fixed : use old iPad as an extra screen for your Mac (or PC)

Question :

Since we are working from home a lot (and the children are home schooling), and we have several old iPads and iPhones lying around gathering dust, we were wondering if it would be possible to use them as second screens on our Macs and Windows PCs to make our work and homework easier by being able to do this (and more) :

  • manage our music playlist (iTunes, Apple Music, Spotify) on our old iPad/iPhone whilst running  MS Office on our Mac/PC without switching apps
  • use our old iPad/iPhone’s touchscreen to put a signature under a PDF-document whilst typing it on our Mac/PC
  • use our old iPad/iPhone as a drawing tablet for our Mac/PC
  • videochat or view an online presentation onour Mac/PC whilst making notes on our old iPad/iPhone using a full-size keyboard (and easily swapping the two around when needed)

We noticed Apple has introduced this great feature called Sidecar that enables you to use your iPad (or iPhone) as a second screen for your Mac. But when I looked at the Sidecar requirements on the Apple website, I found that our older iPads/iPhones aren’t supported.

Is there any way to use Sidecar (or something similar) on our old iPads/iPhones ?

 

Answer :

Yes, even though you cannot use Sidecar on any unsupported iPad, iPhone or Mac, there is an alternative that works just as great for any old iPad (or iPhone) and is not limited to a Mac, but does support Windows PCs also… and best of all : it’s FREE.

This is ideal for working from home and home schooling since you can do all this (and more) :

  • manage your music playlist (iTunes, Apple Music, Spotify) on your iPad whilst running  MS Office on your Mac/PC without switching apps
  • use your iPad/iPhone’s touchscreen to put a signature under a PDF-document whilst typing it on your Mac/PC
  • use your iPad/iPhone as a drawing tablet for your Mac/PC
  • videochat or view an online presentation on my Mac/PC whilst making notes on my iPad/iPhone using a full-size keyboard (and easily swapping the two around when needed)

This FREE alternative for Apple Sidecar is Splashtop Wired XDisplay. It enables you to use any iPad/iPhone running iOS 7 or newer as a second or third (touch)screen for any Mac running OSX 10.9 Mavericks (or PC running Windows 7) or newer.

This means that all these iPhone / iPad / Mac models are supported :

  • iPhone 4 or newer
  • iPad 2 or newer
  • any iPad mini
  • any iPad Air
  • any iPad Pro
  • any aluminum iMac (iMac “Mid 2007” or newer)
  • any iMac Pro
  • Mac mini “Early 2009” or newer
  • Mac Pro “Early 2008” or newer
  • white MacBook “Early 2009” or newer
  • any aluminum MacBook
  • MacBook Air “Late 2008” or newer (2nd gen MacBook Air or newer)
  • MacBook Pro “Mid 2007” or newer

To install, do this :

  • install the Splashtop Wired XDisplay app on you Mac/PC
    • you can download Splashtop Wired XDisplay for Mac or Windows here
  • install iTunes on your PC if you have done so yet
    • you can download iTunes for Windows here
    • on a Mac you don’t need additional software for your iPad/iPhone to be recognized
  • install Splashtop Wired XDisplay on your iPad/iPhone
    • you can download Splashtop Wired XDisplay for iPhone here
    • you can download Splashtop Wired XDisplay for iPad here
  • then, plug your iPad/iPhone’s USB-cable into your Mac/PC
  • then run the Splashtop Wired XDisplay app on your Mac/PC
  • then run the Splashtop Wired XDisplay app on your iPad/iPhone
  • then goto the Settings on your Mac/PC, find the Screen Settings and arrange your screens the way you like
    • you can choose “Mirror Screen” to see exactly the same on your MAc/PC and your iPad/iPhone
    • you can choose “Extend Screen” to arrange the iPad/iPhone as an add-on for your desktop
    • if you already have a second screen attached to your Mac/PC, you can use your iPad/iPhone as an additional third screen also

That’s it !

enjoy 😉

fixed : quick way to make hidden files visible on macOS

Question :

I sometimes need to view the invisible files on my Mac. I know I can do this using the Terminal.app, but isn’t there an easier way to do this ?

 

Answer :

To turn on the ‘Hidden File Viewer’ (or ‘Invisible File Viewer’) mode in MacOSX, you could use the command line in Terminal.app or you could use little apps named something like ‘Hidden File Viewer’ or similar.

In macOS 10.12 Sierra and newer, there is a far simpler way to do this :

  • press the [SHIFT] + [CMD] + [.] key-combo on your keyboard

Using this key-combo, you can switch the visibility of invisible files ON or OFF.

That’s it !

enjoy 😉

fixed : easiest way to hide & unhide hidden files on your Mac

Question :

Yesterday my text editor app crashed, and even though I had automatic saving turned on, I can’t find the automatically saved latest version anywhere…

I expect I might find it in the hidden files and folders on my Mac.

What is the best app to hide (and unhide) hidden files on my Mac ?

( Note : I know this can be done using the Terminal, but I’m very hesitant towards using the Terminal.app )

 

Answer :

When your Mac is running macOS 10.12 Sierra or newer, you don’t need Terminal.app or any other application to toggle between showing and hiding hidden files, you can now use a simple key-combo to do this :

simultaniously typ [SHIFT] + [CMD] + [.] to (un)hide invisible files

That’s it !

enjoy 😉

 

Note #1 : this is even the simplest and quickest way to open the User’s Library folder.

Note #2 : if your Mac is running MacOSX 10.11 El_Capitan or older, you cannot use this key combo, so you’ll need to use an application like HideSwitch.app or ShowHiddenFiles.app or Funter.app (or the Terminal.app) to hide/unhide invisible files

 

fixed : can’t connect new iPhone (iOS 12) to MacBook Air Late 2010

Question :

I have a new iPhone 8 (running iOS 12) and I want to connect it to iTunes on my MacBook Air (Late 2010), but when I connect them using the Lightning-to-USB-cable I get an error message saying the software on my Mac should be updated.

I found that I had OSX 10.10 Yosemite installed, so I used the Mac AppStore-app to upgrade to macOS 10.13 High_Sierra. That went smoothly, so I also installed all available updates for my apps from the Mac AppStore. Then, I ran into a strange error : I can’t upgrade to the newest version of iMovie because my version of macOS doesn’t meet the minimal system requirements…

I also ran iTunes, but even now my iPhone 8 isn’t recognised when I connect it…

I found that for some reason macOS 10.13.4 is installed, and not 10.13.6, but still : Mac AppStore says “no updates available”…

Is my MacBook Air late2010 not meeting the minimal system requirements for macOS 10.13.6 for some reason ?

I looked up my MacBook Air late 2010 in MacTracker, and found that is should be able to run macOS 10.13.6 so why won’t it install ?

How can I fix this ?

 

Answer :

For reasons unknown, you need to upgrade your MacBook Air to macOS 10.13.5 manually using this download :

download macOS 10.13.5 upgrade

And only after macOS 10.13.5 is installed, you can manually upgrade to macOS 10.13.6 using this download (this is an incremental upgrade, not a combo upgrade) :

download macOS 10.13.6 upgrade

After macOS 10.13.6 is installed, you should be able to update to the latest versions of iMovie and iTunes via the Mac AppStore.

If iTunes won’t update, you need to (re)install it manually, using this download :

download iTunes

After installing the latest version of iTunes, connect your iPhone to your Mac using a Lighting-to-USB-cable. Now, an extra update will be downloaded, which will put an extra Devices-button in the iTunes and your iPhone will be recognised in iTunes.

That’s it !

enjoy 😉