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#819: 10.7.4 Update, Fix a Sluggish Home Button, Thunderbolt, eWaste Events in June


Here’s a question for you: How much stuff do you have in your attic or basement, or a storage shed someplace, that you just don’t need anymore?

You put it away, thinking some day you might need it. Perhaps it isn’t working, but you decided it was a waste to throw it out. Maybe you planned on getting it fixed so you could give it to someone going to college. More likely, it’s sitting in your house, taking up space and gathering dust. You’d throw it out, but sometimes you have to pay to get rid of it.

Now’s the time to do some house cleaning! Twice a year, we hold an eWaste Recycling Event so you can dump your old electronic gadgets. All you have to do is drag it to us, and we’ll do the rest. We have a team set up to unload your vehicle, put it on pallets, and haul it away—all for free! You don’t have to pay any disposal fees.

We’ll be holding two eWaste Recycling Events in June. On Saturday June 16, join us at the Mall of New Hampshire from 9am to 3pm. We’ll be set up in the rear parking lot near the Food Court entrance. Then, on Saturday June 30, we’ll be at Rutland High School from 9am to 3pm. We’ll take anything electronic—televisions, radios, DVD players, old computers, even microwaves and toasters. Last May, we collected almost 175 tons of stuff. Help us beat that number this year!

Click here for more info.

In this week’s Tech Tails, we bring you some info about the 10.7.4 update, how to fix a sticky Home button on your iOS device, and how to run multiple monitors on a Thunderbolt system.

As always, thanks for reading!


  Apple Releases OS X 10.7.4 Update  

Apple has released an update to Lion, bringing the OS version to 10.7.4. It includes a number of fixes, most notably that it patches a pretty serious FileVault bug.

Other notable fixes:

  • Resolves an issue in which the “Reopen windows when logging back in” setting is always enabled.
  • Improves Internet sharing of PPPoE connections.
  • Improves using a proxy auto-configuration (PAC) file.
  • Addresses an issue that may prevent files from being saved to an SMB server.
  • Improves printing to an SMB print queue.
  • Improves performance when connecting to a WebDAV server.
  • Includes RAW image compatibility for additional digital cameras
  • Improve the reliability of binding and logging into Active Directory accounts.

The OS X Lion v10.7.4 Update includes Safari 5.1.7, which contains stability improvements. It also includes a version check for the Adobe Flash plugin, so if you are using an outdated version of Flash, Safari will disable it.

  Fix a Sluggish Home Button  

Do you have an older iPod or iPhone that has a sluggish Home button? Does it take a couple taps to get it to register? It may just need to be recalibrated.

Before today, I didn’t even know you can do this; I’d always figured it was just a failing part. But thanks to an article on, I learned that you can recalibrate the button.

In order to do this, you need to open up one of the stock Apple apps (like Calendar, YouTube, Weather, Maps, etc.). Once the app is open, hold down the power button until the red “slide to power off” shows up, then immediately press and hold down the home button until the slider goes away. The app quits and you’re back at the home screen. There’s no guarantee that this will fix the problem, but depending on the issue, it may.

You can read the original article here.

Editor’s Note: I discovered that I had a bad habit of using the Home button to turn on my iPhone instead of using the Sleep/Wake button. As a result, my Home button was very sluggish and I was afraid it was starting to fail. Once I trained myself to use the Sleep/Wake button, I reduced the amount of use on the Home button dramatically, and in return, it’s much more responsive. In conjunction with this tip, I think any Home button seemingly “on the verge” can be saved.—KH

  Multiple Monitors Using Thunderbolt  

I remember when Windows 98 introduced the ability to support multiple displays. If you had a desktop system with room for multiple video cards, you could have multiple monitors. This was great for those of us who ran way too many applications at once—you could split your workspace between multiple desktops. Since that time, video chips have gotten more powerful and can now drive multiple displays with a single chip.

Apple’s iMac and MacBook lines feature an internal display as well as a port to connect an external display. The displays can be configured to run the same desktop on both (which comes in handy for presentations), or two different desktops. With a USB to VGA adapter, you can add a third display, but it won’t be very fast. The Mac mini has no built-in display, but has adapters for two external displays—Mini DisplayPort and HDMI—and could potentially drive a third display with the USB adapter.

With the introduction of Thunderbolt, it is now possible to have multiple displays on any system that has a Thunderbolt port. The 15” and 17” MacBook Pro systems can support two Thunderbolt displays connected in a chain. The 13” MacBook Pro can support a total of two displays, whether they be the internal plus one external, or two externals. (Plugging in a second external display disables the internal display.) The MacBook Air can drive one external display.

According to Apple, if you have multiple Thunderbolt devices, the Thunderbolt Display should go first, then any other devices like a hard drive should be connected to the Thunderbolt Display. Putting the display last in the chain affects data throughput of the other devices.

You can daisy chain a Thunderbolt display with an Apple CinemaDisplay, or any other display that uses a Mini DisplayPort connection. You just have to put some other Thunderbolt device between them. Connecting the CinemaDisplay directly to the Thunderbolt Display does not work.

  TT SPECIAL: Original iPads + Free Case = Deal  

Original iPads are still in stock, and we’ve paired the 64GB iPad + 3G (AT&T only) with a free Contour case this week! Buy alone or with the Mack 3-Year Extended Warranty for just $40 more—you’ll save a bundle and protect your investment.

Click on either special to see details.

   TT | Original iPad 64GB with 3G + Free Case
   TT | Save $25: Original iPad 64GB with 3G + Mack Warranty + Case
  TT SPECIAL: White MacBook Plus Mack Warranty  

TT | Save $40: MacBook 2.13GHz White (Used) + Mack Warranty + Case


The MacBook features an advanced NVIDIA GeForce 9400M graphics card, a 2.13GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor, and a Mack Extended Warranty that covers manufacturer’s defects for a full three years after the initial 90 days of ownership.