Category Archives: General Computer

General computer questions and answers, for both Windows and Mac OS machines

What ports do I have on my device? Sorting out cables, USB, Thunderbolt and Firewire

USB Host ports A host is a computer or another device with an operating system, that has the ports and the OS support (and drivers) to control a USB device. Where are the ports? If it is a desktop computer, … Continue reading

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Can I build a gaming computer under $1000? Sept 2019 edition

Posted on March 15, 2018 by quill It’s September 2019 and we are revisiting our exercise in budget computing: Can we build a computer that will give acceptable gaming performance for under $1000 Canadian? There’s a whole lot of new to look at … Continue reading

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RyZen and DDR4 Memory – what to look for

AMD’s RyZen and RyZen third generation (Zen2) CPUs have rewritten the conventional wisdom around computer processors, the one that goes “Intel is the performance and innovation leader, and AMD follows behind with lower performance chips for the budget market”. The … Continue reading

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Mac Pro Refresh 2019 – Expansion and memory

Apple finally brought a new Mac Pro design to the table. It is a return to the tower format, with some serious expandability and options. The CPU(s) are still Xeon workstation class processors, which means far higher expandability and bandwidth … Continue reading

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iMac 2019 Memory configuration

The 27 inch iMac for 2019 (5K, 2019) introduced DDR4 memory at the 2666 MHz speed, and an upper limit of 128 GB RAM. DDR4-2666 (PC4-21300) non ECC SODIMMs. Apple originally stated a 64 GB limit, however 32 GB modules … Continue reading

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Can I build a gaming computer under $1000 March 2018 edition

It’s March 2018 and we are revisiting our exercise in budget computing: Can we build a computer that will give acceptable gaming performance for under $1000 Canadian? Here’s what’s new: DDR4 RAM has doubled in price, and dragged SSD pricing higher along … Continue reading

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The king is dead, long live the king – iMac Pro announced

Apple announced the release in December 2017 of the iMac Pro, a multicore Xeon based iMac all in one machine. Its hard to see this as anything other than the death-knell for the cylindrical MacPro platform – the same processor, … Continue reading

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I have lousy WiFi reception – what can I do?

I can’t get good WiFi reception in my living room, my router is in the basement on the opposite side of the house In order to achieve reliable WiFi performance, you have to get a strong radio signal from the router … Continue reading

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USB 3.1 and USB Type C: What *is* that port?

The latest iteration of the USB standard is making its way onto motherboards and into notebooks.  With USB 3.1 Type A connectors and USB C (or Type C) connectors, 5 Gbps and 10 Gbps, we have a bit of ‘splaining … Continue reading

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DDR4 memory makes its debut

DDR4 memory starts shipping for desktop machines and servers. Through the years, the DDR Memory standard has been updated to DDR2, DDR3 and now DDR4 (JEDEC Satandard JESD79-4). It’s worthwhile to note that despite sharing the DDR name, each of these … Continue reading

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How can I reinstall OSX and keep my bookmarks and mail?

I would like to do a reinstall my OSX as I am having problems. I do have a backup Can I transfer my browsers favorites, contacts and previous e-mails without losing them? Here are several specific points, but read this … Continue reading

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How can I make a bootable OSX USB installer?

Reinstalling OSX on a Macintosh is sometimes necessary, whether you are upgrading or whether you need to repair a problem. The problem is that after Snow Leopard, Apple abandoned DVD media and gone exclusively to downloadable installers.  And, many recent … Continue reading

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Can I build a $600 gaming machine?

The CAN$600 question is, can an uber-affordable machine deliver an acceptable gaming experience?  And the answer is: with the right expectations, yes. The first thing that has to go out the window is the idea that you have to play … Continue reading

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Can I build a gaming computer under $1000? (Apr 2015 edition)

It’s April 2015 and we are revisiting our exercise in budget computing: Can we build a computer that will give acceptable gaming performance for under $1000 (In our 80 pound weakling Canadian dollars)? In the past year we have seen DDR3 … Continue reading

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Superfish malware installed on new machines exposes HTTPS browsing

If you have a new Lenovo laptop, do this today: Check for Superfish and eliminate it Software called Superfish, a “Visual Search enhancer” product pre-installed on new consumer laptops from Lenovo among other brands, has been revealed to have severe … Continue reading

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