All items tagged with "OS X tips"

Use Preview To Protect Your PDFs With Encryption [OS X Tips]

password protected

Every once in a while, you might want to password protect a PDF file with encryption. While there are several nice third-party apps that will do the trick, the simplest way to do this is with the built-in image and PDF viewer, Preview.

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Make The Most Of Your Terminal History With A Bang [OS X Tips]

history

If you’ve spent enough time messing around in Terminal, you’ll know one thing for sure: re-typing the stuff you’ve laboriously typed in with only minor differences is tedious. And it happens more often than we’d like.

The Terminal does, however, keep a history of all the commands you’ve typed into it. To see this in action, you can cycle through the last few commands you’ve typed in, simply hit the arrow keys up or down when in Terminal.

There are a few more less intuitive commands to make the best use of your Terminal history, however.

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Slow Down That Window Minimize Animation In Mavericks [OS X Tips]

Animate Dock Minimize

So, here’s a weird one–have you ever wanted to watch a window animate itself really slowly as you minimize it to the Dock? No?

Well, let’s assume you did for some reason. How would you go about it?

In Mavericks, anyway, it’s a trivial thing, and it produces a fun effect: your window will minimize to the Dock super slowly, even slower than in the animated image above.

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Add Or Delete Spaces In Mavericks [OS X Tips]

add or delete Spaces

If you’ve been using OS X for any length of time now, you know the special joy of desktop “spaces,” what Apple calls its virtual desktop system. You can switch between them by hitting Command-Arrow (right or left) on your keyboard, or you can activate Spaces with the F3 key on most modern Macs. You can also reorder these Spaces around fairly easily.

But did you know you could add more Spaces? Delete the ones you have?

Well, you can, and it’s pretty simple.

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Never Forget Cinco De Mayo Again – Add Holidays To Your Mac’s Calendar [OS X Tips]

Holidays Calendar

Quick – when is Earth Day this year? How about Saint Patrick’s Day? Not sure?

Then why not enable US Holidays in your Calendar app, right on your very own Mac? It’s quick, simple, and will make sure you never forget to wear green on March 17, or recycle on April 22.

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Handy Keyboard Shortcuts To Shut Down Or Sleep Your Mac [OS X Tips]

Mac OS X Keyboard

Back in the day, I used to care for a couple of labs full of Macs. Invariably, at the end of the day, I’d find myself in the lab, shutting them all down for the night. I’d run up and down the rows of eMacs or whatever they were at the time, and hit the power button, then click on the Shut Down button. Or, if I was feeling frisky, I’d just hold down the power button until they shut off.

This took some time, needless to say. I wish I’d known of these useful keyboard commands to shut down or sleep the Macs, saving myself several minutes each day.

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Use Recordit To Create A Quick Screencast For Free [OS X Tips]

Recordit Screencast

Have you ever wanted to create a quick video of yourself doing something interesting on your Mac? Need to show someone in another department how you manage your files, or the tagging system you employ using Mavericks?

You can create a screencast with many third-party tools, some of them quite robust and expensive, but there’s a new one that’s both free and easy to use.

It’s called Recordit, and the developers sent along a version for us to try out here at Cult of Mac Tips HQ, and we’re pretty impressed. Recordit allows anyone to create a quick recording (up to five minutes) of any portion of their screen and share it via a URL.

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How To Add Images And Video To Keychain Secure Notes

Secure Notes with Keychain

One of the lesser known functions of the Keychain on OS X is its ability to add Secure Notes, notes that require you to enter your Keychain login password to view them.

There are a ton of third-party apps out there that allow you to password protect your notes, but Keychain is built right in to Mac OS X, and has been for a while; it’s a pretty nifty thing to have when you need it.

Better yet? The current version of Keychain will let you put images and video into your notes, making it a snap to secure your media files to your password.

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Block iMessage Senders On Your Mac [OS X Tips]

Messages Prefs

Sometimes, you might have a certain someone who gets a little, shall we say, overzealous in trying to message you. Since your iPhone and Mac can both receive iMessages, you might get interrupted by the flurry of messages from this certain contact.

While you can block iMessage senders on your iPhone or iPad, it hasn’t been possible in Mac OS X Mavericks until the latest update to 10.9.2, available through the Software Update panel of the Mac App Store.

Now, though, you can block and unblock any contact in your Contacts app with aplomb, right from your Mac.

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How To Cut Or Copy Text In Quick Look [OS X Tips]

text selection

Quick Look is a fantastic bit of tech, letting you view any file up close and personal with a quick tap on the Spacebar. It works in the Finder, in Open and Save dialogs, and across a ton of other apps like iPhoto.

It’s basically the best new thing ever.

There are times, though, that I forget I’m previewing a file with Quick Look and I head up to the text in a document to copy and paste it elsewhere, only to be rebuffed. You just can’t do this.

Unless, of course, you enable this feature using Terminal.

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