Parkinson’s Law says something to the effect that work expands to fill the time available. Similarly, Mac utilities seem to increase to fill available hard drive space.
At last count, I have over 100 additional, non-Apple, non-Microsoft, non-Adobe utilities that I seldom use. They’re good tools. Mrs. Gomez’s Six Month Rule™ applies. If you don’t use it within six months do you really need it? Here’s five of my favorite Mac tools that I do not need.
Don’t need? There’s a difference between wants and needs, right? I have plenty of Mac apps and utilities, even games, that I’m sure I haven’t used in a year or two, but I faithfully upgrade to new versions.
This morning I had an epiphany. Why not do without a few of these for awhile and see how it goes. Here’s my Top 5 Great Mac Tools You Really Don’t Need.
#5 – Stuffit Deluxe
This is a no brainer. Your Mac already has a couple of archive utilities built in, and there are a dozen others which enhance upon the .zip or disk image formats. Why use Stuffit Deluxe?
Seriously, it’s been at least a year, maybe two since I last used Stuffit Expander, let alone the Deluxe version. Sure, it creates excellent archives and is loaded with features, but if I don’t use it does that mean it’s not there?
Stuffit reduces file sizes and takes files and folders and plunks them into a reduced size archive. You know, just like the .zip archive built in to Mac OS X.
#4 – SeaMonkey
This is more symbolic than specific. How many browsers do you need on your Mac? There’s Safari and Firefox.
Some Mac users like Camino. Google’s Chrome will make a dent in Mac browser usage. But SeaMonkey? Mozilla’s official antique browser has been updated through the years. It’s one of few browsers which also edit HTML files, do email, IRC chat, newsgroups, and probably more.
The problem is that I just can’t find a need for SeaMonkey beyond sentiment. Back to the question: How many browsers does a Mac user really need?
#3 – Cocktail
I almost hate to put Cocktail on my list, so I’m going to call this one symbolic, too. It could be MacPilot, or Onyx, or any one of a dozen similar utilities that clean your Mac’s cache and unlock secret features.
Don’t misunderstand. Cocktail is an excellent Mac tool which helps keep your Mac running well by performing a variety of maintenance features, as well as opening a bunch of handy options. Have I used it in six months? Nope.
#2 – Retrospect
I’m a backup addict. My Mac is loaded with a dozen utilities which help me back up and restore my Mac, my files, my email, my music. The granddaddy backup utility I never use is Retrospect.
Out with the old, in with the new. Retrospect on my Mac was last used about two years ago, but lost favor to more handy utilities such as SuperDuper! and ChronoSync. Retrospect is a good choice for automating backup routines for a business; maybe even a small business. But I found it too convoluted and complex to adore.
#1 – Path Finder
Most Mac users know their way around the Finder in OS X. Love it or hate, the Finder works. Path Finder works better. It’s Power Finder. A Finder on performance enhancing drugs.
Path Finder is familiar; it looks and works like the Finder, but it’s a utility with more features than Democrats have disagreements; or, put another way, Path Finder has more options than a Heisman Trophy winner.
I love Path Finder. But all those extra features tend to get in the way unless you’re a power user who lives and breathes in the Finder all day. I love the dual panes. I cannot speak highly enough about the tabbed interface.
The problem here is the same as it is with a few dozen of my most cherished Mac tools, utilities, and apps—they just don’t get used. Or, not used often enough to remember all their features. If you don’t use it, should you keep storing it?
Obviously, this is a partial list. I have plenty more where these came from. Do you have a Mac tool that you just haven’t used in six months or a year? Share yours in the Comments section below.