Cocktail is a Mac maintenance utility that performs many cleanup tasks. It’s easy to use, and we strongly recommend it to every Mac user. It will speed up your Mac, correct fonts that are not displaying properly, files that display the wrong icons, and many other performance issues.

Download Cocktail at http://www.maintain.se/cocktail/.

Each major version of MacOS has a corresponding version of Cocktail. Click to download the correct version of Cocktail for the version of MacOS you’re using…and if you upgrade to the next major version of MacOS, download the version of Cocktail for that a version.

Cocktail Web Site Window

Cocktail Web Site Window

Once you’ve downloaded Cocktail, here’s how to configure and run it. Note that each version is slightly different, so the windows you see may not exactly match the pictures here…but they will be similar. The pictures here are from the High Sierra version.

1. Launch Cocktail. (Mac OS X will ask for your password.) Enter it and click the OK button. You’ll arrive at Cocktail’s main window. Click the System button at the top of the window.

Cocktail Main Window...Click the System button

2. Int the System window, click the Databases tab at the top.

System Window...Click the Databases tab

3. In the Databases window, work from the bottom up, and do things one at a time. Wait for each step to finish before going to the next.

  • Click the bottom Update button in the row that says Update locate database. Rebuilding may take a couple of minutes. Be patient.
  • Change the menu in that same row from locate to WHATIS, then the Update button in that same row again.
  • If you use Apple Mail, click the Rebuild button in the row that says Rebuild Mail’s Envelope Index.
  • Click the Rebuild button in the row that says Rebuild Help database.
  • Make sure the box for Restore default file associations if clicked, then click the Rebuild button in the row that says Rebuild Launch Services database.

4. In later versions of MacOS, once the Launch Service database has been rebuilt, you’ll see a window asking if you want to reboot your Mac. Click the Cancel button, then click on the Pilot button at the top of the window.

5. Configure the Pilot. This takes place in several windows.

  • Starting in the main Pilot window, make sure all the boxes circled in red in the illustration below are clicked. Set the popup menu for Play completion sound to any sound you prefer. Set the popup menu for Automatically to Restart.

 3. Once all the circled boxes are clicked, click the upper Options… button (marked Options 1 in the illustration). A new window appears that has three tabs at the top, System, User, and Internet.
In the System pane, make sure that all the boxes are clicked. Depending on which version of Cocktail you’re using, your window may have additional boxes, or fewer boxes compared with the illustration. Just make sure all the boxes in this pane are clicked.

4. Click on the User tab. In the User pane, there are two columns of boxes…the left column cleans caches only for your user account, the right column cleans them for all user accounts on this Mac. Click all the boxes in the right column.

5. Click the Internet tab. Like the User pane, click all the boxes in the right column except for the Cookies and Form values boxes. Also click the boxes for each of the other browsers so you clear the caches for them too.

6. Click the Applications button. Note that early versions of Cocktail may not have an Applications button…if so, just skip this step. Like in the earlier windows, click all the boxes in the right column. Now click the OK button to go back to the original Pilot window.

6. Your back to the Cocktail’s Pilot window. Click the lower Options… button (marked Options 2 in the illustration).

7. This takes you to the Logs window. At lower right corner of this window are two columns of boxes similar to those in the User and Internet panes. Click all the boxes in the right column (circled in red in the illustration). Depending on which version of Cocktail you’re using, your window may have additional boxes, or fewer boxes compared with the illustration. Just make sure all the boxes in the right column are clicked. Then click the OK button.

8. You’re back to the Pilot window, and Cocktail is now configured. It will remember your configuration, so you won’t have to do that again. To run all the maintenance procedures, just click the Run button. Cocktail will go through all the maintenance procedures you configured, then restart your Mac when it’s done. After that you can use your Mac normally.

Next time, launch Cocktail, click the Pilot button, then click the Run button, wait for the restart, and use your Mac.