Some users have noted that access to the preference panels from both the menu bar (under the Display menubar icon) and the Apple menu (Dock -> Dock Preferences) is broken in 10.1. Instead of opening the specific preference panel, they actually do nothing. The same thing may occur in other programs that open system preference panels.
It appears this is caused by the actual preference panels losing their association with the System Preferences application. Although I haven't seen a cause listed anywhere, the cure is relatively easy. Thanks to some anonymous poster on one of the various OS X boards, here's what you need to do to repair them:
In the Finder, navigate to the /System/Library/PreferencePanes folder on your OS X hard drive.
Select any one of the panes and do File -> Show Info (command-I). Then pick the "Open with application" drop down item. If you're having this problem, it will probably read "Not Applicable" as the application to use. This is what we'll fix.
Click on the icon next to Not Applicable and select "Other...". When the file dialog comes up, change "Recommended Applications" to "All Applications". Scroll down and select System Preferences and hit the "Add" button.
You will get a warning box stating "You don't have privileges to change the application for this document only." It goes on to explain that if you make this change, it will affect all documents with the "prefPane" extension. This is exactly what we want to do, so hit "Continue".
That should do it; your preference panels should now be usable from the menubar and Apple menu. I have not experienced this glitch, but the fix has been tested and verified by a number of people already.
In the thread The inseperable duo on the Macworld forums, aRichboy noticed some odd behavior in Cocoa apps. Namely, he was unable to edit certain character sets in some text input boxes. These character sets are known as ligatures.
So what's a ligature? Ligatures are two or more letters that run together in typesetting. Some common ligatures include ff, fl, ffi, tt, and ae. Apple has this to say about ligatures in its Cocoa developer docs:
"Text and Font Support: When you add the necessary objects to your user interface in Interface Builder, your application automatically gains many capabilities related to text editing:menu selection of font families, sizes, and styles and textual attributes such as alignment, kerning and ligatures;..."
What this means in every day use is that you may find yourself occasionally unable to edit a character you've just typed in. In testing last night, it appears to only affect the "fi" and "fl" ligatures. To see this 'feature' in action, open mail.app and start a new email. Type an email address like "email@example.com" in the "To" field. Wait a second or so with the cursor at the end of this string, then hit the back arrow (not the delete key!). The cursor will jump over the "fl" pair, not allowing you to insert anything between them.
This behavior is only exhibited with proportional fonts; monospace fonts in the body of a plain-text email, for example, are not affected.
Not really a bug, but a feature that might surprise you if you're not aware of it. Thanks to aRichboy for pointing it out.
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.]
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).
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.
Thanks to this thread on the ArsTechnica boards, one of my nagging criticisms of OS X can now be addressed. If, like me, you prefer a mouse that moves at warp speed, you can hack the speed in both 10.0.4 and 10.1.
Using a terminal, edit the .GlobalPreferences.plist file in your ~/Library/Preferences directory. If you're using Pico, for example, type:
Once the editor opens, use control-W to search for "scaling". You'll see a couple lines that look like:
Note that I've used square brackets instead of angle brackets, due to parsing issues with HTML. Change the number in the "[real]" line to a higher value. 1.7 is the maximum you get through the control panel; I'm using 3.2 now and like it on my 1600x1200 screen. Values over 10 may not work; I tried "15" and it became "1.5". Save your changes (control-O in Pico) and then quit the editor (control-X).
I'd actually tried this months ago, but the mouse didn't seem to change speeds at all. As the thread points out, the key to making it take effect is to simply (argh!) logout and login again. You should now have a turbocharged mouse. Note that if you use the Mouse preferences panel and change the speed slider at all, you'll (obviously) lose your hand-edited value and have to repeat this process to speed up your mouse.
i got 10.1 on Saturday from Comp USA, and came home to install it over my 10.0.4 install. it took forever, but seemed to work ok. I logged into my existing account, and opened the System Prefs to change the monitor settings to 1600x1200, which is the resolution i prefer. i guess i accidentally selected 1600x1200 @85Hz, because it kicked me into the monitor's "Out of Scan Range" screen. In earlier versions of the Mac OS, holding down the mouse button would bring back the previous setting. not so in OS X.
i could no longer use OS X, because it kept booting the computer up in an invalid range and i couldn't see the OS to change the resolution. The mac has handled this kind of thing far more elegantly than Windows for at least a decade - to revert to this kind of unintuitive behavior is just inexcusable.
in any case, i could not do a thing to make this work. zapping the PRAM no longer resets the monitor values to a default like 640x480, and disconnecting the monitor, shutting down, booting, shutting down, plugging in the monitor and booting didn't do it either. After asking around on another BBS, i was able to get the system back. deleting the file:
while in 9.2 and rebooting into X worked fine. It inherited the settings from 9.2, and i'm now working from 10.1 again.
December 20 2001 Update: An alternative method of solving this problem is to restart with the shift key down during a reboot - this seems to now indicate to OS X "reset the monitor at startup" instead of "disable extensions". This solution courtesy of this thread on the MacNN forums.
OS 10.1 adds an option in the General prefs to have double-scroll arrows at the bottom of the scroll bar. Scott R. wrote in with a quick preferences hack to enable double-scroll arrows at BOTH ends of the scroll bars. If you'd like to enable this feature, simply start a terminal session and type:
defaults write "Apple Global Domain" AppleScrollBarVariant DoubleBoth
You then need to logout and login (or, perhaps, simply force quit the Finder) to see the effect ... but once you've done so, you should have double-scroll arrows at both ends of your scroll bars.
I'm not sure which combination of applications (Cocoa, Carbon, Java) this applies to, but it works for certain in the Finder and a couple of Carbon applications I quickly tested. To return to the normal mode, use:
defaults write "Apple Global Domain" AppleScrollBarVariant Single
(or you could just open the General pane in the System Prefs and check "At top and bottom") or
defaults write "Apple Global Domain" AppleScrollBarVariant DoubleMax
to put them together only at the bottom (again, this is equivalent to clicking "Together" in the General prefs panel for scroll arrows).
Use shift-command-3 (entire screen) and shift-command-4 (region) to take screenshots in OS X 10.1. The images are dropped on your desktop, saved in TIFF format, and they'll open in Preview when double-clicked.
SnapzProX offers more features for file formats, movie captures, and menu captures if you need those capabilities (and I do and I love the program ;-) -- but it's great to see the return of the easy-to-use built-in commands from Apple.