If you’re using an Apple Mac computer, you may have observed that the fantastic backup system Time Machine, may run slowly. This is especially noticeable when you are doing the very first backup (when it has to backup the entire system).
I was frustrated by this a while ago when I purchased a new hard drive to do my backup’s on.
After a bit of digging, I found that time machine’s performance is throttled so as not to impact system performance.
There is a way to remove performance throttling using a system control statement.
If you use the sysctl command to set this to 0 (zero) then time machine will not be throttled. If it’s set to 1 (one), it will be throttled.
I created a little script called ‘speedup-timemachine’ that lets me turn the option on and off.
‘speedup-timemachine on’ will remove the throttling.
‘speedup-timemachine off’ will return the throttling.
Below is the script. Just copy the script, paste it into a text editor, save the script to a location on the path, and make it executable (chmod a+x scriptfile).
It’s been more than a year since we got the original iPhones … so when Apple announced the new hardware version for the iPhone, I figured it was probably worth getting. The new version has a lot of features that I wanted … and, frankly, thought should have been in the first version.
Ok, I got both iPhones upgraded to the 2.0 version of the iPhone OS.
Initially, I had some trepidation about upgrading a day early … and my feeling seemed to be valid when a co-worker tried to upgrade his phone and had a bunch of problems. He kept getting an “Unknown error (6)” message. I don’t know if he actually got his upgraded.
Regardless, I decided to throw caution to the wind and upgrade my phone anyways. Luckily, it worked without a single hitch.
When I got home from work, I proceeded to upgrade Ginny’s phone. This, of course, is where I ran into problems.
I started the upgrade process by first upgrading her iTunes to 7.7. That worked without any problems. Then I proceeded to upgrade her phone.
Initially it was going OK … then I got an “Unknown error (10)” message. Figuring that I would just restore the phone to it’s previous OS version, I tried the restore option … but when I did this I got an “Unknow error (20)” message. Tried a few more times and got the same message. This is not good.
I Googled around a bit and found a thread in the Apple support forum that said that, if I pressed Option (shift in Windows context) and clicked the restore button, I could ‘Recover’ to the 2.0 firmware. Luckily this worked.
About 20 minutes later I had Ginny’s iPhone working fine.
Five minutes after that, I we were both playing with the “Phone Saber” application.
We bit the bullet … we got iPhones. Our Verizon cell phone contract has been up for quite a while and they’ve been bugging us to re-up for a new two year contract … but I haven’t been super happy with the service and phones, so we started thinking about what other provider and phone’s would be a suitable substitute.
My co-worker Jerome has the iPhone and is very happy to show it off. Even on the first release I have to admit, it was pretty cool. The interface was nice, the features were nice, and the sound quality wasn’t bad at all.
The only things I really didn’t like at the get go was the fact that you were tied to AT&T and the battery wasn’t replaceable.
After mulling our alternatives, we decided to go for it. Both Ginny and I got the 8gb model. We were originally thinking about the 16gb model, but the Apple store didn’t have any in stock and we figured, since we only used a fraction of our 4gb iPods, it wasn’t that big a deal.
A few observations …
It doesn’t like the fact that I use self signed certs on my mail server. I’ll probably have to bite the bullet and get a proper cert.
I haven’t found any ability to select which folders I show in my IMAP mail account. Wish I could, as I really only care about a handful on an ongoing basis.
One feature that’s missing, and was almost a deal breaker, was the lack of voice command dialing. On my old moto phone I could just tell it “Call James Rich Mobile” and it would call James Rich’s cell phone (in my address book). Nice for talking while driving.
As one would expect from an Apple product, the user interface is slick. The screen is a bit over sensitive though. I suspect it’s just something to get used to.
The pseudo GPS functionality is very cool … I really want to figure out how they do it, because it was able to figure out where was I better than my GPS can.
Porting of both the phone numbers on my Verizon account was smooth and fast. It only took 30 minutes to complete. I’m going to verify that Verizon cancels my account just in case.
One annoyance, unrelated to the iPhone itself, was the fact that it seems kind of hard to find accessories at stores that don’t actually sell the iPhone. Woodfield mall, and the Apple store, were both very crowded … and both Ginny and I were in a hurry to escape (yeah, so we could play with the new toys) … so we skipped getting protective skins for the new phones. We stopped at Best Buy on the way home, but they only had 2 or 3 skins & cases for the iPhone. I’ll probably stop at Frys on my way home tomorrow to pick something up.
I’m kind of interested to see what the SDK is all about … I’ve got some ideas for apps that could be fun.