Nuked my MBP and it feels great

Just felt my MBP slow over the weeks. Lots of CPU cycles being consumed and just didn’t feel right. Just took the drastic step of nuking it and then installing it from scratch and it feels like a brand new MBP and runs cooler now. Same set of applications at work and it’s just quieter and faster. I should do this probably every alternate year. :joy:


I remember when that was the SOP for Windows at work.


Intel or Apple Silicon? SSD or something else?

Intel 2020 MBP 16 inch.

And SSD 32 64 GB Ram

I’ve always heard that you shouldn’t have to do that with a Mac, but I did an annual “nuke and pave” with my Intel Macs and they always felt zippier afterwards. My M1 MBP is getting to be about a year old though, and I don’t feel the need to take that step (yet).


How old is your MBP?

My work installed all sort of security junks and it drags down the Macs, even my current M1 Pro, MBP 16”, supposedly state of the art. This never happens to my own personal Macs. All these enterprise no-good, paranoid software.

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For me I was not able to get Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom Classic, Acrobat Pro 2017 to work ever since I had upgraded to Ventura 13.3.1 Adobe support tried a lot and could not resolve. As expected put the blame on Mac OS. I have a personal M2 MBA and with Ventura 13.3.1 it works. So just to save the headache and also to start with a clean slate, I took the drastic step of nuke and pave. I think I will do this going forward with every major release of MacOS if not every 12-18 months. My data is always in the cloud plus backups, and I got nothing to loose.

This is my approach—I do a nuke and fresh install every other OS release, sooner if I’ve run into some significant problem.


Yeah that was the “fantasy” that the OS was smart enough to remove the carcasses of long gone applications. I’ve always noticed better performance after a Nuke and Pave. It’s like a remodeled home …it feels new


Read this article if you’d like to know why this makes little sense on a modern Mac with Apple Silicon. Even if you erase your data drive, you still have to be careful what files and folders you restore to it, otherwise you are back where you were. I’m looking at you Library folder! :slightly_smiling_face:

How To Clean Install macOS | 2022 - Macworld

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I always keep my data separate from the Library and Applications Folder. They are backed up and even if I reinstall/rebuild/nuke it, I will just point it to the data folder. A bit of tweaking settings. I will have to give it some time to let it rebuild the index or data fresh for some apps.

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Hmmm, I am tempted but scared :face_with_peeking_eye: Knowing me I will miss a vital step and end up losing something significant.

Do you know about the Library folder that is in your Home folder? It may be hidden. You’ll see it in the Finder on the Go Menu. You may even have to hold the OPTION key to see it.

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IMO a clean install never includes the Library.

Tip for anyone doing a clean install: Some Apps, like Arqbackup and Downie, etc only allow you to use your software license a limited number of times. Before you wipe your drive release/remove any application licenses like these.

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I did the same thing with my M2 MacBook Air last week and so far it’s been a success, I was getting constant popups about (the same) apps being added to my startup list. Things were feeling slow. I was also having random Wi-Fi disconnects. Started from scratch and I’m about a week in with none of those issues having returned.

For many years now, a clean install occurs for me only when I buy a new Mac. :slightly_smiling_face:

By the way, which Library folder are you talking about? I usually care only about the one in my Home folder. That seems to be where a lot of cruft accumulates. I generally ignore the Library folder at the root of my internal drive(/) and the one in the /System folder.

The one in my User Directory “aka Home folder”. “macOS Catalina or later runs in a read-only system volume, separate from other files on your Mac”.

I haven’t tried to change anything in /Library since Catalina but AFAIK the above statement is still correct.

I am still not clear in my mind what files exist on the Sealed System Volume and what goes on the writable Data volume (some folders are split across both), how the snapshot is built that is used to actually run macOS, or even how Apple manages to update one of these split volume systems (aka Monterey and Ventura on M1 and M2 or Intel with T2 chip). I liked it better when I could understand the structure of my disk drive and feel like I knew what was happening on my Mac. :slightly_smiling_face: