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  5. Only Mac OS X (not iOS, OS 9, compatible, etc) applications. All versions of OS X are accepted, but if the application requires a specific version please note.

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locked by patrix Nov 24 '13 at 9:28

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15  
Voted to close — a good question, but we really should avoid subjective ones here. –  apostlion Aug 17 '10 at 20:19
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@Apostlion: Simply because it's subjective does not mean it can't be answered. There are (community defined) "good" applications that are useful on a daily basis. –  Josh K Aug 17 '10 at 20:22
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Voted to reopen - it is subjective, but a popular and useful style of question, if kept as a wiki and not repeated too much. These questions are mostly accepted on gadgets.stackexhange.com for example. –  Jon Hadley Aug 17 '10 at 21:08
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Can we make this Community Wiki? And also 1 app per answer? Much easier to check if something has already been said and to edit to add information about said app. Thank you. –  Loïc Wolff Aug 19 '10 at 20:39
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I did a lot of cleanup. Changed all the app names to ## (because it was the most commonly used in the existing answers. Moved links so that they were within the app names. Removed some first-person descriptors. –  Robert S Ciaccio Aug 23 '10 at 3:18
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239 Answers 239

Cyberduck

for Upload, Download and Sync of FTP, SFTP, WebDav, iCloud, S3, ...

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Xcode

A good IDE for cocoa developers. Xcode 5 is now available on the Mac App Store.

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4  
+1 use it more than all other apps combined. –  Nippysaurus Aug 31 '10 at 23:12
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Xcode is great. It is the reason I got a Mac. –  Josiah Oct 14 '12 at 22:44
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Gimp

Gimp icon

Very powerful and free and open source image editor, inspired by PhotoShop. Has layers, RGB and indexed modes, and more tools and filters than you can shake a stick at.

Since version 2.8 Gimp is OS X native.

Screenshots - Features

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PogoPlug

There's a software version as well as the hardware box that creates a cloud server. The software version allows me to set a folder or drive on my Mac and link to it so I can let others access. I know there are other ways to do this, but for me the $20 ($30 now, I think) was well spent as the software is simple and no glitches.

If you have a good friend and you both agree to leave your computers running, you can use the other's extra drive to store your backup with no monthly fee, just install a decent size drive at the friend's house.

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Entropy

dEntropy Logo

I use it as my daily productivity booster since it moves all files I haven't touched within the last week from my Desktop into my archive. It has many more features you may find interesting. Here is a trailer.


Disclaimer: I'm the creator. Ask me anything. ;)

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Unclutter

Main features:

  • Instant, configurable access even in full screen mode
  • File Storage, to keep your Desktop clean from temporary files
  • Notes, your digital notepad
  • Clipboard preview, so you always know what you're about to share
  • Draggable cards that can stick on top of other windows
  • Retina display support

enter image description here

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CheatSheet

Just hold the a bit longer to get a list of all active short cuts of the current application. It's as simple as that.

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Shift It

(Uses the same principles as SizeUp, but free)

This application will let you resize and move your windows without having to using a mouse. Here are some of things you can do with Shift It:

  • Shift the focused window to left/right/top/bottom half of the screen.
  • Resize the focused window to fill the whole screen.
  • Move the focused window to the center of the screen.

Shift It is a great tool that lets you organize your windows. Now you can read documents side-by-side without having the pain of manually resizing the windows.

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Stickies

It's Apple's program for taking notes. Very minimalistic and fast.

Your notes can be:

  • formatted how you like
  • edited with hyperlinks
  • drag and drop pictures
  • export as *.txt
  • custom color of note

Stickies Icon

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Audio Hijack Pro

Audio Hijack allows you to record any sound from your Mac or input device. You can also mute certain applications. This is my go-to-application for any audio recording.

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Prism by Mozilla Labs

Prism allows you to turn any webpage into an application. I've used this numerous times.

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FinderPop

This tool provides a ton of enhancements to the contextual menu. It allows you to select move,copy,alias a selected item (icon) to pretty much any folder via pop-up hierarchical folder lists. Built-in preview stuff, and more.

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Moom

Moom is a very configurable window management tool. Some useful features include convenient and fast window placement and resizing using grids, saving window layout profiles, configurable hot keys, and much more.

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SecondBar

SecondBar adds a second menu bar to your secondary monitor. Although there are a few bugs, it's a great little application.

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Emacs 24

Best text editor ever...Supports VIM bindings plus has org-mode and can run a shell, edit directories, view images, etc. Make sure to use the built-in package manager to load add-ons. Solarized-dark is an excellent color scheme.

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Terminal

Terminal.app opens a UNIX terminal and allows you to access many power-user tools and features, just as you would on a machine running Linux or BSD.

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Ditto. Open permanently and the main reason I moved from PC's - a decent unix access point. –  Jon Hadley Aug 23 '10 at 7:24
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iTerm is even better. –  neoneye Aug 28 '10 at 12:02
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What about iTerm2 ? –  Studer Aug 30 '10 at 18:45
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Visor is a great addition--a keystroke slides your terminal in from the top of the screen. –  Dan Ray Dec 2 '10 at 14:32
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Forget terminal + visor. iTerm 2 offers visor plus much much more... Switched to few weeks ago, will never go back. –  Vincent Apr 24 '11 at 15:42
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Monosnap

Monosnap is a free screenshot program for Mac OS X and Windows. The program allows users to create screenshots, annotate them and upload them to the cloud.

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Airmail

After last year Sparrow acquisition from Google and development freeze, Airmail is new, actively developed mail client. It does not hide it's Sparrow roots, but exceeds it and new features are constantly added.

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Glui

I never really enjoyed using Skitch, even before Evernote bought them. Not too long ago I heard about Glui and have fallen in love ever since.

It's quick, provides some useful annotating tools, uploads to Dropbox and the automatically copies the share url to your clipboard.

Really has improved my workflow as a programmer. Makes it super easy to share screens when working with others.

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Adium

Adium is a free instant messaging application for Mac OS X that can connect to AIM, MSN, Jabber, Yahoo, and more. It provides enhanced security by supporting the OTR messaging protocol out of the box.

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Adium is not needed anymore starting with Lion :) –  sorin Jul 2 '11 at 14:14
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It can do many! Even Facebook. Yeah not all of them but some of those are pretty obscure. I must say the iChat updates in Lion made me ditch Adium. –  Paul Eccles Aug 1 '11 at 17:34
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KeePassX password vault

KeePassX is a cross platform secure password saver. Like Keychain, but you can use it on your mobile phone and windows computers.

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you really should consider lastpass. I abandoned my keepassX. –  Cawas Dec 23 '10 at 12:40
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I use keepassX because it is open source software, vs lastpass, 1password which are not. I'm no fan of the non-native look, but my best alternative - and I would love to be corrected on this - is to use an encrypted textfile –  HectorMalot Jan 27 '13 at 12:19
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Firefox

Firefox is an open-source web browser from Mozilla, based off Netscape.

With a few OS X specific tweaks it can be made to behave like a OS X browser should, including font rendering, Keychain Access and Retina display support.

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@am1 could make your answer community wiki, please? –  Loïc Wolff Aug 20 '10 at 12:14
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@Loïc Wolff I make it. –  Am1rr3zA Aug 20 '10 at 12:16
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Firefox and Mac OS X just don't mix :( Safari also has add-ons :) –  rightfold Aug 25 '10 at 12:46
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Some things still put Firefox above competition: intelligent (learning) address bar autocomplete; huge selection of good add-ons (Safari or Chrome don't even come close). Too bad Firefox is slower than Chrome... –  Jonik Aug 28 '10 at 9:41
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Firefox is sssllllooowww. –  Jonathan. Nov 1 '10 at 19:32
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XtraFinder

XtraFinder add Tabs and features to Mac Finder.

• Tabs.

• Dual Panel & Dual Window.

• Cut & Paste.

• Colorful icons in Sidebar.

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Tweetbot for Mac

Though relatively new. Tweetbot for Mac is bringing the same innovation to the Mac platform that it's had established on iOS for a while now.

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Path Finder

Path Finder = Finder + Automatic viewer + Shell + Screen Capture + Almost everything you need

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Hex Editor

Practically every editor, including text editors, lie about the contents of files. Even programming languages change or omit certain characters. In general this is intended to help you see what they think you are looking for, but sometimes you just want to see things how they really are

Note: The original hexeditor I linked to is no longer on offer, so I have updated the link with the suggestion from neoneye

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Debookee

Debookee is a network traffic analyzer that allows you to see your traffic by protocols: HTTP, HTTPS, TCP, DHCP, DNS, SIP etc ...

It can also scan all the devices present on your network, and intercept the traffic of any of them, perfect to see what your iPhone or tablet is sending over the network.

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Vienna

Viennna is a free open source RSS/Atom reader. Very flexible and version 3 will have Google Reader support.

Vienna main window

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Secrets

Secrets is a PrefPane that lets users access hidden settings in many Mac OS X applications. It is also open source and user driven, any user can submit a secret and have it immediately available in the Secrets for anyone to use.

Secrets PrefPane

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CCleaner

One of best cleaning utility.

CCleaner is the no. 1 cleaning utility for Windows PC. In Mac it does the same function, cleaning temp files, cookies, cache etc. for making more space available. The tools section provides utilities to uninstall an application, change startup option, erase free space and manage permissions.

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