As we already blogged some time ago, we had severe overheating issues and frequent kernel panics with our early 2011 models of the MacBook Pro Core-i7 quad. Still, after the updates there are crashes from time to time - the early 2011 models are far away from being stable machines to use for serious work.
After days of trying to figure out what is really the issue, we found that most of the times device drivers or other third party apps are mostly causing the crashes - but also CPU-intensive apps such as games sometimes bring the system down. Solution? Yes, there is one: change your system to a 32bit Kernel.
1) The bootup way (temporary solution, great for testing)
If you just want to test if changing to 32bit changes anything, you can reboot your mac and hold down the "3" and "2" keys as soon as you hit the power button. This boots up your Apple in 32bit mode temporarily. If the system
2) The Terminal Way (see the Apple Support Document for more information)
sudo systemsetup -setkernelbootarchitecture i386
if you need to change your system back to normal for any case, you can enter the following command into Terminal.app:
sudo systemsetup -setkernelbootarchitecture x86_64
Just to make it clear: your applications will still run in 64bit mode, you can make sure this is the case by hitting cmd+i on the application icon and see if "Open in 32-bit mode" is checked. See this article from simplehelp with details and images on 32-bit mode. So why should I care then, you might ask: since drivers and 3rd party apps and extensions that are loaded on startup are most of the time the issue with system freezes and hangs, changing to a 32bit kernel did the trick for us and now we have a stable 2011 MBP quad-core system.
[UPDATE] 10.6.8 seems to work with 64bit kernel much more stable than 10.6.7. Still, to be on the safe side we are using the 32bit kernel and had no freezes yet.
If you are like me, you have tons of external Hard Drives and other devices such as card readers that create desktop cable clutter. In my case, I cannot stand the situation of loose cables lying around and i always spend up to half an hour per day re-sorting the order on my office desktop.
What are current options and solutions for de-cluttering the desktop from wires?
1. Henge Docks (for Apple MacBook Pro and Macbook owners)
Pro: saves lots of space
Con: you lose an external extra-screen. I am using the extra notebook screen for debug-logs or reading email, so that's a no-go for me with the Henge Dock.
While the Henge Dock saves you lots of space on the office desktop, you also lose "virtual" space since you cannot use the internal notebook screen as extended desktop. The Henge Dock is cheap though, so I can recommend it for people that don't care about the second virtual desktop.
It looks like if you have a SPECK case mounted on your MacBook Pro, you can not use the Henge Dock. Keep that in mind.
Pro: really de-clutters the desktop. Second "virtual" desktop still usable.
I really like the idea of the small cable clips that are mounted on the table to sort different important cables and to make them instantly accessible. I just ordered eight of those clips (in different colors) to de-clutter my "cable salad".
Con: not so much de-cluttering as can be possible, since the cables are still visible (to some extent)
Not really for desktop cable de-cluttering, this can hide your power strip (powerboard) and additionally protect it from accidental soda-spilling.
This solution from IKEA works for other non-Ikea tables as well. It not only helps you completely hide all the power strips, you can also hide other chargers back there. Works best together with the Blue Lounge Design CableDrop Cable Management System
The DIY Home Robot Dog Cable Concentrator Box is a funny piece of geek-humor in the shape of a wooden dog. It not only de-clutters, but also makes your desktop an eye-catcher.
7. DIY your own charging boxes!
The IKEA charging box is a very simple tutorial from instructables, so you can build a charging box for all your devices that need power (smartphones, iPod, iPad, iPhone, whatever)
unpluggd has more on that topic: Affordable Cord and Cable Guidance Solutions, which also covers DIY Cable Management Systems. Well worth a read!
If you created your own solutions or maybe have other hints on good de-cluttering pieces, let us know in the comments.