Murphy Mac - Screencasts and Tutorials » Posts in 'Finder' category

Get Info Updates in Leopard

Get Info LeopardThe Get Info panel in Leopard’s Finder has some exciting new features. If you wanted to transfer an icon from one file to another in Tiger you had to open a Get Info panel for each file and copy-paste it. Now you can just drag the file to the destination file’s Get Info panel.

The panel also has a proxy icon in its title bar, so you can make a move, copy, or make an alias, right from the panel. Do you think that’s one of the 300 features?

The image for this post is one of the old, lame Get Info panels from Tiger. Notice the total lack of proxy icon.

Did you know you can drag files to the Preview icon in the panel too? You can add files to a folder by dragging them into the folder’s preview in the Finder Get Info panel.

Haven’t upgraded yet? I bet you will after seeing the screencast.

Watch Now | Permalink

Finding Disk Space Hogs

Your Mac has thousands of files tucked inside. Which files are taking up tons of space? It’s not always obvious as you peruse your home folder in the Finder.

Disk HogsYou could make a Smart Folder and tell it to show you files over a certain size. Or you could open the Inspector and click all over the place looking for a folder stuffed with nine hundred raw image files. But there’s another way.

Donation-ware Disk Inventory X is a handy little application for quickly spotting the space hogs on your Mac. The program creates a graphical representation – called a treemap – of your disk (disks) with larger files displayed as large color-coded blocks. Large folders are also readily apparent, with their contents shown as tiny little blocks.

The interface is well-designed – making it easy to hop around the large occupants on your drives. A path is displayed showing the location of a selected block. A floating window can provide detailed information about each file. Disk Inventory X also has options to reveal files in Finder or delete them through a handy control-click menu.

It’s not the only way to manage your disk space – but it’s fast and well-designed. If you need to find some quick candidates for deletion Disk Inventory X could be the tool you’re looking for.

Watch Now | Permalink

Custom DMG Background Image – New Version

This was Murphy’s second entry in the Macinstruct tutorial contest. Murphy didn’t win anything. Maybe next year. If you want to check out the winning entries follow this link and take a look at numbers 26, 6, and 18. They’re the winners. Congrats!

DMGWe posted something like this last year, but this screencast does things just a little bit differently. Instead of showing hidden files in Finder to set the background image Murphy uses the ln command in Terminal to create a soft link to the image file. One advantage is that you don’t have to go back and turn off the display of hidden files when you’re done.

Murphy thinks this is a great way to send someone files – if you know the recipient is using a Mac. Using your company logo as a background can give your materials that extra touch that sets them apart.

Click here to see Murphy’s original custom dmg post.

NOTE:  This isn’t working the same way in Leopard.  I don’t have a solution yet.

Watch Now | Permalink

New and Improved: Finder Emailing

Murphy posted about emailing from Finder a while back. This new screencast was entered in the Macinstruct tutorial contest, winner to be announced next week.

Finder MailerJust drag a file to a folder and it flies off to a pre-determined email address. Optionally, have the action prompt you for a subject so you can find it later.

Murphy finds this technique extremely useful for quickly backing up important files to a dummy Gmail account – especially with the new 20MB attachment size. You have files you can’t bring yourself to delete? Drag them to the folder and they’re on their way to a mail server, just in case you want them later. No addressing, no need to click send. It’s just sent. Murphy knows you can drag files to the Mail icon in the Dock. This is more direct – no extra clicks!

If you’ve got multiple assistants you send files to all the time you could create a folder for each. Dragging a file to their folder is like dragging it to their inbox.

The new screencast details both a Folder Action and an Automator solution. They achieve the same thing in terms of sending. The difference is that the Automator method leaves the file in its original location on your disk, which might be more convenient. But the Folder Action method can be utilized from an SSH session. That opens up a lot of possibilities and offers extra convenience.

The Automator solution comes from a post on TUAW that was inspired by a post on MacOSXHints that was submitted by Murphy. How’s that for a chain of events?

Visit the previous post to download the AppleScripts used in the screencast.

Watch Now | Permalink

Launching Applications From a Dock Folder

You can drop a folder on the Dock and create aliases for some of your frequently used Applications inside. Then when you click-and-hold on the folder you’ll get a pop-up list of the Applications so you can click-and-launch. You can create subfolders too – they’ll show up as fly-out menus when you access the folder from the Dock. Sort of like the Windows Start Menu.

Launch Applications from a Dock FolderThis is probably better than placing an alias for the entire Applications folder in the Dock because it will load more quickly. It’s also better than rearranging your Applications folder or moving its contents to other folders. Software Update expects certain applications to be in certain locations. And as we saw yesterday some applications can lose functionality if they’re moved from their default location.

Sometimes Murphy uses a Dock folder to launch applications. But usually he uses the Terminal, where he’s created a series of aliases for quickly launching applications. See the screencast Alias App Launcher for more details. Or take a look at Spotlight Application Launcher – that’s another screencast.

When you’re done adding your custom folder to the Dock you might want to change its icon.  Here’s a screencast for that.

Watch Now | Permalink