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NVMUG April 2022 Meeting Report

April 16, 2022

Meeting Minutes for the Northern Vermont Macintosh User Group

Held via Zoom online

Present: Jane Fuller, Midge Lubot, Stephen Farber, Bruce Shields, and Geof Gonter


Holidays -
We opened with a discussion about the Christian and Jewish holidays we were having. The discussion included Vermont made matzo.

Apple World User Group University - 
Geof reported on the Apple World User Group University meeting he attended in March. The meeting covered meeting newsletters and magazines that some user groups publish. The Australian User Group (AUG) covered their rather large publication that is provided online and in print form. Users getting the print form pay a higher membership fee. Several others reported, some including a Google document for all members to peruse on their devices. At least two mentioned that they were expanding their publications.

Removing the media from an internal optical drive - 
For those still using a Mac with an internal optical drive and have an issue with ejecting media, holding down on the bottom of the touch pad on a restart or cold start up usually addresses the issue. If that doesn’t address the issue, try using the Disk Utility application to eject. DVDs seem to be a bigger issue than CDs, because of their additional thickness. If it sounds like it is trying to eject, but stops at the brush like opening, try sliding an index card on the top of the media when trying to eject. The same tricks should work on the Apple External disc drive. On after market optical drives, there is a pinhole next to the eject button that you can insert a paper clip in and manually eject the media.

Resetting the SMC - 
Traditionally on an Intel Mac, one way to deal with many problems that arise with fans or power supplies is to reset the System Management Controller (SMC). This is achieved by switching off your Mac then restarting it, or using certain key combinations, all of which are explained in how to reset the SMC on a Mac.

M1 Macs don’t have a System Management Controller, so this route obviously no longer exists. All functions that were previously handled by the SMC are now incorporated into the M1 processor. You may reset it in DFU mode, which requires a second Mac with Apple’s Configurator 2 installed on the second Mac and a special cable (one that carries both data and power, cPort to cPort or cPort to USB A). A thunderbolt cable can not be used.) Apple’s instruction are at https://support.apple.com/guide/apple-configurator-mac/revive-or-restore-a-mac-with-apple-silicon-apdd5f3c75ad/mac and the operation is called “Reviving the Mac”, which restores the firmware.) It is not the easy process it has been in the past. Some report that unplugging the computer for 30 plus seconds, has corrected their fan/power issues.

External optical drives -
Jane had an external hard drive that was not functioning properly and she didn’t know if it needed replacement or repair. So she was walked through the process of checking the drive condition.
1. Does the indicator light come on when plugged in?
2. Does the computer make a noise or vibrate when plugged into the computer?
3. Does the drive show up in the finder window? (Make sure you have the box in front of the “External Drives” in the Finder preference window in the General tab or the in Locations in the Sidebar tab if you are looking for it in the finder window.)
4. Is it visible in the Disk Utility window? If it is there, but shows no data, the data may be retrievable with special software or if there is nothing you need on the drive, you can try to format it to see if data can be written to it. If it can be reformatted and the drive has been used for a long period of time, you may not want to depend on it for storing essential data, such as using it for Time Machine backups. External 2.5” drives are pretty inexpensive compared to losing data.

Information Request -
I am interested in what operating system users are running, so we know if we can use FaceTime for the meetings, instead of Zoom. You must be running 10.14.3 or higher (Mojave, Catalina, Big Sur, or Monterey) to use multi users in FaceTime for up to 32 people, more people than we have attending the meetings.

The next NVMUG meeting will be a Zoom meeting on May 21, 2022 at 10:00 am, unless we find out otherwise. The date for the June meeting will be June 18, 2022.

If you wish to attend, please send me an email by 9:30 am, by that date, so I can send you an email invitation to the meeting. The meetings will continue to be online meetings instead of the meeting room at the Northeastern Regional Hospital in Saint Johnsbury, Vermont. Right now that looks like it will not be before June 1, 2022, when we might be able access that location.

On Facebook? Visit us at https://www.facebook.com/groups/477957755742285/.

Geof Gonter



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