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10.5: Create a custom Dock for the Guest account System 10.5
If you're like me, you like Leopard's new guest account and how it is flushed of all data between logins. How nice it is for house guests to be able to log in while visiting, and have no remnants of their activity remain when they leave.

But that darn Dock. What guests are going to want to use Address Book or Garage Band? And for my guests who have never used a Mac before (most of them), where's the Web browser? What does Safari do? How nice it would be for the Guest account's Dock to have only Firefox in it. But if I change the Guest Dock, the Leopard default Dock comes back the next login. Here's a way to set up the Guest account's Dock however you like, and have it automatically come up at each login -- and this doesn't involve hacking the System folder like some other hints floating around out there.
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10.5: Disable Space switching on Command-Tab in 10.5.2 System 10.5
The 10.5.2 version of the Dock has a new hidden preferences flag for Spaces. You can now set OSX to not automatically switch between spaces when you press Command-Tab. This is great for me, because I like to divide things by task, rather than by app. For a given task, I'll probably have a TextEdit window, a Terminal window, and maybe a web browser. By default, when I clicked on a given app, I'd be transported to that app's space, and have to go through a bunch of hoops to get the new window in the space I wanted. Now, I can just Command-Tab to the app I want, and create a new window in the current space! Here's the command in Terminal:
defaults write com.apple.Dock workspaces-auto-swoosh -bool NO
After running the command, you'll need to restart the Dock (killall Dock). To undo, change NO to YES, or use defaults delete com.apple.Dock workspaces-auto-swoosh. Note you'll have to kill the Dock again for the changes to take effect.

Now if I can just figure out how to change spaces using my f-keys...

[robg adds: I edited the hint to reflect my testing results -- it was written with YES as the "don't switch" setting. In testing, though, it's clear that NO is the value to set to disable the auto-switching on Command-Tab. Note that if you have apps assigned to specific Spaces, implementing this hint may leave you confused. That's because the Space won't switch when you Command-Tab to that app (per the setting above), but any commands you send that app will be sent to its assigned Space. So if you press Command-Tab to switch to Safari, and Safari is assigned to another Space, when you press Command-N you won't get a new window in the current Space. Instead, it will show up in Safari's assigned Space. To get the most out of this new hint, it seems best to leave your apps unassigned. Then commands will affect the current Space, regardless of where the app's other windows may reside.]
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10.5: Browse other Time Machine archives in 10.5.2 System 10.5
With the new menu bar icon for Time Machine introduced in 10.5.2, there comes a very easy way to browse through non-default Time Machine archives. Just click the new Time Machine menu bar icon, and hold down Option. When you do, the Enter Time Machine menu item will change to Browse Other Time Machine Disks.
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10.5: Fix the transparent menu bar toggle in 10.5.2 System 10.5
If, after installing 10.5.2, you do not have the option to disable the translucent menu in the Desktop & ScreenSaver System Preferences panel, chances are you might have used this previous hint to disable the translucent menu bar.

Taking a hint from that particular hint... reset the value that was set by running this command: Logout and reboot, and the option will appear again.

[robg adds: I had the option in the Desktop panel, but it simply didn't seem to do anything. Running the above Terminal command fixed the problem.]
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10.5: Use Caps Lock to send keystrokes via AppleScript System 10.5
I finally had that eureka moment, on how to detect Caps Lock using Applescript, while trying to help out on this forum thread about auto-logging out from a Mac.

The Applescript calls KeyboardViewerServer.app, and checks the value of the CAPS key via the Keyboard Viewer window. A return value of 1 means the Caps Lock key is down, and a return of 0 means it's up. The really strange -- but good -- thing is that even if the Keyboard Viewer window is not actually visible, the value still gets returned. (If it pops up the first time you run the script, just close its window). Here's a test script to demonstrate how it works: Save the code as an application with the Stay Open box checked, then run it. TextEdit should launch, and when you press Caps Lock, the digit 1 will start appearing on your screen. Press it again, and the numbers will stop. This one is used to send the keystroke "1" to World of Warcraft as long as Caps Lock is down. Obviously, you can send whatever keystroke you want by modifying the script.

[robg adds: This worked for me when I tested it.]
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10.5: A tip on location-based Smart Folders in 10.5 System 10.5
After installing Leopard, I noticed a missing feature with Smart Folders: I didn't see any GUI-based method for changing the location (path) for the Smart Folder function. In Tiger, there's an "Other" button in the toolbar which allowed for the specification of a path -- but that was removed in Leopard.

After some digging, though, I realized the problem: I was using the File » New Smart Folder menu item to build my searches. Using the menu item, the only options for search location are the computer, the user's home folder, and the Shared folder. However, if I use File » Find (Command-F) instead, then the Smart Search comes up with default search locations of the computer, the currently-selected Finder folder, and the Shared folder.

So in order to search a specified location in Leopard with Smart Folders, you must use Command-F to start the search; the menu item is basically useless. Just make sure you're in the folder you want to search before you press Command-F.

[robg adds: I've never actually used the New Smart Folder menu item in 10.5. I checked, though, and the author's right, which makes me wonder when the menu item would ever be useful. Also, the disappearance of the Others button means you can't make a Smart Search that searches more than one folder at a time. (In 10.4, you could use the Others button to include multiple folders in one search.) If you can think of any way to replicate this behavior in 10.5, please post in the comments.]
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10.5: Beware using Time Machine with a failing disk System 10.5
I noticed some strange log messages and beachball hangs recently while using my MacBook Pro. The log message read MaBi kernel[0]: disk0s2: 0xe0030005 (UNDEFINED). I came to the conclusion that the internal disk was failing (see this blog post and associated comments for some discussion on the error message).

I thought the logical course of action was to attach my Time Machine backup disk, do one last backup, then get the drive replaced and do a restore. It turns out this was not a good idea, and it resulted in the wholesale trashing of the Time Machine backup. Only because I caught the failure early enough, when not much was lost (and noticed what Time Machine was doing), was I able still to take a "normal" rsync-style backup from which to restore from tomorrow when the replacement arrives.

I don't profess to have investigated the matter thoroughly enough to be certain. However, what appears to happen is that Time Machine attempts to run a backup which terminates due to an I/O error like this: But, bizarrely, Time Machine does not post an alert to the logged in user: the error above never even gets seen unless you happen to look in Console.app. Worse, it looks as if Time Machine itself actually thinks that the backup completed successfully. Any files that were not yet copied, including any later files that might have been fine, Time Machine seems to assume they have "gone away."
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10.5: Avoid an external keyboard modifier keys bug System 10.5
Since installing 10.5, I have found that changing the modifier keys (using the Modifier Keys button in the Keyboard tab of the Keyboard & Mouse System Preferences panel) for my USB external keyboard does not work. However, I have found a way to get around this bug...

I changed the modifier keys in the 'All' settings section, and then changed them back in the 'Built-in Keyboard' settings, and this left them modified for only my external keyboard.
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10.5: Print selected pages from Preview System 10.5
To print any series of pages from Preview, open the sidebar and select the pages while holding down the Command key to select non-contiguous pages. (Hold down the Shift key to select contiguous pages.)

Once you have your pages selected, press Command-P to print. Note that you have to select more than one page in order to do this -- selecting a single page reverts back to printing an entire document.
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10.5: Firewall settings and USB Printer sharing System 10.5
After 'Leopardizing' my machines, I couldn't get my wife's MacBook to share the two USB printers that I have hooked up to my G4 iMac. I had noticed this new firewall in 10.5, and thought it would be a good idea to "Block some connections" -- not really knowing which ones it would block.

Well, it turns out that this setting was blocking the MacBook from trying to connect to the shared printers. Once I set the firewall back to "Allow all connections," the wife was happy again.
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