458
votes
137answers
300k 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 ...
349
votes
7answers
261k views

How do I recompile Bash to avoid Shellshock (the remote exploit CVE-2014-6271 and CVE-2014-7169)?

Given that Bash 3.2 (the version shipped by OS X) is vulnerable to the remote execution exploit known as "Shell Shock" (CVE-2014-6271 and CVE-2014-7169) how do I rebuild Bash and secure my system ...
267
votes
33answers
150k 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 ...
237
votes
8answers
152k 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
202
votes
7answers
102k views

Make the green full screen window icon on Yosemite maximize windows

On Mac OS X Yosemite the green icon in every window: is by default used to make the application full screen. How do I make it work the same way as in previous versions of Mac OS X, i.e. to ...
191
votes
4answers
60k 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 ...
185
votes
10answers
108k views

How do I remove the Google Chrome notifications bell icon from the Mac OS X menu bar?

This bell icon showed up in my menu bar one day and there's no obvious way to disable it. How do I get rid of it?
183
votes
7answers
80k 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 ...
169
votes
8answers
60k views

I included emoji in my password and now I can't log in to my Account on Yosemite

I wanted to check if it's possible to use emoji in a password for my Account on OS Yosemite. It worked but I didn't realize that the login screen has only native keyboards, so I can't type emoji ...
166
votes
8answers
87k 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 ...
165
votes
107answers
52k 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 ...
158
votes
2answers
1.0m views

How to Retrieve the Wi-Fi Password of a Connected Network on a Mac

I need to find the password for a Wi-Fi network that I am already connected to. I'm using a MacBook Pro that's running OS X Lion. Any guidance is appreciated.
155
votes
3answers
87k views

What is the “rootless” feature in El Capitan, really?

I have just learned about the "Rootless" feature in El Capitan, and I am hearing things like "There is no root user", "Nothing can modify /System" and "The world will end because we can't get root". ...
152
votes
5answers
49k views

“File Open” dialog is missing sidebar items

I'm having the strangest issue since updating to OS X El Capitan. My "Open File" dialogs show the sidebar but all my main (and useful) locations are missing. Take a look at this screenshot. This ...
148
votes
5answers
77k views

How to fix brew after OSX upgrade to Yosemite?

I faced some issue with Homebrew. I upgraded to Yosemite. After the upgrade, homebrew seems to be broken. I would run any brew command and get this error /usr/local/bin/brew: ...
146
votes
7answers
64k 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 ...
139
votes
23answers
38k 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 ...
136
votes
6answers
46k 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 ...
130
votes
8answers
285k views

How to change computer name so terminal displays it in Mac OS X Mountain Lion? [duplicate]

When I setup my computer I named it "Scott's MacBook Pro". And so when I go to System preferences->Sharing, it says Scott's MacBook Pro there as my computer name. However, opening up a terminal gives ...
128
votes
5answers
66k views

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

On my linux machine I have autocomplete for branches with git. [Note we are talking about git branch completion, not bash completion (e.g. commands, files, etc). Thus NOT lane's answer at all] For ...
121
votes
4answers
178k views

How can I create a symbolic link in Terminal?

What command is used to create a symbolic link/soft link?
120
votes
3answers
65k views

List of all packages installed using Homebrew

Is it possible to and how do I get a list of all the packages installed on my Mac using Homebrew? I am not interested in packages installed outside of Homebrew.
114
votes
7answers
376k 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 ...
112
votes
57answers
21k 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 ...
104
votes
8answers
64k 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 ...
103
votes
10answers
95k 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.)
103
votes
9answers
79k 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. ...
102
votes
53answers
19k 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 ...
102
votes
4answers
51k 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 ...
102
votes
10answers
95k views

How to change the default behaviour of the fullscreen/maximize button?

There is a question that deals with the different behaviour of the fullscreen button in the window bar. There, it is shown that by doing: ⌥ + ⇧ + Click on green or outer right icon (plus icon) I can ...
101
votes
5answers
183k 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?
100
votes
13answers
40k 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 ...
99
votes
10answers
75k views

WindowServer high CPU on Yosemite

This is a follow up to So my Yosemite install is slow - what to do? Since installing Yosemite a week or so ago my machine is very sluggish. I am a web developer so I change windows/apps a lot. ...
97
votes
18answers
110k 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 ...
94
votes
10answers
205k 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 ...
92
votes
9answers
170k views

Why doesn't .bashrc run automatically?

I put some alias commands in my .bashrc file, so that they might be loaded everytime I open a new Terminal window. Yet this doesn't happen. I have to select run script: in the ...
91
votes
1answer
121k views

How do I launch Finder from terminal or command line [duplicate]

I use command line a lot, like most programmers. I want to be able to launch Finder, Safari or any other application for that matter from command line e.g. finder . where it will start Finder ...
91
votes
6answers
105k 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.)
84
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 ...
83
votes
3answers
37k views

Open Finder window from current Terminal location?

If I am in a specific path in a Terminal window, how can I open that same window in a new Finder window? Note: This is the opposite of opening a Terminal from Finder.
82
votes
9answers
29k views

Is it 'OK' to use the root user as a normal user?

I have enabled the root user on my Mac so I can log into it and run Finder etc. Being the lazy person that I am, just transferred everything from my home directory to /var/root. I'm not too sure of ...
82
votes
16answers
245k views

How to combine two images into one on a Mac?

Say I have two photos (or any images), for example with the following dimensions: +----------+ +----------+ | | | | | | | | |320 x 428 | and ...
82
votes
16answers
65k 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, ...
82
votes
13answers
86k 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 ...
82
votes
13answers
84k views

Write in NTFS using Mavericks [duplicate]

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 ...
80
votes
10answers
536k views

How to add a line break in a cell in Excel for Mac

What key combination do I have to press to create a line break in a cell in Excel for Mac 2011? The Windows combination of Alt+Enter does not work on the Mac.
79
votes
2answers
202k views

Creating A Bootable USB Of Windows 8.1 On OS X?

Reasons for wanting create such a usb include: PC is unbootable and you want to prepare a bootable USB using the ISO file that you have on your external hard drive. to install Windows 8.1 on Mac ...
79
votes
2answers
13k views

What functionality do 'marks' offer in the El Capitan Terminal?

Since upgrading to OS X El Capitan, I've noticed a change in the Terminal: Executed lines show an opening bracket on the left, and a closing bracket on the right, as shown in this screenshot: ...
79
votes
2answers
90k views

How to upgrade OpenSSL in OS X?

Today the heartbleed OpenSSL exploit was announced in the wild, which allows an attacker to surreptitiously detect and steal private server keys (allowing them to MitM and decrypt your encrypted data ...
78
votes
4answers
516k views

How do I combine two or more images to get a single pdf file?

Say I have some image files (for instance, the result of scanning some sheets) and I want to combine them into a single pdf file, each image on a different page. Is there a faster / more convenient ...

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