Some are new, some are tried and true, but some are ancient and maybe no longer being updated, yet we keep them around because there’s not another Mac app that does the same thing. Here’s my story about the problem with Mac startup apps.
Beam Me Up, Scotty
Your Mac has the capability to launch applications when the Mac first starts up. Open System Preferences, click on Users & Groups, click on your Username, and lick Login Items.
The Login Items tab reveals a list of applications, tools, and utilities that open automatically when the Mac starts up or reboots.
The idea behind Login Items is simple. Apps are ready to use when you sit down at the keyboard. Plus, you can add whatever apps you want to startup by clicking the Plus + sign below the Login Items.
All is good if there are not too many utilities or apps in the Login Items list. Unfortunately, OS X likes to launch everything at about the same time, which may slow down the startup, and have some utilities conflict with others.
Also, there’s no way to differentiate your location during startup, and no way to schedule specific apps or tools to startup at different times. Everything launches at once.
Startupizer is a Mac app that gives you granular controls over which apps startup and when and under what conditions.
Select the app you want to launch upon startup, then select various parameters and conditions for each one. That means you control which app launches when, and under what conditions by using a few rules. Apps can launch after every startup, or only on select days of the week, or at a specific time during the day, or, after x-number of minutes or seconds after the previous application launched.
Before I used Startupizer I used Calendar to launch and quit apps according to a schedule. While Calendar works well, setup is cumbersome at best. You’ll need an AppleScript to launch an app (or, quit an app according to a schedule; for example, just before an automatic shutdown).
Create a new Calendar, setup an event to launch an app; use the Custom setting to launch the AppleScript to launch the app you want, then set the time and date schedule, and Calendar does the work for you– and Calendar is free. It works as a scheduled app launcher, but it’s a pain to setup and administer while Startupizer has more options, specific controls, and it’s all in one app window (Calendar can get cluttered with too many app launches assigned as Events).