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Hide any program's dock icon Desktop
Thanks to the recent version of Launch Bar (IMHO the finest App Switcher+ I've ever had the pleasure to use), their instructions for hiding the icon in the Dock appears to work for any application:
In order to get rid of the dock icon, you must modify the file named 'Info.plist' inside the Application's package (i.e. Open this file in your favorite text editor and add the following section (if it's already present simply change the 0 to a 1 in the string tag:
NOTE: I substituted the standard square brackets for the purposes of posting here; you must substitute the angle brackets when editing. So far I've hidden my Sherlock and System Preferences icons. With the System Prefs you will have to write-enable the 'Info.plist' file by changing the permissions in a Terminal window:
sudo chmod 464 /Applications/System

Panther broken!
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Restore your dock pinning and orientation Apps
If you have enabled your dock to be moved to corners and sides (see Move and corner your dock), one of the small annoyances is that the pinning and orientation revert to bottom middle after a logout or restart.

I noticed this morning that Frank Vercruesse has released DockLock 1.0, which exists solely to restore your preferred dock pinning and orientation settings automatically.

Until Apple decides whether to officially support pinning and orientation, this seems like the best solution for those that prefer their dock in positions other than bottom middle. I tested it, and it does exactly what it claims to do.
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Partial control of apps in the background Desktop
I just noticed that it is not only possible to move background windows by pressing the Command (Apple) key and move it with the mouse, but you also can partially control them. For instance, it is possible to disconnect your dial-up internet connection without bringing the InternetConnect app to the foreground, by command clicking the disconnect button.

I don't really know the use for this, but thought I share it anyway...I also noticed that it doesn't work in all apps, it seems to work only in Cocoa apps

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Install the latest Analog web tracking program UNIX
[Editor: If you run a webserver on your OS X box, you might want to take a look at Analog, one of the better and more widely used weblog analyzers. Read the rest of this article if you'd like the detailed step-by-step instructions needed to get it running on OS X. You'll need to have the developer tools installed, and should be comfortable working in the terminal window before you try this install (it's not overly complicated, but it does involve editing and compiling UNIX source files).

Thanks to Commet for contributing this how-to. -rob.]
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Move items from one drive to another Desktop
Most everyone knows that if you option-drag an object in the Finder, you'll make a copy of it. And if you command-option drag an object, you'll create an alias. Both of those actions work the same way in OS 9 as they do in OS X.

However, in OS 9, there's no easy way to move an item from one volume to another. You first copy it, then remove it from the source. In OS X, however, if you hold down the command key while dragging from one drive to the other, you'll actually move the object in question. The progress bar (if it shows up - move something BIG) actually says "Moving" instead of "Copying", even though the window title still says "Copying".

Thanks to 'dcipjr' on the MacWorld Operating Systems forum for discovering this very cool tip!
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Scott Adams' Adventures Apps
Another trip down nostalagia lane! If you enjoyed the article on playing Zork on OS X, you may also be interested in playing the Scott Adams' Adventures on your OS X box.

These were text-based adventure games written for a number of early computing platforms, including the Apple ][. You can read more about Scott Adams and his adventures on his home page. As I recall, there were about a dozen or so, all using the same basic two-word parser and featuring some good puzzles.

Over on the MacFixit boards, CapVideo has posted an explanation on how to run Scott's adventure programs under Mac OS X. If you're interested, check out the Scott Adams' Adventures thread for the details. You'll need the Developer Tools installed, and should be relatively comfortable with the command line.

I wasted a number of hours on Scott's adventures in my Apple ][ days; I can't wait to try these out this weekend!
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LaCie USB floppy drive support in OS X System
I bought a LaCie USB Floppy along with my G4/450 DP, and of course the fact that OS X dosn't support it is rather frustrating. Even more so that LaCie offered no support on this drive whatsoever! The drive is not manufactured by LaCie at all, it's made by Y-E Data, a company in Japan;

They call it "USB Floppy Disk Drive FlashBuster-U" and "USB FDD SNAP-ON Color Cover Model". There are two other variants; one made for the early iMacs, and one for Windows. Just now, I received a mail from Y-E Data:
Apple will support USB FDD on Mac OS X with built-in driver. But current version of Apple's Mac OS X driver has problem with mount and un-mount operation. Please wait. Apple will fix this problem on future update.

If you want force to take USB Floppy on current version:
  1. Do not install driver from driver CD-ROM. USB floppy drive work with Built-in Driver of Mac OS X.
  2. Insert Floppy Disk to USB Floppy before connecting USB Cable.
  3. Connect USB Cable to your Mac.
  4. Floppy will mount on your Mac.
But, you could not un-mount and change floppy disk.

Apple release Mac OS update 10.0.4, we already test it but, it has still problem. Please wait Apple's next update.

Yoshi Sasaya Y-E DATA INC.
It's not a perfect solution, but it does help a bit. Thanx to Mr. Sasaya for his help! ;-)

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Use the clipboard in the terminal UNIX
Over on the MacNN forums, "kvm_mkdb" posted a couple of useful commands regarding the Mac OS clipboard. If you're in the terminal, and want the output of a command on the clipboard, you can easily get it. For example, to dump a detailed directory list to the clipboard, just type:
ls -al | pbcopy #
You can then paste the contents of the clipboard using pbpaste:
pbpaste > somefile #
This would send the clipboard contents into "somefile". Of course, that's not a great example, as you could have just sent the directory list to the file in the first place (ls -al > somefile). However, it's more useful if you want to paste into a GUI-based application such as Word or BBedit. No more mouse selection required; simply use pbcopy, switch to the GUI app, and hit command-V.

I can't find a 'man' page or help file for either of these commands - anyone know if there are more options available?
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Uptime stats in OS X? System
I am curious how long people have been able to keep their OS X systems up and running without a reboot for any reason. If you are not sure how to check this go to the terminal and type
It will then return something like:
6:00PM up 8 days, 15:04, 1 user, load averages: 1.24, 1.37, 1.45
The bit that says up 8 days 15 hours is what I am interested in. Reasons for rebooting would also be of use. For example I have found that over time my idle process time goes down so drastically that I must periodically reboot to improve overall system responsiveness and stability. But I also tend to get a kernel panic every 5-8 days as well. Others may find that they have to reboot into OS 9.x to use some app. 8.5 days is the longest I have been able to remain up thus far. I look forward to hearing about this...

[Editor's note: Seems like a reasonably interesting topic, given the relative lack of OS X news lately! Chime in ... my current uptime is 2 days, 23:15. Last reboot was due to a need to burn an iDVD.]
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Shell script for copying files and resource forks UNIX
Lots of people have been complaining or commenting on how there is no way to use the 'tar' command to backup, share, archive, copy, etc. files on the Mac that have resources and desktop information. Well after a few days of trial and error I have found a way.

I call it "tarw" - The tar Wrapper.

tarw is essentailly a perl script that uses the tar command to archive files individually. This allows you to archive resource forks, desktop files any data that you can get your hands on essentially. The current version simply ads support for resource forks and desktop information like creator, type and attributes. In the future who knows what is possible.

I have placed a gzipped file "tarw.tgz" on my iDisk you are free to download at:

To use the program, simply download and extract it. There is a readme file included with it.
Please provide feedback to this posting or if you like e-mail me I would love to hear what people have to say about it.

Good Luck and long live the Mac.

[Editor's note: I haven't tried this myself yet, but it sounds like a handy command-line utility!]
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