One of the hardest pills to swallow about computer use is the realisation that you may well have just lost some very important data. Be that anything from your contacts list to your wedding photo’s. Ok, we are all supposed to backup regularly – but there’s just sometimes when it’s not actually possible, and as luck would have it that’s generally when you suffer the freak incident which results in data loss.
Luckily for you, there are tools such as Disk Drill on the market!
Disk Drill has got to be one of the most fully featured data recovery applications I have used for OS X. Not only is it capable of recovering data from HFS, HFS+, FAT, NTFS and more. It also has the built in ability to help prevent data loss using it’s very own ‘Recovery Vault’.
Disk Drill is capable of scanning and recovering files from it’s vault in seconds.. Yes – that’s right … SECONDS! Making this the perfect utility for all heavy Mac users and novices alike.
But wait… Disk Drill isn’t only capable of recovery data from your built in Mac drive, it’s also capable of recovering data from any drive that’s still able to be mounted.
Disk Drill is currently Free as it’s still in ‘Beta’ so it’s a perfect time to test it out.
If you are like me, and have countless app’s littered all over your Mac – each one as important as the next one you will be keen to stay on the bleeding edge. Well you may be pleased to know there are several apps on the market to keep all your other apps up to date.
However, if you are just an average home mac user, paying for such facility’s is often out of the question. Luckily there’s also open source/free apps on the market. Amongst them all one stands out from the crowd, AppFresh from Metasquark really does have everything you can ask for.
The overall app stands a 1.6mb which is tiny considering it’s shear power.
AppFresh has some pretty impressive features:
- AppFresh OS Updates:
Seamlessly integrates with OS X’s native update checking, so not only will all of your app’s remain up to date, your OS will too.
- AppFresh RSS Feeds:
Supporting RSS feed based ‘Sparkle’ updates.
- AppFresh Microsoft AutoUpdate:
Capable of checking for and downloading Microsoft updates.
- Widgets, Prefpanes and Plugins:
Not only does AppFresh download application updates it can also download Widget, Prefpane and plugin updates.
AppFresh requires Mac OS X Tiger or later.
You can download AppFresh from Metaquark’s website, as of yet it’s not available through the Mac App store.
With the recent launch of the all new Apple Mac App Store, came the arrival of the official OS X Twitter client. Now, although there are countless twitter based clients available for OS X, the official client has entered the charts near the top in my opinion.
The client sports a very slick and basic interface, with the various twitter site features in a greyed out menu down the left hand side, and the main content down the right. This is a design which is certainly not common amongst other offerings in the field.
In an also unusual design is the ‘New tweet’ and new ‘DM’ windows, they are actually separate from the client and can be conveniently placed anywhere around your Mac’s screen. This along with the applications short cut keys can make tweeting whilst in the middle of things in other applications a breeze.
I am, however, slightly loathed to accept and install the application myself, as I prefer applications such as TweetDeck, with their ability to post direct into several sites at the same time. However, considering its their first attempt at a native OS X client – I think it’s a pretty good attempt.
You can download the all new Twitter client from the new Mac App Store.
One of the downsides of using a laptop as a main computer is it’s constant ‘want’ to power down/sleep to preserve battery. However, there are some times when it powering down is really unhelpful – during the middle of long processes such as file transfers or downloads are good examples.
Well luckily the boffins over at Lighthead software have come up with a solution. A tiny little menu bar app named ‘Caffeine‘, Caffeine has similar effects on your Mac as you would expect it would have on the hard working internet geek sipping coffee whilst searching for the web for future tech.
With a single click of the mouse Caffeine will prevent your Mac from going to sleep, the screen dimming or the screen saver kicking in.
However, there is a small caveat you should keep in mind whilst using Caffeine – Screen savers are there for a reason and ideally shouldn’t be left switched off for long periods of time. Static images on your screen can and will cause damage.
Now, as much as I love MobileMe and the sync services it provides, I just can’t bring myself to pay the massive renewal cost for an extra year as a member. The £59 is staying firmly seated in my pocket this time round! However, I am a little addicted to the services MobileMe provides, so I found myself having to track down alternatives for all of the services I am losing. Surprisingly enough, this is not as difficult a task as it actually sounds.
First things first, the email was a good send – it was (as fair as I know) the first to other ‘Push‘ email technology, basically saving having to check for mail every 15 minutes. However, since I signed up to MobileMe, the boffins over at Google have now enabled ‘Push‘ email too. So….Let’s compare:
|Service:||Mobile Me||Google Mail|
|£59 per year||100% Free|
|Storage Space:||20 GB||7 GB|
|Push Mail Support:||Yes||Yes|
|Mobile Device Support:||Yes||Yes|
So, there’s little difference between MobileMe’s email service, apart from the storage space…Now who’s going to need to keep more than 7GB?? If like me you download your mail to your laptop/pc anyway then that’s more than enough!
This brings me to the MobileMe’s contact features. Again, as part of signing up for your Gmail account for FREE you also get access to a contact solution, which is again capable of sync’ing with your mobile device using MobileSync. So that’s that sorted.
Next on the high list is the calendar offering from MobileMe. Again this is part of the free alternative Gmail account and I am yet to find a way that Google calendars doesn’t meet up to/beat MobileMe’s offering.
Then onto the picture storage service. Ok, you don’t get that as part of Gmail, but unless you are completely new to the whole internet world you should have at least heard of services such as flikr! Granted flikr doesn’t have a mobile client, but all that can be solved in the final stage of my investigation…
Cloud based storage is the final feature in the MobileMe package, the best replacement for this is by far, Dropbox. Dropbox has one of the most intelligent desktop clients I have ever seen. Along with a mobile client to boot, it certainly has to be the best in the running as a replacement. With Dropbox you get 2GB of storage for free, with the opportunity to obtain more space by inviting friends along. Alternatively, you could spend some of your £59 on upgrading your account and bagging yourself some more storage space.