Up Your Media Apple Web and Tech Blog

Parksville / Qualicum Beach's only Apple Certified Macintosh Technician (ACMT) and Apple Support Professional, Dan LaRocque, posts semi-regular tips and blogs about his day-to-day experiences with Macintosh computer technology, social media, web marketing & design and other technology related developments.

Self-Care For Your Mac Computer

Finally finished the resource file from a presentation I did for the PQMug last April 2017. Self-Care For Your Mac computer, in movie format. Steps you can take to troubleshoot and maintain your iMac or MacBook before calling a technician.


How To Clear Your Browser Caches and Cookies

Screen Shot 2017 04 13 at 5.42.22 PMIt was a good meeting last night of the MUG, 2 hours of steady discussion about DIY care and maintenance of your Mac computer. One thing we had to rush at the end was how to clear your browser cookies and caches. So for Jornn, who was asking, In Safari, navigate to the Preferences in the Safari menu and choose the Privacy tab. Select Manage Website Data and then choose to remove all data. This will clear all cookies and browser cache files off your computer, for security and performance. 

The 4 Main Components Of Your Apple Computer, And What Can Possibly Go Wrong?

There are 4 main components to your computer that dictate performance and can periodically require maintenance

  1. Hard Drive - The hard drive is where your personal data, plus OS and other software, is stored. Most drives are mechanical (HDD) but more modern drives are Solid State (SSD). HDDs are more likely to fail than SSDs but both can experience corruptions due to volume count and directory errors. A disk repair generally costs about $100 while a disk replacement runs from $250-$300. Don’t forget to buy an external hard drive as a Tme Machine backup.
  2. RAM - or Random Access Memory is independent of the hard drive, and is available, generally, to the software and applications as the computer is operating. The more you have, the faster your computer will run. To determine how much you have, look in the About This Mac dialogue in your Apple menu. 
  3. macbook pro logic boardLogic board - This contains the CPU and the GPU (graphics processing unit). Sometimes the graphics processor will fail due to too much heat or other factors. Often this can be replaced or repaired, usually at a cost of $300-$500. IF YOU SPILL WATER, WINE, COFFEE, OR ANY OTHER LIQUID IN YOUR COMPUTER, it can “possibly” be fixed depending on the amount and location of the corrosion and electrical shorting the liquid caused. It WILL be expensive, between $300-$500. The alternative to repairing either of these situations is to replace the logic board altogether, usually around $800-$1000.
  4. Software - I like to say that over the past 10-20 years, the hardware in your personal computer hasn’t changed that dramatically. However, the software that runs that hardware changes constantly. I regularly see operating systems from 2007 (Snow Leopard 10.6.8) and every variation in between, while the current one today is Sierra (10.12.3). In addition, the other native softwares in your machine, ie., Safari, iTunes, Photos, etc need regular updates, as do third party applications like Microsoft Word, Flash, and Java. Not every operating system is appropriate for every vintage of computer, even if it’s compatible according to Apple. 

Memory (RAM) vs Storage Capacity

Memory vs Storage.

It’sScreen Shot 2017 03 01 at 12.41.55 PM important to know the difference between memory and storage capacity on your computer. RAM, or system memory, is used for temporary processing storage, and contributes to the speed of your computer.

Storage is the overall capacity of your hard drive, i.e., how manysongs, pictures and documents you can keep on your drive.  Most iMacs contain 1 TB of capacity. Newer MacBook Airs and Pros tend to use Solid State (SSD) drives, with faster speed and less capacity, although the capacity vs cost is getting better. If your startup disk should become too full, performance will be negatively affected. 

You can check both these specifications on your machine by going to the About This Mac dialogue via your Apple menu at the very top left of your screen. Click on Storage to see what is taking up the bulk of the capacity of your machine.

Screen Shot 2017 03 01 at 12.41.55 PMBoth these components can generally be upgraded. It’s best practice to have the most RAM possible in your computer to maximize performance. To find out the maximum RAM for your model, check out this webpage.  Hard drives can also be upgraded with either mechanical HDDs (low cost, high capacity, slower speed) or SSDs (high cost, low capacity, higher speed). Call 250-240-3564 to inquire about details and costs on your memory and hard drive upgrades.


  • Hi Dan,

    I picked up quite a few useful things in class even without a laptop, and enjoyed the course. Do please let me know if you decide to offer an intermediate level follow up. Thanks,


  • Dan retrieved the iPhoto library I had deleted from my boyfriend's computer from a Time Machine backup I didn't even know we had. Thank you Dan, you saved my bacon!

  • Your expeditious replacement of my hard drive is very much appreciated. I had a little trouble restoring the system, but it's now working perfectly (and it seems to be a little faster).In my excitement I forgot to ask about warranty. What do I do?Thank You again

     Trevor W Jackson

  • Whoa .....fabulous ...wonderful ...fantastic ...beautiful......OMG ...thank you so much. I will look into the photos and see what I can do  ....touble is I don't actually know much about Marilyns life! I will make something up .....!!  wow Wonderful to what you have created...


  • Just got home. plugged the router and computer in and its working!!!  Go figuure. You must have done something right.


    Al Z

  • Just a quick note to thank you again for coming by……this is working ever so much better. See you next month.
  • Hi Dan,What a difference!  My MacBook is working much faster now, and not getting hung up.  The newer OS and more memory really helped.Thank you.


  • Hi Dan,

    It was great to meet you and thanks for your help, I love the dual screen and upgrades. I seem to have forgotten how to access the iphoto shots from the original iphoto and can only find the few new ones, can you re direct me.


  • Hi Dan, thanks for the January newsletter. I added my vote to you for "outstanding customer service".


  • Hi Dan:

    Thank you so much for helping out with my urgent problem the other day, so promptly – and from the arena! I really did appreciate it (and was so impressed!).