Your Toolkit List
David Anders,The Computer Guy, a freelance systems engineer in Seattle, WA.
Resolves computer problems, assists with production issues, designs and installs networks.
Basic & Optional Tools
1] Current Mac OS Startup floppy, CD, Zip, or secondary hard drive

2] Current Mac OS Emergancy Startup floppy with additional files

Customized to contain Startup Disk control panel, SCSIProbe v5.11 control panel and Disk First Aid v8.2 application

3] System Install CD, System Install Floppies, or system installers and updaters on cartridge, CD or Zip disk

4] External CD, Zip drive, or Hard Drive with utilities and correct SCSI cabling


  • ..SCSIProbe v5.1.1, Freeware
  • ..Disk First Aid v8.2 or newer, Freeware Apple Computer included with system
  • ..Techtool v1.18, Freeware MicroMat,
  • ..Conflict Catcher v8.04, $79.95 7 day demo available Casady & Greene
One or more of the following:
  • DiskWarrior v1.03 (ships on bootable CD ) $79.95 Alsoft
  • Norton Utilities v4.03 (ships on bootable CD, can be put on Zip, or emergancy floppy ) $89.95 Symantec
  • TechTool Pro v2.11, (ships on bootable CD) $149.95 Micromat
  • Help! $89.95 An application that generates a report based on a database of conflicts and incompatibilities and details repair procedures. Finds damaged files, including fonts. Total Recall
  • MacMedic v1.5 (ships on bootable CD) $109.95 Total Recall
  • Virex v5.9.1 $54.95 Virus Utility - Protects and repairs viral infections. Network Associates
  • Norton AntiVirus 5.0.3 (ships on bootable CD) $89.95 Symantec
  • Guru - a free application from Newer Tech that details memory - RAM and VRAM for most Macs, clones and printers
  • Gauge Utilities - a free set of utilities (includes a RAM checker)
  • SpellTools - a free application for spell checking and text cleanup
  • IF THESE LINKS ARE BROKEN - Go to and search or go to and look in the Libraries
6] Substitute powercord, keyboard, keyboard cable, mouse, video cable, network cable, PRAM battery etc
Sad Macs, Bombs, and other Disasters, 3rd Edition by Ted Landau - PeachPit Press ($30.00)

INTERNET SITES: Mac Fixit - M-W-F problem reports, recommended utilities, bug list, updates, and tips MacIntouch - daily problem reports, bug list, updates, and tips Macintosh News Network - MacTips Column Macintosh Central - Various Column new site with troubleshooting help 6/98 Check for updates to your applications, utilities, and System software Check for conflicts between your applications, utilities, and System software Huge list of troubleshooting resources
APPLE TIL INTERNET SITES: Powerbook (bronze) TS Info
8] Have your basic troubleshooting directions and information on paper or another computer
Ohmmeter that tests batteries (~$30.00)
Three Prong Yellow Power Checker - (Most Hardware stores ~$5.00) - tells you if the polarity is correct and whether the ground is good.


Profile of computer - OS and application versions, utilities installed, utility used to format Harddrive
Copy of invoice for computer, peripharels, and software
Warranty information
Technical support contact information - phone and websites
12] Optional Tools to have on hand
1] $150.00 digital power supply checker (BlackBox Catalog)
2] RAM checker (or an Apple Service Provider which will check for a fee)
3] Cable checker ~ $150.00 (APS Technologies
4] Extension cord, surge protector, or power strip
Necessary Experience & Preparation
. An emergancy is a poor time to learn how to use emergancy tools - run all your utilities before the problem happens, verify that your emergancy disks work, check your alternate cables and hardware before you need them
. If a friend has a Mac &endash; share the costs of utilities and substitute cable/hardware with them
. Locate an Apple Service Center and become aquainted - take some cookies in, and ask how they can help you and how to best care for your system
. Locate a freelance Mac System Engineer and find out their fees and response time
.NoWonder offers a referral service for most Operating Systems -
. Have all the contact phone numbers for your hardware and software on hand - Tech Support numbers and websites

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The Computer Guy - Seattle WA