There is finally a way to cut and paste files and merge folders in Snow Leopard. A new (shareware) Mac menu bar application, called moveAddict, provides this function, so you can use Cmd+X and Cmd+V in the Finder.
If you are experiencing a condition where the Console freezes when launched, and/or Terminal is very sluggish when starting up, it may be due to an accumulation of log files.
This blog post by Shannon Hicks shows how the problem was traced to a glut of hundreds of log files in /private/var/log/asl. [crarko adds: I just looked at my Mac, and there are only about 25 files in mine. That seems to be OK.]
If you don't need to keep these logs for some other reason, they can be deleted using the Terminal command:
sudo rm -f /private/var/log/asl/*
[crarko adds: I haven't tested this one. If you don't have the issues described, it's best just to leave the log files alone. See the comments below for more information about the log rotation process.]
Are you used to hiding windows instead of minimizing them because Command+Tab switching to an application does not bring up the document window?
When searching for a solution to this the only things that came up were applications like LiteSwitch and Witch. A bit of the functionality is also available in the built-in application switcher, but it's well hidden.
When you are cycling applications with Command+Tab, find the application you want to activate and press Option, then release the Command key and the window will un-minimize. Maybe there's a way for this to become default behavior by doing a defaults write command in Terminal, but I don't know how.
[crarko adds: I tested this, and it works as described. It seemed to only open the most recently minimized window if there were several. There is an earlier hint about modifier keys, but it doesn't mention this function.]
Fast User Switching has a lot of benefits, but one of its downsides is that it is easy to end up with multiple users in the background wasting system resources and needlessly degrading performance. This hint shows how to implement a system to log out users automatically if they have been sent to the background for a specified period of time.
In order to keep the benefits of Fast User Switching while avoiding the situation where multiple users remain logged in unnecessarily, it is necessary to have a way to cause users to log out automatically after being in the background for a period of time. Unfortunately, Mac OS X does not provide a way to do this. (There is a setting in the Security preference pane for logging out automatically after a certain amount of idle time, but it logs out all users and only does so when no one uses the computer for the specified period of time; so long as anyone is using the computer, all background users stay logged in.)
[crarko adds: OK, there are some serious questions raised about the procedure described below. I suggest waiting for further corroboration before trusting it.]
Here is some background on the recent announcement about a piece of malware which has been found to affect Macs. The spyware in question is called OSX/OpinionSpy and it’s a new variant of Windows spyware that has existed since 2008.
This link (to The Guardian) offers a manual method to remove the spyware which was installed with the screen savers from 7art, or other infected applications which may have been installed.
To see if you're affected, run Activity Monitor (in /Applications/Utilities) and set it to show All Processes in the dropdown menu. Look for a process called 'PremierOpinion' which will be owned by root. If it's there, you've been affected.
To summarize the removal procedure:
Go to the /Applications folder in the Finder.
Find the PremierOpinion folder.
[crarko adds:Possible dangerous step removed.]
Move the PremierOpinion folder to the Trash and empty the Trash; if won't delete, choose 'Empty Trash' while holding the Option key. You may need an administrator password. Reboot the Mac after doing this.
Check again in Activity Monitor to be sure the process 'PremierOpinion' is no longer there.
The submitter expresses thanks to Paul Mortgaat on the X4U mailing list for pointing out this tip.
[crarko adds: Thankfully, I haven't tested this one. I've removed one step in this procedure until it can be verified as not making the problem worse. And take a look at the procedure mentioned in this comment as a more comprehensive operation.]
I was looking for a way to change the creation date of a file and I found this hint, and through that, the ChangeFileDates command line tool at hamsoftengineering.com. I noticed that ChangeFileDates will accept some pretty vague relative dates as valid inputs!
Some '.mdimporter' files in the Spotlight folder may cause problems.
There is another reason Spotlight may hang - if you are a musician and have Finale 2010 installed, the file 'Finale.mdimporter' causes endless Crash Reporter entries in Console, and the indexing will either show a completion time of several days, or simply not ever finish. Removing this file and restarting Spotlight (using a utility or CLI command, or just restarting) fixes the problem. The file is found in /Library/Spotlight (note this is the root level Library, not the one inside System or Users folder).
There are several other '.mdimporter' files in that folder, to evidently assist Spotlight, and I have not had a problem with any except this one from MakeMusic.
You can search your computer using Spotlight using search options like other search engines.
Not sure how long spotlight has been this way, but I found it very helpful when searching. You can enter a search query just like you would on Google, use a dash or minus in front of word(s) that you don't want to see in the results.
Example: apple store receipt -itunes kind:pdf
Would find all PDF documents that don't contain iTunes info and that were an Apple Store receipt that are on your computer.
Example: happy kind:mp3
Would find all MP3 files on your computer with the word happy in the file name or meta tags.
Example: happy kind:mp3 -"and you know it"
Finds all MP3 files on your computer like above but omits the kids song if "your happy and you know it clap your hands" while returning all other results like above.
[crarko adds: I tested this, and it works as described. There is an earlier hint describing other tips for customizing Spotlight searches using Terminal.]
In my daily workflow, I often use AppleScript. Sometimes I need to use symbols in, say, TextEdit. Usually, you would open the Character Palette. But I found an interesting way to use AppleScript's power to insert Unicode characters using the «data» format in AppleScript.
This tip might be handy if Spotlight seems to take forever to re-index. I re-indexed Spotlight, and it started showing the spinning wheel. I was unable to pinpoint an obvious reason for this.
Some weeks later I decided to get rid of most of the DYLD errors from the Console log. As a step in doing I booted the machine into safe mode, and cleaned all the system caches. After having done that Spotlight started working as it should again, reading the indices when performing searches.
[crarko adds: I tested this, and it works as described. I posted it as much as anything as a reminder that clearing the system caches should be a part of any regular maintenance plan, and often an early step in a troubleshooting procedure.]