fixed : Google Chromecast-ing option not showing up

Question :

I have some Chromecast devices (a Google Chromecast, a Google Nest Hub, a Google Home Mini, etc.) that I want to stream to from my iPhone. But even though te Apple AirPlay streaming option shows up, the Google Chromecast option only shows up in some of my iPhone apps and not in the other ones : in my case I can stream to Google Chromecast devices from the Spotify and Netflix iOS-apps, and not from Disney+, AmazonPrime and ZiggoGo…

What is wrong ? How can I solve this ?

Answer :

Even though AirPlay is always available on iOS/iPadOS and Apple AirPlay devices are automatically detected by default, the Google Chromecast option is turned off by default.

Since you can stream to some Chromecast-able devices and not to others, you seem to have turned on the option to do so per app individually. Yes, you need to switch on the Chromecast-ing option for each individual iOS/iPadOS-app…

To do so, do this :

  • make sure that your iPhone/iPad is connected to the the same WiFi network that the Chromecast-device(s) that you want to cast to is/are on
  • open the Settings.app in iOS/iPadOS
  • in the Settings page that opens, scroll down to Privacy (the blue icon with the white hand) and click on it
  • in the Privacy page that opens, click on Local Network (the blue icon with the white globe outline)
  • in the Local Network page that opens, scroll down to the app(s) that you need and set it’s slider to ON (slide to right will make the slider green and turn the option ON)
    • your apps are now able to discover the Chromecast devices that are on the same WiFi network
  • now, turn on the app that you want to stream from and the Chromecast-icon should appear (note that in most cases the AirPlay-icon will immediately appear and the Chromecast-icon will be added with a slight delay)
  • then start the video (or audio) you want to play and click on the Chromecast-icon to select the Chromecast-able device you want to stream to

…that’s it !

enjoy πŸ˜‰

fixed : Two-sided printing in MS Word for Mac

Question :

I usually work in Apple’s Pages.app to do my text editing, but now someone sent me a school document that was made in MS Word. It opens just fine in Word for Mac, but when I want to print, I can’t find the “Two-sided printing” option…

How can I do Two-sided printing in Word for Mac ?

Answer :

As always, the solution is simple, you just have to know where to look and what to look for…

…anyway, here’s how-to do this in Word 16 (2021) :

Note : in older versions it is similar, but sometimes slightly different (just one of those things to know is that “Two-sided printing” is called “Duplex printing” on Windows and therefore also in older versions of MS Office for Mac…)

  • open the document in Word for Mac
  • press the [CMD] + [P] key combo on your keyboard to open the Print window ( or goto Word > File > Print )
  • click on “Copies & Pages” and choose “Layout” from the pulldown menu
  • in the Layout settings view, see that “Two-Sided” is listed, with the option to choose “Long Edge Binding” (for portrait mode documents) and “Short Edge Binding” (for landscape mode documents)
  • > note that if “Two-Sided” is not listed here, your printer doesn’t have the option to print two-sided automatically, and you will have to do the two-sided printing manually [see below]

That’s it !

If your printer can’t do two-sided printing automatically, you can do this to get two-sided printing manually :

  • open the document in Word for Mac
  • press the [CMD] + [P] key combo on your keyboard to open the Print window ( or goto Word > File > Print )
  • click on “Copies & Pages” and choose “Microsoft Word” from the pulldown menu
  • in the Microsoft Word settings view, set “Print:” to “Even pages only”
  • then go back to “Copies & Pages” and at “Pages:” set both “From:” and “To:” to 1 and click the Print button
  • when your print is ready, draw a huge arrow on the back of the printed page pointing upward like the text on the front side
  • then put the page in the printer’s feeder drawer and make sure the arrow you have drawn on it is on the upside and pointing into the printer drawer and close the printer drawer
  • then click on “Copies & Pages” and choose “Microsoft Word” from the pulldown menu
  • in the Microsoft Word settings view, set “Print:” to “Even pages only”
  • then go back to “Copies & Pages” and at “Pages:” set both “From:” and “To:” to 1 and click the Print button
  • now look at the printed page that comes out and figure out how to put the pages in after having them printed on one side (make sure you have this correct before proceeding ; if you can’t get your head around this, just redo the above steps and print a new testpage)
  • now, get ready to print the entire document :
  • press the [CMD] + [P] key combo on your keyboard to open the Print window ( or goto Word > File > Print )
  • click on “Copies & Pages” and choose “Microsoft Word” from the pulldown menu
  • in the Microsoft Word settings view, set “Print:” to “Even pages only”
  • then go back to “Copies & Pages” and at “Pages:” select “All”
  • then wait for all even pages to print
  • when done, flip over the bulk of printed paper the way you figured out to be right (using your test page as a reference) and put it back in the printing drawer
  • make sure that not only the orientation is correct, but that the first page is on top and the last page is at the bottom also
  • click on “Copies & Pages” and choose “Microsoft Word” from the pulldown menu
  • in the Microsoft Word settings view, set “Print:” to “Odd pages only”
  • then go back to “Copies & Pages” and at “Pages:” select “All”
  • then wait for all odd pages to print
  • …now check if your document is printed correctly on both sides !
  • if not… you have gotten your page flipping incorrect… too bad… you’ll have to redo from start…

That’s it !

enjoy πŸ˜‰

fixed : “This block has encountered an error and cannot be previewed” error in WordPress Dashboard

Question :

My WordPress.com website has been shifted to the revamped version of the WordPress Dashboard, but now, when I am trying to re-edit posts from before September 2020, I can only see the post’s title in the edit page… the body text is replaced by an error message saying “This block has encountered an error and cannot be previewed”.

What can I do to fix this ?

Answer :

The underlying problem is not exactly clear, but the solution is rather simple :

  • make sure you are running the latest version of macOS, if not : upgrade to the latest version of macOS
  • make sure you are running the latest version of Safari (or the browser you are using), if not : upgade to the latest version
  • open Safari
  • goto “View” (in the top menu bar)
  • click on “Reload without Content Blockers” (from the pulldown menu)
    • Note : the regular β€œReload Page (CMD+R)” will NOT solve the problem !

That’s it !

enjoy πŸ˜‰

fixed : rotate page orientation in MS Excel ( portrait / landscape )

Question :

I have to print (part of) an Excel sheet that has few lines and al lot of columns (so it’s not that height, but rather broad), so I want to print on a landscape-ed paper.

In regular macOS apps (like Preview, Keynote, etc.) I would do this by pressing [CMD]+[P] on my keyboard, so the printing window opens and I can switch the “Preview/Keynote/etc.”-dial to “Page Attributes”, so I can set the Paper Size (e.g. A4 or US Letter) and the Orientation (Portrait or Landscape).

If I do this in MS Excel, I get a similar printing window, but if I click the “Excel”-dial, the list of options doesn’t have “Page Attributes” listed… and I non of the other available options seems to have a setting to change the page orientation either…

Note : Yes, I know that Apple’s counterpart Numbers.app has a different type of printing window with the Page Orientation option listed near the top-right, but that’s to different from what I’m seeing in Excel that I see no way to lear in Numbers.app what I want to do in Excel…

What am I doing wrong ?

Answer :

Yes, Excel is different from the regular macOS-apps regarding setting the page orientation (and it’s even more different from it’s competitor Numbers.app), but the option is hidden in plain sight !

To change the page orientation in Excel, press the [ALT]+[P] key-combo, and then the print window opens, just leave the Excel-dial as-is and look a little below it… there you will see the options “Print”, “Margins” and “Orientation”… That’s it !

Note : there is another option to set the page orientation in Excel : goto the top menu-bar, click on “File” (top-left) and from the pull-down menu select “Page Setup” (just above “Print”) and when the “Page Setup” window opens, make sure the “Page”-tab is selected and at “Orientation” you will see radio buttons for “Portraid” and “Landscape”… That’s it !

enjoy πŸ˜‰

fixed : put printing & scanning shortcuts in the Dock

Question :

Whenever I need to scan (or sometimes even to print) anything, I need to go into System Preferences, then Printers & Scanners, then click Open Scanner…

Isn’t there a one-click solution to do this ?

Answer :

Yes there is.

Back in the days of MacOSX there used to be an option for this called “Desktop Printer” : that would put a shortcut-link of your printer on the Desktop. And you could do the same for your scanner.

Nowadays, for some reason, this option is gone, and no easy alternative is given by macOS… so you will have to create some thing yourself… the easiest way is to put both your Printer’s and your Scanner’s icon in the Dock. To do so, do this :

  • go to Apple menu (Apple-icon top-left in the top menu bar)
  • when the pulldown menu appears, select “System Preferences”
  • in the window that opens, click “Printers & Scanners”
    • if there is no such option, click on the raster-icon (top-center) first and it will appear
  • in the window that opens, click on your scanner (in the list on the left)
    • if your scanner is not yet in the list, add it first by clicking the Plus-icon at the bottom and following the on-screen instructions
  • now your scanner opens in the main part of the screen (on the right)
  • click the “Open scanner” button
  • now, the Scanner-window will open, and the scanner’s icon will appear in the Dock
  • CTRL-click (right mouse button) on the Scanner’s icon in the Dock
  • from the popup-menu, select “Options”, then “Keep in Dock”
  • now, the scanner’s icon will be moved to the left and it will stay in the Dock even after you close the scanner software
  • so, next time you want to scan anything, just click on the scanner’s icon in the Dock to open the scanner software

    That’s it !

Note : creating a direct link icon in the Dock for your printer can be done in the same way

enjoy πŸ˜‰

fixed : “Scanner reported an error” when starting scanner

Question :

My Canon CanoScan 5600F is scanning great, even after all those years. The only problem I’m encountering with my new Mac is that I get a “Scanner reported an error” message when I try to start it from the shortlink (alias) I have in my Dock.

The exact error message is : “Scanner reported an error Cannot communicate with scanner for these reasons: – Scanner is turned off. – USB cable is disconnected. Please check and try again.” But the USB cable is connected properly and the scanner is turned on, so that can’t be the problem.

What can I do to fix this ?

Answer :

This problem was introduced some years ago, possibly somewhere within the shift from OSX to macOS. It seems to have to to with the start-up sequence of macOS’s build-in scanning software or the scanner going into some sleep mode. The solution is simple, even though it is more of a workaround than an actual fix. So if you run into this problem, do this :

  • turn the scanner off using the ON/OFF-switch on the outside of the scanner (the physical hardware button)
  • then, click the blue OK-button in the “Scanner reported an error” window
  • then, close the “Scanner” window by clicking the red dot button top-left
  • then, open the Scanner software again…
  • now, turn the scanner back on using the ON/OFF-switch on the outside of the scanner (the physical hardware button)
  • now the scanner should load the scan preview automatically (as if you had clicked the Overview-button)
  • just make sure the scan area hasn’t been reset, so…
    • …either uncheck “Use Custom Size” and make sure “size” is “A4” (or anything suitable)
    • …or manually line out the scan area in the preview

That’s it !

enjoy πŸ˜‰