Snow Leopard 10.6 - Upgrade Hell 
Sunday, August 30, 2009, 06:48 PM
Ok, maybe it isn't upgrade hell, but it does definitely remind me of a windows upgrade.

The upgrade of the OS went smooth. No problems, it even freed up 12.04 gig of space, or at least that's what's reported.

So lets start the list of things that don't work anymore:

Cisco VPN Client, won't start anymore. Error 51: Unable to ocmmunicate with the VPN subsystem. lease make sure that you have at least one network interface that is currently active and has an IP address and start this application again. But the good news, it's now integrated into the OS. I just need to get the necessary configuration information from my local IT department.

TivoDesktop service won't start anymore. I click on system preferences, and the service isn't started. When I click start, it flips to stop for a second or two and then flips back to start. I thought I would check to see if there was an update. I pulled it down and get the following error: The specified message could not be found for the index 19. Still looking for a fix for this.

Tivo ToGo I haven't tried it but it doesn't work after the upgrade according to the Roxio website: Snow Leopard updates for TiVo ToGo

HP Photosmart C7280 - Don't get me started, HP driver support sucks! The software for scanning is no longer supported. But the good news is that OSX now has it integrated, but no OCR. Seems like when I print now I get a black line on the page somewhere. I seem to remember this from when I got the printer, it took HP a few months to fix that one.

From the HP support site:

NOTE: HP Scan Pro software (from Mac OS X 10.4, 10.5) is not supported in Snow Leopard. The HP icon for HP Device Manager still in the dock after upgrade is not functional and should be removed.

NOTE: Scan support from pushing the Scan button on the printer is not supported with this version of the scan interface built into Snow Leopard. Scan functionality is supported by scanning directly from the computer.

I don't ever think it's a good thing to take functionality away during an upgrade. Granted, I didn't use the scan to computer feature a lot, but it was nice to have.

BodyBugg - Looks like the wife's BodyBugg doesn't work with 10.6. The inhstaller won't even complete: System extension cannot be used The system extension "/System/Library/Extensions/Soundflower.kext" was installed improperly and cannot be used. Please try reinstalling it, or contact the product's vendor for an update.
Here is an updated Soundflower that supposedly works on Snow Leopard:

I tried it out but no luck. CRAP!
Those are the problems I have noticed so far.


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Use iTunes to Shop on Amazon 
Saturday, January 10, 2009, 02:08 PM
Here is a pretty cool script. Install it and then go shopping in the iTunes store. When you find an Artist or Album you like, run the script. It will pop a browser window and bring up the same music on the Amazon store.

Advantageous MP3


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Using Tivo as an Airtunes Client with an iMac 
Saturday, April 19, 2008, 08:19 AM
I recently discovered Airtunes. A cool apple product that allows you to stream music playing on your iTunes right to your stereo. The down side is the cost, $100 for a new Airport Express. They are in demand and have a street price of $75 or more on eBay. Seems pricey for something that shouldn't be too expensive. $40-$50 is more than a fair price.

Since I have a TiVo already connected up to my stereo, I thought it would make the perfect client. I started googling to see if I could find a way to stream music playing on my iMac right to the TiVo. There is a lot of information out there and a lot of open source solutions that are supposed to work. After a lot of trial and error I came down to what I think is the easiest solution. Nicecast and the TiVo Desktop solve my problem. Nicecast will allow you to broadcast any audio coming from your iMac. TiVo desktop can be used to play non purchased music on your TiVo.

Highlevel Steps:
1. Download and install NiceCast
2. Download and install TiVo Desktop
3. Start up NiceCast, Confiure it to broadcast iTunes and click Start Broadcast
4. Inside of iTunes, click Advanced, open stream, enter the URL for your Nicecast stream stopping at the port number. (IE: The stream will automatically start playing, hit stop.
5. Create a new Playlist called AirTunes, copy the new Stream to it and an MP3. Without the MP3, TiVo Desktop won't recognize the playlist as valid.
6. Restart iTunes so the TiVo Desktop will recognize the newly created playlist.
7. Go to System Preferences and click the Tivo Desktop icon. Click the publish my music, select any playlist you want in addition to the newly created playlist. Click Start to turn on Tivo Desktop
8. Start playing music on iTunes.
9. From the TiVo, navigate to the published music. Select the newly created playlist, select the broadcast, click select to start playing.
You should now hear the music that is playing on your iTunes!

This setup will work for 20 minutes until NiceCast starts adding static to the music to encourage you to purchase a $40 license.

There are other TiVo clients that are supposed to be able to pickup the broadcast stream, Galleon is one of them. I was unsuccessful at getting this to work. Maybe when I am bored I will write my own TiVo client specifically for this application. In my perfect world the TiVo would be playing from my NiceCast stream, displaying text on what is playing, all while displaying pictures from my iPhoto library.

Maybe someday.

Finally a success story instead of frustration!

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Streaming Video to the Wii 
Sunday, March 16, 2008, 09:36 AM
I thought it would be cool to setup a media server for the Wii so the boys can watch their cartoons on demand using the Wii. This is proving to be quite difficult. There are quite a few programs out there that do this but none seem to work.

Wii Media Center X - This appears to lock up the Wii after streaming for about a minute and a half.

Wii Transfer - When I click on the movie to play, nothing happens.

Orb - I am not real excited about sending my video to the orb server and then back to my Wii. I have yet to try this out.

Other options:
Wiideo Center

If anyone has anything that works, I am all ears.

Update 04-19-2008
Alright, I finally was able to get something to work. Looks like TVersity is the ticket. I was able to take some of the kids cartoons and stream the successfully to the Wii. Unfortunately, the quality of the video is not so good, so I don't think I will actually use the Wii for streaming. Plus I would have had to convert my Video to yet another format.

Time to move on to the next project, poor man's Airtunes!

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Problems with the iMac 
Tuesday, January 29, 2008, 07:05 PM
Ok, here is a brief list of my issues with the Mac so far, November 07 to January 08:

1. While listening to mp3's with iTunes, the whole system crashed. The screen went blank and the machine was making a beating sound through the speakers. This has only happened once. The MP3 was off of a CD and was ripped several years ago with an old xing encoder. I had to power off and back on to re-gain control.

2. Occasionally an application will just evaporate. I have seen this happen with most of the iLife applications. It doesn't happen often, but I do see it from time to time. The application seems to recover quite nicely and automatically restarts.

3. This one is the biggest point of pain for me. Duplex printing on my new HP C7280 multifunction printer doesn't work properly. I don't have control over the binding so the back pages of the print are upside down. This apparently is a common problem on Leopard with HP printers. What a pain! I hate it. This is the thing that ticks me off the most. New computer, new printer, and they don't get along well together.

Update 2/8 HP has finally provided working drivers!

4. The end key! I miss the way the end key works on Windows. I have remapped the key as best I can but sometimes I still have to use the old command right arrow. I know this is the way Unix is, but I don't care.

Over all, I am still pretty happy with the system. I still am impressed with the way iMovie handles video.

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Microsoft Office 2008 on the iMac 
Tuesday, January 29, 2008, 06:53 PM
I just installed Microsoft Office 2008 on the good old Mac. Looks pretty cool. I decided not to use Open Office for two reasons. First, I didn't want to run it under X-windows. And Second, I didn't want to deal with any possible compatibility issues (with Office). I don't know that I would have problems, it just wasn't something I was interested in investing time in.

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