Mac OS X Panther Hacks: 100 Industrial-Strength Tips & Tools


Like the animal it's named for, Mac OS X Panther is beautiful, sleek, superbly efficient, dangerously alluring, and all muscle under the surface. Beneath its appealing interface, it's a hard-working machine. Those coming to Mac OS X from previous incarnations of the operating system recognize much of the friendly face of the Macintosh they're used to, but they're also plunged into a whole new world. Unix converts to Mac OS X find a familiar FreeBSD-like operating system at the core and many of the command-line ...

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Like the animal it's named for, Mac OS X Panther is beautiful, sleek, superbly efficient, dangerously alluring, and all muscle under the surface. Beneath its appealing interface, it's a hard-working machine. Those coming to Mac OS X from previous incarnations of the operating system recognize much of the friendly face of the Macintosh they're used to, but they're also plunged into a whole new world. Unix converts to Mac OS X find a familiar FreeBSD-like operating system at the core and many of the command-line applications that they're familiar with: it's like an open invitation to roll up their sleeves and hack.

Mac OS X Panther Hacks brings together the perfect combination of tips, tricks, and tools to help serious Mac users—regardless of their background—get the most from their machines. This revised collection reflects the real-world know how of those well-steeped in Unix history and expertise, sharing their no-nonsense, sometimes quick-and-dirty solutions to administering and taking full advantage of everything a Unix desktop has to offer: Web, Mail, and FTP serving, security services, SSH, Perl and shell scripting, compiling, configuring, scheduling, networking, and hacking. Add to that the experience of die-hard Macintosh users, customizing and modifying their hardware and software to meet their needs. The end result is cool stuff no power user should be without.

The hacks in the book range from the quick and easy to the more complex. Each can be read easily in a few minutes, saving countless hours of searching for the right answer. Mac OS X Panther Hacks provides direct, hands-on solutions in topics such as:

  • User Interface
  • Accessories (iPod, USB devices, mobile phones, PDAs, etc.)
  • Wired and wireless networking (Ethernet, WiFi, Bluetooth, etc.)
  • Email (servers and clients)
  • Web (servers and clients)
  • Messaging (iChat and associated apps)
  • Printing and Faxing (sharing printers, fax server, etc.)
  • Multimedia

If you want more than your average Mac user—you want to explore and experiment, unearth shortcuts, create useful tools, and come up with fun things to try on your own—this book will set you on the right track. Written for users who need to go beyond what's covered in conventional manuals—Mac OS X Panther Hacks will bring your Mac to its full potential.
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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
The Barnes & Noble Review
Running Mac OS X Panther? Bet you didn’t know you could add keyboard shortcuts to your favorite Safari bookmarks. Or share your Address Book and iCal calendar with a colleague, and stay synced automatically. Or feed streaming audio to your iPod. Or transform your Mac into a full-fledged mail server. You can do all that, and about 96 other surprising things, with Mac OS X Hacks.

Like: automatically grab copies of web pages for offline viewing. Or search your email using a Google-like interface. Or build a household MP3 server using Rendezvous. Or make a restorable “carbon copy” of your hard drive. Or read your old iChat conversations. A little scripting, a little freeware, and there’s no end to what your Mac can do. Bill Camarda

Bill Camarda is a consultant, writer, and web/multimedia content developer. His 15 books include Special Edition Using Word 2003 and Upgrading & Fixing Networks for Dummies, Second Edition.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780596007188
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 6/11/2004
  • Series: Hacks Series
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 592
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 9.12 (h) x 1.24 (d)

Meet the Author

Rael Dornfest is a Researcher at the O'Reilly & Associates focusing on technologies just beyond the pale. He assesses, experiments, programs, and writes for the O'Reilly network and O'Reilly publications. Dornfest is Program Chair of the O'Reilly Emerging Technology Conference, Chair of the RSS-DEV Working Group, and developer of Meerkat: An Open Wire Service. In his copious free time, he develops bits and bobs of Open Source software and maintains his raelity bytes Weblog.

James Duncan Davidson is a freelance author, software developer, and consultant focusing on Mac OS X, Java, XML, and open source technologies. He is the author of Learning Cocoa with Objective-C (published by O'Reilly & Associates) and is a frequent contributor to the O'Reilly Network online website as well as publisher of his own website, x180 (, where he keeps his popular weblog. Duncan was the creator of Apache Tomcat and Apache Ant and was instrumental in their donation to the Apache Software Foundation by Sun Microsystems . While working at Sun, he authored two versions of the Java Servlet API specification as well as the Java API for XML Processing. Duncan regularly presents at conferences all over the world on topics ranging from open source and collaborative development to programming Java more effectively. He didn't graduate with a Computer Science degree, but sees that as a benefit in helping explain how software works. His educational background is in Architecture (the bricks and mortar kind), the essence of which he applies to every software problem that finds him. He currently resides in San Francisco, California.

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Table of Contents

Chapter 1. GUI
1. Enjoy the Animations
2. Spice Up Your Desktop
3. Use Labels Effectively
4. Launchers, or, Dial c-Space M for Mail
5. Wear Multiple Hats, Run Multiple Desktops
6. Keyboard and Mouse Shortcuts
7. Tweak Menu Extras
8. Incorporate Services into Your Workflow
9. Autocomplete Your Words
10. Get Sidetracked
11. eMac, Meet eBook
12. Build Your Own Konfabulator Widget
Chapter 2. Scripting
13. A Hacker's Introduction to AppleScript
14. AppleScript the GUI
15. Fulfill Wishes with Address Book
16. Fetch the Paper, AppleScript Style
17. Batch-Convert Screenshots to JPEGs
18. Build AppleScript Apps with FaceSpan
19. Mac::Glue Your Perl
20. Update iChat Status with Mac::Glue
21. Hack Your Address Book with Perl
22. Manipulate Images on the Command Line
23. Script CoreGraphics with Python
24. Tap RSS with Shell Scripts
25. Add a Dab of GUI to Unix Scripts
26. Automatically Dim Your Laptop Screen
Chapter 3. Web, Chat, and Mail
27. Hack Safari
28. Browse Different
29. Avoid the Ads
30. Read Syndicated Online Content
31. Breathe Life into Your Staid Buddy List
32. Better iChat Transcripts
33. Gather Ye Buddies While Ye May
34. USB Videoconferencing
35. Provide Remote Support
36. IRC: Chatrooms for Hackers
37. Label Your Mail
38. Search Your Mail with ZOË
39. Encrypt and Sign Your Mail
40. Interleave Mail and Pine
Chapter 4. Multimedia
41. Build a Household MP3 Server
42. Clutter Your Desktop with Music
43. Feed Streaming Audio to Your iPod
44. Autofeed Text to your iPod
45. Automate a Web Photo Gallery with iPhoto and Perl
46. Keep a Digital Diary
47. Rendezvous Picture Transfer
48. Rotate Your Movie from Horizontal to Vertical
49. Store Pictures and Movies in Your iPod
Chapter 5. Gadgets and Hardware
50. Expand Your Screen Real Estate
51. iPod Tips and Tricks
52. Build an Emergency iPod Boot Volume
53. Pair and iSync with Bluetooth Devices
54. Use Your Cellphone as a Bluetooth Modem
55. Share Your Mac's Net Connection with a Bluetooth Phone
56. Control Your Mac with a PDA
57. Listen to Bluetooth
58. Print Without Wires
59. Zip, Zap, and Sync Your Gizmos
60. iOscillate
Chapter 6. Networking and Network Apps
61. Share Your Address Book and iCal
62. Collaborative Editing with Rendezvous
63. See Spike Share His Clipboard
64. Detect Wireless Networks
65. Secure Your AirPort Network with WPA
66. Manage Multiple AirPort Base Stations
67. Access Remote Desktops
Chapter 7. Servers
68. Apache Behind the Scenes
69. Turn on WebDAV
70. Turn on PHP
71. Advertise Web Sites with Rendezvous
72. Set Up a Postfix Mail Server
73. Relay Mail with Postfix
74. Set Up Secondary Mail Servers
75. Create Mail Aliases
76. Set Up IMAP and POP Mail Servers
Chapter 8. Files and Backup
77. Synchronize Your Files
78. Edit Special Unix Files
79. Find and Unerase Misplaced and Deleted Files
80. Store and Search Your Records as PDF
81. Flex OmniOutliner
82. Decide What to Back Up
83. Automate Backups with Existing Tools
84. Back Up Your Digital Music Collection
85. Make a Carbon Copy
86. Bluetooth File Exchange and Browsing
87. Secure File Sharing with SSH
Chapter 9. System Administration
88. Become an Administrator for a Moment
89. Understand Your User Account
90. Rename a User Account
91. Use the Terminal
92. Set Shell Environment Variables
93. A Security Primer
94. Stash Data in the Keychain
95. Panther Maintenance
96. Use iCal to Schedule Tasks
97. Use periodic to Schedule Tasks
98. Use cron to Schedule Tasks
99. Reinstall Mac OS X
100. Bypass the GUI
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