Frequently, the classic environment monopolizes the system. This makes the whole OS feel sluggish, because the the Window manager is trying to tear through all its code while sharing a huge number of resources with Classic. This happens on a lot of Unix platforms, and Windows as well. Unlike Windows, Unix and OS X provide a fine-grained way of alleviating this problem. It is called "renice". This command line tool wll allow you to finely control the priority of every program running on your system, including Classic. Typing "man renice" at the command line can give you detail descriptions of this tool, but I'll walk you through the basics (read the rest for the details...)
If you're running a spellcheck-aware application (such as mail), then you know misspelled words show up in red. Sometimes, though, the word is right, it's just not in the dictionary. "Dalgo" pointed out over on this MacNN forum that you can add any misspelled words to the dictionary by simply control-clicking (or right-clicking) on the word. You'll be given a menu with options to Learn spelling or Ignore spelling (among other choices). In all my mucking about with the beta, I'd never tried a right-click on a misspelled word! Thanks Dalgo!
Most screensavers feature a "fade now" corner which will instantly activate the scrensaver module. The built-in OS X screensaver does not inclue this useful feature. There is, however, a pretty good shortcut way of accomplishing the same thing. Here's how to do it.
In the finder (not in a terminal session), navigate to:
There have been some reports of people with totally dead Macs after running OS X. The causes seem very hard to pin down, but the common condition of the machines is an inability to boot off of a OS 9 CD. The machine is stuck running OS X, despite everything the user tries to fix the problem (including booting into open firmware, resetting parameter RAM, setting the system disk, etc.).
One final thing to try is turn the machine off, open it up, and pull the battery out of the motherboard. Wait a decent amount of time (five minutes or more), reinsert the battery, and restart. This should force your machine to forget about anything it thinks it knows, and go back to the factory configuration. Your CD drive should now boot the machine (when holding down 'C' during boot). I've seen reports of this working for more than one person, but there have been a couple poor souls that have tried this and are still non-functional.
Any other thoughts on potential solutions for those still stuck?
Spotted this one over in this MacNN forum. If you want to move a window (call it Window2) which is behind the foreground window (Window1) without bringing it to the foreground, there are a few options, depending on the applications involved. For example:
If Window1 and Window2 belong to the same Carbon app (IE 5), use command-drag
If Window1 and Window2 belong to the same Cocoa app (RBrowser), use command-drag
If Window1 belongs to a Carbon app and Window2 belongs to a Cocoa app, use command-drag
if Window1 belongs to a Cocoa app and Window2 belongs to a Carbon app, drag with the right mouse button. What's strange is that control-drag will not work, even though a right mouse button is supposed to be a control-click. Strange.
If Window1 or Window2 belongs to a Classic app, there does not appear to be a way to do this - any click combination brings the Classic window forward.
These tricks are quite useful for managing your desktop real estate; use them wisely and you'll do a lot less application switching!
If you've enabled Apache to serve web pages, and want to see what's been going on with your site (hits, visitor sources, etc.), then you need a web log analyzer. Analog is considered one of the best, and it's free. There are two versions available for the Mac that I'm aware of. The first is a PowerPC app that would (probably, I haven't tested it) run in the Classic environment. You can find the package on this page at summary.net.
There's also a UNIX version available, which Chris Pepper has compiled for the Public Beta. You can find the download and instructions on his site. He's also ported a couple other UNIX apps over to the PB, and you can find those on the mosxsw.com web site.
Although I don't use the built-in mail client every day, I do like how well it integrates into the system. For example, the new message count in the dock is a very nifty feature. However, as installed, the mail client (for some unknown reason - bug?) will not allow you to search for text within the messages.
In order to make this feature work, go into the preferences (Mail -> Preferences) and select the Indexing option. Click on the Enable full-text searches in mailboxes checkbox, and make sure the When opening mailboxes dropdown menu reads Always create an index.
You can now search for text within messages. There are some other features (such as filters) that are hidden in the preferences as well, so browse around while you're there!
[Editor's note: See the comments for a discussion on recommendations]
I downloaded the .tar file containing the PHP documentation, and was just beginning to read the files when I came across this problem: long file names. It would seem that OS X Public Beta chokes on very long file names such as
The problem first came up as an inability for me to view certain pages in the PHP manual. I first though it was a bug in IE.
But then I then looked into the directory using the Finder, and discovered that while files with shorter names are recognized by the Finder as HTML files (due to their .html extension?), longer ones like the one I mentioned as well as many others, are not recognized. I though OS X is supposed to supported long file names, up to 255 characters?!?!?
If anyone can shed some light on this, I'd appreciated it. Thanks!
If you are an IRC user, and you notice that your identd function only seems to work when you're logged in as root, head on over to this thread on the MacFixIt forums for a quick edit fix to make it functional again.
I've also noted the how-to in the body of this article just for posterity, but please, support all the Mac sites by reading the original over on MacFixIt!