Take a closer look at your Spark implementation

Take a closer look at your Spark implementation

Apache Spark, the extremely popular data analytics execution engine, was initially released in 2012. It wasn’t until 2015 that Spark really saw an uptick in support, but by November 2015, Spark saw 50 percent more activity than the core Apache Hadoop project itself, with more than 750 contributors from hundreds of companies participating in its development in one form or another.

Spark is a hot new commodity for a reason. Its performance, general-purpose applicability, and programming flexibility combine to make it a versatile execution engine. Yet that variety also leads to varying levels of support for the product and different ways solutions are delivered.

While evaluating analytic software products that support Spark, customers should look closely under the hood and examine four key facets of how the support for Spark is implemented:

  • How Spark is utilized inside the platform
  • What you get in a packaged product that includes Spark
  • How Spark is exposed to you and your team
  • How you perform analytics with the different Spark libraries

Spark can be used as a developer tool via its APIs, or it can be used by BI tools via its SQL interface. Or Spark can be embedded in an application, providing access to business users without requiring programming skills and without limiting Spark’s utility through a SQL interface. I examine each of these options below and explain why all Spark support is not the same.

Programming on Spark

If you want the full power of Spark, you can program directly to its processing engine. There are APIs that are exposed through Java, Python, Scala, and R. In addition to stream and graph processing components, Spark offers a machine-learning library (MLlib) as well as Spark SQL, which allows data tools to connect to a Spark engine and query structured data, or programmers to access data via SQL queries they write themselves.

A number of vendors offer standalone Spark implementations; the major Hadoop distribution suppliers also offer Spark within their platforms. Access is exposed either through a command line or Notebook interface.

But performing analytics on core Spark with its APIs is a time-consuming, programming-intensive process. While Spark offers an easier programming model than, say, native Hadoop, it still requires developers. Even for organizations with developer resources, deploying them to work on lengthy data analytics projects may amount to an intolerable hidden cost. With many organizations, programming on Spark is not an actionable course for this reason.

BI on Spark

Spark SQL is a standards-based way to access data in Spark. It has been relatively easy for BI products to add support for Spark SQL to query tabular data in Spark. The dialect of SQL used by Spark is similar to that of Apache Hive, making Spark SQL akin to earlier SQL-on-Hadoop technologies.

Although Spark SQL uses the Spark engine behind the scenes, it suffers from the same disadvantages as Hive and Impala: Data must be in a structured, tabular format to be queried. This forces Spark to be treated as if it were a relational database, which cripples many of the advantages of a big data engine. Simply put, putting BI on top of Spark requires the transformation of the data into a reasonable tabular format that can be consumed by the BI tools.

Embedding Spark

Another way to leverage Spark is to abstract away its complexity by embedding it deep into a product and taking full advantage of its power behind the scenes. This allows users to leverage the speed and power of Spark without needing developers.

This architecture brings up three key questions. First, does the platform truly hide all of the technical complexities of Spark? As a customer, one needs to examine all aspects of how you would create each step of the analytic cycle — integration, preparation, analysis, visualization, and operationalization. A number of products offer self-service capabilities that abstract away Spark’s complexities, but others force the analyst to dig down and code — for example, in performing integration and preparation. These products may also require you to first ingest all your data into the Hadoop file system for processing. This adds extra length to your analytic cycles, creates fragile and fragmented analytic processes, and requires specialized skills.

Second, how does the platform take advantage of Spark? It’s critical to understand how Spark is used in the execution framework. Spark is sometimes embedded in a fashion that does not have the full scalability of a true cluster. This can limit overall performance as the volume of analytic jobs increases.

Third, how are you protected for the future? The strength of being tightly coupled with the Spark engine is also a weakness. The big data industry moves quickly. MapReduce was the predominant engine in Hadoop for six years. Apache Tez became mainstream in 2013, and now Spark has become a major engine. Assuming the technology curve continues to produce new engines at the same rate, Spark will almost certainly be supplanted by a new engine within 18 months, forcing products tightly coupled to Spark to be reengineered — a far from trivial undertaking. Even with that effort put aside, you must consider whether the redesigned product will be fully compatible with what you’ve built in the older version.

The first step to uncovering the full power of Spark is to understand that not all Spark support is created equal. It’s crucial that organizations grasp the differences in Spark implementations and what each approach means for their overall analytic workflow. Only then can they make a strategic buying decision that will meet their needs over the long haul.

Andrew Brust is senior director of market strategy and intelligence at Datameer.

 

 

[Source:- IW]

What’s on your Start Screen, Zac Bowden?

Image result for What's on your Start Screen, Zac Bowden?

It’s been a little while since we last did a “What’s on your Start Screen?”, and that’s because so much has been changing within the world of Windows phone over the last couple of years. With the introduction of Windows 10 Mobile, the redesign of several Windows phone apps, and the slow transition from several different versions of Windows to one single Windows that works across every device, we just haven’t found the time!

A lot of Windows Phone users have since left the platform since our last Start Screen article, and that’s unfortunate. However, there’s still a few of us left using Windows phones as our daily drivers, and I thought it’d be a good idea to share some of the apps I’m using on the lead up to 2017.

I don’t have many apps pinned, and that’s simply because I don’t like scrolling on my Start Screen. I’m a huge user of live tiles, and I think live tiles should be on screen at all times so I can see what information they have to offer. Still, I try to make good use of my screen real estate.

My Apps

  • Messaging: I’m super big on SMS. I know that’s kind of odd leading into 2017, but I much prefer it over any form of instant messenger such as WhatsApp or Skype. If I can, I’ll always opt to send an SMS if trying to contact someone. Everybody has SMS.
  • Phone: The standard built-in Phone app. I don’t make calls all that often, but I feel like I need to have this app pinned on my Start Screen just in case I am in a situation in which I do need to make a call.
  • Outlook Calendar: I like being able to see the date and upcoming appointments on my Start Screen, and the Calendar app does just that. Rarely do I open the Calendar app, this is definitely one of those situations in which the live tile does everything I need it to do.
  • Microsoft Edge: Edge is the best way to browse the web on a Windows 10 Mobile device, so I’m constantly using it to view websites, read news, watch videos and more. It syncs favorites across Windows 10 devices, and is lightweight and easy to use.
  • Windows Store: The Windows Store is home to all purchasable Content in the Windows ecosystem. Whether it be apps, games, music or movies/TV, I’m always in the Store looking for something new to spend my money on. I often find a movie, or a game that catches my interest.
  • Twitter: When it comes to Twitter, I opt for the official Twitter app from Twitter themselves. Yes, I know there are far better Twitter clients out there built by third parties, but I like the simplicity of the official app. It’s universal and works across PC and Phone, and what’s more, even though there are a plethora of bugs and missing features, it gets the job done.
  • Cortana: I don’t actually use Cortana all that much, but I have it pinned just in case I want to mess with a setting or two with syncing notifications and whatnot. I like the news ticker that pops up on the live tile, and will sometimes open it up to check on reminders and adjust things.
  • Outlook Mail: The built-in Mail app is my choice of email client on Windows 10 Mobile. It does everything I need, from a reliable live tile all the way down to the simplicity of the app. I can add my Outlook, Google, Yahoo and other email accounts with ease, and configure notification popups from specific accounts if needed.
  • GroupMe: GroupMe is one of the best group messaging apps available on Windows 10 Mobile, and I use it frequently with some of the Windows Central team. It’s great for team collaboration, goofing around, and just sharing things for later.
  • WhatsApp Beta: Although I’m big on SMS, I do have a need for WhatsApp too. A lot of my personal friends would rather be contacted through WhatsApp, so that’s what I use when contacting them. The WhatsApp Beta app, although still a Windows Phone 8.1 app, is coming along quite nicely being updated constantly with new features and changes.
  • Slack: Slack is the main communication platform we use here at Mobile Nations. It’s how I message the team, and how the team message me. It’s still in beta, but the app is feature-filled enough to be usable as one of my “must-have” apps on my phone.
  • Groove Music: Groove is the best music streaming service available on Windows 10 Mobile. Sure, there’s Pandora and Spotify, but those apps aren’t all that great compared to Groove, which is arguable the best app available on Windows 10 right now. I’m a subscriber to Groove music, and most of the music I’d want to listen to is ready to stream from the service.
  • Windows Central: Of course, how could I not have this one pinned to my Start Screen? I love the Windows Central app, it’s easy to use and is always updated with the latest articles direct from our feed. The live tile is super customizable too!
  • Weather: I live in the United Kingdom, so I need to know whether the weather outside is grey and raining. It usually is, but sometimes that live tile shows a bit of sunshine, and that makes me smile.
  • Instagram: Not a huge user of Instagram, I generally only use it when procrastinating. Maybe one day I’ll be Instagram-famous.
  • Trello Central: We use Trello for article planning and scheduling here at Mobile Nations, so it makes sense for me to have an app on my phone that allows me to jump in there and check on things. It’s not super feature-filled, being a 3rd-party app, but it gets the job done.
  • Uber: As a kid, I always wanted own my own car so I could drive wherever I needed, whenever I needed to. In 2016 however, all I need is Uber. Who needs to drive these days when you can get someone else to drive for you?!

 

[Source:- Windowscentral]

Take a closer look at your Spark implementation

Take a closer look at your Spark implementation

Apache Spark, the extremely popular data analytics execution engine, was initially released in 2012. It wasn’t until 2015 that Spark really saw an uptick in support, but by November 2015, Spark saw 50 percent more activity than the core Apache Hadoop project itself, with more than 750 contributors from hundreds of companies participating in its development in one form or another.

Spark is a hot new commodity for a reason. Its performance, general-purpose applicability, and programming flexibility combine to make it a versatile execution engine. Yet that variety also leads to varying levels of support for the product and different ways solutions are delivered.

While evaluating analytic software products that support Spark, customers should look closely under the hood and examine four key facets of how the support for Spark is implemented:

  • How Spark is utilized inside the platform
  • What you get in a packaged product that includes Spark
  • How Spark is exposed to you and your team
  • How you perform analytics with the different Spark libraries

Spark can be used as a developer tool via its APIs, or it can be used by BI tools via its SQL interface. Or Spark can be embedded in an application, providing access to business users without requiring programming skills and without limiting Spark’s utility through a SQL interface. I examine each of these options below and explain why all Spark support is not the same.

Programming on Spark

If you want the full power of Spark, you can program directly to its processing engine. There are APIs that are exposed through Java, Python, Scala, and R. In addition to stream and graph processing components, Spark offers a machine-learning library (MLlib) as well as Spark SQL, which allows data tools to connect to a Spark engine and query structured data, or programmers to access data via SQL queries they write themselves.

A number of vendors offer standalone Spark implementations; the major Hadoop distribution suppliers also offer Spark within their platforms. Access is exposed either through a command line or Notebook interface.

But performing analytics on core Spark with its APIs is a time-consuming, programming-intensive process. While Spark offers an easier programming model than, say, native Hadoop, it still requires developers. Even for organizations with developer resources, deploying them to work on lengthy data analytics projects may amount to an intolerable hidden cost. With many organizations, programming on Spark is not an actionable course for this reason.

BI on Spark

Spark SQL is a standards-based way to access data in Spark. It has been relatively easy for BI products to add support for Spark SQL to query tabular data in Spark. The dialect of SQL used by Spark is similar to that of Apache Hive, making Spark SQL akin to earlier SQL-on-Hadoop technologies.

Although Spark SQL uses the Spark engine behind the scenes, it suffers from the same disadvantages as Hive and Impala: Data must be in a structured, tabular format to be queried. This forces Spark to be treated as if it were a relational database, which cripples many of the advantages of a big data engine. Simply put, putting BI on top of Spark requires the transformation of the data into a reasonable tabular format that can be consumed by the BI tools.

Embedding Spark

Another way to leverage Spark is to abstract away its complexity by embedding it deep into a product and taking full advantage of its power behind the scenes. This allows users to leverage the speed and power of Spark without needing developers.

This architecture brings up three key questions. First, does the platform truly hide all of the technical complexities of Spark? As a customer, one needs to examine all aspects of how you would create each step of the analytic cycle — integration, preparation, analysis, visualization, and operationalization. A number of products offer self-service capabilities that abstract away Spark’s complexities, but others force the analyst to dig down and code — for example, in performing integration and preparation. These products may also require you to first ingest all your data into the Hadoop file system for processing. This adds extra length to your analytic cycles, creates fragile and fragmented analytic processes, and requires specialized skills.

Second, how does the platform take advantage of Spark? It’s critical to understand how Spark is used in the execution framework. Spark is sometimes embedded in a fashion that does not have the full scalability of a true cluster. This can limit overall performance as the volume of analytic jobs increases.

Third, how are you protected for the future? The strength of being tightly coupled with the Spark engine is also a weakness. The big data industry moves quickly. MapReduce was the predominant engine in Hadoop for six years. Apache Tez became mainstream in 2013, and now Spark has become a major engine. Assuming the technology curve continues to produce new engines at the same rate, Spark will almost certainly be supplanted by a new engine within 18 months, forcing products tightly coupled to Spark to be reengineered — a far from trivial undertaking. Even with that effort put aside, you must consider whether the redesigned product will be fully compatible with what you’ve built in the older version.

The first step to uncovering the full power of Spark is to understand that not all Spark support is created equal. It’s crucial that organizations grasp the differences in Spark implementations and what each approach means for their overall analytic workflow. Only then can they make a strategic buying decision that will meet their needs over the long haul.

 

[Source:- Infoworld]

 

How Spotify chooses what makes it onto your Discover Weekly playlist

Software engineer Edward Newett created Spotify's Discover Weekly algorithm

Edward Newett is the man behind one of the most influential innovations in music: the Spotify Discover Weekly algorithm. WIRED talks to the 36-year-old New Yorker about moulding the tastes of a generation.

How can an algorithm determine what tens of millions of people want to listen to every week?

Edward Newett: There are two parts to how the algorithm works: on one side, every week we’re modelling the relationship of everything we know about Spotify through our users’ playlist data.

On the other, we’re trying to model the behaviour of every single user on Spotify – their tastes, based primarily on their listening habits, what features they use on Spotify and also what artists they follow. So we take these two things and every Monday we recommend what we think you would like, but might not have heard about.

How does the algorithm determine what to serve up?

By trying to mimic the behaviour of all of our users when trying to put together their perfect mix, we can leverage Spotify’s two billion playlists, target individual tastes and come up with playlists that will be interesting.

What’s the origin of the algorithm?

When I joined in June 2013, I was on a team that was building the initial discovery product for Spotify – it was content in an almost Pinterest-style layout. At some point, a colleague and I decided that it would be a lot easier if we had it as a playlist. Then, around that time, a new product person joined our team and really loved what we were working on and helped us take it to market and make it a formal product.

Spotify announced in May 2016 that more than 40 million people had used its Discover Weekly service, streaming just under five billion tracks in under a year. How do you account for its popularity?

The biggest part is that it is deeply personalised to you. We’re finding ways, through personalised cover art and also by adding a track that we think would be familiar to you – based on artists you’ve listened to – to draw you in initially. Also, the more you listen to music, the better the recommendations for Discover Weekly become. And I think the playlist’s popularity also has something to do with this habit people got into: we were seeing tweets pretty early on that people were really looking forward to their new Discover Weekly and, by extension, Monday morning.

 

 
[Source:- Wired]

China didn’t steal your job—I did

China didn't steal your job—I did

The most discussed issue in the last election was the plight of the so-called white working class. The story goes that hardworking people had their jobs shipped to Mexico thanks to NAFTA. The second idea is that immigrants have stolen working-class jobs. The kicker is to blame the nation of China.

These ideas attempt to explain why the Rust Belt is idle, but they’re all wrong. Neither the Mexicans nor the Chinese stole those jobs. I did.

I didn’t do it alone, of course. You and the other members of the technology industry that came before us did the bulk of the work. And guess what? If factories come back to the United States as a result of new policy, they will be run by robots.

The boom in the use of less expensive labor overseas was fueled by cheap shipping costs and a simple labor-versus-capital decision. The cost of investing in new equipment in the United States is higher than employing people overseas to produce an item. In some industries, investing in capital is simply riskier. Think about fashion or the latest toy or trinket: If you set up a manufacturing line to make it and it’s only popular for a season or a year, then you’ve risked a lot for a relatively small margin.

On the flip side, this is also why you’ve seen pharmaceutical plants remain in the United States. Thanks to long-term patent protections, it isn’t as risky to automate a factory here. In fact, between liability and the protection of trade secrets, it’s probably less risky than using cheap labor overseas and shipping product. But make no mistake, these aren’t blue-collar jobs going to high school graduates. These factories are highly automated—and monitored by white-collar workers.

If tariffs were increased on goods produced using cheap labor overseas, then of course some factories would move here. Even in those cases, very little of the work would then be done by high school graduates. Gone are the jobs done by Eminem in “8 Mile,” where someone yells “up!” and “down!” while another person stamps sheet metal with a heavy press. Robots can do that easily.

The equation isn’t much different for undocumented immigrants. Farms have invested heavily in capital equipment over the years—with the “last mile” handled by low-paid guest or undocumented workers. If those workers are ejected from the United States, you can bet agribusiness will invest in automation to replace the manual labor.

Capital tends to win in the end. Why? Technology—that is, “we”—tend to make investing in tech cheaper or more productive than labor eventually. Whether we’re designing robots to replace factory workers or developing machine learning to make administrative assistants redundant, we help justify technology purchases rather than hiring messy, expensive, unpredictable humans.

I strongly believe this is better for us all in the end, but the economic and social costs in the short-to-medium term are high. Relentless automation skews the distribution of wealth, undercutting relative economic power of the middle and working class versus the richest among us—and it ultimately hurts overall economic growth because you reduce the number of people capable of buying whatever goods the economy produces.

The solution to this problem is not as simple as “drill baby drill” or exiting NAFTA or slapping 35 percent tariffs on China. We need to take a holistic look at economic policy, education reform, and welfare spending—if not out of the goodness of our hearts, then for the long-term economic well-being of us all.

 

 

[Source:- Javaworld]

Here are a few easy steps to setup UPI apps on your phone

There’s no denying that demonetization has affected the public in a significant way. Thankfully, the government has provided various options for the customers to continue banking as usual with the help of easy-to-use mobile wallets as well as the newly launched UPI services. UPI stands for Unified Payments Interface, and a number of financial institutions have aligned with the project.

What can you do with UPI apps?
Well, you can send snappy payments via IMPS and even request for payments from your contacts, provided they are also using a UPI app on their smartphone. This is pretty much like a mobile wallet, but something that is inked directly with the bank.

One advantage with UPI apps is that even if you download an app from another bank, you will still be able to enter account details from your source bank without much fuss.

How to get started?
The apps are Android only for the time being, but an iPhone app is apparently on its way. Once you get the app of your choice (Yes Bank, ICICI Bank etc) on the Play Store, you will simply have to enter your mobile number that you have registered with the bank. This step will also ask you to create a new 4-digit PIN number, which is basically a password and will have to be used when users log in each time.

Following this process, you will have to create a new and unique VPA or virtual payment address. This will be used by others to send you money or identity your account. The VPA can be anything ranging from your name to the phone number.

With the VPA process out of the way, it’s now time to connect to your bank so that all your details are made visible. The transaction limit on UPI is capped at Rs 1,00,000, with the minimum being Rs 50.

To receive money from someone, you merely have to pick out the VPA name/address from your list and then request or schedule a payment. Bear in mind that you can only receive money when the user on the other end also has a UPI app.

 

 

[Source:- Techradre]

How to schedule WhatsApp messages on your Android smartphone

WhatsApp has become an indispensable part of our lives, especially in India where almost everyone who has a smartphone uses the messaging service for texting/calling their loved ones.

WhatsApp is a great application with tons of features, but one thing it lacks is the ability to schedule messages. Scheduling messages can prove to be very nifty, especially if you want to send someone a birthday wish, or you have to send your boss some important information at a particular time.

Scheduler for WhatsApp
This is an easy to use application that allows you to can schedule messages on WhatsApp. The nest part is that using this application doesn’t require rooting your Android device and can be used as is from the Play Store.

You can set daily, weekly, monthly or even yearly schedules, sent messages are added to their proper threads on WhatsApp and can also schedule messages for WhatsApp groups ( Though you need to buy the Pro version for that).

 

 

[Source:- Techrader]

Paragon Hard Disk Manager review: Total control of your Mac’s storage devices

paragon disk manager mac

For many Mac owners, the built-in Disk Utility is all they’ll ever need. After all, Apple’s software handles the basic task of formatting HFS+, FAT32, and exFAT volumes and partitions, along with the occasional need for one-click verification and repair of native OS X disks. (And with macOS Sierra, the RAID tools make a return.)

However, there are plenty of valid reasons for wanting to do more with your drives, and not all are exclusive to technically inclined users. A few examples would be optimizing OS X, Windows, and Linux file systems, performing a secure wipe, or backing up data in a more effective manner than Time Machine.

Paragon Hard Disk Manager offers total control over storage volumes for Mac, Windows, or Linux.

If there’s anyone who knows what makes these file systems tick, it’s Paragon Software. Founded over two decades ago, the company makes it easy to format, read, and write NTFS or ExtFS volumes on a Mac with the simplicity and performance of native media. Now they’ve gone one step beyond those drivers with an all-in-one storage utility that makes Apple’s Disk Utility look positively feeble by comparison.

At your service

Making its debut on the Mac after years of services as a suite of Windows tools,Paragon Hard Disk Manager is an impressively solid OS X debut for a first version. Functionality is divided across two tabs: Disks and Partitions, where the majority of storage management tools reside, or Backup and Restore, used to create snapshot-based archives.

Hard Disk Manager is compatible with OS X Mavericks 10.9 and later, including support for the latest macOS Sierra courtesy of a free update. At first launch, HDM installs a few required under-the-hood “auxiliary components,” then displays a warning if System Integrity Protection (SIP) is enabled.

Introduced with OS X El Capitan 10.11, SIP prevents Mac software from gaining root privileges—great for combating potential malware, but a hindrance in the case of a utility like HDM. Senior contributor Glenn Fleishman explained how to manually disable SIP in a post last year, but HDM provides a one-click, Terminal-free method using bootable media that doubles as an OS X Recovery disk.

As a safeguard, HDM doesn’t immediately run most tasks, instead queuing them up awaiting further confirmation from the Apply Operations button before proceeding; there’s also an option to undo tasks from the queue. It’s great for preventing potential mistakes, but the extra clicks do tend to slow things down a bit.

To make the most of HDM, you’ll want to create a bootable OS X Recovery disk and disable Apple’s System Integrity Protection (SIP) for OS X El Capitan and later.

Disks and partitions

Like Disk Utility, Hard Disk Manager’s Disks and Partitions tab displays a list of all mounted volumes. But unlike Apple’s dumbed-down approach, HDM provides more detailed disk maps, which represent partitions and logical disks as color-coded bars based on the file system in use: Purple for HFS+, light/dark blue for FAT16/32, aqua blue for NTFS, teal for exFAT, green for ExtFS, or orange for free space.

Needless to say, this approach is vastly superior to Disk Utility, which displays information by content type, like an iOS device. There are two ways to use the utility—you can wipe or copy an entire disk and edit sectors by clicking the gear in the upper right corner, or act upon individual partitions from their respective settings below.

Hard Disk Manager also displays partition information as a list at the bottom of the window, with available options only a contextual menu away. Oddly, this method doesn’t work from the graphical drive map, one of my few quibbles with an otherwise excellent utility.

Although HDM can format, partition, and otherwise work with non-native NTFS or ExFS volumes, you’ll still need Paragon’s replacement drivers installed to access files. Also, despite the name, HDM works equally well with solid-state storage (SSD), USB flash drives, and Apple’s hybrid Fusion Drives as it does with traditional platter-based disks.

Whether you need to format, partition, check file system integrity, or securely wipe one or more volumes, Paragon Hard Disk Manager is ready to serve.

Backup and restore

One of Paragon’s pride and joys is its Snapshot technology, which allows users to create an exact sector-level copy of the operating system and all user data. Compared to Time Machine and other Mac-native backup solutions, Snapshot offers improved performance, with system recovery times in minutes rather than hours.

The Backup and Restore options are laid out in a straightforward manner, and the Create New Archive wizard detects mounted OS X or Windows operating systems automatically, or you can manually select one or more partitions from the disk map. There’s currently no way to schedule backups as part of a regular routine, but Paragon plans to introduce this functionality in a future update.

HDM saves archives as Paragon Virtual Hard Drive (PVHD) images by default, which supports incremental imaging. This approach minimizes the time and storage space required for subsequent backups of the same volume(s). The installation also includes a VMDK mounter utility for those who prefer this format.

Paragon maintains a nice balance between ease of use and more advanced features, although novices will want to spend a little time getting accustomed to the unique UI before they start tinkering with existing volumes.

Hard Disk Manager uses Snapshot technology for sector-based backup and recovery that’s faster and more reliable than Time Machine.

Bottom line

If you’re longing for the more robust features of earlier Disk Utility versions or want complete command over connected storage devices, Paragon Hard Disk Manager is the way to go.

 

[Source: Macworld]

6 ways to transfer files from your Mac to your iOS device

macbook ipad iphone apple stock

I recently wrote about 9 ways you can transfer files from one Mac to another, which is useful if you have, say, an iMac and a laptop, and need to pass files back and forth. But you may also need to transfer files from your Mac to your iOS device, which isn’t as simple: iOS isn’t designed to accept just any file, and you don’t have the same options to open files with different apps. In this article, I’m going to show you 6 ways you can move files of various types to your iOS devices.

AirDrop

airdrop
Choose which app to open a file you receive with AirDrop. Here, I’ve sent a PDF file to my iPhone, and all of the above apps can display it.

AirDrop is Apple’s technology for sharing files across devices. You can use it to transfer files from one Mac to another, and also use it to transfer files from a Mac to an iOS device, or from one iOS device to another. On your Mac, choose Go > AirDrop in the Finder, and then, on your iOS device, make sure AirDrop is activated in the Control Center (swipe up from the bottom of the screen to access this setting). You can choose to allow transfers from Contacts Only or from Everyone; it’s best to choose the former.

Your iOS device needs to be awake for AirDrop to be active. On the Mac, drag a file onto the icon for your iOS device in the AirDrop window. On your iOS device, you’ll see a menu offering to open the file; this menu lists the apps that can open the file type.

For some types of files, AirDrop isn’t very helpful. For example, if I try to send an AAC audio file from my Mac to my iPhone, the latter offers to open it with apps such as Voice Memos, Evernote, Dropbox, etc., but not with the iOS Music app, or other music player apps on my device. So you can’t transfer all types of files that your iOS device can use (but see below for a way to transfer audio and video files).

Email

Using email is a good way to send small files to an iOS device. Just create a new email addressed to yourself and add the file(s) as attachment to the message. Tap the attachment in the message to download and then open the file. Depending on the file type, you may or may not be able to open files on your device. Naturally, you’ll want to do this when you’re on a Wi-Fi network to avoid potentially using a lot of cellular data if you’re sending large files.

Dropbox or other cloud services

If you have the Dropbox app on your iOS device (or apps for other cloud services, such as Google Drive, Box, etc.) you can add files to your cloud and then access them on your iOS device. As with email, you’re limited as to which types of files you can open. If there are specific files you need to access on your iOS device, you may need to find apps that can read them. For example, if you need to read Excel spreadsheets, you’ll need either Microsoft Excel for iOS, Apple’s Numbers, or another app that can view (and perhaps edit) these files.

icloud drive
Viewing files in the iCloud Drive app on an iPhone.

iCloud Drive

iCloud Drive is a bit different from the other cloud services. It stores files that you’ve opened with specific apps in dedicated folders. You can add a file to iCloud Drive and create your own folders, or just copy files to the top level of iCloud Drive. To do this on your Mac, choose Go > iCloud Drivein the Finder, then add the files to the location you desire. If you’re adding a file that you can open in a specific app that already has a named folder, you can add it directly to that folder. On iOS, either open the app that can view the file, or open the iCloud Drive app, tap the file, and then tap the Share button to see your options for opening the file.

iTunes File Sharing

Some iOS apps can use iTunes File Sharing, a way of adding and managing files in iTunes so these apps can access them. To use iTunes File Sharing, connect your iOS device to your Mac, select it in iTunes, and then click Apps in the sidebar. Scroll down to the File Sharing section.

itunes file sharing
With iTunes File Sharing, you can sync files to your iOS device to use with specific apps.

In the above example, I’ve added a PDF file to GoodNotes. When I click Sync at the bottom of the window, iTunes will copy that file (as well as copy any other items selected to sync, such as music, apps, etc.). You can also delete files by selecting them in the File Sharing dialog and pressing the Delete key.

With some apps, you have to click + or Import, and choose to import the file(s) from iTunes. This is the case even if the files have been copied to your iOS device. Other apps may show the files immediately.

Copy audio or video files with Waltr

Normally, the only way you can copy audio or video files to an iOS device—at least to be able to play them in Apple’s Music or Videos app—is by syncing with iTunes. You can use iTunes File Sharing to transfer this type of file to certain apps, such as VLC, for example. Softorino’s $30 Waltr can copy almost any type of audio or video file to an iOS device, converting it, if necessary, to a format that Apple’s apps can play. All you do is connect your iOS device, quit iTunes, and than drag your file(s) on Waltr’s window. The app converts and transfers the files, and you can then access them in the Music or Videos app.

 
[Source:- Macworld]

How to change your phone number on WhatsApp (and why you should): What to do when WhatsApp voice calls don’t get through

Most of us are pretty familiar with WhatsApp Messenger. You install the app on your phone, verify it with your phone number, then get busy sending free texts and picture messages over Wi-Fi. But you can also make calls using WhatsApp. Or, at least, some of us can. Also see:WhatsApp ban: What you need to know.

If you’ve ever shopped around for a better phone tariff and put a new SIM in your phone without transferring your old number to it (this most likely applies to those of you with ‘disposable’ PAYG SIMs), you may find that people are having trouble getting hold of you. (Or they will anyway.) Also see: Best SIM-only deals.

This is because WhatsApp lists your old phone number rather than your new one, and your friends will be able to see your account only if they keep your old number on their phone or have an active conversation with you.

If you have recently changed your phone number but not told WhatsApp about the change, here’s what you should do.

How to change your WhatsApp number

1. Open the WhatsApp app and tap the three-dot icon at the top right corner. Choose Settings.

WhatsApp change number

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2. On the next screen choose Account.

WhatsApp change number

3. Now choose Change number.

WhatsApp change number

4. Tap Next at the top right corner of the screen.

WhatsApp change number

5. Enter your old phone number, then your new phone number, and hit Done to save.

WhatsApp change number

[Source:- PCadvisor]