How to: Fix Java Command-Line Tool Pop-Up on Mac OS

Truong Nguyen Mac Repair Insights

After upgrading to a newer version of Mac OS X (Yosemite 10.10 and El Capitan 10.11) or macOS (Sierra 10.12 and High Sierra 10.13), you may end up getting an annoying new pop-up message whenever you start your computer. It says, “To use the java command-line tool, you need to install a JDK.” It asks you to click “More Info” and visit the JDK (Java Developer Kit) download website. The reason you’re receiving this message is due to the removal of Java support in newer versions of OS X for security reasons. Older software such as Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator …

Apple 27" iMac VESA Mount Kit

Apple 27″ iMac VESA Mount Conversion

Truong Nguyen Mac Repair Insights

Are you considering the use of a more ergonomic desk for your iMac 27″ but realized the iMac stand stood in the way? In order to use a custom monitor arm for a 27″ iMac you need to covert the factory stand to a VESA mount. Apple sells this VESA mount as part model A1313.  The most challenging step is exposing the mounting screws on the stand. To install the VESA mount, follow these steps: Lay your 27″ iMac face down on a desk or table with a soft towel under the display. Position the iMac so that the bottom part …

crowed apple store

Is Mac Support on the way out at the Apple Store?

Truong Nguyen Mac Repair Insights

I haven’t been to an Apple store in a couple of years. My last experience wasn’t the best given how little Mac product presence there was. As the iPhone now generates nearly three-quarters of Apple’s revenue and profit, Macs clearly seem secondary to Apple. Recent news on the elimination of the Business- and Event-related positions have led many to believe Apple is ready to abandon the prosumer market. The lack of upgrades to the Mac Pro since late 2013 and the minimal performance upgrades to the latest MacBook Pro are clear indicators. Many wonder whether Apple is still committed to …

how to clean your Mac laptop properly

How to: Clean Your Mac Laptop Safely

Truong Nguyen Mac Repair Insights

If you’re like me, you use your Mac laptop every day. Sometimes you use it while grabbing a quick bite. You use it reading the headlines while enjoying your morning coffee. Your children use it to play games. You carry it around in a backpack or messenger bag and use it outdoors or at coffee shops. That’s the versatility of a laptop. And with all that use your Mac laptop is bound to get dirty. The keyboard starts to build up grime. Pet hair pokes out around keycaps. The screen becomes greasy, smudged and spotted with small drops of liquid. …

Tiny screws for unibody MacBook Pro

Keyboard Replacement on a Unibody MacBook Pro

Truong Nguyen Mac Repair Insights

Keyboard replacement on a unibody MacBook Pro is not a simple process. It involves taking every major component inside the laptop apart and removing many screws. Just how many screws are in a unibody MacBook Pro? The quick answer is around 100. The precise answer depends on the exact model year and screen size of your MacBook Pro. The one component with the highest concentration of screws is actually right under your finger tips. That keyboard you’re typing on is held together by at least 50 to 70 tiny screws. I recently replaced a keyboard on a unibody 15″ MacBook Pro (damaged due …

spinning drives next to standard ssd and Apple flash storage

Flash Storage Data Recovery from Mac Laptops

Truong Nguyen Mac Repair Insights

Data loss is one of those things you hope you never have to deal with. Macs are often perceived as well-built and extremely reliable. However the reality is that data loss can and does happen. It may be due to a failing hard drive, full hard drive or liquid spill. As we store more and more of valuable data on our computers, data recovery has become increasingly difficult with Apple’s introduction of flash storage hard drives to their laptop lineup. Let’s talk about the evolution of hard drives and why data recovery for Apple Mac laptops has become more challenging. As …

FirstTech World's first Apple computer specialist

FirstTech – World’s First Apple Computer Specialist

Truong Nguyen Mac Repair Insights

FirstTech was an important place to me. It was where I first explored Apple computers and began what is now a decade-long journey into Apple computer repair. FirstTech was not just the first Apple reseller in Minneapolis; it was the first Apple reseller anywhere, right here in Minnesota in 1977. In March 2014, FirstTech closed its door after nearly 37 years in business due to heightened competition. With retail, repair and managed service offerings alike, it had been a great alternative to larger box stores and even regular Apple retail stores. What I liked most about FirstTech was its unassuming, plain exterior …

2012 MacBook Pro Randomly Crashes, Shuts Down, Beeps

Truong Nguyen Mac Repair Insights

I’ve had several customers bring their 2012 Macbook Pro 13″ laptops to me with the same issue. Their MacBook Pro randomly crashes, shuts down or beeps on start up. Pressing more firmly on the casing next to the left side of the trackpad seems to cause these crashes. Here is video capture of this issue. It happens when increased pressure is applied beneath the keyboard on the left side of the laptop. This shows that Apple Hardware test and other software-based diagnostic tools are not always accurate. Apple Hardware Test ran a scan and confirmed no trouble was found. My …

Apple MacBook Pro Battery Replacement and Maintenance

Truong Nguyen Mac Repair Insights

If your Mac laptop isn’t staying charged as long as it used to or won’t hold a charge at all, it may be time to consider replacing the battery. When you click the battery icon on the top right of your desktop, you may see these warnings to service the battery or replace now: The life of your Macbook Pro battery is measured in cycle counts. One cycle count is using all of your battery’s power fully. You could use 75% of the battery one day, recharge it to 100% and then use 25% the next day. This would count …

iMac graphic card vs. desktop GPU

iMac Graphics Card GPU Overheating and Failure

Truong Nguyen Mac Repair Insights

There is a common flaw in the all-in-one iMac design. Due to internal space constraints, many iMacs develop an overheating graphics card issue that results in a black/blue/grey screen while the computer is powered on or a screen that shows vertical stripes or columns. Early symptoms are an iMac that fails to wake up from sleep or one that wakes up but only shows a black screen. In the iMac heat is transferred from the graphics card chipset via copper pipes. The copper pipes then transfer heat to the silver cooling fins and out the backside of the iMac through …

EU MacBook Pro keyboard layout

Mac Repair for Minnesotans… and International Travelers

Truong Nguyen Mac Repair Insights

Throughout the years I have had the pleasure of helping many different customers with their Mac repair needs. Most have been local customers here in Minnesota, while others have been traveling from around the world. I have helped clients visiting Minnesota from Norway, Sweden, Finland, China and Israel. It’s always fun to see the variations in Mac computers from around the world. Here are recent photos of a European model of the MacBook Pro. The keyboard layout is varied slightly. I’ve been able to coordinate both large and small repairs and upgrades for these clients. Some have had the misfortune …

Trackpad Won’t Click on your MacBook or MacBook Pro?

Truong Nguyen Mac Repair Insights

Trackpad won’t click? Does your MacBook’s trackpad look like these photos? Or even worse… It’s not a pretty sight. Your trackpad won’t click, can’t click, outright refuses to click! And you’re stuck. This is an issue I’ve worked on again and again. The culprit is not always obvious, especially when the problem first starts. The troublemaker is often no other than your battery. As your Mac laptop ages, the battery can degrade. The cells within the battery can begin to expand. One these unibody MacBook and MacBook Pro laptops, the battery is located beneath the trackpad, and as it expands it pushes up against the …

dust filled imac inside caused overheating

Dead Hard Drive Caused by Overheating due to Dirty iMac Innards

Truong Nguyen Mac Repair Insights

A couple weeks ago I got a call to assist with an Apple iMac desktop that failed to boot into Mac OS X. A quick assessment over the phone gave me enough information to know it’s likely a dead hard drive issue which prevents the iMac from booting and stuck at the flashing question mark folder screen. I took the iMac home attempting to retrieve the data on it and to replace the dead hard drive with a new one. It’s worth mentioning this iMac was not even two years old – it is very unusual for a hard drive to die in such short …