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How to backup your Network Locations settings Network
If you are wanting to reinstall OS X, but don't want to lose all your location settings, here is the location of the configuration file to backup:
/private/var/db/SystemConfiguration/preferences.xml
To get at it, open a terminal window and enter the following command:
 % open /private/var/db/SystemConfiguration/
The folder should pop open in the Finder, displaying (at least) the preferences.xml file. Drag it out of the SystemConfiguration folder to your desired location to back it up. It should make a copy, not move itself, as indicated by the "plus" sign that appears beside the cursor when dragging it out of the folder; if a "plus" sign doesn't appear, hold down "Option" key as you drag it to force a copy. You should not need root privileges to copy the file, as all users have read access to it.

To reinstall it on your freshly installed OS X, you will have to use the Terminal and use the "mv" command with root power, ie:
 % sudo mv (backup/file/path/)prefereces.xml \
/private/var/db/SystemConfiguration/
Wish I would've known this before I reinstalled my OS thinking my "pay as you go" internet service providers password and login info was safe in my backed up Users folders. Would've saved me time re-configuring my 15 different locations too!
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How to backup your Network Locations settings | 8 comments | Create New Account
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separate prefs for battery & AC power
Authored by: hayne on Jul 24, '02 10:46:47AM

I just noticed that my com.apple.PowerManagement.xml file (on my iBook) has separate preference values for battery & AC power. I understand that Jaguar will provide separate preference panes for battery and AC power but this means that it might be possible to get this functionality now by editing the prefs file. I haven't tried this and there is a slight worry that the current Prefs pane would get confused.



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separate prefs for battery & AC power
Authored by: chabig on Jul 24, '02 11:14:27AM

On my 10.1.5 iBook, I don't even have this file. I wonder why...



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separate prefs for battery & AC power
Authored by: chabig on Jul 24, '02 11:53:01AM

I've since discovered that I don't have that file in my ~/Library/Preferences/ directory, but I do have it in my /private/var/db/SystemConfiguration/ directory.

I made the battery and AC settings different, logged out and back in, and checked the Energy Saver pref pane to see if there was a difference between AC and battery power. There was none.

This leads me to believe that Apple is preparing for Jaguar, but that the current OS can't handle different energy saver settings for battery and AC power.



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Re: separate prefs for battery & AC power
Authored by: hayne on Jul 25, '02 02:08:37AM

I don't expect the difference to show up in the Preferences pane (that is what I alluded to by my worry that the Prefs pane might be confused) but I suspect that if you have different settings in the two sections of the file, you might get different energy-saving behaviours. You could try this out - e.g. set the sleep time for AC power to 100 minutes and for battery to 1 minute and then test it. But don't open the Prefs panel - I suspect opening it might cause it to overwrite the file with whatever is shown in the panel.



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a note of caution
Authored by: GerryA on Jul 24, '02 06:21:08PM

This is a really useful hint, and one that I've been waiting on for a long time! BUT.. a note of caution: that file also contains your hardware address (in an Appletalk field buried in there somewhere). I don't know what would happen if you transferred this file to a new machine which used both a modem connection AND was hooked up to the internet (my iBook is hooked into the internet at work, but to the modem at home)... some (maybe even all?) local networks require the computer's hardware address for the purposes of assigning an IP number. I know almost nothing about this. I just know that I have to find this number for each new machine I get, and pass it on to the network people before I get given an IP number for the new machine. Anyone have any information on this? Maybe it doesn't matter, or maybe the system somehow overwrites the hardware information dynamically (after all, it had to get into that file in the first place..). Just my tuppence worth (a quaint British expression..!).



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Re: a note of caution
Authored by: hayne on Jul 25, '02 02:01:57AM

[I]some (maybe even all?) local networks require the computer's hardware address for the purposes of assigning an IP number. I know almost nothing about this. I just know that I have to find this number for each new machine I get, and pass it on to the network people before I get given an IP number for the new machine. [/I]

This is something that the corporate network administrators often do in order to keep more control of the network. By configuring their routers etc with your MAC (hardware) address, they can prevent any other computer (e.g. a laptop brought in from outside) being used on the network. But it is possible to spoof your MAC address (i.e. to make it seem that your machine has some other MAC address) so this only stops the less capable intruders. This is not something that is necessary - the ARP protocols allow for automatic discovery of the MAC address that matches an IP address.



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Huh?
Authored by: pecosbill on Jul 25, '02 02:40:33PM

Is it me, or does this sound really stupid on Apple's part? Shouldn't files like this be stored in the /Library tree?

Thanks for the heads up. I would have been bitten by this as well if I do my own flavor of a clean install of Jaguar.



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Network Locations settings on Panther
Authored by: gio on May 10, '05 08:37:42AM
The new location for the file in Panther (Mac OS 10.3.x) is:
/Library/Preferences/SystemConfiguration/preferences.plist


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