Nov 12, '03 10:17:00AM • Contributed by: adams4
Actually, this is more of a peeve. In Jag-wire (I wonder how Steve Jobs pronounces Panther?), setting up a user that only has the Simplified Finder made administration in a university (where I work) a breeze. As part of this setup, I had the My Applications window open as a Login item (i.e., it was set in the Login preference pane for the "kiosk user").
In Panther, however, even though the system will allow you to add a folder to the Startup Items section of the Accounts preference pane, if the Simple Finder is set for an account, the folder doesn't open, even though (in this case) it's the My Applications folder! To work around this problem, I created a simple AppleScript (compiled as an application) which fires off during the login process. The script is as follows:
tell application "Finder" open folder "My Applications" of folder ¬ "Managed Items" of folder "Library" of folder ¬ "patron" of folder "Users" end tell
While I'm talking about kiosks, I'll mention that I also dealt with all the files left on the Desktop of the kiosk account. Even if the Simple Finder is used, files are still downloaded to somewhere (generally, the Desktop). To overcome that problem (usually it's PDF files piling up), I added a simple cron command to deal with the problem, redirecting the output of the cron job to /dev/null. The redirect is necessary, since the cron job runs literally every minute, and sometimes there's nothing to delete. If there's nothing to delete, the command complains, which in turn, cron sends the complaint back to the sendmail account of the user running the job. Since no one would ever check that mail (much less every minute), the output needs to be sent immediately into oblivion. The command for the cron job is:
rm ~/Desktop/* 2>/dev/null
(For those not in the know, the 2> portion refers to the standard error of the job; an error is returned if there are no files to delete (rm).
I'll also take this opportunity to gripe about Dock items for a Simple Finder user; there's no nice way to set them. You simply get the Finder on the left, and the My Applications, My Documents, and Shared folders on the right. Period. Does anyone know if it's OK to edit the plist to insert the wanted item? In this case, it's the icon for Safari, so even if the My Applications window isn't open, people can still click the Safari icon.