Written for folks who want to master more of the basics, the Macworld Mac Basics Superguide covers finding your way around on a Mac, using the Dock, configuring your Mac, printing, searching, security, troubleshooting, running Windows, and more. You'll find getting-started tips on using Safari, Mail, iCal, iChat, Preview, QuickTime Player, Image Capture, among others, and you'll learn how to install and update software. Bonus! Includes descriptions of 20 useful third-party utilities that can enhance your Macintosh experience!
Read this ebook to learn the answers to questions such as: • How do I add and remove items from the Dock? • What's the deal with user accounts and logging in? • How do I set up my screen saver? • Can I hide an application instead of quitting it? • What are the best places to save files? • What should I do if an application crashes? • What should I do about viruses and other security problems?
Table of Contents
Mac OS X at a Glance
• Cheat Sheet Wondering where your applications are? Not sure where to find your Home folder? This cheat sheet will help you identify OS X's main interface elements.
• The Finder
• Parts of the Finder The Finder is the navigation portal into your Mac. Discover how it works and what its different elements do. Get to know the Finder's various view options: cover flow, icon, list, and column.
• Get Oriented Use the Finder to keep your files and folders organized, locate applications, and be more efficient with your Mac. To get started, become familiar with your Mac's user folder structure.
• Easy Finder Tricks Once you know the basics of the Finder, you can add these fun and helpful Finder tricks to your arsenal. Get more information about files, preview their contents, and set up shortcuts.
• Deploy the Dock Access important files and applications quickly by storing them in the Dock-- the thin reflective shelf filled with icons at the bottom of your screen.
• Customize the Dock Make your Dock work for you by customizing it: pick what applications, files, and folders you can access from there. You can even change the icon sizes and move your Dock around the screen.
• System Preferences
• Working with Preferences One of the best parts of a Mac is how customizable it is. We'll show you how to access and use preferences and adjust them to suit your setup.
• Customize Your System These are some of the more helpful systemwide preferences and hints on how to use them.
• Types of Accounts Wield the power of OS X's user accounts. Learn about the four kinds and see what each is capable of.
• Creating Accounts With these instructions it will be a breeze to create and modify user accounts on your Mac.
• Work with Multiple Users Once all of your accounts are set up you can share files between users, quickly switch between accounts, and retrieve lost passwords.
• Set Parental Controls If you share your Mac with kids, you'll want to take advantage of OS X's Parental Controls, which let you limit what they access and set time limits for how long they can use your computer.
Working with Files
• Open and Save Files Preview a file or open it with the application of your choice. You can also save a file, rename it, and get to know its custom menu-bar options.
• Navigate Applications Snow Leopard has three indispensable tools for managing and navigating between open applications: Spaces, Expose, and Application Switcher.
• Automate with Services Don't do more work than you have to. Automate those repetitive and click-intensive tasks with Services, a handy feature that has been greatly improved in Snow Leopard.
• The Basics of Printing This section shows you how to get your printer connected, tweak its settings, and share it with other computers on your network.
• Solving Printer Problems Even the simplest task, printing a document, can turn complicated fast. Find out how to troubleshoot your printer with these common fixes.
Get Started with OS X Apps
• Installing, Deleting, and Updating Programs While your Mac comes with many of Apple's great programs preinstalled, there's also a ton of great software you can add. Here are the basics on how to install, update, and delete programs on your Mac.
• Safari Apple's built-in Web browser Safari is your portal into the Internet. Get the most out of the new Safari 4 by learning how to use its many features, including managing top sites and bookmarks and browsing with tabs.
• Mail With OS X's e-mail program, you can manage multiple accounts, banish spam, and check the news with the built-in RSS feeder. Snow Leopard even offers support for Exchange accounts.
• iCal Keep on schedule with iCal. Create and share events and stay organized with To Do lists. iCal is even adept at managing multiple calendars.
• iChat Feeling talkative? iChat lets you share more than words with other users--you can also share photos, videos, and files.
• Preview Preview is the fast way to open images and PDFs. You can make minor edits, crop, and print from Preview, too.
• QuickTime Player With Snow Leopard's video playback application, QuickTime, you can enjoy movies, share videos, and record your Mac's screen.
• Image Capture OS X's Image Capture is surprisingly powerful. You can grab images from your digital camera, scanner, or memory cards.
• Smaller Programs Snow Leopard has many small but useful applications installed, including Dashboard, Dictionary, Font Book, Stickies, and Text Edit.
Searching Your Mac
• Using the Spotlight Menu The Spotlight menu is a one-stop Mac searching tool. Find files, applications, e-mails, and anything else you think of from your menu bar.
• Creating Smart Queries There are a lot of files on your Mac, and sorting through them can take time. Find what you're looking for quickly using phrases and Boolean operators.
• Performing Advanced Searches with the Finder Having trouble finding exactly what you want? For complex searches, switch to the Finder window, where you can set up multiple criteria.
Mac Security Essentials
• Be Safe with Passwords The most important step in keeping your data and computer safe is creating smart passwords. In OS X, that means using Keychain Access. Take advantage of these tips to protect your secrets and create unguessable passwords.
• Lock Up Your Data Encrypting your data is a smart way to keep your files hidden from prying eyes and computer thieves.
• Make Safe Connections Wi-Fi is convenient, but making the wrong kind of connection can open up your system to hackers and snoops. Here's how to protect your connections using the OS X firewall and common sense.
• Protect Your Mac Online Don't fall for phishers, hackers, or scammers. Follow these rules to make sure your interactions on the Internet don't end in disaster.
Troubleshooting Your Mac
Back Up with Time Machine Running regular backups is the most important part of a Mac maintenance plan. If something goes wrong, you'll be able to get back up and running quickly. Thankfully, OS X's Time Machine program makes backing up all of your data easy.
• Recover from Crashes Backing up your files won't actually prevent disasters from happening. If your applications freeze or your computer crashes, try these time-tested remedies one at a time to revive your Mac.
• Seek Outside Help When Mac problems are beyond your repair abilities, turn to one of these dependable sources for help.
Switching from Windows
• Transferring Your Data Learn how to bring your files over from your PC.
• Replacing Windows Software You don't have to give up your favorite Windows programs just because you're switching to a Mac.
• Bringing Windows with You If you still need to use Windows from time to time, you don't need a second computer. You can now run Windows directly on your Mac.
• Mac Gems These inexpensive programs can pick up where OS X leaves off, helping you be more productive, keep an eye on your system, and save time.