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 : where did the “Personal Hotspot”-option go in iOS 10 ?

Question :

I just upgraded the iOS 10 on my iPhone, but now the Personal Hotspot option that I need to connect my MacBook to my iPhone’s mobile internet connection has vanished from my Settings… it used to be listed right below the Mobile Data setting, but now it’s gone…

What is wrong ? Where did it go ?

Answer :

For some unknown reason the update of iOS 10 seems to hide the Personal Hotspot option… it’s still there, but you have to dig a little deeper to get to it now…

Here’s how to get it back :

  • on your iPhone, go to Settings –> Mobile Data –> Personal Hotspot
  • now, if you switch it on there, it will work like before, and it will re-appear in the (first window) of Settings, directly below Mobile Data

It’s that simple, but it surely isn’t obvious…

enjoy !

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fixed : black screen when trying to take a photo in iOS

Question :

Lately, whenever I try to take a photo with my iPhone, all I get is a black screen.

I am using the pre-installed Camera-app in iOS.

How can I get this fixed ?

 

Answer :

There are two known software causes for this ‘black screen’-issue (so apart from hardware problems like broken iPhones) :

solution  #1 :

If you have just used your camera in another app (e.g. WhatsApp) and you then switched to the  standard iOS Camera.app, you might run into a black screen because the camera is still being claimed by the previous app…

The fix for this is easy : close down the iOS Camera.app and the other app that was using your camera, then re-open the iOS Camera.app ; to do so :

  1. double-clicking on the Menu-button below the screen (in the next view you’ll be able to browse through windows of all open apps)
  2. close all apps that are using your iPhone’s camera (by swiping the windows of those apps you want to close upward)
  3. then return to normal view by clicking the Menu-button once
  4. and when done, re-open the iOS Camera-app

solution #2 :

The black screen issue in Camera.app has been reported as a bug in earlier versions of iOS 9, so fixing it is simply done by updating your iPhone to the latest version of iOS 9 (or iOS 10).

To do so :

  1. on your iPhone, go to Settings –> General –> Software Update
  2. you will most likely see that you don’t have the latest version of iOS
  3. activate the update to the latest version of iOS

…that’s it 😉

enjoy !

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fixed : retrieve WiFi-password from iPhone [without hacking]

Question :

We have a password-protected WiFi-network at our local sports club. My iPhone automatically logs on when I’m near, but now my son is a member too and he would also like to connect to the WiFi when he’s around. Problem is, nobody seems to know the password… I’ve typed the password once long ago, but I didn’t write it down… Is there any way to see the password that is stored on my iPhone ?

 

Answer :

Yes, but you need a Mac and iCloud for it.

To be more precise : you can’t retrieve passwords on your iPhone (or iPad) the way you can on your Mac, by just opening the Keychain utility.

But there’s a way around this :

  1. on your iPhone, go to Settings –> iCloud
  2. there, make sure “Keychain” is set to “On”
  3. then, on your Mac, go to Apple [top left corner] –> System Preferences –> iCloud
  4. in the window that opens, make sure there’s a checkmark in front of “Keychain”
  5. then, on your Mac, click anywhere on your desktop
  6. then make sure “Finder” is displayed top left, next to the Apple-icon
  7. then press the [SHIFT]+[CMD]+[U] key-combo on your keyboard
  8. in the window that opens (named “Utilities”) double-click on the “Keychain Access” icon
  9. in the window that opens (named “Keychain Access”) select “iCloud” from the list on the left
  10. now, find the name of the WiFi-network you are interested in, and double-click on it
  11. in the window that opens (named like the WiFi-network), make sure the “Attributes”-tab is selected
  12. then, put a checkmark in front of “Show password:”
  13. in the (unnamed) window that opens it is said ‘Keychain Access want to use the “Local Items” keychain.’ typ your Administrator’s password and click “OK”
  14. now, the WiFi-password you are looking for will be displayed in the previous window (at “Show password:”)

…that’s it !

enjoy 😉

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fixed : can’t pair iPhone to Bluetooth JVC car stereo

Question :

I have paired my iPhones to my JVC KD-X250BT car stereo in the past, and this has worked great ever since. But when I recently switched to a new iPhone I had to upgrade the Bluetooth iPhone-pairing I couldn’t get it to work any longer… even with the manual at hand I couldn’t figure out how to do it… the manual doesn’t reflect the actual situation, and I can’t remember how I did the pairing previously…

What is the right procedure ?

 

Answer :

As you mentioned, the JVC KD-X250BT manual isn’t exact, so it isn’t very helpful…

So here are the right procedures for pairing and unpairing your iPhone(s) to and from the JVC KD-X250BT car stereo [ these directions might also work for other JVC car stereo sets ] :

paring your iPhone :

  • on your iPhone [ only if it has been paired before ] – in Settings under Bluetooth : delete JVC UNIT (*)
  • switch Bluetooth OFF
  • switch Bluetooth ON
  • in Bluetooth, at Devices : select JVC UNIT
  • on your car stereo – the text BT PAIRING is displayed
  • check if the code displayed on your iPhone is exactly the same as the code on your car stereo display
  • if so, – on your car stereo – press once on the MENU-button (the main big round tuning button) to accept
  • and – on your iPhone – click OK
  • now pairing is in progress : – on your car stereo – PAIRING is blinking on your display
  • when pairing is successful : – on your car stereo – your display says COMPLETED
  • now – on your iPhone – check in Settings under Bluetooth if JVC UNIT is registered as Connected ; if not, initiate the connection by selecting JVC UNIT from the list

…that’s it : you’re done 😉

 

unparing an iPhone that’s not around :

  • switch OFF Bluetooth on all iPhones (and other Bluetooth-devices around) in your car
  • on your car stereo –  press and hold the MENU-button (the main big round tuning button) until DEMO is displayed on screen
  • turn/dial the MENU-button until BLUETOOTH is displayed on screen, then click
  • then turn/dial to DELETE PAIR, then click
  • then turn/dial until the iPhone’s name is displayed, then click
  • then turn/dial to DELETE YES, then click
  • when DELETED is displayed, the unpairing is complete
  • to finish, switch Bluetooth back on in all devices that previously had it

…that’s it !

(*) unpairing an iPhone that you have nearby :

  • on your iPhone – go to Settings, then choose Bluetooth
  • in the list of paired Bluetooth-devices (MY DEVICES), click on the ‘info-icon’ at the right of JVC UNIT
  • in the screen that opens, click on ‘Forget This Device’ and wait…
  • when you’re automatically put back into the previous screen and the JVC UNIT is no longer in the ‘MY DEVICES’-list, you’re done…

…that’s it 😉

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fixed : old hard reset procedure doesn’t work on new iPhones with finger scan

Question :

I just encountered an error (or bug) in iOS forcing me to do a hard reset on my iPhone, but when I try the good-old reset-procedure by pressing both the MENU- and POWER-button simultaneously, there’s no reset… just a click-sound and a screenshot photo being taken…

What’s going on ?

 

Answer :

For all iPhones (and iPads) that still have the MENU-button (*) without fingerscan [ so all iPhones up until and including the iPhone 5 and 5c ], the procedure for a hard reset is :

  • make sure you have the PIN-code of your SIM-card at hand
  • press and hold the MENU- and POWER-buttons (*) of your iPhone/iPad simultaneously until the entire screen turns black and the Apple logo reappears
  • then release both buttons and wait for the screen to go back to normal
  • and when asked, enter the PIN-code to unlock your SIM-card

…that’s it

For all iPhones that have the new fingerscanning MENU-button (*) [ so all iPhones starting from the iPhone 5s and iPhone 6 and newer ], the above procedure does no longer work, so there is a new procedure for a hard reset :

  • make sure you have the PIN-code of your SIM-card at hand
  • press and hold the POWER-button (*) until the screen goes fuzzy and the ‘slide to power off’-slider appears
  • then release the POWER-button and slide the slider to the right to turn the iPhone off
  • wait for the screen to go black
  • then press and hold the POWER-button until the Apple logo (re)appears
  • then release the POWER-button and wait for the screen to go back to normal
  • and when asked, enter the PIN-code to unlock your SIM-card

UPDATE : since iOS 9.3 the ‘old’ procedure for a hard reset was re-introduced as an extra for the newer fingerscanning iPhones, so these can now also be reset by simultaneously pressing & holding the MENU- and POWER-buttons 

…that’s it

(*) the MENU-button is the button that is on the front side of your iPhone or iPad just below the screen :

  • on iPhones up until the iPhone 5 and 5c, the MENU-button has a ’rounded square’ icon on it
  • on iPhone 5s, iPhone 6 and newer, the MENU-button has no printing on it, but it has an (invisible) fingerscanning-sensor inside

…the POWER-button is the button that is used to turn the iPhone/iPad screen ON and OFF :

  • on iPhones up until the iPhone 5c and 5s, the POWER-button is on the top-side of the iPhone (just like it is on iPads)
  • on iPhone 6 and newer, the POWER-button is on the right-side of the iPhone

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test : is the HEMA 8pin Lightning-to-USB cable Apple Certified ?

Question :

I saw this good looking Lightning-to-USB cable for iPhone and iPad at my local (Dutch) HEMA store : HEMA has named it “8pin USB Charging Cable – extra long (2m)”.

Since it only costs €4 it’s far cheaper to have around as an extra than the original Apple Lightning-to-USB cables. But I’ve purchased some third party and white label Lightning-to-USB cables previously, and most cheaper ones all give the “This cable or accessory is not certified and may not work reliably with this iPhone.”-warning and I don’t want any new cables giving me that same error message.

How can I make sure that this HEMA Lightning-to-USB cable is ‘Apple Certified’ ?

Answer :

The HEMA Lightning-to-USB is available in various colors :

blue HEMA 8pin USB Charging Cable

orange HEMA 8pin USB Charging Cable

mint (pale green) HEMA 8pin USB Charging Cable

But there’s no way to be sure if it’s a 100% Apple Certified cable, since such a certification is not explicitly mentioned on the box…

The only things that are mentioned on the box are :

– for use with iOS-devices running up to iOS 7.1

– supported iOS-devices include the iPhone 5/5C/5S, iPad & iPad mini Retina, iPad mini, iPad Air, iPod nano, iPod Touch

…so basically, it’s a cable suited for any iOS-device that doesn’t have the ‘old’ broad (30pin) iPod-connector but the new (8pin) Lightning-connector, which would include the iPhone 6 & 6Plus also…

And what about iOS-devices running iOS 8 ?

That’s a “you won’t know until you try” situation :

From my own experience, I have not encountered the “This cable or accessory is not certified and may not work reliably with this iPhone.”-warning yet on these iOS-devices :

iPhone 5 (2012) & iOS 8.1

iPad mini (2012) & iOS 8.1

iPad mini 2 “Retina” (2013) & iOS 8.1

…that doesn’t mean that this cable will always be seen as a “Apple Certified”-cable at any time in the future however… there is mention that the “Not Certified”-warning did pop up in some situations, but the cause of those was not figured out… it might just have been an ill-produced sample, or it may have been incompatibility with iOS 8.0 only for some reason (which was then fixed with the release of iOS 8.1).

Conclusion : at this €4 price tag, this is a handy Lightning-to-USB cable to have one or two around as an extra, but keep in mind that this cable might not stay supported by Apple in the long run.

Note : if your iPhone’s (or iPad’s) battery is completely exhausted and it shuts itself down because of ‘lack of power’, using this cable to recharge will take notably longer before ‘minimum level to operate’ is achieved (might even take up to 60 seconds as opposed to the regular 10 seconds), probably because this cable is significantly longer (200cm as opposed to the regular 100cm)

😉

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