Wednesday, September 21, 2011

New Updates After I Got New iMac27

After I got my new iMac 27, I found a long list of updates, including OS and Thunderbolt updates. On the second day, I got another two updates. I have not had time to experience my iMac yet.

One thing I noticed immediately is that the process of checking new updates is much faster than before, less than 1 minute. The same process used to be taking long time. Not sure if this is one of enhancements or not. I think this should be belonging to Lion.

The following is the comparison of the used space difference between before and after:

Command: df -lakUsed(Kilobytes in 1024-blocks)
Difference (A-B)384,896

The following are updates on the next day:

The following is the comparison of the used space difference between before and after:

Command: df -lakUsed(Kilobytes in 1024-blocks)
Difference (A-B)-140,700

Monday, September 19, 2011

My iMac27 Arrived!

Today my iMac 27 arrived, much earlier than expected. When I brought it home, I set it up in just minutes. Now It is in the progress to transfer all my data and apps from my TimeMachine, about 1 hour and 8 minutes left.

Today is the last day for back-to-school special. This year, the special is $100 iTunes gift card. I am still thinking if I should get MacBook Air 13"or not. I have plan to bring one back to China and give it to my sister as a gift.

I have sent out 4 Apple laptops (1 MB, 2 MBP and 1 MBA) to my relatives. They were all very suppressed by my generosity. For me, I think Apple laptops are the best gift, better than anything else.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Mac PowerPoint 2001 Presenter Mode Issue

Today I went to an event for continuing education instructors by Chinook Learning Services. An motivation speaker, Marco Iafrate, was invited to give a speech about integrating mind and body for better communication decisions and ideas. It was a great talk. I recognized the speaker's computer right away: a nice MacBookPro.

However, there was one very disappointed issue: the presentation view on project screen was not in full screen mode. During the break, several people from audience want to the front to offer help. I was there. I thought I could help, but I have never used PPT for Mac before. My initial thought was the settings in the projector. But it was find when I changed to desktop and there was no problem to present a pdf file in full screen mode. However, I could not figure it out. Since the time was short, Marco told us to give it up and restore it back the its original status. I told Marco that he should get his PPT file in PDF instead of PPT for Mac app.

After I got back home, the issue is still in my mind. I googled this issue and found some information about it (I don't have PPT so I cannot test it out).

One thing I did not gave it a try is to use Mac's zoom feature for the screen. In many of WWDC shows, Apple presenters uses the zoom feature (control+scroll up) to enlarge a portion of screen. The interface of PPT is too crowded.  The ribbon area take too much spaces, which makes the slide show too small. May be there is a way to disable ribbon show and to make the window cleaner.


The following are some information I found from web:

  • This forum discussion looks like the same issue as we had today. There two toolbar buttons in ribbon: Presenter View and Mirror Show.  It looks like PPT uses 2 screens for presentation.
  • Apple support communities forum has one topic about similar issue. A solution is about to configure screen from Apple system preferences: Displays.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Another Experience Using TimeMachine

I sold me iMac 27 last weekend. Now I am using my daughter's MBP. I have the same account on this MBP as in my previous iMac 27. However, since I have not used this MBP for very long time (3 years?), all the local settings such as apps, Safari bookmarks and other system settings are very old. I miss my iMac 27 environment very much. I know this one is just a temporary one just for about 2 weeks(my new iMac 27 is on its way to my house as I received a notice from Apple), but I feel that I am a kind of lost: missing all the settings, bookmarks and my podcasts.

Restoration of User Account from TM

Today I had a thought during the day. Can I use my TM to restore my iMac 27 account to my MBP? I gave it a try about half hour ago. It works great!

Step 1. Plug in my TM USB cable to my MBP
Step 2. Start Migration Assistance
Step 3. Go through its wizard with selection from TM. I only select my account and Applications since I don't have enough space in MBP.

In less than 10 minutes, I got my iMac 27 account back to my current MBP. Now I am using my account will almost all the settings. For example, I get my Safari bookmark back. Now I can see my RSS feeds.

New Findings of Restoration

One thing about TM restoration is that I don't have enough space on the current MBP so I have to deselect some big size items such as Movies, Documents, and Public.  This makes the size of restoration much smaller, to fit my MBP. After the restoration, my account is back.

Almost everything I need are back! In my iTunes, I find that all my podcasts are there. Some items actually are not available. I think those are videos, which were not migrated. My keychain is also back. Now I can use it for my Safari visiting all my personal web services.

Another very interesting thing is that I did select Applications in TM migration because I want to use some tools. All the tools I want are back. However, ones already in my MBP are not updated. TM seems smart enough to avoid overwriting apps. For example, Skype on MBP is an old vernon, while Skype on my TM is a new vernon.  Skype was not updated or not migrated over. I think that TM does not overwrite any apps even apps on TM is newer.  This explains that why iLife on my iMac 21 are all 2011 ones. I did complete migration when I got iMac 21. Another reason may be for not sealing apps, but not sure. For example, you can delete existing old ones to get new one from TM. Not sure it is possible for Apple apps.

Encryption of TM

I notice that I did not enable encryption for my TM. This may not safe. Anyone may take TM to get account restored. It will require password to log in to account, but theft may have enough time to try out after migration. I think it is recommend to encrypt TM.


I really like this smart and convenient migration feature of Apple computer. It saves tones of time.  I am able to get back to my normal life in just minutes.

Since this restoration is just for temporary usage, I'll delete this restored account when I get my iMac 27. I have no important files saved here during the transition time.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

My Late 2009 iMac was Sold

Yesterday I sold my iMac 27 (late 2009 model) at price $1300.00. I put it at local kijiji web site with no OBO. The reason I want to sell this one is that I want take advantage of the back to school sale opportunity. I can get about $200.00 back, with one year warranty, new iLife 2011, Lion OS, plus new hardware (CPU and Magic track pad). I think it is a great deal after 3 years usage.

I sold me iMac 24 last month at very low price. That was my first Mac computer. Now I think if I hold my iMac 27 longer, I would not be able to sale it at good price. There always some one want to save money.  In terms of usage, I think for ordinary people, there should be no different between my previous iMac 27 and new iMac 27 entry level from Apple. This is my strategy right now.

I am going to order another new iMac 27 entry level soon. With TM, I'll be back to my big screen and normal life in at most 2 weeks?  Now I am using my daughter's MacBook Pro 15, the old model. It is a good machine, but the battery needs to be replaced.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Apple Care Support and 2 Finger Swipe in Safari not Working Issue

Today I called Apple Care support to resolve my iMac issue.  The issue is that two finger swipe did not work in the past weeks. When I received this iMac,  I transferred all user accounts from TM to this computer. It was working fine.

BB uses this computer most of time. One day she told me that two-finger-swipe stopped working. I tried to check system settings and could not find anything wrong. I found that other users are OK. Only BB's account has this issue.

I googled web, and found one solution from Apple discussion forum. One person phoned Apple care and got a solution: delete from user account's Library/preferences folder. I tried but it did not working.

Then I decided to give Apple a call.  I tried twos ago.  The working hours is 8:00am-9:00pm Extern Time.  I missed twice when I remembered to call after work.  I could ask BB to call but I would rather to get experience from Apple Care Support.  Today I made a call once I got home.

A lady answered my call.  It sounds like that she has not much experience with this issue. She told me that  she is going to check with senior manager. I waited 5 minutes. When she was back, she told me that she had a solution. This one is actually as same as the one I found. It did not work. I even tried to reboot iMac after removing the plist file. She went back to her line again asking her manager.

Then the manager was on the phone.  We tried various ways. Including reboot by holding option key, unplugged power cord for 1 minutes, restarted by holding option+command+p+r.  None of those was working.

He admitted it is a really rare issue. I gave all my story about the issue. He said that it must be something screwed up in this account. Finally, after he thought it for a while, he asked me to pull the plist file of Safari out of Library/Preferences.  When it is out, two-fingure -swipe is back to normal after Safari is restarted. It is Safari plist file that is corrupted!

The support call took about 1 hour. I am happy with the result.

After that, I further approve it is the Safari plist issue.  I put the systempreferneces plist back. It is fine. When I put the trouble Safari plist back, two-finger-swip stops working.

Here is the corrupted plist file.  Does any one know what is wrong in the file?