Our utilities update report is a list of updates for Mac utilities that have been released in the past week. Though a utility can be any tool that helps you perform a routine task (including image manipulation and synchronization), our focus in this column is on bringing you those tools that help in troubleshooting Mac hardware and software problems. This past week there were updates with a number of maintenance and optimization utilities, in addition to an update for a useful multi-GPU management tool.
If you're feeling a bit like George Costanza in the Seinfeld episode "The Wallet," chances are you have a few too many scraps and cards stuffed into your carryall. Luckily, we live in the digital age, where much of the information you need to keep on your person can be stored in your mobile phone. For example, for those of us who cart around a cadre of gift cards from various establishments, JunoWallet provides an app for that, and it's available for both iOS and Android devices.
You can read the full review of the iPhone … Read more
As February 9 draws nearer more details about HP's slate of WebOS tablets that the company is expected to announce keep leaking out.
Today's edition is brought to us by PreCentral.net, which obtained a very detailed spec sheet for the Topaz tablet HP is reportedly working on. PreCentral's document is about a year old, but appears to jibe with one that Engadget posted last week. Both note that the Topaz is set to have a 1024x768 resolution 9-inch screen; have premium audio, sporting the Beats by Dre branding, and a wireless dock.
Today's document shows … Read more
Sometimes applications that usually launch quickly may take longer to load, and may either bounce in the Dock more than usual or take a while to show interface elements. The system may be otherwise responsive and active when this happens, and after the application loads it may also run well, but it might take a while to launch.
Inactive RAM Commonly used applications or those that were recently opened will usually reopen more quickly than when the same applications are launched right after the system is booted. This is in part because of the system's HotFiles cache where it … Read more
If you want to rename a file in OS X, you can select it and then do one of several things. The first is to press the Return key and the name will be highlighted for editing, or you can get information on the file and rename it using the Info window. A commonly used alternative to these is to click the name of the highlighted file with the mouse and after a small delay the file's name will be highlighted for editing.
While I have found using the Return key is the fastest way to switch between selected … Read more
MacFixIt Answers is a feature in which we answer questions e-mailed from our readers. This week we have questions on propagating permissions to enclosed items in a folder, managing items in the System library, burning iMovie projects to disc, and using multiple antivirus utilities in OS X. We continually answer e-mail questions, and though we present a few here, we certainly welcome alternative approaches and views from readers and encourage you to post your suggestions in the comments.
Question: Permissions propagation to enclosed items
As part of an ongoing troubleshooting effort, MacFixIt reader "Ernst" asked:
What does "… Read more
It's almost considered certain among fanboys that Apple's next iPad--which so far we're imaginatively calling the iPad 2--will come out in the next couple of months. It might be as early as April, as it was April of last year that saw the launch of the original iPad, which now has 87 percent of tablet market share.
Because the supposed unveiling is so close--some say within the next few weeks--the gossip mongers are in overdrive trying to find out what it will and won't have. And the latest rumor, which we spotted on Mac Rumors, … Read more
On the heels of the recent iDVD update, Apple has released a new version of iMovie, which addresses a problem with audio playback being out of sync. In addition, the update addresses a number of undisclosed stability issues. The update is available for all users of iMovie '11 (version 9.0.0 or greater) and requires OS X 10.6.3 or later to install.
The update should be available through Software Update, but can also be downloaded from Apple's iMovie 9.0.2 update page (27.52MB).
In addition to the iMovie update, Apple has released the latest … Read more
Time Machine has a great reputation as being a solid and robust backup system that can be used in a number of ways, however, as with all systems, it does have a few quirks. For example, sometimes backup runs can get stuck and not continue the backup. In these instances, though one or two backups may work fine, the system will start pausing at the "Calculating Changes" stage and never complete additional backups.
If this has just started happening, try just waiting it out. When there are major changes to the filesystem, Time Machine will do a "… Read more
Sometimes people who have just reinstalled OS X on their systems or migrated to a new boot device may find a folder entitled "Boot OSX" appearing on their desktops. The folder cannot be removed, and only seems to disappear when the system is restarted. In a nutshell, these folders appear because of a glitch that recognizes a residual boot helper partition that is used on non-standard filesystem setups.
On nonstandard filesystems such as RAID disks (including those used in an Apple Software RAID setup through Disk Utility), the system will create the main storage partitions, but in addition … Read more