‘free’ version) … I disabled it from autostarting with system startup. I absolutely do not use or miss it now. I’ve found it to be useful in some functions, but the “autodetect” and “font cache cleaning” functions are buggy on my system and I no longer trust it. I’ve used it to organize a huge font folder collection, and now can use the system’s “FontBook.app” to set up collections for specialized doc layout & publish work.
My understanding is that these font handling apps get themselves between the fonts and the apps and the on-screen display and if corrupted can raise havoc with the process.
The “International” prefs pane is odd. I unchecked the top “character palette” option; went all the way to the bottom of those long listings, and made sure only the “extended keyboard” option was checked.
That’s about all I can say. These systems have grown so complex and interrelated that I’m convinced nobody can anticipate or diagnose all the possible permutations and interactions between the various parts and pieces. When we start tossing in all the extra “neat stuff” we’re adding to the confusion. I’ve got all the O’Reilly books for OS-X “Tiger” and have studied them till my eyes are permanently crossed and glassy. I am reminded of the OS-9 days when we would spend endless hours trashing preferences and disabling extensions and control panel items until we found the rotten apple. It strikes me that OS-X is much more difficult, because it won’t crash like OS-9 did when it bites a rotten apple; OS-X just gets a stomach ache and complains, but it keeps going.
So, I repeat my earlier assertion: over time we keep piling crud on top of crud, and there’s also a certain amount of corruption of cache and preference files that occurs, so we need to hang it out on the back fence and beat hell out of it with a broom every spring to knock all the bugs and debris out of it … just like Mom had me do as a kid every spring with all the rag rugs.