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Create a private mail server UNIX
OS X includes the standard UNIX 'sendmail' program, which can be configured to send and receive mail from the internet. Effectively, this means you can have an unlimited number of email accounts for yourself and family members. Setting up sendmail, however, can be quite tricky - especially if you want it to both send and receive internet mail.

There have been a number of tips posted here on dealing with this issue (try searching on 'sendmail'), but today's Mac Resource Page has the best start-to-finish description of the process that I've seen yet. The MRP covers getting a domain name, configuring sendmailsetting up users, and getting a POP server running to handle the routing of the mail.

If you have a full-time Internet connection and want to handle your own mail, give Eric's MRP a visit today! After today, you'll have to search for the October 30th posting to find the details.
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Open the current terminal path in the Finder UNIX
In the "Open this folder in the Terminal" hint, there was a little exchange about how to do the opposite - how do you open the current Terminal path as a folder in the Finder?

Marc responded with the answer (as a comment) before I could get this new tip published, but I felt it was worth a separate entry to make finding it easier in the future.

To open whatever Terminal path you are currently traversing in the Finder, simply type:
open .
and a new Finder window will open up with the directory's contents -- notice the "." at the end; if you leave it out, nothing will happen. Marc also mentioned a couple of other "GUI/Terminal" integration tools - pbcopy and pbpaste, which duplicate copy and paste in the Finder.
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Free command-line MP3 encoder UNIX
In case some of you didn't know, OSX users have access to the latest and greatest in MP3 encoding software - LAME ... absolutely free! Just download the latest version from CVS or simply get the latest daily release. After downloading, just decompress the archive, switch to the terminal and change to the directory of the source, type "su" to become root, then do:
make install
Then type 'rehash' or restart the term and that's all! For help using LAME, use the command lame --longhelp. For very high quality mp3s (see, use the command:
lame --r3mix -q0 --id3v2-only --tt "[insert title here]" --ta "[insert artist here]"[space]
"/Volumes/Audio CD/Track [XX].aiff" "/Users/[username]/Desktop/[outputfilenamehere].mp3"
Replace [space] with an actual space character and enter the command on one line; make the appropriate substitutions for track title and artist, the track number (replace [XX] with the actual number), your username, and the output file name.

[Editor's note: A previous hint explained how to download a precompiled version of LAME; the above instructions will create a much newer version. You'll need the Developer Tools installed to build LAME.]
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OroborOSX window manager for XFree86 UNIX
Check out OroborOSX. It is an X Window System (also known as X11) window manager that integrates X11 very nicely with OSX.

To quote from that web page, "The aim of OroborOSX is to make X11 windows look, and ultimately behave, as closely as possible to 'native' OS X windows." It's a very small application that's easy to install. It requires XDarwin and XFree86.

I'm using the latest version, 0.75 alpha 2 and am enjoying it much more than any other X window manager that I've tried. Take a look.
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Burn discs from the terminal UNIX
From Ian M's blogger page:

"Open /usr/share/init/tcsh/aliases and add:
alias burn 'hdiutil burn'
alias mount 'hdiutil mount'
alias eject 'hdiutil eject'
so you can burn, mount and eject disk images on UNIX off the bat without the hdiutil thing, quite a simple trick. /usr/share/init/tcsh/aliases is for a system-wide implementation of aliases, for a per-user implementation use ~/aliases.mine."
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XFree86, fink, etc - Solution Guide #1 UNIX
[Click here for a large version of the image]

IMPORTANT NOV 14 UPDATE: The Mac development community appears to have lost a key member. Christoph Pfisterer, the lead developer on the Fink project, has given up. He lists the causes in his resignation letter, which I strongly encourage all of you to read. In particular, follow the links at the end of the letter for some excellent examples of how not to work with the Open Source development community. If you're interested in Fink at all, please take a moment and send a letter of thanks to Christoph for all his efforts. His contributions cannot be overstated, and he will be missed.

NOV 6 UPDATE: XDarwin is now available from It addresses a number of bugs; see the comments for my posting with the full list of fixes.

UPDATE: Version 1.1 has been posted with a couple of typo corrections and a new expanded section on the methods of installing packages using Fink.

Although there have been a number of threads here on the installation and use of XFree86 (an open-source version of the X Window System) on OS X, I hadn't had much luck getting it installed on my system. Then I found Fink, an amazing package installer for OS X. With Fink, literally hundreds of pre-compiled UNIX and X Window applications (including XFree86) are as easy to install as typing a sentence. So I installed XFree86 (in two separate wasy), Fink, WindowMaker (a window manager based on Next's OpenSTEP), and GIMP (a complex image manipulation program that rivals Photoshop in its complexity).

Although Fink makes this all quite trivial, I still stumbled a few times, given my relative lack of experience with UNIX and total lack of experience with XFree86. So I decided to write up a simple guide on the installation of these packages on OS X. The result is the first of an occasional (whenever I get the urge and time!) series of "Solution Guides", which will explain exactly how to get certain things done on OS X.

This particular guide covers XFree86, Fink, WindowMaker and the GIMP. It is designed for XFree86 novices (like myself!), and does not go into the much detail on how to use what's been installed. It simply relates the steps I used to get each piece running. If you're an advanced user, there's probably nothing there you haven't seen before. So if you'd like to get the above programs running on OS X, take a look at the Mac OS X Hints Solution Guide #1. As with anything like this, what you do to your machine is your responsibility, so make sure you have a backup before you start!

All comments and technical corrections are welcomed, but I cannot possibly respond to all the individual questions that may arise. Feel free to post them here as questions in the comments area, however, and someone will more than likely respond.
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Kill any process by name UNIX
To kill an evil process you have to find the process ID through top or ps, in short it's a long process.

I devised a way around this using embedded commands. Type the following into the terminal to get a kill that works on process names:
alias newkill 'kill `top -l1 | grep -i \!* | cut -c1-5`'
The command outouts a log version of top that gets passed to grep that searches for the string you enter, cuts the first 5 characters, the PID and finally passes that to the kill command.

Be careful, top doesn't always display the entire name of the process and it will match all instances of the string and kill them.

[Editor's note: Definitely use some care here! Others simply use a modified "grep" and "kill" combo to accomplish the same thing. If you want this to be permanent, it will need to go into your aliases.mine file.]
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Terminal command history keystroke UNIX
Nifty little feature of the Terminal. If you press the up and down keys, it'll cycle through a history of the commands that you've entered. Handy for that annoying directory that you misspelled trying to switch. Just press the up key and make the necessary changes.

[Editor's note: If you're new to the Terminal and UNIX in general, I highly recommend a couple of things. First, read Neal Parikh's Terminal Guide, linked in the top right box off the macosxhints' home page. Second, download ManThor, a Cocoa application for reading UNIX manual pages ("man pages"). Install and launch ManThor (which features formatting, printing, and searching - all free!) and then type "tcsh" in the search box. The man pages for tcsh are very very thorough, and explain about the history buffer as well as a number of other cool features. Well worth the reading time!]
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Unstuff from the commandline UNIX
It's been a personal peeve of mine that Aladdin makes a CLI interface to their product for Linux, but not for the Mac. Here is a quick alias to fix this. It's not perfect (if you aren't logged in, this will have problems), but it works. The command to create the alias is:
alias   unstuff "open -a '/Applications/StuffIt Lite 6.5/StuffIt'"
(your path to StuffIt Expander might be different)

Example usage:
% unstuff somearchive.sit

[Editor's note: To make this alias permanent, search here for 'alias' for instructions on creating your own alias file.]
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A script to help change file user ID's UNIX
I am in the process of getting my Mac integrated into our unix environment so I can NFS mount the unix directories. That meant that I had to change my UID on my Mac to match my Unix UID.

Using NetInfo Manager, it's easy enough to change a UID, and it also nicely updates the UID of all of the files in your official home directory. However, I had created files throughout the system as I installed software and such, which meant I had to update the owner of all of those files myself.

To automate this process, I created the following perl script. It takes the old UID, your short username and the directory to fix (allowing you to selectively fix directories, or allowing you to fix removable media at a later time). If you want to fix everything, just give it '/'.

[Editor's note: Read the rest of this article for Scott's script. I have not tried this on my machine.]
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