surge protectors/dirty electricity?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Cindy, Jul 23, 2005.

  1. Cindy macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2003
    #1
    Can someone explain what "dirty electricity" is exactly? I'm off to Walmart today and see about getting this: http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.gsp?product_id=3371537
    that was talked about in another post a long time ago.
    But if I have dirty electricity - would this help?
    I'm not really aware of surges or brownouts here. Lights don't flicker or dim. But if they are very, very slight they could still be affecting my computer.
    I'm still getting static or zapping from my emac, every so often. And yes, I will take it into the shop if need be.
    But I keep thinking -- could this be from the electricity. Nothing else seems to be effected - TV etc.
     
  2. Cindy thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2003
    #2
    bought a UPS

    ok, went to Walmart and they didn't have anything that I wanted to spend money on and feel protected with it. I didn't want to order on line and wait for it to come in so I went to CompUSA and bought a UPS machine.
    Good thing too -- we are having some thunder storms and just as I shut down my computer - WHAM huge power surge from lightening!!
    Anyway, question.... on the hookup, it came with a usb cord with a phone hookup on the other end. But when I used that, I couldn't get a dial tone on computer. Soooo, this is how I have things hooked up: computer cord plugged into UPS, phone cord coming from house plugged into UPS, another phone cord plugged into UPS with other end going into computer.
    Is this ok? Am I covered??
    Now I need to install the software that came with it so that it will automatically shut down computer if need be.
     
  3. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #3
    The USB cord is for the software to manage shutdown of your computer if you're not there -- after X number of minutes the UPS sends a signal to the computer. Mostly, this software is Windows only, although your package may vary. Do not plug the USB/Phone cord thing into your phone outlet.

    The only time you use a phone cord to the wall is if you are using a dial up telephone modem, in which case if the UPS has a phone surge suppression feature it will protect the modem from a surge. If you are using a broadband internet connection, do not connect the modem.

    Please, read the manuals that came with the unit - it can answer your questions better than we.
     
  4. Cindy thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2003
    #4
    I just figured that part out -- usb is for the detection of software :eek:
    It's for either windows or the Mac. Although it was supposed to put it into the hd and it's not there. I'll have to re-do it and see where it went???
    The instructions that came with it SUCK!! I am on a dial up connection. So, I have to be hooked up with phone line.
    And yes, this UPS has a phone line protection.
    The instructions show the wall outlet going (phone line) going into the UPS and the usb port and another phone line cord going into the UPS and then into a phone (picture of a telephone) --- AH - thats got to be for a fax machine.

    Edited portion: oK, I found it. It stuck it into systems preferences in an area of its own. Thats cool.
    I guess I'll keep things hooked up the way it is since it's working. Unless any of you guys think not.
     
  5. Cindy thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2003
    #5
    I hate to even ask this question because it is going to sound SO dumb but the APC website doesn't answer it and tech. support doesn't work on weekends. So here goes.... (don't laugh).... Do I need to keep the usb port connected into the computer? The info is all downloaded.
     
  6. Capt Underpants macrumors 68030

    Capt Underpants

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2003
    Location:
    Austin, Texas
    #6
    Yes you do. This allows the UPS to shut down the computer.
     
  7. Cindy thread starter macrumors regular

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    Jun 5, 2003
    #7
    battery life

    The guy at the store said that the battery should be replaced every year. Is this true?
     
  8. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #8
    Alternatively, no, not necessary if you are not using the software shutdown feature.
     
  9. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #9
    They have to be replaced as they wear down and cannot hold a charge anymore -- 1 year is on the short side, but certainly by 3 - 4 years.
     
  10. Cindy thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2003
    #10
    Ok - I don't have many usb ports on emac. When I want to use the zip drive, I have to unplug something to use that and same goes for the scanner.
    So, same concept I guess.
    When I leave the computer, I'll plug in the shut down usb so that is in place when I'm not here. I always leave computer in sleep mode unless I'm gone for more than a few days.

    Also, how important is it to put laptops on UPS's? Obviously when you're away from home, you're not going to carry around a huge UPS machine. I guess, just don't use them during storms etc.
     
  11. Capt Underpants macrumors 68030

    Capt Underpants

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2003
    Location:
    Austin, Texas
    #11
    Or you could buy a USB hub.
     
  12. Cindy thread starter macrumors regular

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    Jun 5, 2003
    #12
    Very good idea :D
     
  13. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #13
    well, a laptop has its own battery so the battery back up portion of the UPS would be a bit redundant. You can get a good, small-sized surge suppressor for travelling, to filter out spikes and noise on the AC line.
     

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