Answers...

to commonly asked questions.

USB adapters

What adapters do I need to connect my old display and usb devices to my 2018 MacBook Pro?
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USB to USB-C:

Amazon.com: Syntech USB C to USB Adapter [2-Pack], Thunderbolt 3 to USB 3.0 Adapter Compatible MacBook Pro 2018/2017, MacBook Air 2018, Pixel 3, Dell XPS, and More Type-C Devices: Computers & Accessories
That allows you to use old USB devices with your USB-C only computer. You plug those on the end of a USB cable then into your computer.

minidisplayport to USB-C:

Amazon.com: USB-C to Mini DisplayPort Adapter, ITD ITANDA 4K Thunderbolt 3 to Mini DP Adapter Cable for Apple New MacBook 2017, ChromeBook Pixel Samsung S8: Electronics

This device allows you to connect your monitor to your new computer (if you’ve not yet gotten a monitor adapter)

iCloud Drive desktop documents sync

Apple has been chasing the success and functionality of Dropbox for some time and their latest iteration, iCloud drive, is not an equal either. I do not recommend using desktop and documents sync. Like Filevault, they are trying to get you to implement it by default but it turns things into a big mess. For 20 years your desktop and documents folder have resided in the Home directory. Now Apple makes those folders invisible and places aliases into the iCloud directory. This means if you don't see that coming, you'll most likely be very confused as to where everything went.

I get a lot of complaints "where did all my stuff go?" This also causes your desktop to continuously sync with the cloud which means you pay a price in performance. If you are working locally on a project that lives temporarily on your desktop, as many of us do, now the computer is split between syncing to the cloud and you working on the file. Imagine trying to cut video that lives in the dropbox folder. Not a good way of doing things.

Apple will continue to improve iCloud functionality and it will most likely surpass dropbox at some point, but for now, stay away from it.

FileVault Sucks

FileVault:

For the love of God, turn off FileVault. It is nothing but a deep dark pit of pain and misery.

How to show all albums in Photos

my current Artwork folder in my photos is missing since we worked on my computer.... the old file with the same title is there but my current one I have all my photos of paintings for work has vanished. Do you know where I can try and recover it... this is an important work folder i use for my business. Thanks in advance

IMG_3016

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The first thing I would try is to actually show all the albums in the left column of the Application. To do this, open Photos then stretch the window out as wide as you can. You can also try clicking the green button in the top left corner of the scree. That should reveal the left side column. Within that column, you will be able to see all the albums that are contained within Photos itself. You may also see folders with small triangles that you can click on in order to see the contents of those folders. Your particular album could be contained in one of those folders. Let me know if you see what you're looking for there. If not, we can look other places as well.
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Scams Galore!

There's a very big trend on the rise. More and more, clients are being tricked into giving up their own information. They think they're logging into a site they trust when they're actually handing over their private info. Here's a recent example of the bad guys strategy.

You might receive an email that looks like it's from Apple pretending to want you to check your account.

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At first glance it looks like you're being charge for an App. That's designed to get you to let your guard down and click the link. It looks like they're trying to "help" you. No!

If you click the right side of the email address in the From field, it will reveal who the email is REALLY from:

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So you fall for it and click the link. It takes you to a site that looks like this:

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This looks exactly like the real front door to icloud.com. However if you look closer at the url bar at the top you can see it's not Apple. Someone has set up a page to look just like an Apple page with the hope that you'll enter your AppleID and password. They then have access to your account.

The bottom line here is while clicking a link in an email by itself is not going to hurt you, it's what you do once that next site opens. Just don't click links from emails that you weren't expecting. If you are concerned about an email, just type the website in to a browser yourself. Don't trust that a link is taking you to the correct place.

Do I need the Outlook app?

Hi! I have tried saving your contact twice To my address book and it wont save. Weird. Also, my outlook won’t work on my phone. It isn’t pulling my contacts or giving me Hotmail.
And last, I may need your help on photo thing.
Don’t want to mess it up.
Are these things you can help via text or should I reschedule? Or something I can find answers to in your website?
Thanks!
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There are many services that allow your phone to save contacts. iCloud, hotmail, aol, yahoo, gmail, etc… They all want to store your contacts so it can be very confusing.

As for the screenshots, you don’t have to use Outlook to check your hotmail account. Hotmails is owned by microsoft and they’d prefer you use the Outlook app but you can use the built in mail app just as well.

In regard to iPhoto, yes, I had mentioned that moving from 10.9 to 10.14 would take you from the old “brown” iPhoto to the newer rainbow Photos. Your pictures are not gone. You’d just need to use the iPhoto Upgrader tool found here:

Using the iPhoto Library Upgrader tool - Apple Support
If you’d like to give that a try on your own.

Otherwise, I’m happy to assist with all of the above.

Is Mojave ready?

Are you wanting us all to upgrade to Mojave or wait. I’ve been looking for a memo from you on this but have not seen one yet.
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As of today, 10/24/18 Mojave is still in its .0 release. 10.14.0 So stay away until at least the .1 update which should be any day. They've done about 5 updates in the Beta in the last two weeks prior to issuing 10.14.1 so I'd say next week will be fine.

Is Mac Auto Fixer legit?

Scotty, everytime I reboot this app pops up. It looks pretty phony. So what I do is “force quit” since I cannot otherwise close out of it. Is Mac Auto Fixer legit? Ideas? Thanks
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No. This is not legit. There are several places this pest could live that would cause it to reopen when you restart.

Remove any items from the following areas other than Dropbox and possibly other products that you do prefer to launch and run in the background. Most of the time that is only Dropbox.

1: Open system preferences: Users and Groups: Login Items (click any item in that list then remove using the minus key in the bottom corner of the window)


2: A little more technical…

Remove all items from the following folders:

Macintosh HD/Library/Startup Items
Macintosh HD?Library/LaunchAgents
Macintosh HD/Library/LaunchDameons

3: Next, you'll need to check the hidden library folder but going into the Menu bar at the top of the screen, Select Go, hold down the option key to see the new choice "Library".
That will give you access to the next place to look. ~/Library/LaunchAgents Remove any items in that folder.

4. Lastly, check your Applications folder and toss out any Application that looks similar to Mac Auto Fixer.

Restart and you should be good to go. Some of these types of crapware can invade your browser as well but in this case, unlikely. Let me know if you need further assistance.

Fix "macOS needs to repair your library" issue.

I keep gettin this error that macOS needs to repair your library to run applications no applications will start up.
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This issue is most likely related to a permissions issue. You will use terminal to solve the issue. First you'll need to learn your username and group name. Use the following commands to get them:

id -u
id -g

Once you have the username and group name, next plug them in to the following command lines:

sudo chown -R user ~/Library
sudo chgrp -R group name ~/Library

Restart

My email is down

Scotty why aren't I getting my email on my phone and my iPad? I changed my password on my computer but now it doesn't work on them.
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When you change your password on one device, it doesn't automatically sync that new password to your other devices. That would defeat the purpose of changing a password. If someone steals your device, then you change your password to lock them out of that email account, you wouldn't want that stolen device to automatically get the new password.

To resolve the issue, go to the mail app on each device (phone and iPad) and look at your inbox. You'll notice a very small blue link at the bottom saying something like "incorrect details" or similar. Click that link at the very bottom and it will prompt you to enter the new password for the email account.

I'm out of space on my computer.

I am out of space on my computer because my IPhoto is so large. What is the best way for me to handle this? Should I move some of the Photos permanently to a couple hard drives? What do you think of Drop Box? I obviously want to make sure I don’t lose the photos so need to back them up a couple different ways.

Thanks
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In this case, Dropbox will not solve this issue. Your pictures will still live locally on your drive as well as Dropbox's cloud. No good. There are a couple of ways to deal with this. It is a very common problem. I break the solutions down into age groups. If you'r under 30 you generally just trust the cloud and don't feel the need to store actual copies of your pictures on your local hard drive. If you're over 30 then you feel better having the actual pictures on your computer. Problem is, that takes up space.

Under 30 crowd uses iCloud Photo Library to push all their pictures to the cloud then they choose both on their phone's AND computers to "optimize" picture storage. This means that your computer only keeps thumbnail versions of your pictures and downloads each picture every time you want to look at it. Your phone has been doing this for a couple of years already. The only real issue with this method is that if you are offline, you can't get to the full resolution versions of your pictures.

Over 30 crowd has a few choices. 1. Get a bigger hard drive. 2. Get an external hard drive that would be dedicated to storing the ENTIRE photos library and would need to always need to remain connected whenever you look at your pictures.

The Under 30 method is scary but probably the best choice for anyone using a laptop computer where the internal hard drive is not larger enough to store full res copies of all the pictures.

It's a little more involved than what I've explained here but this is a rough draft of your choices.

How to stop text messages on your computer.

Can u please tell me how to remove my texts from my computers, they are popping up on my screen now!
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Sounds like you are logged into the messages service on your mac. To stop receiving messages on your computer, go into the Applications folder and find the application called "messages". You can also do this by using the magnifying glass in the top right corner of your computer screen called spotlight. Once you've opened messages, look under the word "messages" in the top left corner of your screen in the menu bar and find preferences. Next select the Accounts tab then uncheck "Enable this account."

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Future text messages will no longer appear on your mac.

Note that previous text messages will still be there but no longer updating.

Can I monitor my child's xBox?

Is there a way to track xbox use?
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There are parental controls built in to the xBox itself and Microsoft can provide weekly report to devices associated to devices logged in to your child's account.

https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/12441/microsoft-account-see-child-device-activity

https://www.pcworld.com/article/3187568/gaming/how-to-limit-xbox-one-screen-time-for-your-kids.html

Have I been hacked?

Is it possible my MacBook air is hacked? Two days in a row around the same time (6 a.m) my mouse was “taken over” meaning I couldn’t control it and immediately shut computer down, now I pulled up my mail and before it “straightened itself out” all my mail headers were in kyrillic (russian writing?) Otherwise it’s been operating normally
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That does sound like odd behavior. One of the crucial factors here would be if you saw your mouse moving around on the screen and things being clicked as you watched. For a computer to be "taken over" that would insinuate that someone was controlling it remotely using a piece of software such as TeamViewer, AnyDesk, Zoom, or GoToMeeting. You would have also needed to grant permission for either of those in the past by having entered your computer's Admin password at some point then left elements of one of those applications running so someone could log in remotely. While I definitely have seen this behavior (just this week with another client) it is very rare that someone would get that far.

As for the different language appearing, I don't have an explanation for that. One guess could be that there's a problem with the graphics card of the computer as it tries to display characters. (doubtful) Another guess is that there's a problem with the operating system causing the fonts or characters to display incorrectly. (also doubtful)

The most interesting piece of evidence is the fact that it happens consistently at 6am. There are small programs or procedures that run on our computers called chronscripts. These procedures usually run when the computer is left open all night. These are healthy tasks a computer does in the background to keep our computers organized. Think of them as a background cleanup. They don't run during times when you're using your computer. It is possible one of these chronscripts is damaged and causing that behavior.

I've given several explanations to things but to give you piece of mind I would be happy to address the issue remotely or in person. Most of the time, in my experience people feel they've been "hacked" or their privacy violated when often there's a different reason a certain behavior has occurred. However, that's not to say that this doesn't happen. I've seen it plenty for many many reasons. Just this week I worked with a client who was tricked into paying a very large amount of money ($2000) because they through they were talking with Apple support on the phone and the person thought their computer was locked and the only way to unlock it was to pay this person on the phone. It was only an ad on a webpage that got them to that point.

Please let me know if you have any additional questions. You could also take a screenshot of the Russian language and share it with me. command+option+4 then drag a square around what you'd like to share. The screenshot will land on your desktop and you can email it.

Can I move to Mojave?

Can my Mac go to Mojave 10.14?
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Apple seems to have cut off all macs prior to 2012. This leaves a 6 year window. This is more narrow than past OS requirements. Here's a list of supported Macs.

What is High Efficiency format?

Why is my phone saying this?
IMG_1352
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This is a setting is iOS 11 and later that changes the image format to store more information in less space. Think of it as jpg+. Standard pictures are taken in jpeg. Apple has a new compression method that allows the same quality in less space. However, it is possible that this new format could be causing your problems for your outgoing pictures. We can set it back by going into Settings/Camera/Formats. Then choose most compatible.

https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT207022

How do I backup my pictures?

Are my pictures backing up? How do I backup my pictures?
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I like for people to have 2 backups of their photos. One on an external hard drive handled by Time Machine (the software that lives on your computer) and the second backup would be offsite. This can either be an additional hard drive or, in most cases, people use iCloud to backup their entire iCloud photo library. I feel having two backups (time machine as well as iCloud) while redundant gives us peace of mind. I’m an old man and I don’t trust the cloud completely.

To see that your recent time machine drive has completed, click on the clock in the top right area of your computer and you should see a date stating the most recent backup.

To see if your pictures are in the cloud, there are several settings you need to check first.


1. on your phone and/or iPad under settings select your name at the very top. Then iCloud. Then photos. You’ll want to have iCloud Photo library turned on. Optimize storage turned on. Photo Stream turned on. Photo sharing turned on.

2. On your Computer, open Photos. Go to preferences under the word Photos in the top left of your computer and select iCloud. Be sure iCloud Photo library is checked, Download Originals is on, Photo stream is on. iCloud Photo sharing is on.


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Using iCloud photo library would require you to have enough space in the cloud if you choose to use this service. 50 gigs for $12 a year. 200 gigs for $36 a year. etc… However, if you prefer not to pay for cloud storage then time machine is just fine as a backup. Some people do run into the issue that they don’t have enough space on their computers to store their entire library of photos and therefore either have to fully trust the cloud, buy a new computer with a larger hard drive, or get an external drive dedicated to media (photos). I don’t think you are in this market. I just like to mention it for other readers as well. (this answer will be posted on my website as well).

Feel free to send specific pictures to me and I’ll narrow down what’s going on.

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.
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