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Thread: Care and feeding of your Transformer

  1. #1
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    Care and feeding of your Transformer

    Part 1
    Introduction.

    This information is based on experience and experiments with my own TF101 (sold it and replaced with a TF201, both with docks), and I also provide direct support for over 15 other Transformers, (various models). In addition, I have been called to help with several Transformers owned by associates of my customers, so my hands-on experience level is pretty broad and expanding all the time.

    My TF201 as well as the other Transformers are all running very well, and as of 6/9/12, all are on ICS, (and running VERY well). 2 did need factory resets at some point. 4 are rooted. A few developed issues early on that were quickly resolved. Currently, not one of these Transformers is experiencing shutdowns, reboots or the various other problems reported on the forum. 3 of the systems had experienced problems in the past, including my TF201 (lasted one week back in December '11) but all are currently crash free. When I received my Prime in December I had 3 browser crashes and several reboots and those problems were quickly resolved in December. For the first week I had my Prime it also was experiencing the problem with turning completely off by itself.

    I should add that on average all of these are being used at least 80% for business productivity and 20% or less for pleasure/fun.

    These are all only recommendations and suggestions. You can take all, some or none. Note that once you have a problem some of these suggestions may not help at all. These suggestions are intended to prevent problems. But if you follow these and don’t go totally crazy with the apps you should be fine. If you are already experiencing problems the best avenue is a factory reset and DO NOT allow the apps to be reinstalled automatically.


    The process -- Expanded versions are at the end of Part 2 with additional explanation.

    1. Every week completely power down or at least restart by holding the power button down beyond where it asks the question about power off and it will restart.

    2. Once every month or 2 consider a hard reset.

    3. A must have app, imo, is Auto Airplane Mode, (by DON). Every one of the TFs I support has WiFi set to keep on during sleep, always. More on this later.

    4. Do not wait for Google to tell you an app has an update. (The Amazon Market does a better job of notifications).. When you go to the Google apps list and it displays apps at the top for updates, tap on the large window for each app and you will get an explanation of what was changed or fixed. I suggest doing the updates from that screen, one at a time and do a restart after every 5 updates.

    5. Do backups, using the App Backup app at least once a month. Keep the most recent copy on an SD card, or better yet put a copy on your computer.

    6. If you find it necessary to do a factory reset, don't allow your TF to automatically sync back all your apps. I found that the restore, either from Google Play or from the backup, will go more smoothly if you do it in relatively small batches and restart your TF between batches. 5 or 10 at a time will/should work well.

    7. Charging. Everyone has his or her own way of doing it, that's fine. I'll tell you what is working for these units, see the expanded version below. For more on battery charging you can also refer to this thread by Janner43




    So what are these users primarily doing with their Transformers? Here is a partial list:

    President of a commercial property management company, (shopping centers for the most part), mostly presentations, using various apps, including CAD drawings. (also using it as a PIM and PDA) which is one of my biggest uses as well. This user makes extensive use of the camera.

    VP of an Engineering company, tracking statistics from surveys in the field, demos of projects and VPN back to the corporate office for documents. Considering rolling Transformers out to all the field personnel.

    Doctor, exam room diagnostic notes. Pocket Cloud Remote and Pocket Cloud Explorer to another office.

    Photographer, storing and checking photos in the field, (primary use) uses lots of SD Cards, also mail and LogMeIn Ignition. (Former iPad2 user).

    Electrical contractor, (3 primes with docks) Field people using mail, Google Talk and video to show sites to estimators in the office, taking pictures and sending to a common box.net account for the ultimate in collaboration. Also using Pocket Cloud explorer to remotely access files on their server. (Very slick by the way. The easiest VPN I've ever seen). 1 former iPad2 user and 3 former iPhone users. The company has gone Android across the board.

    Part2

    Background
    If you’re interested. (or haven’t fallen asleep by now)
    So who am I? In short I have owned and run a very low key but very successful computer company since 1989. These days you might call it a boutique computer company. I have always done business only with businesses and their employees and don't deal with the general public, never even had a phonebook listing. My customers lean on me for advice on ways to get more from their computers and employees. I did not attempt to sell any of my customers a tablet. They came to me. In fact some of my customers have asked me if they should get a tablet and I have said no to the majority of them.


    Expanded versions with explanations and additional reasoning.

    1. Every week completely power down or at least restart by holding the power button down beyond where it asks the question about power off and it will restart. Other than the restart, all of the aforementioned Transformers stay on all the time. This is exactly the same recommendation I have for anyone using a PC, except for the on all the time part. Most of these Transformers never get turned off.

    2. Once every month or 2 consider a hard reset. There may be a few settings that may change, like screen timeout, but your TF will get totally refreshed. It turns out that one of my customers was doing it every other day. Claims I told him to, NOT. But his TF101 is running like a champ so who am I to suggest he not to do it.

    3. A must have app, imo, is Auto Airplane Mode, (by DON). Every one of the Transformers listed has AAM installed. With their current configurations they suffer a battery loss with a blanked screen of 2%-3% over night. There are no active wallpapers, no task killers or other special battery apps installed other than Dual Battery Widget. Every one of them has WiFi set to keep on during sleep, always. In typical business use, with the dock they are getting 15-17 hours of actual use between charges depending on what they are doing. Those without the dock are getting 7-9 hours. Any one Transformer may get 7 hours use then after the next charge may get 8 or 9 hours. Again, it depends on usage.

    4. Do not wait for Google to tell you an app has an update. (The Amazon Market does a better job of notifications). I have roughly 170 apps on my TF201 and hardly a weekday goes by that at least 1, (some days as many as 5 or more), update doesn't show up and still there are many of those that say they are now 4.0 (ICS) compliant or fixed bugs, some quite serious. I check for updates every day, as do many of my customers. Anyone who has read some of my posts have noticed the number of problems I attribute to incompatibilities of the apps. So few devices actually have ICS the developers have been a little slow to update. The number of apps with bug and compatibility fixes back that up. The best thing you can do is make absolutely certain everything is up-to-date. When you go to the Google apps list and it displays apps at the top for updates, tap on the large window for each app and you will get an explanation of what was changed or fixed. I suggest doing the updates one at a time and do a restart after every 5 updates.

    One of the TF101 owners took me to lunch to pick my brain about how he could get even more productivity than he already was getting. He had 15 apps awaiting updates, no notifications he could remember. This was pre ICS, not that it matters. He didn’t appear to have that many apps installed, but he is currently uninstalling those he hasn’t used recently.

    5. Do backups, using the App Backup app at least once a month, It's a good insurance policy against an unforeseen problem. (They are never planned, that's why it's insurance). Keep the most recent copy on an SD card, or better yet copy it to your computer. One of the primary reasons for using that app is that it copies nearly all of your apps, the settings for those apps, and the data associated with those apps. A system that had to be factory reset can be made whole again in around 30 minutes in a pinch. Do keep in mind that that app will NOT backup other data like documents, photos or any other data you copied to your TF. For that reason copy the data to your TF rather than moving it and there will be far less to worry about. In other words, since the data on my Prime is also on my computer I would not be upset if I had to do a factory reset as I actually have a backup. Otherwise copy those files to a safe place first as they will be gone after the factory reset.

    6. If you find it necessary to do a factory reset, don't allow your TF to automatically sync back all your apps. Through several days of experimentation with three Primes I had in my office for 2 weeks, I found that the restore, either from Google Play or from the backup, will go more smoothly if you do it in relatively small batches and restart your TF between batches. 5 or 10 at a time would probably work well. True computer enthusiasts wipe their systems once or twice a year because they simply run better after wiping the system, so don't be afraid to do it if something begins to get wonky and you can't figure it out. It may ultimately save you time and cut your losses.

    7. Charging. Everyone has his or her own way of doing it, that's fine. I'll tell you what is working for these units, which doesn't mean you need to follow this. No dock, down to 20%-30% then charge, (you can certainly go lower or higher), with a dock most are letting the dock get to 0% and the tablet to 30%-40% and charging using the dock. That's also the way I'm doing it. The battery use on the Primes is roughly the same as with the TF101s. 90% or more of the time it's in balanced mode with 40%-50% brightness on the slider. (A few are on auto brightness)

    Disclaimer
    Using the above suggestions is not a guarantee that you won’t have problems just like not doing them doesn’t mean you will. There is no way to tell what you may have installed in the past that may be a problem. Last year a Google Maps update caused a ton of problems for a lot of the users on the forum but that problem along with others, has since been fixed with updates. I can tell you that the systems I mentioned are meant for business much more than pleasure and none of the users have installed anything all that fancy. None are using anything other than stock screen backgrounds as an example.

    Also keep in mind that most of these Transformers never had any problems at all. These Transformers are from different batches, with several different serial number prefixes, all have ASUS quick settings enabled. Most of these suggestions could also apply to a PC so don't look at them as if it shouldn't be necessary. That still doesn't mean you must do any of it.

  2. #2
    Ratchet
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    Hi Leshor, this info is helpful and handy though very comprehensive for a beginner
    so, I'm wondering can we copy and paste your info here on this page and keep it on our(my) home PC for back up reference if problems arise?
    Therefore can you help me with "copy and paste techniques" on my TF201 ? as I haven't been able to figure this out yet by guessing(lol)
    or ca
    t I copy and paste on my TF201?
    or can I?
    and if I can where can I find this help/instructions/directions
    thanks, if you can help
    mary
    P.S I just saved for offline reading!? is that what I do?
    I'd Like a copy and paste technique for some things!?
    Can we copy and paste stuff on TF201?
    thanks
    mary
    Last edited by mary.7; 04-24-2012 at 04:12 PM.

  3. #3
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    Yes Mary you can copy and paste with your Transformer. Did you ever read the user's manual? If not you will find a link for it in Leeshor's signature right above your post and in the user's manual you will find instructions for basic things like cut, copy and paste.

  4. #4
    Soundwave
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    Quote Originally Posted by leeshor View Post
    3. A must have app, imo, is Auto Airplane Mode, (by DON. Every one of them has WiFi set to keep on during sleep always.
    Thanks Leeshor,

    For the avoidance of doubt can you confirm whether the WiFi setting in point three above relates to the Tablet WiFi advanced setting or the AAM setting. I guess to be sure - what is your configuration for both the tablet WiFi advanced setting and AAM.

    Regards

    Clive
    __________________________________________________
    TF101(B70) 16Gb with keyboard dock, ICS 4.0.3, 32Gb SD
    HTC Desire
    Win7 I5 3.3Ghz quad processor, 8Gb RAM
    Raspberry PI pending

    __________________________________________________

 

 

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