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Fixit 18. Check for Problems with Extens... > Startup Extension Conflicts - Pg. 653

Check for Problems with Extensions and Control Panels (Startup Extensions) 653 Why to Do It: Some (but not all) of the extensions and control panels in your System Folder load into memory during the startup sequence. These files perform any number of (largely background) functions, such as placing a clock in your menubar or monitoring for virus infections or enabling file sharing. Apple includes many such extensions and control panels as part of its system software. Some are almost essential. Others, including many from third parties, are desirable because they greatly en- hance the capabilities of a bare-bones system. Whatever the case, we call them startup extensions. On the helpful side, icons for startup extensions typically appear along the bottom of the Mac OS screen as each startup extension loads into memory. By identifying the icons, you can get a sense of which extensions and control panels load at startup and which do not (though unfortunately not all startup extensions display these icons). Startup extensions, like any software, are subject to the general problems associated with software bugs or corrupted files. However, the two most specific problems associated with startup extensions are startup extension conflicts and startup extensions that do not load or run. TECHNICALLY SPEAKING -- Terminology: Startup Extensions vs. INITs Even though some startup extensions are control panels and even though not all extensions load into memory at startup, Apple generally refers to these programs simply as exten- sions. Is this confusing? You bet it is. To try to disentangle this, as described in Chapter 1 (see "Take Note: What's a Startup Extension?"), I typically refer to all of these special pro- grams as startup extensions . In previous editions of Sad Macs , I referred to these files by their more technical, but correct, name: INITs (where INIT is the file type of typical system extensions). However, except in a few cases (such as in the discussion of the "No INITs" bit in Chapter 8), I have dropped the term INIT for this edition.