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Disable the column-view preview panel Desktop
I've been following OSX since beta and I haven't seen this tip anywhere. If you edit the com.apple.finder.plist file in /Users/username/Library/Preferences, you can disable the preview pane in column view.

NOTE: All angle brackets are shown as square brackets in the following examples -- do not change them from angle brackets!

Open the file in TexEdit or some other text editor and scroll to the following area:
[key]StandardViewOptions[/key]
[dict]
[key]clmv[/key]
Within that [clmv] section, look for:
[key]ShowPreview[/key]
[true/]
Change the "true" to "false" (leave the "/"!) and then relaunch (via force-quit) the Finder. Now when you open column view, you will no longer get the preview pane! I found this out simply by looking at the preferences in the terminal using the "defaults" command and testing different values.

Editor's addition: There are a couple of other keys that do interesting things as well. Changing ColumnShowFolderArrow to 'false' removes the right-facing arrow that lets you drill down; changing ColumnShowIcons to 'false' removes the icons in front of the object names.

On my work machine, the entire [clmv] section was missing from finder.plist. I got a copy of the entire file from kaboom, and inserted the [clmv] key into my finder.plist file. If you're missing this section, too, read the rest of the article for a how-to on what you need to insert.
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SNAX - a Cocoa Finder replacement Apps
If you haven't had the chance yet, check out SNAX from CocoaTech. SNAX is a shareware Finder-replacement written entirely in Cocoa, and it has a number of interesting features, including:
  • A customizable toolbar
  • Contextual menus
  • Multiple Get Info windows
  • A preview pane which can be shown or hidden
  • Full keyboard navigation
  • Spring-loaded folders
  • A global menu showing running processes
Take a look at this screenshot of the main SNAX window to get an idea of some of SNAX' features. I've played with it for a couple of hours now, and I'm quite impressed. The speed is good, and it seems to offer most of the Finder's features and more without quite so much overhead.

UPDATE: On Friday, 10/5/2001, Snax 1.1 was released. This release is optimized for OS X 10.1, and includes numerous bug fixes, speed tweaks, and a few new features. It's notably faster than the previous version on my 10.1 installation...

If you like SNAX, you can do something even more interesting with it. I snapped this screenshot of my OS X 10.1 box earlier tonight. Notice that Snax is running but the Finder is not. That's because Snax is my Finder. It's relatively trivial to replace the Finder with any program you wish, and I replaced it with SNAX for this screenshot.

Read the rest of this article if you'd like to find out how to make SNAX your permanent Finder...
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Save drive space during Dev Tools install Install
If (like me), you're installing the Developer Tools just to get the compiler and you have no intention of developing Mac software, you can save a large amount of drive space during the installation. Once the installer has launched and you've hit "Continue" a couple of times, you'll see a button for a Custom installation. Click that and then deselect the Developer Documentation. The documentation requires about 270mb of drive space. You can also uncheck the "WebObjects" item (the last one in the list) unless you're developing older WebObjects applications. You could also choose to uncheck the Developer Examples, which consist of source code snippets for use in developing.

I turned off all three during the install, and haven't noticed any issues in using the new 10.1 compiler as of yet. If you do have issues, you can simply re-run the installer and re-enable those pieces you'd like to add back in.
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Use 'Show Info' on multiple files Desktop
not a great hint but useful nonetheless, the show info menu in Get Info (command-I) now allows you to change more than one file at a time and if you wish to change the 'open with app' type it gives you a list of all possible apps, so you dont have to go find the right one. you can also change all 'other' types too, so all your .img files can be set to open with diskcopy or .sit files with stuffit.
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Change monitor brightness from the keyboard Desktop
To change the brightness of your screen, hit F14 or F15. This may not work on all hardware, it does work on a cube w. flatpanel display and X 10.1

(cubist)

[Editor: This had no effect on my third-party monitor ... which is not surprising. If it had worked, I would have been truly amazed!]
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Getting XDarwin running in 10.1 UNIX
/. is running a slashback ditty about users having trouble with XDarwin under 10.1. I've got it running fine, here's the gotchas.

Firstly, the general installation overview is summarized in a previous MacOSXHints article, so I won't rehash that here. Once you have xf86 4.1 and XDarwin 1.0a3 installed, minor tweakage is needed for great justice. The problem is that the xinit binary is not in the default shell's path, I fixed that at the user level by creating a .cshrc file (which belongs in your home directory: cd ~ to get there). Here's how: Obviously, use vi or whatever to create the file. For the contents, first issue this command to an open shell window:

echo $PATH

This will give you your current (and likely your default) path. Highlight the path and copy it. In your newly created .cshrc file, you need a line saying:

setenv PATH [paste default $path here]:/usr/X11R6/bin:/usr/local/X11/bin

You may also want to add a line for the man pages; the procedure is the same, but use echo $MANPATH for the default, and:

sentenv MANPATH [paste default $manpath here]:/usr/X11R6/man

(Note-it's hard to see due to the formatting, but between the copy/paste stuff and the new lines is a :, make sure it gets there)

After doing the above, I have a working XDarwin under 10.1. While you're hacking your .cshrc file, you may also want to check out another previous MacOSXHints article on ssh-see the first comment for another tasty usage of the .cshrc file... Also note-I'm sure this can be done at the system level, but don't know offhand where it's done, if anybody knows by all means post it on this thread...
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Email downloading troubles in mail.app Apps
From the X4U mailing list, it appears there's a bug in mail.app in 10.1 that only affects some users who run mail.app with no rules enabled. In some circumstances, mail.app will not delete the messages on the server, leading to repetitive downloads of the same email over and over (even those that have been deleted and emptied from the trash). Cricket (an Apple software engineer) writes to the list with the solution:

"Do you have any Mail rules set up? If not, delete your MessageSorting.plist (from ~/Library/Mail) and restart Mail. That should take care of the problem, which should only affect some POP users that have no rules set up. We plan to fix this in a Software Update."
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10.1 and stall on startup System
Ever since I upgraded my Powerbook to 10.1, I've been experiencing a hang on boot-up when the OS indicates "Starting Directory Services". This delay has been as long as five minutes or more.

I wasn't getting this on my G4 tower, so I knew that it wasn't necessarily a 10.1 thing, but something that 10.1 brought out. I looked through my message logs (/var/log/message.log) and saw that lookupd was attempting to contact a lot of other machines and failing (lookupd is a software agent that acts as a network information broker).

I also remembered that I had been fooling around with lookupd, trying to set up an ad filter for web browsing and had added a directory called "locations" in my Netinfo database as part of that. I removed the directory using Netinfo Manager and now my Powerbook boots and shuts down quicker than it ever did, even in OS 9.

[Editor's note: This specific tip may not affect a lot of users, but the general tip is to make sure you check the log files to see what's happening to your machine, wether it's a startup stall or any other abnormal behavior.]
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Keyboard navigation of the menu bar and dock System

One of the nicer features in OS X 10.1 has hardly been mentioned anywhere. I'd completely overlooked it myself, and it took a nice tip from Luis R. to enlighten me. With the release of 10.1, Mac users can now use their machines without a mouse. I'd noticed the Universal Access panel, which enables things like Sticky Keys and Mouse Keys, but it seemed like a real pain to use the numeric keypad to move the mouse pointer to the menubar whenever you wanted it.

Luis pointed me to the Keyboard prefernces pane and the Full Keyboard Access tab. Check the box that says "Turn on full keyboard access" and choose between control and function keys, letters, or custom-defined letters.

Once enabled, you can access the menu bar and dock solely with the keyboard. Use the arrow keys after activating the menu bar or dock to navigate, and use ENTER to select items. Use the up arrow in the dock to display and select the pop-up menus.

Full keyboard access works great in Cocoa and Carbon applications, but not at all in Classic (as you might expect).
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Install the ScriptMenu menubar widget System
If you haven't visited Apple's AppleScript for OS X pages yet, you're missing some good stuff. For example, there's a page of toolbar scripts that can make a number of scripts accessible in the Finder.

But the real gem is the Script Menu menubar widget. As you can see in the screenshot, this menubar widget gives you system-wide access to the scripts stored in /Library/Scripts. In addition, you can easily add other scripts to the collection simply by dropping them into your user's Library/Scripts folder.

Even if you're not an AppleScript fanatic, this widget is worth a look. For example, try "Info Scripts -> Font Sampler" for a cool demo of AppleScript's power.
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