OSX compatibility, iPhone screen replacements and more
This week in the MacNN Forums, Moderator "andi*pandi&" recently scored a white MacBook and discovered they are able to upgrade the OS for free, but wonders if 10.10 would "run like a dead horse" on that machine, or if it would be alright. Yesterday one Dedicated MacNNer announced the breaking of his wife's iPhone 4 screen, and has a few questions about buying a replacement.
New beta comes on heels of 10.10.3 release, no change log yet available
Just a week after the official release of OS X Yosemite 10.10.3 and days after the first beta of iOS 8.4, Apple has posted the first 10.10.4 beta for developers and testers, though it is has not been (and is not likely to be) made available to public beta testers until future builds are released. The sparse announcement of the new beta says only that the update focuses on "stability, compatibility, and security of your Mac," which suggests it will build on the improvements made in 10.10.3.
Not all users affected, but caused kernel panics, startup issues in some machines
On Thursday, Apple released a rare supplemental update to OS X Yosemite 10.10.3 that resolves a bug in a video driver that was causing some Mac owners to report startup issues or even full-blown kernel panics "when running certain apps that capture video," said the company. Users were reported longer-than-normal startup times or crashes. Not fixed by the new update are scattered reports of problems opening large JPEG files using Preview of QuickLook, but this is again not a universal issue.
Tapered batteries, soldered components both improve reliability and frustrate upgraders
A pair of new teardowns from iFixit and Laptopultra have revealed few surprises, and conclude that while the machines are easily openable, they are not easily repairable -- a factor that is likely to be very low-priority among potential buyers, given that the lack of moving parts in the unit also greatly improves reliability. While the new MacBook is completely un-upgradeable internally, the included USB Type C port will offer growing flexibility for any needed external connectivity or expandability.
Safari troubles, Mighty Mouse programming and more
This week in the MacNN forums, members discuss problems they have been having recently with the copy bounding box in Safari on the iPhone as it seems to be broken at the moment. One Mac Elite who is new to OS X and the Mighty Mouse is wondering how to program the Mighty Mouse to work different.
new Photos App and more
This week in the MacNN Forums, members discuss the new Photos app, weird issues with Airport Time Capsule and more. In the thread titled "Photos new Mac App from Apple" Dedicated MacNNer "Eden Aurora" highlights some problems that they are having with this new version of Photos. Yesterday, Grizzled Veteran "Walker" turned to the forums looking for help figuring out a problem with Time Capsule.
Reviews generally positive, with caveats on some teething issues
Reviews are starting to come in on the Apple Watch, but the overall consensus is what might have been predicted: that it is, by far, the best smartwatch in the world; that it redefines the bar for smartwatches in the same way that the iPhone did for mobile smartphones in 2007; that it makes nearly all other smartwatches look like toys. However -- much like the initial iPad reviews -- there is a lingering question of how much need there is for it.
Latest version of Java required to install additional GarageBand sounds
If you're a musician with lots of experience or a budding musician with little experience, Apple's GarageBand is a marquee music making application. For some, GarageBand is a key factor in choosing a Mac with many graduating to Apple's pro-audio suite Logic. As affordable as Logic is, the best part about GarageBand is that is completely free when buying a Mac. Regardless, when you run into a seemingly intractable sound file installation bug with GarageBand, it can cool the ardor for the free package. We've got a solution.
Widely beta-tested, each brings new features to devices
With today's release of OS X Yosemite 10.10.3, Apple is officially releasing its iPhoto replacement program Photos for the Mac. While the program has already been in use on iOS for some time, the new program sits alongside existing iPhoto or Aperture libraries with its own copy, and adds new abilities and features we have previously reported on. The update, leaked earlier today, also brings a non-beta version of iCloud Photo Library and new emoji, while the iOS 8.3 release shares the emoji improvements and adds wireless CarPlay support, along with new Siri accents and languages.
Yosemite on older models, Retina screen quality and more
Today in the MacNN forums, Moderator "Thorzdad" started a conversation about what machines can run Yosemite after asking if Yosemite forces older iMacs into 64-bit mode automatically. Yesterday one Fresh-Faced Recruit was asking other forum-goers their thoughts on the Retina screen quality on MacBook Pros as they are considering getting one.
A vitamin pill for the average sluggish Mac
If you have the most powerful Mac Pro that can be made today, if you routinely go through the Apple Store clicking all the upgrade options, laughing like a crazy person, spending someone else's money, then we hate you -- and we want to come round your place to see it. However, invite us soon -- because even that Mac is going to slow down to a crawl, and you wouldn't like us when we giggle. The reason for that is because there are basic elements that determine whether any Mac is going to sing or sink, and these are all things that CleanMyMac 3 is designed to fix. Specifically, it's there to fix them so that you don't have to: it helps stop you running out of space, it helps make sure your RAM isn't used up, and it keeps an eye on the health of key components.
transferring data, benefits of Thunderbolt and more
This week in the MacNN forums, Professional Poster "badidea" was looking for help figuring out what is necessary to merge the data from an old hard drive with a new SSD that they installed on their Mac. Yesterday, one Fresh-Faced Recruit was asking if there was any benefit to getting a Thunderbolt flash drive or Thunderbolt HDD for external storage, or if something without Thunderbolt would be just as good.
Updated version is second this week, hinting at problem fixes
Developers and public testers of the forthcoming OS X Yosemite 10.10.3 release have unexpectedly been notified of a second release this week, this time with build number 14D130a. Normally spaced a week apart, the last update came on Monday with 14D127a -- suggesting that the company is zeroing in on fixes for certain known issues, and perhaps planning a public release in the near future. Testers are cautioned to keep backups current while testing the new beta.
strange Safari behavior, remote App woes and more
Yesterday in the MacNN forums, Moderator "Thorzdad" reported some strange behavior with the way that Safari was displaying webpages, noting that it doesn't look like pages are being saved in the cache properly. Late last week, forum-members tried to assist "The Final Dakar" with figuring out why his Remote app doesn't see his Apple TV.
Solid, well-made app backs up and copies your hard drives
Nothing digital really exists unless it exists twice. For all that we have these great interconnected cloud services, there is still a hard drive holding on to our data somewhere and all hard drives fail eventually. They're like politicians in that respect: they go on until they fail. Carbon Copy Cloner is a way to make failures annoying rather than fatal to your work. It backs up any or all of your files and it also optionally creates a separate and bootable hard drive.
how to erase and reinstall OS X and more
One Forum Regular turned to the MacNN Forums this week looking for advice on how to erase and reinstall OS X, and found some useful information which might be helpful to anyone else who is trying to do this. One Fresh-Faced Recruit is looking for help trying to access data in an administrator account after their computer froze and was forced to shut down.
Connectivity down globally, but issue resolved by 11:30AM ET
A widespread but apparently brief outage was reported to have affected Apples online digital storefronts this morning, such as the App Store, iTunes Store and Mac App Store. The problem appeared to occur worldwide, but Apple's System Status Page did not acknowledge the issue until hours after it was resolved, which occurred at approximately 8:30AM Pacific. The company suffered a much longer and more severe outage just two weeks ago.
This week in the MacNN forums, Fresh-Faced Recruit "Pootie Tang" raised a red flag over an incident they had with Safari that they believe to be caused by a virus, thought they quickly discovered it was just easily-removable adware. Mac Elite "And.reg" has been having bizarre issues with trying to get iCloud keychain working, and has turned to the forums looking for advice.
Version is identical to new update for Appleseed testers
On Monday, Apple issued the fifth beta version of OS X 10.10.3 Yosemite to developers. The latest version, which comes on the heels of the previous fourth release that was aimed solely at new 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro users, is also being released to registered public beta users as the second such version. The forthcoming Photos app has been updated (though it still has some known issues), as well as Yosemite's recovery tools.
iCloud keychain issues, Office 2016 for Mac and more
Yesterday in the MacNN Forums, members discussed bizarre issues with trying to get iCloud keychain working in a thread started by Mac Elite "And.reg," who was baffled about "what the heck is going on." "What do you think of Office 2016 for Mac?" asks Mac Elite "schalliol," who is looking for opinions about Office, and not looking for alternatives.
Fantastical 2 for Mac arriving March 25, only hint is revised Yosemite look
The well-regarded calendaring program, Fantastical for Mac, is about to receive a major upgrade. Version 2.0 will be launched on March 25, and will feature a revised look more in line with the Yosemite aesthetic. The company isn't saying anything about what, if any, new features the update will include, but has indicated that while there will be no upgrade pricing for existing users, a limited-time launch sale price will act to fill that role.
CEO vows to improve quality, says collaboration is why Apple is better
Following an excerpt from the forthcoming biography called Becoming Steve Jobs about the mercurial co-founder and former CEO of Apple, the company's current leader Tim Cook was interviewed by Fast Company about what has changed -- and what has stayed the same -- since Jobs' untimely death in 2011. In the wide-ranging conversation, Cook owns up to some growing pains, but says the spirit of Jobs lives on.
Email not always working between GMail, iCloud accounts
Some users are having issues with iCloud-based accounts, such as those ending with @me.com or @icloud.com not receiving messages from GMail, an issue that Apple is aware of and is working to fix. The problem is inconsistent in nature, but most often marked by a timeout message from Apple's servers that blames "too many rejections" and encourages users to try again later.
anti-reflective coating wear and more
Today in the MacNN forums, Mac Elite "And.reg" started a thread discussing the anti-reflective coating on MacBook Pro models, stating that he is considering getting a 2015 model, but is concerned the coating will wear off. Senior User "RobOnTheCape" is looking for a way to use Photos to reduced the size of a batch of images.
MacBook Returns, home network bugs and more
This week in the MacNN forums, members discussed the new MacBook, home networking and more. One of this week's most popular topics was the news that Apple will be bringing back the "MacBook" name for their next notebook computer. Yesterday, Mac Elite "Helmling" was trying to figure out what was going on with his home network, as computers appear to be replicating in the Network settings.
Save your friends and family from confusion, even long-distance
Today's Pointers column is aimed squarely that the guy or girl who is pretty good -- or at least vaguely fluent -- with Macs, and has thus suddenly been branded a tech "guru" by their Apple-illiterate or tech-unfriendly family, friends, long-lost relatives, or strangers in the street. You want to help, but they don't live with you, or perhaps a continent away. Nevertheless, you can be their knight in silicon armor. Read on to find out how.
Outage may have cost apple up to $8 million in lost media sales
After nearly a 12-hour downtime, Apple's Internet-facing services such as the iTunes Music Store, iOS App Store, iBookstore and Mac App Store have returned. Apple calls the issue related to an "internal DNS" problem, and with estimates of hourly revenue at about $1 million an hour, this may be the most costly Internet service outage ever.
Storage on Watch limited to 2GB for music, 75MB for photos
Some further details on Apple's new Watch device have come out that were not mentioned during the public presentation on Monday, one of which is a detail that further points out how unlike most technology devices the Apple Watch really is: the device actually has very little room for standalone storage. As we reported prior to the event, the Apple Watch (all versions) has just 8GB of independent storage, with only 2GB available for music and just 75MB allocated for photos. The rest, presumably, is for the operating system and apps.
MacBook Returns, Force Touch, Apple Watch
Yesterday, Apple made announcements ranging from CarPlay to the return of the MacBook, and readers can discuss what the future of Apple holds this week in the MacNN Forums. Junior Member "Kensington" started a thread titled MacBook Returns, stating that he is "stoked" about it, and wants to get it in gold to match his grille. Forum-goers discuss the latest update to the trackpad, called "Force Touch" in the thread by the same name.
AppleCare now handling support for Beats Music, Apple Pay for Business
Apple will now handle support for Beats Music customers, along with businesses offering Apple Pay, through its AppleCare division, according to reports. Previously, Beats Music support was handled by an outsourced firm, but has now been moved in-house after the company was acquired by Apple last year. The move to offer support to businesses implementing Apple Pay will encourage more companies to do so. There is also a specific Merchants support hotline for Apple Pay for those already using the system.
importing address book from Outlook to iCloud
This week in the MacNN forums, Senior User "Chinasaur" was asking fellow forum-goers how they would go about importing a .csv file from Outlook.com to iCloud as they have accidentally erased their contacts and this is the only backup they have. So far a solution has yet to be found. Members continue to discuss reasons why someones Mac might have hard system crashes.
Small batch of iPhones may have short-lived battery
A battery exchange program for some iPhone 5 users has been extended into from this year into 2016. Initially limited to "two years after the first retail sale or until March 1, 2015, whichever gives longer coverage" the language on Apple's website for the program was quietly changed to run through January 2016.
Institutions having to redouble efforts to guard against traditional fraud, identity theft
The security built into Apple Pay is so resistant to tampering, reports the UK newpaper The Guardian, that criminals are focusing more than ever on traditional bank weaknesses surrounding common fraud and identity theft techniques, exploiting the lax identity requirements some banks employ for users who are adding credit cards to Passbook, which stores the data so that Apple Pay can later utilize it. So far, the fraud has racked up millions of dollars from stolen credit cards added to Apple Pay.
Coriolis debuts Yosemite-specific iDefrag 5
Coriolis Systems has unveiled its latest version of utility tool iDefrag. Now on version 5, the new software has a revamped user interface to accommodate Yosemite, boasts easier-to-understand statistics about fragmented drives, better handling of bad drive blocks, new documentation, and enhanced support for Retina displays. The new version is priced at $40, with an upgrade from previous versions available for $20 through the company's web store.
clean installs, contact access and more
Yesterday in the MacNN forums, one Fresh-Faced Recruit was asking other members how they might go about doing a clean install of the OS on a 2010 MacBook Pro that they don't have a system install disc for. A discussion about giving Apps access to contacts was started by Mac Elite "jeff k" earlier this week, after he asked about a specific app that was requesting such access.
trouble pasting text into mail, cleaning App cookies and more
Recently one Fresh-Faced Recruit turned to the MacNN forums looking for help figuring out why they were having trouble pasting text into Mail. A solution has yet to be found. A discussion about how to clear out cookies that are generated by iPhone Apps is under way in the thread titled "cleaning iPhone App cookies" that was started last week.
Excellent free app psychoanalyzes your batteries
The curiously-named CoconutBattery 3.2 is a free app that examines the batteries in your MacBooks and your iOS devices. One click and you know everything: it gives you the skinny on every possible scintilla of information about the state your battery is in.
New proposals may weaken 'paid prioritization' ban, throttling restrictions
One of the three Federal Communications Commission board members previously expected to vote in favor of Chair Tom Wheeler's Title II net neutrality proposal has thrown a spanner in the works by suggesting some changes that could possibly dilute the effectiveness of the proposal. Commissioner Mignon Clyburn has asked Wheeler for some changes that wouldn't challenge the overall concept of the proposal, but could weaken FCC enforcement of some key aspects.
large data transfer, Bootcamp trouble and more
Yesterday in the MacNN forums, "the_badger" was looking for a way to copy 6TB of data, and is wondering if there is some kind of app or script that will not stop on filename errors, and will provide a list of items that were not copied. Junior Member "phkc070408" is wondering if there is a good way of deleting the cookies and cache from apps on his iPhone.
false accusations, trash warnings and more
This week in the MacNN Forums, members have been giving useful advice and helping others solve a variety of problems. Yesterday one angry Fresh-Faced Recruit turned to the forums to seek an explanation for a situation where the Apple store has allegedly falsely accused them of tampering with their iPhone, and refuses to fix it under warranty.
Company will compensate owners who have already paid to repair issues
While many sufferers would call the move years overdue, Apple has now officially launched a repair program to fix MacBook Pro models sold between February 2011 and February 2013 that exhibited issues with distorted video, loss of video, or unexpected restarts. The program will start tomorrow, February 20 in the US and Canada, and on February 27 in other countries, and will repair the machines at no charge. Additionally, owners who have already paid for repairs may be eligible for compensation.
Simple, easy tips to keep your Mac humming along for years on end
This week's Pointers column concerns itself with a question we get asked a lot: "I've invested a lot into my Mac, how can I get the most out of it?" There are a lot of answers to this depending on what one means by "the most out if it," but apart from taking advantages of the many great programs and services Apple includes in every Mac, most people want to make their purchase last for as long as feasible. Here's a few tips on how to do that.
Problem limited to third generation models, software reinstall doesn't help
A support thread opened on the Apple Community Support forum notes that an Apple TV third-generation model will repeatedly hit a wired network with Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) network IP address request broadcasts, seeking an IP address, regardless if it has one or not. MacNN has witnessed this behavior with several Apple TV version 3 units (but not all that we tested), and also confirmed a pair of workarounds for the situation.
where to buy aluminum Mac Pro and more
Earlier this week in the MacNN forums, one Mac Elite took to the forums looking for suggestions on where they might be able to find a previous-generation Mac Pro apart from eBay. Mac Elite "FireWire" is trying to figure out a way to batch rename files with Automator in the order that they are displayed.
Malware not suspected, flaw in driver or buffer likely the culprit
Some Apple Thunderbolt displays either in line with a Thunderbolt Ethernet adapter or connected through the wired Ethernet port on the display seem to be flooding networks periodically with junk packets. A series of user submitted threads on the Apple customer self-support forums are demonstrating that periodically, a Thunderbolt display manifesting the issue is broadcasting 800mbit/s of data to every port in the local area network, effectively knocking fast Ethernet (100mbit/s) users off the network in an inadvertent denial of service attack launched by the display.
troubleshooting, backups and more
Today in the MacNN forums, members continue to assist "l008com" with getting to the root cause of a problem with his Mac mini that is making it crash and freeze. In a thread started by "Waragainstsleep," forum-goers discuss services such as Backblaze and Carbonite for backing up file servers.
FDA reassesses regulations, apps, Class III medical devices
According to a 2014 study by the Center for Disease Control, 29.1 million Americans -- 9.3 percent of the national population -- have diabetes. Particularly for those with Type 1 diabetes, keeping a close eye on blood glucose levels is key for avoiding life-threatening highs and lows. DexCom, makers of blood glucose monitors that take a reading every five minutes, is said to be developing a new Apple Watch app to interface with its monitors, expected to be ready when it becomes available in April.
Find and remove duplicate images, files and folders on your Mac
It's a conspiracy of hard disk manufacturers, that's what it is. We start off with these 3TB drives in our iMacs, and the next thing you know we're eyeing up external RAID drives. We're also finding that our Macs are so full that they are running visibly slower, infuriatingly slower than we bought them. Until we unmask the cunning storage manufacturers who make us create so many files, we can use Tidy Up 4 to at least get back some of the space.
problems with Landscape and big fat Chrome
This week in the MacNN Forums, members discuss a wide range of topics from problems with landscape mode, and how to deal with an out-of-control Chrome browser. Moderator "ibook_steve" is having trouble with landscape mode on his iPhone 5s, and has turned to the forums asking for advice. "RobOnTheCape" has noticed that Chrome has reached 1GB on his system, and wonders if there is any way of slimming it down.
large e-mails, Macs freezing and more
Today in the MacNN forums, one confused Forum Regular was trying to figure out why they were unable to send large emails, stating that they thought the latest OS "did away with e-mail size restrictions." Yesterday, one long-time member of the forums had their 2012 Mac mini completely freeze twice, and is hoping fellow forum-goers will have some advice on figuring out why.