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Available memory and printing problems System
Symptom: Print Center says your document is printing, but nothing is happening.

If you have a printer supported by X that prints sometimes but not at others, it may be that you have too many applications open, thus preventing Print Center from getting the RAM it needs. I've discovered that X (any build) doesn't provide an error message saying "there is not enough memory for this task" (or some such).

Like many others, I've gotten in the habit of leaving my frequently-used apps open all the time, and with 617 Mgs of RAM, I thought I had plenty of memory to spare.

But on trying to print some docs, the Print Center would open and say the doc was printing (no error message) when in fact nothing was happening. When I tested with a one-word doc ("testing") it would print fine.

I quit several other apps, and now my more complicated doc printed just fine.

So if suddenly your printer is unresponsive, try again with fewer applications open in the background!

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10.0.4 update released System
Check your Software Update panel - it's out there! This is from the Read Me:

"The 10.0.4 Update delivers a significant number of improvements for USB devices including additional external device support for iTunes CD burning, improved battery life for many PowerBook G3 systems, and Classic compatibility improvements. This update also provides the latest security updates to OpenSSH and 'sudo' services and includes support for Apple's newest digital flat-panel, the 17-inch Apple Studio Display."

The list of modified files is way too long to post here -- you can see it yourself by doing this from the terminal:
[prompt] cd /Library/Receipts/10.0.4Update.pkg/Contents/Resources
[prompt] lsbom
Don't type the [prompt], that's just my representation of your command-line prompt. This will show you all the updated files installed by the updater.

NOTE: Apple has released (for the first time!) update notes which detail exactly what was changed, in easy-to-understand language. Give them a read-through to see everything that was updated (and why!).
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Install X on older Macs System
Back in the OS X Public Beta days, Ryan Rempel created a hack to get OS X installed on older machines. Now, thanks to Other World Computing, he's been able to create an installer that handles a number of the older machines with the release version of OS X. Read all about it (and download the installer) on Other World Computing's OS X for Legacy Macs page.
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Move the Users folder to a new partition System
[Editor's note: There's a previously published tip on moving the Users' folder - but I felt this alternate method merited posting on its own. Check both tips if you're interested in moving your Users directory to a new drive or partition.]

I have three partitions on my dual G4. One for OS 9.1, one for OS X, and one I wanted to use as some file repository. However, OS X does not allow guest-sharing of files outside of the Public folder. So, I decided to try and have MacOS X recognize the other partition as the Users directory. This is what I did:

- su-ed to root
- gnutar cf users.tar Users/
- mv users.tar /Volumes/TargetDisk/
- cd /Volumes/TargetDisk/
- gnutar xf users.tar
- rename original Users folder to Users-old
- cd /
- ln -s /Volumes/TargetDisk/Users Users

Now a symbolic link exists where the original Users folders resided. Then, you have to log out and log back in again. After re-logging, you should see that the system recognizes the Users folder on the other partition as the one with your home directory.

The only problem I had, was that some aliases may not work anymore. For example, I have an alias to the Favorites.html in OS9.1 in my Explorer preferences. That one, I had to reestablish. Apart from this, it works smoothly.
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Quickly access sound preferences System
[Editor's note: This tip was submitted last weekend by Argano]

Try pressing the key combo option+mute - this opens the system prefs directly to your sound window pane. Seems to work in both classic and carbon apps

I'm running 10.0.3 build 4P13

Hopes this helps someone out.

[On my machine (G4/733), this brought the System Prefs app to the foreground, but didn't display the window (quite odd!). And repeatedly pressing option-mute caused my machine to go into slow-motion mode and pegged the CPU meter at 100% utilization. Not sure what happened, but everything was fine after I restarted. Not sure if that's specific to my machine or not, so try this trick at your own risk. -rob.]
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Aliases to remote volumes fail in docked folders System
I create a Dock Items folder in my Library folder. Within that folder, I create several folders each containing apps I want to frequently launch but don't want them all in the dock. I drag these folders to the dock and this way I've got the same type of thing as an Apple menu.

But I've noticed that any alias I created to anything on a network volume doesn't work properly when navigating from the dock. Normally when I double click the alias in the Finder, it asks me to connect to the volume that the original item exists on. If I browse to the alias in the dock and select it. Nothing happens. Bummer. It would be nice if the opening docked items were the same as opening the same items in the finder.
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Updated Developer Tools released System
Apple has released a new Developer Tools package, with improved Java support and other improvements. You can download it for free if your a registered Apple Developer (there's a free online-only developer level available). You can download the whole thing (nearly 200mb), or just the bits and pieces you're interested in.

You need to start at Apple's Developer Connection Member Site, login (register if you aren't already), and the hit the Download link to see the new Dev Tools packages.
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A detailed look at memory usage in OS X System
I collected the following illuminative posts from Barry Sharp on system memory management from the Apple discussion boards.

- Dennis Hill

[Editor's note: Dennis suggested I cut this down to a concise summary, but I thought I'd just publish them as they were written by Barry; he obviously has a great deal of knowledge about Mac OS X! These emails were originally sent by Barry to Ted Landau at MacFixIt, and then were posted to the discussion group where Dennis found them. So if you'd like to learn a lot more about OS X's usage of memory, read the rest of this article. It's a bit long, and can get technical at times, but I found it very interesting.]
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Easy and complete folder backups System
"hellmachine" posted a one-line terminal command in this MacNN forum which will copy a given directory, including all hidden files and resource forks, to a backup location:
sudo ditto -vR -rsrcFork /Users /Volumes/Backups/Users
This example would back up the Users directory to a volume named "Backups". The -rsrcFork option will handle the resource fork of the files during the copy.

I have not tested this myself, and I cannot find any documentation ("man ditto") on the -rsrcFork option. Use at your own risk, but it doesn't look too threatening, as ditto is a copy command.
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Empty a non-emptiable trash can System
I tried everything I knew, or could find via Help, to get permission (booted in OS 10.0.3) to empty my trash, without success, including reinstalling OS X. I noticed something peculiar (after much trial and error): when first booting under 10.0.3, the Trash icon would show as empty, but as soon as it was clicked on, it appeared full.

Here's how I got things back to normal: while booted under X, I opened the trash (successfully), then double-clicked on the "Desktop (System 9)" folder and created a new folder. I then Selected All files in the OS X trash and dragged them to this new OS 9 folder.

The move was successful, and since then the OS X trash has behaved normally. The next time I booted under OS 9, I dragged the new folder (filled with OS X trash) to 9's Trash and successfully emptied it (using Option/Empty Trash, as some files were locked). I regained the appropriate amount of disk space, and the problem has not recurred as of this posting.

I don't know, but suspect, what happened: I think I must have put some files that originated under OS 9 into the OS X trash.
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