367
votes
132answers
260k views

Please share your hidden OS X features or tips and tricks

Do you know any hidden or little-known nice feature of Mac OS X? It doesn't matter what it is—maybe just a short terminal command or a keyboard shortcut. Share your experiences on hidden Mac OS ...
146
votes
107answers
50k views

What tiny thing in Lion makes you smile or has caught you off guard?

I would like to call for a place to list some little things that surprise you about Lion. There are so many articles and lists of all the new features with information overload, I would rather focus ...
146
votes
4answers
35k views

How can I disable animation when switching desktops in Lion?

I would very much like to disable the sliding animation that occurs when switching desktops via ctrl+→/← or ctrl+[number] in Lion. This was previously accomplished in previous versions ...
142
votes
6answers
68k views

How can I configure Mac Terminal to have color ls output?

How can I configure Mac Terminal to have color ls output? I am using MacOS 10.5
127
votes
26answers
54k views

What Window Management Options exist for OS X?

I'd like to do something with my windows on OS X, where something includes options like re-arranging, moving, re-sizing, remembering positions, cloning across Spaces, etc. What options exist? Rules ...
127
votes
7answers
47k views

Why isn't iTunes shuffle random?

This is a problem that has bugged me for the last 5 years, across multiple devices, operating systems and installs of iTunes and iPods. I have found that the iTunes shuffle feature does not randomly ...
107
votes
22answers
15k views

Is there a quick way to lock my Mac?

On Windows you can hit the keys Windows+L to lock your computer if you step away. I don't want to have to remember if sleep currently asks for a password, if there is a time out where my screen isn't ...
103
votes
57answers
20k views

What tiny thing in iOS 5 makes you smile, or has caught you off guard?

iOS 5 is here! Geofencing, new Voices in Voice Command/Siri, and Notification Center for all! We all know how heartfelt iOS makes you seem (Cards), how much control it gives you for managing your ...
98
votes
6answers
35k views

How do I disable Chrome's two-finger back/forward navigation?

In dev builds of Chrome, they've implemented, refined, and released two-finger swipes left/right in order to browse back/forward in the browser history. Unfortunately, you can accidentally trigger it ...
90
votes
53answers
17k views

What features of Mavericks are beneficial to you?

This question serves to share and collect the enhancements that make a large difference to how you use your Mac. Please post one feature per answer. Please also check to see if your answer has ...
79
votes
53answers
14k views

What un(der)-documented features have you stumbled upon in Mountain Lion?

This question serves to share and collect the enhancements which are not documented by Apple, or documented poorly. Please justify your answer; if it is something that is well documented by Apple and ...
79
votes
16answers
56k views

Why is Git not found after installing OS X Lion?

I just upgraded to OS X Lion and now cannot initialize Git where it used to work fine: $ git add . -bash: git: command not found I'm new to Git and to programming, so I'm sure it's a quick fix, ...
65
votes
22answers
61k views

OS X Terminal “must have” utilities

I've just read with pleasure, and learned a lot from these questions : OS X Terminal Tips and Tricks OS X Hidden features and nice tips & tricks OS X Applications you can't live without But I ...
61
votes
4answers
103k views

How does iMessage know that the recipient is an iOS 5 device?

When you send a message using the Messages app, iOS seems to magically figure out that the recipient is on iOS 5 and automatically switches over to iMessage (blue messages instead of green SMSs). ...
61
votes
3answers
8k views

Can I disable the Lion animation when switching to/from fullscreen apps?

In Lion there is an animation when switching to and from full screen applications. Full screen apps are great, especially on a 11" screen, but this animation is getting very annoying. Is there a way ...
60
votes
16answers
47k views

Is there a Mac OS X Terminal version of the “free” command in Linux systems?

On Linux, I often use the free command to see the current amount of free and used memory in the system. For example: $ free total used free shared buffers cached ...
57
votes
8answers
30k views

How to simulate slow internet connections on the mac

What's a good software solution to slow down internet connections on the mac for testing and simulations? My primary need is when testing code in the iPhone / iOS simulator, so slowing down the ...
57
votes
7answers
29k views

What is the difference between iTerm2 and Terminal?

I keep hearing that iTerm2 is much better than Terminal. I downloaded iTerm2 today and played around with it, but I couldn't see what is so much better about iTerm2. iTerm2 seemed just like Terminal. ...
57
votes
3answers
4k views

Can I get back Snow-Leopard-like application hiding (Cmd-H) in Lion?

Till Mac OS X Snow Leopard, pressing ⌘+H while using an application did two things... The application hid itself from view. The application placed itself at the end of the ⌘+⇥ ...
56
votes
13answers
15k views

Keyboard shortcut for restoring applications from the Mac OS X Dock?

Is there a keyboard shortcut to restore a minimised application window from the Dock? Almost all Apple Mac OSX applications respond to the Apple + M command which minimises the current application ...
55
votes
7answers
174k views

How can I manually delete old backups to free space for Time Machine?

I use a Time Capsule for backup and now I want the drive to back up data from an extra Mac. But the drive is filled up with old backups from Mac 1. There simply is not enough space available for the ...
54
votes
4answers
24k views

How can I trigger a Notification Center notification from an AppleScript or shell script?

I'd love to be able to take advantage of 10.8's Notification Center features in AppleScripts and shell scripts I write. Is there a built-in command or a third-party library I can use from either an ...
54
votes
9answers
46k views

Write in NTFS using Mavericks

I was able to read and write NTFS filesystems normally in Mountain Lion, but after the upgrade this stopped to work. I installed ntfs-3g and fuse4x using homebrew in Mountain Lion and followed the ...
54
votes
8answers
124k views

How can I mount an ext4 file system on OS X?

Is there a safe, stable application for reading from and writing to ext4 file systems on Mac OS X? If not, what's the best way to access the contents of an ext4 file system on ...
51
votes
6answers
40k views

How to remove unused MacPorts packages?

Whenever I install a program via MacPorts, it gets and installs lots of dependencies. When I uninstall said program, how do I make MacPorts recursively remove all unused dependencies with it?
51
votes
11answers
69k views

How do I turn off App Store notifications in Mountain Lion

The App Store on Mountain Lion pushes update notifications through Notification Center. Unfortunately, this also happens for users that are not system administrators (and so cannot run the App Store). ...
49
votes
4answers
24k views

What do I type to produce the command symbol (⌘) in Mac OS X?

What combination of keys do I press to produce the command symbol (⌘) on Mac OS X? (I copied the above symbol from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Command_key.)
49
votes
7answers
28k views

I am missing the option to see the remaining battery life as time in the menubar?

In previous versions of OS X the battery indicator in the menubar included options to show the remaining battery life as percentage or time (or nothing). In Mountain Lion, there's only an option to ...
48
votes
5answers
26k views

Isn't Inactive memory a waste of resources?

I'm looking for explanation of memory usage on my machine especially in light of the example in this screenshot below: I understand what is Free and Active means But what are the meanings of Wired ...
48
votes
3answers
17k views

What versions of OS X are affected by Heartbleed?

What versions of OS X come default with the affected versions of OpenSSL? All Internet traffic right now is clogged with the same generic information in regards to the Heartbleed bug, without any ...
48
votes
3answers
3k views

Where did the ~/Library folder go in Lion?

I just installed Lion, and I can't find the Library folder in my user folder. Does the folder no longer exist? If it doesn't, where are my preferences? If it does, how do I get to it?
48
votes
13answers
39k views

How to stop OS X from writing Spotlight and Trash files to memory cards and USB sticks?

When plugging a USB stick into a Mac, OS X creates a number of hidden files on the stick, including a Spotlight index and Trash folder. Example from the terminal for a USB stick "Untitled": $ ls -a ...
48
votes
5answers
63k views

How do I install GCC via Homebrew?

I am using Homebrew exclusively (i.e. I don’t, and won’t, use MacPorts or Fink). I also want to keep manual installations to a bare minimum.1 … But how can I install GCC? First of all, I’ve of ...
48
votes
5answers
192k views

Is there an iMessage client for Windows?

My wife's iPhone has iOS 5 and hence iMessage installed. I would like to be able to chat with her using my Windows computer. What options are available for this? Is there a Windows client or any ...
47
votes
2answers
17k views

What are pros and cons for MacPorts, Fink and Homebrew?

I'm just migrating from Ubuntu Linux to Mac, and everything is new and I'm re-learning a lot of stuff. On Linux I had the excellent apt-get to manage software packages. I googled for an alternative ...
46
votes
5answers
75k views

Can I open files in TextEdit from the Terminal in Mac OS X?

I frequently find that a terminal command to open a file in TextEdit would be very handy. Does such a command exist on Mac OS X?
46
votes
3answers
5k views

Consequences of deleting .DS_Store

If I manually delete a .DS_Store file from a directory, what's the worst that can happen? What important information might I lose?
46
votes
7answers
34k views

Why won't closing the lid sleep my MacBook Pro with external monitor attached after upgrading to Lion?

Up until yesterday (with Snow Leopard), closing the lid would cause my MacBook to sleep whether or not the external monitor was connected. Since upgrading to Lion last night, closing the lid when the ...
45
votes
5answers
25k views

How do I run an app in Full Screen mode on OS X Lion on my second monitor?

How do I get an app to run in Full Screen mode on OS X Lion on my second monitor? It seems to be stuck on my first monitor, and I'd like to move it.
44
votes
5answers
5k views

What's the quickest way to get a graphic on the clipboard saved to disk?

I have a graphic on the clipboard on OS X. What's the quickest way to get it onto disk as a png or jpg?
44
votes
12answers
50k views

What file comparison tool can I use under OS X?

My favorite file comparison tool was Beyond Compare but since I recently switched to OS X, i'm no longer able to use it and I'm looking for an alternative, preferably a free one. Update: I made the ...
43
votes
44answers
23k views

What hidden features have you found in iOS 6?

This is the required hidden gems questions for iOS 6. Here are the rules: One feature per answer Also include how you use the feature or why it is useful Must be an under-documented feature. No ...
43
votes
5answers
38k views

What is installd, and why is it eating my CPU?

My Macbook is frying my lap, and the CPU monitor is going crazy: over 200% CPU being used by something called "installd". What is it? Can I kill it? (OS X 10.8.)
42
votes
44answers
11k views

What are some undocumented iPhone features?

With included documentation as sparse as Apple's, there are plenty of them...
42
votes
5answers
5k views

Do Macs need to be defragmented?

I don't see any application to defragment my Mac (running OS X). Is defragmenting not necessary for Mac OS X? If so, why not?
42
votes
8answers
14k views

Why is it not possible to use the “cut” command to manipulate a file in the Finder?

On OS X 10.6 (Snow Leopard), I don't seem to be able to us the "Cut" command on a file in the Finder, like you can do in Windows Explorer on Microsoft Windows. (In Windows, once you select a file and ...
42
votes
3answers
17k views

git auto-complete for *branches* at the command line?

On my linux machine I have autocomplete for branches with git. For example I can type git checkout [TAB] and get a list of branches. Or I can type git checkout feb* [TAB] to get all branches that ...
42
votes
12answers
5k views

How long can I expect my system to be unusable during an upgrade to OS X Lion?

I just downloaded Lion and am pretty eager to install it, but I can use every minute I have, so I'd rather not install it now if it means my system is unusable for 30+ minutes. How long should I ...
42
votes
8answers
15k views

Can I make a DIY Fusion Drive?

I have a Mac Mini with two drives: a 256GB SSD and a 500GB HDD. From what I've read, the new Fusion Drive does all of it's magic in software, using the Core Storage APIs. Can I get my setup to ...
42
votes
4answers
8k views

Remap “Home” and “End” to beginning and end of line

Most of my computing time is spent in Linux (with occasional time in Windows). On these platforms the Home and End keys universally jump to the beginning or end of the current line. I am gradually ...

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