Troubleshooting Software Problems

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A wide variety of software problems can occur while using your Mac. The causes are just as diverse, however a few techniques can fix a large number of problems.


Try the following and see after each step whether the problem still exists:

  1. Force quit the application if it is not responding
  2. Repair permissions
  3. Restart or log out then log in again
  4. Delete preferences files of troublesome applications
  5. Try creating a new user account and see if the problem still persists on that account. If so, you can either move to that user account or go back to your main one and use trial and error by moving files in and out of your Library folder until you can narrow down the cause of the problem to a single corrupt file (which can then be deleted).
  6. Run maintenance scripts
  7. Zap the PRAM
  8. If an application continues to make problems you might need to uninstall it

Specific Apps

See Also