Tuesday, April 30, 2013

An Idea to Fix Your Macbook if It's Running Slow

Fix Your Macbook

Okay, so yesterday, I was looking for something new to write about.  I was looking to see if there was a problem  Apple users were facing.  I stumbled across a forum that was talking about Macbooks running slow.  If you are having this problem, I know it can be annoying.  We like things quick!  If we are searching for information, we want it now.  When you're used to working at a certain level and now you can't, that can be aggravating.  Luckily, this forum also had a way to fix your Macbook if it's running slow.

The Explanation

I'm including the explanation first so you can verify your symptoms before using the fix.  If your CPU idle % is low, like significantly below 80%, there is a good chance a process is draining your CPU.  You can verify this using Activity Monitor.  To open Activity Monitor, use one of these options:

Option 1

  • Click Launchpad on the dock
  • Click Other
  • Then select Activity Monitor
  • Select CPU and view the % idle

Option 2

  • On the top toolbar, select Go
  • Then Utilities
  • Then select Activity Monitor
  • Select CPU and view the % idle

The Fix

  • Turn off your Macbook and plug the power cord into a wall outlet.
  • Hold down the left Shift, Control, Option, and Power buttons for 10 seconds.  The Macbook should remain off during this time.
  • Then, release the buttons and power on the Macbook.

This is a simple fix for a problem that could complicate you life.  Hopefully, this tip will remedy your slow Macbook problems so you can get back to being productive.

Did this help fix your Mac issue?

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You may also like:

The Refurbished Mac Mini Story

Screenshots on a Mac

Installed a SSD in Macbook and Mac Mini

Monday, April 22, 2013

How to Setup and Configure Your Apple TV

I'm guessing you have other Apple products if you have decided to purchase an Apple TV.  Or maybe the Apple TV is your gateway device into the Apple ecosystem.  Either way, you have to setup and configure your Apple TV so you can enjoy all that it has to offer.  So, let's get started!


Setup is pretty easy and straightforward.  You will need the following:

  • Your Apple TV
  • HDMI cable
  • Ethernet cable (if you're not using WiFi)

Then you simply connect the Apple TV to power.  You connect the HDMI cable to the Apple TV and the other end to your television.  If you are not using WiFi, then you will need to connect an ethernet cable to your Apple TV and connect the other end to your router or switch.  Now, your Apple TV is setup.  Let's configure it!


First, you will start with the network configuration.

If you are using WiFi, then you will need to know the name of your network and the password.  The Apple TV will walk you through the steps to configure your network connection.

If you are using an ethernet cable, your Apple TV will configure your connection automatically.

Next, you will have to configure your Apple ID so you can make purchases from the iTunes Store.  You also want to make sure Home Sharing is configured so you can access your iTunes content on your computer.

An additional note, make sure you have the latest version of iTunes on your computer that has all your content.  Then, enable Home Sharing on your computer so you can share your content with the Apple TV.

Lastly, if you have subscriptions for the apps (Netflix, Hulu+, and the sports apps), you can configure them when you click on the apps.  These will greatly increase your content...maybe making it possible to get rid of your cable box.

Additional Considerations

If you need to make additional tweaks to your Apple TV, go to Settings.  Here you can adjust your screen saver to show off your cool pictures from your iTunes library.  You have multiple options for how you can display your photos.  You can also make sure AirPlay is enabled so you can play video from your iPhone, iPad, or Macbook on your Apple TV.  You may also mirror your device's screen if your device allows it and you are using the latest Apple TV.

Under Settings, then General, you will see where you can update your Apple TV software if and when needed.

Under Settings, then General, then iTunes Store, you can adjust your location, video resolution, and turn HD Previews on and off.  Most people will want HD Previews on but if your internet connection is not fast enough to support it, you may want to turn off HD Previews.

Now, you are more than prepared to navigate you Apple TV and enjoy all it offers.  The best advice I can offer is to use it often and you will become familiar with it.  Now, you have setup and configured your Apple TV, grab some popcorn and enjoy the show!

Check out Amazon for deals on Apple TV!

Did you find this tutorial helpful?

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Monday, April 15, 2013

Save Space on iPhone with Media Streaming

If you're like me, you purchased the 16 GB iPhone to save money.  It is a good option to save money but 16 GBs can fill up quickly.  Add your favorite apps, videos, music, and books and you'll see how quickly you can use up 16 GBs of storage.  No one wants to try to update their apps only to find out they don't have enough space.  Luckily, due to technology, it's not too large of an issue.  Let's look at a few ways you can save space on your iPhone with media streaming.

Before we jump into media streaming, if you want to cut space, make sure you remove any apps that you don't use regularly...or at all.  I'm sure we can all find a few that maybe were purchased because they were free and now we have no use for the app.  By only keeping useful apps on your iPhone, you'll cut down on space.

If you have a lot of videos, music, and playlists on your iPhone, you can cut back and use the following apps to increase your content while taking up less storage space:


You are probably already aware of this app.  If not, this is a FREE app that allows you to stream music to your iPhone.  You can create stations based on songs and artists that you like.  If you get bored of a station, you can either switch to another that you like or add another song or artist to your station to refresh your station.  This is a FREE app but because it is FREE, your music will have interruptions for advertisements.  You can opt for the subscription and then you can listen commercial free.

YouTube and Vevo

Just like using them on your home computer, you can use YouTube and Vevo apps for media streaming on your iPhone.  Together they have a huge selection of videos for your enjoyment.  Vevo focuses on music videos while YouTube has a lot of other video options.

Netflix, Hulu+, and Coolstreaming

You can always turn to Netflix and Hulu+ to watch your favorite television shows and movies on your schedule, even when you're away from home.  This will really increase your content while taking up little space on your iPhone.  You will need subscriptions to enjoy Netflix and Hulu+ on your iPhone.  Coolstreaming is a new (and FREE) app to me, but I'm already liking it.  The reviews on it are average (about 3 stars), but I'm currently watching live television using Coolstreaming and AirPlay to display it on my television through my AppleTV.  So, when this app is working as it should, you should be able to watch live television while you're on the go.  

These apps are just the tip of the iceberg.  There are more apps available that will allow you to stream even more content so make sure you browse through the app store.  This is a good start though to show you how you can save space on your iPhone with media streaming.  

Unfortunately, some of these apps may be tough on your battery so make sure you have a charger nearby.  But overall, now you have lots of options for entertainment on your iPhone!

Did you find these tips helpful?

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Monday, April 8, 2013

How to Use AirPrint with Your iPod, iPad, or iPhone

AirPrint for your iPod, iPad, or iPhone

There is a common misconception about Apple and its products.  Everyone thinks because Apple is proprietary, their devices don't play well with others.  Apple wants you to use all their products because they believe it will give you the best may provide a better experience, but it's not your only option.  I use a Linksys router on my home network and rarely have any issues.  I also use a Western Digital external hard drive for my Time Machine backups.  Once again, it's rare that I have any problems.  Now, that's cleared up so let's look at how to use AirPrint on your iPod, iPad, or iPhone.

I honestly don't use AirPrint much.  I haven't really thought about the feature.  If I'm home and I want to print, I'm usually on my Macbook.  There could be other situations when you may need to use AirPrint.  Someone mentioned printing on iPads today in a casual conversation.  I didn't know all the details off the top of my head.  I knew of it and a few general details.  Enough to let the person know AirPrint should work with different printers.  Once I got home, I did some quick research...literally, in 5 minutes (maybe less), I had printed from my iPad.   So if you need to learn more about this feature, this will be a quick tutorial.

For printers, the main things you have to do is verify that your printer is AirPrint capable and that your iOS device is on the same home network as your printer.  You can find a list of compatible printers here.

Once, you know your printer is AirPrint capable or you have purchased an AirPrint capable printer, you can easily begin printing from your iPhone, iPod, or iPad. You can AirPrint from apps that include the print capability.  To test AirPrint, I used the Notes app.  To initiate AirPrint on your iOS device, just follow these steps:

  1. Inside the app you are using, look for the Sharing icon and select it.
  2. Then select the Print button
  3. Then select your Printer if it's not already selected and press Print.
  4. That's it!  Too easy, right?
Keep in mind, not all apps will have the AirPrint feature.  You may need to try one that you would expect to have the feature (such as the Notes app) just to ensure it works.  Then you can enjoy AirPrint on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod.

If you found this helpful, make sure you leave a comment, share it, "Like" us on Facebook, and follow me on Twitter!

Monday, April 1, 2013

Are You Having Problems With Your iPhone 5 Home Button?

iPhone 5

Most iPhone 5 owners may have some complaints about the screen size in a world where Apple's competitors are creating larger screens, but I haven't seen too many issues around the iPhone 5's hardware.  Recently, I was introducing Apple Newbies to a fellow iPhone owner and I asked her if she had any issues.  She mentioned that her home button was sticking.  I have never came across this issue with my iPhone so it wasn't something I could fix on the spot.  I asked a few questions for a quick resolution but her answers steered me away from a quick fix.  I told her I would look into it and write a post for her and any other iPhone users having issues with their home button.  I am a man of my word.  I hope she reads this and it helps her (and anyone else with this problem) get back to enjoying her iPhone 5.

First of all, the iPhone 5 should still be under warranty if you purchased it less than a year ago.  You should be able to take it to your nearest Apple Store to have it fixed or to receive a replacement.  Apple proudly displays on their website they have "the highest in customer satisfaction with consumer smartphones".  You can always remind them of that.  Apple's limited warranty on the iPhone 5 covers your iPhone for hardware defects for 1 year from the date you purchased it.  Make sure you read it and are familiar with it...don't forget your receipt.  If your device is under warranty, this is probably the best solution.  You don't want to do anything that could void your warranty.

Next, previous iPhone models had problems with their home buttons as well.  If you own an older iPhone model or your iPhone 5 is no longer covered under warranty, here are some resources to help you:

1.  Watch the video below or read the full article: Four Ways to Fix and Unresponsive iPhone Home Button

2.  Read this if you prefer a Wiki version.

3.  View this article:  iPhone Home Button Not Working or Unresponsive

4.  As a last resort, if you need to open your iPhone, follow this at your own risk.

By the time you are done with all these options, your iPhone home button issues should be resolved.  iPhone owners everywhere should now be able to enjoy their iPhones once again.

If you found this helpful, make sure you leave a comment, share it, "Like" us on Facebook, and follow me on Twitter!