There shouldn't be any unnecessary background programs running under OS X. The only "additional" background processes running would be those that you added by installing other programs.
To remove those programs, trash the programs.
You can go into Utilities > Activity Monitor and see the processes. You can stop the processes. Some will stop the OS from performing correctly. It is NOT advisable to do this unless you know exactly what things are for.
Hi, i have a Mac OSX 10.4 Intel Core 2 Duo 15" MacBook Pro. I was wondering if anyone knows any free software or how to stop unnecessary background processes and programs that can potentially slow down my laptop. I used to use a Windows computer and in order to remove unnecessary background programs and processes from occuring, i have to go to Run and enter msconfig. Does anyone know if my Mac OS X 10.4 would need to do any of that or are there really know unneccessary background processes running that are currently slowing down my laptop, thanks ppl.