File-transfer app Forklift for Mac is on sale $29.99 -> $0.99

forklift

Forklift, a well-reviewed file-transfer app for the Mac is now on sale for just $0.99, down from the usual $29.99. The limited-time sale has propelled Forklift to be the number one top-paid app on the Mac App Store. Forklift supports file management and transfer for FTP, WebDav, Amazon S3, SMB, AFP and NIS. You might not use file transfer utilities as much now with Dropbox and iCloud taking over the role of remote file access, but Forklift is a useful file-transfer app to have when you need one.

Forklift on the Mac App Store

OS X Lion 10.7.4 includes RAW image compatibility for Canon 5D Mark III, Nikon D4, Nikon D800, Lumix GX-1 and Sony NEX-7

Hidden inside the latest OS X Lion 10.7.4 update is the system-level support of additional cameras for their RAW file formats. The new cameras include Canon 5D Mark III, Nikon D4, Nikon D800, Lumix GX-1 and Sony NEX-7. This is the full list:

  • Canon EOS 5D Mark III
  • Canon PowerShot G1 X
  • Nikon D4
  • Nikon D800
  • Panasonic LUMIX DMC-GX1
  • Panasonic LUMIX DMC-FZ35
  • Panasonic LUMIX DMC-FZ38
  • Samsung NX200
  • Sony Alpha NEX-7
  • Sony NEX-VG20

OS X Lion: Supported digital camera RAW formats

App of the week: Screens VNC

ScreensVNC

If you rely on VNC protocol to access your desktop computers remotely on your iPad or iPhone, then Screens VNC is as best an app you could get. Screens VNC is pricey at $19.90 for an iOS app, but the app gets it right by implementing features that make it easy to use touch based interface to maneuver the cursor on the desktop. Screens app is an universal app with iCloud and AirPlay integration. And a free Screens Connect helper app enable you to access your desktop from anywhere with an Internet connection.

Screens VNC on App Store

Apple released OS X Lion 10.7.4 and Safari 5.1.7

apple-osx-lion-10-7-4

Apple has released 10.7.4 update to OS X Lion that improves the stability, compatibility and security of OS X. This update includes the security fix to the recent password hole for File Vault users. OS X 10.7.4 update includes Safari 5.1.6. Separately, Apple has also released an update to Safari 5.1.7.

To update, select from Apple menu->Software Update. You will be prompted to download and update OS X 10.7.4. Once OS X update is completed and your Mac is rebooted, visit Software Update again to update Safari to the latest v5.1.7.

About the OS X Lion v10.7.4 Update

Tickets for WWDC is on sale. June 11-15 at Moscone Center San Francisco

wwdc-2012

Apple has announced the June 11-15 date for this year’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) at Moscone Center San Francisco. Conference passes are on sale now for $1599 and is restricted to members of Apple’s developer programs.

Tickets are expected to be sold out quickly and Apple is expected to focus on the coming release of iOS 6 and Mountain Lion for the more than 100 technical sessions in WWDC 2012.

Mountain Lion is the next release of OS X and is expected to be released in late summer. Apple has released Mountain Lion preview for its developers. iOS 6 is expected to be released together with the next iPhone and developers will get a glimpse of iOS 6 details for the first time in WWDC 2012. 

Apple’s announcement

WWDC website

Updated: Tickets have sold out in less than 2 hours. For comparison, WWDC tickets were selling out in eight days for WWDC 2010 and under 12 hours last year.

Apply Java patch to avoid being exploited by Flashback botnet

Apple just released a second update to Java for OS X, a mere two days after the first update. Dubbed Java for OS X 2012-001 and Java for OS X 2012-002, these two updates patched the Java hole that allows the spread of Flashback botnet. Apply the patch as soon as possible using the usual Software Update on your Mac.

Flashback botnet is said to affect as much as more than 500,000 Macs at the moment. When affected by Flashback trojan, a Mac will be used to hijack search traffic with modified webpages displayed in the web browser. If you suspect your Mac is affected, please follow F-Secure’s removal instructions via Terminal.

RAID does not protect your data completely

When shopping to expand the storage for your Mac, the common solution is to purchase an external storage where you connect via the USB or Firewire port of your Mac. The other option is NAS (Network Attached Storage), which is a storage device that you access via the network.

A NAS is actually a self-contained small computer build for storage purpose. There are many vendors offering NAS products such as Synology, Qnap and Netgear. Even Western Digital and Seagate now offers NAS storage. One of the advantage touted by NAS vendors is the RAID feature found on most NAS.

With proper RAID setup in NAS, you can prevent loss of data in the event of a harddisk failure. For example, if you have 3 units of 3TB harddisk setup in a RAID 5 configuration, you’ll get 6TB (3TBx2) of usable space, with the extra 2TB used for redundancy. With this setup, you are protected with one harddisk failure at a time. When one of the harddisk fails, your data is still there, and you can plug in a replacement to restore back to normal working condition. But when two harddisks fail at the same time, you data is gone.

One area that is often neglected by marketing literature of NAS product is that RAID does not protect against the failure of the NAS device itself. When your NAS device failed (not the hard disks), you have to pray that it can be repaired. There is no guarantee that moving your hard disks to a new NAS will work. There could be differences in firmware version or you can not find the same model replacement for your failed NAS. The risk of complete data loss is there.

Modern NAS has GUI interface that makes their management as easy as possible. NAS is an attractive option especially for sharing media among family members. It does however pays to understand the RAID feature in your NAS and the protection level of your setup. And NAS needs backup.