35 Apple Tips
Posted on: 04/26/2011 11:25 AM

Here the latest tips and tricks from Mac OS X Hints:

- FaceTime error fixed
- 10.6: Use the pcastaction command to manipulate video files
- Bulk collection of iOS device details for Enterprise deployment
- Another no-save PDF save option
- Manually backup and restore a User Home Folder
- Slow-Motion Keynote slide thumbnail animation
- Eliminate surprises and repeats from iTunes Genius Mix playlists
- Command-Click to Expand all iTunes Playlist Folders
- Open the same PDF file twice in Preview
- Speed up Outlook 2011
- Fix SSD slow boot times
- Several networked and non-networked options for Time Machine backups
- Startup freeze after migrating to new i7 iMac
- iTunes 10 change list font size and style.
- Play World of Warcraft with a Joystick/Gamepad in 10.6
- Take charge of the maximize button in iTunes
- Print through a Buffalo Link Station
- Hosting/Joining Microsoft Office Live Meeting
- Sort order in iTunes is playlist order on iOS device
- Retrieve S/Ns of iPods connected to your computer
- View full resolution images in Podcasts
- Pseudo-Sync an eReader with iTunes and iBookstore
- Using iTunes with more specialized music players
- AppleScript to open a collection of Safari tabs
- Backup Mail Notes
- Increase music volume on the iPhone
- Play iTunes Music Videos as sound only
- Get a list of unique dtrace providers
- Opening new Terminal window from Finder
- Undelete from trash to original locations
- High resolution screen captures
- Control the placement of new tabs when Command-clicking links in Safari
- Mass edit Address Book and iCal using Bento
- Add fonts to the built-in Stickies widget
- Temporarily disable automatic login

FaceTime error fixed
For those of us that have downloaded FaceTime for Mac from the Mac App Store and have seen a dialog box with the following text: 'An Internal FaceTime error has occurred. There was a problem with FaceTime. You need to quit and open FaceTime again.

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10.6: Use the pcastaction command to manipulate video files
The command pcastaction is a tool included in Snow Leopard to manipulate QuickTime and MPEG movies in a lot of ways: trim, append, extract soundtrack, watermark, and so forth.

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Bulk collection of iOS device details for Enterprise deployment
The school I work for just took delivery of approximately fifty iPad's that required setup. One of the steps involved is collection of the Airport MAC address in order to permit them to connect to our wireless network.

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Another no-save PDF save option
Another way to save PDFs that don't allow saving from Safari or Preview (perhaps they require a password to save)

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Manually backup and restore a User Home Folder
When troubleshooting a computer problem sometimes its best to just wipe the hard drive and start fresh. I developed the following method for backing up user home folders so that they can easily be restored to another computer or the same computer while preserving proper permissions, ACLs, and file/folder ownership.

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Slow-Motion Keynote slide thumbnail animation
It seems the Shift-click slow-motion effect was carried into Keynote '09.

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Eliminate surprises and repeats from iTunes Genius Mix playlists
iTunes Genius Mixes are nice. They group common music together in a playlist and the songs usually work well together. But there are problems. There is no easy way to tell exactly what songs you may get stuck with on a playlist. Plus, the Genius Mix list will keep playing, even if it has exhausted all songs available to it.

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Command-Click to Expand all iTunes Playlist Folders
In the Finder, Option-Clicking the disclosure triangle for a folder while in list view will reveal or close all its contents. In iTunes, Command-Clicking on just one Playlist Folder will do the same, but for all Playlist Folders in the iTunes sidebar.

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Open the same PDF file twice in Preview
Opening two copies of a PDF file in Preview just got easier.

In the May 2011 Hints, you propose solving the problem of getting two versions of the same PDF file to open in Preview by going into Terminal and opening a second version of Preview.

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Speed up Outlook 2011
I was having big problems with Outlook 2011: it was taking longer and longer to launch (up to a couple of minutes), and then being generally sluggish in use.

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Fix SSD slow boot times
If you've just upgraded from a disk drive to a solid-state disk, booting from reset should take about 15 seconds, logging in should take about 5 seconds, and applications should launch about three to five times faster. However, you may find that everything is faster except the boot from reset, with the initial Apple logo not appearing for about 30 seconds.

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Several networked and non-networked options for Time Machine backups
This hint collects together what I have learned about solutions for Time Machine backups. There are a number of viable solutions, and I cover several of them.

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Startup freeze after migrating to new i7 iMac
Hopefully this will same someone out there some time and hair pulling. I was migrating from a 2x2 Xeon @ 3ghz to a new i7 iMac. After Migration and restarting the iMac started freezing before getting to the blue screen. Since Apple couldn't get a support call to me right away I decided to do some poking around. Using Safe Mode booting and removing start up items I found the problem.

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iTunes 10 change list font size and style.
This hint requires that you have the Apple Developer Tools installed in order to use the Property List editor.

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Play World of Warcraft with a Joystick/Gamepad in 10.6
World of Warcraft, as many other games, doesn't have native support for a Joystick or Gamepad.

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Take charge of the maximize button in iTunes
Unlike every other application, the default behavior when clicking the maximize button in iTunes switches the window to miniplayer view. This can be frustrating when you're actually trying to maximize the window view.

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Print through a Buffalo Link Station
This is a hopefully simple process for getting a mac to print through a Buffalo Link Station storage unit, firmware version 1.37. I'm offering this here because it's taken me over two hours and many different tries with different sets of instructions I found searching the web.

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Hosting/Joining Microsoft Office Live Meeting
I work for a very Large Teleconferencing firm that shall remain nameless, none the less I receive a lot of calls in my line of work at the technical support level. One of the most frequent Mac OSX related issues with callers is 'why cant I host/or have trouble joining a Microsoft Office Live Meeting?'

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Sort order in iTunes is playlist order on iOS device
Two of my favorite smart playlists are titled 'Last 50 Added' and 'Rated 5 Stars.' Which, as they sound, are smart playlists of the most recent tracks I've added to iTunes and my top rated music, respectively. The 'Rated 5 Stars' playlist is handy to see what recently added music warranted another listen.

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Retrieve S/Ns of iPods connected to your computer
If your iPod is lost or stolen you'll want to find its serial number. Luckily, your Mac keeps a record of all the iPods that have connected to the computer with the s/n and other info.

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View full resolution images in Podcasts
Audiobooks and certain 'enhanced' Podcasts contain images display as a slideshow synced to the audio but these are not displayed by default when playing the file in iTunes, and when it does show the artwork, it typically only shows the low resolution preview. This hint describes how to see the full resolution images.

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Pseudo-Sync an eReader with iTunes and iBookstore
In this hint, I describe the process I use to sync my Sony PRS-350 eReader with iTunes and the iBookstore. NOTE: this does not circumvent any DRM for iBookstore purchases. For simplicity, this hint assumes that books/PDFs import to the device are DRM-free, or otherwise viewable on your device.

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Using iTunes with more specialized music players
iTunes can play 'bit-perfect' music losslessly, but only if you do several things. The internal volume control must be set to the max, all digital signal processing, including equalizers, must be turned off, and the sample rate of the track you want to play must be set properly in Audio MIDI Setup before you open iTunes, which means if there is a sample mismatch, you either have to close iTunes, reset Audio MIDI Setup to the desired value, and then restart iTunes.

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AppleScript to open a collection of Safari tabs
Here's a simple AppleScript that replaces the current Safari window with a collection of tabs, each open to a different URL. I've seen several scripts that attempt to do something similar, but this one improves on them in a couple of ways:

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Backup Mail Notes
This hint offers a low tech solution to an all too common problem. The forums are filled with exasperated people who have lost months of notes they created in Mail after a crash, update or simple mistake.

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Increase music volume on the iPhone
This tip describes how to increase the volume of music on your iPhone. It actually works on all the iOS devices.

Some people want to increase the volume of their music, especially the ones living in the EU, because Apple limited the volume to about 75% (EU regulations). If you don't want to jailbreak your iPhone or you are already on 100%, the trick is to disable the equalizer.

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Play iTunes Music Videos as sound only
I was trying to play a music video in iTunes and it started playing only the sound from it. I looked around for a few seconds trying to find the video window, and I restarted the video a few times to see if it would open.

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Get a list of unique dtrace providers
I just got the DTrace book from Amazon and wanted to get a list of providers for DTrace that OSX supports. (DTrace is a probe/profiling tool created by Sun that came with Mac OS X starting with Leopard.)

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Opening new Terminal window from Finder
I use the Terminal and Midnight Commander quite often. However, opening a new terminal window and then changing to the directory location where I need to use the command line takes time. The Toolbar Dragpoints hint brought me to an idea to create a short AppleScript that opens a new terminal window in the folder active in Finder:

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Undelete from trash to original locations
If you've ever trashed some items and then wanted them returned to their original folders, Apple has a counterintuitive way to do so. It is rather odd, but neat!

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High resolution screen captures
Sometimes I want to get a higher resolution screen capture so I can include it in a printed document. Although my monitors are big, if I stretch a window out very large, that doesn't make the text, buttons, or menus bigger. This hint tells you how to scale the window itself, so you get a better screen capture.

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Control the placement of new tabs when Command-clicking links in Safari
When you Command-click a link in Safari, the browser opens the link in a new tab at the end of the tab bar. (This is assuming you have Command-clicks set to open in tabs instead of windows.) If you would rather the new tab were placed next to the current tab, a free extension I wrote called LinkThing will be of use to you.

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Mass edit Address Book and iCal using Bento
I sometimes find myself wanting to make large changes to my Address Book and iCal entriesĀ -- the kinds of things that I don't seem to be able to do within the applications themselves. Things like being able to search for a group of iCal events, select them, and then change them all to a new iCal calendar. Using Bento, I can do just that. It is a great way of cleaning up the Address Book, too.

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Add fonts to the built-in Stickies widget
The built-in Stickies dashboard widget lets you use a few Apple-selected fonts, but the selection doesn't have very many options. I wanted a way to add other fonts to the Stickies widget. By adding two lines to the code that supports the widget, you can add any font on your computer.

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Temporarily disable automatic login
This hint is for programs like Undercover and others.

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Printed from Mac OS Compatible (http://www.macoscompatible.com/news/story/35_apple_tips.html)