How to backup your student’s files

I would like remind all parents and students that we’ll be erasing and wiping the data off of the computers to prepare them for a fresh install for the next school year.

Please review the how-to videos linked to below if you want to archive and backup any of the data before turning in the laptops.

How to Backup Videos (CLICK TO VIEW)

- (5 videos covering Clean Up Your Mac, Backup to DVD media, Backup iTunes, Backup Movies, Backup iPhoto)

In the videos, I refer to using an external hard drive, if you don’t have an external hard drive you can find them at most electronic retail stores like Best Buy, Radio Shack, Fry’s or online at

iDevice Safety and Management

Notes for the iDevice (iPod, iPad, iPhone) Safety and Managment class at Salem Lutheran School.

Notes are found here:

Making the switch to Mac

I found a great article online that I wanted to pass along for those of you that are making the switch to Mac from Windows. If you have already made the switch you can learn some things in the series as well.

Switchers Guide: Moving from Windows to the Mac (source — article written by Harry McCracken)



Dropbox – Swiss Army Knife of Storage

Link to my quick overview of Dropbox. Hosted on my personal Dropbox account.

For more information go to,


USB Headsets – Setting up on the Mac

Click on the Tutorial link on the right and view a step by step how-to to get it setup right for use with Keynote, iMovie and other programs that you wish to record audio using the built in microphones on USB headsets.

Or click here.

1-to-1 Year Two: Lessons learned

I’m looking forward to year two of our 1-to-1 laptop initiative at Salem. Now that I have had some experience with managing over 450 laptops and desktops it has made me more aware of those things everyone needs to know and spend more time doing.

Back Me Up Please...

Back Me Up Please...

The first is backup. I can’t say it enough and you will all get tired of me talking about it this year, but I have horror and success stories to prove that it is very important. The great thing is backup is now no longer difficult and time consuming. Since moving to the Mac platform 100%, we are now able to discuss backup strategies that can be applied universally to all. I’m planning on releasing a couple of how-to videos on backup using your Macs soon.
The second is maintenance. I have now seen all the computers come back this summer and I’d say over half are in pretty bad shape. It is more than the physically worn and dirty condition, which is to be expected with white Macbooks. I’m seeing an chaotic mess of files with no organization.

Remember my previous post about cluttered desktops?

Remember my previous post about cluttered desktops?

I will also be looking to show you how to keep organized. If your are disorganized after only one year of work on your laptop imagine what it will look like in 2 more years?

Keep posted here over the next couple of months as I will give you the tools and ideas that will hopefully make your digital life more secure(backed up) and organized.

Managing my life with Evernote

evernoteI don’t know about you, but I find myself spending much of my time organizing and reorganizing notes either on my computer or on paper. I’m copying and pasting into stickies or to-do notes, but often times I’m in a place away from my computer, so I can’t recall that to-do list or information I needed to remember.

I’ve started using this awesome app called “Evernote” and it really has changed how I look at organizing my work and personal information. Go to to check out this unbelievable free tool to get yourself organized.

Evernote goes beyond the typical note and to-do applications that are on your computer. As they put it on their website,

Remember everything.

Evernote allows you to easily capture information in any environment using whatever device or platform you find most convenient, and makes this information accessible and searchable at any time, from anywhere. Did we mention that it’s free?

The fact is you can capture and input virutally anything: tasks and to-dos, notes and research, web pages, whiteboards, business cards, scribbles, snapshots, and even twitter messages. There are many was to get stuff into Evernote besides typing into a text window like drag-n-drop, web clipping, email, record audio and scan directly into Evernote.

The thing though that makes this app really powerful and flexible is that you can install this app on many different devices. The information you input & capture is instantly synchronized to all the different devices you have installed Evernote on. If you have a Windows PC, a Mac desktop or laptop, and a smartphone (iPhone, Windows Mobile more soon) you will be able to access all your stuff from any of these devices. You can even create a public notebook and share your stuff with others.

The uses of an app like this are limited only to your imagination, but you could use it as a study tool, recipe organizer, receipt tracker, and even a portable travel guide.

There is a paid version which removes any of the adds you see in the desktop version and allows you to sync and upload any file from your computer. Pretty cool and not too expensive at $45 a year.