Add Websites to Safari 4 Beta Top Sites

There's a way to add your websites you want featured in the Top Sites, without having to access these pages many times in order to show up listed.

First start up Safari 4 Beta.

Go to Top Sites.

Click on Edit.

Now open a new window and go to the website you want to add.

You now want to drag the URL icon on the top left of the URL bar over to the Top Sites window.

Presto! You have just added a new website without having to visit over and over again!

How To Transfer Music From iPod to iTunes

For some unknown reasons, some reasons possibly due to iTunes copyright issues, Apple does not allow the iPhone and the iPod to send music from the device to any computer other than your own. It seems there's no native commands you can do to overcome this problem. The only solution I have been able to find on the web are several different Apps which help you do this. But none of the solutions that I found are completely free.

By far, the best App for the mac I have found is PodWorks 2.9.3.

It allows you to easily send selected songs or all songs on your iPod or iPhone to iTunes on ANY computer. There's no worries about syncing and erasing all your data. Just install the App, plug in your device and you are good to go.

There's a 30 day limit. 250 song copy limit. Songs must be copied one at a time. Single-drag copying of playlists is disabled. But, the full App is only $8! Which is definitely reasonable when you consider how frustrating this can be, when you have more than one computer or if you lose your hard drive and need to start over without losing everything on your iPod the next time you plug it in.

Get CD Track Names in iTunes

Why doesn't iTunes show track names on imported CDs? There's a couple things you can do to overcome this problem. Usually when playing CDs or importing them, you will only see "Track 01", "Track 02" etc. iTunes can be great to use, but if you wish to import several CDs into your music library, you could accidentally very easily clogging up your library with repeated titles like "Track 01" seven times!

In the latest version of iTunes 8, you will want to go to Preferences, and under the General pane at the bottom you will see Import Settings, and you want to check "Automatically retrieve CD track names from the Internet". Now when you insert a CD, it should display all the song and artist information. If not, you can try inserting the CD, and then go to the Advanced menu, and choose "Get CD Track Names".

If these options do not work your CD is likely a copied and burned disc, or your CD is too obscure and/or just not yet included in the iTunes database.

MP3 editor for iPhone Ringtones

There is a simple App called Fission for taking clips from any section of a MP3 for ringtones on your iPhone, or any other compatible cell phone. It has a very nice custom auto-save to iPhone feature.

You can trim and split audio files with no loss in quality (bitrate or compression) of the sound. Also, you can copy and paste selections of audio anywhere you want in the file, or delete selections altogether.

Supported formats include: MP3, AAC, Apple Lossless, AIFF and WAV.

There's a free demo version available for download, along with a full paid version for $32. It is worth every penny if you want very easy MP3 ringtone clip creation without having to re-encode your files. It is only available for the Mac.

Eject Hanging Disks and Disk Images

Sometimes OS X will delay ejecting Disk Images or Disk drives, so much that sometimes you can wait a long time and nothing will happen. Also, sometimes Right-clicking and ejecting or dragging the icon to the Trash does no good and this can be very annoying when you want to get your thumb drive out and go without damaging your data.

You can use Disk Utility for ejecting images that are hanging, but there's also a good AppleScript out there that can help you eject them immediately too!

Eject Disks © RickoKid 2008
Version 0.1

This program is free software: you can redistribute it and/or modify
it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by
the Free Software Foundation, either version 3 of the License, or
(at your option) any later version.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful,
but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of
GNU General Public License for more details.

You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License
along with this program. If not, see <>.

set prefaceMessage to ""
set confirm to false

-- check if current selection in Finder contains any ejectable disks
set ejectables to my findEjectable(selection of application "Finder")
if (count of ejectables) is greater than 0 then
-- Ejectable disks are selected in Finder, add them to the eject list
set ejectList to ejectables
set prefaceMessage to "Note: Ejecting disks selected in Finder." & return & return
-- No ejectable disks in Finder selection; look for all ejectable disks on the system ...
tell application "Finder" to set allEjectables to name of every disk whose ejectable is true
on error
-- Finder throws an error (tantrum?) if it can't match the 'whose' condition, ie when there are no disks to match
display alert "No ejectable disks" message "Couldn't find any ejectable disks on your system!" as informational buttons {"OK"} giving up after 10
return "Error: No ejectable disks."
end try

-- if ejectable disks are found ...
if (count of allEjectables) is 1 then
set ejectList to allEjectables
set confirm to true
else if (count of allEjectables) is greater than 1 then
set ejectList to choose from list allEjectables with title "Eject Disk" with prompt "Choose which disk(s) to eject" OK button name "Eject" with multiple selections allowed without empty selection allowed
end if
end if

my kickoffEject(ejectList, prefaceMessage, confirm)

on open droppedDisks
set ejectables to findEjectable(droppedDisks)
my kickoffEject(ejectables, "Note: Ejecting dropped disks." & return & return, false)
end open

on findEjectable(selectedList)
set ejectables to {}
tell application "Finder"
repeat with selectedItem in selectedList
if class of selectedItem is alias then
set nameOfItem to name of selectedItem
set matchingDisks to (every disk whose name is nameOfItem and ejectable is true)
repeat with matchItem in matchingDisks
set ejectables to ejectables & {name of matchItem}
end repeat
else if class of selectedItem is disk and ejectable of selectedItem then
set ejectables to ejectables & {name of selectedItem}
end if
end repeat
end tell
return ejectables
end findEjectable

on kickoffEject(ejectList, preface, confirm)
set textDelimiters to AppleScript's text item delimiters
set AppleScript's text item delimiters to return
-- if disks are chosen (don't try if Cancel is clicked) or 1 is confirmed or disks are selected in Finder
set messages to {}
set moreInfo to {}

if (count of ejectList) is greater than 0 then
if confirm then
set ejectIt to display alert "Eject" message "Are you sure you want to eject the following disk(s)?" & return & return & (ejectList as text) as warning buttons {"Cancel", "Eject"} default button "Eject" cancel button "Cancel" giving up after 20
if button returned of ejectIt is "Cancel" then return "User cancelled."
end if

set AppleScript's text item delimiters to return & tab
repeat with ejectDisk in ejectList
set ejectResult to (do shell script "touch /tmp/" & ejectDisk & "-report.txt; hdiutil detach '/Volumes/" & ejectDisk & "' &> /tmp/" & ejectDisk & "-report.txt &")
repeat while ejectResult is equal to ""
delay 0.5
set ejectResult to (do shell script "cat /tmp/" & ejectDisk & "-report.txt")
end repeat
do shell script "rm /tmp/" & ejectDisk & "-report.txt"
if ejectResult contains "error" then error ejectResult
set messages to messages & {"Ejected disk \"" & ejectDisk & "\" successfully."}
set moreInfo to moreInfo & {"Success: disk \"" & ejectDisk & "\": " & return & tab & (paragraphs of ejectResult as text)}
on error errorMsg
set messages to messages & {"Error: disk \"" & ejectDisk & "\" could not be ejected."}
set moreInfo to moreInfo & {"Fail: disk \"" & ejectDisk & "\":" & return & tab & errorMsg}
end try
end repeat

set AppleScript's text item delimiters to return

if (count of messages) is not 0 then
set report to display alert "Ejection Results" message preface & (messages as text) as informational buttons {"More info ...", "Close"} default button "Close" giving up after 60
if button returned of report is "More info ..." then
set moreDetailedInfo to {}
repeat with eachMessage in moreInfo
if eachMessage contains "error" then
set diskDev to do shell script "mount | grep " & word 3 of eachMessage & " |awk '{print $1}'"
set openFiles to paragraphs of (do shell script "lsof -Fc " & diskDev & " | sed -ne '/c/ s/c//p'")
if (count of openFiles) is greater than 0 then
set AppleScript's text item delimiters to return & tab & tab
set eachMessage to eachMessage & return & tab & "Processes open on disk:" & return & tab & tab & (openFiles as text)
set AppleScript's text item delimiters to return
end if
end if
set moreDetailedInfo to moreDetailedInfo & {return & eachMessage}
end repeat
display alert "Ejection Details" message (moreDetailedInfo as text) as informational buttons {"OK"} default button "OK"
end if
end if
end if
set AppleScript's text item delimiters to textDelimiters
end kickoffEject

This is very good for isolating those hanging Disks, when you're not sure which Application or Applications are keeping the Disk from ejecting.

Disable Dock Bouncing

Some people don't like to see the App icons bounce in their Dock and want to take more control of the look of the Dock. Sometimes there's an option to stop bouncing in the preferences of certain Applications, but very few offer this feature. If you want to disable bouncing for all Apps, all you need to do is a couple simple Terminal commands.

Run Terminal, and type these two commands:

$ defaults write no-bouncing -bool TRUE
$ killall Dock

Now restart OS X. After it restarts everything, you should not see your icons bounce anymore!

Hide Application windows easily

Want to be able to clear your Desktop without having to clutter your Dock or without clicking every window of an Application one by one? or maybe want to minimize one Application's windows while leaving some others open? There are a few handy shortcuts for these tasks that you might not be aware of already.

One keyboard shortcut allows you to Hide all windows of the App you are currently using (hiding is making the App invisible, without sending minimize windows to your Dock). This is very nice too if you do not wish to use the Show Desktop key shortcut or Exposé function. Make the window active of the Application you want to hide and type:
Command + H.
Now all the windows will instantly disappear. Just click on the icon for the app in the Dock to instantly restore all the windows to where they were before.

There is another nice shortcut which allows you to hide all other Application's windows and only show one Application's windows.
To do this, you must hold Command + Option and click on the App you wish to keep open. All other windows will now be hidden but still active. If you wish to see them again, you can click once on each app in the Dock.

iPhoto and iTunes plug-in for XBOX 360

A nice app for the mac that allows you to stream your photos from iPhoto and stream your music and movie libraries from iTunes to your XBOX 360. It is not well-known but quite handy if you want to stream easily, and not have to stream using other less attractive methods. It is called Connect360.

You can connect to iPhoto and play a slideshow in HD, which look especially good on a 1080p or 720p HDTV. It supports many formats for viewing images, including JPEG, PNG, GIF, TIFF, BMP.

You can browse and search all your music by artist, song, album, genre, playlist. And you can listen as you play a game as you would with any other music source on the 360. It works with MP3, WAV, and AIFF formats.

It does great HD video streaming. Movie formats supported include MOV, AVI, MPEG4, WMV, and ASF.

There's more options, including how to limit which XBOX consoles are allowed to connect to your MAC libraries.

Automatically play imported songs in iTunes

Want to have iTunes automatically play songs that you import? or maybe you would like iTunes to not play anything immediately after it is imported. I looked all over iTunes for this before I realized that this trick is just another simple Terminal edit.

First, quit iTunes, then run Terminal, and type the following command:

defaults write play-songs-while-importing -bool TRUE

That's if you want iTunes to automatically play songs, if not type, type in "FALSE" instead. Now restart iTunes and enjoy.

Always Securely Empty Trash

Usually if you want to securely empty your Trash you end up going to Finder and on the Finder menu choosing "Secure Empty Trash". When you securely empty the Trash, OS X will overwrite the deleted data making it less recoverable than the default Empty Trash found in the Trash window in the Dock.

If you wish to use Secure Empty Trash all the time without ever going to the Finder menu, all you have to do is go to Finder Preferences on the Finder menu or type "Command + ,". Now go to the Advanced tab, and check "Empty Trash securely". Now it becomes the default for the system, but you must use the keyboard shortcut Shift + Command + delete to empty securely, otherwise if you choose to right-click on Trash in the Dock and choose Empty Trash, it will not empty securely.

Another alternative, if you wish to do some typing, is go to Terminal, and type the following command:
defaults write NSUserKeyEquivalents '{"Secure Empty Trash" = "$@\177";}'

Exit Terminal, and use Force Quit on Finder to relaunch.

Run Cooler MacBooks

Overheating MacBook? Do you have an MacBook or MacBook Pro that gets hot all the time because of a heavy work load or just because you leave it on for a long period of time?

There's a neat little app out there called smcFanControl that allows you to change the minimum fan speed for your fan or fans. You can change and moderate the settings until you find one that keeps your machine cool all the time.

However, for safety, the app does not allow you to set the fan speeds below the Apple default settings to protect your machine from overheating.

Right now, this app will only work with the Intel-based MacBook, MacBook Pro, and Mac Mini. Support for others might follow soon. Also, I've heard that there are certain versions of the MacBook which are incompatible, but it should be compatible with most.

Definitely essential if you're a MacBook user.

Show Trash in Sidebar in Finder

Want to be able to drag and drop files to the Trash from within the same Finder window? You can easily add the Trash to your sidebar after a quick Terminal edit.

First, you need to enable OS X to show hidden UNIX files on your system.

Run Terminal, then type the following:

defaults write AppleShowAllFiles YES

You can revert this process of showing hidden files by typing the same command line, only typing "NO" instead of "YES" at the end.

After you have completed this command in Terminal. Go to the Apple menu and click "Force Quit" or type the shortcut Option + Command + esc, and then choose "Relaunch Finder". Now, open Finder and go to your User folder (whatever your username might be) and drag .Trash over to the sidebar. Now you can get to the trash without ever having to use the Trash icon in the Dock.

Watch Movies Transparently

Want to be able to keep an eye on a movie or tv show transparently as you work in Mail? or as you surf in Safari?

Afloat is a great plug-in that allows you to do just this. You can adjust your level of transparency, and make a video in Quicktime always on top so that you can see it through all the other windows open. Also, there is an option to view the video as an overlay, so that any clicks will only go through to the window which is not transparent, allowing you to work as if the video window is not even there in your way.

All you have to do is download the file. Install and follow the instructions on screen. After the installation is complete be sure to go to the new pane in System Preferences, and select to enable the plug-in in the Extended section. Now once you start up Quicktime, start any video and go to Window, and on the menu underneath Favorites you will see the new options for Afloat.

Use Screensaver Images As Desktop

Want to be able to use the pictures featured in the OS X Cosmos Screensaver as your Desktop image instead of Screensaver? Or use the Abstract, Beach, Forest, Nature Patterns or Paper Shadow picture Screensaver images? The images used in these picture shows are a little buried, so you can't find them by simply searching in Spotlight for "Cosmos" or "Beach".

The easiest way is to go to folders System / Library / Screen Savers and look for Cosmos.slideSaver (or whichever picture gallery you want *.slideSaver) and right-click on the file. Then choose "Show Package Contents". Now you can simply Copy and Paste the images stored in the file to any place on your hard drive or hard drives. Then you can go to choose a Desktop image in System Preferences and then direct it to the folder containing the image or images you saved for your Desktop.

How To Create A Recently Used Apps Stack

Want to create a special Stack that contains up to 10 of your recently used Applications? It can be quite handy.

Run Terminal, and type the following command:

defaults write persistent-others -array-add '{ "tile-data" = { "list-type" = 1; }; "tile-type" = "recents-tile"; }'

Then type:

killall Dock

Now, you should have a new recently used applications Stack in your Dock. To remove it, simply grab the Stack and move it off the Dock and "poof", it is gone.

How To Create Stacks

One easy but not quite obvious trick is how to create Stacks. Stacks are easily accessible folder items that can fan out on the screen or appear in a grid (my personal preference) from your Dock. Leopard comes with two standard Stacks, one for Documents, the other for Downloads, either of which you can easily delete if you wish. You can create your own Stack with any folder on your hard drive. All you need to do is use Finder to navigate to the folder or root containing your desired folder for the Stack. Now drag the folder onto the Dock on the side of the lines that contains the Trash and Stacks and separates from the Apps in the Dock. Now just right-click on the Stack to customize it.

iTunes Lyrics Dashboard Widget

Harmonic is a great little Dashboard widget that fetches lyrics from the web for each song currently playing in iTunes. It automatically adds the lyrics found to the tag information in iTunes. It now has additional International support for special character accents. Also, if the widget cannot fetch the lyrics, it allows you to search the web, copy and automatically paste the lyrics and then it will save the information to the file playing in iTunes.