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10.5: Use Quick Look on vcf contact files System 10.5
Simple but true: you can use Quick Look to view contact names stored in .vcf files. Cool!
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10.5: Read Comic Book Archive files via Quick Look System 10.5
Comic Book Archive files -- they have .cbr and .cbz extensions -- are really just compressed folders of .jpegs. Extract the files into your folder of choice using BetterZip (or any other extracting utility). Open the folder in the Finder. Select all of the files and hit the Space Bar.

Click the full screen button in Quick Look and press Pause; that way it won't move to the next page before you're done reading. Use the left and right arrow keys to navigate through the book. Voila, your own comic book reader, and zero resources used.

[robg adds: I added the Wikipedia link, as I wasn't familiar with .cbr and .cbz files. I'm not sure if all extractors will understand those filename extensions, but if not, you might be able to just change the extension to .zip or .rar, etc. and try again.]
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10.5: Use Fuse and NTFS 3G for NTFS writing in 10.5 System 10.5
The good news for 10.5 users is that Fuse, NTFS-3G, and the MacFusion GUI work fine and seem very stable now. Besides NTFS access, Fuse can mount FTP servers and all kinds of other things, too.

I transferred lots of data to and from an NTFS disk that a friend hooked up to my MacBook Pro, and uploaded some things to my FTP server. This setup is golden!
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10.5: Make vanished Spaces windows reappear System 10.5
I occasionally have the problem with Spaces (in both 10.5 and 10.5.1) where active windows for an application stop showing up; this seems to be a bug with Spaces. One solution has been to disable Spaces and re-enable it. But using the scripts from this earlier hint, I can use the "Collect on Current Space" script to get all the windows to show up in whatever space I'm in, regardless of whether they would show up before.

This is a real lifesaver when unsaved changes are in a window that won't show up.
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10.5: Use Front Row to preview documents System 10.5
Because Front Row in 10.5 now uses Quick Look to provide its previews, you can view the first page of any document using Front Row.

Either make a folder containing documents, or an alias of a folder in the Movies folder, and you can then view the first pages of the documents through Front Row by going to Movies » Movies Folder » Name of folder with documents. I just put an alias of my Documents folder there, and I can browse the file structure fine.
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10.5: Run Spotlight searches based on Finder labels System 10.5
To find files by label with Spotlight, or in the Finder's find box, type label:1 (or any other number up to 7). The numbers don't seem to correspond exactly to the order in the Finder; but you can see them by doing mdls on files. Here's how each number corresponds to one of the Finder's label colors:
  • 0 - None
  • 1 - Gray
  • 2 - Green
  • 3 - Purple
  • 4 - Blue
  • 5 - Yellow
  • 6 - Red
  • 7 - Orange
The actual key name is kMDItemFSLabel in the mdls output.
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10.5: Avoid a non-clickable Desktop icon bug System 10.5
I recently lost the clickability of my Desktop icons -- a double-click on an icon on my Desktop did nothing. To add to the confusion, double-clicks in windows would work fine, but a double-click on an email in Apple's Mail didn't work.

After spending hours trying to debug the problem, it suddenly occurred to me that I had (hours earlier) set my mouse double-click speed to fastest (in the Keyboard & Mouse System Preferences panel). Since double-clicks in windows worked fine, I hadn't notice this bug until hours later. For some unexplained reason, the Desktop (Finder) and Mail couldn't pick up double-clicks on the "fastest" mouse setting. Pulling the double-click speed back one notch fixed the problem.

[robg adds: I can confirm this problem exists on my MacBook Pro as well.]
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10.5: Use AppleScript to better work with Spaces System 10.5
I found this post on another site that has some cool AppleScripts for working with Spaces via keyboard shortcuts. Specifically, the scripts allow:
  • Assign to All Spaces: assigns the frontmost window to all spaces.
  • Assign to Space X: opens an input dialog asking you which space to assign the frontmost window to.
  • Collect on Current Space: brings all windows from the frontmost application to the current space.
  • Remove Assignments: remove any application assignments the frontmost window may have.
[robg adds: I haven't tested these, and I borrowed the above descriptions of the scripts directly from the author's site.]
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10.5: Migrate crontabs from 10.4 System 10.5
In Mac OS X 10.4 (and earlier?), crontabs (the lists of tasks scheduled with cron) were stored in /var/cron/tabs. However, in 10.5, they are now stored in /usr/lib/cron/tabs, and the installer doesn't seem to move any existing files from the old to the new location. So, the easy way to bring your old crontabs across is to run the following command in a Terminal:
sudo mv /var/cron/tabs/* /usr/lib/cron/tabs
Note that this command will replace any crontabs you've edited or set up since upgrading to Leopard with the version you had in Tiger; if you think there's likely to be a clash, it would be a good idea to open the old files in a text editor and copy-and-paste the entries across to your new crontab (using crontab -e) instead.
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10.5: One way to use Time Machine and a backup server System 10.5
So I just did my first roll out of Leopard server to a client (one server, six iMacs), and I've run into most of the problems everyone's been having (AFP connection issues, iCal server issues, etc.). Due to the wonderfully large brains that visit this site and the Apple discussion boards, I've got it working together finally. So I felt it was time for me to contribute some of my hopefully good wisdom and share what I did for Time Machine.

Of course I was seduced by the ease of Time Machine (TM for short) and the interface that would let the users recover files simply without harassing IT. But reality set in and I quickly realized that Time Machine does not back up well over the network, even to Leopard Server, which supposedly is made to support it. On top of that, I, like every other sane server admin worth his salt, wants a rotating backup that can be taken off site. For small offices, the best option is usally two external FireWire drives rotated weekly. During Tiger, I used rsync on all the client machines in an office and had them back up directly to the external drive on the office server. When they were swapped out, rsync would keep on backing up as long as the drives and backup destination folder were named the same.

I had hoped that Time Machine would be intelligent to handle this too, but obviously it can't. If the drive is swapped out, the next time TM tries to connect, it fails and I have to manually go to each workstation and tell it to choose the network share I created on the server as a TM destination again. Obviously going around to every client on a weekly basis to do this would suck. So I started my thinking cap and tried to come up with a solution that would give the user the awesome Time Machine interface, but back up over the network to my external drive that gets rotated.

After reading on this site that you could point TM to a partition on your main drive as a backup destination after getting past the "if your drive fails" warning, I figured it out. My clients had new iMacs with 250GB drives, and since they were storing their data on the server, they didn't really need much storage. So using Disk Utility, I added a second partition and shrunk the main partition (thank you Apple for giving us the ability to do this non-destructively in 10.5), so that I had a 150GB main partition and a 100GB backup partition.
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