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Spring Into a Faster Macintosh With an SSD Upgrade

Speed Up Your Mac With an SSD UpgradeSpring is almost here and that means it’s time to shake off the slowness on your Macintosh with an SSD Upgrade! Whether you have a Macbook Pro, Macbook or iMac, let Capital Mac Service spring you into a much faster internal solid state hard drive (SSD), which can make your Macintosh 200-400% faster! Without any slow moving parts like your current hard drive, a solid state hard drive has no moving parts and acts almost instantly. Capital Mac Service will even handle the data transfer to your new SSD drive so all you have to do is enjoy the speed boost! Contact Capital Mac Service today to arrange your new SSD conversion today! See our recent article about 5 things you need to know about an SSD upgrade here!

An SSD Upgrade is the fastest and most affordable way to breathe new life into your older Macintosh computer!

Another wonderful Capital Mac Service comment

Here’s another great comment from the United Kingdom about one of our posts:

I too found your site after purchasing a new 2016 iMac with El Capitan and then afterwards discovering my Adobe Creative Suite 5 would crash at quit, etc. HORROR!

10 minutes Googling, I found your suggested fix with renaming the files, and voila! No more crashing. SUCH A SIMPLE fix.  I am now on day two and things are looking very positive. Thank you Capital Mac Service.

Yours, M.Leonard, London, UK

How to make a Genius Bar appointment at the Albany Crossgates Mall Apple Store

Apple Store Crossgates Mall Albany

Making an appointment at the Apple Store in Crossgates Mall isn’t difficult! Learn how in this article.

We at Capital Mac Service understand that there are times when you absolutely have to skip our local Capital District Macintosh services for the real Apple Store in Albany’s Crossgates Mall. While we would love to work with you on every Apple product, there are many times we simply cannot, such as iPods, iPads and iPhones. For these devices, you will have to make an online appointment at the Albany Apple Retail Store in Crossgates Mall. To make an appointment at the Apple Retail Store in Crossgates, you will want to visit this official link.

From this link, you can make an appointment at the Genius Bar in Crossgates Mall, which is a great first step in getting your newer Apple devices fixed properly–try to avoid the “mall kiosks” for your Apple products that are under warranty. Even if you are out of warranty, it’s always a good move to purchase replacement devices directly through the Apple Store in Crossgates Mall. Often, the Apple Store in Crossgates Mall will not service your iOS devices if they were serviced elsewhere, such as a Crossgates Mall phone repair kiosk.

What about obsolete or vintage Macintosh products?

If you have out of warranty  or vintage Macintosh products, such as a MacBook, MacBook Pro, iMac or Power Mac, the Apple Store in Crossgates Mall will give you minimal or no support on these older products. At that point, you can consider service at Capital Mac Service, since those are the products we specialize in. Fill out the contact form on our contact page to have an instant answer on your Macintosh computer issues in the Albany, Schenectady, Colonie, Latham, Clifton Park, Glens Falls, Troy and Saratoga areas.

Hopefully, you can use this information on making a reservation at the Genius Bar in Crossgates Mall (Albany, NY) to your benefit, and, if you cannot get your Macintosh issues solved, please contact Capital Mac Service for some advice.


An amazing Capital Mac Service client comment

This just came in today from far, far away (Kelly A.):

I searched through forums and tried all kinds of suggestions to make my Adobe programs work with the new system software. Then I found your site, and all my problems were solved within two minutes. I cannot thank you enough. I’m bookmarking your site, and if I weren’t 1,000 miles away, I would bring my Mac to you whenever I need repairs. Thanks again. You’re a lifesaver!


How to ditch Time Warner Home Phone & modem fees

Time Warner Cable ModemI was tipped off by a client recently on how to ditch Time Warner home phone service and the modem rental fee that they gouge you with every month. All told, this tip will basically get rid of not only $25 per month ($300 per year) on the Time Warner home phone service , but, also the useless $10 modem rental fee they charge you every month. How are we going to do this? For starters, you are going to replace the Time Warner phone service with Ooma phone service, and on top of that, you are going to purchase your own modem to replace the Time Warner issued modem. Ready to begin?

First, a few caveats. Doing this swapping of parts and service is not free–you will be required to purchase an Ooma telephone box (approximately $70-100)  outright and pay to have your home phone number ported from Time Warner to Ooma for about $40 (if you want to keep it–otherwise, you don’t have to shell out for this). You will also have to purchase a new cable modem outright, which will save you $120 a year from Time Warner. The price of a new cable modem can be anywhere from $50-100. At the end of this adventure, you will be paying Ooma roughly $4 per month for service (unless you go with Ooma pro service which is $9.99 per month) and taxes and no modem rental fee to worry about. That will bring your total from about $420 per year to about $48 bucks if you play your cards right.

Let’s talk about Ooma

Ooma Box

Ditch Time Warner home phone service for Ooma

Ooma is an internet-based phone service that hooks to your router and places all of your calls though the internet–which is exactly what Time Warner’s home phone service does. Ooma adds all of the bells and whistles that Time Warner does, including call forwarding, voicemail, junk call filtering (part of the pro service) and mobile apps to keep it all in check. I opted out of the Ooma pro services, since I don’t really need any of that stuff. I will miss the junk call filtering, but, for $10 per month, I can live without it. When the equipment came, it was very easy to setup and get it running in less than 10 minutes. I simply plugged the phone line from the back of the Time Warner modem into the back of the Ooma box. They provide an ethernet cord to plug into your router. After that, it was a trip to the Ooma website to setup my account and get the billing out of the way. I chose to port our home phone number from Time Warner to Ooma for a one-time fee of $39. As of this writing, the port is almost complete and it’s barely been a week since starting it.

The voice and call quality is basically on-par with the Time Warner phone service–no complaints so far. If you have a power outage, you are out of luck, since this works over the Internet and needs wall power. You may want to have a backup place (cell phone), just in case. You can check voicemail right on the cool-looking Ooma box, which resembles an old fashioned answering machine. The website is fresh and clean, and gets you what you need quickly, including call history, voicemail and account options. The best part is the cool, futuristic dial tone you hear when picking up a phone on the Ooma system. I chose to hook the Ooma to the wall outlets so all of our phones in the house work on the Ooma box–a bit tricky to setup, but, worth it. You can purchase an Ooma box and setup at this website.

Let’s talk about your new non-Time Warner home phone service modem.

Ditching the Time Warner Road Runner modem is also possible. I recently found a replacement ARRIS SURFboard SB6141 DOCSIS 3.0 Cable Modem for about $70 bucks. This is a bare-bones modem that will get the job done. If I were you, I would check the Time Warner website to make sure you find a compatible modem for your region. I haven’t hooked up this new modem yet, until Ooma finishes porting my number. So, in order, you would want to setup Ooma first, then, cancel Time Warner home phone service when your port is complete. Then, you can go ahead and setup the new modem. Do your own research and find the right modem for you, even if you have to contact Time Warner.


How to find duplicates in Apple Photos or iPhoto

Photo LibraryIn today’s day and age we tend to keep a LOT of photos. With the advent of iPhones and iPads in large computer hard drives, we have photo collections that are larger than they’ve ever been and there are so many duplicates. Managing all of this photo data can be troublesome when you’re dealing with iPhoto and Apple’s new Photos app. One of the largest complaints that we get here at Capital Mac Service, is why is there so many duplicates in my photo library? This is a simple question that has a lot of different answers. Unlike iTunes, there is no duplicate finder in iPhoto or Apple’s Photos app. Most users don’t have the time or patience to go through thousands upon thousands of duplicate photos in iPhoto or Photos. Fortunately, there are some software titles out there that will help with duplicates in iPhoto or the Photos app. Using third-party software to find duplicates in your photo library can be dangerous. You should make a complete backup of your entire photo library before using any of these apps. Capital Mac service is not responsible for any data loss due to this article.

One of the best pieces of software to find duplicates in your iPhoto or Photos library is called Photosweeper. This $10 app on the Mac App Store has a trial version as well. This software currently works with Apple’s Photos, Aperture, Adobe Lightroom, and iPhoto. Some of the excellent features in the software include auto Mark, similar photos finder, series of shots finder, autolock, finding movies, finding edited pictures, batch renaming, safe removal in the trash, supports most image formats, very fast and well optimized with 64-bit support, and it even works with OS X El Capitan. The software also works with most versions of iPhoto, all the way back to iPhoto 7.

Where can I get Photosweeper to get rid of these photo duplicates?

If you’re looking for a beautiful and impressive duplicate photo finder for your Mac, PhotoSweeper (download here) seems to be the best of its class. Again, please make sure to back up all your photos safely before using any of these sort of apps that you might find on the App Store.

How to get more hard drive storage on MacBook Air & Retina

One of the common complaints of the MacBook Pro Retina and MacBook Air is that they simply don’t have enough storage space. This is due to the fact that the Retina and Air have solid state hard drives (SSD), which are typically nowhere near the size of their hard drive cousins. In today’s article, we will go over 2 convenient options that will give you instant storage space on any MacBook Air or MacBook Retina–all without even having to open the computer at all!

Both of these options to increase the space of your MacBook Pro or MacBook Retina by using the SD card slot on the side of the computer. Both of these products are also pretty cool in the fact that they sit flush against the side of the computer. Normal SD cards stick out a bit which can cause them to break off inside the SD card reader sometimes.

These expansion cards for the MacBook Pro and the MacBook retina come from two different companies. The first expansion card comes from a company called TarDisk. The second option for storage expansion on the MacBook Pro and the MacBook retina comes from Transcend. Both of these companies put out very similar products. The storage cards from TarDisk seem to be a bit more expensive than the cards from Transcend. Both cards either come in 128 GB or 256 GB. Another difference in the two cards seems to be that the TarDisk cards add to your hard drive size, where the Transcend cards simply just give you extra storage space separately from your hard drive. The tardis card comes the special “Pear” software that allows it to bond with your hard drive.

Here’s where to purchase these hard drive storage expansion cards


Disk Drill PRO Promo Coupon

Disk Drill

Disk Drill is the data recovery software you have been looking for

Disk Drill is perfect for any Mac user!

Disk Drill is a powerful data recovery tool for Mac and PC created by CleverFiles and it recovers any type of files from any storage media (internal and external). You can download the free version of Disk Drill here, which includes Recovery Vault, Guaranteed Recovery protection, recover protected data, backup failing disks into DMG, and preview all recovery methods.

As a special thank you for watching the video review, Capital Mac Service and CleverFiles are pleased to offer a 25% coupon code towards the full PRO version of Disk Drill for the Mac, which includes Data recovery for home users, Quick & Deep Scan, Rebuild HFS+ Catalog, SSD wear level and temperature, Lost Partition Search, and works with all media types and file systems. The coupon code is: COUPON-DD25 for the PRO version. Feel free to download the extended PRO version (usable up to 3 Macs), located here.

How do you burn a disk image (DMG) in El Capitan?

Capital Mac Service Tune Up

What happened to the disk burning options in Disk Utility? They are now part of the Mac OS X Finder!

How do I burn a Disk Image in Mac OS X El Capitan?

If you noticed recently, Mac OS X El Capitan has removed a lot of handy features from the Disk Utility program–one of them being the ability to burn disk images (DMG or IMG). This used to be a staple feature in Disk Utility. As with most things, Apple has since decided that this is no longer a viable option and simply removed it from Disk Utility, as well as the “clone” feature that also used to be there. In order to burn disk images on Mac OS X El Capitan, here’s what you now have to do instead:

  1. Head to the Mac OS X Finder
  2. Select the disk image (DMG or IMG) that you need to burn in the Finder
  3. Go to the File menu and choose “Burn Disk Image ____ to Disk”
  4. Insert your blank DVD or CD and click on the Burn button in this window

That’s pretty much it–even though it’s no longer listed in Disk Utility, you can still burn CD or DVD’s of your favorite disk images right in the Mac OS X El Capitan Finder.

How to install Android Marshmallow on the OnePlus One

You can now sideload the Android Marshmallow update on the OnePlus One. The link is here for the latest build of Cyanogen which is now at ZNH0EAS26M.

We will upload exact instructions tomorrow. 

How do I get Google Now on Tap working on my OnePlus One?

This is for Nova Launcher people only: To get the new Google Now on Tap working, you first must have Google Now installed (see it on the Google Play Store). Then, you have to tell the OnePlus One to make the home button the trigger for Google Now on Tap. Simply launch the settings app and go to “buttons,” and then choose “Long Press Action,” under the home button section. Choose “Voice Assistant” and back all the way out. Now, visit the Google application and hit the 3 lines in the upper left corner–enter the Google Now on Tap choice and turn it on. Now, just hold down the home button and Google Now on Tap will be live!

How to make a bootable USB Mac OS X Yosemite install drive

Capital Mac Service Business Services

Let Capital Mac Service be your Macintosh business connection in the Capital District area!

Since there haven’t been CD’s or DVD’s to reinstall Mac OS X software in the last few years, here’s a fast and easy way to get yourself any of the Macintosh OS X versions on your own USB flash drive. This is a great trick for any Macintosh IT folks who need to do installs all day long!

What you’ll need for your Mac OS X Yosemite USB installer

  1. At least an 8GB USB flash memory stick, such as this model
  2. The Mac OS X Yosemite downloaded installer (more on this soon)
  3. Some Mac OS X Terminal voodoo (more on this, too)

The first step in creating your own bootable USB Mac OS X Yosemite install drive

First, we are going to insert our USB flash drive–make sure it’s empty since it will be erased later. It has to be formatted in disk utility if it’s not already formatted, so go ahead and do this in the disk utility program. Make sure the name of the flash drive is “untitled” for the sake of this example. Also make sure you have the Mac OS X Yosemite installer, which is located in the Applications folder. If you don’t see it there, you will have to go to the Mac App Store and redownload it from your purchases tab. This may take awhile, since the file is around 6GB.

We are going to launch the Terminal, which is located in the Utilities folder inside of your Applications folder. If you don’t know where any of that is, this article may be a bit advanced for you. Launch the Terminal and copy and paste the next code into the Terminal window and hit return–(you will be asked for your administration password!):

sudo /Applications/Install\ OS\ X\ Yosemite.app/Contents/Resources/createinstallmedia –volume /Volumes/Untitled –applicationpath /Applications/Install\ OS\ X\ Yosemite.app –nointeraction

The Terminal will now show you progress of the process, which can take 30 to 90 minutes or even more. You will see things like: Erasing Disk: 0%…10 percent…20 percent… during the process. Eventually, it will copy the installer files and make the disk bootable. After the “done” command appears, you will have a perfectly good Yosemite Mac OS X installer USB drive.


How to Configure Time Machine on Your Macintosh

Time Machine is one of the most important items that comes with every Macintosh computer. This is the software–not hardware–that automatically backs your critical and important data up in case of total loss. You will have to purchase an external hard drive (purchase here) before you can use Time Machine.

What exactly is Time Machine?

To make sure your data is completely backed up on your Macintosh, you should use the built-in backup software, which is called Time Machine. This software is on every Macintosh that is running OS X 10.5 or later. The Time Machine icon is in your menubar, and looks like this:

Time Machine Icon

Once you locate this Time Machine icon, click on it and choose “Open Time Machine Preferences…” from the pop-down menu. This will bring you here, to the main Time Machine preferences window:

Time Machine preferences

From here, you want to make sure you have actually selected your external hard drive as the hard drive Time Machine will start to use. Simply hit the “Select Disk…” button and you will see the window to choose your external hard drive:

Time Machine Disk Choice

At this point, simply select your external hard drive from the list (there may only be one choice, depending on how many external hard drives you have plugged in!) and then hit the “Use for Backup” button. A message asking to reformat, or erase, this hard drive may appear. If you have no critical data stored on this hard drive (it should be empty since you just bought it) then proceed with the erase. This will initiate the hard drive and get it ready for backup!

Make sure you have the large ON and OFF switch turned to the ON position.

Close this window and Time Machine will begin the backup process, which could take hours. When it’s complete, you will see something like this in the Time Machine menubar icon, which states when the last backup successfully occurred–keep in mind, Time Machine backs up every hour while the hard drive is plugged in:

Time Machine Done

Feel free to contact Capital Mac with any questions about backing up your important data with Time Machine.

Accessing User Data After a Data Transfer

Capital Mac ServiceDuring data recovery service, Capital Mac will most often copy your entire user folder onto your external hard drive. This rescues most of your critical data, including photos, documents, music, desktop items, downloads, movies and library folder. Accessing this data is performed a few different ways as seen in the points below. Start by double-clicking on your user folder on the external hard drive, which is usually your first initial and last name, such as: “mwilson” or “mjones.” You will see the folders listed below:

Documents Folder: The documents in this folder can be dragged anywhere on your new computer, and most people will simply move them right back to the documents folder.

Movies Folder: This folder contains iMovie projects and finished iMovie movies, and the contents of this folder can simply be dragged to your current movies folder on your new or repaired computer.

Downloads Folder: This folder contains downloads from Safari or Chrome, and the contents of this folder can simply be dragged to your current download folder on your new or repaired computer.

Desktop Folder: This folder contains items that were previously on the desktop, and the contents of this folder can simply be dragged to your current desktop on your new or repaired computer.

Music Folder: This folder contains the entire iTunes music library, and the contents of this folder can simply be dragged to your current music folder on your new or repaired computer. If it asks to replace any items, you may do so.

Pictures Folder: This folder contains the entire iPhoto and Photobooth library, and the contents of this folder can simply be dragged to your current pictures folder on your new or repaired computer. If it asks to replace any items, you may do so. This step will remove any current photos you may have on the computer, so be careful!

2 alternative methods to access your iPhoto libary: If you would like to view your iPhoto library without copying it to the current computer, simply launch iPhoto with the Option key held down. You will be presented with a chooser window that will allow you to launch any iPhoto library that is on your external drive. Secondly, if you would like to look inside your iPhoto library, simply navigate to the pictures folder on your external hard drive and hold down the Control key on the keyboard, while clicking on the iPhoto Library. You will see an option to “Show Package Contents” which will let you peer inside the iPhoto library. There should be an Originals folder inside this window, which shows you all of your original photos. DO NOT make any changes while performing this step or you can damage the iPhoto library.

After data transfer service, you will notice your applications will not be part of the transfer–these cannot be dragged and dropped in this fashion and you will have to reinstall these programs from the App store, or, CD/DVD.

Mac OS X Installers Cannot Be Verified: Tampered or Corrupted?

Capital Mac Service Business Services

“This copy of the Install OS X Mavericks application can’t be verified. It may have been corrupted or tampered with during downloading”

The reason why this insane message is happening is because as of February 2016, the security certificates that validate these Mac OS X installs seems to have expired. What this means is that when you try to install Mac OS X Mavericks, Yosemite or El Capitan from any USB or external source, the certificate checking process will render your copy of the installer null and void. You will then get the error “This copy of the Install OS X Mavericks application can’t be verified. It may have been corrupted or tampered with during downloading.”

Thankfully, as annoying as this is, there’s a pretty easy fix in the Terminal, located on every installer of Mac OS X. Here’s what to do:

  1. Boot into the OS X installer as you would normally do (hold down option at boot and choose your installer
  2. Disconnect the ethernet cable if it’s connected and turn off wi-fi from the networking menu
  3. Open the utilities menu item and choose “Terminal”
  4. When the Terminal appears, simply type in the following command: date 0202020216
  5. Hit return and you will now see the new date as read back by the system
  6. Quit the Terminal
  7. You can now begin to reinstall OS X from the main screen as you did before

Why does this work in the Mac OS X Terminal?

The reason why this works is that you are actually turning your computer into a time machine–and you are telling it to go back to the date February 2nd, 2016. This tricks the certificate into believing that the date is now in the past and allows the installation to resume. You can also redownload any installers to get the new certificates, which are located in your purchase history on the Mac App Store. You would then have to make new installer disks with these new downloaded installers.

Please consider a small and secure donation if this post helped you with your issue!

The Capital Mac Service Backup-Your-Mac Package

Backup Your Macintosh

Capital Mac Service now offers on-site Mac Backup Packages

Backing up your Macintosh is a thing that most people don’t do. With the new Capital Mac Service Backup-Your-Mac Package, we aim to help you get those precious photos and documents backed up and safe. With our affordable backup package, you will never have to worry about losing your important data.

Why should I back up my data?

Even though you use a Macintosh, you aren’t safe–data is stored magnetically on your internal hard drive, which will eventually fail (usually between 3-5 years). When this hard drive fails, your data is now locked onto the drive with no affordable way to get it off. Standard data recovery companies usually charge between $500 to $1,000 for this service.

What is included with the Backup-Your-Mac Package?

Let Capital Mac Service be your go-to backup service with the new Backup-Your-Mac Package, which includes the following, delivered to you on-site:

  • A brand-new 500GB external self-powered USB portable hard drive
  • On-site instruction on how to backup your Mac and why it’s so important to do so
  • On-site Time Machine software configuration
  • Automatic backup scheduling with your new external hard drive
  • Off-site backup consultation using cloud services (optional)
  • Hard drive and SSD upgrade consultation (optional)

Contact Capital Mac Service today to schedule your new Backup-Your-Mac package installation. Your data is too important to lose!

Capital District Macintosh Computer Training for Seniors

Capital District Mac Training for SeniorsLet Capital Mac Service bring expert and friendly Macintosh computer training to you and your Mac here in the Capital District and surrounding areas.

Whether or not you now own your first Mac computer, or, have had it for years, Capital Mac Service is a perfect fit for you. Capital Mac Service can walk you through choosing a Mac and then learning how to use it. We can explain the differences between equipment on the Apple website in the comfort of your own residence and then help you order it and have it delivered to your doorstep! You’ll find yourself falling head over heels for your Macintosh in no time.

With over 13 years of experience at the local Apple Store and another 3 years of running Capital Mac Service, let Mark H. Delfs be your expert and patient Macintosh personal trainer. We offer affordable rates and in-home service whenever it’s convenient for you.

Topics that we cover during Macintosh computer training

  • Basic Macintosh training
  • Data backup with an external hard drive
  • Virus and malware removal and avoidance basics
  • Optimization of your Macintosh
  • Upgrading of RAM and hard drives on your older Mac
  • Basics of the Internet
  • Printer setup and installation
  • Question and answer sessions
  • E-mail and phone support
  • And many more!

Contact Capital Mac Service today for in-home Macintosh training, designed especially for Seniors with little or no computing experience. Capital Mac Service currently serves the Capital District area, including Albany, Schenectady, Troy, Wilton, Milton, Saratoga Springs, Saratoga Lake, Colonie, Malta, Latham, Glens Falls, Lake George, Ballston Spa, Clifton Park, Halfmoon and Bolton Landing. 

Speed up your Mac: Clean off your desktop!

Cluttered Mac OS X Desktop

Do you really need this many files on the desktop?

Here’s a really easy and effective way to speed up your aging Mac: Clean off your desktop! That’s right, by reducing the amount of icons you keep on the desktop (we’ve seen upwards of 250 icons on some computers), you will reduce the strain on the Mac OS X window server to draw all of those little icons.

Icons or windows?

Apparently, the icons that you see on your Mac’s desktop count as windows–small, redrawn windows. This basically means that the software that is tasked to draw and keep track of these windows, the WindowServer, has to work overtime to constantly show you these small windows. This translates to a load on the WindowServer, which translates into a speed penalty. By removing all of these icons on the desktop, you can help an older Mac to speed up a bit in the long run and give its WindowServer a break.

How do I clean off hundreds of desktop icons?

The easiest way we have found to keep the desktop clean, is to use a software program called “Hazel,” which we have talked about before on this blog. This is a simple utility that brings powerful rules to your computer, and allows you to not worry about keeping your files neat and tidy. For example, we have a Hazel rule that states “if any JPG hits the desktop, put it into our images folder located in the documents folder.” This works with any type of file and immediately makes the challenging task of keeping the Mac OS X desktop clean a manageable task for anyone.

Some bonus speed tips.

The Mac OS X also has a lot of “eye candy” going on throughout the system, including shadows, animations and transparency. By turning all of this off, you can also give the WindowServer and other processes that have to draw these effects a break. Some of the things to turn off to help speed up your Mac include:

  • System Preferences –> Dock –> Uncheck “animate opening applications”
  • System Preferences –> Dock –> Check “automatically hide and show the dock” which will make your dock disappear until you roll your mouse over it.
  • System Preferences –> Dock –> Uncheck “Magnification”
  • System Preferences –> Accessibility –> Check “Reduce Transparency”
  • Upgrade to an ultra-fast Solid State Hard Drive
  • Upgrade your RAM to the maximum amount for your machine. Contact Capital Mac for advice on this.
  • Keep your hard drive relatively clean–if it’s full or nearing full, the computer will feel like it’s running in molasses.

Mac Solid State Hard Drive (SSD) Upgrades: 5 Things You Need to Know

SSD Macintosh Upgrades

Speed up your slow Macintosh with a FAST SSD drive!

One of the best inventions over the last few years has definitely been the solid state hard drive, or SSD for short. Hard drive technology has taken a radical turn with the advent of the SSD drive, bringing many benefits to your aging Macintosh computer. Why is my mac computer slow? In this post, Capital Mac Service will explain 5 things you need to know before upgrading to this exciting new technology, which is now in reach to any Macintosh user and finally at affordable rates.

Speed is king in a Solid State Hard Drive.

Hard Drive vs. SSD Speed on a Mac

Witness the performance increase on a Mac from a solid state hard drive, seen in this speed chart–longer bars are faster!

  • Why is my mac computer running slow? Today’s solid state drive (SSD) upgrades will bring a new level of speed to your aging Macintosh computer. Most of our client interactions begin the same way: “My computer is so slow! It wasn’t like that when I bought it.” There’s good reason for this–old fashioned hard drives begin to slow down as they age, eventually failing completely. This translates into day to day speed degrading on your beloved Macintosh. An SSD will not only return you to early day speeds, but, it will sometimes eclipse the speed of your original hard drive by multiples. See some of the Capital Mac Service before and after SSD conversion videos here and prepare to be amazed–these are real client computers!

No moving parts.

Hard Drive vs. Solid State Drive internally

On the left is an old-fashioned hard drive with moving parts. On the right, an SSD with no moving parts to slow it down.

The reason most old-fashioned hard drives fail is because they are built with moving parts–many moving and delicate parts. These hard drives spin like an old record player at about 5,400 RPM–that means they spin almost 6,000 every minute while in use. The arm that reads the data on this spinning disk is delicate and will usually be the failure point of these hard drives–you may even hear it “clicking” when it dies. Solid State hard drives on the other hand, have no moving parts whatsoever. This translates into longer life and much faster response time.

SSD Drives are affordable, now more than ever.

SSD Pricing declining year over year

The price of an average Solid State Hard Drive is dropping dramatically as seen in this graph from a few years back

The prices of solid state hard drives have fallen dramatically over the last few years. This means that Capital Mac Service can now offer very competitive pricing on these exciting SSD upgrades. If your computer is in good working order, we can usually even transfer all of your current data from the old hard drive to the new SSD drive. We offer a variety of sizes on the SSD upgrade, from 128GB, all the way to 1TB if needed. Contact Capital Mac Service today for this amazing upgrade opportunity before you look at a new Macintosh.

Some Quiet, please.

Another benefit of the SSD upgrade on your Macintosh is the noise factor–SSD hard drives are silent since they have no moving parts. This means that you will virtually never hear anything coming from your hard drive bay, since there is no spinning disk anymore!

Hard Drive Vs. SSD Power Consumption Rates

This graph shows the power consumption of a standard hard drive vs. a Solid State hard drive…lower bars are better!

Better battery life with an SSD.

Because there are no moving parts or motors to drive, your Mac’s battery will thank you for upgrading to a new SSD drive. Power requirements are much less with an SSD, which translates to longer battery life on your portable Macintosh.

Scratched Hard Drive Platter

Here we can see a scratch on a hard drive platter after being dropped. Chances of data recovery are almost 0% in this case. Solid State Hard Drives don’t have this issue!

Reliability and less accidental failures.

If you have ever dropped your Macintosh laptop, the first thing that will usually become damaged is the internal hard drive. It’s similar to dropping an old-fashioned record player onto the floor while playing a record. Bad drops are usually the death knell for a Macintosh hard drive. With a SSD upgrade, your hard drive’s chances of survival increase to almost 100%. Since there are no moving parts in an SSD, there’s nothing to damage. SSD drives are also slated to last longer than a traditional hard drive. SSD drives have a predictable rate in which they can no longer accept or write data, unlike a standard hard drive.

SSD Macintosh Upgrades Before and AfterCapital Mac Service is a local SSD Upgrade leader.

Capital Mac Service has been installing SSD hard drives into older Macintosh computers in the Capital District for the last 3 years–we have the experience and knowledge to get the right SSD for your Macintosh and install it correctly and quickly. Most SSD upgrades are either same day upgrades, or, 24 hours at most. While your hard drive is currently working, contact us for a quote on this exciting new upgrade that will breathe life into your older Macintosh!

Capital Mac Specializes in Mac Malware and Virus Removal

Macintosh Malware and Antivirus Support

Keep your Mac free from people like this–malware and virus activity is increasing.

Here at Capital Mac Service, we are starting to see an uptick in Macintosh malware and virus incidents, which cause unnecessary pop-ups, system slowdowns and more. If you feel like your Macintosh has caught one of these malware or computer viruses, please contact Capital Mac Service today for a thorough analysis and removal of these types of incidents.

Capital Mac Service has the tools and experience to remove these types of Mac malware and virus from your Mac with minimal impact to your system and data. In the meantime, here’s some tips to avoid these types of malicious Mac files and programs that are up to no good.

Here’s what to watch for regarding Macintosh malware…

  • Don’t visit sites that you shouldn’t be on. Google Chrome will alert you to a good portion of these sites before you get to them., which is why Capital Mac Service recommends the use of Google Chrome as your main web browser.
  • Consider adding DNS security to your location which can keep users from visiting those sites that can infect your Mac. The recommended service that Capital Mac Service actually uses is called “OpenDNS” and is completely free for personal use. This service blocks out a majority of adult sites, as well as other sites such as “hateful” sites and gambling sites.
  • Keep the children from using the master admin account–in this account they can virtually install any software from anywhere. Make them a sub-account instead with limited privileges.
  • If you are using Safari, consider shutting off the plug-ins area in Safari’s preferences. This can stop a majority of bad Safari plug-ins from infecting your Macintosh. Some of the worst ones we see are known as Safari toolbar plugins and can open the door to more bad malware and virus activity.
  • Watch the help sites you visit! When performing a search for “Apple Help” or “HP Printer Help” for example, the sites that appear at the top of the Google search results are normally not these companies–they are 3rd party companies (who bought their way to the top of the search results) looking to get you to pay for service and support. Capital Mac suggests that you head to the official company website FIRST and then seek support through there–don’t rely on Google search results.
  • DO NOT give any company any details such as social security numbers, computer passwords, IP addresses, credit card numbers, or other personal data of any sort. Today’s computer support companies really do not need ANY of this data to solve your problem.
  • DO NOT allow any remote companies to access your Macintosh remotely. Even Capital Mac Service will NOT perform any remote control services of your Macintosh equipment. If you do allow remote tech support, often these companies will manufacture many problems on your computer to scare you into paying them to “fix” these problems. Often, they take you into the Mac Terminal and execute some simple commands, such as “top” that show you all the processes on the computer–they will then convince you that this is all bad activity and needs to be removed. This is untrue–they use tools like terminal to scare you into giving out your credit card information!
  • DO NOT install software from 3rd party sites if you are unsure who it’s actually from. Stick to the Apple App Store for software.
  • ALWAYS back up your data. There is no reason not to use the built-in Time Machine software and an external drive, such as this one, to keep your data SAFE. Most of this simple malware and virus activity cannot touch the external hard drive (yet).
  • ALWAYS contact Capital Mac Service on our contact page with any questions about security–we do not charge for advice and we’d rather have you as a future client and be 100% safe in the meantime.

Apple Launches MacBook Pro Retina Display Quality Program

MacBook Pro Retina Staining Issues

Does your MacBook Pro Retina screen look like this?

In the fall of 2015, Apple quietly introduced a program to replace displays on MacBook Pro Retina models that exhibit strange markings around the outer edge of the display. This is known as the MacBook Pro Retina Display replacement program. The best ways to describe the MacBook Pro displays that have this issue are the following:

  • Greenish metallic hues around the edges of the MacBook Pro retina display
  • Blackish-green coloring that bleeds into the viewing area on some MacBook Pros
  • Strange staining around the edges of the MacBook Pro display
  • The MacBook Pro Retina screen coating seems to be wearing away
  • Scratching near the edges of the MacBook Pro Retina screen
  • Etching near the edges of the MacBook Pro Retina displays

Capital Mac Service had this issue on our MacBook Pro Retina

MacBook Pro Retina Display Staining

MacBook Pro Retina stains can go around the entire screen

Unfortunately, the main Capital Mac Service MacBook Pro Retina began to show this screen delamination issue, starting in the corner and working its way all around the display. We contacted Apple Support and they did offer to cover the cost of a new display for our MacBook Pro Retina. 4 days later, we have the MacBook Pro back and it’s looking just like new!

Conditions for the MacBook Pro display replacement program

Some of the conditions of this Apple MacBook Pro Retina display recall include the following:

  • Expect a replacement display on your MacBook Pro from up to 3 years from your original purchase date or 1 full year from October 16, 2015, whichever one is later.
  • If you paid for a repair to fix the screen issues on the MacBook Pro, you are entitled to a refund through AppleCare.
  • If you have anything else that may be causing screen issues, such as a bad logic board, you may have to pay for that repair before you can get the free screen replacement.

You can read more about what users are calling this “Staingate,” at the website devoted to this MacBook Pro Retina screen issue, located here.