Mac|Life - How-Tos http://www.maclife.com/articles/6/feed en Ask: Sharing Monitors between Computers http://www.maclife.com/article/howtos/ask_sharing_monitors_between_computers <!--paging_filter--><p>Got an Apple, Mac, or iOS tech question? Here's the answer. In this edition of Ask, we'll explain what to do when you're having trouble sharing monitors between your Mac and another computer.</p><h3>Question</h3><p>I have two computers and two monitors: a Mac Pro (running Mavericks) with a 27-inch Dell monitor connected using DisplayPort, and a Windows 8 PC with another Dell monitor that’s shared between the PC and the Mac Pro over DVI on the PC. Sometimes I want to use both monitors on the Mac, but if I unplug the monitor from the PC and connect it to the Mac Pro, the Mac recognises the new display, but the screen stays black. After a few seconds the monitor goes into standby. How do I fix this?</p><h3>Answer</h3><p>OS X sends a query to the monitor through the video cable when the Mac first boots or wakes from sleep, when you plug in the Mac end of the video cable, and when you hold å in Display Preferences and click the “Detect Displays” button.&nbsp;</p><p>If the monitor doesn’t answer with its display ID at any of these points, the Mac will conclude that there isn’t anything at the other end of the cable and will stop sending video data through it. The monitor, in turn, will drop to standby as soon as it goes a few seconds without receiving a video signal.</p><p><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/ask_monitors.png" width="620" height="453" /><br /><strong><span style="font-size: x-small;">The Detect Displays button can force a stubborn monitor to notice you.</span></strong></p><p>It may be that your monitor isn’t responding because it’s only listening to the PC through the DVI port at the time and doesn’t switch over immediately. You could try using the Detect Displays button on the Mac to send a few extra ID queries down the cable and see if the monitor catches any of them. If that doesn’t work, try cycling the power on the monitor first, before you plug it into the Mac. Even if this works, however, it’s a little inconvenient to have to turn the monitor off and on again every time you switch computers.&nbsp;</p><p>However there is a glimmer of hope. There are a few monitor detection bugs in Mavericks that Apple is aware of. If you upgrade to Yosemite, there is a chance that Apple has already fixed this issue in the display driver. The only way to be sure is to actually try it with your specific Dell monitors and your PC.</p><p>Got an Apple tech question? Email <a href="mailto:ask@maclife.com" target="_blank">ask@maclife.com</a>.</p> http://www.maclife.com/article/howtos/ask_sharing_monitors_between_computers#comments Ask Columns Dell Monitors Sharing Tips tricks windows Mac How-Tos Fri, 27 Feb 2015 19:22:19 +0000 MacLife Staff 21348 at http://www.maclife.com How to Master iCloud Drive http://www.maclife.com/article/howtos/how-master-access-icloud-drive-mac-ios <!--paging_filter--><p><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/icloud_drive_620.png" width="620" height="324" /></p><p>You might say that iCloud Drive was long overdue. When iCloud was introduced, many people were disappointed that it didn’t include a regular file repository that could be accessed from the Finder. You could sync contacts, calendars, and bookmarks through it, but you couldn’t drop files onto it manually. With iCloud Drive, however, you can.&nbsp;</p><p>It’s also at the heart of Handoff, Apple’s recently introduced tech for starting a document on one device and then picking up where you left off on another. You’ll need OS X Yosemite to access iCloud Drive (and be running iOS 8 if you want to use compatible apps, such as Apple’s iWork suite and a growing selection of third-party apps that will surely expand moving forward).&nbsp;</p><p><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/iclouddrive_macmain.png" width="620" height="347" /><br /><strong><span style="font-size: x-small;">In addition to the iWork suite, you can store documents from many third-party apps in iCloud Drive.</span></strong></p><p>Signing into iCloud on your Mac running OS X Yosemite lets you switch on iCloud Drive (go to System Preferences &gt; iCloud), after which it will become available as a shortcut both in the sidebar of any Finder window and in the Go menu from the Finder. Select it, and your iCloud Drive folder appears in a Finder window as any other folder would, though with a unique design. You can then drag and drop anything from your Mac onto the drive and it will upload to the cloud.&nbsp;</p><p>For small documents this will take a matter of seconds, but for bigger items it will depend on your connection speed. You also only get 5GB of space for free; while this is fine for uploading some files, if you’re backing up your iOS device too, those backups may already be using most of that space. You can upgrade for a modest monthly fee of $0.99 to 20GB of storage, though 200GB ($3.99/mo), 500GB ($9.99/mo) or 1TB ($19.99/mo) options are available — and you can downgrade, too, if you change your mind.&nbsp;</p><p><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/iclouddrive_gomenu.png" width="620" height="357" /><br /><strong><span style="font-size: x-small;">In Finder, you can open iCloud Drive with the keyboard shortcut of Command + Shift + I.</span></strong></p><h3>Not Just for Storing</h3><p>As well as simple file storage, the space on your iCloud Drive can be used for other things when you are running the latest version of OS X. Perhaps the most useful is a new feature called Mail Drop, where you’ll be able to send Mail attachments much larger than those allowed by any email provider directly from inside Mail.&nbsp;</p><p>Attach a file, and, if it’s large, Mail will upload it to iCloud and instead of sending the whole message through your email service, the attachment gets uploaded to your iCloud Drive. If the recipient is also using Mail they see an inline copy of the file and can click to download it. Users of other mail programs will see a link to enable them to do the same.&nbsp;</p><p>Attachments of up to 5GB are supported, though you’ll be waiting a while for anything that big to upload over a home broadband connection. You’ve been able to use other upload services for this before now, but it’s now integrated into Mail, removing several steps.</p><h3>Cutting out the Middleman</h3><p>On a device running iOS 8 you can also use iCloud Drive, but there’s no dedicated app for exploring its files; instead you have to use an app that’s been updated to be able to read and save files directly into iCloud Drive. This includes Apple’s iWork suite, of course, and it’s been made easier for third-party app developers to incorporate the functionality, so expect to see it coming to more apps soon. The reason this updating is necessary is because iCloud Drive works differently to the old iCloud “documents in the cloud” model. Previously, apps could still use iCloud to save their documents across device, but you couldn’t browse them in other apps — it was all very locked away. iCloud Drive is more flexible, letting you browse for, say a text file that’s been saved in TextEdit’s iCloud Drive folder to open in Pages. It’s easy to do this on iOS or Mac.</p><p>You can also easily share a file or photo as a link to a colleague or friend by tapping on Share and selecting Share Link via iCloud, or alternatively, send it direct by opting for Send a Copy.</p><p>Unfortunately, some apps aren’t suited to cloud operation — mainly those that deal with large files like video. But many are (since they deal with much smaller files), and even pictures are pretty easy to upload and download depending on the speed of your internet connection.&nbsp;</p><h3>Sorting and Access</h3><p>Viewed on a computer, your iCloud Drive sorts documents into folders by type: Numbers documents, Keynote documents, and so on, and also allows regular arbitrary file storage, though this means you’ll have to know where you put the files to find them in iOS apps. You can also access your drive from a web browser at icloud.com and open and edit iWork documents, as well as upload and download other files.</p><p><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/iclouddrive_web.png" width="620" height="202" /><br /><strong><span style="font-size: x-small;">You can access iCloud Drive on the web so you can reach your files no matter where you are or what device you're using.</span></strong></p><p>&nbsp;</p><h3>How to Get a File from Mac to iOS via iCloud Drive</h3><p><strong>1. Enable iCloud Drive on your Mac</strong></p><p><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/iclouddrive_transfer1.png" width="620" height="339" /></p><p>In Yosemite, go into System Preferences &gt; iCloud and switch on iCloud Drive from the list of available items. Sign in with your Apple ID. From the Go menu or from any Finder window sidebar, click on iCloud Drive to view the files stored on it.</p><p><strong>2. Drag and Drop</strong></p><p><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/iclouddrive_transfer2.png" width="620" height="364" /></p><p>Drag and drop a file or folder from your Mac into the iCloud Drive window and it will be uploaded to the cloud. This will be quick for smaller items, but could take longer for larger ones. Organize things into folders (such as pictures, movies, sounds and so on).</p><p><strong>3. Access in iOS</strong></p><p><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/iclouddrive_transfer3.png" width="620" height="284" /></p><p>On your iOS 8 device, find an app that’s able to use iCloud Drive (like Numbers, Pages, or Keynote). Open a document from iCloud and you should be able to pull any compatible file from the cloud and open it on your device. More apps will support this feature as time goes on.</p> http://www.maclife.com/article/howtos/how-master-access-icloud-drive-mac-ios#comments cloud data storage Handoff iCloud iCloud Drive iOS 8 synching yosemite Features iPad iPhone iPod Mac How-Tos Thu, 26 Feb 2015 00:00:51 +0000 Hollin Jones 21341 at http://www.maclife.com How to Delete Photos, Messages, and Songs on iPhone http://www.maclife.com/article/howtos/how_delete_photos_messages_and_songs_iphone <!--paging_filter--><p>If you have an 8GB or 16GB iPhone, then you probably think about having enough space on your device more than you'd like. Fortunately, iOS 8 is really great about helping you keep your device clean and free from unwanted data. Instead of packing your device to the brim, use these tips on how to clean up your photos, messages, and songs in iOS.</p><h3>Clean Up Photos</h3><p>We take lots of photos on our devices. The iPhone isn't the most popular camera on Flickr for just any old reason: It takes great photos, and the software to manage the photos is great as well. However, do you really need to have every photo of your cat? Probably not.<br /><br />Once a week while you're sitting on a break, take the time to keep your photos clean and your device running snappy by doing the following to remove old or unwanted photos from the Photos app:</p><p><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u12635/delete_1.jpg"><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/delete_1.jpg" width="300" height="532" class="thickbox" /></a></p><ol><li>Open the Photos app.</li><li>Select the Photos tab at the bottom, then zoom all the way into the collections so that you can see your most recent photos. Alternatively, select Albums &gt; Camera Roll.</li><li>Tap the "Select" button in the top, right-hand corner of the screen.</li><li>Select all of the photos you no longer want, then tap the Trash icon.</li></ol><p>It's that easy, and you can keep your device free of old photos.</p><p>If you want to go nuclear and erase all the photos on your iPhone, you can do that, too, but unfortunately there's no convenient way to do so using only your iPhone. However, it can be done if you connect your phone to a Mac. Once it's plugged in, open the Image Capture application, click on a photo, choose Select All from the Edit menu (or press Command + A) to highlight all your photos, and press the button at the bottom of the window featuring the red circle with a line through it. If you choose Delete when the dialogue pops up, you'll permanently erase all your photos.</p><h3>Clean Up Messages</h3><p>iOS 8 includes a super-easy way to ensure that old messages don't clog your device's storage. Perform the following steps to have iOS automatically delete old messages after they're no longer needed:</p><p><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u12635/delete_2_0.png"><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/delete_2_0.png" width="300" height="532" class="thickbox" /></a></p><ol><li>Open Settings.</li><li>Go to Messages.</li><li>Scroll down to the "Message History" section.</li><li>Select how long you want to keep your messages: 30 days, 1 year, or Forever</li></ol><p>By default, Forever is selected, and this means that your SMS and iMessages are never deleted. If you select 30 days or 1 year, messages will be removed after that period of time from your device, keeping the message history sparkling clean for your enjoyment.</p><p>But what if you want to get rid of extraneous messages right now? You can do that, too. Go to your messages, then tap on whatever conversation you want to delete mesages from. Now, tap and hold on any message for a second, and a bubble will pop up with the words "Copy" and "More." Select "More," then check any messages you want to be rid of and tap the trashcan to delete them, or tap the Delete All button in the upper-left corner to erase the entire conversation.</p><p><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/delete_4.png" width="300" height="533" class="thickbox" /></p><h3>Clean Up Your Music</h3><p>We've all been there: You want to install the latest iOS update, but you don't have quite enough space. A simple solution could be to delete your old songs. You don't need that copy of "Ice Ice Baby" any more, anyway. It's not the 1990s, and it was never that great of a song to begin with.<br /><br />When you're tired of your tunes, or are looking to clear up some storage, you can use these steps to clean up your songs:</p><p><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u12635/delete_3_0.png"><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/delete_3_0.png" width="300" height="532" class="thickbox" /></a></p><ol><li>Navigate to Settings &gt; General &gt; Usage &gt; Manage Storage (under the Storage section, not under the iCloud section).</li><li>After the storage list has populated, select the Music app from the list.</li><li>A list of all your songs will be presented. Select the "Edit" button to easily select multiple tunes and remove them from the device.</li></ol><p>Note: Songs originally purchased through iTunes or synched via iTunes Match can be redownloaded at any time. Also, this will not remove songs from your iTunes in the Cloud library — only songs that are stored locally.</p> http://www.maclife.com/article/howtos/how_delete_photos_messages_and_songs_iphone#comments delete Free How to iMessages messages Music Photos Photos app remove sms Songs Storage text messages updates iPhone How-Tos Tue, 24 Feb 2015 22:34:25 +0000 Cory Bohon 21335 at http://www.maclife.com Easy Mac Hacks: Make the Dock Appear Faster http://www.maclife.com/article/howtos/easy_mac_hacks_make_dock_appear_faster <!--paging_filter--><p><em><img src="/files/u12635/easy_mac_hacks_icon_flat_36.png" width="200" height="200" class="graphic-right" />Every Monday we show you how to do something quick and cool using with Mac OS X. Sometimes it's a tutorial on a lesser-known feature, other times it's a trick that uses built-in functionality such as Terminal — either way, these simple tips can make life better and easier, and they don’t require any special knowledge. All you need to do is follow the instructions!<br /></em><br />By default, the Dock in OS X has a slight delay when you mouse over it and have "Automatically Hide and Show Dock" enabled. It can be a little annoying if you're in a hurry, but you can customize the speed at which it appears with this little hack — you can even make it show up almost instantly. Continue reading and we'll show you how this can be used to customize the autohide delay on your Dock.</p><p><br /><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u12635/dock_hide.png"><img src="/files/u12635/dock_hide.png" width="620" height="435" class="thickbox" /></a><br />To begin, open the Terminal (located in /Applications/Utilities), and then type the following command in to the Terminal, followed by the return key:</p><pre>defaults write com.apple.dock autohide-delay -float 0</pre><p>Next you'll need to restart the Dock to see the change in effect. You can log out of your user account in OS X to see the change, or you can type the following command into the Terminal:</p><pre>killall Dock</pre><p>This will restart the Dock, and you'll immediately notice that when you have the Dock set to "Automatically Hide and Show the Dock," the appearance will be near-instant.<br /><br />If you want to return to the standard hide/show effect, then you can revert back to the default setting by typing into the Terminal:</p><pre>defaults delete com.apple.dock autohide-delay</pre><p>Once again, you'll need to restart the Dock (or log out of your OS X user account and back in) with:</p><pre>killall Dock</pre><p>Note: Using this trick, you can also increase the autohide delay. To do so, replace the 0 in the first command with a larger number; this is great for when you want to keep the Dock from showing immediately when moving your mouse cursor towards the bottom of the screen.</p> http://www.maclife.com/article/howtos/easy_mac_hacks_make_dock_appear_faster#comments Columns delay dock Easy Mac Hacks finder How to Mac Mac How-Tos Mon, 23 Feb 2015 19:40:13 +0000 Cory Bohon 21254 at http://www.maclife.com Ask: How to Stop iTunes from Crashing http://www.maclife.com/article/howtos/ask-how-stop-itunes-crashing <!--paging_filter--><p>Got an Apple, Mac, or iOS tech question? We've got the answer. This time in Ask, we'll let you know what to do if iTunes on your Mac keeps crashing.</p><h3>Question</h3><p>I’m struggling with iTunes 11.3; it crashes back to the desktop within a minute of opening up. It makes no difference whether I'm playing a song or leaving it idle — the result’s the same. I’ve tried redownloading iTunes several times, but this hasn’t helped. What can I do?</p><h3>Answer</h3><p>Sudden and catastrophic failings like this are normally a result of the iTunes library file getting corrupted. iTunes maintains the library in two files: “iTunes library.itl” and “iTunes library.xml”, both in ~/Music/iTunes. The XML file is there as a sort of reference point and to allow compatibility with other applications, but the ITL is the one that iTunes actually uses internally, and this is the one that can get corrupted. To force iTunes to rebuild this file, you need to delete the ITL file and then move (not copy) the XML file to the desktop.</p><p><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/ask_ituneslibrary.png" width="620" height="402" /><br /><strong><span style="font-size: x-small;">iTunes keeps your library data in two different places, which is handy.</span></strong></p><p>Now start iTunes and choose File &gt; Add to Library. Select the XML file on the desktop. iTunes will use this to create new XML and ITL files in your iTunes folder — hopefully this time without the corruption. It’s a good idea to disconnect from the internet while you are doing this because otherwise your podcasts can go crazy trying to download all the episodes you already have. Bear in mind that there are some preferences that aren’t in the XML file, such as the sync settings for your iOS devices, which you’ll have to redo manually.</p><p>Got an Apple tech question? Email <a href="mailto:ask@maclife.com" target="_blank">ask@maclife.com</a>.</p> http://www.maclife.com/article/howtos/ask-how-stop-itunes-crashing#comments Ask crashing iTunes iTunes library Tips tricks Mac How-Tos Fri, 20 Feb 2015 18:27:32 +0000 MacLife Staff 21320 at http://www.maclife.com iPhone Basics for Beginners: Top 10 Tips http://www.maclife.com/article/howtos/iphone-basics-beginners-top-tips <!--paging_filter--> http://www.maclife.com/article/howtos/iphone-basics-beginners-top-tips#comments Gallery basics beginners guide iOS newcomers Tips tricks iPhone How-Tos Thu, 19 Feb 2015 00:04:11 +0000 Michael Simon 21315 at http://www.maclife.com How to Enhance Finder: Restore Labels, New Features & More! http://www.maclife.com/article/howtos/how-enhance-osx-finder-restore-labels-new-features-more <!--paging_filter--><p>Finder has changed a lot over the years and, while we’re big fans of the tabbed windows in OS X Mavericks and Yosemite, we were disappointed when old-style colored labels vanished, and also when the sidebar icons became depressingly monochrome. But where Apple no longer provides, enterprising third-party developers are often there to fill the void. One such example is XtraFinder, a free app (although you can donate to show support) that’s available from <a href="http://www.trankynam.com/xtrafinder" target="_blank">trankynam.com/xtrafinder</a>. Once installed, the app enables you to add all kinds of features to Finder, significantly powering up OS X’s file manager.</p><p>The app’s preferences are divided into four groups. Tabs might seem superfluous — the section really exists due to XtraFinder pre-dating OS X Mavericks — but there are more options here than Apple provides, including a highly useful dual-pane view. Features provides a range of new toys to play with, Appearance deftly deals with both color issues mentioned earlier, and Add Items to Finder &nbsp;Menus can significantly expand the Finder contextual menu.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><h3>Quick Look at XtraFinder</h3><p><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/xtra_anno.png" width="620" height="388" /></p><p><strong>A. Extra Color</strong></p><p>XtraFinder can bring a lot of OS X’s color back, in Finder sidebars and labels.</p><p><strong>B. Menu Extra</strong></p><p>The XtraFinder menu extra enables you to rapidly access the application’s preferences and set up dual-window modes. The Tools menu is for restarting Finder/XtraFinder and managing XtraFinder preferences files.</p><p><strong>C. Preferences</strong></p><p>XtraFinder enables you to make all sorts of changes to Finder’s capabilities and menus. When changes are made, you may need to restart XtraFinder.</p><p><strong>D. Shortcuts</strong></p><p>XtraFinder preferences enable you to assign a keyboard shortcut. Click inside the relevant field and press the keys you want; beware of clashes with existing shortcuts, though.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><h3>How to Set up and Use XtraFinder</h3><p><strong>1. Get Started</strong></p><p><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/xtra_1.png" width="620" height="372" /></p><p>Install and launch XtraFinder; select Preferences from the menu bar and click Appearance. Open a Finder window and apply labels to a couple of files. They’re displayed as dots at the right of the Name column. Now for old-style labelling...</p><p><strong>2. Use Legacy Labels</strong></p><p><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/xtra_2.png" width="620" height="244" /></p><p>Check “Legacy label color painting”, and the names of tagged files should be in color. Check “Enabled for Icon View mode” to work in Icon view. You may have to switch to a different view or restart XtraFinder from the menu extra’s Tools menu.</p><p><strong>3. Add More Color</strong></p><p><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/xtra_3.png" width="620" height="310" /></p><p>Labels can be adjusted with tags. The color will represent the most recently added one. Check “Show colorful icons in the sidebar” to color Finder sidebar icons. Try making these larger using Sidebar Icon Size in System Preferences &gt; General.</p><p><strong>4. Set up Tabs</strong></p><p><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/xtra_4.png" width="620" height="242" /></p><p>Finder has tabs, but XtraFinder has extra features. Activate them in Tabs in the app’s preferences; adjust their appearance through Tab style (Chrome tabs are angled, while Opera tabs are straighter) and narrow the space above the tabs if you wish.</p><p><strong>5. Use Dual-Pane View</strong></p><p><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/xtra_5.png" width="620" height="286" /></p><p>Open a Finder window; go to View &gt; Toggle Dual Panel (or press Command + U). The window will clone itself as two joined tabs (with two or more tabs, the focused one joins with the one to its right.) Handy for moving files. Hit Command + U again to separate the tabs.</p><p><strong>6. Add Some Features</strong></p><p><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/xtra_6.png" width="620" height="346" /></p><p>The Features tab adjusts the way Finder works. Tick “Arrange folders on top” and Finder List and Columns views display folders above files (rather than mixing the two). Another useful feature is “Show total size of selected items in Status Bar.”</p><p><strong>7. Power-up Path Bar</strong></p><p><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/xtra_7.png" width="620" height="275" /></p><p>If the Path Bar isn’t visible, go to View &gt; Path Bar. In XtraFinder’s preferences, tick “Click any item in the Path Bar to show contents menu.” Now you can navigate from any folder in the Path Bar; ç-click a folder to open it in a new tab.&nbsp;</p><p><strong>8. Contextual Menu</strong></p><p><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/xtra_8.png" width="620" height="401" /></p><p>Finder’s right-click contextual menu can be added to by selecting items in Add Items to Finder Menus in preferences. If you’d like “Open in New Window” displayed alongside “Open in New Tab” rather than when you hold Option, check that box.</p><p><strong>9. Clean Sweep</strong></p><p><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/xtra_9.png" width="620" height="265" /></p><p>The Tools menu offers Restart Finder (for a clean Finder), Restart XtraFinder (to make new settings active), and Reset Preferences (to revert the app’s settings to their default states). You can also uninstall XtraFinder from here if you decide it's not for you.</p> http://www.maclife.com/article/howtos/how-enhance-osx-finder-restore-labels-new-features-more#comments finder labels Preferences tabs Xtra Mac How-Tos Tue, 17 Feb 2015 23:42:29 +0000 Craig Grannell 21311 at http://www.maclife.com Easy Mac Hacks: Put the OS X Trash on the Desktop http://www.maclife.com/article/howtos/easy_mac_hacks_put_os_x_trash_desktop <!--paging_filter--><p><em><img src="/files/u12635/easy_mac_hacks_icon_flat_37.png" width="200" height="200" class="graphic-right" />Every Monday we show you how to do something quick and cool using with Mac OS X. Sometimes it's a tutorial on a lesser-known feature, other times it's a trick that uses built-in functionality such as Terminal — either way, these simple tips can make life better and easier, and they don’t require any special knowledge. All you need to do is follow the instructions!<br /></em><br />Long ago, before OS X, the Trash icon was located not in the dock, but on the desktop. It's been in the dock now for more than 14 years, but if you're feeling nostalgic for OS 9 or want to move it back to the desktop for easier access, then we'll show you exactly how to do that in this Easy Mac Hacks tip. It might even save you some time dragging stuff around the desktop. Let's get started.</p><h3>Adding the Trash Alias</h3><p>To begin, open the Finder and navigate to your Home Directory. Right-click on any of the folders in your Home Directory and select "Make Alias." We'll be changing the alias later, so it can be of any folder in the top level directory of your Home Directory.</p><p><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u12635/alias_1_0.png"><img src="/files/u12635/alias_1_0.png" width="620" height="407" class="thickbox" /></a><br /><br />Next, move the newly minted alias folder to your Desktop and rename it "Trash" or whatever you wish to call the Trash folder on your Desktop.<br /><br />Next, right-click on the new alias folder on your Desktop and select "Get Info." In the Get Info panel that appears, select the "Select New Original" button, then press Command + Shift + G, and type in the following directory path, replacing "username" below with the shortname of your OS X user account:</p><pre>/Users/username/.Trash</pre><p>Click the "Go" button, and then select the "Open" button in the open panel. This will change the Alias to use the .Trash folder instead of the folder you originally created the alias for.</p><p><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u12635/alias_2_0.png"><img src="/files/u12635/alias_2_0.png" width="620" height="568" class="thickbox" /></a><br /><br />The alias directory will now point to the Trash. Dragging and dropping anything from your Desktop (or other folders) into this alias will immediately place the items into the Trash.</p><h3>Removing the Trash Alias</h3><p>When you no longer want to have this alias directory floating around on your Desktop, you can remove it by simply placing it into the Trash in the Dock. Emptying the Trash will remove the folder for good.</p><h3>Some Caveats</h3><p>There are a few caveats with this method. The first, and possibly the biggest, is that with newer versions of OS X, the alias will not turn into a Trash icon on the Desktop like older versions of OS X. You can find third-party icons that can be used in place of the standard alias folder icon, however.<br /><br />The other caveat is that you cannot drag and drop files from other external drives or volumes into the Desktop Trash icon; instead, it will simply copy the files into the folder instead of moving them to the Trash. You can only trash items from your local volume.</p> http://www.maclife.com/article/howtos/easy_mac_hacks_put_os_x_trash_desktop#comments Columns desktop Easy Mac Hacks How to Mac OS X trash Mac How-Tos Mon, 16 Feb 2015 18:05:00 +0000 Cory Bohon 21255 at http://www.maclife.com Ask: How to Uninstall Mac Apps http://www.maclife.com/article/howtos/ask_how_uninstall_mac_apps <!--paging_filter--><p>Got an Apple, Mac, or iOS tech question? We've got the answer. In this edition of Ask, we'll let you know the best way to completely get rid of apps you no longer want on your Mac.</p><h3>Question</h3><p>I’m amazed when people say that dragging apps into the Trash uninstalls them, because in my experience that’s not always true. I found that when uninstalling Google Chrome by dragging the app to the Trash, all the browsing history, bookmarks, and so on remained on my Mac. Nowadays I always use an app called AppCleaner. What would you say is the best way to uninstall an app?</p><h3>Answer</h3><p>You're right; simply throwing an application in the trash won't get rid of everything associated with it. Those additional files are your personal settings and preferences, and they are excluded from the application package file so each user account can have their own settings, and to make it easier to flush if something gets corrupted. These sorts of files are put in your ~/Library/Application Support and ~/Library/Caches folders. In OS X, we'd suggest simply deleting apps by dragging them to the Trash and then, if you want, deleting personal files associated with them from your own Library folders as an extra step.</p><p><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/ask_appcleaner.png" width="620" height="404" /><br /><strong><span style="font-size: x-small;">AppCleaner from freemacsoft.net does an excellent job of uninstalling apps but, in our opinion, it isn’t really necessary.</span></strong></p><p>Unlike with Windows computers, a dedicated uninstall app probably isn't necessary. (The reason uninstallers are so essential for our PC-using brethren is that library files can be dumped in the Windows folder and only a cryptic reference in the registry tells you where to find them.) There are, of course, a few badly behaved Mac applications out there, but these are definitely outliers. If you have an app you just can't get rid of, it might be worth using something like AppCleaner, but in general it's unnecessary. Admittedly, AppCleaner is donationware, so you don’t have to pay for it, but the office copy sits quite unused so far...</p><p>Got an Apple tech question? Email <a href="mailto:ask@maclife.com" target="_blank">ask@maclife.com</a>.</p> http://www.maclife.com/article/howtos/ask_how_uninstall_mac_apps#comments Apps Ask library Tips trash tricks uninstall Mac How-Tos Fri, 13 Feb 2015 19:06:25 +0000 MacLife Staff 21296 at http://www.maclife.com How to Use Apple Diagnostics to Troubleshoot a Mac http://www.maclife.com/article/howtos/how_use_apple_diagnostics_troubleshoot_mac <!--paging_filter--><p>On very rare occasions, and despite Apple choosing quality components, you may get a boot issue, graphics issue, or any number of other hardware problems during normal usage of your Mac. When crisis strikes, don't go running to the Apple Store — follow these steps to see what might be causing common Mac problems. Even if you don't find the core issue, it'll at least give the Genius Bar folks an idea of what might be wrong.</p><p><img src="/files/u332541/2015/02/applediagnostics_620.png" width="620" height="319" /></p><h3>1. Disconnect Your Accessories</h3><p>In order to rule out any issues with accessories connected to your Mac, you need to first ensure that all external hard drives, microphones, speakers, and other accessories have been disconnected from your computer. Only leave the keyboard, mouse, and monitor connected before proceeding.<br /><br />If you find that your computer functions normally without any accessories connected, then you can attach your accessories (one at a time) back to the computer, until you find the accessory that is the root cause of the issue.</p><h3>2. Run Apple Hardware Test</h3><p><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u12635/diagnostic_1.png"><img src="/files/u12635/diagnostic_1.png" width="620" height="372" class="thickbox" /></a></p><p>Once you've disconnected all accessories, restart your Mac while holding down the "D" key. If you have a newer Mac (manufactured after June 2013), then you will be immediately launched into the new Apple Diagnostic Tool (older Macs will be booted into Apple Hardware Test).<br /><br />For instructions on using the Apple Hardware Test, <a href="http://support.apple.com/en-us/HT201257" target="_blank">click here</a>.<br /><br />While the Apple Diagnostic tests are running, you will be shown a progress bar and a time estimation. Once the test has been completed, then you will see a message that will let you know if any issues were found.</p><p><a class="thickbox" href="/files/u12635/diagnostic_2.png"><img src="/files/u12635/diagnostic_2.png" width="620" height="372" class="thickbox" /></a><br /><br />If issues were found, then you'll want to write down the reference codes that are listed, so that AppleCare or Genius Bar members can quickly evaluate that part of your computer when taking it in for repair.<br /><br />You can find a list of the reference codes that can be generated by AHT or Apple Diagnostics <a href="http://support.apple.com/en-us/HT203747" target="_blank">on the Apple support website</a>. This will give you a better idea of the issues that were found and their meaning.</p><h3>3. Apple Diagnostics Keyboard Shortcuts</h3><p>While booting to or within the Apple Diagnostic tool, there are a few keyboard shortcuts that you can use in order to better navigate the system and re-run tests.</p><ul><li>Option + D - Use this when restarting your Mac to load the Apple Diagnostic test from the Internet</li><li>Command + G - Shows the Getting Started guide</li><li>Command + L - Displays the language selection screen</li><li>Command + R - Re-runs the tests again, often useful to verify a test if issues are found</li><li>S - Shutdown the Mac</li><li>R - Restart the Mac</li></ul><p>Note that when using the shutdown or restart keyboard shortcuts, there could be a slight delay before the command gets executed due to the current tests being run.</p> http://www.maclife.com/article/howtos/how_use_apple_diagnostics_troubleshoot_mac#comments AHT Apple Diagnostics Apple Hardware Test How to Mac problem code troubleshooting Mac How-Tos Thu, 12 Feb 2015 00:11:39 +0000 Cory Bohon 21155 at http://www.maclife.com