I'm going to install Linux Mint virtual machine and work primarily through there.

I want to shut off any and all eye candy on Mac to squeeze out every last bit of performance I can. Akin to "Set for best performance" setting on Windows 7.

Turn off visual effects

If Windows is running slowly, you can speed it up by disabling some of its visual effects. It comes down to appearance versus performance. Would you rather have Windows run faster or look prettier? If your PC is fast enough, you don't have to make this tradeoff, but if your computer is just barely powerful enough for Windows 7, it can be useful to scale back on the visual bells and whistles.

You can choose which visual effects to turn off, one by one, or you can let Windows choose for you. There are 20 visual effects you can control, such as the transparent glass look, the way menus open or close, and whether shadows are displayed.

To adjust all visual effects for best performance:

Open Performance Information and Tools by clicking the Start button , and then clicking Control Panel. In the search box, type Performance Information and Tools, and then, in the list of results, click Performance Information and Tools.

Click Adjust visual effects. If you're prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.

Click the Visual Effects tab, click Adjust for best performance, and then click OK. (For a less drastic option, select Let Windows choose what’s best for my computer.)

How can I do something similar on Mac OS X 10.6.8?

  • 4
    If you want to work primarily through Mint, you might as well run Mint directly.
    – houbysoft
    Commented Aug 17, 2012 at 15:59
  • Agreed, this is silly.
    – Alexander
    Commented Aug 17, 2012 at 18:52

2 Answers 2


You can use applications such as Onyx or Tinkertool to minimize the amount of effects that are displayed on OS X. OS X does not have a built in function to disable graphics like Windows does.


Here are some apps, some free and some paid, that can be used to disable or change the behavior of various features. All of these products provide a graphical user interface that (in most cases) works by issuing a Terminal command called defaults write to create custom preference files that enable or disable or provide parameters for features that are inaccessible via the Mac OS X user interface.

If you want to use the Terminal to create your own defaults write preferences, there have been a lot of posts about that here on Ask Different. The advantage of several of these utilities is that they provide you a list of what tweaks are possible, and also give you a convenient way of reversing the changes if you don't like the results.

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