Davao Mac User

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MacTracker helps identify your Mac

Christopher Breen of Macworld magazine got a Mac 911 question from a reader who wanted to know what is the maximum amount of RAM his MacBook can hold.

“It depends on which MacBook you have,” Breen replies, and recommends a free utility called MacTracker. He then briefly outlines who to use MacTracker to check for the maximum amount of RAM a given Mac can hold.

Aside from the above tip, MacTracker also lets you check your Macs general info, specs, and history. The catalogue is not restricted to just Macs; it also lets you check other Apple devices like iPods, iPhones, Apple TV, displays, etc…

MacTracker is one nifty app and a very good reference utility for those interested in knowing most, if not all, of the products that Apple has made.

Again, MacTracker is free and the author, Ian Page, is asking for donations to support future development.

[source: Macworld]
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Filed under: third-party,

New iPhone ads

This week Apple posted three new ads for the iPhone: Check, Fix, and Read.

Each ad features third-party applications that can be downloaded from the App Store. The apps featured in the commercials are:

  • Check: Snow Reports, Lose It, and G-Park
  • Fix: Rocket Taxi, Tipulator, and MultiLevel
  • Read: Yelp, OsiriX, and Classics
  • All the ads ends with “There’s an app for just about anything. Only on the iPhone.”

    You can watch these three new ads, as well as the previous ones, at Apple’s iPhone 3G ad gallery site.

    Filed under: iPhone

    Apple’s iLife ’09 Hardware Up-to-Date Program

    The iLife ’09 Hardware Up-to-Date Program lets you upgrade to iLife ’09 for only $9.95 if you have purchased a qualifying computer on or after January 6, 2009, that does not include iLife ’09.

    Program ends on March 28, 2009.

    More at Apple’s iLife ’09 Hardware Up-to-Date Program site.

    [Source: TUAW]

    Filed under: iLife

    13-inch White MacBook updated; better processor and graphics chip

    Last week, Apple quietly updated their most affordable MacBook, the 13-inch white polycarbonate MacBook. It now sports the same processor and graphics chip with that of the $1,299 (Php71,990.00 at the Philippine Apple Online Store) 13-inch aluminium unibody MacBook. The white MacBook also had a RAM upgrade; default is now 2GB from what used to be 1GB.

    The $999 (Php55,990.00) white MacBook is an excellent option for those who are looking to save $300.

    Though the white MacBook now has the same 2.0 GHz Core 2 Duo and NVIDIA GeFroce 9400M chips with that of the unibody MacBook, it doesn’t mean the latter is not worth considering.

    MacWorld’s Peter Cohen in his article cites the differences between the white and aluminium MacBooks:

    The more expensive aluminum-clad MacBook features faster memory—1,066MHz DDR3 SDRAM, compared to 667MHz DDR2 SDRAM. It also has a hard disk drive that’s one-third larger than the drive on the $999 model—160GB, versus 120GB. You also have the option of getting a Solid State Disk (SSD) drive on the aluminum MacBook, something you can’t buy for the $999 model. And that Mini DisplayPort interface is compatible with Apple’s new 24-inch LED Cinema Display, which won’t work with the white MacBook.

    But the white MacBook does have its advantages:

    …especially for Mac users who have already made an investment in some camcorders and external storage devices: It’s the only MacBook in Apple’s lineup that still has a FireWire port. The white MacBook features a FireWire 400 connector, making it compatible with myriad standard-definition camcorders, hard drives and other devices that have shipped since the late 1990s. The white MacBook also features a mini-DVI jack, meaning that connecting it to a DVI or VGA-equipped display is markedly less expensive than having to buy the Mini DisplayPort adapter required for the aluminum MacBook. Apple sells the mini-DVI adapters for $19 each, while its Mini DisplayPort equivalents are priced at $29.

    If you are planning to get a Mac portable, the white MacBook is worthy of consideration. With the money you can save by foregoing the unibody MacBook, you can buy an external drive or buy a 2.5-inch drive to make up for the 40GB difference. The other differences, the faster memory, SSD, and MiniDisplayPort, are in my opinion, of lesser importance. The new graphics chip, as shown in previous benchmarks, will perhaps be more than up to the task when it comes to photo editing and some movie making using the new iMovie ’09.

    The updated $999 MacBook is a worthy buy.

    [Source: Macworld]

    Filed under: MacBook, ,

    Pirated Photoshop CS4 for the Mac also has trojan

    About four days ago, I posted a story about pirated copies of Apple’s newly released iWork ’09 were found to contain a trojan.

    Intego, makers of Mac security software, reported that the trojan it calls “OSX.Trojan.iServices.A” were packaged into pirated copies of iWork ’09. What the trojan does once installed into a Mac is to allow somebody else to gain access into the system to possibly download more components into the infected Mac.

    Another trojan, a variant of the one found in illegal copies of iWork ’09, has been found to be infecting pirated copies of Adobe Photoshop CS4. The trojan called “OSX.Trojan.iServices.B” also allows a malicious user to gain access to an infected Mac to perform various actions or downloads remotely.

    How do you protect yourself against these trojans or malwares?

    Simple.

    Do not download and install software or applications from untrusted sources, especially from torrent sites or peer-to-peer networks. It doesn’t pay to pirate.

    [Source: AppleInsider]

    Filed under: third-party, ,

    iPhone Software update version 2.2.1

    It has been a busy week for updates from Apple.

    Aside from the iDVD update today, Apple also released iPhone Software update 2.2.1.

    The 246MB iPhone Software update improves stability of Safari and fixes an issue wherein images saved from mail do not display correctly in the Camera Roll.

    An iPod touch update includes the fixes to Safari and Camera Roll as well as a fix to an issue that causes some Apple Lossless (ALAC) to skip during playback.

    Version 2.2.1 for the iPhone and iPod touch can be downloaded via iTunes.

    [Source: AppleInsider]

    Filed under: iPhone, iPod touch,

    iDVD updated to 7.0.3

    Version 7.0.3 “improves overall stability and addresses a number of other minor issues”.

    Update through Software Update or by downloading direct from Apple.

    [Source: Macworld]

    Filed under: iLife,

    Pirated iWork ’09 contains trojan; fix released

    Soon after Apple released iWork ’09 during Macworld San Francisco 09, copies of the updated office suite for the Mac started appearing in torrent and warez sites.

    Now comes the bad news and not-so-good news.

    Bad news: these copies of iWork ’09 come with a trojan as reported by a security firm.

    Not-so-good news: another security firm has released a free fix for the trojan.

    Why did I say that the release of the removal tool is not-so-good news? That’s because this provides a solution for people who opted to steal rather than buy the software.

    I’ve pirated software in the past. I still do but not as much as before. I made a firm decision when I switched to the Mac that I was going to lessen my pirating ways, and hopefully, real soon, stop it altogether. I have my reasons which I will talk about soon.

    In the meantime, please do not pirate. Almost every commercial application out there has an alternative that is free. May not be as snazzy as the paid app is but it does the job.

    If you don’t know where to get these free software, you can always ask other users.

    Filed under: iWork, , ,

    MWSF 09: iWork ’09

    Last January 6, 2009, Apple held its Macworld San Francisco keynote with Phil Schiller, Apple’s senior VP of Worldwide Product Marketing, taking the stage.

    During Apple’s final Macworld keynote, the company introduced new versions of their multimedia suite, iLife, and office suite, iWork. Apple also released the new 17-inch MacBook Pro, which completes the lineup of Apple’s portable into the unibody design. Last but not the least, Apple announced DRM-free songs at the iTunes store.

    This post will discuss new features in iWork ’09.

    Apple released their office suite for the Mac on 2005 with Keynote version 2 and the first release of Pages. In 2007, Apple announced the release of iWork ’08 updating both Keynote and Pages as well as adding in the spreadsheet application, Numbers. This year, iWork ’09 brings more improvements to the office suite as well as introduction of a new service, iWork.com.

    Keynote
    Keynote was first released on 2003, competing against Microsoft’s own presentation software, Powerpoint. Version 2 of the software was sold together with Pages in iWork ’05 office suite.

    Keynote ’09 shows these new features and improvements:

  • Magic Move lets you move an image from one part of a slide to another part of the next slide using a quick, easy to use process. The change in location, scale, rotation, and opacity are done automatically.
  • Enchanced theme chooser lets you view the included fonts, colors, and textures more clearly. Eight new themes have also been added
  • Text- and object-based transition morphs text from one slide to the next slide
  • New 3D charts and chart animations
  • Keynote Remote lets iPhone or iPod touch users control their presentation using Wi-Fi. The Keynote Remote app is a $0.99 download from the App Store

    Pages
    The first version of Pages was bundled together with Keynote version 2 on January 11, 2005 in what was known as iWork ’05, Apple’s own office suite for Mac OS X. Version 1 was more of a page layout application but later versions saw the word processing aspect of the software improved upon.

    Pages ’09 lays down the following:

  • Full-screen view lets the user to see the document full screen allowing the user to focus on what he’s working on and hide the distractions from the desktop or from the rest of the opened applications
  • New Outline mode
  • Mail merge with Numbers or with Address Book
  • Enhanced Template Chooser lets previewing and choosing templates easier and more convenient
  • Ability to insert complex equations into documents via a third-party software, MathType

    Numbers
    Numbers came late into the game. It became part of iWork three years after the release of the office suite. Numbers is a spreadsheet application that’s easy to use and breaks away from the conventional look and feel of other spreadsheet programs.

    Numbers ’09 new additions are:

  • Over 250 functions and new 2D chart options added
  • Formula List view lets you see every calculation in your spreadsheet at one time
  • With large sets of data, rows can now be grouped according to any data in a column
  • Linked Charts lets charts created in Numbers and then copied to either Pages or Keynote to stay linked to the original data. Any changes made to the data in Numbers, updating Pages or Keynote requires just one click.
  • Enhanced Template Chooser lets previewing and choosing templates easier and more convenient

    iWork.com
    iWork.com was launched as a free beta during Macworld San Franciso ’09. It brings iWork documents to the web and allowing for multiple collaborators. The service can be accessed using any web browser running under Mac OS X or Windows. Collaborators can only add notes or comments, not directly edit the document. Apple will eventually shift to a fee-based model once iWork.com is out of beta.

    Pricing and availability
    iWork ’09 is selling for $79 at the US Apple Online Store and Php4,590.00 at the Philippine Apple Online Store. iWork ’09 is also available for only $49 with every purchase of a Mac from the Apple Store or from Authorized Apple Resellers.

    If you want to save some money, you can get the combo pack of iWork ’09, iLife ’09, and Mac OS 10.5 Leopard for only $169. Called the Mac Box Set, it bundles all these three together and a very good option for those who haven’t upgraded to the Leopard operating system yet. The Mac Box Set is available at the Philippine Apple Online Store for Php9880.

    Product pages:

  • Keynote
  • Pages
  • Numbers
  • iWork.com
  • Mac Box Set

    Filed under: iWork, ,

  • Quicktime 7.6 update

    Apple has released Quicktime 7.6 with video, audio, compatibility and security improvements.

    From Apple’s support page, the updates include:

    Video:

  • Improves single-pass H.264 encoding quality
  • Increases the playback reliability of Motion JPEG media

    Audio:

  • Improves AAC encoding fidelity
  • Audio tracks from MPEG video files now export consistently

    Application Support:

  • Improves compatibility with iChat and Photo Booth

    Security:

  • Addresses security issues from maliciously crafted media files

    This update benefits both Mac OS X and Windows users.

    Get the 7.6 update through Apple Software Update or get it from Apple’s download section.

    Filed under: Software, , ,

  • PLEASE READ

    On July 21, I moved my blog to its own server.

    So www.davaomacuser.com no longer points to davaomacuser.wordpress.com.

    I've already got a few new posts over there so please join me at www.davaomacuser.com.

    See you there. Thanks!

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