Mac OS X Panther Timesaving Techniques For Dummies


The Mac OS X Panther is incredibly full-featured. Chances are, you don’t fully appreciate all the shortcuts and timesaving options you have right at your fingertips. Mac OS X Panther Timesaving Techniques For Dummies gets you up to speed fast with over 60 timesaving techniques! While it includes keyboard shortcuts to expedite basic tasks, it goes further and shows you how to customize your Mac so it works faster for the way you work and the types of things you work on. ...
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The Mac OS X Panther is incredibly full-featured. Chances are, you don’t fully appreciate all the shortcuts and timesaving options you have right at your fingertips. Mac OS X Panther Timesaving Techniques For Dummies gets you up to speed fast with over 60 timesaving techniques! While it includes keyboard shortcuts to expedite basic tasks, it goes further and shows you how to customize your Mac so it works faster for the way you work and the types of things you work on. Step-by-step instructions help you:
  • Perfect your keyboard and mouse navigation techniques, so you can get where you want to go faster
  • Use keyboard shortcuts and create shortcuts of your own
  • Customize the Finder, Windows, and the Dock
  • Handle files, aliases, favorites, and icons so you always know what’s what and what’s where
  • Get proficient and efficient with Safari and Internet Explorer Web browsers, searches, e-mail, and more

Mac OS X Panther Timesaving Techniques For Dummies was written by Larry Ullman, and Marc Liyanage. Larry is the Director of Digital Media Technologies at DMC Insights, Inc., author of four other computer books, and an obsessive Mac tinkerer. Marc is a senior software engineer at FutureLAB AG. He has programmed Macs professionally for 15 years and writes Cocoa software for fun! (No, you probably don’t need to know what that is, but if you want to, you’ll find it in the book.) With an easy style and lots of screen shots, they show you how to:

  • Make the most of multimedia
  • Take advantage of services—at least a dozen handy little tools available in many of your applications like the Grab utility for taking screen shots and Mail Services
  • Save time online with AutoFill forms
  • Make the most of iChat, for communicating with your buddies and iTunes for managing your music collection
  • Use iPhoto to manage your digital library, create photo albums, present photographs online, edit images, and more
  • Configure and use Rendezvous to network computers and devices, locate people in iChat, listen to other music collections in iTunes, and more
  • Have your computer and your cell phone talk to each other using Bluetooth wireless communications

Mac OS X Panther Timesaving Techniques For Dummies covers topics from A (ACC file format) to Z (Zingg application, contextual menus), literally. The index is 20 pages, with three columns to a page. That’s a lot of tips! You pick and choose the ones to use—the ones that will save you time and help you make the most of the features and options of Mac OS X Panther.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
The Barnes & Noble Review
You’ve been using Mac OS X for a while now. You can get the job done. But you’re ready to do it better, faster, more efficiently. You’re ready for Mac OS X Panther Timesaving Techniques for Dummies.

Use the same app every day? Start it automatically. Speed up logins. Streamline your Dock (or even set up multiple Docks for multiple tasks). Manage your files faster from the Terminal. Discover keyboard shortcuts you’ve never noticed before.

Cut down on spam. Slim down your hard drive. Get more out of Google, .Mac, iChat, iCal, iTunes, iPhoto, even your iPod. Network faster. Back up better. We’re talking 60 chapters of bite-sized Mac tips: something for every day, and every mood. 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: 9780764558122
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 4/9/2004
  • Series: For Dummies Series
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 512
  • Product dimensions: 7.50 (w) x 9.25 (h) x 1.03 (d)

Meet the Author

Larry Ullman, the Director of Digital Media Technologies at DMC Insights, Inc., has been working with Apple computers for more than 20 years.

Marc Liyanage, a senior software engineer at futureLAB AG, has been using and programming Apple computers for 15 years.

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Table of Contents


Part I: Starting, Stopping, and Running Your Mac Faster.

Technique 1: Installing Panther without the Hassle.

Technique 2: Starting Up with Speed.

Technique 3: Running Panther Faster.

Technique 4: When Good Applications Go Bad.

Technique 5: Logging Out and Shutting Down.

Part II: Optimizing Your Interface.

Technique 6: Working with Displays.

Technique 7: Speedy Keyboard Navigation.

Technique 8: Essential Keyboard Shortcuts.

Technique 9: A Faster Finder.

Technique 10: Customizing Windows for Your Convenience.

Technique 11: Establishing an Efficient Dock.

Technique 12: Saving Steps with Contextual Menus.

Technique 13: Easily Managing Windows with Exposé.

Part III: Handling Files (And Other Stuff) Quickly.

Technique 14: Organizing Your Home Directory.

Technique 15: Managing Aliases, Favorites, and Icons.

Technique 16: Managing Information Effectively.

Technique 17: Working with Files.

Technique 18: Finding Files in the Finder.

Technique 19: Slimming Down Your Hard Drive.

Part IV: Improving Application Performance.

Technique 20: Managing Applications.

Technique 21: Launching Applications Fast.

Technique 22: Switching, Hiding, and Quitting Applications.

Technique 23: Opening Files Faster.

Technique 24: Saving and Printing Files.

Technique 25: Cut, Copy, Paste.

Technique 26: Managing Fonts.

Technique 27: Getting to Know Services.

Part V: Cranking Up Your Internet Activities.

Technique 28: Surfing with Safari.

Technique 29: Surfing with Other Browsers.

Technique 30: Managing Bookmarks Better.

Technique 31: Speedy Searches with Google.

Technique 32: Searching the Internet with Other Tools.

Technique 33: Mastering Mail.

Technique 34: Stopping Spam in Its Tracks.

Technique 35: Innovative iChat.

Part VI: Optimizing Your Network.

Technique 36: Getting Your Mac Online.

Technique 37: The Wonderful World of Wireless Networking.

Technique 38: Sharing the Wealth with Rendezvous.

Technique 39: Share the Love: Sharing Files, Printers, and More.

Technique 40: Network Security.

Technique 41: Your Guide to .Mac: $100 Well Spent.

Part VII: Fast and Furious Multimedia.

Technique 42: iTunes: Rockin’ in the (Partially) Free World.

Technique 43: Working with iPhoto.

Technique 44: Staying on Schedule with iCal.

Technique 45: Snapping Screenshots Fast.

Technique 46: Working with CDs and DVDs.

Technique 47: Getting More Than Music out of Your iPod.

Part VIII: Security and Maintenance.

Technique 48: Better Backups with rsync and .Mac.

Technique 49: Battling Viruses.

Technique 50: Keeping Your Software Up-to-Date.

Technique 51: Securing Files.

Technique 52: Proper Password Policy.

Technique 53: Useful Utilities.

Part IX: The Scary Or Fun Stuff.

Technique 54: Controlling Cellphones with Bluetooth.

Technique 55: The Terminal, the Finder, and You.

Technique 56: Managing and Finding Files Fast.

Technique 57: Piping and Redirecting Output with the Terminal.

Technique 58: Viewing and Editing Text Files.

Technique 59: Customizing Your Terminal.

Technique 60: AppleScript and You.

Technique 61: Entertaining Yourself with Screen Savers.


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First Chapter

Mac OS X Panther Timesaving Techniques For Dummies

By Larry Ullman Marc Liyanage

John Wiley & Sons

ISBN: 0-7645-5812-9

Chapter One

Installing Panther without the Hassle


Before you can discover the magic of Apple's latest, greatest operating system, you need a version of it running on your Mac. You might even wonder whether Mac OS X Panther is right for you. Because you're holding this book, the answer is presumably yes, but to explain why, we begin this Technique by discussing some of Panther's benefits and new technologies.

The installation process itself has a few variables, and comprehending the different choices can not only save you time during the installation process but also give you a more reliable operating system over the long haul. You should also be able to make knowledgeable decisions about formatting and partitioning your disk drive before you install the OS. Finally, we show you how to breeze through the Setup Assistant (Apple's program for easing you through the startup process) and then wrap up with a discussion of foolproof file transfers.

What Panther Can Do for You

The benefits of using Panther break down into two broad categories: operating system improvements and better versions of Apple's many wondrous applications. What you'll find in Panther itself is

  •   A new style of Finder windows with improved navigation, much better search capability, and built-in actions (which are kind of like contextual menus)
  •   The return of Labels, the much maligned-but still used-Mac OS 9 feature that dropped off the radar in previous versions of OS X
  •   Greatly improved Open and Save dialogs for applications
  •   Exposé, which is a fantastic tool for immediate access to open windows and documents
  •   Built-in fax software that allows you to send and receive faxes via your computer without third-party applications
  •   Better integration with your iDisk for .Mac users
  •   Surprisingly easy security provided by File Vault, which is an encryption tool for your folders and files
  •   The ability to more readily access different user accounts thanks to Fast User Switching

Because the other Apple applications are critical to the functionality of the operating system as a whole, most of the applications that Apple provides with Panther have also had a makeover and some new ones have even been created. Specific benefits of these include

  •   The introduction of Font Book, which is a font management application that can take the place of third-party tools for most users.
  •   Even more reasons to use Mail, which is Apple's aptly named e-mail client (see Technique 33).
  •   A speedier and more useful version of Preview, which is Mac OS X's default viewer for PDF documents and images. More importantly, Preview now supports many common PDF features like hyperlinks, bookmarks, and full-text searching.
  •   Modest changes to Address Book (personal information management software), giving it even more cause to be a regular resource for every Mac user.
  •   A new version of the popular iChat messenger service, iChat AV. You can now save oodles of time and money doing video or audio conferencing with your computer and a FireWire-enabled video camera. (This application is available to Jaguar users for $29.95.)
  •   The advent of Xcode, which is a tool for creating applications. Xcode is a sophisticated new version of Project Builder, which developers will love and the general public can safely ignore. (This application is available to Jaguar users at no cost.)

All these improvements, new applications, and features can be yours for the low, low cost of ... okay, the not-so-low cost of $129. But that's a beauty of an operating system.

The price of Panther ($129) is the same whether you're upgrading from Jaguar or buying a version of OS X for the first time.

To further convince you, consider that an overriding benefit of installing Panther is that you'll be using the most current version of Apple's operating system. This means that you can take advantage of all of Apple's future development of applications and patches, which will be designed with Panther in mind.

If you own more than one Macintosh, consider the Family Pack version of Panther, which gives you license to install the OS on up to five machines for the bargain price of $199. If time truly is money, this tip alone could save you hours!

Choosing an Installation Method

If you just purchased a brand new Mac, making yourself the envy of the neighborhood, you should be sitting there with a fresh copy of Panther purring away. In that case, you can skip ahead a bit to the section "Working with Setup Assistant" to see how to whip through the Setup Assistant. If you don't have Panther installed yet but are the proud owner of some shiny new installation discs, it's time to put them to use.

Before you begin, take a minute to think about what type of installation you want. You have three options:

  •   Upgrade a previous version of Mac OS X: Upgrading is the easiest and least time-consuming option to use - in the short run, that is. One drawback, however, to upgrading an existing OS is that your hard disk will be become bloated with deadwood files. The resulting OS can be a little buggy, inheriting problems from its predecessor.

If you want to install Panther and get on with your life with a minimum of fuss, choose the upgrade option.

  •   Erase and Install: This option is the most taxing and time-consuming (and drastic) of the three. On the bright side, you do end up with an untouched hard drive and a brand spankin' new OS. On the other hand, you wipe out all your files and applications in the process.

Absolutely, positively do not use the Erase and Install option unless you've got multiple backups of all your files, drivers, and software. This option does exactly what it says: erases the contents of your entire hard drive.

  •   Archive and Install: This happy medium between your other two install choices creates a new system folder with new copies of all the OS stuff, but it also allows you to maintain all the user files and non-Apple applications. Although Apple doesn't promote this feature as the recommended type of installation, we're quite fond of it ourselves. It gives you the benefit of a clean system folder (without the deadwood created by an upgrade) without the serious drawback of having to reinstall all your applications and files.

The Archive and Install option throws all the existing system files and Apple applications in a folder called Previous Systems. After you're convinced that no valuable information has been overwritten by the recent installation, delete this folder to clear up space on your hard drive.

Managing Your Disk Drives

Along with deciding what type of installation you want to perform, another topic worth your consideration before you install Panther is the formatting and partitioning of your hard drive (or drives). To clarify:

  •   Formatting a disk drive is the process of erasing its contents and telling the blank drive how to structure the files stored on it.
  •   Partitioning a disk drive is the process of breaking a single drive into multiple volumes. Your computer still has the same number of physical hard drives, but the operating system behaves as if there were more. (Each volume appears as a separate drive in Finder and other software.)

Practically anything you do with the Disk Utility application requires erasing your entire hard drive. Although Disk Utility warns you before it does anything so drastic, we'd advise you not to use the application unless you've first backed up everything that you need.

Both of these tasks are accomplished by using the Disk Utility application (see Figure 1-1), which can be found in the Utilities folder and on the first Panther installation disc. If you have multiple drives or volumes, Disk Utility can format or partition any volume except for the one on which it resides (because it can't erase itself). If you want to format or partition the drive that contains Disk Utility, you need to use the installation discs.

If you plan either an Upgrade or an Archive and Install installation, do not reformat or partition your hard drive because there will be nothing to upgrade or archive. If you're performing an Erase and Install, the installer can handle basic formatting (but not partitioning) for you.

1. Start your computer with the first Panther installation disc.

2. At the first screen that appears (for language selection), select Open Disk Utility from the Installer menu (see Figure 1-2).

3. Follow the appropriate steps in one of the next two sections to either format or partition your drives and volumes.

Formatting a volume

To format a volume with Disk Utility:

1. Click the volume icon in the left column. (A disk's volumes appear under the disk's icon.)

2. Click Erase.

3. Select a Volume Format.

The Volume Formats are

* Mac OS Extended

This used to be the default format and is the safest choice.

* Mac OS Extended (Journaled)

Journaling support has just recently been added by Apple. You don't really need to understand the details of what it does to appreciate that it allows you to more accurately recover your computer in the event of a disaster. Feel free to use this format because Apple now uses it as the default.

* UFS (Unix File System)

If you choose to format with UFS, you render the hard drive unrecognizable by some operating systems (in particular, OS 9). For this reason, we'd advise you to stay away from it.

4. Enter the volume's name (see Figure 1-3) in the Name box.

5. Click Erase to reformat the volume.

When reformatting a hard drive, you can choose to Zero All Data (available by clicking the Options button). Doing so will exponentially increase how long it takes to reformat the drive, but it's the best way to both clean the drive and ensure that it's working properly.

Partitioning a disk drive

To partition a disk drive into multiple volumes:

1. Click the drive's icon in the left column. The drive will have a strange name consisting of the size and model of the device.

2. Click the Partition tab.

3. Select a scheme from the Volume Scheme dropdown menu (see Figure 1-4).

A volume's scheme refers to how many partitions you want to create. Hard drives 20GB or larger can be nicely divided into two partitions.

4. One at a time, select every partition in the volume scheme window (named Untitled 1 and Untitled 2 in Figure 1-4). Type a name in the Name box and select a format type in the Format drop-down list for each.

Disk Utility automatically partitions a disk into equally sized volumes. You can override this by clicking and dragging the bar that separates the volumes in the scheme window.

5. Click the Partition button to enact the changes.

Installing Panther

The installation process is fairly obvious, particularly after you understand the options, but we'll run through the steps and highlight a few important considerations nonetheless. To install Panther:

1. Update your computer's firmware.

Apple always recommends that you do this, pointing you to downloads. Once there, click your computer model under Updates by Product in the right-hand column. This will take you to a results page where you probably won't find an update for your firmware. We're not suggesting that you skip this step, but don't be surprised if it's less than fruitful.

2. Insert the first Panther disc into the disc drive (make sure that you have all three CDs), double-click the Install Mac OS X icon, click Restart (see Figure 1-5), and wait for your Mac to reboot.

You can also begin installing Panther by holding down the C key while your computer starts up or selecting Mac OS X Install Disc 1 in the Startup Disk preferences panel (assuming the CD is in the CD drive).

3. Select the language that you want to use and then click Continue.

4. Read through the introductory text on the first two pages, clicking Continue to go on.

The information presented on the second page is duplicated in the Read Before You Install PDF file found on the first installation disc. It mostly covers Panther's compatibility issues.

5. Accept the license agreement by clicking Continue in the main window and then Agree on the sheet that appears from the top of the window.

You don't have to accept the license agreement - unless you want to install Panther, that is. If you click Disagree, you exit the installer and are returned to your normal operating system world.


Excerpted from Mac OS X Panther Timesaving Techniques For Dummies by Larry Ullman Marc Liyanage Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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