Tag - Maintenance
Today's Pointers column was inspired by a real-life incident in which an acquaintance asked me for help in picking out a new iPad. Knowing that they had a fourth-generation iPad -- not far removed from the iPad Air 2 that I have -- I asked why. "Doesn't work anymore," they grumbled resentfully. "Lots of crashes, some apps don't even launch now." I asked if it had ever been turned off. "Every night," they said. I said, "no, not put to sleep -- turned off." "You can do that?!" they exclaimed.
According to a brief notification sent to developers, Apple is planning to take iTunes Connect offline for approximately six hours starting at 6AM Pacific on Sunday, October 26. The portal is used by developers to submit, take down, update, adjust pricing and study analytics of apps submitted to the Mac and iOS App Stores. The modest maintenance downtime is unusual in light of Apple annual and longer downtime that usually happens in December.
The online store from Apple has been listed on the company's System Status page as down for planned maintenance from approximately midnight Wednesday (eastern time) to 4AM ET. The downtime occurred just after a three-hour partial iCloud.com outage in which users could access most services, but the web Calendar and Reminders applications were nonfunctional. Most iCloud disruptions are brief and only affect a small portion of users, but both of the recent downtimes affected all users.
Maintain, a Mac applications developer, has released version 7.0 Beta 1 of system utility Cocktail. Cocktail is a digital toolset with a variety of features that lets users repair and optimize their system. The application offers a combination of maintenance tools and interface 'tweaks'. Anticipating Apple's fall release of OS X Mavericks 10.9, the latest beta version of the software is intended for users running a developer preview. Cocktail for OS X 10.8 and earlier is available with a Single User License for $20.
Apple has posted on its iCloud status update page that it will have a brief period of planned maintenance to its free iCloud service between the hours of 10 p.m. and midnight Tuesday (Pacific time, 1-3 a.m. Wednesday Eastern time). The company says that only one-half of one percent of users should be affected by the outage, which will cause some users to be unable to retrieve email.
Although Apple's own Time Machine is a good and easy-to-use solution for doing backups of user data, there are tasks it cannot do -- such as create a bootable external drive -- which are sometimes vital for troubleshooting, boot drive maintenance or other kinds of data restoration. Tri-Edre has timed the introduction its latest version of Clone X 4, which is now compatible with both Lion and Snow Leopard, to the introduction of Lion -- allowing users an easy way to clone their existing Snow Leopard installs before upgrading.
Popular system-maintenance utility MainMenu has been updated to version 3, bringing with it a new overlay-style menu for quick task access from a configurable global hot key. The update also features customizable user-defined tasks, and a new "archive desktop" function to keep the desktop clean yet organize the files that tend to end up there. The program is now also available on the Mac App Store.
Zeobit's MacKeeper positions itself as an all-around utility package, offering not just routine Mac maintenance but scheduled backups, data encryption, "undelete" options, an app "slimmer," anti-virus and anti-theft features, secure deletion of files, a duplicate finder, an automatic app updater, a login item and default app manager and even professional-grade tech support. Is it a jack of all trades, master of none -- or the one utility package to rule them all? Our review gives the program a workout and reports the results.
Koingo Software has launched updates of two of its software titles, MacPilot 4 and Librarian Pro 2. Mac Pilot enables hidden features and abilities in the MAC OS, and can optimize and run maintenance routines as well. It runs a user interface over more arcane UNIX scripts, allowing everyday users access to features like disabling menu-bar translucency, erasing recently used files, disabling system animations and changing winnow resizing speeds.
Maintain has launched a new update to its maintenance utility, releasing Cocktail 4.6. The software runs maintenance scripts, such as Unix, with a user-friendly interface. It can run daily, weekly and monthly scripts, repair permissions, set journaling for disks and force empty the trash, among other features. Users can also clean cache files and clear Trojan horses.