What Is the Google Chrome OS?

Chrome OS bears the same name as Google’s Web browser, called Chrome. In fact, Chrome is used as the primary interface for Chrome OS. You can see how Chrome, and therefore Chrome OS, has evolved over time through all the different versions that have been released.

Target Audience for Chrome OS

Chrome OS was targeted initially towards netbooks, super small notebooks designed primarily for Web browsing. Although some netbooks were sold with Linux, the consumer preference tended toward Windows, and then consumers decided that maybe the novelty wasn’t worth it. Netbooks were often far too small and far too underpowered.

Google’s vision for Chrome extends beyond the netbook. The operating system might eventually be a real competitor to Windows and Mac operating systems.

However, Google doesn’t consider Chrome OS to be a tablet operating system. Android is Google’s tablet operating system because it’s built around a touch-screen interface while Chrome OS still uses a keyboard and mouse or touchpad.

Chrome OS Availability

Chrome OS is available for developers or anyone with an interest. You can even download a copy of Chrome OS for your home computer, but you have to have Linux and an account with root access.

Tip: If you’ve never heard of a sudo command, you should probably just buy Chrome pre-installed on a consumer device.

Google has worked with well-known manufacturers, such as Acer, Adobe, ASUS, Freescale, Hewlett-Packard, Lenovo, Qualcomm, Texas Instruments, and Toshiba.

Cr-48 Netbooks

Google launched a pilot program using a beta version of Chrome installed on a netbook, called the Cr-48. Developers, educators, and end-users could register for the pilot program, and a number of them were sent the Cr-48 to test. The netbook came with a limited amount of free 3G data access from Verizon Wireless.

Google ended the Cr-48 pilot program in March of 2011, but the original Cr-48s were still a coveted item after the pilot ended.

Chrome and Android

Although Android can run on netbooks, Chrome OS is being developed as a separate project. Android is designed for running phones and phone systems, so it’s not really designed for use on computers. Chrome OS, on the other hand, is designed particularly for computers rather than phones.

To further confuse this distinction, there are rumors that Chrome is indeed destined to become a tablet OS. Netbook sales have been eroding as full-size laptops become cheaper and tablet computers like the iPad become more popular. However, iPads have declined in popularity in American schools while Chromebooks have gained popularity.

Linux

Chrome uses a Linux kernel. Long ago there was a rumor that Google planned on releasing their own version of Ubuntu Linux dubbed Goobuntu. This isn’t exactly Goobuntu, but the rumor is no longer quite as crazy.

Google OS Philosophy

Chrome OS is designed as an operating system for computers that are only used for connecting to the internet. What this means is that Chrome OS is usually used for Web browsing, streaming video and music, online document editing, etc.

This is vastly different than other operating systems like Windows and macOS, which are primarily used on desktop devices and can run full programs like MS Office, Adobe Photoshop, etc. Those kinds of programs cannot run on Chrome OS as easily as they can on most other desktop operating systems.

Rather than downloading and installing programs on Chrome OS, you just run them in your Web browser and store them on the internet; these are often called Chrome extensions. While this does drastically limit the kinds of programs that can run on Chrome OS, there are actually lots of alternative apps made specially for Chrome OS.

In order to make that possible, the OS has to boot up very quickly, and the Web browser has to be extremely fast. Chrome OS makes both of those happen.

Some Chromebooks also support Android apps from Google Play Store. This means that if you have a supported device, you can install Android apps on your Chromebook much like you can on an Android smartphone.

Is this OS enticing enough for users to buy a netbook with Chrome OS instead of Windows? That’s uncertain. Linux hasn’t made a huge dent in Windows sales, and it’s been developed for much longer. However, cheap devices and a simple, easy to use interface provided by Chrome OS may just entice users to switch.

 

Optimize Backups to Cloud with Backup Exec 16 Feature Pack 2

The cloud architecture is being adopted at a faster rate than ever before. We are at a point where more organizations across numerous verticals are realizing the benefits of this architecture. The growth isn’t just happening at the enterprise level, SMBs and mid-market organizations are absolutely leveraging some type of cloud ecosystem to keep up with the pace of the industry.

In the realm of cloud backups, the idea of supplementing, or entirely getting rid of your local storage devices, with cloud storage devices is quite appealing. Cloud backups offer a lot of benefits but at the same time also present challenges. When you use backup to cloud to protect your business applications, it is also necessary that you take into consideration the optimal parameters to use when it comes to uploading the data.

Incorrect parameters can lead to either poor backup performance or even backup failures. So before you pat yourself on crossing off your to-dos list for the backup to cloud operations, do not forget this critical one: Fine-tune your backup to cloud jobs to ensure they are performing optimally for the network conditions they are operating.

Backup to Cloud is nothing but the ability to upload File System and Application objects being protected to a cloud storage device. Naturally, doing a synchronous upload of each object, one by one, would be very slow. You need to upload the objects in parallel to achieve acceptable performance.

Backup Exec uses Cloud Connectors which are based on Open Storage Technology (OST) that offer seamless connectivity to Amazon Web Services (AWS) S3, Microsoft Azure as well as Google Cloud storage to achieve the parallel uploads. So it is important that the number of parallel connections are tuned correctly so that the Cloud Connectors and in turn the backups to cloud are able to perform optimally.

Fine tuning options with Backup Exec 16 Feature Pack 1

Backup Exec 16 Feature Pack 1 provided you the ability to manually tune the upload (or Write) connections that the Cloud Connector uses for Cloud-based backup jobs as shown in the figure 1. You can increase the number of ‘Write Connections’ in order to better utilize the available network bandwidth. On the other hand, the number of ‘Write Connections’ will need to be reduced if there are bandwidth limitations in the network.

Figure 1Figure 1

The hard part is to make these adjustments manually and determine what ‘Write Connections’ would reliably work for backups in your network configurations. For more details on how to manually fine tune the Cloud Connectors, you can refer to the following links.

Enter Cloud Connect Optimizer with Backup Exec 16 Feature Pack 2

Backup Exec 16-Feature Pack 2 introduces Cloud Connect Optimizer, referred to as CCO, that automatically tests the network for various ‘Write Connections’ and then suggest a best suited value that can be applied for subsequent backup jobs. It runs as a Backup Exec Utility Job and uses the same OST framework as what backup jobs use.

The CCO feature attempts to address two main concerns:

  1. Poor Backup performance – Although the network has a capability of a high upload speed, the backup jobs are unable to utilize the available bandwidth to achieve a better backup performance
  2. Frequent Job failures – Networks with low bandwidth encounter frequent backup to cloud jobs failures with write errors after the job has run for a while

You can be run CCO for any configured Cloud Storage device in Backup Exec as displayed in the figure 2.

Figure 2Figure 2

Due to possible variations in network conditions at different times of the day, Veritas recommends running the CCO job as close to the backup window as possible to get the best possible results. In order to facilitate this, the CCO job can either be scheduled to run immediately or at a later date and time.

The CCO job tests different values of ‘Write Connections’ by uploading relatively small test data sets to the cloud storage and monitoring the throughput. What values to test and how many tests are conducted is decided by an internal adaptive algorithm that works on the basis of obtaining feedback from the underlying Cloud Connector component. The CCO then consolidates its test results and suggests what is best suited for the tested network. The suggested value of Write Connections can then be applied either manually or updated automatically so that subsequent backup to cloud jobs can benefit from this value.

The Cloud Connect Optimizer feature in Backup Exec 16 Feature Pack 2 allows you to quickly test your network and suggests parameters that will help ensure the backup to cloud operations are performing optimally. It does this in an automated fashion thereby saving a lot of time and effort in fine tuning these parameters.

And finally, it represents our continued commitment to quickly bring incremental improvements to new features that we release based on feedback from our customers.

If you are not a current Backup Exec customer, we invite you to learn more about the solution at the following link: 

Intuos Draw Review: The Simplest Wacom

Intuos Draw review: best Wacom for beginners & back-to-basics users

The Wacom Intuos Draw is the most basic of the Intuos graphics tablets line and the only Intuos that does not have multitouch capability. That means you can only use the pen on it; you won’t be able to use hand gestures such as pinch or zoom. This Wacom Intuos Draw review is of the Small size, the only size it comes in.

The Draw not as basic as Wacom’s Bamboo signature pads, which don’t have a lot of art features. It’s the simplest of their graphics tablets.

This makes it a good drawing tablet for beginners who might not need multitouch, and want something affordable. If you just prefer or require a straightforward graphics tablet that has Wacom quality without much learning curve, the Intuos Draw might be for you.

Check price

Features:

Type of tablet: Graphics tablet, Wacom EMR digitizer
1,024 levels of pressure sensitivity
No multitouch
no tilt/angle or rotation sensitivity
Size: 8.25 x 6.7″
Active area:  6.0 x 3.7 in(152 x 95 mm)
Right and left-handed use
Colors: white or mint blue
Size: Small only
Weight: about 10 oz. (290 ±50g)
Resolution: 2540 lpi
Reading Speed (pen): 133pps

What’s in the Box

Intuos Draw (small)
Intuos Pen
Charger
Nibs (3 extra, total 4)
CD with driver and manual
documentation

Inside the outer sleeve is a high-quality, nonflimsy black cardboard box that offers solid protection for shipping.

You can use the CD, which has the driver, if you have a CD drive, or you can download the driver from Wacom. I always prefer to download regardless, in case there has been an update.

Intuos Draw art software: ArtRage Lite examples

The Draw will work with any art program, including Photoshop and all Adobe software, and gets pressure sensitivity in Adobe Illustrator. It’s fine for Mac and Windows. Wacom includes some free art software with all its tablets, a different program depending on the model. The current offering, which I did these doodles in, is ArtRage Lite.

The Intuos package includes a code to type in to get the free art software and other offers from the Wacom site. In addition to ArtRage Lite, an offer for 30-day subscription to Lynda.com software courses, and an offer for a free photo print on metal. Wacom also offers access to online art tutorials on its own site.

The offers change from time to time, so check when you buy the tablet. Though there are free art programs you can get online, I really enjoy ArtRage, which has a lot of fun brushes and effects, some of which you can see in the above doodles. These include glitter, oil, pastel, palette knife, and roller. It’s a really easy and intuitive program, and is inexpensive to buy the full version from ArtRage (they have a free demo version, too).

These perks are a good incentive to stick with Wacom, especially with their entry-level drawing tablets such as this.

Build and features

The back compartment stores the extra nibs. Below the nibs, that little circle is the nib remover where you insert the pen with nib and it pulls it out painlessly. The two compartments around the nibs are for the optional Wi-fi kit parts.

The micro-USB fits snugly and securely into the tablet’s side.

On the upper right corner of the tablet is a small security lock slot for a Kensington lock or pen tether. It’s marked with a small lock icon. The tablet top has a neat little canvas pen loop you can put your pen in. The loop fits snugly and you have to put the pen in starting with the pen’s back end.

The small dots on the surface show the active area, which is mappable, meaning you can use just part of it if you want. Mapping is useful if you want to work without moving your hand a lot. Using just a small part of the tablet, a small movement will go a long way. You set the mapping function in the driver.

Though the Intuos Draw looks almost toylike, it’s not a toy. It’s fairly well built for something so light, though I wouldn’t want to drop it hard, because the outer case doesn’t seem super protective. I found myself gently handling the detachable pieces such as the back cover.

The tablet has lots of good Wacom features, such as getting pressure sensitivity in Adobe Illustrator, and it’s got good old Wacom EMR, the most sensitive type of Wacom digitizer.

If you’ve got a multiple monitor setup, the Intuos Draw might be too small to effectively cover all the pixels needed. Otherwise, it should work on most setups, even with a large monitor.

Intuos Pen

The pen has two programmable buttons that you can program for just as many things as you can the Express Keys. It has no eraser tip. It’s batteryless, lightweight, and comfortable to hold. It’s smaller and lighter than the Pro Pen or other Wacom pens meant to be used on the higher-end Intuos Pros and MobileStudio Pro.

I weighed it and it’s only 9 grams, so light it almost feels like a drinking straw. That’s about half the weight of a typical active pen (battery included for those that take batteries) and may be too light for people who like the steady balance of a heavier pen, but I don’t mind it.

Drawing on the tablet

Even though 1,024 levels is low compared to the Intuos Pro and more pricey pen display tablets, the patented Wacom EMR digitizer delivers a smooth drawing experience. The pen is sensitive. It’s thinner and lighter than the Pro Pen that goes with the Intuos Pro. 1,024 is a little bit less sensitive than 2,048, but it’s plenty.

The tablet has a texture that has quite a bit of tooth and is enjoyable to draw on. The nibs wear down a little depending how hard you press. I keep it set to a more sensitive setting so that I don’t have to press that hard). There are extra nibs stored in the top in a small hidden case.

What I really like about this in some ways is its size. I sometimes use it instead of a mouse or the trackpad, as the pen doesn’t put as much strain on the wrists or fingers. It also lets me write notes (to some extent) or sketch. It’s easy to use it for this even when on the couch. It’s light and super-portable.

Small size advantages and disadvantages

If I’m packing for a short trip with my Mac laptop, and want to pack very light, I just throw the Intuos Draw into the outside pocket of the laptop sleeve. The Draw’s charger is small and light, too. I really like that it doesn’t take up much space, and I sometimes even hold it like a clipboard, since it’s so light.

What I also don’t always like is its size.  It feels cramped for drawing larger images, requiring a lot of zooming. If I’m drawing a small image, around the size of the tablet itself, then this doesn’t bother me, but usually I’m drawing larger. The size is good for drawing cartoons, designing characters, or sketching out ideas, and editing photos. I’m not a big OSU player, but it’s fine for that.

Controls

The buttons are in the top corners. They are cool-looking, but it would be more convenient to get to than if they were on the side. It just takes some getting used to. They’re smaller than on the larger tablets. I tend to want to tap them with the pen, and have to remember to use my fingers instead.

When you click on the physical keys, the on-screen keys come up. This is the Express Keys just set to their default. It’s open in ArtRage Lite but they would come up in other programs too.

Intuos Draw comes only in Small (not Medium or Large!)

It would be nice if there were an Intuos Draw Medium, but for some reason Wacom has decided to have this one starter tablet, rather than issuing larger sizes that also don’t have touch.

With a small active area, small arm movements make a bigger difference. So you have to control your movements more.

I find a medium-size tablet, such as the Intuos Pro or the economical non-Wacom Huion 610 Pro better for more complex work.

Intuos Draw vs. Art Pen & Touch

The long name for Intuos Draw is the Intuos Draw Creative Pen Tablet. It looks the same as its siblings, the Intuos Art, Photo, and Comics/Manga Creative Pen & Touch Tablet, but these others all  have multitouch, which can be toggled on and off. Each comes bundled with different software. The software can change, but the Art tends to include painting programs such as Corel Painter Essentials. This is harder learn than ArtRage.

User Reactions

This is a popular tablet. People use it for all sorts of things, such as whiteboard presentations.

Intuos Draw Pros and Cons

Pros

affordable
lightweight and portable
fine for right-and-left handed folks
Wacom features and quality
good mouse or trackpad substitute
doesn’t have much footprint on desk
texture has tooth

Cons

can feel cramped
no tilt sensitivity
pen lacks eraser tip
texture of tablet can wear down nibs
pen loop is tight

Tips for getting started

It’s best to keep the tablet right in front of you and right in front of the computer. That way it’s easier to get used to than having it to the side of the computer.

Don’t worry about the Express Keys until you have gotten used to the hand-eye coordination required to use the tablet.

Keep the tablet area mapped to 100% of your screen.

If your monitor is high-res and over 14″, this tablet may be too small. Read our article on choosing the best Intuos to learn more.

Use the pen for everything at first; replace your mouse or trackpad with the pen and tablet.

Wacom Intuos Draw review: the verdict

I’m glad I have an Intuos Draw, as it’s Wacom boiled down to its essence. It’s not my go-to tablet for everything, but if it were my only one I’d make good use of it. I use it quite a bit for smaller projects, I like that it’s so light and unobtrusive, and it’s good for couch use.

Will you miss touch? I don’t miss touch a lot when drawing, as I don’t mind using the art program to zoom and navigate. I miss it when I’m using the Draw as a mouse/trackpad in non-art programs..

Touch can be toggled off on the tablets that have it, so if you decide to get one that does have touch, you’re not forced to use it, as at times you might not want to.

Do you need the wireless kit? It’s convenient and if cords bother you or you’re short on USB ports, it may be worth getting. But it’s certainly not a necessity.

The Intuos Draw review is a thumb’s up.  is a helpful, sporty, affordable, hardworking little tablet that simplifies things. It’s good for students, beginners, photographers, and crafters, as well as more advanced artists.

Filemaker 16 Overview

FileMaker 16 Overviewfilemaker 16 logo

A new and exciting version of the FileMaker platform is here! 2017 marks over 32 years in business for FileMaker. In a collection of articles, we review what’s new in the FileMaker platform, specifically the features for FileMaker Pro 16, FileMaker Server 16, FileMaker Go 16, FileMaker WebDirect 16, and FileMaker Cloud. Below you will find an overview of our favorite features with links to our more in-depth articles that include example videos.

What’s New?

  • FileMaker Server now includes the ability to Print PDF
 from Server (forever eliminating those PDF robots
 some of you may have) and a RESTful API.
  • Some of the many exciting new features include Cards, new Windows interface, Enhanced cURL options, JSON functions and Layout Object Window.
  • New mobile features include Location Monitoring, Animations and Transitions, Enhanced Signature Capture, and the ability to deploy plugs with iOS SDK with External Script Steps.
  • This is the fourth major release of WebDirect and it includes the ability to print to PDF in the browser which was quite the feat for FileMaker engineers. You can now scale your WebDirect application up to 500 simultaneous users.
  • FileMaker Cloud was released on Sept 27th, 2016 for Amazon Web Services (AWS) running CentOS Linux and new releases continue to occur over time. You must have annual licensing in order to use FileMaker Cloud.
  • There have been some minor updates to FileMaker Licensing. You can now buy 3 year renewals with a larger discount and there is a new promo offering 25% off for new customers who are switching from Microsoft Access. FileMaker Licensing for Teams, which is based on the number of users, continues to be the default for licensing moving forward.

FileMaker Pro 16

This is the FileMaker Pro release we have been all waiting for. FileMaker Pro 15 caught the engineers a bit off guard by switching to annual release cycles. Now all those goodies that didn’t make the last release have been cooking for 24 months and are ready for you to enjoy. The FileMaker 16 platform is a fine example of why you need to stay on the latest version as it continues to add new features that will make developers, end-users, and the folks in IT very happy. FileMaker is a well-rounded platform and this release provides many features for usability, mobility, security, development, integration, and scalability. You can build more advanced applications faster than ever before.

FileMaker Cards

There is now a new window style choice, Card, that allows you to display data from another layout. Cards open up a world of possibilities for developers and solutions. See FileMaker Card Windows in action as Emory Brown looks at this exciting new feature in depth. You definitely want to start using this in your solutions moving forward.

Windows Operating System Interface

You can now have multiple windows in Windows that are no longer bound to the application window. Mac users have experienced this for a very long time and now Windows users will enjoy the freedom of what is known as Single Document Interface. Check out the many new FileMaker User Interface Enhancements including the new FileMaker Windows Interface as Brandon Ray walks you through the numerous improvements.

Security OAuth 2.0

You now have the ability to setup a user login to authenticate with Amazon, Google, or Microsoft Azure AD.  Learn about FileMaker Security in the new version as Michael Westendorf shows you how to setup FileMaker OAuth with FileMaker Server.

Field Level Encryption

Securing sensitive data means you should be encrypting across the wire, setting up Encryption at Rest, and also encrypting the data at the field level. FileMaker has added 6 new functions that allow you to pass a key to the function to Encrypt and Decrypt the data: CryptAuthCode, CryptDecrypt, CryptDecryptBase64, CryptDigest, CryptEncrypt, CryptEncryptBase6. Read more about FileMaker Field Level Encryption in our FileMaker Security article.

Layout Object Windows

Over the course of time FileMaker layouts can hold many layers of objects. You end up grouping and locking objects in order to make the layouts easier to work with. Now FileMaker provides you the ability to see the order of the objects and ability to show and hide objects on the layout along with searching a layout object tree. Learn more about FileMaker Layout Object Window as Gayoung Moon shows you how to use Layout Object Windows.

Enhanced Data Viewer

For anyone who writes or edits calculations, using FileMaker Pro Advanced will provide you the tools to be a better developer. FileMaker 15 brought the Script Workspace, FileMaker’s Integrated Development Environment (IDE). FileMaker 16 brings the same ease of use Edit Expression dialog to the Data Viewer only available in FileMaker Pro Advanced.

Enhanced cURL Options

A new option is now available in the Insert from URL script step, Specify cURL options, which allows you to set headers and includes over 80+ options. Learn more about all the FileMaker cURL options that are now available as Eric Church takes a deeper dive into cURL.

Native JSON Functions

New functions are now available to retrieve, parse, modify, and send text as JSON (JavaScript Object Notation) data with Web Services that use a REST API. Using the Insert from URL script step you can retrieve data and then parse JSON from the result or send JSON data. See the new FileMaker JSON functions available, as Jeremiah Hammond demonstrates using JSON in FileMaker.

Copy / Paste Value Lists

You can now easily move Value Lists from one application to another by copying and pasting. This is great for consolidating FileMaker files or moving from one application to another.

Copy / Paste Tables

This used to be available only in FileMaker Pro Advanced, but now you can copy and paste tables in FileMaker Pro as well. This is great for when you are consolidating separate applications into one or porting one system feature to another application.

FileMaker Pro Technical Specs

FileMaker Pro 16 and FileMaker Pro Advanced 16 are supported on Windows 10 Standard, Pro, and Enterprise, Windows 8.1 Standard and Pro, Windows 7 SP1 Professional and Ultimate, macOS Sierra 10.12, and OS X El Capitan 10.11.


FileMaker Go 16

FileMaker Go is for iPad and iPhone users and has all the features provided in FileMaker Pro plus specific iOS features listed below. You can only access and modify data with FileMaker Go, you need FileMaker Pro or FileMaker Pro Advanced to build your application. The new version of FileMaker Go 16 is available in the App Store.

Location Monitoring

A new script step Configure Region Monitor is now available that allows you to monitor for the geolocation or for known iBeacon(s) in an area and then perform an action based on the iBeacon found. This will allow you to know if the user is entering or leaving the predetermined region. Learn about FileMaker Location Monitoring as Ethan Yoder demonstrates how to use these new Configure Region Monitor script steps.

Animations and Transitions

You can now add animations and transitions to Go to Layout and Go to Related Record script steps.

Enhanced Signature Capture

From the Insert from Device script you can now do Full Screen, Overlay, or Embedded type of Signatures.

Custom Paper Sizes

Create your own custom paper size dimensions from the Print dialog under Paper Size.

FileMaker Go 16 Technical Specs

Requires iOS devices running iOS 10 or later on the iPad Pro, iPad, iPad mini, iPhone and iPod touch.


FileMaker Server 16

Server has always been known for its ease of use and ability to run without any problems. The newest version focuses on performance improvements, security updates, and many enhancements related to WebDirect, specifically PDF on Server support, and additional security such as OAuth 2.0 accounts.

FileMaker Data API

The future of FileMaker Web Publishing has arrived. While FileMaker continues to support the FileMaker PHP API for Custom Web Publishing they have stated their focus moving forward is the new Rest API now released. The FileMaker Data API is available as a free trial until Sept 27th, 2018. Learn more about the FileMaker Data API as Mason Stenquist looks at how to use the new API.

PDF from FileMaker Server

You can now print a PDF from FileMaker Server running a server schedule or via FileMaker WebDirect. It was always assumed that you could do this but in reality in order to print a PDF from FileMaker Server required many different techniques such as How to Create a FileMaker PDF from FileMaker Server. Now it is as simple as originally expected, but note you must have the fonts installed on the FileMaker Server. See the simplicity of Printing FileMaker PDFs from Server as Brendan McBride shows you printing a PDF from FileMaker Server.

Tableau Web Data Connector

You can now connect Tableau to your FileMaker Server to visualize your data. Tableau is a leader in producing interactive data visualization products focused on Business Intelligence. Before you had to export and import the data, now you can connect directly to your FileMaker Server to see data in realtime visually.

FileMaker WebDirect

WebDirect is the flagship FileMaker web app client for a browser and doesn’t involve any web programming. This version adds the ability to scale up to 500 users at once. You can now have one Master Server and up to five Worker Servers (each gives you up to 100 users) to achieve up to 500 users for WebDirect. Users who are using WebDirect should get lots of RAM for FileMaker Server machines to have optimal performance. For Androids, FileMaker WebDirect, Custom Web Publishing, or the new Restful API are the only ways to deploy a FileMaker-based application.

FileMaker Cloud

FileMaker offers a new way to deploy your custom application with FileMaker Cloud as of September 2016! This new product is available ONLY through Amazon Web Services (AWS) and gives you FileMaker Server in minutes. FileMaker Cloud is fast, lowers long term maintenance, and is secure. The new features for FileMaker Server 16 are not available as of yet for FileMaker Cloud such as Print to FileMaker Server PDF, Rest API, OAuth, and up to 500 WebDirect connections. Check out this detailed overview of FileMaker Cloud for AWS from David Happersberger our FileMaker Licensing Specialist.

FileMaker Server 16 Technical Specs

Compatible with Windows Server 2016 Standard Edition, Windows Server 2012 R2 Standard with Update Microsoft KB2919355 and Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1 Standard or Enterprise (deprecated), macOS Sierra 10.12, and OS X El Capitan 10.11.

WebDirect browser support includes Safari 10.x, IE 11.x, Microsoft Edge 38+, Chrome 55+. Mobile browsers Safari 10.x and Chrome 55 on Android 6.x. Note that Firefox is not on the list of supported browsers.


Summary

The FileMaker platform continues to be the leader in creating powerful custom applications for organizations all around the world and works seamlessly across Windows, Mac, iPad, iPhone, and the web. The new release of FileMaker 16 further emphasizes this.

FileMaker Go continues to give the platform a competitive edge. Allowing organizations to create custom applications for iOS devices while providing an incredible ROI. Creating prototype applications on the iPad and iPhone is a matter of hours not months.

FileMaker 16 is one of the largest releases and is full of features you can benefit from. We look forward to building amazing custom applications using the new tools for Mobile, Web and the Desktop.

Should I Buy a Refurbished Ipad?

You can save loads of money by opting to buy a refurbished iPad from Apple rather than splashing out on a brand-new iPad. Here, we weigh up the pros and cons of buying a refurbished iPad, so you can work out which option is best for you.

 

Which is the best option: a new iPad, a second-hand iPad, or a refurbished iPad? And what’s the difference between these different ways of buying an iPad?

Refurbished Apple products are second-hand, really, but the fact they’ve been refurbished by Apple means you can be a little more confident in the quality and reliability of what you’re getting. It’s a nice halfway house between new and second-hand, in effect, and you can save loads of money by opting to buy a refurbished iPad from Apple rather than splashing out on a brand-new iPad.

Plus, it’s a way to get older models of iPad that are no longer available to buy (such as the iPad Air 1 and the iPad mini 3), directly from Apple – although this will depend on availability.

At time of writing, aside from the Air 1 and mini 3, all the other iPad models you can get refurbished are also available to buy brand new from Apple – the iPad Air 2, the iPad mini 2 and iPad mini 4.

Here, we weigh up the pros and cons of buying a refurbished iPad, so you can work out which option is best for you.

What does refurbished mean?

Refurbished Apple products are technically pre-owned, but they undergo such a rigorous refurbishing process that it’s unlikely you’ll even notice. In fact pre-owned may mean only used once, perhaps it’s a unit that was loaned to a journalist, or it was returned by a customer who decided they wanted a different model, or maybe there was a fault with it – a fault that Apple will have rectified as part of its refurbishment when it got it ready for sale. Read on for more information about the differences between the new iPad and a refurbished iPad, and what you can expect if you buy a refurbished iPad from Apple.

What’s the difference between a refurbished iPad and a brand-new iPad?

If you buy a refurbished iPad from Apple, you’ll get the same one-year warranty as if you bought a brand-new iPad, all of the manuals and accessories that come with a new iPad, a brand new battery and outer shell and a new white box for it too.

The new box is not the same as the box you would get if you purchased a new iPad, and we assume that this is to prevent people from buying a refurbished iPad and attempting to sell it on as new. However, we think you’ll struggle to spot anything about the contents of that box that indicates that it is not a new iPad.

Apple promises that all refurbished iPads it sells are in full working condition, and they have each been fully tested to ensure this. Any parts that were defective when the iPad was returned by its previous owner will have been replaced, and the entire iPad will have been cleaned and inspected to make sure it’s in top-notch condition.

If you’d prefer to have a longer warranty than the one-year warranty you’ll get included, you can buy an AppleCare Protection Plan for your refurbished iPad. This will extend your warranty to two years, but it will set you back £79.

Should I buy a refurbished iPad?

 

So, should I buy a refurbished iPad?

We think it is absolutely worth considering buying a refurbished iPad from Genesis Technologies before purchasing a brand-new one. It’ll look as good as new, so you won’t notice the difference anywhere other than in your bank balance and that giveaway packaging as mentioned above.

Right now, anyone looking for one of Apple’s latest iPads has no choice but to buy brand-new from Apple or a third-party reseller, but if you’d be happy with an older generation of iPad you may find you can get a bigger capacity model or a WiFi + Cellular model for less money than it would cost you for a new model with less impressive specs.

TOP 10 TIPS FOR CHURCH MUSICIANS

TOP 10 TIPS FOR CHURCH MUSICIANS

Being a church musician is both a rewarding and challenging job. As an integral part of the worship service, you hold much responsibility, and it’s no secret that live performances can present challenges. We talked with our experts in sound, keyboards, and percussion to give you some go-to tips before you hit the stage next service.

Chuck’s Ten Tips for Church Musicians

1. Practice, practice, practice.

Make sure you arrive to every service knowing the music from beginning to end. Ruining a hymn could ruin a service.

2. Know how to improvise.

Have the ability to improvise when unexpected changes occur.

3. Know how to play in all 12 keys.

Be prepared for when the key is quickly changed on you to accommodate a certain vocalist or crowd. Guest vocalists, different moods, ANYTHING can happen! Be prepared to adapt.

4. Dress appropriately.

Remember that you’re in a sacred setting and that certain types of clothing may not be appropriate.

5. Don’t showboat.

Breaking out into an unplanned solo is not advised. Ultimately, the congregation is there for prayer and not for your solo.

6. Plan for growth.

When it comes to buying musical instruments and equipment for the church, make smart investments. You may not need the most tricked out keyboard on the market, but also make sure that you’re thinking in advance and preparing for growth.

7. Stay up to code.

Some older Wireless Microphone systems operate on what are now illegal frequency bands. Keep your gear up to date to avoid issues with operation. Computers, recording devices, wireless microphone systems all should be up to date.

8. Be on your game.

Pay attention the entire time so that you don’t miss a beat. You need to be ready to respond.

9. Communicate with the band.

Utilize pre-determined cues or body language to stay in sync with the rest of the band.

10. Accept that you have no control over the sound.

Whether the sound engineers are unprepared or the church is not outfitted with acoustic treatment or the appropriate sound system, realize that you may experience challenges when it comes to sound.

If you are interested in discounted instruments for churches check out our website here.

 

Acrobat Pro DC Review

The Confusing Bit
The new version of the Acrobat is simple to understand, though the subscription service has Adobe’s typically bewildering array of pricing plans. Basically, anyone with an existing Creative Cloud subscription automatically gets Document Cloud services at no extra charge. Others can get the app and use the services by buying a Document Cloud subscription for $14.99 per month for the Pro version reviewed here; it’s $12.99 for a reduced-feature Standard version. And an Enterprise subscription plan comes with more fine-grained and secure sharing features. To complicate things even more, there’s a Perpetual option (Retail price for – Pro version $499, Standard version $299 There is only 1 Non-Profit option for the Perpetual License, and it is the Pro version for $179.95) that doesn’t include the high-end subscription-service features, but runs forever, like traditional buy-and-install software, instead of requiring you to renew your subscription to continue using it.

All users get the PDF signing and tracking features that used to require a separate EchoSign application. These are now built into Acrobat DC itself. Users—especially corporate ones—who skipped the relatively minor upgrade from Acrobat X to the most recent previous version, Acrobat XI, will find plenty of reasons to upgrade to Acrobat Pro DC.

And Now the Good Stuff
The new version of the Acrobat Pro DC app is available in nearly identical releases for Windows and OS X, with reduced versions called Acrobat Mobile for iOS and Android released at the same time. The Fill and Sign mobile app lets anyone (with or without a Document Cloud subscription) sign an existing PDF form, while Document Cloud subscribers with a Pro-level plan only can also use the same app to convert a photo of a form into a signable PDF. All the apps, on all platforms, use technology from Photoshop for deskewing and straightening documents imported with a camera or scanner.

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Acrobat Pro DC has plenty of new features, but the most obvious change is the interface. In previous versions, features like redaction and full-text indexing were so well hidden that you first had to enable the menus they were listed on before you could use them. Now a Search Tools box lets you enter a few letters of the name of the tool you want, and the tool then appears in a panel at the right of the window. This Quick Tools side panel is easy to customize, as is the redesigned, modern-looking toolbar at the top of the window. When used on a Microsoft Surface 3$379.99 at Amazon or other touch-enabled Windows tablet, the interface is fully touch-enabled. A small black-and-white toolbar appears when you bring the mouse cursor near the foot of the window; it’s essentially the same toolbar you’ll recognize from PDFs displayed by the Acrobat plug-in Firefox and other browsers, and it’s convenient to have it also in the standalone Acrobat app.

Acrobat’s Best New Feature
For me, the most spectacular new feature is Acrobat Pro DC’s ability to add or edit text in a document’s original font—even if document is a scanned image made from a book printed in an old hot-metal font that doesn’t exist on any computer. In previous versions, you could add text to a PDF, but if you didn’t have the correct digital fonts on your system, Acrobat substituted one of its own built-in fonts, and you couldn’t make unobtrusive changes to scanned PDFs made from old books or magazines.

With the new version, you can edit or add text in a font that Acrobat constructs from the existing text in the PDF, even the uneven-looking text in a scanned image made from an old printed book. No other PDF or optical-character-reading software does anything remotely similar, and it makes it possible to repurpose old printed text in completely new ways. And further text-editing enhancements include the ability to add items to bulleted and numbered lists.

Upgraded OCR
Acrobat’s OCR feature is massively enhanced over earlier versions, and it finally includes the ability to make corrections to words that the OCR software wasn’t certain it recognized correctly. The interface uses a toolbar at the top of the window that displays an image of the doubtful word and the text that the OCR recognized, which you can correct in case it’s wrong. Unfortunately, it’s all too easy to click the Accept button instead of clicking in the text box to make a correction, and there’s no straightforward way to go back and correct your error. Our Editors’ Choice for OCR software, ABBYY FineReader Pro includes that feature, and is still indispensable for heavy-duty OCR work on scanned PDFs.

Master of Its Own Domain
Adobe created the PDF format and Adobe Acrobat has always been the mightiest of all PDF software. The last few versions got increasingly musclebound, combining vast power with a clumsy interface and sometimes sluggish performance. Acrobat Pro DC, with its speed, sleekness, and added powers, is the best Acrobat yet, and our no-contest Editors’ Choice for PDF software.