A mixed bag,…everything and the kitchen sync

Posted: December 19, 2007 in Mac OSX, software
Tags: , , ,

It’s been a while since i posted, mostly due to the oncoming holidays – i hesitate to call it a holiday season, as i’ve been corrected recently that “it is not a season, we have four seasons and none of them are named holiday”, but i digress. This post will be somewhat eclectic in it’s nature instead of just dealing with one subject as i am normally apt to do, but instead touches on a few favorite apps that i use almost daily.

I’ve been using the latest version of mac os X called “Leopard” and after a few updates and the usual growing pains have gotten to really like the new look and feel of it. so much so that when i use a pre-leopard mac it looks strange, tired, and old in comparison. Not only does it look prettier but the inner workings have been overhauled to make it faster and smoother and well, just more mac-like. I’ve said many times before – things on a mac just work, and leopard is another shining example of that.  anyone hesitating to upgrade shouldn’t wait any longer.

Parallels Desktop. this is a program i seem to use more just keeping windows on it up to date than actual working on it using windows programs. It’s handy to have and the ability to run windows apps without rebooting is nicer than Bootcamp-ing it, but it can be a bit of a hard-drive hog because of the rapidly expanding nature of the virtual HD’s. For anyone new to Parallels and VHD’s make sure you run the Parallels compressor once in a while – you’ll be amazed at how much space you can get back when it’s done. just be prepared for a very very long wait while it chugs away compressing.

This kinda brings me to my next point, which combines the first two nicely – i am the master of segues (and i don’t mean the two wheeled lazy persons standup thingy for zooming around town sucking on a non-fat low foam half caf latte). Part of OS X 5, Leopard, is Time Machine, and on top of having some of the coolest graphics it is quite easy to set up and use and as far as backup solutions go, this one is right up there with many of the paid solutions but best of all it’s free as part of the latest OS X. Anytime you can set up a program like this once and just let it do its thing without needing to remember to turn it on or off because you disconnected the external backup you are using, is good for me. i unmount the drive from my mac and take it home and the next day plug it back in and voila there’s Time Machine backing up again, right on schedule without a complaint. Sweet.

Yummy FTP: this little app made my life so much easier when it comes to keeping the company’s website up to date. The built in editor is everything i need, so much so in fact i blew away the other apps i was using to edit with, since they were a little long in the tooth and not as user friendly as i would like. Yummy FTP is so simplistic for both FTP-ing and editing that it has become one of my most used apps for keeping this website up to date and my real job’s website current as well.

And last but not least, speaking of apps, Silverkeeper. This is one of the most under-appreciated pieces of freeware i’ve come across for mac. I use it every week to keep my external drive synced with the network drives and it always works so smoothly and easily and allows you to save the settings so it will remember where the source and the target are, even if they are buried deep within a series of folders.

Happy ChristmasKwanzaaHanukkahFestivas to all!

– TCG
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