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Making Cmd-K = Search in Safari

April 9, 2008

Maybe I’m one of the few die-hard Firefox users on OS X (it doesn’t seem likely), but whenever I use Safari, it always drives me nuts that Cmd-K doesn’t go to Search.

Safari Cmd K Search

Click for full-sized example

Fortunately, it’s easy to fix.

Go to System Preferences, Keyboard & Mouse, Keyboard Shortcuts, and press the little “+” sign in the lower left to add a new shortcut. Select Safari.app as the Application, enter “Google Search…” as the Menu Title, and press Cmd-K in the Keyboard Shortcut field.

Click “add” and you’re all done.

(From 5ThirtyOne via Lifehacker)

What Time Machine leaves behind

April 4, 2008

Time Machine
I mentioned earlier that while I like Time Machine a lot, depending on it as your sole backup is rather fraught with peril.

This post on macosxhints gives another good reason — apparently some applications (including notably, VMWare) silently exclude data files from Time Machine.
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How to back up your Mac – Remote Backup

April 2, 2008

Easy and Secure Mac Backups

Remote Backup

If you’ve followed along this far, you know we mentioned previously why you need several styles of backup, you’re rocking a solid clone backup, and you’ve got Time Machine covering multiple versions of at least your most important files.

That should be enough, right?

Bzzzt!

What could possibly happen to your Mac that could also affect the backups sitting next to it (or even in the same office or home)? Wait — let’s not cite potential specifics and jinx anybody; surely you’ve thought of some ugly possibilities.

That’s why we need the remote backup.
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How to back up your Mac – Time Machine

April 2, 2008

Easy and Secure Mac Backups

Time Machine

As I mentioned previously, Time Machine isn’t enough — you need a good clone backup first. But once you have that, Time Machine provides a safety net, as well as giving you the ability to go back and recover older versions of your files.
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How to back up your Mac – Clone Backup

April 2, 2008

Easy and Secure Mac Backups

Clone Backups

As I mentioned previously, a good clone backup is your FIRST line of defense — in case of disaster, it’s simple and flexible, and gets you back in business FAST.
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How to backup your Mac – Easily and Securely

April 2, 2008

Easy and Secure Mac Backups
I used to be a “real men don’t back up, they learn data recovery” kind of guy. After a few trips through the canyon though, data recovery begins to lose it’s appeal.

Over time I’ve gotten a lot more religious about backups, and have came up with four rules that have to be followed before I feel like my stuff is actually secure:

  • Backups have to be automatic
  • Recovery needs to be simple
  • Some stuff needs to be recoverable from older backups
  • Important stuff needs to be backed up off-site

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Replace Microsoft’s Expired Remote Desktop for Mac with CoRD

April 1, 2008


I manage somewhere around a dozen servers running Windows 2003 Server, so I use the Microsoft Remote Desktop Connection feature constantly. However, I don’t use their Mac client — it’s buggy, it’s slow, and it’s limited. And as of yesterday, it’s expired.

Of course, there IS no newer copy available from Microsoft. The RDC does still sort of work, it just turns off even more features. But hey, that’s the good news — because if you’ve been suffering along with Microsoft’s RDC client on a Mac, you now have a perfect excuse to replace it with CoRD.
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Installing Java 6 on Mac OS X

March 30, 2008

Mac OS X
As I mentioned previously, installing Woopra on a Mac requires installing the beta of Java 6. Unfortunately, how to get that done may not be terribly obvious to some users (it wasn’t to me, to begin with).
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Mail.appetizer for Leopard

March 27, 2008

Mac OS X

Woohoo! Mail.appetizer is back!.

Mail.appetizer is a great little freeware “notifier” for mail.app — the mail program that comes with Apples OS X.

What it does is pop up a little translucent window on your screen with the sender, subject and an excerpt of the message each time you receive mail. It also has buttons to mark the message as read, delete it, or go to mail to view it.
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OS X Spotlight Slowdown

March 21, 2007

Macintosh OS XI’ve been tracking an annoying “slowdown” on my MacBook Pro for awhile now; just every now and again, the system will seem to take an inordinate amount of time to do something, and then clear back up again.

This often seemed to involve mounting or dismounting external volumes.

Looking at this in Activity Monitor, I found that the “MDS” process was taking 90%+ of the CPU, and about 1.5GB of physical memory. Digging around in Console, I also found a bunch of crash logs.

MDS is the OS X Spotlight indexing service which, much like an over-eager spaniel, decides to sniff a new volume to death whenever you try to mount it. Worse, it will occasionally pine away for a dismounted volume, chewing up CPU time and memory trying to find it.

It appears to be particularly problematic if you have a removable drive that’s a duplicate of the boot drive (such as you might have, for instance, from doing a clone backup).

My first instinct was to just disable Spotlight and its sniffer routine entirely; I only use it once in a blue moon, but I was a little reluctant to just shut it down altogether.

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