Posts Tagged ‘Tools’

How to Backup Your Mac Data With Time Machine

Friday, October 2nd, 2009

Mac is a line of personal computers developed by Apple Inc. and the Time Machine is the state-of-the-art-automatic backup built into the Mac’s Operating System. It keeps a copy of any kind of file that has been saved on the Mac including photos, movies, music, documents and everything else. It enables one to ‘go back in time’ and recover anything that he/she has lost or needs, hence the name.

Installing the Time Machine to the Mac is pretty simple. On connecting an external drive, Mac asks the user whether the drive is meant to be for backup and on saying yes, everything else will be taken care of by the Time Machine. After installation, all the back up will be done automatically and the user won’t have to worry about this anymore.

During installation, the software copies the Mac’s entire contents to the backup drive. Without compressing anything, all files are copied as it is. After the initial backup, only periodic backups are done and that too only for files that have been modified since the previous backup. Time Machine also creates links to all the files that are unchanged so that you can see the entire contents of the Mac on any given day.

Like every other backup software, the Time Machine also copies every file on the Mac, but there is something that sets the Time Machine apart from all these other softwares. It not only keeps a spare copy of all the files but also remembers exactly how the Mac looked on a particular day.

By searching on the Time Machine browser for missing files, the user can find long-lost files which you might have lost ages ago, but still need. You can also find the most recent changes by specifying the precise date or you can even do a Spotlight search to locate exactly the file you are looking for. As per the user’s requirement, the Time Machine can restore the entire folder or just the required files. Even the entire computer can be restored using Time Machine, if need be.

By default, a backup of everything is saved by the software, but files can be excluded by going to preferences and changing the Options. Files that are to be skipped can be set here. The user can also delete files whose backup has already been made by selecting the files he/she wishes to delete and then by choosing ‘Delete from all backups’ from the action menu in the Folder toolbar, all unwanted backups are eliminated instantly.

Eventually the program is bound to run out of space, as no matter how large the backup drive is, it will one day be filled. Hence, the software will start deleting the files, oldest first, but before doing so it informs the user. Moreover, before deleting anything, the software copies files that might be required to completely restore the user’s disk for future backups.

For more hints, tips and articles visit Mac Tools.

Are Macs Really More Secure Than PCs?

Wednesday, September 16th, 2009

For years, Apple has claimed that Macs are unassailable to attack, while rebuking Windows as being filled with security holes. Now not only has a Trojan been able to infect Macs and create a botnet, but many famous researchers caution that the Mac’s Operating System is more vulnerable than both Windows or Linux.

There has been a lot of media hype recently about the detection of the world’s first Mac botnet. On downloading a pirated copy of iLife, Mac users found that their machines were corrupted by a Trojan which opens a port on the local connection hosts by acting as a back door.

While addressing the Trojan, Apple claimed that the chances of being infected by this virus is negligible. But the very fact of its existence, and a botnet run by it, proves that Apple’s declaration that Macs are impenetrable to attacks is simply false.

Hackers say that they find Macs less secure than their present Windows equivalent. They say the code quality, in terms of security, is superior in Windows. Apple has fallen behind as far as security is concerned in the last several years.  This is largely because the spotlight has been on Window’s OS but not as much on Mac’s.

The general perception that Macs are invulnerable to attacks is fast changing. On the contrary, more people these days assert that Macs are far easier to exploit than Windows. The steps taken by Windows to ensure that it is harder for an exploit to work are not followed by Mac. This makes hacking into Macs so much easier as one does not have to jump hoops and deal with all the anti-exploit measures that can be found in Windows.

The security aspect also has to do more with the operating system than with the target program. Firefox on Mac is very easy to hack into. The underlying OS does not have built-in anti-exploit patches. Firefox on Windows is another matter altogether, rated one of the most secure browsers across all platforms.

There is another simple explanation as to why Macs are easier to hack into than Windows.  Bugs that pop up on all platforms are mostly the same, but it is very difficult to write an application for Windows. Hence, it is equally difficult to write an exploit for Windows, making hacking Macs comparatively easier.

From the start, Mac has had a UNIX foundation. This is why several years ago Mac was more secure than Windows. But the latest kinds of Trojans can override all the UNIX protections and hence the edge that Mac has held over Windows has been nullified and Macs are now inherently less secure than the latest versions of Windows.

There is also the belief that Apple’s polished reputation has little to do with its hardware, but is all because of excellent marketing. It may be that the legend of the Mac’s superior security is more about marketing genius and less about actual facts.

So for those in the Mac community who are still under the impression that the Mac is invincible: Sorry to break it to you but that is a thing of the past.

You can find more great articles, resources and free downloads for the Mac at Macintosh Tools.

Macintosh Tools has the latest articles, resources, software and tools for your Mac.

Fix Mac Disk Errors

Sunday, June 21st, 2009

In this article we teach you how to fix MAC disk errors for the Apple Macbook using the operating system OS X10.4.x. If your MAC computer is no longer working as quickly, efficiently or effectively as it used to when you had just purchased it, chances are that there is some malfunctioning of the disks of the computer systems. Such problems are known as disk errors and need to be fixed as soon as possible to prevent further damage and to restore the computer to its optimal condition.

Customers of Apple using the Apple Macbook are provided with a disk known as the Apple Software Restore disk which is to be used for such times where an emergency arises and the disk needs to be cleaned of unwanted applications and kinks need to be smoothened out.

Getting started!

The first step is to place the disk into the disk drive and then choose the ‘restart’ option to begin loading the computer up again. Once the start up process begins again you will be alerted to it by the startup sound. After you hear this sound press the C key down and hold it so until the screen displays the Apple logo. The logo display is in tones of gray.

Once the computer has started up the disk will automatically begin to initiate the OS installation process. Be careful not to begin to reinstall the operating system yourself manually.

You might be presented with the option of choosing another language. To work with English, which is the default language, click on the Next tab.

What next?

A window with the option Utilities will pop up. Click on the window and then choose the Disk Utility button. This will start up the Disk Utility function which will pop up as a new window. Towards the left hand side of the window will be a list of the disks out of which you need to select the one which you wish to heal. For the present time being, you will select the option listing Macintosh HD. There will be a bar running horizontal near the upper end of the window with the option First Aid. It is imperative to select this option as well. At the lower end of the Disk Utility window, towards the right hand side, you will be a tab with the label Repair Disk. To start the repairing process click on this tab.

And lastly…..

This action will initiate a scan in which the system will go through the drive that you have chosen to repair and will check to see if there are any problems in the drive. If the drive is safe and free of problems a message stating the same will be displayed. If there are errors in the drive a window detailing the same will pop up. After reading through the list of problems detected by the scan you only need to click on Repair Disk and the computer will start to fix the problems within the drive on its own.

Disk Software

Another highly recommended option for the Mac is to use some type of disk management and backup software such as Disk Tools. Read the full review of Disk Tools here.

For more Mac articles, tools, resources and downloads visit Macintosh Tools


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