Archive for ‘OSX’ Category
Posted on 23:15, November 14th, 2007 by Many Ayromlou
Here is a quick way to enable full path display in the finder windows under Leopard. You can turn this on by issuing the following two commands in a terminal window:
Posted on 16:55, November 11th, 2007 by Many Ayromlou
So now that I have a basic OSC receiver for aka.iPhone’s XY controller, I’ve been going through Apple’s Demo Compositions – under /Developer/Examples/Quartz Composer/Compositions — and adding my portion of the OSC receiver to them. Here is the latest one, akaRemote-Caterpillar, which is a adaptation of “Caterpillar.qtz” under /Developer/Examples/Quartz Composer/Compositions/Interactive. Again I need to remind you to read the first Article to get started and that these QC compositions are for Leopard/QC3.0 only and require a jailbroken Ipod Touch or iPhone.
Posted on 15:05, November 11th, 2007 by Many Ayromlou
Well here are my two (akaRemote, akaRemote-Particle) attempts at QC compositions that work really well with the XY controller of aka.iPhone. The XY Controller surface is the only thing I’ve been able to get working with QC, since Masayuki Akamatsu (the author of aka.iPhone) tends to use the same basic “/event” OSC message with a custom number of arguments. The limitations is actually in QC in that you can only have one OSC receiver on a UDP port at a time. Further a OSC receiver can not receive the same message with different arguments (int, float, float array). The author does mention that his protocol might change without notice, so hopefully he’ll read this post and change the messages to cascading/two level OSC messages to signify which button’s are activated and also to get more diversity in the base message string (ie: /event/Pad/buttonB1 message of type boolean which would signify a toggle button on the Pad screen being fired). I don’t pretend to be an OSC god, but I think it makes the protocol more readable/adaptable, which might not be the authors intent.
I decided that for my own use the XY controller was the most useful to reverse engineer (and also the easiest). The OSC command is “/event a b c“, where “a” is the trigger, “b” is the x-coordinate and “c” is the y-coordinate. X and Y coordinates are between (0,0) at the bottom left of the ipod touch screen and (1,1) at the top right.
Now here is how you get it all going:
Posted on 11:52, November 2nd, 2007 by Many Ayromlou
Have a look at the picture above…..This is fresh from my Macbook this morning (when it woke up from sleep mode). Notice anything strange…..let me help you, have a look at the Aiport icon in the menu bar and the actual Airport device setting in Network preferences. Yep, Icon in menu bar says Airport is turned off, the device setting shows it’s on and associated/working. Apple FIX THIS WILL YA…….Oh btw, if you want a temporary fix for this just flick the “show Airport status in menu bar” check box off and on again and the menubar icon will be fixed.
If you like to get rid of the stripes in the list view of the new Leopard Finder, open a Terminal Window and type in the following two commands:
Posted on 21:40, October 31st, 2007 by Many Ayromlou
Okay as much as I like OSX and apple I have to admit, Leopard is not quite ready for consumption. Not unless you’re willing to do a “Erase Install”. After the weekend fun session of “Archive installing” 5 machines, I have found another bug/feature/headache. Here is how it happens:
Well, not quite. It might seem like everything is transfered, until you start wondering about WINS Servers and Windows WORKGROUP/Domain settings. You see under Tiger these two were stored under directory utility, but under Leopard they’ve tried to pack everything under Advanced Network settings (Preferences/Network/Advanced…). The problem is that if you’ve had your Network locations transfered from tiger, the advanced WINS panel will NOT let you enter/add new WINS servers or change the WORKGROUP field. You can try and change them, but as soon as you press OK followed by Apply on the next screen, the fields reset to blank.
Try it and you’ll see if you go back the field wil be blank. The only way to fix this is to create “New” Locations and re-set them up, then you can fill in the WINS and WORKGROUP entries and they’ll stick. Apple are you listening, not only are the Network panels a mess — just compare the 3 different widgets used under Network settings……must be some new Leopard crack they’re sniffing……consistency people — but the network configuration screens refuse to take into effect the changes you put in if you’ve done a “Upgrade” or “Archive” install. This only wasted three hours today, I’m sure someone in Cupertino is having a good laugh.
Just noticed that if you place your dock on either side of the screen you get a flat dock, instead of that floating 3d look. As much as I like the 3D look, I liked the flat look even more, so after poking around I found out how to disable the 3D look. Open a Terminal window and type in the following two commands:
Like many of you, I picked up Leopard Family pack last night. You see I have 4 mac’s and for $199 the family pack allows me to install leopard on up to 5 machines (in the same household). Anyways I did run into some troubles so I figured I’ll let you guys know about the gotchas:
- I “Upgraded” a 10.4.10 MBP 17″ and everything more or less worked, about the only thing I couldn’t get working was istat menu gadget. That Blue screen thing after the first reboot scared me to death, since your machine literally churns away for a good 5 minutes before the desktop loads. This only happens on the first boot after install. Some people have reported this screen followed by a what sounds like a lockup, but that did not happen to me. Strangely little snitch version 1.x worked fine after the upgrade (It’s not supposed to).
- I the proceeded to “Upgrade” a hoped-up Mac G4 Cube (Dual 1.5 Ghz w/ 1.5 GB of Ram and Nvidia Geforce 2 gfx) that was running 10.4.10 Server edition and low behold…..the installation worked fine but when I rebooted the boot device (startup disk) was not there anymore. I ended up having to do a “Erase/Fresh install” which is working but I lost some apps (no biggie, I have most of them on the MBP).
- Third came the G4 12″ PowerBook. I “Upgraded” it from 10.4.10 and everything went fine through the install, but when I rebooted all I got was the white screen with the apple logo and the spinner thing. The spinner kept spinning for at least 60-70 minutes and nothing (you could hear faint HD access one in a while). I rebooted a couple more times, tried single user mode, safe mode and verbose boot but nothing worked just the spinner. I did a re-”Upgrade” and the same results again. Then thought, why not try the “Archive System Install” option and low and behold everything worked. The system actually grabbed all my 10.4.10 Apps and installed them in the right place. My account was also transfered and everything came back just like before. The only problem on this machine (which I have to admit does not have much installed on it) was Little Snitch. I ended up having to upgrade to the 2.x beta family pack, downloaded the new installer and everything is happy again.
- At this point I got kinda bold and did a “Archive System Install” on my MacBook 2.0Ghz straight from 10.4.10 to 10.5 and I have to say wow….the archive option is a lot less hassle and moves (almost) all your apps and accounts/settings over. Adobe CS3 works fine and even Final Cut Studio is fully functional after the Archive install. Some things didn’t work here and required reinstalls, but no major breakdowns. The main ones were:
- At last I got really adventurous and went back to my “Upgraded” 10.5 MBP and did a “Archive System Install” on it. Everything went okay, Apps and settings got transfered properly, but in addition to the 5 breakdowns above I had to reinstall the following:
Now everything is happy (I think). I’m doing my second time machine backup. The machine feels faster than before. I have left Spotlight running for now, to see if it’s tendency to go nuts once in a while has been fixed. Not everything has gone as planned, but for the most part I have to say that “Archive” install option is your friend. I would avoid the “Upgrade” option on PPC machines since I’ve had two bad (back-to-back) experiences.
OSX Webmaster special: Shared webserver, bad umask settings, group permissions and filenames with spaces…
Posted on 12:20, October 24th, 2007 by Many Ayromlou
Okay so this all started with our users not being able to share files on our webserver. We use SSH only for upload/download and interactive access (ie: no ftp). Through trial and error we found out that the default umask (under OSX Server) for sftp uploaded files are 0033 (ie: rwxr–r–) and directories are 0022 (ie: rwxr-xr-x). This creates a problem when one user uploads a file and another user downloads/modifies and tries to re-upload it — they simply can’t because the group permissions are wrong.
If we were using ftp (which we are not) there are some solutions on the net that allow you to modify the startup parameters for the ftp server so that the default umask for all files is 0013 — which would allow a group of people to share/overwrite each others files — but we are using ssh only.
So we came up with two other solutions — a shared upload account and/or a cron job that would modify the group permissions on the website directory to allow group sharing. We went with the second solution and that’s where I ran into so many problems that I decided to create this post. You see normally Unix users know that spaces (and strange characters) in filenames are a no-no. Well that’s not true for Windows and Mac users, they use spaces and other odd characters in their filenames/folders all the time.
I started writing — what I thought was — a simple “for loop” script to go through the website folder and change the group permissions. Of course on the first try things didn’t work nicely because of spaces, so I started compensating for that and came up with:
Finally after a latenight RTFM session (and lots of cursing), I think I’ve found the ultimate file handling loop statement:
After trimming and optimizing the script a bit, here is the final product:
Posted on 17:15, September 16th, 2007 by Many Ayromlou
So if your menubar is as packed as mine, you usually have to kill menubar utils just to get to your application menus (specially bad when I run Photoshop). SlimBatteryMonitor comes to rescue. SlimBatteryMonitor is a replacement power gauge for Apple’s Mac OS X that tracks both laptop batteries and many UPS batteries. Multiple-battery systems (e.g. older powerbooks) are supported as well. A graphical icon shows the power remaining, and can be accompanied by a text description (battery charge in percent, or time remaining). Colours can indicate whether the system is fully charged, charging or on battery.
Best of all, you can choose different display options for each battery state (fully charged, charging or on battery). You may wish to see the time remaining while on battery, for example, but show only the icon during charging, and hide SlimBatteryMonitor entirely when batteries are fully charged. SlimBatteryMonitor is a better choice because it presents the same information in a much more space efficient manner, allowing you to fit other menu bar items on the screen as well.
SharePoints 3.5.4 is a little known gem that allows you to REALLY “manage” your samba and afs shares under OSX. It’s free (donationware) and now Universal. No more limits as to who shares what with who, no more editing smb.conf by hand. It’s your machine you paid for it, it came with OSX and samba so why run in castrated mode :-)
SharePoints is an application or a preference pane that makes it easy to add and delete share points like in the old Finder. In Mac OS X, by default, you are limited to sharing only what is in your public folder in your home directory. This program makes it easy to share any folder.
Well, I’ll leave this one to you. You can decide on it’s Kosherness. The application is called TED and it can find all sorts of TV episodes you might have missed. From the homepage:
ted can find episodes of any TV show you like to watch. Just add your favorite shows to ted and he will search for the newest episodes and downloads them for you. ted uses bittorrent and RSS technology to get you the newest episodes as fast as possible! ted comes with a huge list of shows, all waiting for you to be watched. ted even displays a summary of each show, to help you choose shows you like.
ted requires Java 5 and a bittorrent client and is available for all platforms (Linux, Windows, Mac). Download here.
NeoOffice is a full-featured set of office applications (including word processing, spreadsheet, presentation, and drawing programs) for Mac OS X. Based on the OpenOffice.org office suite, NeoOffice has integrated dozens of native Mac features and can import, edit, and exchange files with other popular office programs such as Microsoft Office.
It is available for free from the NeoOffice download page.
You all know my dislike for Microsoft and their products. Whenever possible I’ve tried to get away from having to use their software. Here is another opensource product that allows us to do our thing without them. From their overview page:
OpenProj is a free, open source desktop alternative to Microsoft Project. The OpenProj solution is ideal for desktop project Click to enlarge in a new windowmanagement and is available on Linux, Unix, Mac or Windows. OpenProj is a complete desktop replacement of Microsoft Project and even opens existing native Project files. OpenProj shares the most advanced scheduling engine in the industry with Project-ON-Demand. The OpenProj solution has Gantt Charts, Network Diagrams (PERT Charts), WBS and RBS charts, Earned Value costing and more.
Desklickr is my latest obsession. Great little utility that grabs images from Flickr and constantly refreshes your desktop background. There is even a Desklickr group for people who don’t want to think too much. Just set it and forget it.
Here is a quick link to WeatherDock for all you weather nuts. This is one of the best weather utilities I’ve seen in a longtime. Best of all…..It’s Free. Sorry Mac Only.
Posted on 16:06, August 1st, 2007 by Many Ayromlou
UPDATE: Please see this article if you use Leopard (OSX 10.5+). The procedure below, although not damaging, works for 10.4 and below (Tiger). Thanks to Anonymous for pointing this out.
Got a new Macbook thru work today and after Firewire targeting my profile over from my personal MBP, I started looking around the blog for the entry that shows you how to turn off Spotlight. You see Spotlight is a good idea, but I think it needs a bit more work. I’ve noticed that on my MBP and older Dual G5 machines, the mds service sometimes just goes nuts (usually corrupt files or something like that), and brings the machine to a halt. So I like to turn Spotlight off ASAP. Here is how:
Note that the crazy spotlight icon will still be there, but the backend (the bad stuff) will be disabled after the reboot. You can optionally kill the icon (not recommended) by issuing the command:
Posted on 23:18, July 28th, 2007 by Many Ayromlou
Okay so how many times have you “deleted” a file on a USB drive under OSX only to find out later that the storage is still tied up in .Trashes directory. Well there is a easy way to fix this. Open terminal, cd to your USB drives root directory (mounted under /Volumes) and issue the following: