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Software - OSX
May 19, 2015

MBP running Yosemite (10.10.2) – excessive Folder Actions Dispatcher logs

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OS seems to be a bit sluggish and found excessive crash logs occurring relating to the Folder Actions Dispatcher.
The Folder Actions Dispatcher was taking c. 80% of the CPU process time. It is not conclusive as to what the problem is but I have taken the quick route of disabling the Folder Actions until I need them (usually used with Automator I think). Cleaning up old startup folders/ etc hasn’t made a difference yet.
Going by the logs there are quite a number of issues that seem to be occurring which is slowing down the OS – looks like OSX is getting like Windows where only a fresh install gives you a chance!

Eg: I chose the configure Folder Actions option in the Script editor and the Folder Actions window popped up with the beachball which hung around for quite a while ( c. 44 seconds in fact).
Console log showed –

15:20:26 WindowServer: disable_update_timeout: UI updates were forcibly disabled by application “Folder Actions Setup” for over 1.00 seconds. Server has re-enabled them.

15:21:09 WindowServer: common_reenable_update: UI updates were finally reenabled by application “Folder Actions Setup” after 44.36 seconds (server forcibly rer-enabled them after 1.00 seconds).

Procedure –

Use the Script Editor utility Preferences and then check Show Script Menu in Menubar
Use the script menu in the menubar to select Folder Actions>Configure Folder Actions then disable

Software - OSX
May 19, 2015

ML-1210 Laser Printer Broken on MBP after OSX Mavericks (10.9.5) to Yosemite (10.10.2) upgrade

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Tried the printer but got a message that driver wasn’t installed correctly. Re-installed the Foomatic/Ghostscript/Samsung GDI drivers and almost worked – however Yosemite uses sandboxing so the printer still wasn’t going.
The console logs showed entries for the sandbox daemon – eg:

15:37:09 Samsung_ML_1210_AEX: The function ‘CGContextErase’ is obsolete and will be removed in an upcoming update
15:37:04 sandboxd: ([3689]) foomatic-rip(3689) deny file-read-data /usr/local/etc/foomatic/filter.conf

Procedure to relax sandboxing ( att. Werner P in a forum somewhere and the Mac Observer) –

Use the Terminal and type –

Sudo sh –c ‘echo “Sandboxing Relaxed” >> /etc/cups/cups-files.conf’ (the root password will be required)
There will be no acknowledge of the password.
Type sudo launchctl stop org.cups.cupsd

At this point my printer was working again.

It should be noted that in the future an update may kill the printer again (as seen in the log above) but being such an old printer the drivers may not be updated to accommodate Yosemite’s sandboxing.

As a sidenote a wee app called EtreCheck is helpful to provide a summary of system information.

Software - OSX
May 19, 2015

Mid-2009 MBP – Update OSX Mavericks (10.9.5) to Yosemite (10.10.2)

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I decided to upgrade the MBP to Yosemite and by and large the upgrade seemed to go fairly well with just minor tweaks necessary. Prior to the update I upgraded the Parallels and VirtualBox VM’s along with as many apps that had Yosemite updates. Also mail/calendar/etc backups were done.
Parallels 8 on Mavericks upgraded to 10 ready for Yosemite.
VirtualBox upgraded to latest (4.3.26).
Yosemite was downloaded from the App Store and takes a while (c. 5GB). It is found in the Applications folder ( named Install OSX Yosemite) so I made a copy for future use since it is deleted after the install.
The install just happens with a couple of resets and Yosemite will pick up some incompatible apps notably Trim Enabler. I need to read more about Yosemite but it looks like it protects the system with sandboxing/etc more than previous OSX’s so to enable Trim support on the SSD is no longer just as straight forward.

I also found my old printer didn’t work (Samsung ML-1210) – Yosemite said the printer wasn’t installed correctly. I re-installed the drivers and it almost worked but a sandboxing issue was encountered however a fix was found and now works well (see next topic).

Because the MBP is a portable I have no idea how Yosemite would treat RAID storage and the like but I suspect it should be OK.

Aperture upgraded OK to the latest 3.6 which will be the last version I’m sure.

Overall impression –
Yosemite looks a bit rougher on the screen I suspect because it is optimized for Retina screens and the new default font seems OK. There seems to be heavy log activity that is probably due to remnants ifrom the previous OS. OS seems sluggish at times so it seems to be the first OSX I’ve encountered that may benefit from a fresh clean install (just like Windows).

Hardware - iPhone
May 19, 2015

iPhone 5S – Frozen White Apple Logo issue

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This is a goodie – the phone boots up and gets a White Apple Logo screen and freezes. If plugged into a computer iTunes will not sync so it appears like an expensive brick albeit a thin one!

This trick found on the net seemed to work for me –

Press the Sleep and Home buttons together until the screen goes black. (Sleep is the top power button)
Release and the Apple will appear.
Press Sleep and Vol Up buttons until you get the lock screen.
Back to normal – thanks Apple for the wild ride ….

Software - OSX
Dec 31, 2014

Using iTunes for Books on OSX Mavericks (10.9)

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Always used iTunes to catalogue the books (mainly PDF’s) but since Mountain Lion (10.9) Apple has moved to using iBooks instead. Thought this would be a good idea but the iBooks app for OSX is a piece of horse dung so I went back to using iTunes which at the moment is still possible.

Basically if you want to have books in iTunes you have to get rid of the iBooks install which for me isn’t too much of a problem since I use iBooks mainly on the iPad anyway.

Use AppCleaner to remove iBooks app and restart to stop services, etc. the Books option will appear back in the iTunes app.

iBooks repository: (this will be populated when PDF's are dragged into iBooks app)

Macintosh HD ~/Library/Containers/ ks/Books

iTunes repository: (this is used for new book downloads if iBooks is not installed)

DiskStation (NAS Library)
/Volumes/music/iTunes/iTunes Media/Books/Robert Louis Stevenson/Treasure Island.epub (packaged)

in iBooks this would look like -
~/Library/Containers/ ks/Books/482743251.epub (unpackaged)

iTunes restoration for Books (as at iTunes 11.2.2)

iTunes uses packaged .epub files which are unpacked into .epub folders in iBooks. Also the .epub files from iTunes
which are named as for the book title will be renamed as a numerical/alphanumeric entity based on the internal itemId of the book.

In order to move a book from iBooks to iTunes -
1 make a copy of the folder and rename to title of book eg: 482743251.epub to Treasure Island.epub (you need to search the folder to determine the book title)
2 right-click folder and compress eg: Treasure Island.epub folder will produce a file called Treasure
3 kill the Treasure Island.epub folder and rename Treasure as Treasure Island.epub
4 place new packaged epub file in a folder named as per the Author and then put this into the iTunes Books folder

in iTunes do a Get Info on each book and do a Locate and Add Art if necessary.

Locate - navigate to the iTunes Books folder and the appropriate Author folder.

Add Art - inside the original iBooks folder there may be a file called iTunesArtwork - if so this can be renamed as a .jpg so call it cover.jpg and then use this file.

Use the Get Info to set the metadata -
Author --> Artist field
Title --> Album field (useful if a print to PDF is done using Album indexing)

Got corruption of the listings - but signed into account and checked purchases - the affected books had a cloud indicator on them so re-downloaded and OK.
The new downloads were placed in the Books folder in the iTunes Library.

Sometimes I end up with duplicate books because one copy is residing in the remote folder and the other is in the iTunes store within the remote folder. I use Get Info to locate the iTunes internal copy and delete it ( I also disable the auto-manage library option).


Updated OSX to 10.9.5 and unfortunately iTunes 12 is bundled so I lost iTunes 11 and a few things broke however Books in iTunes is still possible. HERE

If a PDF is selected and Right-click/Get Info used the dialog has changed and some fields can no longer be edited however if the Option/Alt key is pressed when doing Get Info then the old dialog is produced so business as usual.

New format: HERE
Released Date field always gives 05/06/1905 and can’t be altered
Year field unavailable
Album field unavailable

Add Fields option only allows Comments field.

Old format: HERE
No Released Date field
All legacy fields available

It was noted that if the Album and Year fields were completed with the old format then they would appear in the new format dialog and are editable.

What’s interesting about all this is that rather than stripping the the ‘old’ deprecated Books stuff out of iTunes they have actually changed it around as if getting ready for further improvements – maybe it will become an iLibrary that can catalog/manage/use all sorts of media.

After update to Yosemite (OSX 10.10.2) the Option/Alt appears not to work however Dougscripts has a script called Multi-Item Edit which works fine for Music and Books.

Software - OSX
Dec 31, 2014

Screensavers on OSX Mavericks (10.9)

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The brain was in a guddle trying to work out Node-Webkit stuff so I tried some old screensavers on OSX as a wee retro shot.

Quite interesting is an app called SaveHollywood.saver ( )which allows movie files to be run as screensavers (10.8 or later).

Run the screensaver on XP SP3 VM and use ScreenFlick app to record the screen for the duration of the saver.
ScreenFlick allows export as a MP4 file.
Editing of the screen capture was done with an app called MP4Tools – select the start and end time of the piece to be extracted and used with SaveHollywood app.
SaveHollywood.saver is doubleclicked to install and then is selected via System Preferences>Desktop & Screensaver tab. An Options button will allow 1 or more videos to be selected and used.

I decided to try some old favourites -

Pink Floyd PULSE (Earls Court Shows)
Jordan F1
Heineken bouncing bottle cap
Newcastle Broonale (2nd version with bouncing balls)

These work great but some screensavers are more interactive and don’t suit the movie method of using eg: the Johnny Castaway saver uses system parameters to provide features over time and would therefore require a very large movie but savers like PF and Jordan suit the Movie method quite well.

Not really suitable -
Johnny Castaway
Toshiba Flying Laptops

I suppose this means I’ll have to try KillerBean or maybe even LOTR if I want to kill the hard disk ….

Hardware - Mac
Jul 29, 2014

iPhone 4S – WiFi setting greyed out after IOS 7 Upgrade

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Well, I know someone with an iPhone 4S bought second-hand and out of Apple warranty and working fine on IOS 6 – however after upgrading to IOS 7 he found the wireless setting was greyed out so wifi was no longer available on the phone. To cut a long story short it seems that a lot of folk have been getting this and of course being older hardware Apple is as interested in getting to the bottom of the issue as merging with Microsoft.

After reading lots of forums and getting the lowdown on the issue various issues are blamed such as hardware that requires a new phone to be bought, solder joints breaking, etc.

Anyway the other day this particular phone got left in a hot summer house and eventually issued a temperature warning and then the phone was taken away for an hour or so. Later on I looked at the phone and the wifi was still greyed out but after it was fully switched off/on and the Bluetooth was toggled the wifi was back and working.
This YouTube video seems to indicate the the problem quite well ( and interestingly the chap suggests that when his phone was reinstalled as IOS 6 the wifi was as good as gold.
Apple understandably wants no truk with freezer fixes since any possible moisture/condensation in an iPhone would be a bad thing and indeed in my case it proved unnecessary anyway.

My feeling on the issue is that IOS 7 probably runs ‘hotter’ than IOS 6 and the soldering is OK but IOS 7 possibly has new code to cater for the new heat requirements and creates an issue with the older hardware when setting temperature limits, etc. So, it looks like every IOS 7 update on the 4S may require heating of the phone to get the first temperature warning and then to be shut off fully and allowed to cool down in order to reset the wifi chip.

Jul 29, 2014

Unable to Connect to OSX Shared Folders from Win XP VM

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Since the later OSX releases networking using SMB, etc between XP and OSX has been a bit tricky – however in this case I found I could connect to the XP folders OK but not in the other direction.

On OSX machine goto System Preferences > Sharing, ensure File Sharing is checked and goto Options. Both SMB and AFP were checked but under Windows File Sharing I needed to check my Account in order for OSX to store the password in a less secure manner. This did the trick.

Software - OSX
Jul 29, 2014

User Library Folder Missing from Finder on Mavericks

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This is annoying as I tend to go into the Application Support folder within the Library quite a bit but later OSX versions tend to hide a lot of the System type folders.


In Finder > Go and hold down ALT(Option) and Library will appear. (occasional use)

In Finder open folder then VIEW > SHOW VIEW OPTIONS and check Show Library Folder. (permanent)

Again I like the concept of change the OS but retain the old option.

Software - XP
Jul 29, 2014

XP Soldiers On ....

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Well here we are - XP is dead apparently.

So what to do?

Vista – a breed of dog, bad enhancement of XP, your choice.
Win 7 – appears quite good and stable but now 2 versions old with Win 9 due.
Win 8.1 – trying this in a VM and appears quite stable but the desktop mode is a bit dodgy ( it always seems to want to go back to mobile/metro mode). I could in some ways live with the Metro mode for some uses but not at the expense of losing normal desktop use.
The big hassle I found with 8.1 is the super enhanced security features that make it difficult to modify system files. I used a theme adjuster (as I did with XP with no issues) and managed to bork the install when applying Win 8.1 Update.

The answer I guess was to uninstall the theme adjustments prior to updating.

Also impossible to modify the system startup sound to my favourite Win95 tune – I’m a dinosaur at heart.

My solution:

Keep using XP Pro SP3 in VM’s for occasional desktop use and prefer OSX for using the internet.
Keep Win 8.1 as a toy
Use OSX as a proper desktop OS that hasn’t as yet lost the plot to the mobile world.

XP Update:

Thought I could keep running Microsoft Security Essentials but no the last update crocked that with annoying messages about systems at risk,etc (shades of the Windows Genuine Advantage garbage) so now running with Comodo Internet Security.

CIS installed OK but I found that I needed to clean up the VM with CCleaner (registry, etc) after MSE was uninstalled
Prior to the registry clean there were various errors such as ‘cmdhtml.dll not found’ and ‘cis.exe unable to start’.

122 Posts Displaying page 11 of 13
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