Dec 23

pegasus

Last week I had a hard disk crash.  If you’ve had a hard disk crash you may know it can take a day or two to get things up and running again, a day or two that I didn’t have.  I was flat our trying to get away on holidays before Christmas. Thankfully, I have a Promise Pegasus RAID array, and I can’t believe how great it was. I was up and running again in 30 seconds – I kid you not!  This article describes how it works for those who might be interested.

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Oct 07

 time machine

If you’re like me after a year or two you may have outgrown your Time Machine backup and with Hard Drive prices dropping it’s time to get a bigger hard disk to host your Time Machine  backup. But starting a new time machine backup on a new hard disk means you lose the continuity with your old backups. Thankfully you can move an existing Time Machine backup from one hard drive to another. Here’s how.

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Jan 07

migration-assistant

Some of the newer macbooks and macbook airs do not have an ethernet port or firewire port, so you can’t connect them to an older macbook to copy your old files and settings accross. What do you do? Continue reading »

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Sep 06

itunes

Importing songs into iTunes is easy – you just INSERT the CD, SELECT it in iTunes, and press the ‘Import’ button!

But… the default setting on iTunes is not the best setting to use when importing songs. It’s far better to use the ‘Apple Lossless’ setting which will keep your music at CD quality. If you must compress the music (e.g. you want to fit it on your iPod or a laptop) then use the  bitrate of 320kbps rather than the default 128kbps of iTunes.

This article describes how to import songs into iTunes with the better quality bitrate.
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Aug 11

If you have a Lion installer on a USB thumbdrive, you can use it to upgrade your Mac from Snow Leopard to Lion, but if you have an older version of OS X you can’t upgrade. You need to first upgrade to Snow Leopard OR you can erase everything and do a completely fresh install of Lion.  After installing Lion on my iMac, I wanted to delete everything on my laptop and do a fresh install of Lion. But the installer will not install over an older version of OSX. I had to delete the old version of OSX, then install Lion from the USB thumbdrive. Here’s how to do a fresh install of Lion.

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Apr 10

Is your computer backed up? With 2T hard disks at around $100, there’s no excuse not to have your computer backed up. At the very least, you should have an external USB Hard Disk with some kind of backup on it. If you haven’t – do it now! This is the easiest way.

As for me – it’s the start of the New Year so I’ve re-evaluated my backup regime. I think it’s working well. Here’s what it is: Continue reading »

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Jul 12

 

If you’ve tried watching DVD’s on your laptop (eg on a plane or in the car) you’ll notice the batteries wear down pretty quickly. Here’s how to copy your DVD onto your laptop, which you can do at home, so when you take your laptop on the road you don’t need to take the original disk, and so the batteries on your laptop will last longer.

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Apr 03

backup1.png

There are two main ways to backup your Apple computer.

1. Use Time Machine to automatically backup. This is the Apple way – the easy way.

OR

2. Manually backup your computer with some other software such as Super Duper or Carbon Copy Cloner.

If you are a beginner I recommend Time Machine. Look here.

Apple’s way (Time Machine) is a lot simpler. It’s automatic. It doesn’t rely on you remembering to do anything. The big disadvantage  is that the backup is not bootable.  So if your computer crashes you need to insert the original DVD and restore from the Time Machine backup. This process can take hours – not good if you are just heading out the door and need a file. But it will get your computer back to what it was like the hour before it crashed!

The second method takes a few steps longer to set up, but  your backup will be bootable. That means if  you plug your backup drive in, and then hold down Option-Command-Shift-Delete during startup,  you can boot instantly off your backup drive. In an emergency you can plug in your backup and be running from it under a minute. You can’t do this with Time Machine. The downside it it will only take you back to THE LAST TIME YOU BACKED UP.

I do both. I have time-machine running so my most recent work is always backed up, and I do a CCC backup monthly so I have an instant bootable backup ready to go for emergencies.

This article describes how to manually backing up using Super Duper. If you want to use Time Machine as well, here’s an article on how to backup using time-machine.

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