Posted by: evtechie | December 17, 2008

New Mac User Tips

As I prepared a new Mac for a client (as a gift for their college bound son) I wrote up a list of those little things that took us time to figure out but are so helpful to know right off the bat!

  • Connecting to a wireless internet –the MacBook is sort of weird to connect to 64-bit encrypted networks. By default it asks for a password – and you must add 0x (zero + X) to the beginning of the passkey in the password box: (0x1a2b3c4e5f) to make it work. This is something I see as a bit counter intuitive to how Macs typically work.
  • Most programs are easy to install, when you put anything in your computers CD drive it will show up on the desktop. Just double click. Sometimes:
  • It shows you the application in a new window with a picture of your Applications folder and an arrow – just drag/drop the icon of the application onto the picture of the app folder and it will install.
  • It shows you an installer program with prompts – that is much easier. To get the app on your bar, if it doesn’t ask, just follow directions above.
  • Your new applications WON’T automagically show up on your dock below – you will have to double click your Macintosh HD–> Application Folder –> Find the program and drag/drop to your dock below.
  • To remove applications from the dock that you don’t want to use, just click/drag them to the desktop and in a “poof” they will be gone (not uninstalled – just off the dock)
  •  Use Command+Q to QUIT applications – just clicking the little red ball on the top right corner does not close out an application.
  • You can also do a CONTROL+Click on applications in the dock below to get a menu of items to launch for each application including to FORCE a QUIT when something freezes up.
  • Use Control+Click in Word and other applications where you need to correct spelling – it will give you the list of fix-its.
  •  The drop down menu’s for applications are now at the very top, and to switch applications just look at the dock below and the app will have a little glow light under it to indicate it is still running – clicking it launches the menu bar for that application. REMEMBER the little red dot does not quit apps.
  • Under the Apple at the top left is System Preferences that will allow you to customize your MacBook (desktop, colors, display, sharing, mouse, keyboard, etc)
  • When you have a mouse connected ask the MacBook to disable the touchpad – found under Trackpad in the System Preferences under the Apple (Apple –> System Preferences –> Trackpad)
  • Other useful settings for the trackpad:
         -+-  use two fingers on the trackpad to scroll
         -+- tap two fingers on the trackpad to Right click
  • ALWAYS install updates your system recognizes.
  • When browsing the web, to erase and rewrite in the address bar – triple click to highlight it all quickly

Command +S = Save
Command +C = Copy
Command +V= Paste
Command +X= Cut
Command +P= Print
Command +A= Select All
Command +F= Find
Command +Z= Undo
Command +Y= Redo
Command +T= New Tab


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