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NVMUG March 2022 Meeting Report

March 19, 2022

Meeting Minutes for the Northern Vermont Macintosh User Group

Held via Zoom online

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


Issues with sound and pictures to start -
Several of the members had image and sound issues when they first logged on. A system restart took care of one and one sound problem was the headphones was low charge.

New Vehicle issues - 
We discussed what the shortage of computer chips means for new vehicles. Many vendors are sending out vehicles with chips that do not affect the running or safety of the vehicles. While many integrated chips are not in direct direct competition with those used in computers, but those being manufactured to be used in computers can take away from manufacturing vehicle components.

Online security - 
Jane asked about online security, after talking to a computer representative about security. They recommended Malwarebytes and she installed it. We discussed several suggested malware and anti-virus possibilities. Stephen uses Intego Virus Barrier and I have Sophos installed, because of using Windows related USB drives on my computer and Sophos recognizes viruses, malware, and some inconsistencies on on those drives, as well as macOS drives. There are many free and paid options.

Internet service, fiber, and cell service - 
We discussed the current service providers for internet available in the different areas the members reside. Spectrum and Comcast provide cable service (150+ Mbps), Consolidated provides DSL service (8 -10 Mbps), Satellite (Reported as 64 Mbps) and Fidium and Tilson (Fiber, reported 500+ Mbps by one user). Tilson is available in Danville and some of the rural areas of Saint Johnsbury. Fidium is currently only available in the Barton area. They all offer different plans for connection speeds and usage limits. The speeds are for downloading and some uploading speeds are capped by the provider.

To add, last month we discussed the cost of internet connections. I’d like to report that xFinity (Comcast) has a cheaper rate if you use their other services, called Triple Play (Phone, internet, and cable TV). The internet cost is $64 a month with the package and $102 for internet service only. I do not know if Spectrum offers the same cost saving if you use their other services.

External optical drives -
We again discussed these devices for the late Macintosh devices, that do not include them build it. Although there are many small USB 3.0 devices available. But if one is primarily using the drive for viewing movies or listening to audio Volumes, USB 2.0 is fast enough. As far as burning, the speed at which a device will burn and disc type (CD/DVD) are the limiting factors. Most burners will burn at a maximum of 24x (CDs) which can be handled easily by USB 2.0 devices. They burned at those speeds prior to the use of USB 3.0 or 3.1. The interested person decided on the device they wanted. I happen to own 2 Asus USB 3.0 units which I really like. If you have a cPort/Thunderbolt 4.0 equipped computer, you will need a cPort to USB 3.0 adapter/dongle. There are a few units with cPort connectors available and some include the cPort to USB adapters.

New Apple devices as announced -
We talked about the Apple devices recently announced at the Apple Event. It does not look like any members present at the meeting will be early adopters of those devices. We did discuss the advantages on all, but the new green color iPhone 13 Pro.

Jane had a question about disconnecting her new iPhone after completing a call, after obtaining a new iPhone SE. It was different from her old cell phone. The options are close the connection by pressing the red phone handset icon, wait for the other person to hang up, or close the phone application. 
The next NVMUG meeting will be a Zoom meeting on April 16, 2022 at 10:00 am, unless we find out otherwise. The date for the May meeting will be May 21, 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 May 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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