Adding Reliable USB Ports To a MacBook Retina

November 25th, 2014 No Comments »

We all have figured out that the two built in USB 3 ports on our Macbook Retina’s are quite inadequate.  If we could add a USB hub to the system that actually worked it would not be a problem.  My experience is that almost anything I try to add to my USB Hub does not work and from what I read on the forums, I’m not alone.  It cost me about $150 on amazon but now I’ve got 3 more super reliable USB ports thanks to the addition of this belkin docking stations.

 

My setup is as follows:

  • Macbook Retina (when docked)
  • Thunderbolt #1 –> Belkin Thunderbolt –>  Lacie Hard Drive –> Monitor #1 (1280×1024)
  • Thunderbolt #2 –> Monitor #2 (2560×1600)
  • HDMI –> Asus 4K Monitor

From The Belkin Thunderbolt Dock

  • USB Poscaster Microphone
  • Jabra PRO Headset
  • Gig Ethernet (built in)
  • Lowcost USB Host –> Mouse and Keyboard

VMWare Fusion Woes and Repairs

April 27th, 2013 No Comments »

I’ve been using VMWare Fusion and OS X 10.8.3 for a while now.  I’ve got the big Retina (768GB SSD, 16GB Ram, 2.6Ghz).  Still, with two cores set to windows 8 pro, I get hanging when I try and go back and forth between the VM (full screen, two monitors) and OS X.

I’ve had a VMWare support call going for about 2 weeks now. They have looked at my logs, tried a bunch of stuff but nothing helps. It still gets these 5 to 10 second pauses about 10 times a day at least (I usually stay on the windows side but I still get pauses sometimes there).

I recently took my Retina to a mac store to have them run diag’s. Who knows, maybe it was broken.  They ran there in store diags and discovered the camera was broken but no errors on anything else.

They suggested I part with my Retina for 3 to 7 days and they would send it to the repair center (free of course) and the repair center would replace the broken camera as well as run better diags on the components.

So, I bought a new Retina on Craigs List (2.8GHz, 500GB, 16GBRam) so I could keep my work life going (can’t be without a main computer and I do everything on my Retina).  One nice thing is that I could test whether my WinClone bootcamp partition backup was really working (yes it does).

Four days later, I get it back from Apple.  They replaced the screen, all the memory and the motherboard.

Still though, same problem with VMWare Fusion hanging.

At least my camera works now (and time to sell the 1 week old faster Retina, but I have to say I could not tell a difference in the speed.  I certainly did miss the hard disk size though).