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Is there an app or setting that lets me save (persist) and load workspaces (or "Spaces") on my Mac?

i.e. as a freelance software developer I want it to appear as if I have a completely fresh Mac dedicated to each of my clients' projects -- one Mac per project

Obviously the way to REALLY do this would be to have a whole virtual machine for each project, but that's definitely overkill. A good compromise might be to make a User Account for each project, but still that is more trouble than it's worth.

The bottom line is that I want to keep everything I do in one project separate from everything I do in another project, but simply being able to Save and Load workspaces as has been common for years in the Unix world would be a 95% solution.

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What does workspace mean to you? Scripting a certain set of apps to open and positioning the windows of that app? Changing the background? Anything else? –  bmike Jan 24 '13 at 22:31
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1 Answer 1

In practice, having a user account for each client actually works very well. The keychain contains items just for that client and you aren't distracted by your work when you are working on client's items. It's all about everything you need for that client.

Between webmail and web project management - you might even be able to keep some critical items out of the user account and be able to access it from multiple places.

I find that iOS is so good on managing the things I need, that I'm using "my" stuff on a computer so much less that one account per big project and a catch all consulting account to keep my personal account clear of work and be very nice for automated billing, crystal focus on the task at hand as well as clean separation of files and configurations where I can put things in a shared folder, but need to take a step rather than having everything all jumbled.

Fast User switching also helps to pop back to another account quickly when needed.

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As a side-question, are there any Mac apps that "assist" in the management of a large number of user accounts on one box? –  themirror Jan 24 '13 at 22:39
    
Also, how would I make a sort of "boilerplate" to start with when I get a new client project and create a new User Account to handle it? –  themirror Jan 24 '13 at 22:40
    
You can do two things - edit the system template that is used to create all new accounts or clone an account and clean the things / make it as you wish. Then pop that folder in /Users with the short name of the account you are about to create. The system will notice you have a home folder and ask if it should be used. When you say yes, it chowns/chmods and makes the ACL all correct for the new user. I much prefer the latter - drop a home folder as I like and then create the account. Both should be covered here in questions for details on implementation. –  bmike Jan 24 '13 at 22:58
    
Thank you much! I think I followed your instructions by duplicating a folder in /Users, but the system never "asked me" about a "home folder". –  themirror Jan 25 '13 at 1:18
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