Second Yosemite update looms: Wi-Fi fixes, iCloud Drive in Time Machine and more

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 26, 2015

Despite all the talk of a problematic decline in software quality, Apple is feeling your pain and isn’t standing still.

Currently in testing, a second update to OS X Yosemite is due later this week. First of all, Mac OS X 10.10.2 apparently squashes that annoying bug which manifests itself annoyingly as intermittent Wi-Fi issues.

Another one resolves a bug preventing your Mac from reconnecting to a Wi-Fi network after waking from sleep, causing you to manually disable and re-enable Wi-Fi, which gets old fast.

Next, iCloud Drive should be now accessible directly in Time Machine, including the ability to track changes to files and documents.

Moreover, 10.10.2 prevents the so-called ‘Thunderstrike’ hardware exploit which targets Macs equipped with high-bandwidth Thunderbolt ports and also includes other important fixes. Read More

 

How to jailbreak iOS 8.1.2 using Mac OS X

By Jeff Benjamin on Jan 18, 2015

It is now possible to jailbreak iOS 8.1.2 using a Mac, and this has been confirmed by iDownloadBlog. Up until this point, no Mac option existed for jailbreaking iOS 8.1.2, but that is no longer the case. A new tool entitled PP jailbreak for Mac has surfaced, allowing Mac users to enjoy what Windows users have been enjoying for some time now. Inside, we have a tutorial that shows how to jailbreak iOS 8.1.2 using OS X with the PP jailbreak for Mac. Read More

 

How to enable key repeats on your Mac

By Timothy Reavis on Jan 14, 2015

One thing I’ve always liked about Macs is their secondary keys, where holding down a letter key will display variations of that letter, like holding down “u” to get “ü.” This comes in handy when spelling non-English words, but if that’s not something you ever do, Apple’s substitution of special characters for the traditional key repeats of Windows computers can be an unneeded – and perhaps unwanted – feature.

The good news is that there’s a simple way to take control and change the behavior of long key presses to accommodate your needs. This not only works with letters, but number keys as well. Read More

 

Analyst: Apple could make its own A-Series chip for Mac in coming years

By Jake Smith on Jan 14, 2015

KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo released a research note on Wednesday discussing the current state of Apple’s chip supply. Not only does the noted analyst see Apple diversifying its chip suppliers, but also sees the company making its own A-series chip for its MacBook line, like it does for the iPhone and iPad. Read More

 

Poll: should iOS 9 pause on innovation?

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 12, 2015

Earlier in the month, Instapaper creator and Tumblr co-founder Marco Arment offered a scathing critique of Apple’s declining software quality. I generally disagree with Marco on most topics he blogs about, but this time he got me thinking that Apple’s “it just works” mantra no longer applies. And as software woes continue to persist, the problem clearly is much larger than the relatively benign Maps debacle.

From that botched iOS 8.0.1 update, delayed improvements and an over-the-air iOS 8 installer requiring a whopping 4.6 gigabytes of free space to a bunch of issues plaguing OS X 10.10 Yosemite such as performance bottlenecks, its insatiable resource requirements, ridiculous Apple Mail hiccups, intermittent Wi-Fi issues and more – the firm appears to have “lost the functional high ground,” as Arment put it.

And with plenty of far-reaching technologies being introduced simultaneously — Handoff, iCloud Drive, custom keyboards, photo and storage extensions, new ways to share content, HealthKit, HomeKit, WatchKit and CloudKit, to mention but a few — small wonder Apple is finding itself in the middle of a pretty rocky transition, to say the least.

Throw in things like iCloud and CarPlay and suddenly diminishing software quality exhibited in the latest releases of iOS and Mac OS X becomes a major customer pain point. Apple is an aspirational brand so winning back user trust is paramount.

So, what should Tim Cook & Co. do? Do they continue to stick to the annual OS release schedule? Or should they give engineers enough time to smooth out the rough edges and ship software when it’s ready rather than for their marketing benefits, even if it means making us wait longer for latest and greatest software innovations? Read More

 

Spotlight bug exposes your Mac’s IP address and more to spammers

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 9, 2015

An unusual oversight in how OS X’s Spotlight feature handles privacy settings in Apple Mail leaves the door open to spammers, phishers and online tracking companies who can obtain private data such as your IP address, current operating system version, browser details and more, whenever an email message is previewed in Spotlight.

First discovered by German technology news site Heise, the bug takes advantage of a common information harvesting technique and a Mail setting which determines whether or not the program loads remote content in emails. Read More

 

Research: Yosemite close to 50 percent of OS X installs in two months

By Jake Smith on Jan 8, 2015

Apple’s model of releasing new versions of OS X for free seems to be working, as analytics vendor Net Applications reports steady growth for the two month old OS X Yosemite. According to the research firm, OS X Yosemite now accounts for 45 percent of all instances of OS X it tracks, closing in on the halfway mark. Read More

 

How to enable text selection in OS X’s Quick Look

By Timothy Reavis on Jan 7, 2015

Anyone who has used a Mac for more than a minuscule amount of time has more than likely come across Quick Look, the pop-up window that is invoked with a press of the space bar when a file or folder is highlighted on the desktop or in Finder. Quick Look’s usefulness becomes evident when file names aren’t descriptive enough by allowing users to view the contents of many different types of files without having to open them in a full-fledged application like Pages for documents or Preview for images.

By default Quick Look can only display a static view of a file that only grants users a peek at the contents without any real function. Imagine, however, being able to copy a document’s text without having to open it in TextEdit or Pages. This is incredibly useful in a variety of situations, from dealing with templates to Word documents to code snippets, where having multiple applications and documents opened shouldn’t be necessary for copying from one location and pasting to another. The good news is that this functionality is completely possible and perfectly easy to enable. Read More

 

Apple releases NTP security update for OS X users, addresses ‘critical security issue’

By Jake Smith on Dec 22, 2014

Apple released a security update on Monday for Mac users, addressing a “critical security issue” with the Network Time Protocol service on OS X Yosemite, Mavericks, and Mountain Lion. The update weighs in at 2.1MB, and you can find download links after the break.  Read More

 

Apple seeds Safari 8.0.3 beta for OS X Yosemite to developers

By Jake Smith on Dec 17, 2014

Apple seeded Safari 8.0.3 for Yosemite to developers on Wednesday, along with Safari 7.1.3 beta for Mavericks and Safari 6.2.3 for Mountain Lion. The new version of Safari joins the new OS X 10.10.2 beta that was released to developers last Friday. Read More

 

Apple posts Safari updates for OS X Yosemite, Mavericks and Mountain Lion

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 11, 2014

After releasing then pulling a update for the desktop Safari browser on OS X last week, Apple on Thursday posted Safari 8.0.2 for Yosemite.

In addition to allowing Yosemite users to import username and passwords from Mozilla’s Firefox browser, Safari 8.0.2 fixes a few annoying issues, among them history not syncing across devices if iCloud Drive is disabled and another one prevent a saved password from being autofilled after two devices are added to iCloud Keychain.

The update is available through the Mac App Store’s Updates tab. A standalone installer should be available shortly from the Apple Support website. Safari 7.1.2 for OS X Mavericks and Safari 6.2.2 for OS X Mountain Lion were also released on Thursday. Read More

 

Good deal: 78% off Parallels 10 and 1Password Mac software bundle

By Cody Lee on Nov 25, 2014

Good news Mac owners, the Parallels team is running another one of its popular software bundle promotions, meaning you can score some great software at a steep discount. This week’s bundle includes 7 Mac applications, offered at 78% off their original prices.

Headlining apps in the bundle are Parallels Desktop 10 and 1Password. Parallels is hands-down our favorite virtual machine software for running Windows on a Mac, and AgileBits’ 1Password made the top of our list of best password manager apps for Mac and iOS. Read More

 

How to stop iTunes from automatically syncing when you connect your iPhone

By Sébastien Page on Nov 5, 2014

A couple weeks after getting my new iMac, I am still tweaking the preferences of many applications so they work the way I want them to. I recently shared a way to stop iPhoto from automatically launching when you plug your iPhone in, and today, I will share with you a similar tip to stop iTunes from automatically syncing when you connect your iPhone. As often with these specific settings, the solution is simple but it might not always be obvious to everyone.

There are actually two ways to go at it. The first method is device-specific, meaning that you can tell iTunes not to sync when a specific device (ie. your iPhone) is being plugged in. The other method works with any iOS device you plug in. Read More

 

How to show or hide filename extensions in OS X Yosemite

By Sébastien Page on Oct 29, 2014

I’m still tweaking my new iMac so it behaves the way I want it to. While all my main apps have been installed and set up as needed, there is still all these little things that need to be finetuned. One of those things is file extensions.

By default, OS X hides the extensions of filenames. I imagine this is made to simplify the view for casual users, and I’m totally fine with that. However, I like to see the extensions of files on my desktop or in Finder, which allows me to use files differently depending on their extensions.

In this post, I will show you how to hide or show the extensions of filenames on a Mac in OS X Yosemite. Read More

 

Apps like Pocket is why Handoff is my top new feature in iOS 8 and Yosemite

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 28, 2014

Pocket, a read-later service, with a recent Mac app update has completed its support for Apple’s refreshed mobile and desktop operating systems.

According to developers last week, Pocket for Mac now includes Handoff and can send stuff to other apps that use the Mac’s new multi-purpose Share menu. It’s Pocket’s largest Mac update in over a year.

The iOS edition of Pocket has had Handoff support in place for weeks. And with Handoff now live in the Mac edition of Pocket, I’m not sure how I’ve managed to do without such a useful feature. I’m a huge, huge Pocket fan and use it every day to bookmark and save dozens of articles that I find during the day for later reading.

With Handoff implemented in both Pocket editions, I now am able to seamlessly continue reading an article right where I left off on any of my Apple devices (Bluetooth must be enabled).

It’s awesome and I couldn’t imagine my daily computing without Handoff. It’s the one feature I use the most, all the time. As I constantly move between my mobile and desktop devices, Handoff removes the friction completely without the mental burden of having to remember where I left off.

Handoff is tremendously convenient. It’s fun, easy to use, a time-saver and bridges the gap between desktop and mobile like no other technology before it. And it’s only getting started.

Pocket for Mac is available free of charge in the Mac App Store. Read More

 

How to stop OS X Yosemite from asking for a password after waking your Mac

By Sébastien Page on Oct 28, 2014

I just got my all new iMac with Retina 5K display last week and I’m still going through all the settings to have it behave the way I want. One thing I noticed is that every time it goes to sleep or the screen saver kicks in, my Mac will require me to enter my user password when I wake it up.

What is a great security feature if you work in an office is somewhat of an annoyance to me, simply because I work from home and no one except my wife ever gets to touch my computer, making this password an extra step that I don’t need.

In this post, I’ll show you how to stop OS X Yosemite from requiring a password after waking up your Mac. Read More

 

How to extract OS X app icons

By Jeff Benjamin on Oct 25, 2014

OS X is known for its beautiful interface and beautiful app icons. It’s one of the things that really separates it from Windows and its bland look (although Windows has made significant strides in this regard as well).

At iDB, we often use app icon images as feature images for our posts, and videos. Fortunately, OS X makes it extremely easy to copy the app icons from all of our favorites apps, and export them as standalone images. In the following video walkthrough, I’ll show you how to do just that. Read More

 

Helvetica Neue typeface replaces Lucida Grande as the system font in OS X Yosemite

By Jeff Benjamin on Oct 20, 2014

One of the most striking changes that you will notice when you first fire up OS X Yosemite is the system-wide font change. Apple’s previous desktop operating system releases, since 1999, used Lucida Grande as the system font.

Lucida Grande worked well on lower resolution screens, but as high resolution Retina Displays become more common, it’s starting to look out of place. To address the issue, Apple decided to adopt iOS’ system font of choice—Helvetica Neue—and make it the system font for OS X Yosemite. Read More

 

‘iStat Mini’ widget places system stats in OS X Yosemite’s Notification Center

By Jeff Benjamin on Oct 19, 2014

As I discussed on Let’s Talk iOS episode 39, Bjango’s iStat Menus is one of my favorite Mac apps. It’s an app that places a wealth of system status information right in the Mac’s menu bar.

The same folks behind iStat Menus have come up with a new app geared towards OS X Yosemite. The app, which is cleverly entitled iStat Mini, places a simple widget in Notification Center’s Today View.

Like its big brother, iStat Mini allows you to quickly view the CPU usage, disk usage, and memory usage on your Mac. It also allows you to monitor your Mac’s upstream and downstream bandwidth.

Have a look at our 4K ultra-high resolution video walkthrough after the break for more details.

Read More

 

Wunderlist for iOS gets 1Password integration, Mac app gains Handoff, Today widget and more

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 17, 2014

Wunderlist, an increasingly popular cross-platform to-do and task manager by German developer 6Wunderkinder, got updated both for iOS and OS X with cool new features.

The iOS edition now includes support for 1Password signing and the ability to see your to-dos in iCal while fixing UI issues on iPad and more.

The Mac edition has received a substantial Yosemite-ready refresh adding a more productive Today widget in the Notification Center, interactive push alerts, a more powerful “Add to Wunderlist” feature along with the complete Handoff experience for seamless moving between devices and more. Read More

 
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