Mac OS X Panther Hacks
100 Industrial Strength Tips & Tools
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
Final Release Date: June 2004
Pages: 592

Like the animal it's named for, Mac OS X Panther is beautiful, sleek, superbly efficient, dangerously alluring, and all muscle under the surface. Beneath its appealing interface, it's a hard-working machine. Those coming to Mac OS X from previous incarnations of the operating system recognize much of the friendly face of the Macintosh they're used to, but they're also plunged into a whole new world. Unix converts to Mac OS X find a familiar FreeBSD-like operating system at the core and many of the command-line applications that they're familiar with: it's like an open invitation to roll up their sleeves and hack.Mac OS X Panther Hacks brings together the perfect combination of tips, tricks, and tools to help serious Mac users--regardless of their background--get the most from their machines. This revised collection reflects the real-world know how of those well-steeped in Unix history and expertise, sharing their no-nonsense, sometimes quick-and-dirty solutions to administering and taking full advantage of everything a Unix desktop has to offer: Web, Mail, and FTP serving, security services, SSH, Perl and shell scripting, compiling, configuring, scheduling, networking, and hacking. Add to that the experience of die-hard Macintosh users, customizing and modifying their hardware and software to meet their needs. The end result is cool stuff no power user should be without.The hacks in the book range from the quick and easy to the more complex. Each can be read easily in a few minutes, saving countless hours of searching for the right answer. Mac OS X Panther Hacks provides direct, hands-on solutions in topics such as:

  • User Interface
  • Accessories (iPod, USB devices, mobile phones, PDAs, etc.)
  • Wired and wireless networking (Ethernet, WiFi, Bluetooth, etc.)
  • Email (servers and clients)
  • Web (servers and clients)
  • Messaging (iChat and associated apps)
  • Printing and Faxing (sharing printers, fax server, etc.)
  • Multimedia
If you want more than your average Mac user--you want to explore and experiment, unearth shortcuts, create useful tools, and come up with fun things to try on your own--this book will set you on the right track. Written for users who need to go beyond what's covered in conventional manuals--Mac OS X Panther Hacks will bring your Mac to its full potential.
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5.0

Best book yet on OS X!

By swasko

from Undisclosed

Comments about oreilly Mac OS X Panther Hacks:

This is a great book! Having been a PC user for nearly fifteen years, I'm always looking for ways to juice more value out of my platform and applications.

Being a new switcher to Mac this year, this is just the book I was looking for to help me personalize OS X and make it my own.

The author covers all the bases and presents in a very fun, informative, and educational way. Topics from having more fun with your digital lifestyle to combining Apple scripting, perl scripting, and shell scripting to make your system do amazing things.

This is probably the best computing book I've read in years, and I read a lot!

(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

From a newbie

By Mary Dixon

from Undisclosed

Comments about oreilly Mac OS X Panther Hacks:

Being a relative newbie to the Mac compared to so many folks, I felt in the dark about all the little things that make a Macintosh what it is...the best personal computer bar none. Knowing so little about it compared to so many other long time users, I was quite anxious to learn all I could as fast as I could. Part of my difficulty includes about twelve years using another platform which so many others blindly use. This gave me enough knowhow to provide support to many other people. Since I'm not one to leave well enough alone, I am always pushing my computer to the max and getting more out of it than many other people might expect.

Mac OS X Panther Hacks, by Rael Dornfest and James Duncan Davidson and published by O'Reilly, provided me with more of an inside look and helped to give me what I had on the other platform...the ability to do things more efficiently and to do things that other users might not know about. I wanted to get into the "guts" of the Mac and Mac OS X Panther Hacks is helping me to achieve that goal.

Whether you are a newcomer to the Macintosh or a long time user, after getting into this Hacks book, you are bound to find something of use. There are one hundred hacks nicely numbered and arranged so you can read one at a time and know which one it was or read it by sections. The sections are arranged nicely into chapters according to the types and uses.

Once cracking this book open, it didn't take me long to have a "eureka!" experience. "I didn't know I could do that!" I heard myself say to myself. I learned something new that I bet no one else knows....or do they?

My favorite hack so far is using the services menu under the application menu. It's an amazing thing and has been used more often than anything else I read in the book. The next thing I'm going to do is use more scripting and attach those scripts to my file folders. Fortunately, the authors provide lots of great examples. Whew...I don't "do" Apple scripting.....yet. I will after reading this book.

The authors don't exclude the use of other applications in "hacking" the OS but they sure do provide a lot of helpful ways to use them. My very favorite hack in that way was their suggestion to "Clutter Your Desktop with Music." In that hack, #42, they suggest using a little iTunes add on called Clutter. Ohh...I don't want to give all of it away. I want everyone to have a copy of this book. You just have to use this little app. It's a great helper if you love your iTunes.

Some of these chapters will require return visits for me as I managed to find out that I knew very little about some aspects of "hacking" Panther. The book now resides on my desktop and will for the foreseeable future.

No one will lose by getting Mac OS X Panther Hacks and will surely be surprised at what they don't know when they get through this wonderful volume. Be sure to check one out for yourself very soon. You won't regret it.

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