Thursday, July 28, 2011

Cut and Paste files in Finder finally on OSX Lion

Lion introduces a long-requested 'copy and move' command in Finder, similar to 'cut and paste' in Windows Explorer.

To move files in Finder first press Command+C to copy the selected files, then press Command+Option+V to move the copied files to the current folder. 

Make Dashboard translucent again in OSX 10.7 Lion

Lion by default opens the Dashboard as its own space, which means you can't see the desktop 'through' it like you could in 10.6. You can return the Dashboard to its former transparent splendor by telling Mission Control to not open the Dashboard as a space.

To return the Dashboard to its pre-Lion behavior:
  • Open System Preferences.
  • Click the Mission Control panel.
  • Un-select the 'Show dashboard as a space' check box.
  • Close the System Preferences.
Not only will the Dashboard return to displaying as an overlay above the desk, but as a bonus, you will have back the cool 'ripple' effect when adding new widgets. 

Friday, July 22, 2011

How to un-hide the ~/Library folder in OSX Lion 10.7

By default, the ~/Library folder is hidden in Lion. This is a big problem to many of the readers of this site, as many hints involve this folder (especially any involving hidden preferences).

You can easily un-hide this folder for easy access. Simply run the following command in Terminal:

chflags nohidden ~/Library

If, for some reason, you want to re-hide it, you can run the same command using 'hidden' instead of 'nohidden'.

You can actually use this command to hide or unhide any folder. Just put it's path in place of ~/Library

How to install new voices on OSX 10.7 Lion

Apple has created lots of new speech synthesizer voices for Lion. It's easy to download them, but the fact that they exist isn't very-well advertised in System Preferences (or otherwise in the OS). Here's how to get them.
  • Open System Preferences » Speech » Text to Speech.
  • Click on the System Voice: menu and select Customize.
  • You're presented with a huge list of voices to choose from.
  • Click on a voice and press Play to preview it.
  • Check the boxes to the left of the ones you like. Then click OK.
Software Update will open and download your voices. Be warned, some of the files are huge. 

Saturday, July 9, 2011

How to Access the Amazon Appstore from Outside the USA

Setting up

Creating Your US Amazon Account

Firstly, to use the Amazon Appstore you need an account; it should be completely separate from your main account with a different e-mail address. To sign up just visit this sign in page and select ‘No, I am a new customer’, then enter the email address that you wish to use.

Enter email address and select 'new customer' to create an account

Setting Up a Billing Address

Next you will need a US shipping address which is the billing address needed for the account; you can do this at the Manage Address Book page and this must be a valid US address.
I recommend using Fake Name Generator because it gives you information for a random fake person, including a valid US address and much more information: all that you need to set up this account.
Alternatively you could just enter any US address because you’re not actually going to ship anything there, so ‘1 Infinite Loop Cupertino, CA 95014’ would work (this happens to be Apple’s HQ).

Setting Up a Phone Number

Again you will need a valid US phone number. There are multiple ways of doing this; I recommend using the site given above because it gives you a valid number that you don’t have to worry about. Alternatively you could just enter any number starting with +1

Setting Up a Payment Card

You need a valid US payment card, a number for which can be once again found on the link given above if you do not own one. Or you can just use one of these sample ones from Paypal.

Install the Appstore on Your Device

Now that you have set up your account, you will need to install the Appstore App on your device. You can download the APK from numerous places; opening this URL on your device will download it directly and from there is it simple to install.

Amazon Appstore working on my phone in the UK

Using the Appstore

Open the app and you are up and running and can now download that free app of the day and any other free apps. If you have set up the account with a valid payment card then paid apps will work and you can get those Angry Bird Ad-free apps, or any of those Amazon exclusive apps you’ve been salivating over (just me?). If the card information you entered was just from the random person website or anything else that is not a valid US account, to buy an app you will need to:
  • Purchase the app on the Amazon website or on your device – the initial payment will fail
  • Visit the Digital Orders Page and you will see your pending purchases
  • Choose the option to retry the purchases, this time using your non-US card
The payments will complete and you will be able to purchase paid apps.


So there we go. By following the fairly simple steps above, you too can use the Amazon Appstore outside the US. While I cannot confirm it will work in every country, I can see no reason why it wouldn’t (and it is definitely working here in the UK). I must reiterate that this is against Amazon’s Terms and Conditions, and that we take no responsibility for anything that occurs as a result of you doing this; we are simply showing you how to use the Appstore.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Create A Bootable Mac OS X 10.7 Lion Flash Drive

Apple has announced that with the release of Mac OS X 10.7 Lion, the operating system will be available only via download from the Mac App Store. Past versions of the Mac OS X operating system have always been available for purchase on a bootable DVD and with some systems like the MacBook Air, they’ve been included on a bootable USB drive. To create your own bootable USB device using your own flash drive (note that the device must be at least 4GB or larger), follow the instructions below.
1) Purchase and download Lion from the Mac App Store on any Lion compatible Mac running Snow Leopard.
2) Right click on “Mac OS X Lion” installer and choose the option to “Show Package Contents”

3) Inside the Contents folder, you will find a SharedSupport folder and inside the SharedSupport folder you will find the InstallESD.dmg. This is the 10.7 Lion boot disc image.

4) Copy InstallESD.dmg to another folder like the Desktop.  To do so, simply click and drag the file to the desired location while holding down the Option key.

5) Plug in the flash drive and launch Disk Utility (/Applications/Utilities).

6) Make sure the flash drive is properly formatted highlighting the flash drive at the left (make sure to select the device and not the volume shown under it) and clicking the Erase tab across the top right.  Then ensure that theFormat drop-down menu is set to Mac OS Extended (Journaled) and click the Erase button.  Confirm the dialog ensuring that you want to erase the device and all information on it (make sure you backup any existing information on the flash drive before this point).

7) Select the Partition tab on the top right.
Using the drop-down menu for Volume Scheme, choose 1 Partition as the partition scheme.

8) Highlight the partition by clicking on it in the space it is shown below the Volume Scheme drop-down and then click on Options underneath it.  Select GUID Partition Table and click OK. This will allow the Mac boot from the drive.
You may now name the device in the Name textbox. Insure that Format is set to Mac OS X Extended (Journaled). When you have finished, click the Apply button to format the USB device.  A warning will pop-up asking if you are sure you want to partition the media.  Click the Partition button to continue.

9) Click on the newly created volume listed under the USB device on the left. This volume will have the name of the device you set in the previous step.  Click the Restore tab at the top right.  In the Source area click the Image… button. Select the disk image InstallESD.dmg and click open (you may also drag-and-drop the disk image into the Source area).
In the Destination area, make sure that the USB device’s name is showing. If it isn’t, simply click and drag the volume from the list at the left into the destination area.  Click Restore and confirm the dialog informing you the volume will be erased.  You will be prompted to enter the admin password for your Mac and the process will begin.
The bootable USB device will be created and a progress bar will show the current status of the operation at the bottom of the screen.

10 ) When the operation is complete, you can verify that the flash drive is now bootable by selecting it and clicking the Info button in the upper left corner of the Disk Utility window.  Bootable status will show as Yes.
To boot from the USB device, simply hold down the Option key while your Mac is booting up. A screen will appear asking you which volume you would like to boot the system from. Click on the OS X installer USB drive and the system will boot using the USB stick. You will see faster boot speeds using the USB installer compared to a DVD installer disc.

Monday, July 4, 2011