Check tutorial of 6 of the Best Simple Tips for OS X Mavericks
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OS X Mavericks is an excellent update for Mac users that has a lot of great things features, but while the free update is aimed at power users with many advanced behind-the-scenes improvements, that doesn’t mean all tricks are complex. In fact some of the best features those new to Mavericks are some of the easiest to use, and we’re going to cover six of the absolute best simple ones tips you can now start using.
1: Open New Finder Tabs with Command + T
If you are one of those users who turn up with tons and tons of Finder windows open, you’ll love Finder tabs, which will give you a single Finder window to keep them all:
- From a Finder window, press Command + T to create a new tab or click on it [+] icon
Finder tabs work just like tabs in a web browser, and you can open any tab to a different location on the Mac file system, with full drag and drop support between them.
2: Quickly see which apps are draining the battery
Portable Mac users will love these because now the Battery menu bar in OS X will tell you which apps are using a lot of power.
- If you are running on battery power, open the battery menu and look under ‘Apps that use significant power’
You then want to take action accordingly by closing the app, completing the process, closing the browser tab that is eating resources, or whatever.
This is basically a super easy-to-use method for seeing what’s using excessive system resources without going to Activity Monitor, and if an app is listed in this menu, it will likely negatively impact battery life.
3: Rely on App Nap to save battery life and power consumption
Apps left inactive in OS X Mavericks automatically suspend themselves, drastically reducing system resource usage and power consumption. This is all handled intelligently behind the scenes with a great feature called App Nap, and using it is so simple: leave a background app idle for a while, and App Nap will start pausing that app process until it becomes active again. The result is vastly improved battery life, and between this and the aforementioned menu bar trick, you can largely say goodbye to those background apps that undermine your battery life.
For those curious how this works, it actually looks like the advanced command line kill -STOP trick we showed you, except that no user intervention is required, and obviously no use of the terminal. A similar feature, but App Nap is fully automated and very user-friendly and regulates every energy-consuming application usage, be it CPU (processor) usage, network activity and even reading and writing disks.
4: Reschedule app update reminders
You can now reschedule app update reminders and notification alerts right from the alert window itself – yes, that means no more having to swipe the same notification every 15 minutes!
- When the “Updates available” warning appears up, click on “Later”
- Choose one of three delay options: ‘Try in an hour’, ‘Try tonight’, ‘Remind me tomorrow’
This is a huge relief to those annoyed by the bullying software update warnings and their frequent whining about earlier versions of OS X.
Of course you can always choose to ‘install’ the update as well, but in the middle of the working day that is usually annoying, leading us to the next great trick.
5: Set apps to update automatically or not
You can now set your Mac apps to automatically update themselves in the background. This completely prevents visits to the App Store Updates section to install yourself, and it can be tweaked to automatically handle individual apps or system and security updates or both.
- Open System Preferences from the Apple menu and go to the “App Store” settings
- Select the ‘Automatically check for updates’ check box
- Selectively enable the other options based on your individual preferences:
- “Download newly available updates in the background” – pretty self-explanatory, but if this is enabled, the updates will download themselves and then prompt you to install them unless the following option is enabled, which will then also install automatically
- ‘Install app updates’ – in conjunction with the previous setting, this downloads and installs app updates as they become available, fully automated and behind the scenes
- “Install system data files and security updates” – We highly recommend that you leave this enabled and enabled, even if you do not want your apps to be installed automatically, it is a good idea to install security updates automatically
For those of us who leave our Macs on all the time and basically never shut down or sleep, this is a particularly good one featurebecause it takes away some of the tedious work required to update your apps and make sure everything is up to date.
On a side note, this feature also exists in iOS mobile world from the 7.0 update and later, but it makes much more sense on the desktop where users are typically connected to Wi-Fi, while in the mobile world it can cause inappropriate mobile data usage and battery drain. Therefore, we recommend for iPhone and iPad users to keep it feature turned off to save battery, but on the Mac it makes more sense to leave it on.
6: Add tags to documents while saving
Finder tags are basically renamed Finder tags and much better system integration, and the ability to add these tags to documents on save is a huge benefit that makes it an excellent new addition to OS X Mavericks. Using tags when saving files is one of the best ways to get started:
- When saving a document as usual, click under the file name section in the “Tags” section and enter your tags – aim for current and descriptive tags
- Save as usual
Using descriptive topics like tags is a great way to go, and things like class names, work, project names, recipes, taxes, banking, just select tags that define the document topic, you get the idea.
You can then retrieve all the files using those tags in the Finder from the sidebar or with Finder search. Sorting or collecting with folders is not necessary.
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