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10.5: Use text snippets to quickly build accurate searches System 10.5
Spotlight in Leopard is much, much better. So good, in fact, that I am using it to replace QuickSilver. However, one downside to Spotlight is that it doesn't learn as well as QS so certain Applications/Preferences/Files require a lot of typing. To get around this, I am taking advantage of the new Spotlight commands plus TextExpander to create my own favorites list.

First, I realized that if I made the Spotlight search take advantage of the Spotlight Commands listed by David Pogue in this hint, I could create a search that will always work to give me what I want as the top hit. Then, I could link that to a snippet in TextExpander, and I will have created a preferred search that is short and sweet.

Thus, I linked the text kind:preferences keyboard to a TextExpander snippet of kb so that when I type kb in Spotlight, it expands to kind:preferences keyboard, and the Keyboard & Mouse System Preferences pane I am looking for is now top of the list.

In addition, you can use Spotlight Commands plus TextExpander to create and combine a panoply of search criterion to direct you to favorite files, applications, types of documents, date ranges, etc. So a snippet that expands to kind:images can be followed by one that expands to date:"this week" to show you all the images from this week.

In essence, these become temporary Smart Folders created as needed, and discarded just as easily.

[robg adds: Obviously, you could use TypeIt4Me or any of the other text snippet insertion apps to do this trick. (And if you're not using such an app, I highly recommend it to anyone who spends the majority of their day at their machine typing -- they are indeed great timesavers.]
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10.5: Allow the system.log file to be rotated daily System 10.5
Rotation of system logs is no longer managed by the daily script. Apple, in their wisdom, have assigned this duty to newsyslog, run by launchd according to the com.apple.newsyslog daemon instructions.

The default (as of 10.5.1) is that newsyslog is run by launchd at midnight every day. You might see where I am going with this one -- if your machine is off or asleep at this time, the rotation won't be run.

Now launchd will run newsyslog when you wake your machine in the morning, but the newsyslog.conf file instructs newsyslog to only rotate the system.log within an hour of the allotted time, ie midnight. All other logs (eg ftp.log, ipfw.log etc) are set to rotate when they reach a certain size, but system.log has no size limit so could grow and grow...

The easy solution is to change the following line in /etc/newsyslog.conf:
/var/log/system.log                     640  7     *    @T00  J
... to this ...
/var/log/system.log                     640  7     *    24    J
This should result in the log being rotated every 24 hours, regardless of what times your machine is awake. For more info, newsyslog and newsyslog.conf have man pages describing their function. On a related note, Lingon has been updated to Leopard status, and offers the ability to alter the times of all the launchd functions.

[robg adds: This hint was also submitted by user rflorence, who recommends using 22, 23, or 24 as the value, depending on how often/long your machine sleeps. On the queue site, user gshenaut suggests perhaps changing the system.log entry so that it, too, is rotated based on its size and not the time of day. There's definitely something wrong about the current setup -- my system.log file was 4.7M. I just changed the system to rotate the log when it reaches 900KB in size instead, and it worked as expected (the log rotated within an hour of making the edit). You'll need to use sudo to edit the file, and even then, I had to force the changes with a w! in vi.]
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10.5: Automatically restart a crashed program System 10.5
This older hint described a method by which to auto-restart a crashed application automatically by monitoring the crash log for the app. This was done by watching the log file with a LaunchAgent.

As WCityMike notes in this forum thread, Leopard writes multiple crash logs with a date and time-stamp in the filename for each crash, rather than appending to one log file as in Tiger. For example:
~/Library/Logs/CrashReporter/gimp-2.2_2007-12-10-100248_G4.crash
~/Library/Logs/CrashReporter/gimp-2.2_2007-12-10-091933_G4.crash
etc...
So watching a single file will not work in Leopard. Read on for my solution.
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10.5: Disable dictionary and calculator results in Spotlight System 10.5
You can prevent Spotlight from showing dictionary results by typing the following into Terminal:
defaults write com.apple.spotlight DictionaryLookupEnabled NO
The same goes for calculations:
defaults write com.apple.spotlight CalculationEnabled NO
Note that for either of these changes to take effect, you need to restart Spotlight. Use Terminal to do so:
sudo killall Spotlight
I'm not sure why anyone would want to disable either of those features, but it is possible.

[robg adds: To reverse either of these settings, repeat the commands but replace NO with YES, then kill Spotlight again.]
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10.5: Read and rip hybrid SACDs System 10.5
After making a clean install of Leopard on my 1GHz 12" PowerBook, I am now able to read the regular redbook CD layer on hybrid SACDs. As has been reported by several users, these discs would previously not even show up in the Finder (or they showed up as an empty CD/DVD etc). It seems like Mac OS X is finally able to recognize these discs, which is useful for anyone who would like to rip the redbook layer on their SACDs!
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10.5: Drag from stacks directly to other applications System 10.5
This may seem obvious, but has not been mentioned anywhere that I have looked. You can drag items off a stack to open them in a different application than usual (i.e. Neooffice instead of Microsoft Word). This is in addition to dragging items off the stack to remove them from the folder. This solved one of the most annoying issues about stacks for me!

[robg adds: You can drag them onto docked applications, or onto applications in a Finder window, in the sidebar, or in the toolbar.]
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10.5: The two Email Addresses metadata attributes System 10.5
I discovered this rather confusing dupe in Finder 10.5 while making several catch-all smart folders that included email messages that matched a certain criteria. It turns out that there are two attributes labeled Email addresses in Finder's metadata attributes list (visible when you select Other from the Kind pop-up in the Finder search window):
  • Email addresses: Email addresses associated with this item
  • Email addresses: Email addresses
The correct attribute to use if one is looking for emails sent by a certain email address is the second one in the list above; the one with the lame description. The other (less useful) Email addresses attribute appears to only return Address Book vCards, as you can see in this screenshot.

Note that the Spotlight items metadata attribute must already be included in the search for either of the Email addresses attributes to return any results. One could achieve similar search results by making a search for a certain text string that limits the results to mail messages as well, but if you're making a large, nested search criteria like I was, using the Email addresses attribute is quicker.

Anyway, this should clear up which of the identically-labelled metadata attributes to use when constructing your own search criteria.
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10.5: Store different files on different Time Machine drives System 10.5
I love Time Machine, but I still think it's incomplete. I'd love to be able to back up different stuff to different disks: this way, when I'm home I could back up the whole system on my large 500GB external drive (as I use a PowerBook), and when I'm on the road, I could back up only some relevant folders on my external 30GB hard disk. With Time Machine, you can back up to different disks, but you can't back up different stuff to different disks.

Before reading on, please understand that the following might be dangerous to your data: please back up on a different disk before proceding. I am not responsible for any data loss you might encouter; this hint has only been tested by me! You should also know that this hint causes (I still don't know why) the deletion of the data contained in the folder /.fseventsd/. I thought this would cause a big mess, but everything seems to work fine so far.

With those warnings in mind, read on for my solution...
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10.5: A solution for PackageMaker failing in 10.5 System 10.5
If you've used the PackageMaker command line tool in 10.4, and tried to run the same command in 10.5, you may experience a failure with the error:

*** Terminating app due to uncaught exception 'NSInvalidArgumentException', reason: 'launch path not accessible'

This is because otool is in /Developer/usr/bin and not in /usr/bin where PackageMaker is expecting it. Simply symlink to otool by typing:
ln -s /Developer/usr/bin/otool /usr/bin/otool
[robg adds: Over on the queue site, a comment notes that the only time this will happen is if the user unchecks the UNIX Development Support option in the Xcode installer. This feature, which is enabled by default, is described by Apple in this way: "Optional content to allow command-line development from the boot volume. Installs a duplicate of the GCC compiler and command line tools included with the core Xcode developer tools package into the boot volume. It also installs header files, libraries, and other resources for developing software using Mac OS X into the boot volume. This package is provided for compatibility with shell scripts and makefiles that require access to the developer tools in specific system locations. This content is not relocatable and will only be installed onto the boot volume." Thanks, fds!]
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10.5: An easy way to defragment a drive's free space System 10.5
If you wish to defragment free space on a drive here's how to do it quite easily.

Using Disk Utility, repartition your drive, giving the strict minimum space required for the original volume, and then create a second volume with the remaining available space. This takes time, as all your data will be joined on the volume that is resized but not erased. Then when finished, get rid of the volume you just created, giving back all available space to the original volume. This part is fast. That's it; you're done.

[robg adds: I haven't tested this one, but 10.5's Disk Utility will supposedly allow partitioning without erasing the existing data. If you're going to try this hint, I strongly suggest you have a good backup first, just in case things go wrong. Note that Apple states most users do not need to defragment -- there will be little benefit to the typical user, thanks to OS X's built-in tools to handle fragmentation.]
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