Answers...

to commonly asked questions.

Where is image capture?

I tried to scan a document today but the Image Capture Icon is not on my 13”mac, did you forget to upload it on that computer? Also, I do not know how scan to to the computer from the printer, there is not an option to select my computer, only my husbands. I need more coaching on this.
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Image capture is a part of the Operating system and is on every Mac. Just like Safari, Photos, Mail, or Calendar. You can search for it by click on the magnifying glass in the top right corner of your screen and typing “image capture” or you can also find it by looking in the applications folder. Once it’s open you can right click on the icon in the dock and choose to “keep in dock”. It will then stay in the dock even when you quit the program.

How can I tell if time machine has completed?

How can I tell if Time machine is finished?
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To see when the last backup of Time Machine was completed, you can click the small clock in the top right corner of the menu bar. It will tell you the last time a backup was completed. Sometimes you’ll see “in progress” or “preparing backup”. If you’d like to see the actual backup, you can open your time machine drive usually found on the right hand side of your finder window or you may see its icon on the desktop either yellow or olive green in color. Open it and go to backup.backupsdb/The name of your computer/Macintosh HD. From there you will see a list of folder which contain backups relating to the time the folder is named.

When does iCloud finish syncing pics?

How can I tell if iCloud transfers are complete?
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Photos to iCloud: you can tell by viewing the progress bar in Photos Preferences under iCloud. With Photos open, go to the menu bar under the word “Photos” in the top left corner of your screen and select preferences. Next select the iCloud pane. If you see a progress bar, it’s still in progress. If you do not, it either needs time to evaluate what the cloud has vs what Photos has or it is finished for now. Photos syncing can take a long time. Photos does need to be open for syncing to the cloud to occur.

How to detect how many pictures in Photos

How can I tell how many pictures I have in Photos?
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To see how many pics you currently have, you can open Photos, and select command+i. Be sure you don’t have an individual picture selected. Otherwise, you’ll see info for only that picture.

Screen Shot 2018-08-29 at 6.53.50 PM

iCloud Storage almost full message

Scotty,
Can you please tell me what I need to do? Won’t the tm backup be enough for the photos? I thought I would have plenty of space? I am very confused.

IMG_7665

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There are two types of space we have to deal with when it comes to these devices. 1: the onboard space. The amount of space we purchased when we bought our iPhones or iPads. This space is usually 32gigs, 64 gigs, 128 gigs or 265 gigs. This space can not be increased. To see how much space you have and are using on your device, go to Settings/iPhone Storage. This is not what the message your getting is referring to.

2: iCloud storage space. This is space we rent from Apple and can be increased or decreased as needed. This is what the message you are getting is referring to. Most of the time, we accidentally fill this space up by choosing to backup our phones or iPads or both to the cloud. This often leads to multiple backups in the cloud. Most of which are unnecessary due to their age. To remove older obsolete backups, go to system preferences on your computer and select iCloud.


Take note of what your bar graph shows on your own account. For instance, my iCloud space is 200 gigs (2.99 per month) and is taken up mostly by my photos. Next select Manage. My first guess is that in your case, backups are taking up the majority. Especially if you are on the 50 gig (.99 a month plan).
Screen Shot 2018-08-26 at 8.23.47 PM

Select the old backup in the list and Delete. That should free up space and you wouldn't see that message until later when you fill your iCloud space up once again.

There are two ways to solve this issue. 1: remove data in iCloud that doesn't need to be there. 2: buy more iCloud storage space.

Note: Pictures can play a confusing role in iCloud storage. When iCloud Photo Library is enabled, only thumbnail versions of our pictures are stored locally on our phones but full rez versions of our pictures live in our iCloud storage. Therefore, if a person has a very large photos library like I do, they need more iCloud storage space if they choose to use iCloud Photo Library. The other option is to not use that service and manually sync your pictures from your phone like we used to prior to 2012. Check your backup first. That's most often the reason we fill our iCloud storage up. Let me know what next questions you may have.

I have two Outlooks on my computer.

Yikes - I don't know best way to explain this but it's almost like the old and new versions of Outlook have switched places on my computer. The Outlook I use (version 16.16) all of a sudden is missing a ton of emails and the older version seems to be downloading 30K+ emails. Any advice you can offer?
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In your applications folder you should see the new version of Outlook listed. However, you may have another older version of Outlook (yellow O icon) inside a folder in the applications folder called "Microsoft Office 2008" or 2011. If that is the case, you obviously don't need both. Check your dock to see which icon matches up. The new Outlook icon or the older one. In either case, remove the icon, then drag the application Outlook into the dock. Be careful not to accidentally let go of the application onto the desktop instead of the dock as that would move the application or duplicate it. When you installed the new Microsoft office (assuming your using 2016 office) the installer should have removed the old version of Office. (the old microsoft office folder in the applications folder that is). If this did happen, then perhaps something else is going on.

On a brighter note, using multiple email programs doesn't really hurt you because your email and folders would sync to your email host anyway so whatever work you do in one email program would be reflected in the other as well. But I totally understand. Nobody wants to use two Outlooks!

I want to give my computer to my daughter.

one question, if I am passing down my laptop to my daughter should i just clean it up and back up to a zip drive? If there is more to it than that I’ll schedule an appointment w/you to handle that. if not, i will schedule an appointment with you when i get my new laptop and need a tutorial.
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Not really more to it. I would suggest don’t erase anything on your current laptop until you’ve transferred over everything you want to your new computer. Afterwards, the simplest way forward is to create a new user for your daughter, log into that user, then delete your old user from there. That will remove all your personal info and leave the applications and Operating system for her user.

Do I need more dropbox space?

Ive been getting a message for quite awhile now that my drop box is full and i need to pay to upgrade. It says its "stopped syncing".

Scotty didn't we set my system up so that drop box is a factor to how I work and save information? Do I need this upgrade?
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Most likely you have legitimately run out of dropbox space. It's common for people who use dropbox regularly to outgrow their 2 gigs FREE plan and have to pay for more cloud storage. To check for yourself, go to the top of the menu bar and click on the dropbox icon in the top right of your screen. Then choose the gear to the right.
Screen Shot 2018-08-17 at 7.53.05 PM

Clicking that gear will give you the percentage of what you are using of your plan. To upgrade your storage, go to dropbox.com and login then upgrade your plan from there.


Other things to consider: Dropbox does a sneaky thing where they will copy your pictures from Photos into your dropbox folder therefore taking up more cloud space. This is not nessasary. To ensure you are not duplicating pictures into dropbox, select the gear. Go to preferences, Import. Uncheck "enable camera uploads". Then return to your dropbox folder in the finder and remove the folder called "camera uploads". That sometimes eats away space we could otherwise be using for other documents.

You could also choose to use "selective sync". This is not the best choice for most users but it is available as an option. It tells the computer to only sync certain folders within the dropbox area. However, I think the best way to solve the issue is to simply buy more space.

Possibly downloaded a virus to my new iMac

I was on my new Mac this morning and went to download an xls spreadsheet to view in numbers. Upon downloading an adobe flash player update popped up. I assumed it was plausible given this is a new computer and may not have the most up to date flash player. All of the downloads and run windows all looked very familiar and legit. When I was done installing my computer made a loud beeping sound and said it has been infected by a virus. It opened a new window called Mac Repair and said I had 197 viruses on my computer that needed repair. It prompted me to hit the repair button in the window but I was highly skeptical at this point.

I went back into my downloads and found the recent adobe file I downloaded. I googled it - adobe flash player-2.dmg. It immediately popped up on blogs as a phishing virus. So I removed it to the trash can then emptied my trash can. I’m sure this is not the proper way to rid of this. Can please call or email to discuss further to clean my computer. Also, all of these virus related things keep coming from being on either Yahoo main page or news. Or thru my email on yahoo. I’ve never had these issues in the past until the recent 6 months or so. Is this common with Yahoo as of late?
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This is a very common occurrence unfortunately. Malware often disquises itself as flash, java, "security updates" or other words we are used to seeing. The good news is that just downloading a file doesn't hurt you. Double clicking on that file doesn't hurt you. But once it prompts you to install it, it HAS to ask for your computer's password. Entering your password is then what grants permission to your computer to install the malware. Most of the crapware is simply there to take over the ad space within webpages. They're usually not after personal information. They are just trying to sell ads in places on pages where google already does. If you feel like you may have entered your password and would like me to clean things off the computer, I can do that remotely for you. You/wife can schedule an online session.

What you saw with the loud sound and warning that you were "infected" was just an ad. The next time you land on one of those pages, close Safari, hold down the shift key and restart Safari. That will take you away from that ad site regardless of what background code was running on the page that wouldn't have let you move on to another page.

I can't save an attachment from an email.

Random question- I was at my Mac and in email and I tried to save a pdf from an email attachment into my files that you’ve helped me set up on the Mac. For some reason it won’t save - clearly I’m doing something wrong. Any tips?
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I'd first try to simply drag the attachment to the desktop. Moving something to the desktop gets it out of the application (in this case mail) and sometimes gives the computer a better handle on the file as you move it or do other things with it later.

Next you can try using the toolbar to download the attachment. Below you'll see a shot of the toolbar. Notice the paperclip denoting the email has one attachment.
Screen Shot 2018-08-05 at 3.41.48 PM

Another idea is to right click and save the attachment.

If none of these work, the next step I would try would be to log into the webmail account (for instance, iCloud.com or gmail.com) See if the attachment is retrievable there. If you still have issues with the attachment even on the webpage, then there's most likely a problem with the attachment. Request the sender resend.

I think My Grandpa deleted all my files.

Help. So I'm an idiot and hadn't backed my computer up yet (which I know you told me to do).. and somehow when I opened my computer today after not using it for a week, every single file on it has disappeared/been deleted. My grandpa recently took my old laptop, which didn't have any of the files from my current laptop on it and has been deleting files and clearing it out so he can use it. I don't know if it's related but I'm not sure how it could be since none of the files deleted were on it. But I'm wondering if you can tell me if there's any chance of getting them back or not.
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Often people accidentally log into the Guest account and since that account is empty, they think all their data is gone. Hopefully that's all that's going on. To check to see if you're in the guest account, go to the black apple at the top right corner of your screen, click on the black apple. If you see "Log out of Guest" at the bottom, you'll know you're in the wrong account. If you see your actual name instead, then things are a little more serious.

If your Grandfather took a computer that was logged in to your iCloud or Dropbox account and you kept all of your documents in your iCloud drive or dropbox, then there is a possibility that him deleting files could also cause the files to fall off of your own computer. We may still be able to recover them but we would want to act quickly. Dropbox only keeps deleted items for 30 days.

There is also another completely reasonable possibility that the files may just be in a folder we aren't aware of. Either way, I feel pretty confident that we can recover what you're looking for. But we would need to move sooner rather than later on that.

How can I clean up this virus?

Hey Scotty. You've helped us a number of times. My son tried to download a game on our Mac and it was apparently a virus. We're operating fine but in safari and chrome we keep getting unwanted pop up tabs. One just popped up with a dialogue box that reads "apple-virus-detectionservices.fixingit.solutions...". I reset chrome but no improvement and i'm not sure what else i need to reset or delete.
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I’ve seen it many many times unfortunately.  Removing these pests are a little more involved than I can write up in a set of instructions but it can be removed.  Happy to help if you feel the need.  You can schedule an online session if you’d like and I can remove it for you remotely.  There are about 8 methods that these programs tend to install and it’s just easier to go through the steps to check each one.  Feel free to schedule using the link below if needed.  If you’d rather work on the issue yourself, I’ve written about this exact thing several times on my website.  Those responses can be found at http://www.sellsconsulting.com/answers/index_files/category-viruses.php

ScreenTime

Screen Time: New feature in iOS 12.

Parents, lots to look forward to with the new ScreenTime feature coming to iOS 12 later this year. You'll be able to give your kids a limited amount of time to access certain apps. Finally!

More info here.

What's wrong with my printer?

I don’t know if you would be the right person to ask about this but I’m having trouble with my printer. It tells me ( or told me) to replace ink cartridges - I did - but it’s still not printing correctly and it also won’t pick up the wireless signal. I may need a new printer but maybe not ...
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With most printers there are a few things you can try. in the printer settings, there are usually a couple of different settings. You're looking for "restore network defaults" and/or "restore defaults". Anything close to that. Initiate those commands and it may bring the printer back to life. You can also try cleaning the print nozzles. There's a command for that in the software as well.

As far as the wireless issue goes, it can sometimes be the fault of the wireless network itself. You'd hate to buy a new printer just to find the same problem. The most common issue with printers not able to print wirelessly is that the wifi network has multiple instances of the same name. Or the network has been split into segments. ie: Sells Network 1, Sells Network 2, Sells Network Kitchen, Sells Network Basement. If the network router and repeaters are handling the home IP addresses incorrectly, you could have the printer on one network but your computer is on a different and they wouldn't be able to see each other.

Overall, the money you would use to pay me may be better suited to go toward a new printer. I feel that printers are usually for about 3-4 years then it's time to move on.

Get rid of unwanted extensions

How can I remove map frontier and their annoying ads?
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There are several possibilities as to why this is happening.

Open Safari and go to preferences. (under Safari in the menu bar)
Go to extensions in preferences and choose to uninstall any that you are not familiar with.
Under General in preferences, check to make sure your homepage is what you'd like it to be.

If this doesn't solve the issue, it may be slightly more complicated. But not too bad. Join me on a Monday night town hall and I'd be happy to finish it if removing the Safari extension doesn't do the trick.

How can I optimize my Mac?

Scotty-
Looking for a place with instructions on how I can run a optimization program or something on my MacBook Pro. This computer is getting old, is slowing down, and needs to be cleaned up. Disk Utility while running in normal mode doesn’t do much for it. Isn’t there a way to start the computer in something like Safe Mode and do a deep cleaning Disk Utility?
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Your hard drive may have an invisible partition on it that will allow you to boot into Recovery mode. You can find this out by holding down the Option key at start up. If your computer has a recovery partition, you will be able to select it there. After in Recovery Mode, you can open disk utility and choose to repair the disk from there. This will allow for a more thorough job than running disk utility while in the OS itself. However, this may not help your cause. There are a few other reasons you might want to consider as well. I have an article on those here.

Safe mode is different. Safe mode can be triggered by holding down the Shift key at start up. What this does is keep non indigenous processes from running at all. So if you had a piece of software causing problems like a Flash plugin or Norton, etc… it would prevent that from running therefore allowing only factory OS processes. It's a good way to trouble shoot third party issues. The problem is, Safe mode is a very limited mode. There are many things your computer can not do when in safe mode. So it's not a mode you want to work in for long. Graphics processes are extremely limited also so your computer will feel very slow while in it.

I do not recommend any "optimizing" software. These usually just add yet more completely unnecessary processes to the running list. The best thing, in my opinion, is to understand how your mac works, what processes are running in the background, the age of your machine vs. the OS's age, what role cache files play in certain programs, etc… Always backup before doing anything. Time machine is great. Be sure it's running.

I may be able to help with cleaning things up remotely if you feel the need. Remote sessions can be scheduled on the homepage of my site here.

Why does my computer get slow?

Scotty-

Why does my computer get slow? Do I have too much stuff on it?
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A common misconception is that computers get slow because their hard drive has too much stuff on it. This is rarely the case. My general rule is that you should be concerned about the amount of data you have on your internal hard drive once you get below 10% capacity of that drive. Modern operating systems are able to move data around on the drive so that it can best perform when asked to pull up a file or program. The days of "defraging" a hard drive are gone. Computers do this automatically now.

Computers get "slow" because we update them. When we update computers, the hardware is then asked to run software that was written for current spec hardware. Just like phones, as we update, the computer struggles more and more with each update, to keep up with the current software demands. If we never updated our devices, the speed experience would change very little throughout the device's life. The problem is, we always want the new feature. So we update. When you compare this continuing sloping model to say the video game industry, a terraced model, you can see a big difference. No one ever says "my xbox is running slow. My playstation is running slow". This is because the video game industry works on a different model. They build hardware meant to last for almost a decade. The software updates and games developed are always written and optimized for the very first build of that hardware. In other words, if you buy a video game in 2018 for a gaming system, you are buying a game that was written for a piece of hardware that came out possibly 5 or 6 years ago. In this model, profit is based on selling software that runs on hardware.

The computer industry is opposite. Their profit is based on hardware that runs software. So it is in their interest to encourage you to buy new hardware.

Another reason computers run slow is because they may have started running processes in the background you are unaware of such as Photos Library facial recognition, Flash content, never ending indexing loops, etc… And easy way to see what's going on in the background is to open Activity Monitor and sort processes by CPU percentage. Keep in mind there are two categories of processes. Yours and the computers. You can kill any of the processes that are your own but be cautious killing system processes. You can get into trouble there. General rule: if you don't understand what it means, leave it alone. Another thing to consider here is that just because you find the process eating up major resources and kill it, doesn't mean it won't just come back later. There are many reasons a process might start without you knowing. Too many to describe here.

The last major reason a computer starts to slow is because the spinning hard drive could be failing. But you would usually know that pretty quickly as it would start showing other symptoms like not being able to boot, locking up constantly, or making clicking sounds.

Which router is best?

Which router should I buy for my 3000 sq ft home?
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I suggest one of two options…

1: two Airport Extremes with the option to add other extenders later. ($200 per device) $400 total hardware.
2: Netgear’s Orbi system. $300
Amazon.com: NETGEAR Orbi Whole Home Mesh WiFi System with Tri-band – Wireless router and extender replacement, maximize WiFi speed and range, Up to 5000 sqft, 3pk (RBK33): Computers & Accessories

Apple may be leaving the router business. I think they’re great routers but just like to be open about their future. That said, the Orbi router system is gaining traction. I’m happy with them as well.

3: Another consideration is the Netgear Nighthawk. This router has many features that most users will not use. It's a very strong router but with only one source.

Why aren't my calendars syncing?

I hope this is an easy fix - seems that every since I did all of that upgrading, when I put something on my desktop calendar, it does not go onto my phone. (If I put something on my phone, it does go onto my desktop, however.)

I just went to system preferences - and turned on iCloud Drive, but that didn’t seem to work. Not sure if I should have turned that on….

Seems like something just needs to be turned on, but I am not sure what.
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Calendars can be very confusing. The main reason for this is that almost every email account service we use (gmail, iCloud, aol, exchange, yahoo, etc…) all offer their own calendar and contact syncing to go along with the email. Because of this, sometimes we end up adding events to one calendar but don't have that that calendar on a different device. So the first place to start looking when troubleshooting calendars is to figure out which calendar services you actually need. In a perfect world, one service is the best way to go. For most people this is either iCloud or Gmail's calendar system.

1. On your Mac, open system preferences/internet accounts. Select each account and see if calendars is checked. You will return to this area eventually and uncheck the services you don't want in the end.
2. Open Calendar on your mac and go to preferences, check which is your default calendar. This can be the issue as well. You may be adding an event automatically to the wrong calendar.
3. On your phone, go to the Calendar app, select Calendars at the bottom of the screen and see if you have the same accounts active on your phone as you saw on your computer.
4. Decide if you can eliminate some of these calendars but be aware that if you turn off, say your gmail calendar, then any events on that calendar will go away. So you may have to move those events from one calendar to a different one before you turn that calendar off.

These are good starting points to check. It's rare that calendar and contact issues are technical problems like software issues. It's much more common that we just don't have things set the way we'd like.

My email isn't coming in on my Mac

You were at our house today. I just got on my Mac and my email is no longer pulling up.

Can you walk me through how to put it back on? I used the password that I have had for a long time and it isn’t working.
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I actually didn’t change anything on your Mac so this is a separate issue from what we covered yesterday concerning your devices.  If your carolina.rr.com email is not functioning on your Mac, first step is to verify that your password is correct.  Go to webmail.carolina.rr.com and log in to make sure you have the correct password.  

After you’ve verified your password, next go under the black apple on your computer (top left corner) and open system preferences.  Next go to Internet Accounts and select your Carolina account on the left side.  You may be prompted to enter your password.  That step may solve the issue. 

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 If not, take the next step. In your Mail, under the word Mail in the menu bar, select Preferences:

Screen Shot 2018-02-21 at 8.48.48 AM


Next, select Accounts at the top of that window, select the Carolina account to the left, then server settings as seen below:

Screen Shot 2018-02-21 at 8.50.24 AM

Re enter the password (that you verified earlier) and that should solve the issue.  


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