Wednesday, November 23, 2011

iPhone 3G and 3GS AT&T GoPhone (no contract account)

I have tested this with a iPhone 3G and 3GS, it should work with an iPhone 4 but I do not have theAT&T version to test, this will not work with a Verizon iPhone.

Very simple and affordable way to use your iPhone off contract. you do not need to jail break your iPhone or unlock it.

here is what you need and the steps

iPhone 3G or 3GS (Maybe iPhone 4, not 4s)

AT&T GoPhone SIM card (I got mine from Amazon for $3)

Active the SIM card by going online or customer service, they will ask you for the SIM card ID and the EMI number, I had an older AT&T phone so I gave them that or you can just tell them you do not have one yet. Do not give them the iPhone EMI number.

Place SIM card in iPhone and it will search the network and you should be ready to go, you will need to fund your GoPhone account from your credit card and then you will be able to go online and by services.

In most cases the data plan will work but you will need to create a custom APN setting for it, just go to on your iPhone (make sure you are connected to the internet through WiFi) and select the Cingular APN for iPhone. once you have done that turn off WiFi and test the data.

Thats it, no jail breaking or unlocking, My GoPhone account is setup with 10cents per minute and 10MB of data, I don't use this as my primary phone much and just wanted an iPhone for some data.

Post a reply of your experience

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

OSX software update 10.7.2 and iOS 5

Some are reporting problems but I have had no issues with 10.7.2 on my MBP or my wife's MB, on Hackintosh 10.7.2 works great but you will need an updated Chameleon boot patched to work with iCloud and FaceTime.

Having no issues with iOS on our iPhone 4 and iPad, iCould works but really needs some improvement, I am not sure I am liking the photo stream yet as you cannot delete just one photo from it.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Windows 8 Developer Preview

Downloaded and installed on my backup machine. install process is very simple and typical of Windows but after that, things are very different. You configure your computer much like a Mac and once that is done you are no using Microsofts Metro interface, this interface is designed for touch devices and the look and feel is not that good, clunky and messy. This is a developer preview so I am sure the release version will  be much different (it better be). I was able to learn the new OS with in 20 minutes and navigating around you can find all the familiar tools and things that you have in Windows 7. I installed apps that I use and a click on the desktop in metro brings me to a familiar windows desktop. boot time is ver fast compared to Windows 7 and all my hardware was found and working.

I installed this on my older laptop and it did work but the graphics experience was slow and lagged, better use a new PC if you want to check this out.

I recommend you install this onto a different hard disk and keep your main OS intact as this OS may not be stable enough for long time use.

If you want to see it without installing it (recommended), go to youtube and watch some videos on it.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Apple Lion OS X Released

Apple has released Lion OS X, I installed it on my MacBookPro and my wife's MacBook, we are both enjoying the new features of this OS on our laptops. The new features seem to target the laptop users and make the experience more productive and easy to use. I didn't notice and speed increase in this OS and if anything maybe a little slower but with SSD drives in our laptops everything is snappy and fast, for $29 this is a no brainer upgrade and Apple allows you to install it on as many Apple PC's as you want.

Install OSX Lion on my PC, The latest boot loader injects just about everything needed to make this run on a PC as long as you have a good DSDT.aml. The only issues I have ran into so far is sleep not working well enough to use it and FaceTime not connecting to server. neither  are show stoppers for me and so far the experience has been positive.

Here is my simple installation of Lion on my PC, because I have a MBP I don't need to play with boot loaders and installation apps. I bought Lion from the app store and created a bootable DVD by mounting the DMG from the package and burning it.

  • load hard drive in a USB external case plug it into the already booted and running MBP
  • from the DVD run the install package, install Lion on the USB hard disk, a bout 30 minute process
  • when complete, hold the power down for 5 seconds and reboot the MBP with the USB HD unplugged
  • Plug USB drive back into the MBP after rebooted 
  • run myHack installer and install chameleon boot loader without sleep enabler
  • use Chameleon Wizard to update chameleon to r1078, this is important or Lion with not boot
  • install your DSDT.aml in /Exrta and load your needed .kext's in /Extra/Extension
  • take USB HD out of case and install it in the PC and boot
do some tweaking, mostly sound and ethernet and you are good to go. this is a simple install method and I have done the research on my hardware to make this work, you will need to do the same and should not be attempted until you have done so. 

Need help with this, PM me.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Apple Bluetooth working on PC - OS X

one of the issues with building a hackintosh is sleep, using a PC type bluetooth adapter will work but it will not wake from sleep. One solution is to use USB wired keyboard or mouse but I like having the full Apple OS X experience so I use the Bluetooth keyboard and magic/trackpad mouse.

To get an Apple Bluetooth module you have to buy one taken out of a Mac laptop, these can be found on ebay for $6 to $12, do not use a module from a G4 or Mac pro, these will not work and the Mac Pro module does not have pin outs for USB. The Apple module is also 3.3v and PC USB has 5v so a converter is needed, this is also on ebay as well.

Once these two items are wired up you are good to go, plugs into the USB port and now my hackintosh wakes after sleep on bluetooth keyboard or mouse.

5v to 3.3v converter to Apple Bluetooth module

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Mac OS X 10.7 Preview 3

I friend of mine got me OS X 10.7 P3, after reading the cool features and of course integrated FaceTime, I was interested in giving it a test drive. Before installing, I did some reading of user experiences and decided to do a clean install of Snow Leopard and then upgrade.

Here is the method I used on my MacBookPro (2008).

Installed clean 80GB hard disk
Booted and installed SnowLeopard DVD (hold down the C key and hit power)
Download 10.6.8 Combo update from Apple and install
Go to software update and install updates
install 10.7 P3 update (this is a App update)
Install apps I use.. Office 2011, Lotus Notes

I am not experiencing the same issues others are that updated from 10.7 P2 or from a system that started out with Leopard - SnowLeopard - 10.7, Maybe some issues with kexts or other software carried over from the later that causes issues with 10.7 P3.

If you want to see some of the new features OS 10.7 google it, looks like a great OS for us Mac users.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Ubuntu 11.04

Ubuntu 11.04 is in beta and scheduled to be released on April 28th, I have been running the beta version on my old laptop and so far I am please. The OS interface is very clean and app doc on the side is very easy to use and configure. The software is easy to use and finding the apps you need is fast. Just about everything you need can be downloaded within minutes and you can be online in a few hours after install.

One of Ubuntu strengths is it's ability to run fast on older / slower PC's, giving them new life and usefulness. If you need a good internet machine with office capabilities and social networking Ubuntu may be the right choice.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Windows 7 NIC

In my office I have Windows 7 and experienced issues with coping large files (2 to 8 gig) from my Mac, seemed that the NIC card just stopped working. Frustrated I started thinking why it would do this and took a look at the NIC card properties. I turned off Power Management and everything works fine now, speed has improved too.

Yeah, you probably already knew that but I didn't. Seems Windows 7 will engage power management on the NIC even if it is the middle of network traffic.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Digital footprint

Today we have yet another thing to think about, our digital footprint. We all have digital camera's and cell phones that take pictures and now even HD video camera's. So, how are you dealing with this digital media?. With gigabytes of pictures and video on our hard disks we need to make sure we are backing this stuff up. I have had the unfortunate task of recovering customers data on bad hard disk because they didn't practice backup processes. External hard disks are cheap and easy to use as backup sources for your digital media. A problem with this technology is remembering to back up your stuff. On a Mac we have  Time Machine and it is a great tool for backing up your data, Windows 7 has back up tools as well that will remind you to back up but both these cases you can over ride the message and continue with your tasks thus not backing up. Don't wait till its too late. always have a copy of your data on anther external drive, you may even want to consider keeping a third copy in an offsite location for even safer backups.

Please backup your data, all your memories can be gone by the next power outage.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Quansheng TG-UV2

Ham radio just got cheaper with Quansheng TG-UV2 dual band HT

I heard about these radios from another Ham and decided to buy one. I paid $90 shipped from Hong Kong and $14 for the programming cable.

Lots of specs online so I will just give you my experience with it

for the price you get the radio, battery, drop in charger, and a manual.

The menu's and manual need a little work but once you start programming you understand it, things like repeater offset are called frequency deviation.  The radio uses Kenwood accessories so speaker mics and programming cables are easy to find.

I programmed some local repeaters and called into some nets with no issues, the radio performs great and feels very well built in the hand.

The one I got was unlocked, TX on 136 173.995MHz, 400-469.995MHz and RX 470-519.995MHz
It also has RX for FM radio 88-108MHz

With this radio you can program in the FRS and Marine bands.
With RX at 470-520 I can program local PD and FD.

For the price and what you can do, its a hands down a winner, I leave mine at the office so I have emergency communications at all times, great disaster preparedness addition.

Is a hackintosh as stable as a real Mac ?

Is a Hackintosh as stable as a real Mac ?

Yes it can but, it all depends on how its configured and built. Hackintosh is not for the end user who wants to buy a computer, plug it in and start surfing / computing, as its name implies, its hacking the Apple OS to run on non Apple hardware. Is this legal ?, that is open to debate and opinion and will not be covered here.

Hackintosh can be just as stable as a real Mac if you take the time and do some research. Not all hardware will work and laptops will be allot harder to get working, some laptops and desktops will not work at all but the good news is there is a wiki to look up hardware and even installation guides. Still, hackintosh is not for the non computer tech person, its more for someone who likes the Mac OS experience and likes to tinker with hardware and software. The term Hacker in this context refers to someone who enjoys getting the OS and hardware to work and not someone who hacks into banks or secure systems for illegal purposes.

The best representation of a stable Hackintosh would be my system, below is the hardware list.

Gigabyte EP 58X-USB3 Motherboard
Intel i7-950 3.10Ghz CPU
12GB (3x4) 1600 DDR3 memory
ATI Radeon 5870 1GB Video Card

The above list is the most important part of the hackintosh, Hard disks, DVD drives, power supply and cases are generic and anything new will work. I install Linux first and do some system testing before installing OS X to confirm all is good and working. What makes a hackintosh unstable is cheap parts, mixing memory sticks or using cheap power supply's, this will create an unstable Hackintosh just as it would a Windows PC.

Install process, this is how easy it is to install. you will need a Retail version of Snow Leopard $29

Download Boot CD and Install package
Boot PC with Boot CD
insert Snow Leopard DVD and hit F5
Install Snow Leopard
reboot PC with Boot CD
Install latest OS X update (in my case it was 10.6.6 Combo update) do not restart PC
Run installer package and select appropriate configuration items and reboot after removing Boot CD

You are now greeted by OS X running on your PC, make some config changes, maybe fix or tweak some setting hear and there and you are ready to start enjoying Hackintosh.

Everything that I posted in my blog is available by using Google and doing some research, directing you to every link and process will take the fun out of it but if you want a walkthrough guide email me or check out some of the relevant forums.