I was contacted for help in relation to a MacBook that had been dropped and, as a result, had a screen that wasn't working.
When I asked whether there was a backup for the MacBook, the owner of the Mac thought that iCloud was backing up the Mac - which was definitely not the case.
Here's the truth about iCloud and Mac backups.
When did you last do a backup of your Mac?
If your answers is 'what is a backup?', 'never' or 'ages ago', you are putting yourself at serious risk of losing irreplaceable photos and files if something happens to that Mac. An iTandCoffee client I visited this week can attest to to the stress that can result from a damaged computer.
My very own iMac suffered a major problem just recently, and had to be restored from a backup. It can happen to any of us.
Are you someone who backs up your iPhone or iPad to your Mac using iTunes?
When you upgrade to macOS Catalina (have you done this yet?), you will find that you no longer have an iTunes app - replaced by the Music, TV and Podcasts apps.
Here is a recent article about this: iTunes isn't dead, it's just being replaced. Here's what it means for your devices, music and movies
This may leave you wondering how you can undertake any future backup and sync'ing of your i-Device with your Mac computer! Has the capability been removed completely?
The good news is that the backup and sync capability has not been removed - it has just been moved. Read on to find out where it can be found.
The topic of backups came up several times over the last couple of weeks, I have decided to re-publish the below article on this topic from November 2017, still relevant on today's iOS devices.
So many people that we see at iTandCoffee have never considered doing a backup of their iPad or iPhone. This puts them at great risk of losing their photos, messages, and lots of other information stored on their device.
While using iCloud can ensure that certain information is always protected from device loss or damage (through sync'ing of key information like Contacts, Calendar, Notes, Reminders, etc), not everything can be restored if a disaster strikes. These disasters could come in the form of a dropped or stolen device, a malfunctioning device, a forgotten passcode, or a failed update or upgrade.
It is very easy to back up your iPad or iPhone - in fact, it can happen 'magically' each day, without you even thinking about it. This is done using a feature of iCloud called 'iCloud Backup'.
This one is for iTandCoffee Club member William B, who is keen to learn about how to do a Windows backup.
If you are not doing a regular backup of your Windows computer, you may be putting your valuable data and precious photos at risk.
A backup offers an insurance policy for if something goes wrong - if your device is lost or stolen, or if you are the victim of a malicious attack on your computer.
If you have purchased one of the newer model MacBook Pro's - the entry level model that has the two USB-C ports, and no touch-bar - you should be aware of a potential problem that could result in the loss of your Mac's data.
Those of you who watch this blog or read the iTandCoffee Newsletter will know that there have been several articles recently about the upgrade to iOS, iOS 11.
What hasn't had much coverage is the upgrade of Macs to the latest version of the Mac operating system, MacOS Sierra (10.13)
I must say that I held off on downloading and installing MacOS High Sierra for several weeks, because I am so reliant on my Mac for my work. I wanted to wait for the early 'glitches' to be ironed out.
I finally installed High Sierra a couple of weeks ago, and can report that I have not had any issues so far with it.
For most people who install High Sierra, the changes will be barely noticeable. A few areas where you may notice differences are
Here's an article from Macworld that provides more detail about what High Sierra delivers.
On Wednesday this week, Apple released the awaited update to fix the recently reported KRACK Wi-Fi security flaw (see New Wi-Fi flaw leaves nearly every internet-connected device vulnerable).
Here is the Macworld article with details of the content of MacOS 10.13.1.
Is it time to upgrade to High Sierra?
For anyone who has a Mac that is capable of being updated to MacOS High Sierra, it is a good idea to install this latest upgrade, especially so that you 'plug' the major Wi-Fi security flaw.
Of course, this upgrade is only available for certain Macs - here's the list:
How to upgrade to MacOS High Sierra
As always, make sure you do a backup of your Mac - and that the backup has completed successfully - before you install any upgrade or update.
If you are not sure how to do this, we have a separate article that covers this topic.
Once you have a valid backup, visit the Mac App Store App to find the High Sierra download option.
In the past, the latest upgrade has shown up in the Updates area of the Mac App Store. This time, you will find the High Sierra download option in the Featured area. Or you can use the Search bar at top right to search for it. (I only realised it had moved to Featured after I had already used the Search to download it.)
Do you need help with the upgrade or backup?
As always, iTandCoffee can assist you with the processes of backing up and upgrading your Mac.
Just call 1300 885 420 or email us at email@example.com to book an appointment.
If you are an iTandCoffee Member with Plus, Premium or Online membership, why not arrange a free support call or drop-in appointment to get help with your backup or update?
Your memberships entitles you to FREE support - Plus and Online members get 3 support calls or drop-in appointments (of up to 15 minutes) per subscription year, and Premium members get 10!
All* Club members are welcome to come along to our next Free Friday on November 17th at 12pm and bring along your questions about upgrades, backups or anything else!
*Limits apply to these free sessions, depending on your level of membership. We'll let you know if you have exceeded this limit.
Special Offer for November 2017
Drop your Mac to us, and we will back up and upgrade your Mac for the fixed cost of
If you are Plus, Online and Premium member of the iTandCoffee Club, you will pay only $20 (by using one of your 'free support' entitlements).
Become a Plus or Premium Member before November 30th to go in the draw to win a NEW iPad - and to take advantage of great offers like this.
**Cost shown assumes that an external hard drive is provided by the owner of the Mac for the backup. Seagate external hard drive available for purchase at iTandCoffee for the additional cost of $89. Cost only covers backup and upgrade activities - any consultation or support will be charged at standard applicable rate for a private appointment.
Call 1300 885 420 to book in your Mac, or for more information
(If your call cannot be taken at the time, please leave a message with your details and we will return your call).
Just this week, iTandCoffee presented at a Tourism conference in the Yarra Valley, Victoria. During the presentation, we raised the question with delegates "How safe are your files and photos".
Are you backing up your precious files, especially those photos?
Please don't wait until a major disaster to think about protecting your 'digital life'! Make sure you are backing up to somewhere - and do it now!
In the past week, Google has released an exciting new tool that is worthy of consideration when looking at whether to backup to a physical device, or to a 'cloud' service (or both).
This new product allows you to choose to back up some or all of your computer's files and folders to your Google 'cloud'.
The great thing about this new service is that you don't need to choose to put your folders and files in a particular area on your computer for the backup to work.
You can leave them exactly where the are, and just 'tell' the Backup and Sync Tool which folders should be backed up.
Here is an article that describes this new tool.
I'll be looking into this one further over the next few weeks, to see if I add another layer of 'protection' for parts of our business and personal digital life.
Related Handy Hints and Articles
Handy Hints (for iTandCoffee Club members)
What's on at iTandCoffee ?
Join us for a short, fun 'topic of the day' classes known as PTT sessions (Personal Training for your Technology fitness!) - these are run on a regular basis. Or join any of our other classes shown below to learn so much about your technology.
If you have questions, why not join our The iTandCoffee Club to attend fun and informative 'user group' meetings.
All classes are run as online classes (using Zoom) which means you can attend from anywhere.
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