El Capitan Is Here!: Heres What To Do To Prepare Your Mac

October 2, 2015 / no comments

So finally, Mac OS X 10.11 El Capitan is about to become available. Installing a new OS is perhaps the most intense thing you can do to your beloved mac and it should be done with care and following a few basic rules.

First of all BACKUP!

Make sure you have a sound backup via time machine and I would even go further and make a manual backup of your most important files to an external hard drive (i.e photo library, documents etc).

Space, space and more space.

Secondly, Make sure you have enough space on your hard drive. Typically you should alway be running Mac with at least 10-15% of your hard drive empty. This allows the Mac to utilise that space to aid keeping speed up. El Capitan needs roughly 15-20gb of free space to install.

Maintenance is Key!

Lastly, make sure your Mac is in tip-top condition before embarking on your upgrade adventures. This means clearing the decks of old files, emptying trashes and generally making sure the wild cat is purring before you give it a bath.

The way that we keep on top of maintenance of Macs for our own and for our clients is to use CleanMyMac by a company called MacPaw. This piece of inexpensive software is a marvel indeed. It allows you to scan your Mac for System Junk (Stuff thats left over when you install new software), Empty large caches of data, old iOS updates (which can be huge), unnecessary languages, these take up quite a lot of space. CleanMyMac also has a maintenance mode that will scan the Mac and go through all the protocols to make sure that the mac is functioning exactly as it should.

There are a lot of bogus Mac maintenance apps out there ( lets not even mention the keeper that shall not be named mac) but this one really does find huge amounts of lost space and keeps everything running smoothly. It even monitors your memory usage and allows you to easily check on attached drives via the menu bar.

If you are going to install El Capitan we would highly suggest you investing in CleanMyMac to make sure you start off in the best possible scenario for the massive brain transplant that is a Mac OS update!


Happy Mountaineering!


Click Here to Visit CleanMyMac

Adobe Creative Cloud – Not for everyone!

August 31, 2013 / no comments

So Adobe have finally switched to a subscription model. There is nothing wrong with this inherently and the positive side of this method of software delivery is already apparent, more regular updates and a much smoother transition between versions. The one sticking point, however, is the price. Its simply too expensive for most to afford, add on top the ridiculous premium Adobe have added on top for users in the UK ($49.99 per month in the USA  Vs. £46.88 per month for us in the Uk – Not exactly a fair exchange rate!!) and it becomes untenable for many, especially if only needing three or four of the applications.


So thankfully, other software developers have caught up and some would say even begun to exceed the skills and knowhow of Adobe. MacAppStorm provided a list of excellent alternatives to the big apps that Adobe hawk under the Creative Cloud banner.


[button link=”http://mac.appstorm.net/roundups/graphics-roundups/the-best-alternative-apps-to-everything-in-adobe-creative-cloud/” size=”large” newtab=”on”]Visit Mac App Storm[/button]

Xmind – Mind Mapping Software, now FREE!

November 16, 2008 / no comments



XMind is a piece of software that helps those of us who need to visualise our thoughts in order to stay organised. Having recently gone open source, XMind is now completely FREE!.


Its not the prettiest mind map software going (think omnigraffle etc) but for free it certainly is amazing value!


No, this one is definitely worth a look and has many powerful features.




Appfresh – The updater for everything else…

November 4, 2008 / no comments




Appfresh is one of those applications that you don’t know you need until you have given it a spin. Mac OSX has a wonderful software update feature built in but this will only update official Mac software. Appfresh is able to search for and download updates for ALL of the software on your machine. An added nice touch is the ability to link your apps with IUSETHIS a great website for sharing which software you use and why and seeing other peoples software habits.



Blurb Books – Publisher Quality Printed Books – Budget Prices!…

October 24, 2008 / no comments

Blurb books is a great online service for making photo and text or simply text books that are incredibly good quality and incredibly cheap, with a page count up to 400 pages! Impressively it comes with its own software which is, admittedly, a trifle slow at times but I will forgive it for being new!


You can even allow friends and family to order them from the website or even sell for profit through the websites marketplace!


I have ordered my first one and cant wait to see how it turns out.




Extra Word Services for Mac….Tools for writers

October 24, 2008 / no comments

Have you ever needed to re-order sentences in Word or Pages alphabetically or numerically? Ever typed a whole paragraph without realising you had caps lock on and want to change it all back to lowercase? Well its not possible to do either of these and many other wordy things without Devon Technologies wonderful WordService plugin (completely free).


Once installed it adds many new services into the Mac’s global Services menu (that oft forgotten and lonely place on many a mac!).