Macbook Pro

How can I get my two external monitors to work with my MacBook Pro?

Apple MacBook Pro

Episode 1128

Jerry from Phoenix AZ

Jerry has a MacBook Pro and bought a pair off brand Cinema displays. But the MacBook Pro can't power them. Leo says that MiniDisplay port will do it. But Apple has replaced that with Thunderbolt 2. He'll just need the right cable. Most monitors don't have Thunderbolt. DVI ports are a possibility, but he'll need an adapter to handle it. Monoprice is a good place to look.

Should I buy my daughter a MacBook Pro or MacBook Air for college?

Apple MacBook Pro

Episode 1122

Brian from Los Angeles, CA

Brian's daughter is going to law school and she has a five year old MacBook. Leo says it's time to upgrade, and the MacBook Air is a great option. Should he get the MacBook Air or MacBook Pro? The Air is light and thin, but the Pro has a Retina display and faster processor. The Air has better battery life, though. So it comes down to portability vs. screen quality.

Should I repair or replace my MacBook Pro?

MacBook Pro

Episode 1121

Jerry from Corona, CA

Jerry bought a MacBook Pro and the motherboard has gone bad. Is it worth taking to Apple to repair it? Leo says that Apple is the only place that can repair it. Is it worth it? Well, that depends. If it's not out of warranty, of course. But if it is, then he'll have to decide if the age of the laptop makes it worth laying down money to repair it when the cost may be as much as half or more what he paid for it. But if it's just out of warranty, then it probably is worth fixing.

What are the first things I should do after buying a MacBook Pro to protect my data?

Episode 1115

Jeff from Raleigh, NC

Leo says since most MacBook Pros come with SSDs now, it's important to turn on drive encryption right away. If he doesn't encrypt the drive from day one, some data could end up unencrypted on that drive. Turn on encryption before putting private data on it. The Mac comes with something called File Vault for encryption, which he can access right from the Mac's System Preferences. He just has to turn it on, and he won't even know it's running. The only reason to do this is in the event that his computer was stolen.

Should I buy a new Mac or upgrade the old one?

Apple MacBook Pro

Episode 1114

Bob from Danville, CN

Bob has a MacBook Pro from 2011 and wants to know if there's a new model coming out. Leo says that 2011 MacBook Pros were subject to a recall, so Bob should check that out first.

Should he upgrade his computer with an SSD? Leo says that's a good idea and he advises getting the Mercury SSD from MacSales.com. They're 1 to 1 compatible with the Mac. He should make sure his SATA Bus is fast enough, though.

What hard drive should I buy for my MacBook Pro?

Western Digital Scorpio Blue

Episode 1108

Ed from Crossville, TN

Ted is looking to replace his hard drive in his MacBook Pro. Leo has done that with all his laptops, replacing them with SSDs. It can be a challenge to replace the hard drive, depending on what model MacBook Pro he has. The modern MacBook Pros are a bit easier, although the screws are tiny and of difference lengths. Once he has opened it up, replacing the hard drive is pretty straight forward.

How can I reinstall OS X on a used MacBook Pro?

Episode 1103

Ryan from Maui, HI

Ryan got a used MacBook Pro, and he'd like to start over by erasing the disc. Leo says the good news is that with Apple, there's a recovery partition that will allow him to format the drive and reinstall the OS. He should reboot, and hold down the CMD-OPT-R. That'll do a clean install just like it came from the factory. Then he'll have to update it from there. Since Apple no longer charges for upgrades, it'll be easy to do it.

WWDC Keynote Is Tomorrow, June 2

Episode 1088

Tomorrow is WWDC (WorldWide Developer's Conference) as Tim Cook and his development posse will deliver a keynote that Leo thinks will feature software announcements of OS X, code named "Syrah." Some believe it'll be called "Yosemite," though. We'll also see a preview of iOS 8 which will be out in the fall. But there are some who believe there will be hardware announcements of new iMacs or Mac Pros. Maybe even a MacBook Air with retina display. Don't hold your breath for a new iPhone or iPad, as Apple moved it to a fall release schedule a few years ago.