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Friday, March 8, 2013

Something to spend your tax refund on

I got a reminder of how useful my UPS (uninterruptible power supply) is. The power went off here at MacValley Labs, but my Mac Mini kept right on. When I logged in, no problems.

If you leave your Mac powered on and unattended for any length of time, get yourself a UPS. You can get them at Frys and Costco. They consist of a battery, the heaviest part, and electronic circuitry to keep the battery charged and also to generate electricity for your Mac.

Here is a link to Frys Electronics UPS selection. Here is a link to Costco’s selection of UPS devices.

Christopher Breen Macworld wrote about UPS power backups here. More tips on dealing withpower outages due to weather and whatnot here.

You cannot, though, just plug every computer peripheral into your UPS! Remember, it only provides a limited amount of power compared to the wall outlet.

For instance, don’t plug laser printers into UPS. They use a lot of power and you don’t need them if the power goes off. Plug them into the surge suppressor sockets on the UPS, the ones that don’t provide uninterruptible power.

Your new UPS may come with a CD…for Windows. Don’t worry, OS X has built-in UPS software. It’s activated when you plug in the USB cable from your UPS to your Mac. Look on the Energy Saver preference pane, the one that looks like a light bulb, to see if you see UPS as one of the two tabs.


Tom Briant

Editor, MacValley Blog

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