Sunday, January 28, 2024


As mentioned earlier, I Sipped the Kool-Aid. And then I stumbled.

OpenCore Legacy Patcher's (OCLP) instructions are somewhat wanting. On a trip, I got a prompt that a new update to OCLP was available. Generally you don't need to install updates unless you are planning to upgrade to a new macOS that that update provides support for but, knowing me, I install them all.

The OCLP updates install automatically after you accept them but I was too aggressive. I got a prompt that something couldn't install because something else was already in progress. With no guidance from OCLP, I clicked the "Retry" button.


From Apple:
A prohibitory symbol, which looks like a circle with a line or slash through it, means that your startup disk contains a Mac operating system, but it's not a version or build of macOS that your Mac can use.
The MacBook wouldn't boot. Basically, the on-the-fly OCLP firmware patches weren't being installed and the MacBook Air 2015 wouldn't boot Ventura.

Being out of town, I didn't have the "magic" USB drive that I had used to install OCLP. Perhaps, with that I could have repatched the firmware.

Anyway, I had a MacBook brick for the rest of the trip. Thankfully, I had brought a Windows laptop as well.

Back at home, I still couldn't figure out how to repatch using the USB drive.

Finally, I just did a hard factory reset ( on the MacBook and rebuilt it. At least that was good practice and a check on my documentation.

There are lots of links on Google about how to reset a MacBook but they are usually telling you how to erase it. The above linked article will let you reset a bricked MacBook over the Internet. Pretty cool.

Sunday, January 21, 2024

Say No to iOS Apps

I had made a reservation for dinner at a local restaurant. They required Yelp to make the reservation. I used the restaurant's link on their website and it worked fine.

Then the trouble began.

The day before our reservation, I got the following text message from Yelp.

Here's the web page I got when I clicked that link on my phone.

No, I'm not going to install an app just to confirm a reservation.

So, I just replied "YES".

So the demand to install an app was just a bluff. Why would Yelp bluff you to install an app?

I found this reddit comment that explains it better than I can.
  • A website can't ask your OS for a list of installed apps and then sell it to the highest bidder.
  • A website can't nag you with useless notifications, unless you explicitly click "yes" on a scary-looking browser dialog.
  • A website can't access your phone's globally unique identifiers, nor can it collect stats about your battery to determine how likely you are to buy a new phone.
  • A website can't scan your phone's entire storage for interesting stuff after you grant it the permission to pull one photo from a directory.
  • A website can't put you on the "users to eventually ban" list if your phone is jailbroken or rooted.
  • A website can't download ads in the background to show them even if you are offline (even though the web tech to make offline sites actually exists).
Now, that's why don't I like to install apps.

Sunday, January 14, 2024

I Sipped the Kool-Aid

I've had an iPad for years. I've given up and moved to an iPhone, even enabling iMessage. Then I bought an Apple Watch.

Now I've gone and bought a Mac, actually a MacBook Air 2015. I got it CHEAP!
But the last macOS supported on the MacBook Air 2015 was Catalina 10.15.7. Not only haven't there been any security patches for Catalina for a while but it was 4 versions behind.

Then I found OpenCore Legacy Patcher (OCLP). OCLP is my kind of hack. Apple deprecates versions of their Mac hardware by requiring new but basically insignificant hardware. OCLP updates the Mac's firmware in memory to fake that the newly required hardware is present and then the new macOS runs without complaints. Even the performance is good.

But it's not for the faint of heart. As of this post, the installation instructions ( are for version 0.6.6 while the current version is 1.3.0. And some of the steps are implied rather than specified.

There are lots of other guides on the Internet but they all seem to assume a pretty good understanding of macOS.

So, if you're game, it works great.

My MacBook Air 2015 is running Sonoma 14.2.1.

Sunday, January 07, 2024


You'll recall my experiences recently with ValiDrive and the FAKE 512GB USB drive with USB A, USB C, and Lightning connectors. It only had capacity of 64GB.

Somewhat later, I was out of town and had an urgent need for a USB drive. In my traveling toolkit, I had a PHICOOL USB drive with an alleged 128GB and USB A, USB C, and Lightning connectors.

Now my SOP is to run ValiDrive on new USB drives. Again, this drive was FAKE only having 32GB of capacity and was ridiculously slow.

As I studied the PHICOOL drive I realized that I could open it. Here is what was inside.

But look at this!

A 32GB microSD card!

Run ValiDrive on EVERY USB drive that you buy, even on memory cards.