I want to limit the entire macOS system's CPU usage. I don't mind if it slows down, but I just want to compromise some speed for temperature.

I searched for any programs that does this. The one that seems closest for my needs is AppPolice, but I think it can only do one at a time being a GUI app and cputhrottle doesn't work with SIP enabled.

So, is there a way or a program to do this systematically without disabling SIP ideally?

  • Are you on Apple Silicon or Intel mac? Also - which version of macOS might get you different options.
    – bmike
    Jul 10, 2021 at 15:48
  • 1
    Why is temperature a problem for you? Modern CPUs are designed to run hot (up to 90 or 100C) and be controlled by fan and CPU speed.
    – Gilby
    Jul 11, 2021 at 3:14
  • I think you should tell us more about the temperature problem. There may be other solutions that don't involve this method.
    – benwiggy
    Jul 11, 2021 at 12:27
  • You can set PL1/PL2 power profile. Use voltageshift
    – 1110101001
    May 8, 2022 at 22:11

1 Answer 1


I can think of at least 3 ways of slowing down the whole Mac.

Turbo Boost

Unless you have a very old Mac (or a very new M1), you can reduce temperatures by turning of Intel® Turbo Boost.

Try Turbo Boost Switcher. You will have to go through some hoops to get it running because it uses a kernel extension. The web site has the required instructions.

Boot arguments

An alternative is to disable some cores in the processor. Though I have not done it myself, you should be able to run this Terminal command (with a suitable number for running cores) and reboot:

sudo nvram boot-args="cpus=4"

Xcode Instruments

An easier way to control cores and threads is to use Xcode's Instruments which has the option to reduce the number of threads (used in a hyper-threaded cpu) or to turn off hyper-threading. It has this preference panel:

enter image description here

Even though it says "Active processor cores", this is really "Active processor hyper-threads" unless you disable what it calls "Hardware Multi-Threading".

  • I wonder if there is a percentage way of controlling.
    – soshimee
    Jul 11, 2021 at 1:49
  • @soshimee Percentage of what? Disabling some cores is a percentage reduction of available CPU (12.5% per core on an 8-core CPU). Turning off Turbo Boost is also a percentage reduction in maximum CPU speed.
    – Gilby
    Jul 11, 2021 at 3:13
  • It is a MacBook Air and it is low on storage, so I can't really install XCode. It also only has 2 cores. I meant the average percentage of all cpu cores.
    – soshimee
    Jul 13, 2021 at 6:42
  • @soshimee Turbo Boost Switcher stops the cores going at full speed. That is assuming the CPU has Intel Turbo Boost which it should have unless very old or very new. What MBA model?
    – Gilby
    Jul 13, 2021 at 9:15
  • There is also Volta volta.garymathews.com. I never used it and I am not confident that it is safe - so can't recommend it.
    – Gilby
    Jul 13, 2021 at 9:25

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .