Tuesday, June 5, 2018

NOTHING is every EZ!

Technology comes with such amazing promises. But for me, nothing ever works as advertised. Nothing. Ever. And it makes me so tired.

I have a lot of digital photos. I have a lot of digital music. For storing and using these items, I use an iMac running OS X El Capitan as an operating system. And since my iMac is getting a little long in the tooth, that's the newest OS it will ever have. The machine itself has been updated to have 4GB of RAM and a 2 TB hard drive. But...I use Quicken for managing my meager finances, and Quicken and Apple don't really work well together, so I have a Win 10 PC for that, and I also use MS Office on that machine because that's what I'm used to -- and since I need the ability to print and scan for those tasks, my laser printer/scanner is attached to the Win 10 machine. Win 10 just updated and removed the "Homegroup" option. OS X needs Windows to be running Homegroup in order to access a printer shared from the Windows machine. Sigh...there goes that capability.

I am trying to find the best way to manage/keep/backup my music and photos from the Mac (I use Carbonite to back up the Windows data files.) I do back up the Mac to Time Machine, but that doesn't give me the secondary off-site backup for real security and it doesn't allow me to access the media files from the cloud with non-Apple devices.

A while back I bought a Lima device and a 2 TB USB drive to set up my own cloud for those media files -- the capabilities of Lima impressed me. But, after the Win 10 upgrade, that machine can't access the Lima device. Lima help tells me the Lima is damaged and I should buy a new one. But, but, but...it still works apparently flawlessly from all my other devices and worked from the Win 10 machine before the last Windows upgrade.

So I thought I'd try Amazon Cloud as I'm paying for Prime anyway. So I downloaded the Mac App and started the install routine. It failed and suggested I contact Amazon support.

I have an Apple TV which I want to use primarily to stream media files and "cast" audio and video from my apple devices to my home entertainment system. It's wireless and connects flawlessly to my home wifi network. Except...every time I want to use it I have to restart it before any of my other Apple devices will see it on the network. It's on the network. It has a valid IP address. My router shows it in the IP address table. It passes the wireless network test. But other Apple devices can't see it until I restart it. My Apple-centric son tells me I have a "Bonjour" problem. Yep. I'm about to tell Apple Bounjour for sure.

One of my long-term goals is to downsize to one computer system. Because of the utility of the Windows machine for the things I do so much of, that system seems likely to win the draw. But I want to get my photos and music files safely available in a standard file format and, preferably backed up both locally and on the cloud before I retire the Apple. And the Apple TV (I can do most of what I want with the $29 Roku in my entertainment system.) And then, what makes the iPad and iPhone want to hang around? For what we do, there may be other devices that work better.

But who am I kidding--it's not just Apple--all technology fails and frustrates me. My family buys and installs things that work perfectly from Apple, Ring, Nest, Microsoft, Brother, etc. They love their Google Drive and Amazon Drive and Spotify accounts. NONE of these things work as advertised for me. They just don't.

Nothing is ever EZ.

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