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Repair a broken Safari RSS Database3 file Web Browsers
Today, I had a process running amok and filling up my boot volume. This was bad, as Safari seems to have tried to update my RSS feeds and failed in the process, leaving a Database3_BROKEN file in my user's Library/Syndication folder. This was especially annoying as I have a backlog of hundreds of unread articles. On several sites, this amounts to more articles having been accumulated than entries in their respective RSS feeds. It would have required a lot of work to check all the sites I have subscribed to manually. So I set out to find a solution that did not involve trashing my old Syndication database.

This command worked for me on 10.4 (in Terminal):
sqlite3 ~/Library/Syndication/Database3_BROKEN .dump | sqlite3 ~/Library/Syndication/Database3-repaired
On 10.5, something like this should work:
sqlite3 ~/Library/Syndication/Damaged\ Database .dump | sqlite3 ~/Library/Syndication/Database3-repaired
If the command above works without errors, the Database3-repaired file is probably OK and you can rename it to Database3. The best thing about this is that it may serve you in many other similar cases on Mac OS X, as SQLite is very widely used. Thus a more general version of the command:
sqlite3 broken.db .dump | sqlite3 repaired.db
A word of caution though: check the repaired database carefully before relying on it. According to the somewhat unrelated discussion that led to this solution, this may not work for a database if the application using it died in the middle of a commit. This can result in both records and index being broken. In any case, this should be worth a try.
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Where to find Flash Player 9 for older versions of OS X Web Browsers
Over on our forums, user shawbeg writes:
A couple of sites I use are asking for an upgrade to Flash Player 9.0.115 to run certain apps (Snapfish & Facebook, for example). I'm running OS X 10.3.9 which is not compatible with Flash Player 10. Can I still get Flash Player 9.0.115? I've got 9.0.47 now. Not finding what I want digging around on the Adobe site.
As it turns out, it is available, but apparently not on the Adobe site. User macosnoob found it on -- caution, this is a 134MB download link: Adobe Flash Player 9.0.115. If you're running an older Mac and need the last version of Flash Player 9, the above link should get the job done.
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Download 720p high definition videos from YouTube Web Browsers
YouTube just added a new quality level, in addition to normal quality and high quality: 720p high definition! As such, I've modified another bookmarklet previously posted as a hint here so that it now downloads these 720p HD versions in H.264 QuickTime .mp4 glory, ready for use with iTunes, Apple TV, with no transcoding required.

To use it, just drag the bookmarklet from this page to your Bookmarks bar, then click it while viewing a YouTube 720p HD video.

[robg adds: For those interested, here's the source code of the bookmarklet:
When clicked, the bookmarklet will place a new download link into the gray box on the right-hand side of the YouTube page. Depending on your browser, you can Control-click the link and save the target of the link. In Firefox, I just Option-clicked the link, and it worked. I did have to rename the downloaded file, as it was originally named get_video.htm. After renaming with an mp4 extension, the video played perfectly. (I used this video for testing.)]
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Create a Mac-friendly Firefox window resize bookmark Web Browsers
It has always bothered me that hitting the green "maximize" button in Firefox makes the window take up the entire screen, instead of just maximizing it vertically. However, by reading this how-to and combining it with this javascript from the Mozilla documentation, I found a work-around:
  1. Open the Bookmarks manager.
  2. Create a new bookmark on your bookmarks bar with the Name set to resize and the Location set to this string:
There you go -- you're done! The bookmark should be in your bookmarks bar, so you can just click on the bookmark and it will resize your window to its maximum vertical size.
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Complete Firefox forms using Address Book data Web Browsers
Safari has long had the ability to pull data from the OS X Address Book, and use only that information to fill in forms. I just submitted an extension to Mozilla that does the same for Firefox: Form Filler. (As new extensions are considered by to be experimental, you'll have to log in to the Firefox extensions site in order to install it.)

There are a few differences from the way this works in Safari. This extension can find U.S. states and Canadian provinces that are in pull-down lists, and it's triggered by a toolbar button, rather than doing word-completion in the form. Control-click on the toolbar and choose Customize from the drop-down menu, then drag the AddressBook->Forms button to the toolbar. (If anyone knows how the extension can do this on its own during the installation process or during its first run, please let me know.)

For those who are curious, the Address Book access is handled by the contacts Command-line Address Book tool that lets you view and search your contacts in Terminal. Please note this is an early release of the extension, and should be considered experimental; feedback is welcomed.

[robg adds: I've been using this extension for a few days, and it works quite well for basic form handling. For more complex needs, I rely on Autofill Forms, which offers support for multiple profiles, keyboard shortcuts to fill in form data, and more.]
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Create arbitrary keyboard shortcuts for bookmarklets Web Browsers
One of the things that makes Delicious (formerly so useful it that it can integrate, to varying degrees, with all broswers via its JavaScript bookmarklets. Many other sites also use these -- for example, I have bookmarklets for Digg, FaceBook, and more. Wouldn't it be nice to be able to activate these from a keyboard shortcut? You can!
  1. Add a bookmarklet to your Bookmarks menu, not to your favorites bar.
  2. In System Preferences, go to the Keyboard Shortcuts tab of the Keyboard & Mouse System Preferences panel, and add a keyboard shortcut with the exact name of your bookmarklet. You can specify the application as either your chosen browser, or for All Applications if you use multiple browsers. If you choose All Applications, just make sure the bookmarklet has the same name in all browsers.
Now I can post to Delicious by pressing the same keyboard shortcut everywhere. Yay!

[robg adds: This works, of course, and can be extended to create keyboard shortcuts for any site in your Bookmarks menu, not just bookmarklets. It was mentioned in a footnote to this older hint, which covered a possibly quicker (but definitely not GUI-based) method of creating keyboard shortcuts in Safari (and any other program).]
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Call the URL shortener for the current site Web Browsers
I use as my URL shortening service, mainly because I like the way that it links to Twitter and tracks statistics on shortened URLs that I send folks. I am, however, lazy and I don't like to do any more clicking, copying, or pasting than I have to.

So I created a bookmark on my bookmarks bar in Safari which opens in a new window and passes the current page I am on as a parameter. The net effect is that most of the work is done for me when the window opens. The JavaScript bookmark is:''+location.href);
This approach will probably work with other shorteners as well, and the above shortcut should work in any browser.
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Download links from external sources in Safari Web Browsers
It should be well-known that you can option-click a link in Safari to force it to download. This is very helpful for image, PDF, and text file links which would otherwise display in Safari. What about when you get a link in an email or other document? Option-click in Mail doesn't download it; it just loads it in your default browser as if normally clicked.

Try this instead. Select the link in Mail and copy it. In Mail, just Control-click and select Copy Link from the menu. In a text-based apps, you'll have to select the whole link and copy it, unless it provides a similar link discovery feature. Open a new window in Safari and paste the link into the address box, then oress Option-Return instead of a plain Return. Safari will behave like you Option-clicked the URL. I'm sure this could be automated somehow, but I'm too lazy to figure that stuff out!

[robg adds: As noted in this earlier hint, another (possibly simpler) option is to paste the link directly into Safari's Downloads window.]
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Clear all favicons from Firefox 3 Web Browsers
If you want to clear all favicons from your bookmarks in Firefox 3, edit the places.sqlite database, which can be found in your profile folder, located in your user's Library » Application Support » Firefox » Profiles » random_text.default folder. You then need to use any SQLite editor to execute these two commands on that file:
delete all from moz_favicons
update moz_places set favicon_id = NULL
Quit the editor and restart Firefox, and the favicons will be gone (this works on every platform). Also, if you want to permanently disable favicons, type about:config in the URL bar, and edit these two properties:
  • -- set to false
  • -- set to false
[robg adds: You can use the built-in sqlite3 program in Terminal to edit this file. Just cd into the profile folder, then (with Firefox not running) type sqlite3 places.sqlite. I had to change the format of the first command, however, to make it work in sqlite3 -- I had to remove all, leaving just delete from moz_favicons. After running both commands, type .quit and restart Firefox. This seemed to work for me as described in the hint.]
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Inquisitor for Safari needs Yahoo for full functionality Web Browsers
This may be obvious, but now that Inquisitor has been bought by Yahoo, the instant display of web sites matching your search terms only works if Yahoo is set as the preferred Search Engine in the Inquisitor (Search) Preferences in Safari. It's set this way by default (so Inquisitor works out of the box), but if you prefer to use Google for your searches, you'll lose the main benefit of installing Inquisitor.
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