Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Magical working of Tags in Mavericks

Magical working of Tags in Mavericks

Tags in Mavericks are a smarter option for managing the files and folders. Organising thousands of folders and files becomes an easy task with the help of such facility. Existing files can be chosen by clicking on the tag accordingly. Moreover, searching and sorting task will become uncomplicated and we would be able to navigate according to our convenience.

Generating Tag preferences

Using Tag preferences, we can select the different names, colors etc. of our choice. Just select Preferences option from Finder and press Tags button. User can change the order of tag by clicking and dragging the dot tag according to their preferences. Also one can rename the tag and give it a unique name by just clicking on it. There are some certain tags that appear in the File menu and Shortcut menus of the Finder. The user can simply drag the Favourite tag and replace it with the new tag of his own choice. Now comes the inactive tag, which are invisible tags. They can't be seen in the sidebar but we can definitely add them according to our convenience. For example, Hyphen indicate a new tag whereas checkmark denotes that the current tag is available in the sidebar. And the tags can still be used after unchecking on it but will not appear in the sidebar of Finder and dialog window.

Operating Tags

Tags in Mavericks present in different colours i.e. red, blue, pink etc. There are many options available for using the tag. So let us see the different scenarios of tagging the document, files or folders:

1) Using Right-click on Finder option:

Tags can be accessed from the file menu available in Finder bar. Seven colours can be seen by default by clicking on Finder menu. Just right click on the file that you want to tag and scroll down the mouse to choose from the colourful tags options. And if you want to delete the tag, just click on the existing tag and press delete key. In case you want to click on certain files together then just hold Command key and select various files. Then follow the same procedure as well.

2) Using tag from the File menu

You may also select the required tag colour from the window on which you are working directly. For doing so, one needs to go to the File menu in the same window in which you are working and then apply the tag from there.

3) Using iCloud shortcut to tag documents

Some applications such as Apple's TextEdit support iCloud. Once the iCloud set up is there, saving and managing the documents becomes easier. Now applying tags to the document while saving consumes time and effort. Now you could able to see the small triangle that appears just after the document's name in the window title bar. Click on that icon and apply the tag in the Tags field.

4) Using tag shortcut

When we have to manage large number of files, it become a tedious task to deal with it. So creating a shortcut in such a situation will make the task quite easier. Here we require the keyboard shortcut to perform this task. First launch System preferences to select the keyboard preference. After choosing, click on the shortcuts tab. A window will appear with the option App Shortcuts, just select it and then click the + sign button available near the bottom of the window. Now choose Finder in the application field, write tags in Menu title and write a keyboard shortcut of your choice. After filling the required field, click on Add and the task is done. Now whenever you select the file or folder in the Finder, just press the keyboard shortcut to perform the operation.

Therefore, above is the interesting usage of tags explained, which literate us the smarter handling of files and folders without any complications and difficulties.

Tuesday, 8 July 2014

How to speedup an old iMac?

Buying older Macs have been great subject of discussions over the web. There are plenty of online platforms which sell used Mac computers to people willing to buy. Among the best known sites that offer good deals are:
  • Amazon
  • eBay
  • Mac of all trades
  • The Mac Store
With such shopping sites, buying an old Mac is same as buying a new one. One puts a lot of research & fact-findings to seal the deal. However, it is quite frequent that used Macs may not perform up to expectations of the user. After buying such an old iMac, one may add RAM, SSD or HDD and other additional hardware to match the speed like a new one.

Find the reasons of slow iMac:

Check RAM size. Go to Apple Logo and click ‘About this Mac’. Further Click More Info<<Memory. The Apple will let you know the RAM it has. If the old iMac had 2GB of RAM, then it is advisable to upgrade it to at-least 4GB for quick execution of the OS X tasks. iMacs love RAMs so they won’t mind even 8GB or more, however, a RAM update has to be aligned with the system specification of the iMac. Sometimes, an overdose of RAM may not be digested by a system.

Format Hard Drive: When you have received your iMac through reseller, it is advisable to format the drive & reinstall an OS X. You might go for latest OS X Mavericks after confirming that iMac model will be compatible with OS X 10.9. Check here for system compatibility with OS X Mavericks http://www.apple.com/osx/how-to-upgrade/

Activity Monitor: If might be that you still be crawling on the iMac even after RAM & Hard drive updates. Under this situation, it is good to closely watch Activity Monitor so that one can know the memory consumption by several apps & programs. If you find any default app using too much of RAM, then one can take preventive measure against it.

Disk Repair: Through Disk Utility, Verify/Repair Disk permissions. Older hard drive is more prone to logical corruption. Even a minor corruption on the disk may cause the entire OS X to crawl. Moreover, it will also fail the efforts of speeding up the iMac through various other resources like RAM etc.

So, above factors are simple to implement and they will definitely resolve the slow speedup of iMac. However, under some conditions, one may has to opt for advance level of optimization.

Hard drive fragmentation: A purchased iMac as old as 2-5 years may have developed colony of fragments on its drive. It is more common when you have no idea about the history of the purchased old iMac. It might have been that, iMac was used to run heavy software including Video-Editing, Animations etc. The development of fragmentation is most common when OS X runs large applications. OS X itself handles fragmentation on a file which is less than or equals to 20MB. When user works on bulky software, the files created on the drive are more than the mentioned size (20GB) and thus drive develops fragmentation. With more & more fragments adding to the drive, the OS X will begin to crawl in order to access files from various drive locations. 

Tips to remove fragmentation:
  • Arrange a larger external drive and format it with HFS partition using Disk Utility. Now transfer all data to this external hard drive. Re-format the Mac hard drive and install fresh OS X on it. Now copy backs all the files & folders from the external hard drive to OS X drive. This will help reduce no. of fragments and thus improves the speed of OS X.
  • Use a third-party defrag Mac app to remove fragmentations. To find best defrag Mac App click here.
  • Once fragments are taken care of, user will experience a boost in the performance of the OS X, since the OS X is accessing file information through contiguous memory locations.
Failing hard drive:

When the drive is not fragmented but still acts wei
rdly slow, then it is recommended to cross check the stability of the drive.
  • Repair the hard drive using a professional Mac volume optimizer. The disk utility may not be able to repair all corruption on the disk. To find a dedicated disk repair Mac software click here.
  • Replace the hard drive with a new one. This also proves to work. User must find out an appropriate replacement for their iMac. Drive Replacement will cause an immediate impact on the speed & performance of the old iMac.

Secure Wipe Mac hard drive using easy tips

Introduction of wiping data:

Wiping data from the hard disk refers to the context of overwriting the data with zeros or random characters thus rendering it illegible to read. According to the dictionary knowledge wiping is the synonym of deleting but actually deleting the data means removing the data from the file listing and not from the computer. So wiping is a technique, which uses certain algorithms to permanently erase, the hard drive data from the computer, which cannot be recovered later.

Why wipe data from Mac hard drive:

Before handing the used hard drive to another person or giving away your Mac, it is very important to delete the confidential and personal files so that nobody is able to retrieve the data afterwards. Formatting the disk will not accomplish the task of deleting the actual data from the Mac computer or hard drive. Same with using ‘emptying trash’ command, which only removes the data from the OS X but doesn’t wipe it from its original location. Data shredding is needed for the security transaction of the hard drive to any other stranger.

Benefits of wiping data from Mac disk:

=> Permanently erase the Hard drive data.
=> Completely erase all system entries, log files and all sensitive information created by the OS.
=> Wiping will lead to ensure free spaces.
=> Data is securely wiped and finally didn't leave any traces.

Wipe Using OS X Secure Wipe Mac:

Eradicating credit card information, chats, Banking passwords, financial information, personal files is not enough with the action of removing the data from trash simply. Making the confidential information inaccessible in Mac computers require the certain steps to follow:

'Secure Empty Trash' feature: First of all there should be one file or folder in the trash to make the option of 'Secure Empty Trash' available. Then just press-hold the Command button on trash icon present on the dock to ensure the visibility of the option. Right click on the required option will overwrite the data ultimately resulting in unreadable files or folders. Also another way to access this option is from the Finder menu. This is a knowledgeable practice to securely erase the files & folders residing in trash.

To secure wipe Mac partition:

=> Launch Disk Utility and then select the hard drive that you want to erase.
=> Clicking on the erase tab will ask to choose one of the security options button. => The four security options are:
  1. Nothing
  2. Zero out data
  3. 3-Pass Erase
  4. 7-Pass Erase.

First option is not to erase any data. Zero out data will overwrite the data once. Since the more overwrite is there, the maximum data security is maintained. So 3-Pass will take three times longer to overwrite the data whereas 7-Pass erase will take seven times longer to do this task effectively. The criteria of choosing the desired level depend on the data.

Wipe Mac Startup Disk using wiping software:

Here comes the one of the efficient and tested software Stellar Wipe Mac which uses powerful algorithms to permanently erase the data. This software has the tendency to wipe the entire hard drive in a single go. With this outstanding utility, it not only wipes away the system entries, log files but erase unwanted system traces also which eat up drive space. It can wipe multiple drives simultaneously and can also schedule the process as well. Generally this software helps to delete browsing information, instant messaging information, hard drive data or any other confidential data permanently. This powerful software ensures guaranteed operations with the proven results. So steps to wipe Mac startup disk are:
  1. Create a bootable DVD with the software.
  2. Restart Mac and press OPTION key to load boot menu. Select Boot DVD.
  3. Select main HDD and choose a wiping algorithm to secure erase Mac startup disk.

Always choose the safer side and security in case of data because data is the valuable asset to perform a major operation. And with this, while selling away the Mac computer or hard drive or iPhone or tablets, ensure the data is wiped completely with the zero possibility of recovery chances.

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Hybrid Shutdown Feature in Windows 8 - For Better or Worse

To overcome from slow startup problems in Windows OS, hybrid shutdown is introduced with Windows 8 (also comes with Windows 8.1) along with various other crucial features like OneDrive Integration, bit locker, tiles interface etc. Hybrid shutdown is slightly different from hibernation and sleep mode we use previously in Windows XP or Windows 7, so don’t get confused with it.

What happens when you perform hybrid shutdown?
Whenever the user shutdown their Windows 8 PC, hybrid shutdown will immediately close user session and save the current state of kernel including drivers and running programs into a single hiberfil.sys file and then hardware session to ultimately shut down the PC. On the next restart, hardware will initialize so fast like never before (due to UEFI system in Windows 8 instead of BIOS system) and the operating system reads the content of the hiberfil.sys file to read kernel and user session and then restore the system exactly in the state you’ve left while hibernation. The whole process occurs so fast, as less as 8 seconds and makes the system ready to let user perform their desired operation. 

What are the benefits?
Hybrid shutdown will provide seamless opportunities for users who always dreamed for super-fast computers. It can provide extremely fast shut down and start for PCs with average configuration as well as frequent loading of heavy applications that nearly took almost double time on its predecessor like XP or Windows 7.

If you are using SSD (solid state drive), can make your PC even faster.

Dark side of the hybrid shutdown
Clearly, everything has its own dark side and so as hybrid shutdown which sometime leaves users in deep trouble. Windows 8 PC may give freezing or random restarts while using it, just because of hybrid shutdown feature. Resuming from hibernation sometime throws multiple difficulties and as results, the system might stuck or completely freezes. This is because the size of the hiberfil.sys file which may contain huge information about multiple applications running or have large amount of data stored when the system went into hibernation. 

Any ongoing file that changes haven’t been saved fully or somehow you forget to save, might lost permanently. Moreover, such problems sometime leads to permanent system inaccessibility and prevent user to access the stored data. Such situations can be addressed well only by using powerful Windows file recovery software that scans the problem media using powerful algorithm and make them ready for recovery as soon as the scanning process completed.

Each time you choose to turn off the computer, Windows 8 initializes hybrid shutdown by default unless and until you haven’t chosen to manually disable it. So if you are facing some difficulties with your Windows 8 or Windows 8.1 PC such as freezing or automatic restarts, consider disabling hybrid shutdown feature and see if the system may start behaving as it normally does.

Below is the detailed steps on how you can disable hybrid shutdown:

  1. On your Windows 8 or 8.1 computer, press ‘Window’ button + ‘Q’ to open the search text box. Type Power and hit enter. You’ll get multiple search items related to power options.
  2. Click on Settings, located below the App option and then click on Change What the Power Buttons do option from the right side of the screen. In case, you’re using Windows 8.1 computer, this option will be automatically listed at the bottom, just below the search text box. See the image below for reference.

  3. Power options window will open. Scroll down at the bottom and locate the option Turn on fast startup (recommended) under Shutdown settings option. 

    Please note that if the option to deselect Turn on fast startup (recommend) isn’t clickable or has been grayed out, then click on Change settings that are currently unavailable option located under Power button setting button.
  4. Uncheck or deselect the option and press save changes.
  5. Restart your computer.

Most probably, it’ll fix all your freezing or automatic shutdown problems in Windows 8 or Windows 8.1 computer.

What if you want occasional complete (real) shutdown as you do in previous version of Windows?
In case you just want complete system shutdown and restart your system with everything fresh including the brand new kernel session, simply click on restart. It’ll turn off all the user, kernel and hardware session before restart and helps you in case you are facing some problems every time you choose to fast shutdown your computer.

Alternatively, there is another way to achieve a complete shutdown and a real cold boot the next time your start your computer by performing the command mentioned below:

Shutdown /s /t 0

Hope this article seems helpful and become handy just in case if you’re wondering for solutions of Windows 8 freezing or automatic restart problem which occurs because of hybrid shutdown.

Tuesday, 24 June 2014

RAID: Levels, functions & RAID in OS X Mac


RAID expands to Reduntant Array of Independent Disk, is a data storage technology which coalesces the disk drives into a single logical unit for the purpose of enhancing the performance and data redundancy. Basically RAID is the policy to spread the data across multiple disk in a reliable manner. This technology comprises of certain levels which makes the task of data storage easier.

RAID levels:
The popular levels of RAID are RAID 0, RAID 1,  RAID 5, RAID 6 and RAID 10. RAID 0 is mainly used for striping, that is to read and write the data pararellely across the disk to achieve performance.

The main function of another level RAID 1 is mirroring, which helps to maintain the mirrored sets of the hard drive. In this case, if the hard drive get fails or data is deleted accidently then there is another mirrored drive which consist of the identical data. Although this feature require double storage capacity but it ensures high data protection and performance.

Now comes the RAID 4 which has the splendid characteristic of parity, which is used to detect the fault tolerence. It is used to recover the lost data in case of disk drive failure. RAID 4 consist of 3 hard disk drives in which 1 is for checking parity. One of the most prominent feature of RAID 4 is hot sparing that is it has the power of replacing the failed disk automatically. Inspite of all these features this level is not so commonly used.

The reason is RAID 6 which has 2 parity disk means it has the capacity to replace 2 hard drive failures automatically. Most widely used out of all levels of RAID is RAID 10. However, in this level, order of the required task is maintained. First mirroring is done and then the data is striped across the disk drives. Its is commonly called as the “stripes of mirrors” the fruitful combination of RAID 0 and RAID 1.
RAID in OS X Disk Utility:

Most commonly OS support RAID technology software for managing the volumes such as Mac OS X Disk Utility. Data is distributed across multiple disk either by hardware RAID or software RAID. Software RAID is implemented as a single virtual device which consist of a standard drive controller chip inbuilt into it with the drivers in it as well. Now if we compare this with the hardware RAID then this software RAID involves less number of CPU cycles and power to run.

RAID in Disk Utility is a built in software which support few levels of RAID. Mac OS X disk utility supports RAID 0, RAID 1 and RAID 10. Software RAID is reliable and flexible for the overall functioning of the system as it maintains the storage effectively without any loss of data. The two efficient feature of the Mac OS X Disk Utility is striping and mirroring. Striping stores the files in segments across the disk which is beneficial in when we have to deal with large sets of data whereas mirroring helps to duplicate the content of the data on to the another drive. After clicking on the RAID option in Disk Utility, just choose RAID type and format according to the data requirement and create sets. These sets will helps us to manage the data enthusiastically.

So, the above content describes the introduction and overall view of RAID to utilize the best service in an efficient manner.  

Thursday, 19 June 2014

Windows, Mac & Linux recovery software bundled at heavy discount

Stellar Data Recovery have been developing data recovery software for Single & Technician users from a long time. This time, Stellar Phoenix has decided to bundle 3 powerful data recovery applications & release them with Technician licenses. This Data Recovery toolkit will include below dedicated OS recovery software from Stellar Phoenix.


The bundle will facilitate hassle free recovery of lost, formatted & deleted files from hard drive or multiple drives, lost & deleted partitions & through various file systems. Let’s walk though the mighty features of Data Recovery toolkit bundle for each OS.

1) Stellar Phoenix Windows data recovery:

Stellar Phoenix for Windows data recovery is well-suited application to recover data from any NTFS formatted hard drive. It supports recovery on Windows XP, 7, 8 and 8.1. S.P.W.D.R. flawlessly recovers data from an unmounted hard drive, bad-sectors and even scans & recovers a deleted partition. The support for RAID recovery is also provided in this software which would help user get back data from RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 5, & upto RAID 6. Presence of ‘RAW Recovery’ feature for corrupted hard drives & ‘Remote data recovery’ makes the software more preferable for advanced/expert users.

To recover data from inaccessible Window computers, a bootable CD/DVD is also provided.

2) Stellar Phoenix Mac data recovery & (3) Stellar Phoenix Linux Data recovery

OS X hard drive recovery & Linux recovery is supported by individual software that is bundled within the Data Recovery toolkit. Both the software will regain lost, deleted or formatted data on their respective operating systems. Formatted or deleted partition recovery is well supported through both the software. For OS X Mac, the file formats supported are the HFS, HFS+, FAT32, FAT16, and FAT12 volumes. For the Linux OS, Ext1, Ext2, Ext3, Ext4 are supported for data recovery.

Cost of Bundle:

Stellar Data Recovery has always been offering cost effective software that can be easily purchased & used by all. For this Data Recovery Toolkit, user has to pay $500 to acquire lifetime technician license of all 3 software. Once a user purchases the bundle, he/she will receive 24X5 dedicated technical support to rectify any technical issue(s).

Buy this bundle through secure payment gateway – Buy Now