Mac OS 9 Discussion > Mac OS 9, Hacks & Upgrades

Extensions, Control Panels, and General Tweaks for a Mac OS 9 D.A.W.

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Let's make an active topic about minimal extensions needed for every DAW.   ;)
It is know that a system with less extensions boots faster and runs faster. Let´s get rid of garbage!
For example, one ati user should take off Nvidia extensions.
If you are not using a Iomega Superdisk or a Rio Mp3...
It also could be interesting to compare DAE versions with DSI(?) for swingers  ;D  (maybe too much Protools biased)
Also in some extensions the latest is not the more stable one.
There was some talk about firewire extensions, but it is open to CarbonLib version prefered (on a particular DAW setup)

DieHard say what not to use and MacTron what he uses both approaches are cool!

I use to keep a very small amount of system extensions in my Macs, but this may be a complex topic because each hardware/software combination needs his own combination of system extensions and, furthermore some are dependant of others.

Apple Audio Extension by example is needed in MDD but no in Sawtoth. Sound Manager is needed for QuickTime 6, which also need OpenTransport (I think).
I use to start with empty extensions folder and I go adding extensions as hardware and software require it. To keep the things more clean, I use to put most of the shared libs on the folder of the app that uses it  (if is possible).
This is what I use to have on the extensions folder:

Network related extensions:
Apple Enet 2.4.5, AppleShare 3.9.4, Open Transport 2.8.3, Open Transport ASLM Modules 2.8.3, Shared Library Manager PPC 2.0.2, Internet Config Extension 2.0.7

USB/FireWire related extensions:
FireWire Enabler 2.8.7, FireWire Support 2.8.7, HID Library 1.5.9, USB Device Extension 1.5.9

QuickTime And Sound Manager related extensions:
Apple Audio Extension 2.4, Sound Manager 3.7.1, QuickTime Extensions, QuickTime 6.0.3, QuickTime Musical Instruments 6.0.2, QuickTime  PowerPlug 6.0.3

OpenG related extensions:
OpenGLEngine 1.2.4, OpenGLLibrary 1.2.5, OpenGLMemory 1.2.4, OpenGLRenderer 1.2.4, OpenGLUtility 1.2.4

Video card related extensions:
NVIDIA 2D Acceleration 3.5.2, NVIDIA Drive 3.5.2, NVIDIA DVD Accelerator 3.5.2, NVIDIA Engine 3.5.2, NVIDIA OpenGL 3.5.2, NVIDIA Video Accelerator 3.5.2

Other Extensions:
DrawSprocketLib 1.7.8, InputSprocket Extension 1.7.3, Time Synchronizer 8.3.3, Contextual Menu Extension 1.0.2, Joliet Volume Access 2.1b5,
Text Encoding Converter 1.6, Apple CD/DVD Driver 1.4.8, DVD Region Manager 1.1, CarbonLib 1.6.1, Multiprocessing

Control Panels:
Joliet Control 2.1b5,USB Overdrive 1.4,Appearance 1.1.4,Date & Time 8.3.3, Energy Saver 3.0.5,File Exchange 3.0.5, General Controls 8.0.3, Internet 1.0.3, Keyboard 8.6.2,Memory 8.1.3,Monitors 7.5.6, Numbers7.1,QuickTime Settings 6.0.2, Sound      8.5.8, Startup Disk 9.2.6,TCP/IP 2.5,Text  8.0

As I am a "Cubase only guy" In my system there isn't a lot of DAW related extensions, Rewire is usually in the trash can (I never liked it), OMS is optional in cubase (I never liked it, too) as Cubase can handle the serial ports for MIDI by it self.

Edited to add version numbers as requested by Protools5LEGuy. Control Panels also  added.

I will not explain the function of every control panel and extension here, you can google something if you are curious or use this as a quick start guide and take the advice on pure faith...


- Memory ControlPanel
From the Apple Menu, choose the “Control Panels” pop-up, and click MEMORY
Turn Virtual Memory OFF
Be Sure RAM DISK is OFF.

- Energy Saver Control Panel
From the Apple Menu, choose the “Control Panels” pop-up, and click ENERGY SAVER
In the SLEEP SETUP page, set “Put the system to sleep” at NEVER.
(It is also recommended that the SLEEP command not be used from the "Special" menu)

- Disable Appletalk
From the Apple Menu, click CHOOSER
Click INACTIVE in next to the Appletalk option at the bottom right corner of the window.

- Disable Font Smoothing
From the Apple Menu, choose the “Control Panels” pop-up, and click APPEARANCE
Click the FONTS tab inside the Appearance window.
Disable the option “SMOOTH ALL FONTS”

2) VIDEO CARD INFORMATION (needed for later on)
From the Apple Menu, click "Apple System Profiler"
Select the Second Tab at the top "Devices and Volumes"
Under the PCI, Slot-1, AGP section, click the blue triangle to the left of "Display Card" to open the Video card info. write down the card Manufacturer

Trim your Extensions & Controls Panels to help performance and prevent possible extension conflicts; if you are a Newbie to OS 9, when in doubt, don't turn off an extension unless you are sure you don't need it, the amount of RAM saved is not worth the headache you are going to have if you inadvertently turned off something you need and don't realize it...if you want to experiment, you can use this guide first as a baseline and then pick "Duplicate Set" and try variations of your initial modified setup, that way, you can easily switch back if you make a mistake

From the Apple Menu, choose the “Control Panels” pop-up, and click EXTENSIONS MANAGER..
Click “Duplicate Set” at the bottom right corner of the Extensions Manager window. Name the duplicate set when prompted… something like "Recording Studio Mac" or your name as an Artist or Production Company

Sort First... it will make the below list much easier !
Click on the word "Package" at the top of the Package column to immediate sort the Control Panels and Extensions, this will immediately give you a bird's eye view of which packages belong together

- Control Panels to turn off

If you don't intend on using a dial-up telephone modem..
Remove the X from
     Remote Access

Also, Remove the X from
     Location Manager
     Multiple Users (assuming you are the only user, you better be, don'y let anyone use your Music Mac)
     Software Update
     USB Printer Sharing (who likes to share anyway)
     Web Sharing

- Extensions to turn off

If you don't have an Airport Wireless Card Installed...
Remove the X from
     Airport AP
     Airport AP Support
     Airport Driver

If you don't access your Mac remotely...
Remove the X from
     OpenTpt Remote Access
     OpenTpt Serial Arbitrator
     Remote Only

If you don't Voice Control your Mac...
Remove the X from
     Speech Recognition

If you use iTunes, but don't own a Nomad, SoundSpace, or Rio (I don't think you own any of these)...
Remove the X from
     Nomad II USB Driver
     Nomad MG USB Driver
     Nomad USB shim
     NomadJukeboxLib Driver
     USBSoundSpace2 Driver

To turn off hard drive file indexing (trust me, you want it off)
Remove the X from
     FBC Indexing Scheduler

No Zip or Jaz drive ?
Remove the X from
     Iomega Drive

Some to trust me on... unless you know otherwise
Remove the X from
     Location Manager Extension
     Multi-User Startup
     Serial Tool
     Software Update Engine
     Software Update Scheduler
     Voice Verification
     VT102 Tool
     XMODEM Tool
     Web Sharing Extension
     Setup Assistant API
     Setup Assistant Launcher
     Setup Info Dispatcher
     Setup Internet Support
     Setup Modem Selector

To turn off un-needed video extensions (remember you found out your video card in Step 2
If you have an nVidia Card
Remove the X from
     All Extensions with "ATI" in them

If you have an ATI Card
Remove the X from
     All Extensions with "nVidia" in them

After an Initial Mac OS 9 Install navigate to the Extensions folder in the System Folder, select all the files (hold down Command/Apple and press 'A'), and label them with a color. This way, any third-party extensions added subsequently are easy to spot since they will appear with a different color to the original set and these colours will be visible in Extensions Manager!.  Remember to load your mac up to 1 GB of RAM and allocate to the Host DAW Application as much as possible (Get info, Command-I on the Application, switch to "Memory" and set both memory values to 400,000 or more for your main Application if it hosts many plugins).

great info here.. thanks for adding ;) i will see about testing these settings for improved performance on my machines shortly!

If you don't access your Mac remotely...
Remove the X from
     OpenTpt Remote Access
     OpenTpt Serial Arbitrator
     Remote Only

If you use Recycle up to version 1.x - 2.0 for macos 8.6-9.2.2 one of these Open Transport extensions is needed... not quite sure which one - I'll have to make the error happen again(after almost 14 years).


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