Apple-related - see here
for general PC news)
Oct 13 Mavericks: Installed Mavericks this morning. If you have
multiple Macs you should copy the file [Install OS X Mavericks.app]
from the Applications Folder to a local server before continuing with
the installation (the file is deleted after installation). Finder tabs
are useful - you can move a file by dragging it onto a tab.
- Little Snitch is disabled (update here)
- Flip4mac is disabled
- DiVX is disabled
- The coloured tags in Finder are less prominent
- Parallels below version 9 will not work!
- The Save (attachments) button in Mail has vanished. You
need to hover the mouse over the toolbar below the mail header (see screenshot at right) to access
the Save All & Quick Look items.
- Graphic Converter versions below 8 may not save filenames correctly. Update to version 8 here.
- Mouse scroll wheel not working in Preview (plus no scroll bars - I have to use a trackpad to scroll)
- Using Rebuild Mailbox in Mail is a disaster - it wants to reload all old messages
- Western Digital warns
about using its WD Drive Manager, WD Raid Manager, and WD SmartWare
software products with Mavericks and suggests customers uninstall those
applications before upgrading to Mavericks
- Cocktail maintenance app won't work. There is a free upgrade to the Mavericks version.
- 10 Oct 13: I have just lodged this complaint with the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (accc.gov.au) :
The software update for the iPhone (ios 7) prevents users from charging
their iPhone with non-Apple devices. There is no way to disable this
"feature" and no way to revert to a previous version of the software
(ios 6) due to blocks put in place by Apple. I now have several devices
that are useless with the iPhone including a car cradle that is needed
for safe hands-free use of the iPhone. There are many compliants about
this on the Internet and, so far, no indication from Apple that it
recognises there is a problem. For example see: https://discussions.apple.com/thread/5379648
Apple may claim this is a security feature but they should give users the option to turn it off.
I encourage other users to make similar complaints
- 18 May 13 Macrumours: Newly Discovered Mac Malware Captures and Stores Screenshots - seems unlikely to pose a threat
- 3 Feb 13: Battery died on your 2010-11 Macbook, Macbook Pro or Macbook Air? Try a firmware update before replacing it: Apple Issues SMC Firmware Update for MacBook, MacBook Pro, and MacBook Air Models.
- 25 Jul 12 Mountain Lion tips:
- Once it has downloaded and before your open it, copy the
IMG file to a backup directory. This file can be used to install ML on
other authorised Macs instead of using up your internet quota.
- Little Snitch needs to be upgraded ($) to version 3. It is in beta phase but seems to work OK
- Parallels 7 needs to be reinstalled. It will probably install an update while it is at it
- Mail updates the email database - probably irreversible
- BIG PROBLEM with using Mail with MS Exchange - don't upgrade to ML yet if you depend on Exchange
- All those programs that did not work with Lion will not work with ML
- Dosbox seems to work fine for running DOS programs
- No sign of a replacement for Front Row - Grrr!
- Software Updates are now performed via the App Store
- RSS feeds are dropped from Mail!
- Tidbits: OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion, the Little Details - including Save As is back (need to hold Option key), Autolock is gone (hooray),
- 28 Jun 12 New Blood Media: Seagate GoFlex Desk External Hard Drive: Failed to Reformat on Mac (thanks Boboduck)
- 19 Jun 12 EuroInvestor: How iOS 6 will hurt Google, Facebook, Skype ... + Cult of Mac: Seven Apps That Apple Just Killed With iOS 6. (well ... not "killed" just made redundant)
- 26 Apr 12: My tips for moving from Mobile Me to another web hosting service.
- 16 Apr 12 ZDNet: Apple releases Flashback malware removal tool, for OS X Lion only.
- 7 Apr 12 BBC: Half a million Mac computers 'infected with malware' - F Secure advice
- note that a recent Apple security update addressed this problem. Also
the malware will not work if you have Little Snitch, ClamAV or other
anti-virus software installed.
- 7 Apr 12 SMH: Storm brews over iCloud - address book problems. Use File/Export/Address Book Archive regularly!
- 27 Feb 12 MacRunours: Flashback [Mac] Trojan Returns With a Multi-Pronged Infection Strategy
- "Do you want content signed by Apple Inc to have access to your
computer?" (turn your Mac off if this pops up! - better still ensure
your OS X software is up-to-date)
- 8 Feb 12 Filemaker 11: Known issues
- Pre-Excel 2007 format (.xls) for export. This feature requires
Rosetta which is no longer supported in Lion. You need to change
the export format to Excel 2011.
- 24 Jan 12: NVU does not work in Lion - try Kompozer but don't use its Publish feature - use a dedicated FTP app like Captain FTP.
- 7 Dec 11 TidBits: BusyCal Brings iCloud Calendars to Snow Leopard " More concerning is that I lose Address Book syncing with any Macs that are not running Lion..."+ How to Lose and Recover iCloud Data + Take Control of iCloud
- 28 Nov 11: Lion is running well on my Macbook. I have Front Row running but have not yet got it to recognise the iTunes library. I also have (DOS) Open Accss 4 running using Boxer.
Also you will probably need to recompile any Applescript apps that you
have created. Annoyingly Lion put sa banned symbol across their icons
so make a copy of the app file and change its suffix to ".txt" to
preserve a copy of the icon (Get Info cmd-C on the source file icon and
cmd-v on the destination file icon to copy the icon to the new app
- 25 Nov 11 Tidbits: ZangZing Eases MobileMe Gallery Migration + Subtle Irritations in Lion.
- 25 Nov 11. I am experimenting with Lion on my Macbook. So far
it seems OK but I have yet to get Front Row and DOSBOX working. I also had difficulty buying Lion on a USB stick ("thumb drive") from an Apple Store and eventually bought one from the Online Apple Store.
- 19 Oct 11 Old Toad: Life After MobileMe
- Comment: on 30 June 2012 Apple is shutting down MobileMe and trying to force Mac
users to move to iCloud. iCloud can only be set up and managed with a
Mac running Lion (see comments below about problems with Lion). What is
more, iWeb and user web pages will vanish. I have several me.com web
pages and it will confuse people when the URL no longer works and there
is no facility to re-direction. Grrr! Google is starting to look good for contacts, calendars and web hosting.
- 20 Oct 11 About.com: Setting Up an iCloud Account on Your Mac + Getting iCloud's Mail Working on Your Mac. Note that iCloud will onlhy work if you are running Lion on your Mac and ios5 on your iPhone/iPad. See the cautions below about "upgrading" to Lion.
- 14 Oct 11 CNET: iOS 5 upgraders reporting installation hiccups -
try the direct firmware update instead of using iTunes BUT make sure
you have backed up your iPhone/iPad to iTunes before doing anything - the iOS update resets your device then you use iTunes to restore all your apps and data.
- 6 Oct 11 About.com: AirDrop With or Without a Wireless Connection - AirDrop
(Lion) Isn't Limited to a Wireless Network. DropCopy seems to do a
similar job for pre-Lion Macs - it is free in the App Store.
- 17 Aug 11 MacRumours: Apple Releases OS X 10.7.1 with Fixes for Video in Safari, Audio Out, Wi-Fi and More.
- 7 Aug 11SubRosaSoft: Create A Bootable Mac OS X 10.7 Lion Flash Drive - IF you are willing to jump (see below)
- 24 Jul 11 Before upgrading to Lion...
- 23 May 11 SMH: Mac malware alert: Apple devices 'easier to infect than Windows'?
[big ?] - A new "scareware" program called Mac Defender - and various
other names including Mac Protector - infects users via a web pop-up or
bogus Google Images...In many browsers the pop up will download the
malicious fake anti-virus program on to the users' machine
automatically. CNet: How to remove MacDefender fake antivirus program.
- 9 Apr 11 Apple Discussions:
Kernel panic from iPhone USB tethering - The latest iPhone iOS (4.3.2) causes Macbooks to crash (restart error
message!) when trying to use internet tethering (hotspot) via USB. You
will need to use wi-fi tethering until the problem is fixed by Apple. If you do experinece a crash make sure you do a Repair Permissions (using Disk Utility) as the crash leaves many open files in a mess. Update 20 Apr 11: Apple claims to have fixed the problem with the latest iPhone OS
- 6 Apr 11 Tidbits: Firefox 4 Improves, But Not Radically - Firefox 4 disables the great PDF Plugin (vieiwing PDFs within the Browser window). A pre-release version
of Firefox PDF Plugin for Mac OS X 1.2 (displays PDFs in the browser)
can be made to work by forcing Firefox 4 into 32 bit mode via Get Info
in the Finder. [32 bit is set by selecting Firefox.app from the
Application Folder in Finder, clicking Get Info and setting the check
box near the top of the Info window- this might slow browser
performance. Change to 32 bit setting BEFORE you click on this Plug-in link]
- 15 Mar 11 Apple is changing Mobile Me Calendars
in May and you will be forced to update to the new system. Trouble is
it wont work with the older iPhone 3G unless it is "upgraded" to IOS4 -
but many people say don't do this. Macworld has the answer - you need to delete the old Mobile Me Calendar "account" on the iPhone and create a new CalDAV account (server cal.me.com).
- 16 Nov 10 Microsoft: Microsoft Office for Mac 2011 14.0.1 Update
- This update fixes critical issues in Office 2011, including
issues that might cause Office 2011 applications to stop responding or
quit unexpectedly [might explain why Word kept crashing on me!]
- 27 May 10 BBC: Apple passes Microsoft to be biggest tech company.
- 30 Apr 10 Apple: [Steve Jobs] Thoughts on Flash
- 16 Mar 10 Filemaker: Filemaker
- finally some database features like charting that I was using in Open
Access nearly 25 years ago! The scripting language is still tedious but
- 31 Jan 10 CNET: Security
Update (2010-001) slowing Macs down? (see comments about
running routine maitenance - eg Cocktail
- 24 Nov 09 SMH: Malicious
copycat iPhone virus unleashed - jailbroken iPhones at risk
- 10 Nov 09 WP:
First iPhone worm targets modified handsets - The contagion,
dubbed "Ikee," spreads only among iPhones that have been
- 14 Oct 09 BBC: Data
losses in Snow Leopard bug - In the meantime, users should
delete previous guest accounts [before upgrading to SL] + MaxFixIt: How
to restore Lost home folder after logging in as guest in Snow Leopard.
- 5 Sep 09 WP: Apple
Updates Java, Backdates Flash - Leopard and Snow Leopard
- 10 Aug 09 Comment: I was looking for a better way
to keep an off-site backup of my Macbook Pro. I noticed that
Officeworks have the Lacie
320Gb Pocket Hard Drive on special for $99. The set-up for
the Mac is brilliantly easy.
It uses both USB ports, which is not a problem when I only use it for
backup purposes. However I can use my iPhone charger (USB 240V power
pack) for the power cable, if need be. When first plugged in it
automatically displays the installer icon. Click on it and the process
starts. First it asks for confirmation that you wish to format the
drive for Mac OS Extended (recommended for Time Machine). Then it takes
several seconds to format the drive, which mounts on the desktop. If
Time Machine has not yet been set up then you are prompted to use the
Lacie drive for Time Machine. Click OK and a couple of hours later (eg
30Gb per hour) you have your backup safely on that drive. I have it set
to do manual backups because the drive is normally stored off-site.
- 1 Aug 09 BBC: Apple
to fix iPhone security flaw - update now availbale via iTunes
(iPhone OS 3.0.1)
- 10 Jun 09 Apple Discussions: The iPhone 3GS will have
video recording available. The previous model iPhone (3G) will not have
the same capability under iPhone 3.0 operating system. This is crazy as
jailbroken iPhones (not recommended) can run the Cycorder
video app. But what really irks
me is that Apple has removed a thread about this from Apple Discussions.
- 2 Jun 09 O'Reilly: Josh
Clark on iWork '09: The Missing Manual - tips (thanks Garry
- 2 Dec 08 WP: Apple:
Mac Users Should Get Antivirus Software - see these tips
- 18 Nov 08 Apple Discussions: A new
has been started on the lack of a Firewire port on the new Macbook (see
22 Oct below and picture of my Firewire peripherals). This seems to be
a precedent and hopefully shows that
Apple is well aware of the dis-satisfaction. Update 9 Jun 09: The new 13"
Macbook Pro has firewire!
- 23 Oct 08 About.com: Security
Warning: Beware of MacGuard - a "rogue program that pretends
to be a security application..."
- 22 Oct 08 Apple Pro Tips: Boolean
Spotlight Searches - example "asteroid NOT 2008
kind:presentations" (AND, OR and NOT need to be uppercase to be
- 22 Oct 08 Apple
- New Macbooks do not have a firewire port, rendering them useless for
many users with firewire peripherals. With 18,000 views and 594 posts
as at today, it is evidently a hot topic.
- 25 Sep 08 WAToday: 'I'm
a PC' made on a Mac.
- 23 Sep 08 Nullriver: NetShare, banned
from the AppStore - Looks
like Apple has decided they will not be allowing any tethering
applications in the AppStore. As such, NetShare will not be available
in the iTunes AppStore...PDAnet
is now available for the iPhone but it requires jailbreaking (not
- 14 Aug 08 About.com: Phishing
Scam Uses MobileMe and iTunes as Bait
- 3 Jul 08 WP: Serious
Security Vulnerabilty In Apple OS X Leopard (but check the
discussion for problems with the suggested solutions)
- 20 Jun 08 Mac OS X Hints:View
PDFs inline in Firefox 3 - BUT be cautious about installing
- 16 Jun 08 ITWire: More
info about iPhone coverage in Australia - apparently Optus
will have compatible 3G services in major cities.
Jun 08 Apple (email): Apple removed your post on Apple Discussions
titled "Re: iPhone 3G as Bluetooth-Modem? " because it contained the
following: Speculation or Rumors/Off-topic or non-technical posts -
Judge for yourself: Turns out this discussion could be
Australia: "the high-speed 3G services promised by Optus would not be
delivered on the iPhone as the device is not compatible with Optus's
900Mhz 3G network..." (from ITNews).
The Tech Specs for iPhone state: UMTS/HSDPA (850, 1900, 2100
& GSM/EDGE (850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz) so it seems that, if
uses 900MHz, the iPhone will only be able to use GSM/EDGE
capabilities. More on iPhone.
- 10 Jun 08 Comment: Two key features are holding me back
from buying the iPhone 3G for use in Australia:
1. I would like to use it for tethering my Macbook (accessing internet
via the iPhone) instead of using an Optus HSDPA USB modem (Now if only
the Optus SIM card could be used in the iPhone...).
2. Video conferencing does not seem to be supported - at the very least
integrating iChat would have been sensible. I guess the camera is on
the wrong side! Posted on Apple
on 10 June BUT "Your post "Tethering and/or ichat with iPhone 3G " was
removed from Apple Discussions as it contained feedback or feature
requests. These areas are intended to address technical issues about
Apple products. Although your feedback is appreciated, unfortunately
these forums are not designed for it and your thoughts/concerns will
not get the attention they deserve." Others agree: iPhone
2.0 - glass half full or half empty? - The iPhone 2.0's
biggest disappointment is the lack of tethering... Optus iPhone
- 5 Jun 08 WP: The
Review That Never Happened: Microsoft Office 2008 - Office
2008 often buries useful features behind layers of menu options...
- 3 Jun 08 BCS: Microsoft
issues caution [over Safari bug] + ITBusinessEdge: Apple
Not Concerned with Safari Bug, but Microsoft Is.
- 4 May 08 MacFixIt: Java
update for Mac OS X 10.5.x problems. (eg Safari)
- 22 Apr 08 IT Wire: Microsoft:
will you save Windows XP? - Microsoft, Microsoft... why are
you transforming yourself into the best advertisement possible for Mac
OS X... + WP: Windows
Vista Service Pack 1: Not for the Impatient
- 17 Feb 08 Apple: Mac
OS X 10.5.2 Combo Update - its 348Mb! Try it if you have
difficulty with the automatic update.
- 11 Feb 08 Max Fixit: QuickTime
7.4.1 does not fix playback, downgrade still works.
- 5 Feb 08 Apple: Google
maps now integrated with Address Book. There are also Stephen
for Whereis and Multimap.
- 30 Jan 08 SMH: Office
renovations - Microsoft makes modest improvements to its new
Macintosh suite but the result is underwhelming + Mac's
air to the throne
- 20 Jan 08 AppleInsider: Leopard
satisfaction driving "explosive" Mac sales + Yahoo: IBM
to add software for Apple devices (Lotus Office?)
- 2 Jan 08 SMH: The
ABC of podcasting
- For years we of the Macintosh persuasion have seethed as
organisations that ought to have known better ... ignored our
- 1 Dec 07 Mozilla: Firefox
18.104.22.168 fixes a problem with drop-down lists (but
Java still not supported?)
- 25 Nov 07 Apple: Compress
PDF Workflow - Mac
OS X 10.5 (Leopard) does not exhibit the “Compress
workflow on the Print dialog that used to appear in OS X 10.4 (Tiger).
This package will restore “Compress PDF” to the
- 23 Nov 07 ITWire: Mac
quarantine bug returns in Leopard - vulnerability
with email attachments (thanks Stephen
- 18 Nov 07 BBC: End
of the innocence for Mac fans.
- 18 Nov 07 Apple: Leopard:
About the Application Firewall - important tips for the new
way in which the firewall operates in Leopard (it is NOT on by default)
- 18 Nov 07 Versiontracker: Toast,
updates for Leopard.
- 7 Nov 07 CERT: Apple
QuickTime Updates for Multiple Vulnerabilities
- 7 Nov 07 Scientific American: Mac
Attack Targets Porn Surfers - trojans let in by
Leopard? Web surfers can prevent infection simply by
not downloading the fake codec software, or by avoiding porn sites
altogether—whichever is easier.
- 3 Nov 07 Apple: Mac OS X 10.5: Keychain
cannot be found message after upgrade install -
- 27 Oct 07 Possible Leopard
problems (note that some of the suggested fixes may be risky!):
fixes from Version Tracker: Mac OS
X Leopard Software Updates and Downloads + Preparing
for Mac OS X 10.5 (Leopard) Installation + Apple: Leopard: Information
to collect before an Erase and Install.
- 26 Oct 07 TidBITS: How Leopard Will
Improve Your Security (thanks Stephen Withers)
- 26 Oct 07 Macintouch: Reader
reports of pros and cons of Leopard - eg Filemaker
may have problems!
- 16 Aug 07 MS
Office security update.
- 16 Aug 07.My
favorite keyboard shortcuts (PDF)
- 27 Jul 07 The Firefox RSS reader Newsfox needs to be updated
for Firefox 2.
- 21 Apr 07 WP: Apple
Issues Patches for 25 Security Holes.
- 29 Mar 07 Apple tip: Dropping
Text on the Dock for Fast Results - just drag selected text
to Safari (Google search), TextEdit or Mail to paste that selection
into the application.
- 13 Mar 07 Chris Pirillo: Windows
Vista: I’m Breaking up with You (thanks Garry
- 26 Feb 07 SMH: Why
some users are prevented from upgrading to Vista
- "Lurking in that 14-page agreement is a ban on using the least
expensive versions of Vista - the $A385 Home Basic edition and the
$A455 Home Premium edition - in virtualization engines. Instead, people
wanting to put Vista in a virtualized program have to buy the $A565
Business version or the $A751 Ultimate package."
- 26 Feb 07: ClamXav
1.0.7 - update to antivirus software.(thanks Stephen Withers)
- 16 Feb 07 MacInTouch: Review: AirPort
Extreme 802.11n - disapponting performance.(thanks Stephen Withers)
- 13 Feb 07 WP: Perils
- 4 Feb 07 M$ to release the Zunephone?
- 31 Jan 07 Washington Post: At
Microsoft, a Sad Software Lesson
- In my view, we lost our way," Vista's manager, Jim Allchin, wrote in
an e-mail (later posted online) to Microsoft founder Bill Gates and
chief executive Steve Ballmer. "I
would buy a Mac today if I was not working at Microsoft."
- 3 Jan 07 WP: QuickTime
Flaw Kicks Off Month of Apple Bugs.
- 24 Dec 06 SMH: Help
- Underneath (Vista) is still Windows with its DLL hell..."
"[Apple] Leopard will create jobs, but not in help desks.
it will improve creativity and productivity through its intuitiveness
and new features that make using a Mac easier and more fun..."
- 20 Dec 06 Microsoft: Microsoft
Office 2004 for Mac 11.3.2 Update - This update contains
several improvements for PowerPoint and Entourage. There was an aborted
update last week! (thanks Stephen Withers)
- 8 Dec 06 SMH: Apple
may be cool but it comes last on green list.
- 30 Nov 06 Financial Times: Zune
swoon - Hm. Seems Microsoft hasn't got it quite right with
Version 1.0 of its Zune player...
- 28 Nov 06 BBC: Official
warning on Mac code bug - So far the DMG bug has only been
shown to work under laboratory conditions and has not been seen in the
wild. CERT: Apple
Mac OS X fails to properly handle corrupted DMG image structures
disable the Open “safe” files after downloading
Safari...Do not download DMG files from unknown or untrusted sources.
- 2 Nov 06 Apple: Important
firmware update for Macbooks.
- 20 Oct 06 Choice: The
CHOICE iSHONK for Dual-level Shonkyness...but the
justification seems a little dodgy.
- 1 Oct 06 Apple: Tiger
10.4.8 update - read first - 150Mb upload!
- 28 Sep 06 SMH Macman: That's
- Apple is outpacing the rest in innovation, design, integration,
execution and plain talent and imagination. The stuff just works,
seamlessly, without the need for a nerd and a stack of manuals. It's
elegantly simple to use and wonderfully capable...but Bugs
- 23 Sep 06 WP: Apple
Issues Patches for Laptop Wireless Flaws.
- 15 Sep 06 SMH: Apple's
new iTunes version branded a lemon + Apple forums: Uninstalling
for Windows - some users are reporting bugs in iTunes 7. Get
iTunes 6 here.
[No problems with my Mac or iPod!]
- 26 Aug 06 SMH: Now
I'm a believer - I'm
not getting rid of Microsoft entirely. It's Windows I can't stand. I'm
a heavy user of Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint, and the fact that
they are available on the Mac made my decision much easier. All these
applications actually work better on the Mac....what is the Mac like to
use?In every department, it beats the PC hands down.
- 25 Aug 06 BBC: Apple
recall on laptop batteries - iBooks & Powerbook G4s
sold between October 2003 and August 2006.
- 24 Aug 06 Yahoo: Review: Mac
Pro beats Dell on price (and performance).
- 12 Aug 06 Synk
6 has many of the backup features of the new Leopard OS X.
- 3 Aug 06 WP: Hijacking
a Macbook [or PC] in 60 Seconds or Less - wireless
- 6 Jul 06 BBC: Web
perils advise switch to Macs.
- 29 Jun 06 WP: Apple
Updates Fix Five Flaws for Mac OS X.
- 3 May 06 WP: A
Time to Patch III: Apple.
- 1 May 06 SMH: Macs
becoming virus targets.
- 25 Apr 06 WP: More
Mac OS X Flaws Identified.
- 8 Apr 06 Parallels: Parallels
Workstation 2.1 Delivers First Virtualization Solution for
Intel-powered Apple Computers.
"Enables Users to Run Windows, Linux and Other Operating Systems
alongside Mac OS X"
- 7 Apr 06 BBC: Windows
on Macs provokes a stir.
- 25 Mar 06 WP: When
Macs Attack - PERL vulnerability
- 15 Mar 06 WP: Apple
Issues Another Mac Patch Bundle .
- 9 Mar 06 MacFixit: 10
simple steps for securing your Mac (thanks Stephen Withers)
- 3 Mar 06 WP: Apple
Update Fixes 13 Security Flaws.
- 28 Feb 06 SMH: Why
Apple bet its future on Intel union + Apple
core up to speed.
- 23 Feb 06 BBC: More
problems bite Apple + WP: Exploit
Published for Unpatched Mac OS X Flaw
- 18 Feb 06 WP: New
Mac Worm Spreads [!] Via Bluetooth - No real threat but if you use Mac OS X, make sure
you are up
to date on security patches.
- 17 Feb 06 Washinton Post: Apple
"Worm" and More Mac Patches
- 15 Feb 06 Apple: OS 10.4.5 released. A "super" update
downloaded from here.
VPC6 and VPC7 seem to run fine. It may be advisable to
all saved-state virtual machines BEFORE doing the 10.4.5 update. Also
make sure your virtual machines are
- 14 Feb 06 WashPost: New
Grant System Excludes Mac Users - Electronic Forms Compatible
- 11 Feb 06 Microsoft: Intel-based
Mac FAQs for Virtual PC 7.
- 6 Feb 06: Tips
using iWeb to publish to non-.mac servers - by Tom Gewecke. iWeb
seems cumbersome to
use, compared with Mozilla! Nvu
similar to Mozilla Composer (thanks Brett)
- 6 Feb 06 Seamonkey
1.0 released (relaces Mozilla Suite) - FAQ.
Mozilla will no
longer be improved by Mozilla Foundation (just security fixes).
Seamonkey is a volunteer project to keep Mozilla alive and well.
- 30 Jan 06 Get the NET: Is
it Time to Consider an Apple Macintosh?
- 17 Jan 06: Google
Earth is now available for Mac OS X as well as Windows
- 15 Jan 06 APC:
boot XP after all
+ Microsoft: Microsoft's
Renewed Commitment to Developing for the Mac.
- 15 Jan 06 MacWorld: Can
Developers Give Mactel an Enterprise Boost? Apple has previously stated that
not prevent developers from enabling Windows to run on the new Macs,
but Virtual PC for Intel Macs will enable users to run both Mac OS X
and Windows at the same time, without rebooting. Microsoft did not
announce when it would ship the new Virtual PC, but users of the new
Macs will have to wait for the port. Unlike the current version of
Office, the current
version of Virtual
PC won't run under Rosetta, Apple's support environment
PowerPC-native applications on Intel Macs.
- 3 Jan 06 SMH: Apple's
- 1 Jan 06 BBC: Honour goes to Apple gadget guru -
Ive, designer of the iPod and iMac, is made a CBE in the New Year
- 29 Dec 05 Mozilla: Seamonkey
new name for the Mozilla application suite.(thanks Stephen Withers)
- 20 Dec 05 BBC:
for Mac version of IE - web-testing firm SciVisum surveyed
websites and found that one in 10 of them failed to work properly on
the Firefox browser (frustratingly you cannot even contact the
webmasters to report the problem).
- 15 Dec 05: DivX
for Mac now available (thanks Stephen
- 6 Nov 05 Apple: Using
Disk Utility and fsck to resolve startup issues or perform disk
maintenance - "live"
disk checking with OS 10.4.3...
- 3 Nov 05 Apple: Airport bug fix - associated with the
- 1 Nov 05 Apple: Tiger 10.4.3, with numerous bug fixes,
released. Virtual PC & seems to be stable now.
- 27 Oct 05: Australia is now listed on the iTunes Music
list of countries. BUT many of the songs that are available in the USA
are not appearing in the Australian lists. Dont bother looking for
Beatles on either!
- 21 Oct 05 SMH: Launch
of Australian iTunes website 'imminent'.
- 18 Oct 05 Mozilla: What
and Mozilla users should know about the IDN buffer overflow security
issue - simple patch available.
- 18 Oct 05 Some
tips for using Filemaker Pro 8.
- 24 Sep 05 Apple:
membership now comes with 1 GB of combined .Mac Mail and iDisk storage
- 20 Sep 05 CNet: iTunes
5 is giving problems - wait for a bug fix (thanks Stephen Withers.)
- 28 Jul 05 CERT: Vulnerabilities
in Mozilla - upgrade to v1.7.10
- 19 Jul 05 SMH: Mozilla
patches Firefox flaws - The Mozilla Foundation has patched
flaws in the Firefox browser and the Mozilla suite of
applications, and is advising users to upgrade.
- 29 Jun 05 MS: Microsoft
Virtual PC for Mac Version 7.0.2 Update - the long awaited
- 27 Jun 05 Apple: It seems that Virex virus checker for
is no longer available with a .mac account and that Virex is not
compatible with Tiger. Panther
users can get virus updates until May 2006. How
uninstall Virex! You can still buy
it from McAfee for US$40. McAfee download of Virex
7.2 uninstaller. Alternative
- 16 Jun 05 Apple: Update Xcode
requires Mac OS X version 10.4 (Tiger) or higher.
- 11 Jun 05 Washington Post: Apple's
Bushel of Critical Fixes. Apple:
Update 2005-006 (Mac OS X 10.3.9) - there is also a Tiger
- 2 Jun 05 CERT: Apple
Mac OS X
is affected by multiple vulnerabilities - fixed by security
- 16 May 05 Mozilla: Mozilla Suite
has some bug fixes.
- 11 May 05 Washington Post: Apple
Releases iTunes Security Update
- 10 May 05 SMH: Apple
upgrade bears fruit - Australian defence department using
- 2 May: A list of possible
bugs is here
- one user reports problems with Graphic Converter and you need to get
5.6.x + Macintouch: Tiger
Incompatibilities. If you have them, GeeThree Slick plugins
cause problems with iMovie or Quicktime. They need updating. Watch
others like DiVx
- eg OS
Classic might be disabled!
- 2 May 05 VPC
Newsgroup: Virtual PC seems to have problems with Tiger
Switch networking, Start icon in Dock and VPC Disk Image Mounter helper
app interferes with Finder?) - VPC patches should be coming out soon.
DON'T INSTALL TIGER BEFORE UPDATING VPC.
- 28 Apr 05 Washington Post: Apple
Issues 8 Security Updates for Mac OS X, Safari + Firefox
[+Mozilla] Upgrade Fixes 9 Security Holes
- 3 Apr 05 Tip: I have been using my iDisk public folder
successfully for a year or
two. Yesterday I was unable to access the file by URL (using a web
eventually solved the problem by changing the p in Public to uppercase
for example: http://mpainesyd.com/idisk/Public/paine_young_drivers.pdf
- 24 Mar 05 Washington Post: Macintosh
Hacker Attacks Are on the Rise - Symantec + Reply: Mac Threats: Is Symantec Crying Wolf?
- 22 Mar 05 SMH: Firefox
explorers - alternatives to MS Internet Explorer
- 8 Mar 05 Apple: Overview of
- including a demo
of remarkable features of the new iChat.
- 15 Feb 05 Seattle Times: iWork
Pages is nearly a dream come true.
- 12 Feb 05 Apple: Mac
10.3.8 Update - If you have a third-party FireWire
installing this update. Reconnect it and turn it back on
installation is complete and you've restarted.
- 1 Feb 05 CNN: Apple
voted most influential brand [due to iPod]
- 29 Jan 05 Apple: Developers
Integrate your application with .Mac (web services)
- 19 Jan 05 MacnewsWorld: ITunes
Risk from Hackers - update to 4.7.1 fixes it
- 19 Jan 05 Apple: iWorks
- an update to Keynote (Powerpoint rival) plus Pages - a new document
processor that looks similar to the grand old AmiPro for Windows.
- 16 Jan 05 Apple.au: iLife05
released - has some useful upgrades for iPhoto and the like
is a concern that most OS X users will have to pay full price for the
- 12 Jan 04 BBC:
unveils low-cost 'Mac mini'
- 1 Dec 04 CERT:
You Connect a New Computer to the Internet
- 30 Nov 04 About.com: Mac
- with links
Myths About Mac, Mac and
Guide to Peaceful Co-Existence and OS Shootout: OS X vs
- 22 Nov 04 MacMerc: iChat
info thieving - Did you know that you can pretty much steal
personal individual contact information on any fellow Mac user running
iChat on the same
network as you?
Set iChat preferences to avoid this. Thanks Stephen Withers.
- 16 Nov 04 Consumer Reports Magazine: Computers
- Shiny Apple (subs required). Conclusion: Consider a Macintosh. Using one
surest way to get top-notch reliability and support while minimizing
exposure to viruses and spyware. But converting from a Windows PC will
cost you: The computer costs more than a similarly featured Windows PC,
and you’ll likely need new software and spend time converting
existing data files. Mac users also have fewer choices in software.
(extract c2004 Consumer Reports) [VPC
overcomes this problem in most cases]
- 12 Nov 04 MS: Virtual PC 7.0.1 update - recommended for users
of VPC7 - thanks Stephen
- 5 Nov 04 NSA's Apple Mac OS Security Configuration Guide - thanks Stephen Withers.
- 28 Oct 04: DIVX video plug-in for iMove and Quicktime
- 22 Oct 04 Yahoo: Java Studio Creator Update Targets Mac
Developers - develop Java
applications on Mac OS X for
deployment on any platform compatible with the Java 2 Standard Edition.
- 19 Oct 04 MS; Microsoft Office v. X for Mac Security
- thanks Stephen
- 1 Sep 04 BBC:
off new [G5] iMac in Paris
- 21 Aug 04: VPC users are reporting
problems after installing the XP2 update.
- 20 Aug 04 BBC:
about bad batteries - 15" Powerbooks sold around Jan 04. See
Feb 04 VPC tips below for
overheating Powerbooks (not related to the recall).
- 4 Aug 04 MS: Virtual
PC 7 coming soon!
- 30 Jun 04 SMH: Sounds of silence over iTunes - While Apple's iTunes Music Store spreads
Europe, no word yet when, or if, it will launch in Australia.
- 25 May 04 BBC: Apple
tackles Mac security flaw.(Safari)
- 19 Apr 04 SMH: The
claws of the jungle - Cyber jungle laws mean Jaguar and
must give way to the Tiger (OS 10.4 on the way!).
- 29 Apr 04 Computerworld:
NSW traffic authority switches (back) to Macs.
- 3 Mar 04 Yahoo: File
Sharing Vulnerability Discovered in Mac OS X
- 11 Feb 04: .mac subscribers who use McAfee's Virex software
the software (v7.2) before trying an eUpDate. See also Virex:
Nothing Happens When I Try To Update.
- 11 Feb 04 MS: Vulnerability
in Virtual PC for Mac - security update for Virtual PC
- 18 Aug 03: Microsoft
have taken over Virtual PC and the Connectix website has
down :(. See the MSN
newsgroup for helpful support.
- 7 Dec 03 Virtual PC 6.1 is now bundled with MS
Office for Mac.
- Security problem Apple: Mac
10.3: Firewall Unavailable After (Panther) Upgrade Installation
Help and tips -
general OS X tips
- Go out and buy the bulky book Mac OS X Unleashed.
cheap but it will save you hours of frustration - particularly if you
are setting up an Mac/Windows network. Please note I will not
provide advice on the subject of networking - except ...
- The iMac will network with
Windows PCs (i.e. be
- Totally ignore the Network icon in Finder.
the Finder Menu Bar select Go then Connect to Server. After a short
a list of networked PCs/Macs will be displayed. If its logon is the
as an iMac user name (Accounts) then you can double click on the PC to
select it as a network volume (if more than one drive is available you
will need to select from a list). An icon for the selected PC will
appear on the desktop and you can copy files to and from it.
- To share iMac folders over a LAN try Sharepoints
-it has a
clever point and click method of finding and sharing folders. Otherwise
you might need to learn about the SAMBA setup (from the book) or get Sharity.
- About.com: File
Sharing with Windows XP and OS X
- Ignore the advice in the above book and set
free-for-all folder (mine is called ALLDATA) under the root
directory of the iMac. From FINDER, right click (oh yes - replace the
Apple mouse with a USB
two-button/scrolling mouse) on your new folder and choose Get Info.
Ownership and Permissions and give Group
access. Now any account holder (OK - see the book) can use folders
under ALLDATA from anywhere on the network. I use ALLDATA as a file
back it up (to DVD!) regularly. The only limitation is that nasty
Word for Windows cannot do its file tricks with documents on the iMac
- if I have to run Word under Virtual Windows then I
documents to the Virtual Windows d: drive. The same applies for Open
(DOS) data (but then it had problems with some 2Gb hard drives - no
85Gb wont work).
- One annoyance is that the built-in PDF creator
ridiculously high resolutions and so file
sizes can be huge. If you can get Acrobat running it is much
tip Sep 05 - Tiger now has a Compress PDF option in the Print
dialog box. This defaults to maximum compression of images within the
PDF. See the link for how to change to better picture quality. The
resolution (600dpi?) is unchanged and cannot be altered so files sizes
are still quite large.
- The booklet The Ultimate Guide to Mac OS X from PC World is very
useful and has
plenty of goodies on a CD.
dialog? Believe it or not, this is a symptom of improperly
in your Apple Pro
- I have found Burnz
product for buring CDs.
Up to now I have generally created a folder on the desktop and copied
items to it to create a compliation CD (ie files from several folders).
One irritation is that, by default, OS X moves instead of copies
dragged files. I have to copy then paste to get the files there and
often forget, so have to recover my moved files.
I had the idea of creating a disk image on my desktop since files are
copied to images rather than moved. I have just tried it with Burnz and
it works perfectly. The only limitation is that the CD volume name
becomes 'burnz' (it would handy if Burnz gave the option of typing in a
volume label). I create the image using the Disk Utility of Panther.
During this process you can set a limit to the size of the image and it
is best to select the CD size from the displayed list. In this way you
will be warned if the files grow too large. Once the image is created
it can be dragged to the desktop for easy use. (Comment from the
writers of Burnz) As an alternative,
just use a folder instead of a disk image, and use command+option-drag
to "copy" items
into it. This will create an alias to the original at the
drag-destination, and then you can turn on Burnz's alias-resolution
feature (1-level-deep) to have the items automagically burned. If you
turn on the "save job settings" option in Burnz, Burnz will
automatically save the alias-resolution settings and any custom icon
with the burn-folder.<> If you have "sets" of items that
often burn together, you can create individual folders for each set.
Then you can burn up-to-date copies of the items by just dragging the
folder onto Burnz. Because these folder contain aliases to the
originals, and because the aliases are resolved on-the-fly at
resulting disc will
always contain the most current versions of the referenced items.
Plus the resulting disc will be titled the same as the folder.
This can reduce frequent backups (that will fit onto a single disc) to
a single drag-drop operation -- drag the backup-folder onto Burnz,
stick in the disc at the right moment, and just walk away. Such a
backup can contain aliases to critical folders scattered all over your
system, without consuming the space and time required to burn
everything on your HD or in your user folder.
You can, of course, mix-and-match items in the folder (some aliases,
some not) and the originals do not have to even "live" on the same
- Tiger has a Burn Folder feature similar to, but not as
versatile as, Burnz - see this Macworld
tip ("View size requirements for burn folders")
- To use a PowerBook laptop like a FireWire hard disk
connect it to an iMac without networking). Connect both machines with a
6 pin/6 pin FireWire cable. While booting hold down the "T" button of
the PowerBook. Now the PowerBook will act like a FireWire hard disk.
Excel for Mac to access data in an MS Access database (thanks
with Windows and
Tiger (this advice is the tip of the iceberg)
- Run Applications/Utility/Directory Access and make
sharing it checked. Configure it for your workgroup name
- System Preferences/Accounts - create an account for
Windows user that is to have access to the Mac (give them minimum
- System Preferences/Sharing/Services select Windows
and an Account button will appear. Click it and select the Windows
users that you wish to share with
- Your Mac volumes should now appear as network volumes
Windows PCs where the user name is in your list
If the Windows PC is set
networking with other Windows computers then it should appear in your
Mac Network list (in Finder).
More tips from About.com
- About.com Spotlight tip - use
kind filter for smarter searches.
in the status bar at the foot of the window: Preferences | Content |
- CD or DVD wont eject and doesn't show up in Finder? Try
typing drutil eject in Terminal
- To enhance the Quick View function of Snow Leopard (pressing
spacebar when an item is selected) type the following in Terminal and
restart your computer: Defaults write com.apple.finder QLEnableXRayFolders 1 Now when you press the spacebar on a folder the contents are displayed. Replace the 1 with a 0 to disable this feature (thanks About.com)
(OS X and networks)
- Save a desirable printer
configuration (such as fast printing) whenever the Print Dialogue (see
snapshot at right) appears by clicking on the Preset list. Select Save
As from this list and it will appear
in the drop down list with the name you provide. Some apps like
even remember the last preset you chose.
- I bought a Canon i550 inkjet printer after
my local ink refiller store. The high-end Canon printers have ink tanks
that can be refilled very cheaply (but check your warranty conditions).
The cost per page matches that of
laser printers (plus I have colour!).
- Old parallel port printers are a headache with the Mac
- it is probably not worth the effort trying to get them to work
directly (see links below).
See item 8 below for a
way to use a
parallel printer in a network.
- To print
from OS X Panther
to a printer on a networked Windows PC: Open the Printer
Click Add / Select Windows Printing from the drop down list / Select
the PC with the printer / Log on to that PC / Select the correct
Printer Model (don't use Generic!) / Click ADD). I have found that
sometimes when the PC goes to sleep it can wreck the link and printing
fails until everything is rebooted. Apple tips
upgrade to OS 10.3.7!
- Panther also allows you to make a printer connected to
Mac look like a Postscript printer to a Windows network. I successfully
print from within VPC on a Powerbook to a Canon Bubblejet printer
attached to an
iMac using this method (using a Canon colour postscript printer driver
in Windows VPC - NOT the Bubblejet driver).
- Another way of printing from VPC to to a Mac printer is
install Apple's Bonjour for Windows
and have XP
find the Mac printer as a network printer (XP needs Bonjour to do
The trick is to make XP think it is talking to a postscript printer
rather than the actual printer (eg use a Canon postscript laser printer
like "Canon PS-IPU Color Laser Copier v52.3�" rather than a
bubblejet driver). XP sends postscript commands to OS X which
translates them into the actual printer commands. This can sometimes
get around odd printer problems.
for Bonjour tips. Bonjour can automate the printer configuration
process from withiin XP. However, to do this with a printer
attached to the Mac on which VPC is running you must change the VPC
Settings to Virtual Switch networking (Shared Networking does not work
since the Mac and VPC are sharing the same IP address).
See the networking advice at
With Tiger you can nominate the Windows users that can access your
system (System Preferences / Sharing /Services/ Windows Sharing
Accounts ). I think they need an identical account name and password in
Tiger as their Windows log-on so make sure the Tiger privileges are
- The Canon IPX3000 Bubblejet printer works well with OS
the full manual is in HTML on the installation CD and the Quick Start
Guide makes no mention of the error light meanings. Here is an extract from the
to tell you what the flashing orange light means.
- You can
use a D-Link Router/Print
Server with OS X and
connect two printers (one parallel,
the other USB). There are some
great tips for IP Printing with the GIMP
print package. In short, you set the printer up for IP
Use the IP address 192.168.0.1. For the parallel port on the Router use
Printer Queue name "lp". For the USB port use "lpUSB0". Then select the
appropriate printer driver (don't use generic). BUT the Canon IP3000
will not work.
Setup Repair 5.0.2 (Tiger Edition) - utility software
is a high performance CUPS backend for USB printing in Mac OS X and
Darwin. When used in combination with a printer-compatible, CUPS-based
printer driver (such as Gimp-Print) usbtb provides easy-to-use,
high-performance printing (solves communications problems with some USB
- 7 Apr 06: Canon
printer tanks no longer refillable
- I "upgraded" from a Canon IP3000 to an IP4200 inkjet printer
few weeks ago. The ink tank system looked the same as the IP300 but it
turns out that slightly different tanks are used. I ran out of ink
yesterday and took the tanks to a local business that has been
refilling my ink tanks for several years. He gave me the news that the
IP4200 ink tanks cannot be refilled. It seems they have built-in chips
that prevent this.So much for environmental friendliness...
Airport Extreme and Airport Express Printer Compatibility List
- connect a USB printer to Airport Express and print to it from any Mac
on the network.
PDFs is trickier to use with Leopard. It is on
the PDF button list under "Backup"! If it does not reduce file size
then use the Apple ColorSync utility (Applications/Utilities). Start
ColorSync. Choose File/Open and select the PDF file that you want to
compress. Now select Filer/Export. For Quartz Filter choose "Reduce
File Size" and save the PDF (tip adapted from CreativeBits).
Another way is to add the Colorsync application to
It should be in Applications/Utilities/Colorsync.app. Just drag the APP
file to your dock. Now locate your PDF file(s) in Finder and
it to the Colorsync icon in the Dock. The PDF should open, as
shown. For Filter choose "Reduce File Size" (the default selection is
"None") and then Click Apply. You can now close the PDF (eg red dot at
top left) and will be asked whether you wish to save the changes -
choose SAVE. That's it! You might want to make backup copies of the
original files in case there is a problem. On occasions I have found
that some images get corrupted - some strange JPG glitch. My
understanding is that the algorithm simply optimises the resolution and
quality of all images in the document and does not affect the PDF text.
The compressed file should be readable by everyone.
- If you are not happy with the quality from tip 14, you
to create a new "Filter" in Colorsync. Start Colorsync, select Filters,
press the + button to create a new filter. Give it a meaningful name
like "Compress PDF Medium Quality".
Click on the down arrow at the right and select Add Image Effects
Choose Image Compression from the list - image Compression attributes
Change MODE to JPG (it works for me)
Change the QUALITY to near maximum (you may need to experiment with
Close this new filter by clicking on the arrow at left.
Now OPEN the PDF with the Colorsync FILE/OPEN menu selection.
Select EXPORT from the Colorsync FILE menu
Your new filter should appear in the drop-down menu for Quartz Filter.
Doing this reduced a 1Mb PDF to 450Kb and the image quality was
acceptable. The built-in filter reduced it to 280K but image quality
- The iFelix
unofficial Airport Extreme and Airport Express Printer Compatibility
- You can send a fax via a networked Brother MFC printer.
However, the Brother dialog is confusing. The steps are:
Select PRINT SETTINGS from the LAYOUT list
Then click on the same list again!
This time SEND FAX appears in the list so select it!
A new fax dialog appears.
Change OUTPUT to FACSIMILE
Type a fax number in the INPUT FAX NUMBER BOX
Click PRINT !
- Use the Apple application GRAB (Applications/Utilities)
Start it, click Capture/Selection, drag over the portion of screen you
want and press Enter. A TIFF image is created. However, sometimes the
screen changes when you start grab (eg a dialogue box like the above
drag the crosshair over the screen,
press Enter (or click). Now you can paste the selection into a graphics
such as Graphic
Converter or Preview (latter is pict format only). I have
to do a partial screen capture and load it into GraphicConverter.
video demo of using the script. (4MB Quicktime)
- Buy Snapz
Pro X - more professional features and its lets you take a
from a DVD movie (with the latest Macs).
Catcher from St Clair Software
Capture - addition for built-in DVD Player.
can use Preview to copy-and-paste a portion of an image
(image files only - does not work with PDFs).
- "Capturing screens on an iPhone is even easier: Press
the sleep/wake button on top of the phone as you press the home button.
There will be a click and the image will go into the phone's photo
library. And thanks to iMUG stalwart Charmian Gaud for that tip"
Hold down the Command, Shift, and 4 keys, then press the Spacebar.
Instead of a cross-hair cursor, a small camera icon appears. When you
move this camera icon over the element you’d like to capture,
that element is highlighted. Click your mouse or trackpad, and
you’ve captured a screenshot of just that element - it is
to the desktop in GIF format.
- The HP
2400 comes with drivers and useful utility software for Mac
(incl Panther). The Memories Disk utility makes it easy to create a
Video CD that is a slideshow of pictures. If your DVD player can play
V-CD on CD-R or CD+RW then you can play the slideshow on TV. Memories
Disk also creates HTML on the CD so that the slideshow can be run from
any web browser on any type of PC or Mac.
- Be warned that the Canon
scanning software (CanoScan) only works under Mac Classic.
fine print of other scanners and you might find the same problem. Canon
do have an OS X plug-in for Adobe Photoshop under OS X, if you are
lucky enough to have it.
(particularly Powerbook G4 and using VPC)
- Swap the operation of the FN key so keys F1 to F8
work how you want them to, and not volume control etc (works great for
for important installation instructions. You need to change the
preference from 1 to 262144) Update Feb 05: OS 10.3.7+ has an
option to invert the Fn key operation under System Preferences
Keyboard & Mouse (only available for laptops with Fn key).
no longer has this function.
allows hotkeys to be set up (can also be used to disable a
Mac so it can be used in VPC - thanks Sara)
you are using a
G4 keyboard, type Shift+Fn+M to use the <Insert>
VPC/Windows. On Macs without Fn key you can try the <HELP>
- For that inevitable blue
screen (that locks up Virtual PC Windows but not OS X) go the the
Virtual PC Control menu and
select "Type Alt-Ctrl-Delete" to try and abort
the errant application. Apparently Alt-Ctrl-Delete has another purpose
- In VPC, pressing & holding the Command key (the
will "unlock" the cursor & switch it to the MacOS cursor
- Open Access
users - Ctrl-C works the
same as Ctrl-Break for halting a program's execution (Macs don't have a
- Two-Finger-Scrolling with pre-2005 PowerBooks and iBooks (thanks Luca)
- Sometimes you can get the Ctrl key function of a
program by pressing Control & Option together (thanks Iris)
tip - With Finder, select multiple files (hold the
key while clicking on file names) then
(or Option right mouse button) to show the alternative menu. Select Get
Summary Info (or Show Inspector) to display the combined size of the
- In Filemaker
pastes unformatted text - try it with other apps (thanks Ursus)
- In Safari, Command-L then Command-C copies the current
page's URL (address) to the clipboard (thanks Rachel
- Command-Option-Eject puts the Mac to sleep!
- Apple: Fixing
keys on Powerbook G4.
favorite keyboard shortcuts (PDF)
- Apple's built-in Keyboard
allows you to see the extra characters (eg ċ) that are
by pressing the Option key. System Preferences/International, check
the Keyboard Viewer box. Now just click the flag icon in the menu bar
select Show Keyboard Viewer.
- When running a Keynote
presentation, just press the H key to hide the presentation
and show your desktop, without the Keynote window.
- Why bother with the
keyboard when you can have the Mac respond to voice commands?
Talking to Me? Speech on Mac OS X by François
Joseph de Kermadec
- Simply create an alias (Ctrl click Make Alias or
Option-Apple drag) to
your favourite folders, applications or documents (including Filemaker
files) and place this alias in <home>/ Library
items. Rename it to something sensible and short and you can tell the
computer to open that item by merely saying its alias name.
Just say, "Define a keyboard command." A little dialog box will open
and you can assign the keystroke or key-combination, the phrase that
will invoke it and whether to use it in all applications or the
find the built-in Text-to-speech technology of OS X useful. Go to
Preferences/ Speech/ Text to Speech. Tick the "Speak selected text.."
box. Enter a keyboard shortcut (I use Control-F19 as the keys are
diagonally opposite on my keybaord. You will need to select text for
this to work. To select all text from a document press Command-A. Then
press Control-F19 to start the computer speaking. PDF documents in Preview, Microsoft Word (2011+) and email
in Mail work fine.
is beta software for converting scanned documents to text or PDF.
Convert it to a PDF and have the Mac speak to you. Thanks Duncan
Optusnet does not support the Mac for its wireless internet service in
Australia. You will need to buy Launch2Net
software from Novamedia and follow these steps (tips from MacTalk
installing the software and plugging in the modem it will interrogate
the modem and be able to display signal level’s, Network
GPRS, EDGE), etc.
Some customisation is required and can be done as follows.
- Click on the ‘Cog(wheel)’ icon beside
the ‘Connect’ button
- This will return some details such as network (eg. AU
Optus) and connection type
- Click on the ‘Change’ button
- Now the software will interrogate the modem and this will
take a few moments
- Click on the ‘Preferences’ tab
- Check the ‘Custom Settings’ tick box,
then click ‘Edit’
- Enter ‘connect’ for the APN
- Clear the Username and Password fields and leave the DNS
entries as they are. (0.0.0.0)
- Click Save
- Under the ‘Speed’ tab, you might have
to experiment if the default setting does not work (maybe avoid "dual
- Click Save
- Then ‘Connect’
has a demo version but the full version is 75 Euro.
Or there are these tips from Shasam.net: Optus
Wireless Broadband USB on Mac OSX
for connecting to Optusnet Cable with Apple Time Capsule
Feedback sent to Apple
The Apple website has Feedback
pages for most products. Here is a list of Feedback that I have sent to
Apple. So far I have not notcied that any have been implemented!
- Software control of sound output (via the headphone jack) would
be very useful to me. When you think about it, having a physical switch
for this (by pushing a plug into the jack) is ancient technology (Nov
- The Alarm function in iCal should allow users to select the
Calendar that they wish to have alarms ring - so my wife does not
receive my alarms on her iPHone but knows my appointments
- iPhoto 9 needs to have the old feature of sending selected photos to Apple Mail. The in-built email app is lousy (Fixed)
- Spaces should have the ability to manage external displays
- Front Row needs the ability to select the display (built-in or external)
- Front Row should play rented movies
- Front Row was taken away with Lion - we want it back!
- Pages needs table of contents and index features
- When printing from Preview, have a "current page" option. Most other apps, like Word, have this!
Alternatives for OS X
Filemaker is a basic
development tool that has excellent design tools for quickly setting up
friendly user forms. It now has relational database functionality but
does not use SQL for retrievals for its native tables (it does has
capability to access SQL servers). The scripting language is crude and
supports most database management functions.
Filemaker runs on both Mac and Windows platforms (from the same
Advanced version provides menu customisation and runtime compiler. The
self-contained runtime packages can be prepared for Mac or Windows
environments but you need to create them from the relevant OS... A good
alternative to MS Access (especially for Mac users) but still lacking some of the great features
tips for using Filemaker Pro 8
- Apple Developer MySQL
introduction (MySQL is shipped with OS X)
Manager - manage your MySQL database server and any other
JDBC compliant database server with MacOS X.
- Download.com list
of database apps
- competitor for Visual Basic that generates executable files which run
on Mac or Wintel (pro version).
is both a fully-featured office suite compatible with leading office
products,...a major new component, Base:
an easy-to-use database manager with a fully integrated database
and help -
iChat and AIM
- AOL AIM
screenname can be obtained for free (URL frequently changes -
might find a link here
- click the "Get a screenname" button))
Shooting in iChat. Tips for conferencing with a Windows PC
The PC end needs to be on XP. They need either AIM
(or link here)
which then needs to be Tuned.
Or they need Trillian
Trillian comes in two versions. The Basic can Audio chat and the Pro
($25) can Video. AIM has one size of pic and Trillian can do Full
Screen like iChat can. Both applications also need enabling through the
XP Firewall do. See
here. These instructions are for AIM but will work if
subsituted for the named App. They will obviously need a camera (and
most USB ones are good enough) and a Microphone.
- Informit: Using
Internet Applications in Mac OS X Tiger - iChat. If you are equipped to host a
conference, select all the participants by Command+Clicking their buddy
list entries, and then clicking the camera or phone icon at the bottom
of the Buddy List. Buddies
Menu one-way audio and one-way video. These are useful if you want to
send audio or video to someone without a camera. They can type their
responses to you and watch/hear your audio/video stream. To start a
1. Highlight the buddies you want to invite to
Command-click on any of the names and choose Invite To Chat, or just
click the A (text) button at the bottom of the window
2. Type a message inviting the participants. When
invited buddies receive the chat request, they can choose to accept or
decline. If they accept, they can send and receive messages as part of
To add additional buddies to a chat, use the + button at the bottom of
the participants drawer to select their name
Discussion about Multi-person video conferences - "The
Internet Connection should be at least 384K UP and Down..." - check
your connection speed here
(be prepared to be disappointed if your have Optusnet cable in
Australia!). Thanks Ralph.
- Macworld: iChat
power tips - organizing your buddies into manageable groups.
Messages to Mobile Phones (good luck!).
Conference Tutorial for iChat and AIM - MVL Design. Windows
users can contact you by using the screen name email@example.com.
allows a USB webcam to be used with iChat.
with Your TV - use iChat and an AV
to digital convertor to watch TV remotely.
- After installing Leopard, iChat stopped working when I
changed the System Preferences Security/Firewall setting (in Leopard)
to only allow incoming connections from specific applications (I think
this is the "list" this discussion is talking about). iChat was in the
list but not iChatgaent.app. I clicked on the + sign and located
Once this was added iChat was fixed.
- 1 Click on Apple menu – Restart
- 2 During bootup, press and hold Command + S to
Single User mode
- 3 At the command prompt type the following:
- 4 Press the Return key to start the process
- 5 When the checking is finished type REBOOT and Return
- might be able to recover lost data
the digital photo & picture recovery solution for erased or
compact flash, memory stick, xd cards, smart media, sd cards and other
media used in digital cameras (thanks Macman)
Rescue II - (thanks Macman)
Copy Clone creates a backup of your hard disk, as does Retrospect.
- prevention is better
With DV Backup
you can even
use a video camera and DV tape to backup your hard disk.
- Apple: Mac
OS X: About file system journaling - Journaling is the
Panther. It helps protect the file system against power outages or
hardware component failures, reducing the need for repairs.
- runs routine Unix clean-up operations
- runs various system level Unix shell scripts in order to perform
maintenance routines and clear the many cache files used by OS X.
command line repairs. Caution - After installation, DO NOT RUN FROM OS
X TERMINAL - you must
run it from
"Single user mode" (unix) by booting while holding the Command and S
- Desperate keyboard booting options (press the keys
during start up):
- Command-S - single user mode
- C - boot from CD (eg install CD)
- T - boot into hard disk (firewire) mode - allows you
transfer files to another Mac
- Shift - Safe mode - no networking
- Command-Option-O-F - boot to firmware prompt. Type
reset-nvram, Enter, set-defaults, Enter, reset-all, Enter. This resets
your firmware and should then boot normally.
- Command-Option-P-R - reset PRAM (date look-up etc)
- Command-Control-Eject - quit all apps and restart (eg
links - not endorsement
but they work for me!
- CD burning made simple (drag folders onto the Burnz icon)
- Dragon Burn - duplicate CDs/DVDs
Disk Utility is tedious)
Converter - comprehensive graphics package. Here is an Applescript
to do a partial screen capture and load it into GraphicConverter.
There are more
scripts for GC. MrSID plug-in
(view maps). If GC is creating large files sizes you should try
unchecking "Add resource fork" in the Advanced Preferences
Pro X - screen snapshots
Catcher - screen snapshots
graphics and charting
PC - IBM/Wintel emulation on the Mac - now bundled with Office:Mac
- Microsoft's Word, Excel, Powerpoint + for Mac. Files fully
interchangeable with Wintel versions.
- possible alternatives to
VPC. Or Radnor
to run DOS games/programs (not Windows) - see snapshot
of Open Access 4 running in DOSBOX on a Mac. However, I
worked out how to print directly from Open Access (have to save to file
and print later from TextEdit). Also check the maths - some bugs with
calculations in early versions.
- competitor for Visual Basic that generates executable files which run
on Mac or Wintel (pro version).
Studio - audio
transfer utility. Tiger-compatibile version 4.0.1 is a free upgrade
from version 4.0.
Version 3.5 is compatible for Tiger users who do not wish to upgrade
from 3.x to 4.x.
- file synchronisation (even works with Windows servers)
is a valuable tool for you to check the links on your web site.
synchronization and archiving for the Macintosh.
Folder X enhances OS X Open and Save dialogs, sets defaults.
GPS Pro - works
with GPS equipment
- Mac software
opensource statistical package.
- manage and convert email data
for OS X - information organiser and converter.
- Word Browser
- Preview the text
of Word documents
right in your browser - avoid the risk of macro viruses.
- PDF Browser
Plugin - but does not work with Intel Macs
3 PDF Plugin for Mac OS X (and Intel Macs)
- very little information available about this plug-in that allows PDFs
to be viewed within Firefox 3 - be cautious! The plug-in would not work
until I changed the Firefox Preferences: Applications Tab, go down the
list until you see Portable Document Format and change the setting to
"Use Quartz PDF Plugin". Use FILE, SAVE AS to save the PDF to disk.
print poster sized displays.
converts PDF files to MS Word or RTF format.
lets you split and join PDF documents as well as insert images and
- From Tiger on you
should be able to
combine PDFs by opening both in Preview with thumbnails in the sidebar
and just drag a thumbnail(s) from one document to the other. Then
choose Save As from the file menu (or Save to overwrite the
document). Snow Leopard update: you now need to select the page in the target document before dragging the source document into the sidebar.
- PDF Shrink
- efficiently reduce PDF file sizes. Has a brilliant droplet function
that simplifies the process. Choose Print quality as the default for
Manager - for Tiger users (thanks Garry
Barker) or if you want widgets for Panther or Windows (!) try
X - thanks Stephen
Preference Pane for Mac OS X
apps + FileChute
use .Mac account to temporarily store large files and email the link to
- DataPilot Universal
Kit for Mac is the leading cell phone data management solution for Mac
- MySync allows Mac-to-Mac
syncing without a .Mac
is similar to Mozilla
Composer for creating and editing web pages. KompoZer
is an unofficial bug-fix for NVU, which seems to be having website
is an Apple graphing utility that comes with Tiger. Forum
tips (no manual!)
Freeware - Mail.app scripts, Eudora Mailbox Cleaner (convert
Netscape/Mozilla to Eudora then frmo Eudora to Mail.app)
Photo - automated processing of digital photographs using
Importer - merges the top Google links with the results of a
Spotlight search (thanks Stephen
Excel Expander - Automation
Toolbox for Microsoft Excel 2004 and Excel X for Mac. It adds 78
automation utilities and 113 new worksheet formulas into Mac Excel
Chart Labeler - add labels to XY chart data points
- creates Unix aliases to enable you to relocate
Garage Band loops and other items to a separate
drive/partition. Unix aliases are more robuts than those
created by Finder.
- battery status
- for Macbooks. Sounds an alarm (and much more) if someone
tries to pick up you Macbook! (thanks Garry
Verey: Anti-Theft Software for Macs
is both a fully-featured office suite compatible with leading office
products, and a virtual community working through OpenOffice.org's
numerous projects...a major new component, Base:
an easy-to-use database manager with a fully integrated database
- supports Office 2007 Word documents and Excel macros + OpenOffice
documents (but uses the Mac OS X aqua interface) (thanks Stephen Withers)
is perfect for individuals who move between two or more Macs, such as a
notebook and a desktop. It easily keeps your contacts, calendars,
notes, Apple Mail account settings and more in sync(thanks Stephen Withers)
Clip is a small Mac OS X application that removes formatting
from text which is on the clipboard.
2.4.6 is an award winning, small, fast, featureful and crossplatform
word processor. Note: equation editing is currently not supported on
Mac OSX (thanks Rob
1.3.4 - Powerful Get Things Done-style organizer for Mac (thanks Stephen Withers)
one-stop photo geocoding for the Mac using Google Earth (thanks Stephen Withers)
- LoadMyTracks is a piece of software that will communicate with GPS
devices from many manufacturers to send and receive data. It can also
be used to translate data between the popular GPX and KML (Google
Clicker for Mac - turn a Bluetooth PDA in to a Mac remote
- assign scripts to keys
- web-based electronic note taking with OCR features for saved images
— strip resource forks from Mac files
Creator - adds TinyURL
icon to the toolber of Firefox (now works with FF3). Create short
aliases to web pages.
- TimeMachineEditor is software
for Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard that lets you change the default one-hour
backup interval of Time Machine.
is a little freeware app with one purpose: to keep your Mac awake...
is a free driver for the Apple Remote, that resolves the problems many
users have had with their remote under Mac OS X Snow Leopard...
archive emails in a searchable MySQL database so they can be accessed
long into the future. Tip: if you are archiving to an external drive
make sure it is "attached" before starting Mail Steward.
- Power Utility Pak for the Mac - Add-in Tools for Excel 2011 - bring back features that Microsoft took away!
Note that, for OS
X, the main
aim is to prevent virus-infected files from being saved to your hard
disk or sent to poor Windows users via email. It could take
research to determine if the package does this well (or at all).
9 Jul 05: ClamXAV
"sentry" function that automatically scans files that are added
to nominated folders. See screen snapshot at right. Add
<home>/Library/Mail Downloads to automatically scan all
to filter MacOSX email through Clam AntiVirus
(does not work
a Windows anti-virus package as well:
offers a small
business package that covers OS X and Windows systems (but it seems
- There are Windows
note that ClamWin
Antivirus does not include an on-access real-time scanner - that is,
you need to manually scan a file in order to detect a virus."
But see the above note about "senty" mode - if you save
attachments/downloads from Virtual PC/Windows to the sentry folder of
ClamXAV (on the z: drive for VPC) then they will be automatically
scanned. This avoids the need to have a separate anti-virus scanner in
Windows - IF you can do without real-time protection.
has real-time protection and is reported
to run well in VPC. There are numerous other Windows anti-virus
software for OS X (thanks Sky
Disclaimer: These tips are really my record of ways to do things on the
Mac and might not be suitable for your system. If they work for you -
great. Backup your data regularly, particularly before trying
major changes to the system.