All items tagged with "Tips & Tricks"

Become a Safari search master with quick iOS tip

Searching within Safari pages is pretty easy, but well-hidden. Photo: Rob LeFebvre

Searching within Safari pages is pretty easy, but well-hidden. Photo: Rob LeFebvre

On the Mac, it’s super-easy to search for a word or phrase within the currently loaded page. You simply hit Command-F on your keyboard and Safari, Chrome or any other web browser will open up a little field to type your search terms into.

But what about when you’re using mobile Safari on your iPhone or iPad? How do you find a specific word or phrase there?

It’s pretty simple, but not super-intuitive. Here’s our recipe for finding search terms on your iPhone’s version of Safari.

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Top 10 keyboard shortcuts every Mac user should know

Using these simple keyboard tricks will make your life so much better. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Using these simple keyboard tricks will make your life so much better. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Mastering a few crucial Mac keyboard shortcuts will make using your Apple computer easier and much more efficient. Cutting your reliance on your mouse will help you work more quickly, and you’ll undoubtedly impress your family, friends and co-workers to no end. You might end up becoming the go-to Mac person in your office, and we all know how wonderful that will be.

Here are the top 10 Mac keyboard shortcut tricks you really need to memorize right now, whether you’re a Mac newbie or a veteran user who still uses the mouse for everything out of habit.

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How to avoid going full screen in OS X Yosemite

You're no longer a slave to this full screen window behavior. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

You’re no longer a slave to this full screen window behavior. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

As of OS X Yosemite, the little green button in the upper left-hand corner of all your apps and windows has recently undergone a change in function. Instead of maximizing or re-sizing the windows, as in all previous versions of OS X, now the green button will take your window or app full screen.

If you’re tired of going full screen every time you click the green button, here’s how to avoid the screen take over.

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Quick tip will speed Mac data recovery and save you from heartache

Passwords can lock you out, too. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

Passwords can lock you out, too. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

Let me save you a huge headache — don’t set an EFI password on your Mac unless you have the original receipt for that machine.

If you buy your Mac off Craigslist, like I did, and your daughter writes half a novel for her high school class but never backs it up elsewhere (note – always back up your stuff!), and then her MacBook Air suddenly won’t boot up, the EFI password the previous owner put on the laptop will prevent you or Apple from accessing the hard drive or ever using the computer again.

Hypothetically, of course.

If you don’t want to have to tell your daughter she loses her computer and will need to wait a week while you find a way to connect her SSD to another Mac and find her files, disable that EFI password now.

Here’s how.

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How to use a PS4 controller with your Mac

Get your game on -- wirelessly -- with a PS4 controller and your Mac. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

Get your game on — wirelessly — with a PS4 controller and your Mac. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

Now just might be the best time ever to be a Mac gamer, as a ton of big titles for PC and console are also available for Apple computers via the Mac App Store, Steam or GoG.com. It’s a golden era of cross-platform goodness, and it’s easier than ever to find a game you’ll love on the Mac.

Some of today’s hot titles demand a good controller, though. One of the best is Sony’s DualShock 4 controller (the same one that comes with the PlayStation 4). If you’ve got one, you’ve got easy access to a fantastic, ergonomic and just plain great gaming controller that will work with your Mac, requiring very little setup to make it happen.

Here’s our recipe for great wireless Mac gaming.

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How to get all the awesome extra sounds for GarageBand 10

All you need to make some sick beats. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

All you need to make some sick beats. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

If you dig creating fresh beats and smooth grooves on your Mac, you’ll likely love GarageBand. It’s a fantastic bit of musical creation kit for anyone, regardless of native ability or experience. You can use loops to make new songs, play your own music with MIDI keyboards–even make your own ringtones for your iPhone. It’s quite versatile.

When you download GarageBand from the Mac App Store, you’ll immediately get 50 sounds, 500 loops, 1 drummer, and 2 basic lessons for guitar and piano. Likely, though, you want the full package, which is available as a free download that expands the content to 200 sounds, 2,000 loops, 15 drummers, and 40 basic lessons for guitar and piano.

Here’s how to get it.

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How to mark all iMessages as read on your iPhone

Too many unread iMessages? Try this simple trick. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Too many unread iMessages? Try this simple trick. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

If you’re like me, you’ve got a ton of unread iMessages on your iPhone and tapping through them all just to get rid of your app badge anxiety seems like a bit too much effort.

Apple has your back, though, with a nicely designed way to mark all your iMessages as read. It might not be apparent at first glance where to find this magic trick. Here’s how.

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How to find your iPhone’s last location even after the battery dies

Lost that iPhone again, huh? Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Lost that iPhone again, huh? Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Picture this: You’ve lost your iPhone somewhere, but it’s run out of juice and it’s not ringing or vibrating when you call it.

You might think you’re out of luck, but there’s one function you can enable (or disable if you’re into privacy) that will keep track of your iPhone’s last location, even when the battery’s dead.

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Siri lets you relive your audio misadventures

Want to see all the songs you've found via Siri or iTunes Radio? Photo: Buster Hein/Cult of Mac

Want to see all the songs you’ve found via Siri or iTunes Radio? Photo: Buster Hein/Cult of Mac


iOS 8 includes Shazam — a magical technology that gives your iPhone the power to listen to a song and tell you what it is. In the car, at a movie theater, or even at a crowded bar, you can just ask Siri, “What song is playing?” or hold your home button for a few seconds, and your iPhone will use Shazam tech to tell you exactly what song is in your environment. You can also (surprise) buy the song you just recognized via a little button in the results screen.

But what if you want to buy it later? Or remember what song was playing at the bar last night when that cute girl gave you her number? You can easily do just that with a quick trip to iTunes on your iPhone.

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How to enable that sexy new iTunes Notification Center widget

Quicker than switching to iTunes, for sure. Screengrab: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

Quicker than switching to iTunes, for sure. Screengrab: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

The advent of iTunes 12.1 gave us a sweet new widget that lets you control iTunes from the Notification Center’s Today section, without ever having to switch to the app itself. You can even favorite songs and buy currently playing tracks if you’re listening to iTunes Radio.

Unfortunately, this widget doesn’t seem to appear by default. To enable it, you need to drop into System Preferences. Here’s how to get it up and running.

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