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OS X 10.10 “Yosemite” is now available

October 16th, 2014 in Apple,Updates

OS X 10.10 “Yosemite” is now available as a free upgrade from the Mac App Store. Bringing a more streamlined look and compatibility with recently announced iOS features like Continuity and iCloud Drive, Yosemite promises to be one of the more significant OS X updates in recent years.

As usual, make sure all of your important apps are compatible and perform a backup before installing the update. And don’t be afraid to wait until the early adopters have exposed the “.0″ bugs before jumping in.

Apple Updates iPad air, iPad mini, iMac and Mac mini

October 16th, 2014 in Apple,iPad,Updates

Today’s Apple Event brings the iPad air 2, iPad mini 3, iMac retina 5K, an updated Mac mini and iOS 8.1. Watch the full keynote here:

A bit of a surprise, the iMac retina 5K adds a true retina display to the 27 inch iMac.

The iWorm Trojan

October 6th, 2014 in Security

OK, so you might have heard about the latest security threat to the Mac called “iWorm.” There are supposdly thousands of “infected” Macs ready to rain down doom and destruction at the behest of its bot-net wrangler. The good news is: it’s not a “worm” at all in that it can’t autonomously install itself into your computer. It is in fact a “trojan horse”, requiring that you allow it into your Mac most likely by installing a compromised application. For example, it has been detected in pirated copies of popular apps (Office, Photoshop, Parallels) available on bit torrent sites. Another reason to avoid plumbing those murky depths.

It is a variation of an existing trojan already detected by anti-virus software but you can easily check if you have somehow managed to “catch” this malware by a quick Finder check:

  1. From the Finder’s Go menu choose Computer
  2. In the Finder window that opens double click your hard drive icon
  3. In the hard drive contents double click Library
  4. In the Library folder double click Application Support
  5. In the Application Support folder look for an item named JavaW

If you find it, you’ve got iWorm. You should be able to remove it via a free anti-virus app like:

NOTE: This is not an endorsement of either app, they just happen to be free options.

2014-Oct-09 Update

Apple has updated their own built-in OS X anti-virus definitions to include this new threat so if your Mac is up to date it should be protected from new instances. If you’ve already been “infected” you’ll probably have to use an anti-virus app to remove it.

October '14 Meeting: Upgrading Tips and Tricks

Upgrading Tips and Tricks
Friday, October 10th, 2014 @ 7:00pm
Belhaven Ave. Middle School Media Center in Linwood

Upgrading Tips and Tricks for iOS and Mac OS.

Here’s a tip to get you started: if you are experiencing problems upgrading to iOS 8 “over-the-air” on the iDevice itself rather than iTunes then this document might be useful:

Presentation topics may change so be sure to verify on the day of the meeting. Got questions you’d like to have answered? Feel free to post them as comments before the meeting so the presenters have a chance to prepare.

iOS 8 Drops Today – September 17th

September 17th, 2014 in Apple,General,iPad,iPhone,Updates

All indications are that Apple will officially release iOS 8 today, possibly at 1PM Eastern time as that’s been the case previously.

Backup First

Before you upgrade make absolutely sure you’ve done a full backup. Backup to iCloud if you’ve configured it (Settings app > iCloud > Storage & Backup > Back Up Now.) And you might also want to do a full iTunes backup as well (connect to your Mac via USB/Lightning cable, select device in left column, choose Back Up Now from the Summary tab) for further protection.

Hold Off on iCloud Drive Upgrade

Apparently iOS 8 will offer to upgrade your iCloud account to Apple’s new iCloud Drive. YOU PROBABLY DON’T WANT TO DO THAT NOW if you use iCloud to sync your data to desktop Macs as syncing will not work until OS X 10.10 “Yosemite” is available which won’t be for another month or so.

After upgrading leave a comment here with your experience and impressions of iOS 8.

2014-09-17 @ 3pm Update

Apple’s upgrade servers (and probably iPhone activation servers as well) are currently being hammered and may or may not be able to respond when you upgrade. Probably a good idea to wait at least a few hours for the dust to settle. Or a few days.

2014-09-18 @ 9am Update

OK, so I’ve upgraded my iPad 3 (Retina) and learned a few things in the process.

First, this is (understandably) a large update, an almost 2GB download. If you plan to install it over-the-air via Settings on your device be aware that due to the way the install operates you need almost 5GB of free space on the device (about 2GB for the download and probably about the same for the preparing install process.) You get the bulk of that space back when the install is done but if you don’t have that much available it will not allow you to perform an over-the-air update. If you want to go this route remove enough extraneous items (movies, etc.) before you try it. But there is another option.

You don’t need that much free space if you perform the upgrade via iTunes. Connect the device to your computer via a USB cable and when you click the Check for Update button on the device’s Summary tab it should offer to install iOS 8. But do youtself a favor and perform a full backup before applying the update just to be safe.

I’m also seeing recommendations to not install iOS 8 on iPhone 4s devices, the reasoning being that as the lowest supported device performance will probably suffer which could well be the case. I haven’t upgraded my 4s yet but I did upgtrade my iPad 3 which didn’t exactly zip along with iOS 7. So far my experience is that iOS 8 seems a bit better in that respect but your mileage may vary. I would definitely turn OFF animations and such in the Accessibility section of Settings for older devices. It helps performance and saves a bit of time spent on flying icons and zooming windows.

And once again, I’d suggest not enabling iCloud Drive yet if you currently rely on iCloud syncing between your iDevice and a desktop computer. Otherwise you will not be able to sync your contacts, bookbarks, etc. until OS X Yosemite is released in a month or so.

2014-09-19 Update

OK, so I’ve upgraded my iPhone 4s and … no problems at all. If anything it feels a bit snappier but I can’t say that for sure. Also FYI: Camera Roll is gone and essentially replaced by Recent Photos.