Forum Question: How Do I Reap the Benefits Of Software Updates Without Compromising My Device?

I have always installed software updates on all my Mac devices as soon as they were provided. And over the years have noticed a trend of decreasing speed and efficiencies following the installation of these updates, especially with the system updates on my MacBook Pro! Sadly, during a recent update install on this MacBook Pro (2010 model), it simply crashed half-way through the install and is now completely non-functional. Apple’s customer support advises that there is likely nothing much more they can do to repair it, at least not in a cost efficient way. And even if I agree to this costly service, there would be no guarantees of success “with my vintage unit”. Is there anything more a user should do or know before installing updates?
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Janice

Comments: 3 Responses to “How Do I Reap the Benefits Of Software Updates Without Compromising My Device?”

    6/10/18 @ 12:34 pm

    In some cases, sure, updates will seem to slow down you computer because new versions will use more graphics or simply do more than the older versions. I mean, if the new versions didn’t do more, then what would be the point? And asking older computers to do more will sometimes tax their abilities.

    But on the other hand, new versions also offer optimizations that can speed up old computers. Sometimes is it a mix of things that slow old computers down and things that speed them up.

    One thing is for sure. Without updates, you can’t get the new features, of course.

    For people like me, who use their computing devices to make a living, it is always justifiable to keep hardware and software updated. I never run into situations where I’m trying up date a 2010 Mac to use 2017 software. But if you are using your Mac as a home computer or for hobbies, it is tough to justify the cost of a new machine every 2-4 years.

    So what I’m saying is that it is a subjective choice. For some, running into issues with a 2010 Mac will mean trying to fix it. For others, it means it is past due time for a new machine. It all depends on you and what you use your Mac for and how.

    Another thing that happens is older hardware breaks down and slows down. A hard drive may have lots of bad sectors and a battery can’t hold much of a charge, and the cooling system wears down so the processor runs hotter, etc. These this happen over the years as we also update our software. But it is easy to blame the software updates because we saw those happen, while we didn’t see the hardware decline.

    Also, keep in mind that not everything is under your control. The websites you have visited for years have slowly gotten more complex and more demanding on your processor. So if going to example.com today seems slower than 5 years ago, it could just be that the designers of that site now target 2016-era computers and not 2008-era computers like when you first bought your Mac.

    Have you brought your Mac into the Genius Bar (I assume you just called before). Have you taken it to another expert? If the Mac is completely un-bootable, then have you tried to go into recovery mode and re-install the system, etc?

    Janice
    6/11/18 @ 1:26 pm

    I did consider taking it in but had understood that there would be service charges and no guarantee of success? Would the Genius Bar at least take a preliminary look at it before I would have to commit to the costly service?

    6/11/18 @ 2:09 pm

    Janice: The Genius Bar is free. Doesn’t matter if you even have AppleCare or not. But if want them to do a repair or such, then they will tell you how much it will cost, etc. But just to go in and talk to them and show them the problem, and get advice and even some technical trouble-shooting, is free.

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