I’ve been using the OS X Time Machine for over 2 years now, and it has proven itself to be hassle free and easy to use.
I found a few tweaks though I would like to share with you. Applying them might make your Time Machine backup even faster, and also smaller.
In the Time Machine Preferences I’ve excluded some directories for backup.
To do this, go to your Time Machine preferences and click the “Options” (or Opties, in Dutch) button:
The following screen appears:
As you see, I’ve added some directories which I do not need Time Machine to handle, because I take care of the backups myself. Simply press the “+” sign button and enter a location.
Other locations only contain cachefiles, which are ok to loose in case of emergency. The most important are:
This contains all the OS X cachefiles (for user data and application data). They help you speed up OS X performance, but will be rebuild when they are deleted or lost. Because this directory may contain gigabytes of data, it’s a good candidate for exclusion. I read somewhere the caches directories are already excluded by TM by default. Ah well, better be safe than sorry.
When you use Adobe Lightroom, you may also want to exclude the Lightroom Catalog Previews. The filename may have a slightly different name on your system, but it is located in your Lightroom catalog directory, probably something like:
<your lightroom catalog path>/Lightroom 2 Catalog Previews.lrdata
This file contains a preview cache for your Lightroom images, is at least hundreds of megabytes in size and changes everytime you open a file in Lightroom.
Another culprit for filling up your backup drive really quickly is iTunes’ Podcasts directory. Exclude it and it’ll save you at least a few hunderd megs.
Additionally, you can do the same for your Garageband data ( /Library/Application Support/Garageband ) and iPhoto themes ( /Library/Application Support/iPhoto ). Don’t worry, you can reinstall them from your iLife disc, if necessary.
Last week I installed OS X Lion, which was great fun. I’m not going to say it is revolutionary, but it certainly has some nice improvements. One particular issue often mentioned on the internet, is that some software stops working on OS X Lion or Mountain Lion.
I needed Oracle SQL Developer, so downloaded the installer from Oracle Technet. To my surprise, it wouldn’t start. It would be very inconvenient if SQL Developer would be broken under OS X for me! After some research I found that OS X Lion does not have a Java Runtime, and SQL Developer does need one.
You might want to check your log files too. I found that SQL Developer generated a whopping 30 gigabytes of logfiles when it couldn’t find the java runtime.
Installing is simple. Go to your terminal, enter java -version and press enter. Voila, OS X asks if you want to install the JRE. Of course you want to! Press Yes and you’re all set to go. Enjoy.
When you quickly want to create an ISO image from a CD or DVD disk, simply do the following:
- insert the disk in your optical drive (yeah, I know this is obvious!)
- open the Disk Utility (Schijfhulpprogramma in Dutch)
- Go to Folder in the menu (Archief in Dutch)
- Then select New > Image from “<diskname>” (Nieuwe > Schijfkopie van “<schijfnaam>” in Dutch)
- Choose the options “Dvd/cd-master” with encoding “None” (Schijfkopiestructuur and Codering in Dutch). Save it to your Desktop (default location), and give a name, for instance DiskImage
- The Disk Utility will create a DiskImage.cdr at your desktop. Grab a coffee, there’s plenty of time.
- Now we will convert it to an image, with some help from the command prompt.
- Open a terminal window. Type Command+Space, then type Terminal, and press enter.
- In the terminal window, type the following commands:
cd ~/Desktop hdiutil makehybrid -iso -ov DiskImage.iso DiskImage.cdr
This will take a few minutes, again. When it is finished, you may close the terminal.
If you foresee that you will need this disk in a Windows environment, you might want to consider making a joliet hybrid.
To do this, change the command above to the following:
cd ~/Desktop hdiutil makehybrid -iso -joliet -ov DiskImage.iso DiskImage.cdr
You’re done! Now you have created an iso image of your disk. You can write it to a recordable at a later time, or open it directly bij doubleclicking the file. This works in both OS X and Ubuntu Linux. Windows has no built-in solution for opening .ISO files.
Now that I discovered the site, the hype is probably already over it’s top. But I find it intriguing. You buy a bundle of Mac OS X applications with a huge discount. And you support some charity organizations along the way. And if you’re lucky, some apps wil be added along the way. Because a minimum number of downloads is reached, or just for fun. And of course, the offer is limited.
And they call it Macheist. At the time of writing they’re offering a Nanobundle. I’m still not sure what’s the difference between the nanobundles and the regular ones, but I’ll find out in time.
Check it out at http://www.macheist.com and see for yourself if the $20 is well spent on this software collection. And if the requirements will be met for Monkey Island, of course!