How to fix: “10.4.11 Broke my Mac!”

How to fix: “10.4.11 Broke my Mac!”

A lot of people have been complaining that the 10.4.11 Software update broke their Mac, especially those running bootcamp.

Users experienced problems such as Blue Screens when the login screen was expected, a screen that switched between a black and a blue one, or simply the mac whirly-thingy is sticking. A lot of people have ended up simply reinstalling the system.

A bit of Googling brought me to this post about 10.4.9 doing the same thing. The author claims it is because the system got interrupted while it was pre-binding after the install was done. I encountered the problem on several machines that had been forced to run software update via Apple Remote Desktop and all upgraded to 10.4.11. Nobody was actually using the machines, but it’s possible they were running processes while prebinding was happening.

So from terminal on each affected machine I ran: sudo /usr/bin/update_prebinding -root / -force -debug

And now each machine boots happily!

Leopard: Print Sharing to Windows

Leopard: Print Sharing to Windows

For those of us who run multiple different machines it can be a pain to share resources such as printers. Most of the how-to guides I’ve seen on the Internet tell how to share a Windows based printer to OS X. I’m going to show how to share an OS X based printer to Windows.

The first step is to make sure your printer works in OS X. If you’re looking for a new printer, try here for Tiger (OS X 10.4) or here for Leopard (OS X 10.5). Any printer on this list is going to be Windows compatible. There are a lot more printers then this that will work, but be sure to check the manufacturers web site for updated OS X drivers. On the Windows box make sure to download and install the Windows drivers too. They might fail, but it’s easier to have the driver preinstalled.

On the OSX Machine go to System Preferences then Sharing. Simply click on Printer Sharing and exit out of the screen.

In Windows go to Start -> Control Panel (or All Programs, then Ctonrol Panel.) Click on Printers and Faxes, then “Add a Printer”. Choose Next then “A Network Printer,” next again and make sure Browse for a Printer is checked. A list of computers with shared resources will come up. Double Click on the one that is your OSX box and hit next yet again. The OS X name may be something like MAC00123456, this is the EtherNet card’s unique Mac address. A list of available printers should come up, highlight the one you want to install and hit next again.

The next step is a bit complicated, when you see a message saying that the printer drive will install automatically and it could be a security risk, go ahead and say Yes to the message. The next message may says “The server for the printer does not have the correct printer driver installed.” Click Ok, as this is why the printer driver was already installed. If the printer driver isn’t on the list, then browse to the printer driver that you installed earlier. Hit OK, perhaps do a test page just to be safe, and enjoy printing!

How to: Clean Apple Mighty Mouse

How to: Clean Apple Mighty Mouse

I am a big fan of the AppleMighty Mouse. It feels right in my hand.

Unluckily the little ball attracts grime and stops working. There have been multiple posts on how to fix them.

The problem is just like any other mouse. Grease from fingers gets on the ball which attracts dust. The dust gets rolled into the mechanism clogging it up. Canned does not get this gunk out as it’s like glue. WD-40 does a bit but can damage parts inside the mouse, or the rubber of the ball itself. Plus it leaves a thin film that merely makes the problem worse. Taking the mouse completely apart tends to break them. Rubbing the mouse ball upside down against your hand merely gets out loose pieces.

The best, longest lasting method I’ve found is to use a wire twist tie. Push the mouse ball down and run one end of the wire tie along the groove. You’ll be able to physically see the gunk under the lip holding the ball in. Remove everything that you can physically see.

Step 2 is a variation on other fixes. Pour some rubbing alcohol on a lint free rag. Turn the mouse upside down and rub the ball with the rubbing alcohol. This will clean the rubber ball itself and help remove any smaller pieces of gunk that the wire tire removed. Keep doing this for longer then you think you’ll need.

Follow these steps and you should see a noticeable difference in how the mouse ball moves. It’ll be like getting a new Mighty Mouse, but cheaper.

For long term cleanliness wash your hands before using the mouse. This will help keep the build up to a minimum.