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MacOSXHints.com   more  xml  hide  
last updated: Thu, 15 Sep 2011 21:25:39 GMT

 Thu, 15 Sep 2011 07:30:00 -0700 Dashboard Doesn't Lock (Feature or Security Issue?)
I have three external monitors hooked up to my MacBook Pro. One is connected via the Mini DisplayPort, and two are connected via the USB port using a Kensington USB to Display adapter.

When the OSX Dashboard is open, it opens on all three monitors. My computer is set to sleep after 10 minutes of inactivity, and a password is required to log back in.

I noticed that when the login box appears on the main monitor, the second and third monitor still show the OSX Dashboard! I can interact with the Dashboard (move/close widgets) even though my computer should be locked.

I was under the impression that when the computer is in the locked state, you would need a password to access any information or make any changes. For some reason, the Dashboard (on the second and third monitor) remains accessible even though the computer is 'locked.'

This would seem to be a security issue. However, it could be classified as a feature as it could be helpful to be able t ...

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 Thu, 15 Sep 2011 07:30:00 -0700 Improved restoration of History in Safari 5.1
Safari 5.1 is now more thorough in maintaining your browsing history when re-opening tabs or windows. In the past, restoring previous tabs or windows did not include the browsing history in the Back/Forward buttons. Now, when you restore tabs or windows that had been closed, Safari maintains your earlier tab/window history. This applies in at least two areas:

When you restore windows following a quit/relaunch of Safari, whether using the Lion feature that automatically restores windows or History » Reopen All Windows From Last Session, or if you close a tab and use Command+Z (or Edit » Undo Close Tab) to re-open it.

This feature is available to all users of Safari 5.1, so people running Lion or 10.6.8 can use it.

[crarko adds: I tested this, and it works as described. Very nice. It appears enabling Private Browsing prevents this from happening, as you would expect.]

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 Thu, 15 Sep 2011 07:30:00 -0700 10.7: Dragging files from Stacks and Desktop access in fullscreen apps
Just as you can now drag files from Safari's downloads list, you can also drag them from a stack. They can be dragged to the Desktop, Trash, Finder window, folder, folders and volumes in the Sidebar and Toolbar and even another Stack.

Also, while Lion unfortunately does not allow quick access to the Desktop with hot corners this can be somewhat remedied by creating a Desktop Stack to do so without leaving the application. It doesn't work in List View so it helps to set it to sort by date added.

This is also very handy for dragging images and items in the downloads menu from a fullscreen app like Safari to the Desktop. The Dock even automatically pops up if you drag the item to the bottom of the screen without having to use the double down motion normally required to access the Dock in fullscreen apps.

[crarko adds: A good trick to know if you use fullscreen apps a lot.]

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 Wed, 14 Sep 2011 07:30:00 -0700 10.7: Set Label toolbar icon to your choice of colors
MacOS X Lion introduces a new Finder Toolbar icon: Label. The toolbar item consists of a drop down menu allowing you to color/label whatever you have selected. But you don't have to use it as a drop down -- just hit the icon and whatever is selected will immediately be colored with the color shown.

You can change the color of the immediate button-press option by choosing the color (or 'No Label') with nothing selected.

[crarko adds: Nice find, and a good new addition to the Toolbar items.]

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 Wed, 14 Sep 2011 07:30:00 -0700 Removing compromised system root certificates
This hint shows how to remove the Diginotar System Root certificate. You must be an administrator to take this action.

Open KeyChain Access, and select System Roots under Keychains. Type 'diginotar' in the search field on the upper right. When I did this only a single certificate was left in the list of certificates. Select that certificate and press the delete key. Confirm that you want to delete it, and expect to enter your password.

Note: I right clicked on this certificate and selected 'delete' a couple of times but that did nothing.

[crarko adds: This hint was actually submitted prior to the release of Apple Security Update 2011-005 for Lion and Snow Leopard. That update handles this issue for those versions of the OS, but there is no update for Leopard or earlier systems, so these still require manual fixing. For stronger measures than what is included in this hint, I refer you to this excellen ...

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 Wed, 14 Sep 2011 07:30:00 -0700 Change the appearance of Safari Reader in Safari 5.1
Safari Reader is a useful feature for making many websites more readable, but Apple doesn't provide any preference settings for Reader. Fortunately, it is easy to customize by editing the file Reader.html.

In Safari 5.0 it was easy to edit a file in the Safari.app package to set the preferences. In Safari 5.1, the file was moved to a non-obvious place:

/System/Library/PrivateFrameworks/Safari.framework/Versions/A/Resources/Reader.html

You can simply edit the stylesheet in this file to change the appearance of Reader. Any changes will apply to tabs that Safari Reader has not yet been used in, just open a new tab to see the new style. As always, be careful when editing system files, and make a backup of Reader.html first. Be aware that some of the styles appear to be overwritten before you see them. For example, changing the size of the body font has no ef ...

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 Tue, 13 Sep 2011 07:30:00 -0700 10.7: Enable Motion Blur in Exposé animations
A new, albeit buggy, visual effect cropped up in OS X Lion.

In Mission Control, pressing Command+M enables motion blur for all Exposé animations within Mission Control and Exposé in general.

It's a fun effect, but probably a little heavy for older Macs. Besides please be warned that the effect is obviously disabled for a reason: it's really buggy, and will likely crash your user account by logging out without any warning. Thankfully it's OSX Lion, so logging back in will recover everything.

Disable the effect by pressing Command+M in Mission Control again, or by logging out or rebooting your Mac.

[crarko adds: It's there, minimally, on my old MacBook. A couple of people submitted this hint (one anonymously) and I've combined them a bit here. It was a split decision between them that this may also apply to Launchpad; I didn't notice anything when I tried it there.]

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 Tue, 13 Sep 2011 07:30:00 -0700 10.7: Handy command-line network traffic utility
Ever wonder what's using your internet connection? If you have LittleSnitch you're already there with a nice GUI, but if you're logged on to the system remotely or prefer CLI commands check out 'nettop' in OS X Lion. I noticed this when I was looking for any new network utilities in Lion. This command wasn't there in Snow Leopard or before.

I usually compile and install mtr, ntop, trafshow and other networking tools, but it's not always the safest thing to compile and install executables as root downloaded from the Internet.

Open a Terminal window, and then type nettop. You can also type:

man nettop or nettop --help for more command options.

The nice thing about this vs. other utilities is that it works as a normal user. If you put your Terminal session into fullscreen mode and have a large display (1920x1200 for me) you can see a ton of info about network connections, traffic from to, ipv4 and ipv6, tcp or udp and rou ...

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 Tue, 13 Sep 2011 07:30:00 -0700 10.7: Using two Time Machine backups
Rotating Time Machine backups has never been easier as of 10.7. Apple included in Lion a command-line interface for Time Machine which makes it completely scriptable. For the complete details on the command-line interface take a look at the man page for tmutil.

I use two Time Machine backups (see my backup strategy below for my complete backup solution) one at home and one at work. Using MarcoPolo you can set triggers and actions to automatically switch your Time Machine destination.

At home, and at work, I have 10.7 Server setup running the Time Machine service. Using MarcoPolo my laptop can determine its location, work or home, and set the IP address for my server appropriately. The following are the details on how to set this up for a Time Machine destination of an AFP share point. With small changes, this will also work for a Time Machine destination of an external hard drive.

Note: To alter t ...

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 Mon, 12 Sep 2011 07:30:00 -0700 10.6: Set a firmware password from the command line
I am in the middle of mass deploying thousands of new MacBook Airs at work, and all my previous tools to set the firmware password no longer work in late 2010 or newer models of Macs. This was due to some sort of change on firmware, but I haven't dug deep enough to know what exactly changed.

I needed a work around fast so I was looking into the Firmware Password Utility found on the Installer DVDs. There is a tool called setregproptool inside the package contents of this utility. This command line tool can be used to set the firmware password on your Mac.

My problem of course was that I did not have a new Installer DVD at all, in fact all I had were a few thousand of the USB OS X installer disks that ship with Macbook Airs. So, if you open up Terminal and browse the Mac OS X Install USB stick, you will see these contents:
$ cd /Volumes/Mac\ OS\ X\ Install
$ ls -l
total 8254080
-rw-r--r--@ 1 hadmin  staff    13447709 Dec  8   ...


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let me know which book it was and what version, so I can fix the download link properly on the server.

cheers..." target="_blank">TidBITS: TidBITS
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