A Complete List of Apple’s Recalls (Updated 5-14-12)

I’ve compiled a list of all the known Apple recalls (aka Exchange & Repair Programs). It includes current and expired recalls (so people will know if there is a known problem with their system even if Apple won’t cover it anymore), how to identify problem models, and links directly to Apple’s site for each specific recall.

This information should be helpful for Mac techs (like myself) and fix-it-yourself users, plus anyone else hoping to troubleshoot their broken Mac.

396B5C9B-7A1A-46A5-B329-5A9CD7576F65.jpg See the complete list of Apple Recalls

* Please notify me of any errors or missing recalls.

Quickly and Neatly Open Two Pre-Specified Finder Windows Via Applescript

Several times a day on my Plex Mini I was opening the same two Finder windows (the “new downloads” folder and the “tv shows” folder) to make sure stuff in “new downloads” was being automatically transferred (using Episode Linker) to my “tv shows” folder.

Well, instead of manually opening the two Finder windows, resizing the windows, and navigating to the correct folders, I made an Applescript (with help from various other applescript sites/posts around the web) that does it automatically… Read More

Create Keyboard Shortcuts for Safari Bookmarks

For instant access to any bookmark in Safari (and probably Firefox) you can set up a keyboard shortcut to automatically open the bookmarked website.

Here’s how:

1) Go to Safari and note the exact title for the bookmark(s) you want to quickly access. In my case, it’s “wells”, “amex”, and “ing” – my banking sites.

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2) Go to Apple Menu (top left of screen), System Preferences, Keyboard & Mouse, and click the Keyboard Shortcuts tab.

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Hawk Wings’ Page o’ Apps!

Just wanna give a shout out to Hawk Wings, a website I just discovered today. This page is just filled with tons of free and cheap apps and scripts (or “plug-ins” as they call them) for the most commonly used Mac apps. I highly recommend checking it out to see what cool things your missing… for example, there’s DockStar, which allows you to “assign a separate notification badge to different mailboxes.”

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Trick to Easily Rotate Address Book Photos

Since I just bought Cyntact for my iPhone, I’ve been moving my photos from iPhoto’s “Faces” into Address Book. Unfortunately, there is no easy (free) way to do this automatically, but I did stumble upon a neat trick when adding pictures to your Address Book contacts:


Option clicking the picture allow you to rotate it!

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It’s these little hidden niceties that make me love Macs!
Oh, and option+shift will snap to the hash marks along the circle 🙂

Use Text-To-Speech (“Start Speaking Text”) in Firefox

A few days ago I made my yearly move from Safari to Firefox. It starts up quicker for me than Safari and web pages load 2-3x faster.

However, I was stumped today when I wanted my Mac to read me a Flash 101 tutorial. I went to Firefox -> Services -> Speech, but “Start Speaking Text” was grayed out.

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After a quick Google search I found a simple 2-step solution (thanks to aynmensch @ mozillazine): setup a shortcut key for “reading selected text” which can be evoked within Firefox.
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Use Airport’s “Create Network” to Access iPhone When no Wifi Available

Have you ever needed to connect to your iPhone when you don’t have a wireless network available?

Probably not, but I had to a few weeks ago, here’s why:

While on vacation I took a video using Cycorder on my iPhone. I needed to move the video to my MacBook to edit and upload it to the web. Unfortunately, the only way to get a video off the iPhone (that was taken with Cycorder) is to wirelessly connect to the iPhone and copy the video (I avoid the Terminal and just use Transmit to connect via ssh).

The problem was that even though I paid $15 for internet access at my hotel, it would only work for one device at a time (either the iPhone or the MacBook). Rather than spending another $15 to connect my MacBook and iPhone to the same network so I could copy the video, I set out to find a better (read: free) solution.

The easy 3-step solution I discovered was right under my nose:
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Create Bookmark Folder While Creating New Bookmark in Safari

In Safari, when you create a new bookmark by pressing Command+D or by clicking the “+” icon in the toolbar you see this pop-up window:

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As a highly organized bookmarker, not having the option to make a new bookmark folder from this pop-up is a big pain. As you can see, I’m bookmarking a motorcycle helmet, but don’t have a folder for “Helmets.”

BTW… a sub-hint here is that you can click the folder list (“Computers” in the above image) and start typing the first letters of the folder you want to appear instead of finding it manually in the list.

However, the problem this hint fixes is when you don’t already have a folder. The hint is that at this pop-up window, you can press Command+Shift+N – this will automatically open a new “Organize Bookmarks” window and create a new bookmark folder, ready to be named:

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Just put the folder where you want, go back to the original bookmark pop-up menu, and select the new folder you just created.

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Video: How To Remove Stuck CD From iMac / Slot Loading Optical Drive

Not too long ago I read this tip on MacOSXHints.com. It talks about using a 3.5″ floppy disk to remove a stuck CD from a slot-loading optical drive. Since I couldn’t find a 3.5″ floppy, I got an idea after reading ericdsa’s comment.

Instead of a CD or DVD as ericdsa suggested, I used two credit cards (well, the same size, shape, and material as credit cards); one wedged below the stuck cd or dvd, one wedged above the stuck cd, applied tension, and voila!

Super Easy & Quick Text Overlay on Video Using Quicktime

At first glance, Quicktime seems very basic. But I’m continually amazed at what neat little tricks it keeps tucked away. I just stumbled upon one such trick today when I was looking for an easy way to overlay text on a video (see previous post).

The overlay isn’t fancy, and I can’t find any way to customize the font or size or anything else – but if you want to avoid expensive programs and steep learning curves, just follow these 5 easy steps:

FYI… I’m pretty sure you need Quicktime Pro for this to work

1) In TextEdit, type the text you want to overlay and save as .txt file.
2) In QuickTime Player, choose File > Open File and then select the text file.
2) Choose Edit > Select All and then choose Edit > Copy.
3) Select the part of the movie you want to overlay with text.
4) Choose Edit > “Add to Selection and Scale.

See text overlay in top left:
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Get Full Keyboard Support (Shortcuts, App Switcher) in Screen Sharing

When using Screen Sharing or Remote Desktop to control another Mac on my local network, my biggest complain has always been the inability to use several important keyboard shortcuts. Things I frequently rely on, like toggling dock visibility, opening spotlight, and force-quitting applications, don’t work. Although all those functions can be accessed through other means, Application Switcher (which I use practically every minute) can only be accessed with Command+Tab.

The secret to getting full keyboard support is by running Teleport in conjunction with Screen Sharing. Teleport gives you the ability to use one keyboard and mouse to control other computers on your network.

With Teleport installed and setup, open Screen Sharing and connect to another computer on your network. Now move your mouse to the appropriate side of your display (while holding the appropriate modifier key) and “teleport” to the “screen shared” computer.

You now have full keyboard support; including use of your Function keys (for things like Expose, Dashboard, and ejecting), Command+Tab, and even Zooming (Control+2-finger-scrolling-on-trackpad)!

Watch this video for the full story:


15 Features 1Password Adds to Your Web Browser

Picture 2.jpgWith the recent $5 increase in the price of 1Password, many people are wondering if it’s worth the cost. To help you decide, consider the following features 1Password provides that you don’t get with Safari, Firefox, Opera, or any other browser:

Fill/save multiple identities – Good for forum/online store/blog registrations; keep fake/real identities and different e-mail addresses

Save credit card information – Including multiple credit card numbers, checking accounts, payment methods, and shipping addresses

iPhone/Palm password syncing (and a slick autofill feature for the iPhone, not sure about Palm)

Create auto-login bookmarks and aliases (read corewerkz article)

View password histories – See all usernames/passwords you’ve ever saved – Good for forgotten/mistyped passwords

Decide on a per-webpage-basis when to autosave and autofill user’s information

Multiple user accounts per website – Good, for example, if you have multiple G-Mail accounts

Online syncing with “my1password” servers – Access your passwords from any web browser anywhere

Export usernames/passwords – As a web page or text file; easily print all passwords for hardcopy backup

Anti-Phishing protection – Using the OpenDNS PhishTank anti-phishing service

All password information and identities available within all web browsers – Crucial if you use multiple web browsers

Better, more sophisticated, form filling and password saving – For example, Safari won’t store password information on certain sites (like some online banking websites)

Import password data from other web browsers (and keychain) into 1password – Create a master list of all your saved passwords

Easily create super-strong password from within web browser – Using 1Password’s “Strong Password Generator” which now includes the ability to generate pronounceable and hash-based passwords

User adjustable “lock after X minutes of inactivity” – Or choose to keep unlocked after first 1Password login

Fresh Apps #5 :: The Freshest Mac OS X & iPhone Applications

Fresh Apps is a brief summary of the interesting applications I’ve discovered over the past week.

Mac Applications

BootXChanger :: Freeware
Change your Mac’s boot image from the Apple logo to your own custom graphic

SoundConverter :: Shareware ($14 to remove 500kb file size restriction)
A great bulk sound file converter with support for dozens of formats — the only other app like this I know is Barbabatch for $400

NewsFire :: Freeware
After about a year of frustration using RSSMenu, I finally made the move to the RSS reader I hear about most — NewsFire — and I love it. Beautiful interface, intuitive shortcut keys, super easy setup and tweaking

iPhone Applications

iPhoneVideoRecorder :: Shareware ($20 to remove 30 sec recording limit)
Records an unlimited length including audio (plus, you can adjust input level), records to super small mpeg4 format (1 hour = 60MB!), 15 FPS, different video sizes & audio recording settings to choose from, and send your movies via e-mail to anyone! Read my full review

• Flashlight :: Free (on installer.app)
A flashlight. Drag finger across screen to adjust brightness, double click to exit – simple & effective

• iLevel :: Free (on installer.app)
I needed a level when working on my motorcycle yesterday, it was quicker to download this than run up to my apartment — this thing is great, but I think there is a better one I used to have, anyone know the name?

iFob :: Free (on installer.app)
Meet other iFob users near your current location, chat, read profiles, meet new people – I’ve yet to run into anyone else using it (it seems people must be within a few feet of you to show up), but I’ll keep trying

TuneWiki :: Free (on installer.app)
Downloads and displays lyrics to songs in real time (think: karaoke); includes shuffle mode and nice layout (with cover art and permanent track progress bar and playback buttons) similar to the iPod application; would be nice if you could view lyrics of currently playing iPod song – instead of having to play in TuneWiki

iPac3D :: Free (on installer.app)
A 3D version of PacMac mixed with Doom bad guys; still beta and pretty basic; coolest part is using the accelerometer (by physically rotating and moving around your iphone) to move back, forward, left, and right – can’t wait for a racing car game that uses the accelerometer for steering!!

An In-Depth Look at My Jailbroken / Hacked iPhone – Page 1: Frequently Used Apps

Although I often hear reports about how many people have Jailbroken their iPhones (meaning they “hacked” their iPhone so they can install 3rd party applications), I’ve yet to meet ANYONE else with a hacked one.

Anytime I use my phone in front of someone, they are immediately impressed and wowed by the amount and variety of applications, it’s custom look, and the enhanced functionality added to my iPhone (well… and the Otterbox, but I’ve covered that already).

Instead of breaking it down time-after-time, explaining what every application does, I’m using this forum to explore all details of my phone – page by page; app by app (except the pre-installed ones).

My iPhone came installed with firmware 1.1.3. I’ve jailbroken it a couple times, but the last time I used ZiPhone (I’ve also used iNdependence, iJailbreak, and jailbreakme.com). ZiPhone is especially nice because (if it works correctly) it installs a program called “installer.app” — the gateway to most iPhone applications.

I currently have 5 pages on my phone:

Page 1 : Frequently used apps
Page 2 : Less frequently used apps
Page 3 : Springdial phone numbers
Page 4 : System Tools / Tweaks
Page 5 : Games

Today I’ll be showing you Page 1 : Frequently Used Applications

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Fresh Apps :: The Freshest Mac OS X & iPhone Applications

Fresh Apps is a brief summary of the interesting applications I’ve discovered over the past week.

Mac Applications

Simplify Media :: Free
Share your iTunes library with up to 30 friends from anywhere in the world — connect to your friend’s iTunes libraries from within iTunes; works on Mac, PC, and iPhone!

Wallsaver :: Freeware
Set your screen saver as your desktop background; super easy to install/uninstall

Subliminal Message Pro :: Shareware ($10)
Flash custom messages on your screen with very short durations (i.e. 15ms); I keep it running at all times to help facilitate the “Law of Attraction”

TimeMachineEditor :: Freeware
Tell TimeMachine exactly when to run (i.e. once a week, every Friday, at midnight).

Chax :: Freeware
iChat plug-in includes many cool little features; my favorite: one buddy list for ALL contacts (.Mac + AIM + Jabber + etc)

iPhone Applications

Simplify Media :: Free
Connect to up to 30 friend’s iTunes libraries; includes the ability to shuffle; a little buggy, a little slow, only works with wifi connection, and completely awesome!

Twinkle :: Free (on installer.app)
Currently the best iPhone twitter app; geo-location stamping, take/attach pictures, see tweets near you (can’t even do that on twitter’s site!)

iBlacklist :: Shareware (on installer.app)
Block specified phone numbers from calling or texting; limit of 3 blocked numbers before purchasing; very clean interface

Showtime :: Donationware (on installer.app)
Record 5 seconds of video (unlimited length with $10 donation); still no audio yet but hopefully coming soon

Wow! Google Maps adds Accident & Construction indicators!

Just checking the traffic from Burbank to Venice today when I noticed that Google has expanded their “traffic” view to include traffic accidents and construction warnings, including a description of the accident or construction taking place!

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