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For my fellow Macintosh users - here's a little education about malware. If you own Macs like me, you have very little to worry about when it comes to viruses and malware. Notice I said "very little" and not "nothing" to worry about. Yes, there is malware out there that can infect OS X, but it is very rare. Plus, since OS X is based on UNIX, the only way to infect the System is by intentionally allowing the malware to be installed, which would require entering your Administrator name and password at least once. Pretty simple - if you weren't installing software or modifying a System preference of some kind, then don't enter your password. Many of my clients still worry. Clicking a link in a suspect email or visiting a malicious website can certainly open you up to infection, but using common sense should be all the protection you need. With that said, there are a couple of anti-virus/anti-malware applications for OS X out there that... read more

If you've ever run into an issue with Safari where it stalls and never loads a web page, yet other browsers work okay, then this just might be the answer to your dreams.   Since Safari tries to load a page and then immediately fails, and you've verified you do have Internet access with another browser like Firefox, it's safe to assume there's a DNS issue (if DNS breaks, you simply can't find web pages by their name). Specifically it's a switch for something called DNS prefetching.   I have personally seen this issue under OS X Mavericks 10.9.5, but it's been a known problem since at least Safari 5.01 under OS X 10.7 Lion. DNS prefetching is enabled by default, and on some machines, with some routers, it can break Safari completely. Disabling prefetching isn't something you can do in Safari's preferences, but you can still tell OS X.   There's one command that needs to be run in the Terminal. You can find Terminal in Applications/Utilities. Just... read more

  Not to worry, this is iTunes periodically updating your apps!   Every once in a while you might find a list of files ending in .ipa that just magically appear in your Trash.   Files ending in .ipa are applications you use on your iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch. iTunes doesn't replace the old versions of your apps when updating, it trashes them. It just doesn't empty the Trash for you! It's safe to do so.   Happy Mac'ing!   Paul K. The Mac Doc    

  If you have a Mac and you've suffered a hard drive failure, your search for the term "data loss" or the like has brought you to this article for a reason, so please read on. I promise I'll get to the point.   How do you classify different computer users? How many kinds are there in the world?   Would you go by skill or experience, like Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced? Would you classify them by the type of computer they use? Windows/Mac/UNIX, etc? Nope. The answer, my friends, is two. There are ONLY TWO groups of computer users in this world, and you must always remember who they are:   Group #1 are those users who back up their data.   Group #2 are those users who wish they had.   That's it. Simple, right? I impress this on all my students. Unfortunately, we've all be in that second group at some point, especially those of us who've been using computers a long time. Losing one's data... read more

  For those of you who may have purchased Apple's spiffy $79 external CD/DVD burner (or Superdrive as they call it), it may not have worked when you plugged it into your older Mac. A lot of times a person's built-in optical drive fails, and they see the new external at the Apple Store. They naturally grab one assuming it'll work because they'll be using it with a Mac. Hopefully there's a "Genius" selling it to them who's going to ask which Mac they plan on using it with. I'd think probably not. It turns out it's only the fairly newer Macs that support it. When you plug it in, your older Mac might very well inform you that "This Apple External CD/DVD drive is not compatible with this Mac. Please go to Apple Support to read more." What they show you is a compatibility matrix that seems to makes no sense. I haven't compared every spec of every Mac they list, but 2009 seems to be the general cutoff.   Perhaps Apple requires USB 3, and... read more

If you have a Mac that runs OS X, then there's a simple maintenance procedure you can perform that will help to keep things running smoothly. It's called repairing permissions, and can be done using the built-in application called Disk Utility, located in Applications/Utilities.   OS X is based on UNIX, a very versatile, robust and powerful operating system. It's what runs the Internet. It's what got us to the Moon. And a modern version of it is what runs your Macintosh.   UNIX is based on Permissions. It must know which user has which rights for each file and folder (directory). If permissions for the files that run the System get messed up, bad things can happen. It could be as annoying as one application not launching, or as catastrophic as not booting anymore.   Fortunately, Apple allows you to repair the permissions for the System, but they really don't tell you how or why. I just told you the why, now you need to know when, and how.   When... read more

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