How I set up a new Mac
Posted 25 May 2010 - 10:55 AM
The first thing I do when setting up a new Mac is install ForeverSave or ForeverSave Lite from Tool Force Software.
I have lost my work too many times because I forget to save often and someone plugs out the power, my mac freezes etc.
With ForeverSave, I am prompted to save my file once and from then on I don't have to worry.
Posted 25 May 2010 - 10:59 AM
I agree that DropBox is great and it gives 2 GB of online storage for your computers that you can easily use to transfer files between multiple computers, iPhones, iPod Touches, and iPads for free.
This post has been edited by cpoff: 25 May 2010 - 11:02 AM
Reason for edit: removed referral link
Posted 25 May 2010 - 11:32 AM
Most of the exploits that could attack a Mac are enabled by running as an admin user. And since Mac OS prompts you (or provides a lock icon/button) for privilege escalation whenever needed, there's no downside.
Posted 25 May 2010 - 11:48 AM
oh...that second account is a good one. Saved me a few times.
This post has been edited by vintagegeek: 25 May 2010 - 11:50 AM
Posted 25 May 2010 - 11:48 AM
The first thing I do is a variation on Dock minimization: like Lex, I drop almost all of Apple's default icons, (I leave Safari and iTunes, and add EyeTV) but I actually kind'a like the oversized icons, so I don't add very many other icons to the Dock itself. Rather, I create an "Applications" folder inside of my user profile folder, and drag aliases of all of my frequently used programs into that. Then I drag that folder into the right side of the Dock, right next to the Trash icon... bada-bing, I have my own customized Applications menu right on the Dock!
(I also Get Info on the real Applications folder, copy its icon to the clipboard, and paste it onto my own folder, and then right click on the icon in the Dock and adjust it to Display as Folder rather than Stack... but that's all just aesthetics. )
Posted 25 May 2010 - 12:44 PM
When I saw the headline for this article, I thought that it was going to give more advice along these lines.
When I set up a new Mac, I set up a dedicated admin account (turning off automatic log-in) where I install all the apps I'd like to run on the computer. I launch them once, especially if they're a download, to make sure they're functioning and to get rid of subsequent pop-up warnings about the app having been downloaded. If this pop-up is addressed in the account that the program was downloaded and installed, then it doesn't show up for ever user. If it's not, then it will come up ever time. I don't do any work or play in this account. I use it to install new apps and updates to existing apps. This way they're easily available to and up to date on all accounts. Whenever there are significant updates released by Apple, I take that opportunity to log into the admin account and download and install any updates available for all the programs on the computer.
I then create password-protected general-user accounts for all potential users of the computer. I like the idea of creating a second admin account that goes untouched, just in case something happens to the first. I may implement that.
I turn on stealth mode and require the password to wake the computer from sleep. I set the size of my dock relatively small with magnification set to max. I keep the dock hidden off the bottom of my screen (laptops) or the right (average desktops with a single monitor). On my one setup with dual monitors, I keep the dock visible at the bottom of the 30" one.
Necessary printers are added and tested.
My initial set up includes the following programs and plug-ins: Flip4Mac, Perian, VLC, Cyberduck, Firefox (w/ the Click to Flash plug-in installed on general-user accounts), Neo Office, and Dropbox.
Posted 25 May 2010 - 02:46 PM
In OS 9, it made sense to have the icons on the desktop. Why? That was the only way we had. In all open and save dialogs, you had to go to the Desktop to find a drive. In OS X, choose Open or Save, now go to the Desktop, do you see the drives that you see in the finder? No. Where are they? In the sidebar. The same place the belong in the finder.
Think about this another way. When you open the hard drive from the desktop, you then must click on the folder you want, usually your home folder. That was 3 clicks. What is the better way? A single click on the Finder icon in the Dock. Boom, one click and you have your home folder.
The other problem with the hard drive on the Desktop? It can cause people to drag files there when cleaning their desktop. This causes files to be placed at the root level of the drive, instead of the user's home folder. Not good for backup or just for finding the files in the future.
The last problem occurs when people have an external drive or CD installed when they login. These drives are always placed in the upper-right hand side, this causes any other files on the desktop to move, sometimes making it hard for the user to find them.
Sorry to ramble so long. This is (obviously a pet peeve :-)