Exclude directories from Spotlight

Your Mac’s Spotlight application might be one of the most underrated part of the OS X ecosystem. Spotlight indexes all the content on your Mac, making it simple to find documents and data that might be buried deep within your file system.

It’s so fast, I’ve started using it to quickly pull up contact cards. It’s so much more efficient than starting up the Contacts app and digging through people’s names.

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Airmail 2.0 screenshot

The latest version of the  versatile email client, Airmail 2.0, was released recently. I’ve been considering switching from Apple’s default mail app for some time now, and with this new version of Airmail I decided to jump ship.

The problem is, every time you click on a web link in your browser, Mail.app automatically fires itself up. Very irritating! So how do you set up Airmail (or an alternative email client) as your default in Mac OS X?Continue reading

Mac OS DVD autoplay settings

One annoying aspect of Mac OS X is the way is automatically launches the DVD player whenever you insert a DVD in the drive. You might not be ready to watch the movie right away or you may be planning to make a backup of the disc using Handbrake or something else.

You can easily disable the autoplay feature on your MacBook. Follow these simple step-by-step instructions:

  1. Click the Apple icon at the top of your screen and open the System Preferences applet. Browse to CDs and DVDs.
  2. In the When you insert a video DVD section, set it to Ignore. This will stop the MacBook autoplaying media, leaving you to choose which application to launch.
  3. Alternatively, if you want to use a different programme to view DVDs, drop down the menu and choose Open other application. Browse for the application you want.
  4. Close the System Preferences applet when you’re finished. Job done.

While you’re browsing the DVD and CD settings, you can also play around with the settings for music and photo discs. But does anybody actually use those things anymore?

Apple LogoIf you’re a terminal warrior like me, you’ll occasionally need to reboot the OS X network interface. There’s a quick way to do this through the command line – but first you need to know the identity of your network interface.

Run the ifconfig command in your terminal and find the interface with an IP address attached to it. On my MacBook Pro, the ethernet interface is en0 while the wireless interface is en1.  Yours may be similar.

Shutting down the network interface

Now that you’ve identified the interface, shutting it down and restarting it is a breeze. Run this command:

sudo ifconfig en0 down

And to start things back up again…

sudo ifconfig en0 up

That’s it. It’s a simple command that’s worth remembering – or bookmarking!

Apple MacBook Pro

Apple MacBook ProIf you’re a power multi-tasker, switching between open application windows is essential. On a Windows machine, ALT+Tab is your friend here, allowing you to switch between any open applications.

While COMMAND+Tab still works on Mac OS X, you’ll find that it doesn’t work when you try to switch between windows in the same program. For instance, if you’ve got two browser windows open – one for researching, one for drafting. Or maybe you want to switch between messages and the inbox in the Mail app.

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