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How to handle a freezing MAC system
How to handle a freezing MAC system

What should you do if your MAC system is hanged

Mini Chaturvedi avatar
Written by Mini Chaturvedi
Updated over a week ago

Your MAC system may slow down or stuck up especially while sharing the screen, due to various reasons. Maybe because of too many opened apps or browser tabs, or sometimes because of heavy apps like Snap Camera which people are using nowadays to apply virtual backgrounds or lots of background app clutter..

Other times, macOS may hang up while you surf the Internet via a web browser like Safari, Chrome, Firefox, etc or the computer runs out of memory and it has to use the disk instead of RAM.

You can use iStats Menus to check real-time memory usage and other key performance metrics of your Mac. It’s also an app we recommend for diagnosing Mac issues.

iStat Menus is an easy yet advanced system monitor for Mac

How to unfreeze your Mac under different scenarios

1. Your Mac Freezes Randomly

If your Mac freezes from time to time even if it’s not running any third-party apps at all, or you feel there’s always a delay in responding on certain requests, it’s possible your Mac startup disk is almost full.

How to fix: Clean up disk drive, reset SMC

The best way to clean up Mac drive is to use CleanMyMac, an incredibly simple and intelligent app that can help you detect all type of system junk and unnecessary files. By doing so, you can quickly free up gigabytes of disk space.

As for resetting SMC, just follow the step-by-step instructions from this Apple guide.

2. Mac Freezes When Open Certain Apps

It’s quite common that Mac freezes on certain apps, especially those poorly developed ones which require substantial system resources than they should.

This happens more often while you are using heavy apps like image or video editing software that demands more system resources than other light-weighted apps.

How to fix: Force quit, and keep the app up to date

The first yet no-brainer solution is: keep waiting until the app unfreezes by itself. If it’s still unresponsive after a few minutes, try force quit the application.

To do this, move your cursor to the application icon on the dock (normally located at the bottom of your screen).

Then right click on the app icon. Wait until a pop-up menu displays. macOS will then present the option for you to “Quite.”

Alternatively, you can click on the Apple logo, select Force Quit, then highlight the app you want to exit, and hit the blue “Force Quit” button.

Next, check whether the app has a newer version. For example, if you are using Photoshop, go to Adobe’s official website to see if the version you’re using is the latest.

Those of you who are used to download programs from the Mac App Store, you can also go to Software Update to check if there’s a new update.

Always keep your apps up-to-update because a newer version usually fixes bugs and errors that could eliminate app frozen times.

3. Web Browser Keeps Freezing on Mac

According to Apple Support Community threads, some users have been experiencing difficulties with Safari after updating their Macs to the latest macOS, such as web browser crashes or keeps freezing.

How to fix: Remove the third-party extensions

First remove the third-party extensions you recently installed. Because those plug-ins/extensions might be incompatible with the web browser you use. Open Safari, on the top click Safari Menu, select Preferences.

Under the Extensions tab, select and uninstall the ones you recently installed.

If that doesn’t solve the problem, you’ll need to reset Safari. It’s also quite simple. This video tutorial shows how:

If the web browser continues to freeze, we’d recommend a full macOS check-up and update. Make sure to back up your data before you do this. Updating macOS is a fairly simple process. Simply click on the Apple logo, then App Store option, you’ll see the number of updates available.

Once updated, it should fix the browser keeps freezing issues and prevent your Mac from other issues in the future.

4. Mac Keeps Freezing on Startup

If your Mac often freezes upon startup, chances are you have excessive login items or launch agents. Those are applications, services, or server connections that run automatically when your Mac starts.

Another possible cause is the Non-Volatile Random-Access Memory (NVRAM) issue, as Apple puts in :this article

“…if your Mac starts up from a disk other than the one selected in Startup Disk preferences, or a question mark icon briefly appears before your Mac starts up, you might need to reset NVRAM.”

How to fix: Optimize login items and reset NVRAM

Disabling unnecessary startup items is simple, just do a Spotlight search for “Users & Groups” (alternatively, click on the Apple icon, then System Preferences, click on Users & Groups).

See the Login Items tab next to Password? Here you’ll find a list of applications and auto-start programs, feel free to remove those you rarely use.

Note: There may be some launch agents that do not show under Login Items, but they still run on startup. You can disable or remove them in (via Extensions > Launch Agents, as shown below).

Resetting NVRAM is easy and risk-free. Simply shut down your Mac and press the four combination keys as shown in .this video guide

5. Mac Is Frozen Completely

If the entire system of your Mac frozen and you can’t even move the cursor around. Your last option is to force reboot the Mac manually.

If you are on a MacBook Pro or MacBook Air, hold down the Power button (located on the keyboard for newer MacBooks) for 5 seconds or so, until the system shuts down completely.

Then press it again to start.

If you are on an iMac or Mac Mini, ​the Power button is on the back of the monitor. Similarly, press it for a few seconds and release it when your Mac shuts down.

Note: Don’t forget to back up your Mac data on a regular basis. Because when your Mac is totally frozen you’ll have to force quit apps or reboot, during the process you may lose some files due to not being saved in time.

A backup is the best protection plan for data disasters.

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