Archive for July, 2006

Squeaking Noise: Fixed!!!

Thursday, July 20th, 2006

Well after being nearly driven mad by this infuriating squeaking noise for a couple of weeks, I finally fixed it. :)

Did I fix it by reinstalling the OS? No…

Did I fix it by upgrading the OS? No…

Did I find out it was some obscure software problem? No…

Did I send it back to Apple? Did I hell – no way I’m losing my primary workstation for 2 weeks just so they can replace a CPU fan.

Here’s how to fix it in 1 easy step (warning/disclaimer – this is not recommended, it may break your mac, invalidate your warranty or cause the sky to cave in, etc etc):

Rap the back of the Mac with your knuckles, about 3 or 4 inches above the USB ports.

That’s it! No cunning solution or workaround, just good old-fashioned physical violence. I got so annoyed by the squeak that I just gave it a whack one day as a last-ditch attempt, and the squeak stopped instantly. Came back a couple of hours later (but much quieter) – hit it again, stopped instantly. Came back once more a day later (very quiet) – hit it again, stopped instantly. It’s gone from squeaking every hour or so to not a single tiny squeak for two whole weeks (and counting).

Bliss :)

I guess that whack must have reseated the fan onto its spindle or something.

Now I like my Mac again…

Going the Other Way

Friday, July 7th, 2006

Interestingly, there have been a couple of big stories in the news recently about some well-known Mac users switching the other way, from Mac to Linux. One of them is Mark Pilgrim, a chap I have a lot of respect for after reading his excellent Dive Into Python book.

I can see his point about file formats. I want to make sure that my data is going to be accessible in 20+ years’ time (particularly my photos, with their names, descriptions, tags and a record of which album they’re in). iPhoto, iTunes et al seem fairly flexible on the export front but at the end of the day they are proprietary file formats, which is a concern.

For now though I (perhaps foolishly) see ease of use and features as more important, so I’m sticking with the Mac at present!

By the way, the squeak remains. It comes and goes – sometimes there’s nothing for a whole day (or it’s too quiet to notice), then suddenly it’s back with a vengeance. My workaround when it happens is to sleep the Mac, wait 30 seconds, then wake it again. This usually stops the squeak for a good few hours (maybe because of the fans revving up momentarily when waking from sleep?). It’s still pretty pesky though. If it doesn’t get better after a few weeks then I expect I’ll be on the phone to Apple.