I have always found that Mac OS X lacks an elegant yet free downloading tool that supports segmented downloading until I met ">aria2, which is a linux-based command-line downloading tool. From their website:
aria2 is a download utility with resuming and segmented downloading. Supported protocols are HTTP/HTTPS/FTP/BitTorrent. It also supports Metalink version 3.0.It is very stable and fast (at least no slower than Speed Download and iGetter on my computer. However, the latest 0.9 version of aria2 does not compile on Mac OS X. After some work, I figured out how to make it compile -- read on for the how-to.
10.4: Add readline support to Tiger's python
Jan 12, '07 07:30:00AM • Contributed by: Anonymous
For licensing reasons, Python on OS X comes without readline support (libreadline is GPL). Unfortunatley, this earlier hint no longer works in Tiger.
There is, however, a standalone readline distutils package made by Bill Bumgarner. I have slightly adapted it [click to download] to work either with a pre-installed readline from Fink, or with the included readline-5.1 without installing it. Hope this helps!
[robg adds: I haven't tested this one.]
I have been searching for some sort of automated backup while I wait patiently for 10.5's Time Machine. While searching, I found this article on TUAW covering one method of automating the process.
I have re-written the backup scripts from that article to make them a little friendlier. Current features include:
Full code and instructions can be found here, and comments and suggestions welcome...
[robg adds: I haven't tested this one, but since backup is a personal hot topic of mine (not enough people have working (ideally multiple) backups), I thought it worth sharing.]
Previous hints have mentioned that you can get a list of Unix-level commands in the Terminal via auto-completion features of the shell, and that you can get a one-line synopsis of a specified Unix command with the whatis command -- and that this can be used to search for a desired command.
The hint presents a way to generate a list of all of the Unix commands in your execution PATH (see this Unix FAQ for an explanation of the execution PATH variable) with a one-line synopsis for each program (assuming this one-line description is available). This is accomplished via a rather complicated pipeline of commands:
Here are the first several lines of output from the above command when run on my Mac:
If you want the output of the above command to be saved into a file instead of appearing in the Terminal window, add a greater-than sign and then the name of the file you want to create at the end of the command.
If you use the MacPorts and Fink package managers, you might find it useful to be able to update both package managers with one simple command. I wrote the following simple script which does just that:
Just create a file containing that code and save it, say, to your home folder. Assuming that the file's been saved as ~you/updf (where you is your short username), just cd to that directory and make the code executable:
If it's not already set, you might also add the line PATH=$PATH:~you to your profile. Then simply type sudo upfd, wait a little bit, and you're done. Hopefully, that is, if there are no compilation errors, but that's another story!
Create an HTML page from Safari's bookmarks
Dec 27, '06 07:31:00AM • Contributed by: Anonymous
I was trying to figure out a way to be able to access my my Safari bookmarks from anywhere, without having to dig through the plist folder over ssh (especially on a slow connection). So, I wrote a shell script to do it; it does require plcat, which is part of the free PLtools package.
[robg adds: Set the script to executable (chmod a+x script_name), and edit the script to replace **YOUR USERNAME** with, well, your user name. I tested the script, and it works -- it creates an index.html file in whichever directory you run it in. You can then edit or view the index.html file using any text editor, such as vi.]
I always wanted to use the ffmpeg command line tool (the one ffmpegX is the GUI of) in Terminal, but I didn't find it in Fink, and I didn't want to compile it from an experimental source. Well, there is a working binary of ffmpeg bundled with ffmpegX. To get it, simply follow these steps:
[robg adds: There may be other ways to get the binary as well, but this one seems quite simple.]
When you get an attachment in Mail, the usual way to move it to a folder is via the Save button in the message or a control-click and then choose Save (or you can drag it into a Finder window). Either of these methods brings up a Finder window from which you can mouse around to put it where you want.
But if you are already working in a Terminal window in the directory where you want to save the attachment, type 'cp ' (note the space), then drag the attachment to the Terminal window and drop it there. Finally, type a period. When you're done, your Terminal window will look something like this:
Press Return and, voila!, your attachment is copied.
[robg adds: I broke the Terminal line for a narrower display; there won't be a line break when you actually do it.]
A simple shell script to run system maintenance tasks
Dec 20, '06 07:30:00AM • Contributed by: Anonymous
I created this simple bash script to perform periodic maintenance. I put the script file in my ~/bin directory, and I added the folliwing line to my .profile file (where my_user is my short username):
Now, when I want to perform maintenance, I open a Terminal window and type maint at the prompt.
[robg adds: Remember to chmod 655 ~/bin/maint to make the code executable. We've had a number of hints here over the years dealing with the periodic maintenance scripts. There are also numerous utility apps that will do this for you as well.]
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