How To: Upgrade Macbook Pro

First thing: Identify your version Macbook.

RAM


Type:200-Pin DDR2 SO-DIMM
Speed:DDR2 667 [PC2 5300

The first upgrade is to put more RAM in your Macbook). You probably have at least 1GB, but 4GB is so cheap that there is no reason to upgrade. You can buy 2x2GB kit on Amazon for $38. You should know that first-gen (2006) models can only go up to 2GB, second-gen (late 2006-mid 2007) up to 3GB, and everything after June 2007 can use the full 4GB. Note: You can put in more RAM that your Macbook can address and faster speed, but you won’t get any performance gains. You should only do this if the bigger/faster is cheaper because there is more supply of the newer stuff.

Hard Drive


Warning: This process is complicated and not intended for people who are not comfortable taking apart a computer.
  • Step 1: Decide which hard drive to buy
  • Step 2: Find/buy the tools needed
  • Step 3: Get to work on upgrading

Identify

This part is important to find the right hard drive and to use the correct guide to disassemble your laptop to install the hard drive. There are two types of Macbook Pro (discrete and unibody). The discrete is all aluminum and bought before late 2009 October 14, 2008. The unibody was released early 2009 late 2008 and has a black bezel around the monitor.

Hard Drive

Western Digital Scorpio Black WD3200BEKT 320GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache 2.5” SATA 3.0Gb/s

Make sure not to choose one with a built-in shock/drop sensor. It will interfere with the sensor built-in to the laptop. I went with the Hitachi 7k320 because it was the best value, but it isn’t the best performance. I would have gone with the WD Scorpio Black for best performance. These are all 320gb 7200rpm hard drives, which are the best performance/value ratio right now. Research more about these hard drives with this comparison at Tom’s Hardware.

  1. WD Scorpio Black
  2. Seagate Momentus 7200.3
  3. Hitachi Travelstar 7K320

Tools Needed

  1. Phillips #00 Screwdriver - eyeglass screw size
  2. T6 Torx Screwdriver - 6-point star shaped
  3. Spudger - or a flat rubber/plastic tool to pry off components that are taped down

Guide to Disassemble

I used the guide from iFixit. (PDF version)

Charlie the BlackBerry

Charlie Suwankosai
My friend Charlie Suwankosai dressed like a BlackBerry.
easiest $125 I have earned in a while… run around outside for an hour before the tampa lightning hockey game promoting blackberry.. then run around inside during the 1st period… then we got seats in the lower section and watched the rest of the game…

Permission Denied Error

In Firefox with the Firebug console open, you probably get “Permission denied to call method Location.toString”. This error will get thrown on any page that has a Flash file inside an iframe. The error is prevalent because many ROS ads (Doubleclick, etc.) are served in this exact way. Adobe has a JIRA bug open that they have marked with the absolute lowest priority possible (none) because “the error is cosmetic. Exposes no functional or security issues.”

The only solution/workaround is to avoid putting any iframes with Flash on your page. This solution doesn’t work for many developers who have no control over the way ads are served, but Adobe claims it isn’t really a problem.

See error on this example page. This example has a swf inside an iframe that is embedded with swfobject. keithlam.com and overrated.org both have the most permissive crossdomain files possible.

My Savings Account History

This is a historical graph of the interest rate on my savings account since I opened my ING Direct account on Sept. 13th, 2005 to today. I have since “day-traded” my savings accounts between ING, HSBC, e*Trade, and Capital One. The interest rates vary from a peak of 5.05% to a low of 2.5%. My rate was 3.75% as recently as Nov. 2008. Today I’m earning 3.01% with e*Trade.

interest
A graph of the interest rate of my savings accounts.

DateING DirectOther
09/13/053.30%
11/03/053.50%
12/08/053.75%
02/01/063.80%
03/31/064.00%
04/30/064.15%
05/31/064.25%
06/30/064.35%
08/21/064.35%5.05%
11/29/064.50%5.05%
07/19/074.30%5.05%
09/26/074.30%4.50%
11/01/074.20%4.50%
12/13/074.10%4.50%
12/20/074.10%4.25%
01/23/083.65%4.25%
01/29/083.65%3.80%
02/01/083.40%3.80%
02/04/083.40%3.55%
03/11/083.10%3.55%
03/19/083.00%3.55%
03/20/083.00%3.05%
06/02/083.00%3.50%
07/31/083.00%3.75%
10/09/082.75%3.75%
11/01/082.75%3.60%
12/01/082.75%3.32%
12/30/082.50%3.32%
01/10/092.50%2.75%
01/11/092.50%3.01%

Heisman & National Championship

I thought that winning the Heisman Trophy was like a curse because Heisman winners lose the national championship game. Apparently I was wrong because Leinart accomplished the feat pretty recently and it has happened 11 times. On the other hand, Jason White laid an egg in 2003 Championship when he won the Heisman, and tonight Sam Bradford wasn’t nearly as good as the rest of the season. Maybe it is just when Oklahoma quarterbacks win the Heisman, then they won’t win a championship…

National Championship and Heisman in the Same Year
Year Name School
1938Davey O’BrienTCU Horned Frogs
1941Bruce SmithMinnesota Golden Gophers
1943Angelo BertelliNotre Dame Fighting Irish
1945Doc BlanchardArmy Black Knights
1947John LujackNotre Dame Fighting Irish
1949Leon HartNotre Dame Fighting Irish
1976Tony DorsettPittsburgh Panthers
1993Charlie WardFlorida State Seminoles
1996Danny WuerffelFlorida Gators
1997Charles WoodsonMichigan Wolverines
2004Matt LeinartUSC Trojans
Source: Associated Content, Past Heisman Winners, Past National Champions

Facebook Pushing Gifts

Facebook has had gifts for sale for a couple years now, but they never really pushed them on users until today. The gifts are just pictures that show up on a user’s profile, but they give them special placement, so people like to pay the $1 to make a friend feel special. Today, Facebook put “Give Gift” as the default on a user’s profile when it is their birthday instead of the normal “Write” wall post. It was actually kind of hard to figure out how to not pay for a gift and just leave a normal post because I thought the box below the gifts the normal leave a wall post box. I’m sure that this is a good source of revenue for Facebook, because they are getting money for literally nothing (tangible at least).

birthday