8 June 2011

Cleaning up the house

This particular blogger weblog is, as you may have noticed, defunct. I decided to aggregate all my content in my own personal weblog. Although my personal weblog has bits of non-Apple related news, the "Mac Newbie" RSS feed remains the same and will only be filled with Apple-related news, so there's no need to change feeds.

Nevertheless, if you're interested in other subjects like tech, funny stuff, movies, tv shows, books, games, etc..., you can always subscribe to my full RSS feed.


27 November 2009

Google Wave Invitations

I've been using Google Wave for a while now and they were kind enough to send some invitations for me to distribute around. So, I have 3 left. If you want one, just leave a comment here or send a reply/DM on Twitter with your e-mail address.

Geek alert: I'll be using FIFO as the sorting protocol in case there are more candidates than the number of invitations. Good luck :-)

29 October 2009

How to recover emails from .emlx files in Mail

The other day I was transferring some emails from one IMAP account to another (in Mail) and suddenly when a error occurred I noticed that, not only the emails did not transferred to the destination IMAP account, the original emails disappeared from the original source IMAP account.

My first thought was (right after the cursing): "well, I can use Time Machine to recover the emails by restoring the corresponding folder in the Mail archive folder". And so I did. But for my surprise, that only restored a bunch of .emlx files (one for each email) and when I opened Mail again, the folder was still empty. I guess it tries to consult the server version first and since it is now empty, it won't show you any emails.

So I'm stuck with these .emlx and have no idea how to put the emails back on Mail. However, using some Google-fu, I was again able to find this very useful blog post that perfectly explains how one can use .emlx files to import emails back to Mail. Enjoy

26 October 2009

My new Macbook

So my old Macbook Pro decided to check out to the notebooks' heaven a bit earlier than I was expecting. A faulty logic board forced me into buying a new computer since the repair cost was larger than just buying a new Macbook. And since Apple decided to revamp the Macbook just last week, I saw this as an opportunity to get me a Unibody White Macbook 13'', 2,26 GHz CPU and 2GB RAM.

The new Macbook is really good value for the current price ($999 US dollars; around 899€ but I got it cheaper than that) and since I didn't want to spend much money right now, it seemed like the right choice.

The initial setup was exactly like when I first booted my MBP, more than 2 years ago, simple and easy. And with the beauty of the Time Machine simplicity, I had my data running on my new notebook in less than an hour.

I don't regret changing to a smaller screen display, since my work doesn't really require me to have a large display. And since the netbook wave started, I craved for a smaller computer to carry around and even though the MBP was slim enough, it was still a large computer.

The new trackpad takes a bit of time to get used to but I'm loving the new multi-touch features. The glossy screen is not bad at all and that was something that I was afraid of not liking. But for working in normal light conditions, it is absolutely stunning.

One thing that I absolutely love and that is completely different from the MBP is the fact that this Macbook doesn't get hot to the point of burning my fingers if I decided to touch the area just above the Function Keys, when the CPU was running at 100%. This is obviously related to not being made of aluminum (which means it is not as light as the MBP 13'') but it is definitely more comfortable.

Unfortunately, the 4GB RAM I had on the MBP are not compatible with this Macbook, which is a shame because I just bought it (a few months ago) and now I can't use it. If anyone's interested, contact me and we might be able to make business :-)

28 September 2009

Well, this is just embarassing

Really, it is. I just noticed that my iTunes was no longer allowing me to use half-star ratings and then I remembered that the upgrade to Snow Leopard must have screwed that up. So, I did a quick Google search for "activate half-star ratings" to try to fix it again.

And guess what was the first result. That's right: this one.

2 September 2009

Installing Snow Leopard (on a Mac OS X Tiger machine)

So, as you may know (and probably getting tired of knowing by now) I upgraded to Snow Leopard. The process was very simple and there's really no point in doing a thorough analysis of it, so I'll just leave some photos that I took while waiting.

Just before that, a few tips for those of you that want to upgrade as well:

  • Backup your old data before upgrading
  • Have you backup everything? No, go ahead... I'll wait
  • And when you think you've backup everything just make a final check :-)
  • Then insert the disc and install Mac OS X 10.6 a.k.a. Snow Leopard
Chances are that everything will go smoothly and no problems will arise from installing the new operating system. But since uncle Murphy is always looking waiting for the right moment to appear, you might as well be prepared with all your data safe somewhere.

Another quick note: this post is about my experience which consisted on upgrading from Mac OS X 10.4 (Tiger) to 10.6. So, this post is not really helpful to those of you upgrading from Leopard.

I bought the Mac Box Set (which includes Mac OS X 10.6, iLife'09 and iWork'09). Yeah, I know I could have just bought the $29 update package that can also do the upgrade from Tiger, but didn't so for two reasons:
  1. I would be in violation of Apple's license agreement
  2. I wouldn't have iLife'09 and iWork'09
So, with the package on my desk, it was quite easy to see what I should do:

(I like these little messages that Apple pust on the packages with "slight" hints of what to do)

After inserting the DVD, one clear difference from the Leopard upgrading process was that installing it from Tiger, requires restarting the machine right from the beginning of the installation process:

After a quick restart, the installation process asks which language you want to use:

And then, you're ready to start the installation. In my case, I decided to wipe clean the hard disk with the Disk Utility to make sure that all the accumulated garbage I had on the previous version of Mac OS X (yes, I backup everything before. Did you?)

After cleaning up the hard disk, it was time to start the real installation:

Obviously, the "time remaining" part of the installation process is never accurate and it more or less bounced from 30 minutes to 28, back to 29 and then to 26 (for a really long time), then 23 and then going on normally until 11 minutes and then suddenly it finishes. So, in total it took about 26 minutes to finish this part. At this point, I decided to read the manual that comes with the disc and get myself acquainted with the novelties in 10.6.

After copying all the files and restarting "again", the new OS boots with the usual flying "welcome" messages in several different languages:

And then after just setting up the usual stuff (language and keyboard preferences, user accounts, etc...)...

... I was ready to use my new Mac OS X:

So, from start to finish, I took exactly 48 minutes to upgrade. Not bad for a clean install.
After that, I just inserted the iLife'09 DVD, installed it and then the same for the iWork'09. More or less 10 minutes for each.

Loving the new Operating System

Yes, it's fast... and I mean really fast. Clicking on folders and files seems to open these a lot faster and navigation is usually more fluid. The new features (remember that I was coming from Tiger) like Spaces, Time Machine and Stacks are really cool.

Recovering my data was quite straightforward and I didn't face any major problems (except one that I'll mention bellow) so in a couple of hours I had my machine up and running almost like the previous version.

Now for the boring part

The boring part was in fact checking compatibilities for applications. I backup my previously installed applications so that I could use them now. Most of them worked without any problems, but some of them required installing new versions. And not so amusing, some of them are only available for Snow Leopard in beta versions. Which means that bugs may surface. But so far, it has been quite peaceful.

The only app that I'm having a hard time is QuickSilver. Because I use it all the time and some of its plugins are not yet available in the 10.6 version, in some ways it is more or less useless for me right now.

I also had some problems with a few of my calendars. I have 5 calendars that I used in the previous version of iCal (in Tiger). I backed up everything but when it was time to import them to the new iCal, only 2 of them imported successfully. I don't know why, but for some reason those other 3 calendars were being very stubborn.

Since I heard that Snow Leopard now had built-in support for Google Calendar integration with iCal, I decided to try the following:
  1. Create new calendars on Google Calendar
  2. Import the information of the 3 non-working calendars to Google Calendar
  3. Synchronize with iCal
Guess what? It worked perfectly. Now, I have GCalendar <-> iCal dual integration working perfectly.
Why didn't the calendars import on iCal and did so on Google Calendar, I'll never know. But it's good to know that Google is always here to help :-) By the way, the same built-in integration between Google Contacts (and Yahoo Contacts) and Address Book is also available, provided that you use iSync for the synchronization process.

So, in the end I'm quite pleased with this process and it was a lot less painful than I thought it would be. I fully recommend upgrading to Snow Leopard but bare in mind that some of the applications may not work in Snow Leopard. So, do your homework, and check the compatibilities beforehand.

1 September 2009

Snow Leopard has arrived

So, as I told you a few days ago, I pre-ordered the Mac Box Set, since (as you may know if you are an avid reader of this blog) I was still running Mac OS X 10.4 (Tiger) on my Macbook Pro.

And it arrived yesterday. I immediately started the installation and everything went quite smoothly. I still haven't had the time to really experiment everything so I still won't be able to write a complete tutorial on this for now (maybe tomorrow). But rest assure that, in any way, I regret being an early-adopter. I encountered a few minor setbacks but everything had an easy fix.

So, until my next post. Bye bye.

27 August 2009

Snow Leopard, here we go!

Yep, I've pre-ordered Mac OS X 10.6, a.k.a. Snow Leopard. Now, it's just a matter of waiting for the package to arrive. More news to come...bye for now!

17 July 2009

The iCal day

Did you notice that today is the only day of the year in which the iCal icon on the Dock doesn't change once you open it? :-)