• Welcome to the new Mac-Forums. See News and Community Announcements for more details.

And another very slow Mac Mini

Joined
May 26, 2020
Messages
5
Reaction score
0
Points
1
My Mini (2014) takes for ever to boot up, at least 20 minutes before I can use it. It’s just an admin machine, no games, videos etc.
When it’s up to speed it’s fine all day long, I’ve even started leaving in ‘sleep mode’ night and this means it’s running ok the next day.

Reading these forums, I will check my RAM and the activity monitor.

Anyone know what RAM the 2014 model comes with? And what OS version should I be using without upgrading the RAM?
 
Joined
May 21, 2012
Messages
7,823
Reaction score
139
Points
63
Location
13th state, U.S.A.
Your Mac's Specs
iPhone 11 iOS 13, 12.9" iPad Pro 1 iPadOS 13, Late 2014 Mac Mini macOS 10.15
If you click on the Apple Icon, and select "About This Mac", it will open a window with information about your Mac Mini. The 2014 Mini originally came with Yosemite (10.10). So it can run anything after that, up to and including Catalina (10.15). Post the information about your Mac, and we will try to help.

The biggest performance boost you can give your Mini would be an SSD upgrade. Here's a link with a step-by-step D-I-Y guide, Mac mini Late 2014 Hard Drive Replacement - iFixit Repair Guide. Review it and see if it's something you may want to try?
 
Joined
May 26, 2020
Messages
5
Reaction score
0
Points
1
If you click on the Apple Icon, and select "About This Mac", it will open a window with information about your Mac Mini. The 2014 Mini originally came with Yosemite (10.10). So it can run anything after that, up to and including Catalina (10.15). Post the information about your Mac, and we will try to help.

The biggest performance boost you can give your Mini would be an SSD upgrade. Here's a link with a step-by-step D-I-Y guide, Mac mini Late 2014 Hard Drive Replacement - iFixit Repair Guide. Review it and see if it's something you may want to try?
Hey, thanks for the quick reply, I’ll look into that and try posting the information here.
 
Joined
Feb 4, 2020
Messages
17
Reaction score
0
Points
1
I have the same model Mini. From what you have said, it doesn't sound like anything is wrong. Yes, it really is that slow. I only use mine as an iTunes server, so it's fine for that (just sitting and running iTunes 24/7 with a large library on an external disk). Some things are unbelievably slow, such as clicking on System Preferences. That can take as much as 40 seconds to open.

Mine had El Capitan pre-installed. Finally, I added an SSD and upgrade OS to macOS Mojave. That should help.
 
Joined
Feb 1, 2011
Messages
2,031
Reaction score
162
Points
63
Location
Sacramento, California
My Mini (2014) takes for ever to boot up, at least 20 minutes before I can use it....
When it’s up to speed it’s fine all day long,
So it sounds like your mini isn't slow at all...it's just slow to boot up.

I doubt if any of the recent advice that you've read here in these forums recently about slow running Macs is applicable to your situation.

My experience is that when a Mac is taking a ridiculously long time to boot up, but it is otherwise running just fine, the problem is usually that it is encountering an error of some type during the boot up process, that it then times out, and it doesn't actually resume the boot up process until it resets.

If your Mac is booting up with no unusual tones or error messages, your hardware, including your RAM, are likely just fine.

Temporarily turn off all logon items:
System Preferences --> Users & Groups --> Logon Items
Use the little "minus sign" box to delete each logon item one at a time.
You can also go to each app with a dot under it in the Dock, that is open after you startup, right click on it, and uncheck "Open At Login"
Restart your Mac and see if things are are better. If they are, you need to update the offending app.

Next is, when you shut down your Mac, a window will appear and one of the choices will be to "Reopen Windows When Logging Back In". Disable that.

Did you once have an external hard drive, or other network device, or other peripheral attached to your Mac, and now you don't have it attached anymore? It may be that your Mac is still expecting to connect to it on startup, and it times out while looking for it. Go into System Preferences, find the driver setting for that device, and delete it.

One or all, of the above should return your mini to booting as quickly as it did when new.

If it doesn't, let me know. At that point we should do a Hardware Test, and if that comes out clean, a clean re-install of your OS using Mac OS Recovery is probably in order.
 
Joined
May 26, 2020
Messages
5
Reaction score
0
Points
1
Thanks for the input, I have 4gb ram and running Catalina, it wasn't this slow when I first bought it, new.

- - - Updated - - -

I have the same model Mini. From what you have said, it doesn't sound like anything is wrong. Yes, it really is that slow. I only use mine as an iTunes server, so it's fine for that (just sitting and running iTunes 24/7 with a large library on an external disk). Some things are unbelievably slow, such as clicking on System Preferences. That can take as much as 40 seconds to open.

Mine had El Capitan pre-installed. Finally, I added an SSD and upgrade OS to macOS Mojave. That should help.
Thanks for the input, I have 4gb ram and running Catalina, it wasn't this slow when I first bought it, new.
 
Joined
May 26, 2020
Messages
5
Reaction score
0
Points
1
Hey, thanks for the quick reply, I’ll look into that and try posting the information here.

System information attached. That DIY guide looks do-able.

Incidentally, why does a mac mini have an antenna ?

Screenshot 2020-05-27 at 09.41.15.png
 
Joined
May 26, 2020
Messages
5
Reaction score
0
Points
1
Thanks Randy, that sounds just like my problem. I'll try your tips today.

(never had an external hard drive. All I have connected are keyboard, mouse, printer, all connected by a single USB extender box.
 
Joined
May 21, 2012
Messages
7,823
Reaction score
139
Points
63
Location
13th state, U.S.A.
Your Mac's Specs
iPhone 11 iOS 13, 12.9" iPad Pro 1 iPadOS 13, Late 2014 Mac Mini macOS 10.15
The antenna is for Wi-Fi.
 

pigoo3

Well-known member
Staff member
Admin
Joined
May 20, 2008
Messages
41,984
Reaction score
668
Points
113
Location
U.S.
Your Mac's Specs
2011 17" MBP 2.2ghz, 16gig ram, OS 10.11.6
My Mini (2014) takes for ever to boot up, at least 20 minutes before I can use it. It’s just an admin machine, no games, videos etc.
When it’s up to speed it’s fine all day long, I’ve even started leaving in ‘sleep mode’ night and this means it’s running ok the next day.

Reading these forums, I will check my RAM and the activity monitor.

Anyone know what RAM the 2014 model comes with? And what OS version should I be using without upgrading the RAM?
I would not assume RAM to be the issue...in fact...the issue is probably not RAM at all...since the amount of installed RAM really doesn't have a big effect on boot times.

An area to investigate is the Mac-Mini's internal storage. Many 2014 Mac-Mini's came with an old style "spinner" HD. It's possible with a 6 year old 2014 Mac-Mini that the hard drive could be failing. A 2nd possibility is that the hard drive is getting way too full to operate efficiently.

You may also want to investigate if there's a software/OS issue (maybe there are some installed apps causing issues). To test this...create a new user account...then boot into that account. If the Mac- Mini boots much faster...could be due to a software/OS issue. If the Mac-Mini still boots slowly when booting into this brand new user account...then it could be a hardware issue (failing HD).

HTH,

- Nick
 
Joined
Feb 1, 2011
Messages
2,031
Reaction score
162
Points
63
Location
Sacramento, California
...An area to investigate is the Mac-Mini's internal storage. Many 2014 Mac-Mini's came with an old style "spinner" HD. It's possible with a 6 year old 2014 Mac-Mini that the hard drive could be failing. A 2nd possibility is that the hard drive is getting way too full to operate efficiently.
I really doubt that his hard drive is the problem. He says that it takes forever to boot up, but that it runs fine once it does. If the hard drive was failing, I'd expect his Mac to be really flaky for just about everything.

You may also want to investigate if there's a software/OS issue (maybe there are some installed apps causing issues). To test this...create a new user account...then boot into that account. If the Mac- Mini boots much faster...could be due to a software/OS issue. If the Mac-Mini still boots slowly when booting into this brand new user account...then it could be a hardware issue (failing HD).
That might be a good idea. Though it would only narrow things down to being a software problem, it wouldn't narrow it down to which software.
 

krs


Joined
Sep 16, 2008
Messages
1,717
Reaction score
36
Points
48
I wonder if this can be used as a rough reference about boot times on a Mini.

Mine is a basic late 2012 with a 2.5GB i5 processor.
With the original spinner drive, 500GB with 66GB free, boot to the blue screen is 80 seconds, at 125 seconds the full desktop has come (and my desktop is extremely busy) - this with El Capitan.
Same Mini with an external 500GB SSD boot drive (and 91GB free space, nothing deleted when migrating from El Capitan), boot to blue screen was 50 seconds, at 52 seconds the full desktop has come up.

I would think even with an older spinner drive, a full boot should normally not take any longer than 2 1/2 to 3 minutes
 

pigoo3

Well-known member
Staff member
Admin
Joined
May 20, 2008
Messages
41,984
Reaction score
668
Points
113
Location
U.S.
Your Mac's Specs
2011 17" MBP 2.2ghz, 16gig ram, OS 10.11.6
I really doubt that his hard drive is the problem. He says that it takes forever to boot up, but that it runs fine once it does. If the hard drive was failing, I'd expect his Mac to be really flaky for just about everything.

That might be a good idea. Though it would only narrow things down to being a software problem, it wouldn't narrow it down to which software.
Very possible it's not the HD...but never know. I like to provide both a hardware & software idea to troubleshoot if it's possible it could be either.:)

- Nick
 

chscag

Well-known member
Staff member
Admin
Joined
Jan 23, 2008
Messages
60,454
Reaction score
755
Points
113
Location
Keller, Texas
Your Mac's Specs
2017 27" iMac, 10.5" iPad Pro, iPhone 7+, iPhone 8, iPhone 11, Numerous iPods, Catalina
My Mini (2014) takes for ever to boot up, at least 20 minutes before I can use it. It’s just an admin machine, no games, videos etc.
When it’s up to speed it’s fine all day long, I’ve even started leaving in ‘sleep mode’ night and this means it’s running ok the next day.
Suggest downloading the free EtreCheck app from the Mac App store, run it and then copy and paste the readout here for us to look over.

EtreCheck on the Mac App Store
 
Joined
Oct 16, 2010
Messages
13,218
Reaction score
208
Points
63
Location
Brentwood Bay, BC, Canada
Suggest downloading the free EtreCheck app from the Mac App store,

I don't know if Apple has crippled EtreCheck.app as it seems to do with so many utilities available from the app store, and for that reason I prefer to download from the developer themselves.

In this case for EtreCheck:
EtreCheck

I don't know if Apple has in this case, but just saying...





- Patrick
======
 

chscag

Well-known member
Staff member
Admin
Joined
Jan 23, 2008
Messages
60,454
Reaction score
755
Points
113
Location
Keller, Texas
Your Mac's Specs
2017 27" iMac, 10.5" iPad Pro, iPhone 7+, iPhone 8, iPhone 11, Numerous iPods, Catalina
I don't know if Apple has crippled EtreCheck.app as it seems to do with so many utilities available from the app store, and for that reason I prefer to download from the developer themselves.
Nope. Same, same.

As a matter of fact, the developer himself (a Canadian citizen by the way) even has recommended downloading from the Mac App Store.
 
Joined
Oct 16, 2010
Messages
13,218
Reaction score
208
Points
63
Location
Brentwood Bay, BC, Canada
As a matter of fact, the developer himself (a Canadian citizen by the way) even has recommended downloading from the Mac App Store.

Hmmm... I was over at his site and came across this, but I got a rather opposite impression:
EtreCheckPro 6.0 has two important new features that are not available in the Mac App Store: the storage display and the analytics display. These are interactive displays that help you better manage your storage and review several days of detailed analytics information about your hardware, system, and running software.

Find out how your storage is being used Dive deep into analytics
The Mac App Store has technical limitations that prevent these features from working in EtreCheck downloaded from the Mac App Store. Therefore, these features are only available in EtreCheckPro.
EtreCheck: Upgrade to EtreCheckPro

To each their own I guess... But one does have to pay for the Pro version which may also be overkill for a lot of users.

There are more details at his site about the differences for those who are interested in checking.





- Patrick
======
 

chscag

Well-known member
Staff member
Admin
Joined
Jan 23, 2008
Messages
60,454
Reaction score
755
Points
113
Location
Keller, Texas
Your Mac's Specs
2017 27" iMac, 10.5" iPad Pro, iPhone 7+, iPhone 8, iPhone 11, Numerous iPods, Catalina
Patrick.... as usual you are off the beaten path. The important thing is that the OP show us what's going on with his Mini. EtreCheck is the right tool. And he doggone does not need the Pro version.
 
Top