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OS X Tutorials

How to Connect to Hidden Wireless Networks

Need to connect your Mac to a wireless network? You know the drill. Click on the wireless menu bar icon, select an available network, and your Mac automatically connects. But what about connecting to wireless networks that are hidden? The hidden wireless networks won't appear in the list, so you'll need to use a different method to connect to one of those networks.

Here's how to connect your Mac to a hidden wireless network:

  1. From the wireless menu (on the menu bar), select Join Other Network, as shown below.

Check the Available Hard Drive Space on a Mac

Ever wonder how much free space is available on your Mac's hard disk or partitions? It's easy to check in OS X. Plus, if your Mac is running Mac OS 10.7 or later, the interface shows which types of files are taking up the most space, a feature that could help you track down space-hogging files and applications.

How to Hide and Show Purchases in the Mac App Store

Did you purchase an "embarrassing" application from the Mac App Store? Want to hide the fact that you downloaded it? Thanks to an obscure feature, you can. The Mac App Store lets you hide applications you've purchased so they don't show up in the Purchases list. It's a great way to cover your tracks so other users in your house can't see exactly what you downloaded.

Note: Hiding a purchase in the Mac App Store does not uninstall the application. It just hides the record that you've purchased the application.

How to Hide Purchases in the Mac App Store

How to Reinstall Apps from the Mac App Store

The Mac App Store is a good way to find applications for your Mac - maybe a little too good, in fact. The applications you download from the App Store can start to accumulate, and over time you may need to start deleting them. But feelings change. If you want to reinstall an application that you downloaded from the App Store and then later deleted, this is the tutorial for you.

How to Burn a Data CD or DVD in Mac OS X

Burning a data a CD or DVD is no longer as popular as it once was. Chalk it up to high-speed Internet connections, cloud storage services, USB drives, and other technologies that have made massive data transfer easy and dirt-cheap. Nevertheless, there are still times when you'll need to burn a data CD or DVD with your Mac. The resulting disc can be used on Mac, Windows, and Linux computers.

Here's how to burn a data CD or DVD in Mac OS X:

  1. Insert a blank CD or DVD into your Mac's drive. The window shown below appears.

How to Show Hidden Files on Your Mac

You wouldn't know it by using the Finder, but your Mac has thousands of hidden files that can't be found or accessed using conventional methods, like opening a folder or searching with Spotlight. Most of these secret files are hidden from view to protect the innocent. Apple doesn't want new users poking around in the /sbin directory, because there's no real reason why they would need to access it. But advanced users may want to see all of the files on their Mac, for whatever reason.

Here's how to show hidden files on your Mac:

How to Restore from a SuperDuper! Backup

You made backups with a third-party application called SuperDuper!. Now maybe the time has come to transfer your backup onto another hard drive. Maybe the unthinkable happened and your primary hard drive failed. Or maybe you just replaced your primary hard drive with a new, larger drive. Whatever the case, you need restore from your SuperDuper! backup.

How to Schedule SuperDuper! Backups

Automation is an important part of any backup system. With a third-party application called SuperDuper!, you can schedule automatic backups of your Mac's hard drive. This is a great feature that takes all of the guesswork out of making backups - you don't have to do anything except make sure that your backup drive is connected to your Mac.

How to Update a SuperDuper! Backup

Regularly updating the backups of your Mac's hard drive is essential. If you've already created a backup of your hard drive with an application called SuperDuper!, it's easy to update. The smart update feature allows SuperDuper! to compare the current files on your hard drive with the files in your backup. If the files have been modified, SuperDuper! copies those files - and those files only - to the backup drive.

How to Test Your SuperDuper! Backup

If you use SuperDuper! to back up your hard drive, you should test the backup disk to make sure it worked. (See Back Up (Clone) Your Mac's Hard Drive with SuperDuper! for instructions on backing up your computer with SuperDuper!) Since SuperDuper! creates an exact copy of your primary hard drive, you can set the backup drive as your startup disk and try booting your computer from it.

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