OTW – Tariq Wahr

Renewal: 31/10/2014

Hi Tariq

Welcome to your ‘On the Wing’ Support Page. Below you’ll find brief notes from our ‘On the Wing’ calls including any useful links. The calls – or Home Visits – are listed in descending order with the most recent at the top. If you have a call that takes more time and requires a recharge, or you have had a chargeable Home Visit, you will see a payment button here at the top of the page.

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29/11/2013 – System Analysis and Diagnostics Session

1. Disk warrior findings:
Both the Macmini and the 17″ PowerBook exhibited issues around Volume Info. This explains difficulties at boot. Also both were slow to index which may indicate difficulties in finding files that may relate to muddled storage strategies. The files placed at Root level on the hard disk rather than in the user space are probably the worst offenders. On the Powerbook there are issues too with a ghost user account that needs to be resolved. In tidying these things it will also be important to address the cluttering of desktop icons. It takes significant RAM to display them.
There we’re also particular difficulties with rebuilding the directory of the 1TB Western Digital drive volume AppleBook. This may have been caused by TimeMachine passes as the disk is used both for string key business file on Applebook and a TimeMachine volume. I would like to introduce another FireWire drive — perhaps 2 TB. — to cover backing up both the HD and the external drive using Carbon Copy Cloner (CCC) to create incremental clones. This doubles the back up and provides fast and efficient disaster recovery. TimeMachine can then cover continuous back up and individual file restores, while CCC can be used for rapid restores of the complete systems.
[We will also need to look at using Dropbox to put key work in progress files and essential files in encrypted offsite space beyond the reach of either disasters such as theft or fire]
2. System choices for the Mac Mini and Powerbook.
Mac Mini to go to 10.7 to introduce iCloud syncing, but a downside of losing Rosetta to interpret PowerPC coded applications – MS Office 2008 and Creative Suite including Adobe Acrobat Pro.
Discussion of new software solutions for MS Office – Office 365 as a subscription including 20gb of cloud space on SkyDrive with synching across the iPad and iPhone. Also discussed Pixelmator as a good replacement for Photoshop.
OSX 10.5 Leopard on the Powerbook will give better performance than Tiger and also give access to TimeMachine. The upgrade will also be the opportunity to resolve storage and the ghost account issues.
3. Use of iCloud, Skydrive and Outlook for more efficient centralised working.
Moving the Mac Mini to 10.7 and installing Office 365 will involve exporting the current Entourage email database and importing it into Outlook in the new version of Office.
Setting up iCloud on the the Mac Mini in 10.7 will allow syncing between the desktop and the iOS devices. We’ll need to explore the best patterns for using Contacts and Calendars across the devices with options for both iCloud and Outlook / Skydrive solutions.
4. Purchasing strategies for the business over the next year.
There is an enthusiasm for buying an iMac to replace the Mac Mini and Dell screen. There is also a desire for a new Retina Macbook Pro and a new Retina iPad. However the route might be to take time to digest the benefits of both iCloud and Office 365/Skydrive synching across the Mac Mini and the iPad Mini.
As the synching beds down, it will be clearer whether or not a new iPad Retina combined with Office synching is solution enough on the road, in which case the iMac can be prioritised and a new Macbook Pro can be left until 2015.