Archive (December 2019)

Click on the below secure link to a PDF document to learn some of the almost magical things about Apple's Air Pods...
Lets set the situation. You have a bunch of Tabs setup in Safari, something like this:

Maybe you want to open a new window in Safari and bring back all of these tabs, so how to save them first.

Click The Bookmarks menu and select Add Bookmarks For These 10 Tabs (the 10 may be different in your case)

2. After selecting, you will see this dialog page drop:

You can rename Save Tabs to something you want as it will create a named folder in the selected Bookmarks folder with all these tabs in it.

3. Then click on the Add button to create the named folder inside the selected Bookmarks folder.

So how do to get them back you ask.

Open a new Safari window
Click on the Bookmarks folder where you save the named folder, in my case (FBA Training website for research)
Then click on Open in New Tabs to open all the before Tabs, or you can click on just 1 of the bookmarks to open that in a new Tab.

So there you have it, how to save your Tabs to call back in a new Safari window.

Please leave a comment if you found this useful.
Make life easier with these Mac shortcuts and tips.

The 2019 MacBook Pro

Whether you're new to the Mac world or have been an avid user for years, there are lots of little tricks and shortcuts many people don't know about that can make your experience with these devices more productive. It doesn't matter if you're running MacOS Catalina or a prior version of the operating system (though, you should download Catalina for a number of reasons) -- you can still do all of these simple things to stay organized and get more done on your MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, iMac or Mac Pro.

Here are 10 tips and tricks for things that you may not have known your Mac could do. 

1. Turn your desktop folders into emoji
Make your desktop folder icons easier to differentiate (and just more fun) by turning each folder into the emoji of your choice. Here's how to do it: 
1. Create a folder on your desktop by clicking File > New folder.
2. Do a Google Image search for the emoji you want (e.g. "heart emoji" or "star emoji").
3. Drag the image you want to your desktop.
4. Double-click the image to open it in Preview.
5. To make the image transparent, press the markup icon (it looks like a magic wand), click the background of the image so that a moving outline appears around it and click Edit > Cut.
6. Click the markup icon again, and click and drag a box around the emoji. 
7. Click edit, select all. Press Command + C.
8. Go back to the original folder you created on your desktop and right-click on it.
9. Click Get Info. 
10. In the screen that pops up, click the blue folder icon and press Command + V. You should see your emoji appear.

iMac Pro

2. Bypass and reset your password when you get locked out
Forgot your Mac password? Don't worry -- MacOS has two built-in, easy ways to log back into your Mac. 
Recovery Mode:
1. Turn off your Mac.
2. Press and hold Command + R, and then press the power button. Hold in Command + R until you see a progress bar appear below the Apple logo on the screen. Your Mac will now be in Recovery Mode.
3. In the menu bar, click Utilities > Terminal. A window will pop up. Type "resetpassword" as one word, without quotes, and press Return. 
4. Close the Terminal windows and you will find the Reset Password Tool. You'll see a list of all user accounts on your Mac -- if you reset the password for your account, you'll have to set a new one for every other user, too.
Apple ID: 
1. After entering the wrong user password a few times, you might be asked if you want to reset it with your Apple ID. Or you can click the question mark icon in the password text field, followed by the arrive icon, to call up the same process.
2. Enter your Apple ID email address and password. A pop-up alert will let you know that a new keychain that stores your passwords will be created. Click OK. 
3. Follow the rest of the prompts to create a new password for your user account.

3. Do calculations and currency conversions in Spotlight

Spotlight is one of the more underrated Mac features -- when you know how to use it, it's a useful tool for getting around your computer faster, and without using a mouse. For example, you can use Spotlight as a calculator and to convert currency. 
To open Spotlight, click the magnifying glass icon at the top left of the menu bar, or tap Command + Space bar on your keyboard. To use it as a calculator, simply type what you want to calculate into the search bar (for example, "919+1246/2") and the answer will appear as the search result, which you can copy and paste. 
To use Spotlight as a currency converter, type the amount you'd like to convert, with its currency symbol (for example, $100 or £100) and the search results will bring up conversion rates in different currencies, with data drawn from Yahoo. 
Read more: 12 Mac search tips from a Spotlight addict

4. Sign documents in the Preview or Mail app

If you're emailed a PDF to sign, you don't have to go through the tedious process of printing it out, signing it and scanning it back in -- your Mac allows you to sign documents directly on your device in the Preview or Mail app. 
You can do this a number of different ways in different apps and programs, including saving a scanned copy of your signature on a piece of white paper and adding it in as an image in a given document. However, if you are working in the Mail app here's what to do: 
1. Drag the PDF into a email message, hover over the PDF, click the button with a down arrow at the top right and click Markup. 
2. Click the box at the top that looks like a signature. 
3. Click Trackpad to sign your name with your mouse on the trackpad, or click Camera sign your name on white paper and take a photo of it with your computer's webcam. You can also save a signature to reuse. 

5. Type emoji from your keyboard

Emoji aren't only for texts on your phone. In almost any web page or app (including Google Docs and Microsoft Word), go to the menu bar and click Edit > Emoji & Symbols. A box with emoji will appear, and you can add any to the page you're working on. Or, you can use a keyboard shortcut: Control + Command + Space. 

Apple Mac Pro: Expensive, sleek

6. Use Split View to see two apps side by side, without resizing

With Split View, your Mac allows you to work in two apps side by side without having to resize them, and without the distraction of other apps. 
1. In MacOS Catalina, go to the upper left corner of a window, and either hover your mouse over or click and hold the green full-screen button. 
2. Choose Tile Window to Left of Screen or Tile Window to Right of Screen from the menu, and the window will fill that side of the screen. In past versions of MacOS (you need OS X El Capitan or later to use Split View), click and hold the green full-screen button, and drag the window to the left or right of the screen to tile it. 
3. To get out of split screen, hit the Esc key on your keyboard. 
Read more: 10 Mac apps everyone should be using

7. Create a keyboard shortcut for anything you want

You're probably familiar with the Mac keyboard shortcuts Apple uses, like Command+C to copy text and Command+V to paste it. But you can also create your own shortcut to access any menu option you like. 
1. Go to System Preferences > Keyboard > Shortcuts > App Shortcuts, and click the + icon. 
2. A box will pop up allowing you to choose the application you want, the name of the menu command and the keyboard shortcut of your choice.
3. After you're done, tap Add. 

8. Make volume adjustments more granular 

Sometimes the difference between each volume step on your Mac is larger than you think it will be, and your music, video or podcast goes from too quiet to too loud in one tap. If you want to make the volume increments smaller, hold down Option+the up arrow as you hit the increase or decrease volume key. This will bring up the Sound box, which will let you adjust the volume in a more granular way. 

9. Rename a group of files at the same time

You don't have to individually rename a bunch of files or photos on your Mac. Instead, go to Finder and select the group of documents or photos you want to rename by clicking one, holding down Shift and clicking the others. Right-click, and scroll down to the option that says Rename X items. Or, after selecting them, click the cog icon and click Rename X items from there. Then, you'll be able to add text, replace text or apply a format like "Sarah's birthday party" with a number for each photo. 

10. Hide or customize the menu bar

Don't want to see the Menu bar on your Mac unless you need it? Go to System Preferences > General, and click Automatically hide and show the menu bar.    
If you want to keep your Menu bar and customize it, you can hold Command and drag the icons into different places, or remove them all together. 

This is the layout of the previous Mojave startup volume:

This is a layout of the original Catalina startup volume:

This is the layout of the latest version Catalina startup volume:

This latest version provides much more protection of your data as the data is separated to its own volume, keeping the system files on their own seperated volume.

Here is just a peak at what the latest version of Catalina upgrade has to accomplish:
For the Catalina installer to complete successfuly, it has to do the following:

rename your existing startup volume with ” – Data” appended;

remove all existing system folders and files from that new Data volume;

change the folder layout on the Data volume;
create a new System volume, and install the new system there;

set the volume types of the System and Data volumes, and convert them into an APFS Volume Group;

create new firmlinks to connect the two volumes.

The installer also has to update the firmware in your Mac, and replace the contents of the Recovery volume.

With all that and more, this is why it is so important to make sure the existing startup hard drive and system is in tip top shape, before upgrading. Also, make sure you have a backup, just in case.

Is it worth upgrading, You betcha...

Option and Command keys open up new opportunities….

Never ever ignore the Option (⌥) Alt key button on your Mac. It has the power to save your day. What follows are just a few essentials from among all the many useful tricks you can unlock with this button.

Unselect this
Selected an item in Finder and you want to unselect it? There’s an Option tip for that:
Command-Option-A and the item(s) you have selected will be unselected.

Find that file
Here is the quickest way to find any file on your Mac: Command-Space to open Spotlight.

Here is another quick way to find a file (when in Finder): Command-Option-F, this will open a new Finder window but your cursor will be placed in the search field – just start typing the item you seek.
Navigate nested files
Most of us keep files (documents, images and so on) inside folders which we then keep nested inside other folders.

This can make it difficult to find things (though you can search for items).
Sometiems you’ll have numerous folders inside a folder when you open it in List view, and you won’t want to manually open each one. You don’t need to, just
Option-Click the little triangle in a folder to open it and all the folders it contains.

Unlock the Menu bar
Everything in your Menu bar  – from application menu items to Wi-Fi and beyond –  may have hidden features you can only get to if you press Option while clicking the item.

Take the Wi-Fi icon. Click on this and you’ll normally see your available networks.
However, click this while depressing the Option key and you’ll see lots more information on your connection and a range of diagnostic tools. It’s worth exploring all the application menu items you use most to see what’s hidden there, such as:

Safari problems
When you reload a website Safari will sometimes load elements of that site from its cache (store of opened things), but you can override this with the Option key. Usually when you tap the View item you can Reload the Page. However, tap the View item and Option and you’ll find you can Reload Page from Origin, which means you get a completely fresh page.
(You can also increase and decrease text size now).
Another useful one is that when you press Option and tap the Safari menu you’ll see an option to Quit and Keep Windows.

Focus more
Working in an application and want to hide all the other open ones on your Mac? Just tap the application in your Dock and then press and hold the Option button – a new item appears called Hide Others. Tap this to remove all your other active applications from view. (You’ll also see a new Force Quit option).

Make and take space
When working in an app you can resize it by dragging the corners – but if you hold down the Option key when doing so you can resize the window from its central point.
The benefits of this may not be immediately obvious – where I most use this is when working in multiple windows/apps, when I might try to minimize the size of all the windows I need in order to make all of them as easy to see as possible – using Option to do this means the content I want to focus on can occupy the window more centrally.
Try it to see what I’m attempting to explain.

Options to get things done
Most creative apps have Option-based secrets to help you in your work. For example, Pages lets you Option Drag to copy graphics, Option and an arrow key (L or R) lets you navigate text by word, rather than by character, or use the Up/Down arrows to skip through paragraphs. EXPERIMENT in the applications you use most to find more.

Save images
When you Save an image in Preview, you’ll be given seven different formats to choose from in the Format drop down box. However, tap Option while choosing the image format and you’ll find 18 choices you can select. (Oh, and when Saving an existing image, Preview gives you a new way to access the Save As command when you tap Option and the File menu).

File management
You can use copy and paste to take a file from one folder to store it in another. Tap Command-C to copy the item, and then tap Command-Option-V to move the original file to its new location.

Get out of trouble
If an application causes your Mac to freeze, always remember to try pressing Command-Option-Escape to access the Force Quit Applications menu. Alternatively you can try Option-clicking the application icon in the Dock.

Do Not Disturb
Hold down the Option key and click on Notification Center to immediately enter Do Not Disturb mode. (You’ll see the icon grey out). This is the quickest way to enter (and exit) this mode.

Change default app
Did you end up being tricked into always opening items of a specific file type in a specific application but want to open them up in another?
Get back to the light – find a file in the file type you want to manage and right-click it. Hold down the Option key when the contextual menu appears and you should see an

Always Open With item – click that and pick the application you want to use in future with this file type.

Don’t forget, most applications hold their own Option/alt secrets. Experiment to find the ones you need!

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