Friday, 21 September 2012

Powerpoint 2011 for Mac beeping with Ink Aware toolbar popping up

After just imaging a new computer suite with OS X 10.7.4 everything was going fine. That is until they tried to use Powerpoint 2011 for Mac. Every now and then the computer would pop up with "Ink Aware Toolbar" and constantly beep.

The only workaround for the time was to use Keynote which didn't have this problem.

After searching on the internet I found a few references to the problem and also and how to fix it. I first found this article describing how to turn this "ink aware" tool off. Seems it is related to SMART products, of which we have some Interactive Smartboards so the SMART software is installed, but not attached to these computers, so in theory it shouldn't run.

I also found this forum which describes the same problem with a solution much like the one previous.

Finally I looked into what Ink Aware was and found this official tutorial on how to remove it:
  1. Press the SMART Board icon in the notification area, and then select Control Panel.
    If your computer isn’t currently connected to an interactive product, the SMART Board icon includes an X in its lower-right corner .
  2. Press Configure SMART Tools.
  3. Press Ink Aware Program Settings.
    The Aware window appears.
    • If a check mark appears in the Aware Enabled column, the program is currently Ink Aware.
    • If the program is currently open, Running appears in the Status column.
  4. Do one of the following:
    • To disable Ink Aware for a program, clear the check box in the Aware Enabled column.
    • To disable Ink Aware for all software programs, press Clear All.
  5. Press OK.
    To enable Ink Aware for all programs, open the Aware dialog box, and then press Select All.

Friday, 14 September 2012

Sharing a MS Access database

So I've got an inventory database but have about 8 people who need to use it. Thought this wouldn't be a problem but turns out this stuff is more complex then it appears. When more then one person opens it (it's on a networked drive) a message keeps popping up about permissions. I did a quick search and found Microsofts help page here and there are a few options:

  • Put it on a network folder
    • done this which is where the problem is
  • Split the database to front end and back end
  • Use SharePoint
  • Use a Database Server
The ideal one would be a database server. But unfortunately I lack the knowledge to create the queries and forms for the web.

Next best is either SharePoint or splitting the database. Here's an article on SharePoint but I'm unsure whether we have SharePoint enabled somewhere and also how to do it.

My favourite option is Splitting the Database. Basically have the tables in on database (the backend) and the forms, queries and reports in another (front end). Heres a quick forum post on how to do it.

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Mac Pro 3,1 turns off straight away after power button press

It's quite difficult to phrase this in a concise way hence the longer title then I would have wanted. Basically, I have a Mac Pro 3,1 early 2008 model, which, when the power button is pressed, a fan turns on, power light comes on, and within 1 second the shutdown click is heard, fans turns off and power indicator light switches off.

After this, the power button does not do anything when pressed unless you wait at least 1 minute.

I tried a few different things at first which did not resolve the problem:

  • unplugged everything, waited 30 secs, plugged it back in again (SMC reset)
  • took out the Hard Drive
  • took out the RAM
  • took out the DVD drive
  • took out graphics card
Finally I thought I'd look it up and found this post and this post which both described the symptoms perfectly, and all answers pointed to a power supply problem.

Thought I'd check this out, but needed some instructions on how to get the power supply out. Found this manual which did the job. Looks like an official manual.

After taking it out, I cleaned it up with a can of air and put it back to no avail. Next I tried swapping with another out of a Mac Pro 3,1. The working one worked in the previously not working machine, and the broken one didn't work in the working machine (is that a good way to put this?).

So, conclusion, the Power Supply Unit is not working correctly. Reading the manual further I found that it looks like the "trickle feed" isn't working correctly.

Apple Part Number: 614-0409

Looks like a new one is about £280, or refurbished is £105 from USA.

Friday, 7 September 2012

iPad backup and restore confusion

So, originally I made one ipad work perfectly, backed it up using iTunes and then restored all the ipads using this backup. Over time, more backups have been made of numorous ipads and confusion has sunk in. I'm using this post to document which iPad backup I'm currently restoring from. So, for now, I will use:

iPad 11848 backed up on 7th Sept 2012.