Thursday, October 31, 2013

Adobe & Mavericks

Be careful upgrading or updating Adobe apps under Mavericks. They may not install completely or correctly, telling you to uninstall previous versions, except uninstalling them may not work completely or correctly.

I went to upgrade to Adobe Drive 5, having both Adobe Drive CS5 and Adobe Drive 4 on the Mac. The installation shows the pathname to Adobe 4 than a new Adobe 5 folder, and then it bailed saying I had to uninstall Adobe Drive 4.

When I ran the uninstall Adobe Drive 4, it bailed saying I needed some other Adobe software or I could reboot and try again. Rebooting allowed me to uninstall Adobe Drive 4 but installing Adobe Drive 5 bailed with an incomplete installation in the Adobe 4 Drive folder.

But the real problem came during the installation it hung my Finder window and Finder app. I had to a force quit of finder but then just rebooted to recover the system. I'm not sure if Adobe has fully tested all their apps with Mavericks, and especially the installation.

I suspect the individual apps in Creative Suite are fine, it's the system access ones which may has issues or problems with Mavericks, so be careful and to Adobe, please fix it.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

What we learned

What we have learned about President Obama is that he believes in the omnivorous covert surveillence and intelligence gathering on everyone in the world, including the leaders of governments supposedly our allies in the world, and in the endless, limited, covert war on terrorism fought not with armies but drones and special operations forces.

What we have learned about President Obama is that he is a more miltaristic president that the worst Republican and most intrusive one on the rights, protections, privacy and liberities of Americans. He is simply our worst nightmare of what we thought a bad Republican could and would be as President.

What we have learned about President Obama is that we wouldn't vote for him in 2008 knowing what he has become and what he has allowed this country to become. We simply don't trust him or anything he says anymore. He lies through his smiles and his words.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Intego Backup Manager Pro

I run Intego's Backup Manager Pro to 3 external HD's along with Apple's Time Machine backup. It's been a good backup application doing 4 backups overnight, specifically a HD clone, a HD user folder sync, and backups of the 3 other internal HD's.

Well, the application broke with Mavericks for two reasons. First, as noted, I didn't set the App Nap to disable Apple app nap program for the application and it stalled and then hung. Then after setting it to "Prevent App Nap" it ran amuck using all 13+ GB's before stalling and hanging.

The folks at Intego said to uninstall and reinstall it from the CD (the uninstall on the CD), except the install was a download and Intego doesn't have the uninstall on their Website anymore, if they even had it. So it was off to the Internet via Google.

I save all of my old .dmg install files so I have an old copy of the software to install but I don't have the uninstall, but here's what I found and tried.

First, using the terminal window, go to the directory using the command

cd /Library/StartupItems/'Intego Backup Manager Pro'

Doing a list of the directory you'll find a file

Now run the shell as root, using the command

sudo sh

Enter the root password and wait.

Then reinstall the application from a .dmg file you have and it should work right again with all your scheduled backup setups. You can test it by running them.

Lessons from Mavericks

Here's what I've learned so far with OS-X 10.9 Mavericks.

First and foremst, Apple made changes which don't make sense for users, mentioned in lessons, and really decided to pull a Microsoft trick and dumb down their software taking some features and tools away and changing some to be less useful and productive. Really stupid.

Second, and almost foremost, many third-party app companies have had more than enough time to develop and test new updates or upgrades, so where are they? I've had far too many apps fail and no update or upgrade available. It's really a WTF moment with them too.

What angers me more now is that the response from some of the app companies is something you expect from Microsoft and their third-party app companies, "Just uninstall and reinstall the software, then talk to us." Really?

Ok, the lessons.

One, Safari bookmarks. Apple took away the really neat edit bookmarks page in lieu of the new sidebar, but the new edit bookmarks page is worse if you want to edit or move bookmarks when you have a lot of them, like hundreds in a lot of folders and subfolders. And there's no good third-party bookmarks editor.

Two, more of the same app. They changed adding bookmarks to the top of the folder list instead of the bottom. Why? No reason than they can and did. In additon clicking on the "+" since in the url bar doesn't always add the bookmark. You need to use the menu option.

Three, a big one here with apps. Apple added the "App Nap" option, but to disable it you have to get the info for each application (click on app and "get info" button) to set "Prevent app nap" option. This is important as this interfers with many apps, like backups, streaming, processing, etc. which will stall or bail out.

So, walk through you apps and set them to prevent app nap. This feature is for laptops and unncessary for iMacs or Mac Pros. But then check the app to make sure it runs correctly afterward.

Four, Menu Bar. Apple changed where they start on the menu bar from a nice, orderly right to left to the new purely random order. This is really stupid if you want to keep the apps in the same order after every reboot. This needs to be fixed!

Five, Menu Bar redux. Apple changed the sandbox rules where many apps which open and close the window from the menu bar don't work anymore. The app just sits on the menu bar doing nothing.

Six, Apple's Activity Monitor app. What happened to the HD disk information tool? All you get is the one HD, none of the other HD's. For that you need another app or something, or as sometimes I find, I'm missing something.

Seventh, Apple supposedly made the purge command unnecessary, requiring admin. password to invoke the command, but if you watch the memory usage, you'll see something quite the opposite. Now reboot consumes 1.5 GB's where it was a few 100 MB's you could purge.

Now the memory comes back. It's now "File Cache" which is something other than inactive memory too but still that cache eats memory like a relative's hungry family at a $5 all-you-can-eat buffet which is your computer.

Really, and sometimes you can't release the memory even after the app is closed, necessitating rebooting.

Anyway, that's the list to date. Right now, most of my menu bar apps have issues or don't work and I hate trying to get them into the order they started under Mountain Lion. And I've lost some apps, eg. Intego Backup Manager, which the company used the MS response (above) but forgot to send instructions of how to do that.

Friday, October 25, 2013

More Notes on Mavericks

A quick note to remind folks, the installation of OS-X Mavericks doesn't include Java, from Apple and removes Oracle's Java from your system. You have to reinstall Apple's Java to be current again and then install Oracle's Java, in that order, so Oracles runs your Java applications, eg. Safari, etc.

I know many people hate Java and don't recommend having it, especially with Safari, but some Websites use them for interacting or presenting real-time streaming, and I haven't had any issues with Oracle's version since it's always newer and updated more frequently than Apple's version.

On another note I restarted Time Machine, which I turned off under Mountain Lion because every few days the backup went nuts and ran for 4-8 hours for no reason, eating tons of memory on the TC which it then had to erase to add new backups when it got full. I stopped it and erased the disk.

Under the new memory allocation, the Time Machine runs faster and finishes sooner, taking just over 9 hours for a complete backup it previously took 16+ hours, but still taking the normal 3-5 minutes for the hourly backups. So far, it hasn't run amuck, yet.

What's interesting is that the faster backup eats memory. I shutdown everything for it and during the process, it literally used 13+ GB's pushing the cpu to the maximum 16 GB and compressing files to accommodate it. It didn't fully recover the inactive memory after it was done, leaving 9+ GB of files in the cache. A bug, maybe.

I still have about half my menu bar apps broken and a few major apps broken, eg. Fidelia (audio player) or with issues or problems. I'm not sure who's at fault since Apple released Mavericks to developers months ago to have updates available when it was released.

Anyway, that's it for now. I'll add more as I find it.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Notes on OS-X Maverick

Well, playing some more with a few of Apple's app under OS-X 10.9, Mavericks, it seems to me Apple is becoming more like Microsoft in restricting users with their apps to specific, dumb-downed options, tools and features, and making the more than the casual user disliking the software.

You can read all the reports, articles and blogs on all the "cool" stuff you can do, all so easy and "trust us" that it's ok. Yeah, if that's how you use your Mac, but if you're in between that user and the experienced user, meaning you like more flexibility and latitude with apps, then you're toast.

I'm kinda' one of those who like to know what's under the hood, so I learn enough to understand the idea or concept and the basic logic and reasoning to things, but I'm more a hands on user with some apps, which is where Mavericks really sucks as the changes didn't add new things but changed things for the better and worse.

In the case of Safari, I liked Safari 6.x under Mountain Lion where I could keep a bookmarks tab open and wander through then to click on the ones I wanted to visit. The major folders were in a column on the left with the major and sub-folders on the right for the major folder you clicked in the column.

It was easy to edit and move links around. That's gone. The bookmarks are now a move in/out sidebar you can't edit or move folders or links, only click. The edit bookmark Web page is like a finder type list view. Meaning if you have a long list of folders, it's work moving links around.

In addition if you click and link and come back to the bookmarks page, all the folders are compressed again. In Safari 6, it remembered where you left and kept you there, so you can continue to other links in the same folder or subfolder(s).

Now you have to reopen each succeeding subfolder every time. How dumb is that? Why couldn't they have kept the old edit bookmarks with the new sidebar bookmarks? Not rocket science, but then they're not changing things for folks like me.

What I do like is the way it handles memory, using each tab for it's only memory allocation, and closing the tab, removes the memory. This is better than one giant memory cache. It's more daemons and work, but better use of memory.

One of the few good changes they made with memory, the rest are argueable about being good or not. Really, because it uses more total memory for the same apps than Mountain Lion, about 1+ GB more over 10-12 GB's. And the purge command is really meaningless now as the memory quickly jumps back to the pre-purge level.

As for mail, it's relatively the same. I really hate they dropped the remote server (host) window to manage e-mail from your Mac. You have go to those Websites to manage it or use the preferences to remove it but that option doesn't discern any you want on the host, it deletes all of the inbox.

There was no reason to remove the remote window, because to run the delete you have to do what exactly what they removed this window in the first place, send the unencrypted password over the Internet. That's a WTF moment I'd like to ask them personally about.

Outside of that and losing about half my menu bar apps, Mavericks isn't a must upgrade from the users persepective as from Apple's who's forcing you to upgrade to match your iPhone and/or iPad IOS 7 system and the iCloud options.

And yes, I hate IOS 7 too. The icons reminds me a kindergarten class designed them. Fortunately my iPad is still on IOS 5 for the few things I use it for, which is mostly documents, but yes, I'll replace it with the new iPad next year with IOS 7.

For now I'm just waiting for the applications to be updated on the App Store, but I'm not holding my breath as I've had a few going back to early this year waiting for updates available on their companies' Website since they stopped sending Apple updates.

Really, it's why I don't recommend buying on the App Store unless it's the only choice. Otherwise, buy it from the company but make sure their a recognized developer or Maverick may not allow or run it.

Apple is being Microsoft, and I hate Microsoft (long story from work computer and computer geeks).

OS-X Mavericks Summary

Here's what I know to date, so you can forget the two previous rants. I was and still am angry at Apple for their habit of dropping cool tools and features some informed, meaning not just mindless users as Apple likes, want to see and know about their Mac and applications.

First, the Activity Monitor is almost completely different, more so with how they define memory. Active memory is now App Memory, inactive memory is now File Cache. Adjust your thinking to their new vocabulary. Same information, different words.

The purge command, which to some seems unnecessary, is useful since the inactive, er file cache, memory can under Mountain Lion and especially now under Mavericks get huge, like 1 GB and even 2-3 GB, meaning it has to start compressing or swapping space. That's not performance, but just wasteful design.

The menu bar apps don't start in the order they do under previous versions. Before they added right to left in the order you opened them. Now it's almost random, and if you want them in order, you have to kill and reopen them until the show in the far left place. A bug they need to fix.

They broke a number of apps which are accessed from the menu bar. They removed a commonly used library or functions, eg. CGContextErase, and sandboxing denies hid control which freeze the app (the feature which open and hides it by clicking on it in the menu bar icon). This includes some social network apps, like Twitter, Facebook, etc.

Mail no longer has the remote server window to control the mail on the remote (host) server. I don't know why they did this stupid stunt except Apple doesn't want you now to send unencrypted passwords to those server. They did with all previous versions of mail but not this one.

This means you have to use the preferences to remove the mail on the server, which of courses send the unencrypted password to the server (Gee, oxymoron there with Apple?) to delete the mail there, and it deletes all the mail, meaning you can't store mail there as backup, it's removed by the mail app if you set it.

Apple iBooks. Ok, you can now read them on your Mac. That's a start, but you still can't print the damn thing! What's good if you can't print pages, sections or a chapter if you don't want to read it on the Mac, but make notes or take it somewhere. Oh, yes, use your iPhone or iPad, but even then, still you can only read it, you can't print any pages.

This is why I don't buy iBooks unless there's no choice, and why some authors only provide their books in iBooks beside the obvious it was produced in iBooks Author which only makes iBook for the Apple bookstore, is beyond me.

Safari bookmarks format is different, and sucks is an understatement if you edit or more  bookmarks and have an extensive list of folders and subfolders. Trying to move bookmarks around the window is cumbersome where the old version you could move them in steps without scrolling.

Again, Apple forgets real users in places of the user who doesn't seem to care how bookmarks are handled, just where they are. And I couldn't find a third-party app to edit and move bookmarks in a simple user interface like the old multi-column format.

If you're like me and like the bookmarks bar the opening page in one tab, you have to use the menu bar option now to "edit bookmarks" to open that format. Hitting the column button in the favorites bar only shows the bookmarks, you can't do anything with them.

Safari now puts each tab or window as a separate daemon and when you close a tab or window, it removes the active memory (killing the daemon), but keeps it in cache, somewhere different now than before. There are no more Webpage previews. So much for the cache cleaner apps.

Apple seems to like to keep the third-party app companies working with each update and more so each upgrade.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

OS-X Mavericks II

After playing with OS-X 10.9 Mavericks, I would say in a word if you're thinking of upgrading to it:


What they did was screw up some of the menu bar apps which don't run, but more so the apps won't start in the right position (right to left in order of opening). It eats memory like it's at a free byte buffet (inactive memory is now file cache in the Activity Monitor). It screwed up the Safari bookmarks editing tools and can't hide top sites. And it screwed up mail (no window to remote mail servers).

There's more but I haven't found them yet. And while all the people tout the new tools and features, Apple screwed up the basic useful ones along with some really dumb shit moves (like the menu bar).

They redid memory use, removing some memory when you close things, like tabs in Safari, but eats memory just on rebooting (like over 1 GB) and seems to eat memory just sitting along with reserving memory for closed apps. Each upgrade and update seems to need more memory for doing nothing but rebooting, let alone actually opening apps.

[Update the next morning the file cache was 2.8 GB with no major app open except Safari and the small ones on the menu bar. After the purge command, which now takes the administrator password to run, reduced it to 150 MB, but then using Safari tabs, went to 900 MB.

I can't think who thought this was a great idea, but if you're like me and end up using 12+ GB for apps when working, the file cache will be the restricting factor on the system performance. I will test this this week/weekend, but I don't see it's a good way to run a computer.]

So, don't upgrade until they resolve some of these bugs and the third-party applications companies get their upgrades out to the App Store where most of them are available, provided they don't charge for the upgrade.

OS-X Mavericks

Update.-- I added some notes to the next post on Mavericks about memory.

Well, I updated the Mac Pro to OS-X 10.9, Mavericks, in part to see if Apple fixed some problems and get away from some things I didn't like with Mountain Lion. Well, it's the old adage about the grass and the other side of the fence. And the verdict?

It's worthwhile if you don't like Mountain Lion, but Mavericks has some new issues I like and don't like, mostly what small things I find annoying which I liked with Mountain Lion and don't like with Mavericks.

For one, they supposedly changed how inactive memory with the purge command is handled, eliminating the need to clean it out, but after installing a lot of updates through the App store, it was useful to do, except now you need to be system administrator and enter your password than just the command. Stupid.

Next, it eats memory, especially just sitting there. It doesn't seem to release memory of apps you close, maybe just in case you want them again, maybe. Not! It seems to be a continuation of Mountain Lion with this hidden memory, or at least I can't find.

Safari. Well, it's just more of what there was but they changed the bookmarks. I liked the old version of them with the folder column and the subfolder column. That's gone or I can't find how to recreate it. The old version was easier to move bookmarks. The new version sucks.

And it doesn't remember where you keep the colum divider. I like the finder column view for bookmarks this doesn't have now. And you can't hide the top sites link on the favorites bar. I don't want and don't need it, but I can't find how or where to hide or remove it.

It sometimes seems Apple doesn't think much of users to give them control over the apps for simple things. Stupid again. Looks like a good bookmark editor is in order. Any takers Apple?

Ok, mail. Same as the old mail except one big thing. The command i to open the remote mailboxes is gone, or again, it's not obvious anymore, meaning you have to go to those Websites individually to remove the mail in the remote boxes.

This is what the command i did, open those boxes, but apparently Apple redesigned it for some reason to remove a simple thing into nothing or hidden. Beats me now but this really sucks big time on their part.

Well, iTunes seems the same interface and operation, and it still does not load all the album artwork and keep it in active memory when you open iTunes. This was the default in iTunes 10 which was dropped in iTunes 11 for better memory usage, but they didn't give the user the choice if their computer had the memory. What's the word? Stupid.

Well, there's always something. Apparently there's no consistent positioning on apps which use the menu bar, or if there is, it's not obvious. With Mountain Lion, the new one was always on the left of the last one. With Mavericks, it's hit and miss where it's at.

I'm not sure who was the person(s) who screwed this up but this is really stupid as the apps just position themselves anywhere. In addition many are bailing out with error messages about obsolete libraries. So I have to wait for updates for them but please Apple fix the menu bar location problem.

That's it for now. So far it's the same stuff, Apple acting like Microsoft to dummy down things and not trust users with their own computer.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Getting Paid

While over 800,000 government workers are now furloughed, including Congressional staffers, and almost all the government workers, including Congressional staffers, won't get paid through the furlough, all the members of the House and Senate will get paid as "essential" government employees.

Really, the people who voted to shutdown the government still get a paycheck. It's why they can stand in front of all those microphones and rail about "the government", forgetting they're also part of the very same government, they're getting a government check!