How to rename “EFI Boot” to “Windows” on the Mac

This is an irritant for some people like me who use multiple drives and partitions. Since all Windows and/or Linux boot partitions show up as “efi boot” on the Mac startup, it is desirable to change the name on startup so we can easily figure out which partition is which.

For some, it is merely the aesthetic value, but, in either case, being able to change the EFI boot name is generally desirable.

In this video, we will see how to do this on the Mac for installers and then how to change the same once we are booted into Windows on the Mac.

Generally, since we would format the Windows partition to NTFS, we have to use a small workaround in Windows to change the boot name for the Mac.

In this video, we will see how to go about the name change…

Windows 10 on Mac – Without BootCamp limitations!

Once upon a time, the Apple BootCamp worked as expected for the most part. In recent times though, that is no longer correct as many might already know.

There are occasions when I need to use native Windows and I would like that to be on an external SSD to be used and re-installed as and when needed.

There are 2 main issues when trying to install Windows on a Mac if you do not have a Windows system around.

1. Keyboard/Mouse/Trackpad does not work
2. You need Windows to get a NTFS formatted drive

There is a lot of material on the Internet that seems to be more in the legacy domain now.

I will discuss how to create a bootable USB drive for Windows 10 on the Mac using simple tools that anyone can deal with. The bootable USB I create works fine on both my iMac and MacBook Pro since I get the keyboard working in both cases and that allows me to install the Apple BootCamp drivers and application without any external requirements.

Let us see how this can be done…

Download Windows 10 ISO from:
https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windows10ISO

Download UNetBootIn from:
https://unetbootin.github.io

Download Extramagic from:
http://extramagic.forbootcamp.org

Download the AutoUnattend.xml from: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1dxoQk3YAeWOqJYuRTtIHQU0_dsrywKTI/view?usp=sharing

Mac OS – How to create a USB installer and downgrade

Given the fact that there are applications that are yet to be updated to be compatible with MacOS Big Sur, quite a few people saw a need to downgrade back to their older MacOS versions.

I will discuss how to create an external USB bootable drive for multiple MacOS versions and how to use this drive including on systems which have a T2 chip on them.

The Apple support links are as follows:

https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT211683

https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT201372

The free archiver Keka can be found at:

https://www.keka.io/en

Let’s see how this works…

Mac OS – Empty the Trash/Bin Fast!

This is a little known feature on Mac OS which allows you to clear the trash extremely fast compared to the normal “Empty Trash/Bin”.

For example, if you have thousands of files left by some application, or, just want to rebuild files for any application and delete the existing ones, just emptying the trash can take quite some time.

A typical example of this, in my case, would be to delete the preview files in Lightroom or ON1 Photo RAW cache which can have thousands of files.

This is far more apparent if the data is on a HDD, external or internal, rather than a SSD.

One way around this is to use the command line and delete the files and folders using the rm command. Fortunately, the trash/bin in Mac OS has an equivalent which just deletes instead of displaying the file count and its status while emptying the trash/bin.

Let’s see how this works…

Apple releases new bugs in iOS 8.3, OS X 10.10.3 and iTunes 12.1.2 :)

Well…It has become routine now. New untested releases from Apple again. Anyway, we can safely assume that there will be new bugs and some old ones that will remain. The list of bugs “fixed” will continue to have some variations with every update besides “improving security, safety…” etc.

The fly...

Bugs can fly!

iOS 8.3 breaks touch id for some according to quite a few blogs on the net. So, you might want to gather more information on this one before updating iOS to see which devices are affected by this bug.

For me, OS X seems to have some display related issues where windows will not redraw on my iMac even though the application is running and visible.

The brain-dead Photos app found only 20 photos on my phone where there was actually a whole lot more. This was on a freshly created user account after upgrading to 10.10.3. Out of the 20 photos, it could not import 2 with a message saying there was some issue with the metadata. Well…It goes even further, only 2 photos out of the imported 18 were complete, the rest were incomplete images with half of the image missing. The scenario did not change after upgrading iOS to 8.3. From a usable iPhoto, we now have a bare-bones, brain-dead Photos app!

Given the somewhat longer list of bug fixes in all the released software, it shows what all bugs have been around for years and are included in every update as being “fixed”.

Although I have yet to figure out any improvements, I do see new bugs besides some of the older ones still hanging around. Still to use the new iTunes update…Let’s see what new bugs are in store there.

With the tasteless (bitter for some) Lollipop from Google and Windows all-over-the-place, Apple has no real need or urgency to improve or fix anything, excepting on paper.

BTW, the iPhone 5c is available for the same price as the iPhone 4s officially. Head over to Amazon India for the current pricing and availability. With some coupons or offers, it can be even cheaper and falls into the same price range as a mid-to-low range Android device.

Overall, I would say it’s okay to update since the updates do not seem to be any worse than the previous ones…So far!

Joke of the Year…Apple iJoke unleashed!

Apple, the iconic company has done it again! They released the biggest joke of the year already, but, not very many are aware of it. Maybe it’s subtle enough to be ignored in a casual read.

So, here it is…Apple announced a “Public” beta of not just OS X, but also of iOS now. It’s Apple hardware, Apple software and everything on it is Apple moderated by the Mac AppStore and iOS AppStore and now Apple needs to do public betas in order to get their software fixed and working.

While this would be perfectly understandable in Microsoft’s case or similar companies since the combinations in the PC world are practically endless, for Apple, this is the biggest joke of all time!

Command key on my iMac. Time to clean up.

Command key on my iMac. Time to clean up.

 

So…What could be the reason behind this joke? The only logical reason would seem to be that no one at Apple uses any Apple hardware or software anymore and relies on the more robust hardware and software from other vendors. A company that never let out any details about what it was upto, now announces products in advance and fails to deliver over extended time periods.

Personally, I had signed up and participated in the OS X beta and never got any acknowledgements of any of the bugs I submitted or their status on release. This is just another eyewash from a directionless company after Steve Jobs.

Looking at it another way would be like saying; “It’s our hardware and software and we need others to check it out since we cannot do it ourselves”. Other companies do it, so, we must too…

I am still using a spotted, bad LCD, on my iMac like, possibly, many others. A common issue that was well-known. It was replaced once during warranty and spotted all over again after 3 months again. The replaced screen did not even carry a 6 month warranty. While I know Apple replaced the LCD vendor, it does not help me. At a paid replacement cost of over 30k, my next monitor would be accompanied by a PC.

I hope Microsoft gets its act together with Windows soon, otherwise it would be a Linux only PC. My Android phone is almost as usable as my iPhone now, so, the change seems to be coming…

So, what prompted me to actually write this post? Well…It was triggered by this video on YouTube where I think the laughter might be a bit overdone, but, I could add more points to it 🙂

This has English sub-titles and is fun to watch!

You can say iWatch or Apple Watch now…!

Apple – Let the Pain Begin!

After yet another flurry of untested and buggy software releases in the form of iOS and Yosemite, Apple was no longer concerned about the less than 50% adoption rate of iOS 8 at yet another boring event with lame jokes. They appeared to ignore the fact that even the close to 50% adoption rate for iOS 8 was primarily driven by the new iPhones.

The entire ecosystem that made Apple what it was while Steve Jobs was around is steadily crumbling. Personally, I think Apple made too much money to be bothered about quality, user experience or the identity the company had under Jobs.

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VLC Playback Issues with WMV on Mac OS X?

I recently got some video files in the Windows WMV format and VLC on Mac OS X was not able to play these files. It’s not that VLC does not play any WMV format files, it just happens that the files I had, did not work.

Having tried Flip4Mac some time back and observed similar issues, I chose not to try it again, instead, look for some alternate solution.

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Wiper – Yet another private messaging & call app

We have yet another entry in the messaging arena on iOS and Android called Wiper.

Like most such apps, this is also an iPhone only app. Even though it claims compatibility with the iPad, but, is not a universal app. The name sounds very similar to a far better known app called Viber and some might get confused between the two names.

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iTunes U 2.0 with custom classroom support released

Apple released iTunes U 2.0 with support for creating and sharing courses a few hours ago. Although it is too early to figure out the actual impact and overall usage and adoption given the high price of Apple devices, it does look promising.

To create a course, you need to have an iPad and have to register with an Institute name and profile, which, can be edited later. I guess details will emerge as and when people start using it.

A brief description from the application is as follows:

  • The new iTunes U makes it simple for students participating in private courses to pose questions on the course or any post or assignment
  • Other students in the class can jump into the discussion and ask more questions or provide answers
  • Teachers and students can keep up with the conversation when they receive push notifications as the discussion progresses

Create courses on iPad

  • Teachers can now create and update their courses using the iTunes U app on their iPad—getting started is fast, simple, and completely free
  • Provide every student a course outline, write posts, distribute assignments, upload class materials, easily track participating students, and much more
  • Take advantage of the built in camera on iPad to easily capture photos or videos and upload them for course assignments
  • Create materials using Pages, Numbers, and Keynote—or other apps from the App Store—and add them to your course by using “Open in iTunes U” from within each app
  • Teachers affiliated with qualified institutions have the option to publish their courses to the iTunes U Catalog—making them available to everyone for free