How to make your Mac feel like new!

How to make your Mac feel like new!

Upgrade to an SSD

The single biggest improvement you can make to an old MacBook is to upgrade its traditional spinning hard drive to a solid-state drive. You’ll be shocked at the huge impact it has on performance.


Reduce log-in items

If your Mac is slow to boot up, the problem may be that there are too many applications to open at startup. It’s likely you never set them to launch at startup — they launch by default. Go to System Preferences > Users & Groups and then click on the Login Items tab to see a list of the apps that open when you boot your Mac. Highlight the apps you don’t want to open at startup and click the minus-sign button below the list of apps.


Reclaim space from crowded hard drive

With a hard drive near full capacity, any computer will begin to slow down. To see how much space you have left on your Mac’s drive, click on the Apple button in the upper-left corner and click About This Mac. Next, click on the Storage tab to view how much free space remains.


Repair permissions

When you install an app on your Mac, the piece of software arrives as part of a package of files, including permissions that tell OS X which users can do what things with specific files. Over time, these permissions can get changed, resulting in your Mac slowing down. Repairing these disk permissions, in the most basic terms, amounts to reshuffling and re-dealing these permissions so that they return to their rightful place. To address this, OS X has a built-in tool called Disk Utility that does just the trick.

Open Disk Utility, select your hard drive from the left panel, click the First Aid button and then click Run to repair your hard drive.


Get better battery life

Powering your MacBook’s display is the battery’s biggest job. If you lower the brightness level, you’ll get longer battery life. Open System Preferences and click Display. On the Display tab, you’ll see a slider for Brightness. Lower it to a point between super bright and depressingly dull.

There is another display-related setting on the Energy Saver area of System Preferences. Check the box for Slightly dim the display while on battery power. Keeping your display running while your laptop sits unattended is a needless waste of battery resources. On the Energy Saver page, you can set times for Computer Sleep and Display Sleep, both of which spring into action if your MacBook sits idle for a period of time. Set as short a time as you’re comfortable with for the Battery tab; it’s less important for the Power Adapter tab.

How to use Beautiful Windows Spotlight images as your wallpaper

We hear from clients all the time how gorgeous the images are on their lock screen, but they cant find a way to set them as their wallpaper. Up until this point there was no “easy” way to save them. You would have to use batch files, create file extensions and more…ugh! Who wants to do that? not me. So we found a great application available for FREE in the Windows Store that does all the work for you. It even allows you to capture Microsoft Bing images as well. It’s called “Dynamic Theme” This link will take you right to it.

Don’t forget to share this page with your friends, and as always reach out to us for all your computer needs.

3 different ways to backup your computer.

 Backup, why? We hear all the time from our clients that they’re not backing up their computers because they don’t know how. Windows has free solutions built right into the OS, most just aren’t aware they are there. It’s now easier than ever.

Device users previously opted to back up their files as a means to prepare for restoration in the event their hard drive crashed. Now, users are facing a different threat — ransomware. If a device becomes corrupted by this form of malware, the only way to restore files is from backups. If these files are not current, the user faces the loss of any files that have yet to be backed up.

To prevent the loss of files users can backup their files in these three ways:

3 Backup Methods to Keep Your Data Secure

  1. Within your computer you have the ability to back up your files.  This method will save your files within your PC, and is not highly recommended.  The reason being, if your computer becomes infected with malware, or crashes, it is likely you will lose these your backup files as well.  However, if you would like to use this method, you need to:
    1. Access your Control Panel
    2. Go to System and Security
    3. Backup and Restore
    4. Set up backup
    5. Upon doing these things, you will likely get the following message: 
    6. You can save your files to your computer, but it is recommended you use an external device.
  2. Saving your data to an external device.  External devices include USB drives, Solid State Drives (SSDs), Compact Disks, etc.  This method is highly recommended because if your PC becomes infected with malware, or crashes, you will have an external device to regain access to all of your files.  This external device can be used to upload all of your data to another PC, or to your existing PC once it is fixed.  When purchasing an external device, please keep in mind how much storage you will need.  We can help you determine that size. You are able to purchase external storage devices right from out retail store on Apache Trail.
  3. You can also back up your files using cloud storage.  This includes, Google Drive, OneDrive and Drop Box to name a few.  These services are often free of charge.  The risk you run with using this form of storage is if hackers were able to breach any of these services.  Unlike external drives, when you upload your data to these services, you’re trusting a third-party to keep them safe.  By choosing an external device, you keep your data in your possession.

Beyond the Backup

Ultimately the backup method users choose is theirs.  Regardless of which option picked, backing up your data is critical.  With the growing cyber threats, it no longer seems to be a question of if, but when. Users never know when a malware infection may hit, or when your trusty hard drive is going to crash.  Once this happens, the data could be gone forever.  The only real hope of restoring it is having backup files available.

Once you start backing up your files, it is important you maintain them.  This means keeping them updated and ensuring they are free from malware. Keep in mind, we offer personalized 1 on 1 training right at our store, and you can always call us with any questions at (480) 380-5340.

Backup to your own computer, Bits and Bytes

My computer is running hot, what can I do???

Is your computer running hot? Did you know that your computers cooling system is the heart of your machine. If left unmaintained, a number of terrible things can happen. It can shut down at random, run slower, decrease the lifespan of your computer and in some rare cases, catch fire. There is some good news… YOU can prevent it!
Here’s how: If you have never had your computers cooling system “professionally” serviced, and it’s 2 years old or more the time is NOW. Bring your Laptop, Desktop, or All-In-One to our store where we’ll completely disassemble it and begin the service.
1st, we remove ALL dust and debris you’ve accumulated. Next, we remove the fan and heatsink to replace your old dried-out thermal paste and apply fresh Arctic Silver paste in it’s place. While inside we perform a visual inspection of all other components making sure they are still running at an optimal level. When that’s complete we reassemble your computer and you’re good to go. After that you can actually maintain it on your own! All you need is a can of compressed air, something small like a paper clip, and a little precision. For a more in-depth description on how to maintain it on your own after the deep clean or to schedule your professional 1st time cleaning service give us a call at 480-380-5340.

Computer running hot, what can I do???