Thoughtful, detailed coverage of the Mac, iPhone, and iPad, plus the best-selling Take Control ebooks.

 

 

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Option-Click AirPort Menu for Network Details

If you hold down the Option key while clicking the AirPort menu in Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard, you'll see not just the names of nearby Wi-Fi networks, but additional details about the selected network. Details include the MAC address of the network, the channel used by the base station, the signal strength (a negative number; the closer to zero it is, the stronger the signal), and the transmit rate in megabits per second showing actual network throughput. If you hover the cursor over the name of a network to which you're not connected, a little yellow pop-up shows the signal strength and type of encryption.

 
 

Apple Issues Fix for MacBook Shutdowns

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No product is ever perfect, even Apple's wildly successful MacBook line. A number of vocal MacBook owners have been experiencing annoying random shutdowns, and fortunately, according to Apple, a fix is finally at hand. MacBook SMC Firmware Update 1.1 promises to fix the problem by adjusting the MacBook's internal monitoring system. Apple recommends the 417K download for all owners of MacBooks, even those units that have already gone through a repair process. You need to be running at least Mac OS X 10.4.7. And because this is a firmware update, remember to back up your data beforehand in case something goes wrong.

 

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