The 5 best tips and hacks for Mac OS X Leopard

Changing a Leopard's spotsIt’s two weeks since Leopard landed and the general opinion surrounding the new version of Mac OS is pretty positive (bar the odd exception!). With a fairly large install base, a load of useful tips and tricks are beginning to emerge which range from reverting to a Tiger-style dock to making sure your Leopard install runs well. Here’s my run-down of the 5 best tips and hacks I’ve seen so far:

  • Make sure you update (or better still: remove) 3rd party apps before upgrading to Leopard. While the two updates I’ve performed haven’t suffered any problems at all, a number of people are complaining of a freeze/blue screen of death after the installation process completes. Apple says this is caused by some 3rd party application enhancers. If you’ve suffered with this problem, check out this handy post for advice on how to fix it.
  • Leopard features much better controls for folder sharing and connecting to network shares. You can now control exactly which folders are to be shared, as well as which user can do what to their contents. Additionally, the ‘Shared’ item in Finder’s sidebar now shows automatically detected network shares: nice! Check out System Preferences > Sharing for more.
  • When browsing files in Finder, press the option key before clicking to jump straight into a presentation of all the files in the folder. Option-spacebar works too.
  • Create and resize disk partitions on the fly, without needing to erase your disk’s contents. Especially useful for anyone working with swap-intensive apps.
  • If you really can’t stand the new Dock and Menu Bar, you can easily get rid of them. For the Dock, look here for a simple guide. For the Menu Bar, Peter Krantz links to a downloadable hack which will fix the transparency issue, as well as suggesting a solution which is both novel and old-school!

More tips coming next week!

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