Enable Safari highlighting feature

If you are browsing the web and you notice several items which you would like to highlight out of the many without having to select with your mouse or keyboard, there is an easy way to achieve this with a simple key command.

First, go to Preferences in Safari, and choose Advanced.

Next check the box next to Press Tab to highlight each item on a webpage.

Now all you have to do is type Option + Tab to easily highlight items.

Customize software update frequency

You have the option of manually checking for updates or having an automatic check which can occur daily, weekly or monthly. This is especially helpful if you would like to not see the update window constantly opening up. You can also choose to have software downloaded upon installation to save on bandwidth.

Just go to Software Update in System Preferences and select the Scheduled Check pane to select your preferences.

Renaming your network in OS X

Instead of having the same self-assigned names like AirPort appear in the menu bar, or whatever the default name might be for a new device you install on your Mac network, you can have a custom name of your choice.

In case you haven't already discovered this, just go to Network in System Preferences.

From here, select a network connection on the left, such as AirPort, for example.

Go down to the little gear at the bottom left and choose Rename Service.

Stop OS X searching external drives

You can stop OS X from using Spotlight to index and search your external drives you have connected directly or wirelessly.

The solution to this is fairly simple. You have to configure Spotlight to exclude certain locations from searches. Luckily you can do this without a Terminal command.

Go to System Preferences, and go to Spotlight.

Select the Privacy pane. As you can see you can choose the plus button to add different folders and drives to a list of assigned locations for exclusion on Spotlight searching.

If you want to plug in an external drive and not have it indexed, you can simply add it to the list immediately after the drive is mounted to prevent deep indexing from occurring.

This is particularly helpful if you have large amounts of data you search through on a regular basis, but you don't want Spotlight showing some results which get in the way of things you access more readily, such as Applications and other files that have a greater priority for you in search results.

Set up a wireless network on your Mac

Ever wanted a wireless network without using a wireless router? You can do this easily with a Mac running OS X 10.2 or later.

Simply plug in your ethernet (LAN) cable to your cable modem obtained from your internet provider and plug it into the back of your iMac, Mac Mini, Mac Pro, or MacBook Pro, or whatever computer happens to have an ethernet port built-in. You can also use Ethernet to USB adapters if need be.

Once plugged in, check to see if your Mac has been assigned an IP address and your internet is up and running. For example, just go to Safari and try to browse the web.

Once you have a connection working, go to System Preferences. Go to Sharing and select Internet Sharing.

As you can see on this settings pane there are a number of ways to share internet to and from different devices. But for the purposes of this article you want to select "Share your connection from" your "Ethernet", "To computers using" your "Airport".

Go to AirPort Options, from here you will be able to assign a network name and default channel. Also 40-bit and 128-bit encryption are both available and highly recommended if you will be using this feature for an extended period of time.

Now once you have this set up, you have created a wireless access point. Now you can search for local wireless connections using your iPhone or any other device. Choose your new network name and enter your password and everything should sync up. Be sure to set your devices to remember to password so you don't have to enter it again unless you choose a new Wi-Fi password.

The only downside to this way of having a Wi-Fi network in your home is that your internet connection will only be available when both your modem and machine are running at the same time. This type of scenario would be best for a desktop you have always running in the background.

The upside is that your desktop computer will have blazing fast internet from a direct wired connection, and your wireless devices will have simple and instant wireless access with decent to excellent bandwidth depending on your hardware.

Can't Delete Files in Trash Called "Locked Items"

You might have noticed when you move certain files to the your trash bin that you can't empty the trash and then also getting a message saying "There are some locked items in the Trash".

There are numerous reasons for this, but one of them might be that you have a file on your local drive that has a lock originating from your Mac or another user. If you have Administrator access and there aren't very many files you are trying to delete, you could simply select the file or files with the lock.

Simply type Command + I for Get Info. In this case, you will see there is a little check box marked Locked, and the easy fix should be to uncheck this box.

Another cause of a file being locked in the trash might be that you are attempting to delete certain files from a Windows machine or Windows formatted hard drive. In this case, it can be quite a pain to find a direct way to get to each file to make them easy for you to delete.

The ultimate solution to most of these problems is to simply hold down the Option key and click Empty Trash from the Finder menu as well as right-clicking and selecting it there.