Mac OS X is a very stable operating system, I very seldom experience any issues with it. If you do, consult my list of tips to get your borked OS X working again. But to keep things running well I would recommend you have a look at this list of utilities to keep your system running as smooth as a baby’s backside!
I have been a longtime Onyx user, and for good reason. This utility is an all-round superstar that can take care of just about any maintenance needed. Whether you want to run maintenance scripts, clean out caches, delete log files, verify and repair permissions and even clean out the Mozilla FullCircle crash report folder.
- Apple Backup
If you have subscribed to dotMac then you are eligible to download a copy of Apple Backup. I have been using this little app to backup my home directory on a weekly basis, which lets me sleep at night. If you are working for yourself and your data is precious to you, then I would highly recommend you get yourself a copy! You can set it up to backup a file or folder to a remote server, local director, CD or DVD at a time set by you. It could come in very very handy indeed.
If you have somehow managed to totally bork an application, then it’s time for you to get Pacifist. This neat little app allows you to open any .pkg package file, .dmg disk image, .tar, .tgz, or .tar.gz file. You can then drill down and find the file you need to replace on your system. In the past Pacifist has been played an instrumentl part in many Mac OS X hacks, including the now infamous FrontRow hack for Macs that do not support it out of the box.
- Disk Utility
Disk Utility comes free with Mac OS X and it comes in pretty useful. Some people think Disk Utility is a bit of a one-trick-pony (verify and repair permissions), but I say look again! Aside from that you can create your own password-protected disk images, partition disks into volumes, erase disks and volumes, burn CDs and DVDs, perform a restore from a backup and setup a RIAD scheme for high-speed data access. You can also boot your Mac from your OS X installation disk and use Disk Utility to perform the above.
Sometimes when you create an account you can pick a crap short user name, I know I’ve been caught out before with this. The problem is, changing the short user name in OS X is a lot more involved than you would think. I thought that a quick visit to the Accounts pane in System Preferences would do the trick, how wrong was I? So instead of blowing up your system, download ChangeShortName and save yourself a major headache! BTW, changing your long user name is easy.