to commonly asked questions.

Safari functioning differently after update

When I click on Safari,top left begins with start page and bookmarks folder is listed below. This is different.Yes, we have time machine. Update was incremental. We have Catalina 10.15.7.All bookmarks work except financial ones. Can I call you or schedule a time to talk?

This may be better solved if I could see your screen. Happy to assist via zoom remotely if you’d like. You can schedule using the link below. Having a hard time visualizing your problem. You could also just send a screen shot of the issue by holding down command_shift+4 then dragging over the area you’d like me to see. That will drop a screenshot onto your desktop which you could then email to me to give me a better idea of what the problem is.

iPad won't take the Update

I cannot update on my I pad.   Is my ipad too old?  Software update failed is the message I received. 

If your iPad were too old it would not allow for a software update to even be attempted so that's not iikely to be the reason. I've had others with the same issue and I've been recommending they try directly plugging in your device into a computer and running the update from there. In 10.15 Catalina and higher you'll use a Finder window to run the update once the device is plugged in. Earlier versions of the computer OS would use iTunes/Music.

Do you replace batteries and screens?

Do you repair/swap out batteries for laptops? Specifically we have a MacBook Air Retina 13 in. 2019 that no longer charges, or i have not figured out how to charge.

Also we are in need of help repairing a iPad Air 4th generation. The screen is shattered. do you have suggestions for who would repair that. UBreak-UFix doesn’t appear to do that model for some reason.

Sorry to say I don’t do hardware repairs any longer. Batteries can often be the first thing to go on a computer as every rechargeable battery in the world has a limited number of times it can be charged and discharged. I place that number at around 450 charge cycles. After a battery has been fully depleted and recharged many times it will eventually hold less and less charge then eventually not be able to charge at all. To find the number of times your battery has cycled, you can go under the Black Apple and select “about this Mac” then under “Overview” select System Report. There’s you’ll see Power in the left column and you’ll be able to find the “cycle count”. It’s just so satisfy one’s curiosity more than anything but an interesting number to know.

Due to where some third party repair services get their replacement parts like batteries and screens, I prefer not to use the small store repair places. I would use the Apple store. While the repairs may be more expensive, you know you are getting good quality parts and an easy warranty to deal with.

iMovie memory leak

Hi Scotty,
I’m trying to put together some video clips for college coaches. I get a lot of beachballs and “Out of application memory” messages. Im not sure why.


The problem looks like iMovie has what I call hanging ram. In other words, it's asking for memory but forgetting it has any and keeps asking. Therefore your entire computer runs out of memory because it keep unnessasarily giving it to iMovie. This can also be referred to as a "memory leak".

First, shut down and restart your computer. Not restart. Actually shut it all the way down. If that doesn't solve it, next reset the NVRam. To do so, hold down command+option+p+r and let the computer chime 3 times before letting go during start up. If you don't hear the receptive chimes then you would be better served using a wired keyboard. Sometimes wireless keyboards don't trigger the NVRam startup command.

If that doesn't work, we would need to go to the next level. To check system memory usage you can use Activity Montior to monitor memory pressure. (Available in the applications folder, sometimes inside Utilities folder).

Error occuring during Big Sur install

Scotty, just tried updating the software on my laptop. Updating to Big Sur. Updating with it plugged into the power outlet.

I have gotten the “an error has occurred, try again” message. Tried a couple of times.


I could use a little more info. Do you already have Big Sur MacOS 11 installed and just trying to do an update or are you moving from a previous OS like Catalina or earlier?

If so, what is the previous OS installed currently?

Are you going through t App Store to get to the Big Sur download? If not, try that next instead of using the Software update tool in System preferences. If you are able to download Big Sur through the App Store it will appear in your Applications folder as "MacOS Big Sur installer" or similar. You can restart your computer and launch it from there possibly.

Lastly, it's not crucial to get to Big Sur as MacOS Monterey will be out by the end of October so you could always wait for that as well.

How to remove data from your device and other questions

i have a several year old iPad with 16GB however I have about 1/2 GB of space available.  In trying to free up space I have a few questions:
Photos & Data
  • i have photos of xxx GB but I am concerned about deleting them on my iPad since I am not sure if they will be deleted from my iPhone as well.  
  • I'm not sure if these photos are in iCloud so it won't matter if I delete them from the device,  I'm not sure how to check or how to move to iCloud
  • i have 300MB of documents and data in Chrome.  I'm not sure what that is, how to find out, and then how to delete uneeded D&D
Credit for trade in
  • I have seen something recently about a credit for trading in an existing iPad for a new one.  I feel like I could benefit from an upgrade and curious if you are familiar with this program

1. You are right. Your photos on each device are VERY likely synced so only delete pictures from a device that you are prepared to lose on all devices.
2. To check your photo library in the cloud, go to and log in using your appleID. You'll most likely be asked to authenticate with a 6 digit two factor code that will be sent to one of your other devices. You should see all the same pictures using that website that are on your other devices. If you don't, you may not have iCloud photos turned on in your iCloud settings on all devices.
3. Easiest way to remove associated data on your phone is to delete the app. In this case chrome. It will then remove the app and the cached data. You can then re-add the app if you'd like and it will have a smaller footprint.
4. Yes, trade in is available with Apple. They'll ask a couple questions about your previous device and determine how much credit to apply. More info available at

iPad not showing iOS 14.8 is available

Not seeing the 14.8 available on my iPad yet. What's going on?


1. iPad needs to either have over 50% battery or be plugged in.
2. iPad would need enough space.
3. iPad may be too old for update. However if it’s already on 14.x then it will definitely take 14.8. To find what iOS you’re on, go to settings/general/about

What do you think of Password programs?

Do you know about the password app OnePass? Employee is wanting to put this on everything so we don’t have one person in charge of everything. Let me know. Thank you!!

Password keepers have pros and cons. It comes down to one's ability to remember the master password.


  • They offer self generated extremely strong random passwords
  • Allows syncing across multiple devices
  • Usually have decent accompanying apps that have good layouts which allow for better organization.

  • Usually by subscription.
  • If you forget the master password you are screwed.
  • If you are in a situation where you just want access to a certain site but don't have that password program installed, you would need to manually type the crazy long pw.

The way I approach this with clients comes down to my assessment of their skill level. If they are a little aggressive with tech or security then I give them the go ahead to use a password application. However, if they are a novice or have a low level of technical understanding, I steer them away.

Final thoughts:
If you have a trusted member of your staff who is eager to utilize a password app, you don't mind yet another subscription, and you are 100% confident you won't forget the master password then go ahead.

Running low on Application Memory.

new iMac computer been slow pulling up stuff. Then get this?  What do I do?


Several things to try.

1. Quit or Force Quit all applications.
2. Restart.
3. Restart holding down command+option+p+r and listen for 3 chimes then release.

If neither of these resolve the issues, next step would be to go into the Activity monitor and try to discover the issue. Another consideration is how much free hard drive space you have. Application ram should be using the actual ram of the computer but can borrow from the hard drive temporarily. This could cause the issue as well.

While there can be many reasons one sees this message, in my experience, it's most commonly due to a "memory leak" caused by one program. When a program opens, it asks for ram. When the program is quit, it is SUPPOSED to release that ram back to the computer for some other program to use it later. Sometimes however, a program will just keep asking for more ram (forgetting that it already has enough.). By the looks, the largest amount of ram has been given to Outlook. Not uncommon for a piece of MS Office to go rogue. There are other ways to solve this but test the above methods first and if it persists, I'm happy to assist with more geeky solutions.

How to scan multiple pages into one pdf file

I’ve been practicing the scan routine and just realized that I didn’t ask you about emailing a document that is longer than just a single page. Not sure how to do this. Thanks.

You'll want to combine multiple documents into 1 pdf file. There are ways to do this after they've been scanned but luckily image provides a way to allow you to scan several docs then combines them into one pdf file before saving it or emailing.

Use the checkbox seen in the example below to combine all the docs into one pdf file.

Once the document is saved, a good way to tell the difference between a single pdf file versus a pdf with multiple pages is to look for the black rib on the left side of the pdf icon itself. Example below.

If you've already scanned multiple pdfs and need to combine them, there's a way to do that as well but image capture would not play a role in that task.

iPHone not resolving URLs when not on WiFi.

Why do I get this message and Rick’s always  safari works? Our internet is down and I am trying to use cellular. It happens all the time and he searches the exact same topic and his works. I checked our settings and they are the same. So frustrating …


First, make sure you turn off wifi completely. Secondly, there’s some oddness to the address you quoted….

Is not an actual path to a successful search due to the fact that the : is missing after https at the beginning. Also, there would need to be some punctuation after the “com” portortion of the address as well. comsearch would not work. So that seems broken. Not sure why the URL is formatting that way.

Also, make sure you’ve granted permission for each individual app, including Safari, to use Cell data. These settings can be found within the Cellular settings on your iPhone.

Next, download Chrome for iPhone and see if the problem persists across multiple browsers. This will tell us if it’s Safari’s fault of phone setting’s fault.

Why is my screen being recorded?

I just had this message pop up on my screen when logging in. Upon a quick Google search, I can’t tell if it’s a problem, a scam, or what. Figured it’s important enough to get your insight.

Any suggested next steps?


That absolutely does sound scary but here's most likely what's going on…In Apple's attempt to try to bring our privacy to the forefront, they are revealing/exposing potential security issues of which you may not be aware. However in their blunt fashion, they tend to overstate what's actually going on. My guess is that this statement should actually read something like "zoom has permission to record your screen the next time you are in a zoom session and you click to record your screen because you gave zoom permission to record your screen."

If that is the case, go into system preferences/security and privacy/accessibility/screen recording/ then uncheck any services you feel you don't need to grant access. You can always just flip it back on.

If it's not in Screen Recording, try Accessibility. That should do it.

I have duplicate contacts on my phone.

I have duplicate contacts on my phone. What do I do?


A couple things could be at play here.

1. You might have contacts turned on for more than one account. For example: google contacts, exchange contacts, iCloud contacts. If this is the case, just going into settings/contacts/accounts/ then turning off contacts for any email account other than iCloud would most likely solve the issue.

2. You may have the contacts not only in iCloud but perhaps copies “on my phone”. If this is the case, the best way to check that is to go into the contacts app, select “groups”, turn off iCloud. If you see a group called “on my phone” and you see lots and lots of contacts still on your phone then that’s the problem. The way we would handle that would be to do the to do the following:

on the phone; go to iCloud settings, turn off contacts. It’s going to ask you if you’d like to remove. Say yes.
wait about 2 minutes then turn contacts back on within iCloud. It’s now going to ask you if you’d like to merge. Say yes.
You should now no longer have any “on my phone” contacts as they would have merged into your iCloud account however, there could now be duplicates within iCloud.
If that is the case, you would next go into the Address book app on the computer and under Card in the menu bar, select “look for duplicates”.

Which VPN should I get?

Can you recommend a software for corporate security(vpn, firewall etc)

VPNs are a very good way to maintain your privacy when traveling or at home. A vpn usually comes as a computer application and an iPhone or iPad app as well so you would use the same log in to use either. The ones I point people to as first time vpn users most often are:

NordVPN (easiest to use)

As you become more experienced using VPNs you'll start to discover that not all are created equal and you may find that one vpn better suits your needs than another. (Example: trying to use your Netflix account when abroad) But for general privacy most of them are great.

For more info on VPNs, here's a great site to read up.

Is this ATT email real?

Hi! I got this email last night but he had not discontinued his ATT cellular service. What should I do?


that email is not from ATT but rather a “survey company” of some sort. I would ignore it

Is my AppleID safe?

this morning I got a message that popped up on his ATT phone that said “Your Apple ID and phone number are now being used for FaceTime on a new Apple Watch”. What should we do?

First thing to do is to log into and account for all the devices currently logged in to your appleID. You can also do this from your phone under the iCloud settings as well. It’s not uncommon to see super old devices that have never been removed so don’t worry too much about that.

m1 chip and hard drives

I need to buy a backup for the new desktop - do these new mac’s have some special requirements for external hard drives? I ask because my mom got a new laptop as well and she was reading about some adapter she has to get when she buys a backup. Your expertise is appreciated!

No special requirement really. You can use any hard drive with a USB to USBC adapter. You can, of course, just buy a USBC hard drive but there’s really no need to spend extra money. Since this particular drive would just be for backup, performance gains using USBC would not be noticeable.

How should I handle my music library with my new iMac?

I just got the new desktop iMac with the m1 chip and I have already moved over all the files/photos etc I want, but iTunes is the big problem. What do I with that whole program? You know I’ve got thousands and thousands of songs on it and my iPod classic is how I listen to them. I sync it all the time to add new stuff, but I’m afraid this old desktop will go soon and I don’t know how to save ALL of this music.

iTunes (now called “Music”) has a specific file called the ituneslibrary file that contains all the actual music files. This is usually located in the Music folder of the user however I seem to remember you may have kept your music library under a different user or perhaps it lived in the “shared” folder. It seems like you didn’t just have it in the traditional place.

As long as you have a large enough internal drive on your new Mac, you could just move that over continue with business as usual however keep in mind there will come a point soon where Apple will no longer support the iPod. Sounds crazy I know but we are headed there.

There is an alternative way to deal with this and that is “iCloud music library”. AKA: iTunes Match. If you pay for that service, Apple basically takes note of all the songs you have and if they are already available in the Music store Apple makes them available to your account. If they are rare or unique then they upload the audio file to their server and give you access to it across all your devices that are able to talk to the cloud. (Not an iPod classic)

This is one way to work around the problem if you don’t have enough space on your internal hard drive or phone etc…

Another way is to have an external drive dedicated to storing your music. That does not count as your backup drive. Your backup drive would then be yet another drive that is told to back up both your internal drive and your music drive. Sounds more complicated that it actually is.

Stuck CD in iMac

we have a cd stuck in a home iMac. Is that something you can help with?

Yes, I can remove the CD from the iMac but before you schedule me to do that, have you first tried the simple fix of turning off the computer, then booting it up with the mouse button held down? If could require a wired mouse but worth a try. If the CD player was just confused via software, this may eject it. However if it is actually physically stuck then the next steps are applying a small amount of pressure with a thin piece of plastic like a credit card. This may dislodge the stuck disc. If all else fails then I can disassemble the computer to get it out.

Computer won't boot after Big Sur update

Hey Scotty!

My iMac has been super slow the past couple months, especially after I put Big Surr on it. Today it was frozen so I tried to restart it, but it was stuck on this screen screen (below). 

So then I tried to started by holding in shift R, and then it ultimately came up with the screen with a
🚫 instead of the 🍎. I then restart it and now it’s back stuck on the on the screen pictured below again. 

I’m assuming I need to reinstall Big Sur? Any advice?

90% of the time, these are indicators that a SATA hard drive is failing. I don’t know what type of drive is in your Mac but boy those SATA drives are terrible. 3 types of drives:

SATA (spinning)
Solid State (no moving parts, very reliable and very fast, never see them fail)
Fusion drives (hybrid mixture of the two above. Can still fail but not as often)

On to your issue, if it’s not physical then here are a few things to try next:

Boot into recovery mode and run disk utility repair
Boot holding down shift to prevent any possible 3rd party extensions from running
Boot into Single user or Verbose mode to watch the start up process through the command line to get a possible idea of where the startup is hanging.

My guess though is that it’s the hard drive. If I’m right, then reinstalling macOS 11 will only further stress an already dying drive.
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