Utility software

Mac 911

Cleaner Palms

I’ve been syncing a Palm T3 with my PowerBook for a couple of months, and I now have duplicate entries on my Palm and the computer. How do I wipe the entire calendar clean on the Palm and then write just from the computer to the Palm?— From the Macworld.com forums

You have two options for wiping the Palm clean. One option is to disable syncing in iSync for all the devices from which you don’t want data erased—an iPod and a mobile phone, for example—and then choose Reset All Devices from iSync’s Devices menu. In the resulting dialog box, you can choose to replace the data on the remaining devices with the information on your Mac. Select Reset All, and your next HotSync will vaporize the contact and calendar data on the Palm and replace it with the information you’ve chosen to copy from Apple’s Address Book and iCal.

The other option is to remove your Palm device from iSync and then add it back using HotSync Manager. When you do so, you’ll see that the iSync window associated with the Palm lets you opt to erase data on the Palm during the first sync.

To accomplish this, select the Palm in iSync and choose Remove Device from the Devices menu. Launch HotSync Manager (inside the Palm folder within your Applications folder). Choose Conduit Settings from the HotSync menu, select iSync Conduit in the resulting Conduit Settings window, click on the Conduit Settings button, enable the Enable iSync For This Palm Device option, and click on OK. The Palm will reappear in iSync. Click on it, and you’ll see that a new For First Sync pop-up menu appears. Choose Erase Data On Device Then Sync from this pop-up menu. Initiate a HotSync, and the contact and calendar information you’ve chosen to copy from Address Book and iCal will overwrite the data on the Palm.

One more bit of advice: If your Palm device doesn’t work properly with Palm Desktop, take a look at Mark/Space’s $40 The Missing Sync for Palm OS. When Palm drops support for synchronizing your Palm in OS X (as it plans to do with future versions of Palm Desktop), The Missing Sync will be the way to coordinate your Palm and your Mac.

Pushing Print

How do I create a Print button in Safari’s Address Bar?— Noel Espinosa

A simple JavaScript will do the job. Just type

javascript:window.print()
in the Address field and drag the globe next to the field into the Bookmarks Bar. Enter a name for the script (
Print
, for instance) and click on OK. When you click on the new button, the Print sheet will appear. You can use the same method to open a new browser window—type
javascript:window.open()
.

Theme Scheme

In iMovie 4 and iDVD 4, how can you export a short iMovie to DVD without using built-in themes, chapter markers, and menus?— Dick Faris

You’ll need to make some adjustments to an iDVD theme and export your movie from iMovie without using the latter’s iDVD tab.

To make a completely themeless theme, create a white graphic file with a 4:3 aspect ratio—I do this by using Command-shift-4 to take a screenshot of a portion of a blank text document. Launch iDVD, click on the Customize button, and choose the Green Linen One theme. Click on the Settings button and drag your white graphics file into the Background field. Click on each text box in the theme and press the delete key. In the Text portion of the Customize drawer, select No Title from the Position pop-up menu. You now have a blank theme. Click on the Save As Favorite button at the bottom of the drawer to save your theme.

In iMovie, open the movie you want to export and then select Share from the File menu. Click on the QuickTime tab, choose Full Quality DV from the Compress Movie For pop-up menu, click on the Share button, and name and save your movie in the resulting Save dialog box.

You can now drag the movie file you exported into iDVD’s main window to add it to the project. If the point of your project is to create a looping kiosk presentation that the viewer can’t skip over, click on iDVD’s Map button, drag your movie into the box farthest to the left in the DVD Map window, and choose Loop Movie from the Advanced menu (see screenshot). This first box is generally reserved for the FBI warning material that automatically plays on commercial DVDs—a graphic or bit of video that a DVD player’s fast-forward or skip controls can’t influence. When you loop your movie, it will play over and over again.

Photo Finish

Can I import the still images I make in iMovie as photos to iPhoto or Adobe Photoshop?— Yves Nadon

Absolutely, but the resulting pictures will be slightly pixelated. If you have the option of using an original still from a digital camera, do so. If not—say, if the only picture you have of your dear departed armadillo is from a movie—follow this procedure:

Move iMovie’s playhead to the frame you want to export, and choose Save Frame As from the File menu. In the resulting sheet, name your picture, save it as a JPEG file, and click on Save. You can save it as a PICT file rather than a JPEG, but frames exported as JPEGs are less pixelated than their PICT counterparts.

Variable Volume

Is it possible to format a partition on an external FireWire hard drive so that both a Mac and a Windows PC can open files on that drive?— Sam Gerstenzang

If you mean “carve up the hard drive so that one partition is formatted as a Windows NTFS volume and another is formatted as a Mac OS Extended volume,” I haven’t come across a scheme that works. You can, however, take advantage of OS X’s tolerance of Windows’ FAT32 format to create a hard drive that’s compatible with both Mac OS and Windows.

To format such a hard drive, plug it into your Mac and launch Disk Utility (Applications: Utilities). Click on the FireWire drive’s name (the entry that lists the drive’s manufacturer rather than the name you’ve given the drive) in the first pane of the Disk Utility window, and then click on the Erase tab. Choose MS-DOS File System from the Volume Format pop-up menu and click on the Erase button. This formats the drive as a FAT32 volume that will mount on both the Mac and a Windows PC.

This technique has a couple of gotchas you should be aware of. The first is that the Mac won’t recognize more than 128GB of storage on the drive if it’s formatted this way, so don’t bother purchasing a humongous drive. Second, Windows won’t let you use certain characters when naming files. They include the question mark (?), square brackets ([ and ]), slashes (/ and \\), equal sign (=), plus sign (+), angle brackets (< and >), semicolon (;), quotation mark ("), and comma (,). Windows NT Server also demands that you not end a file or volume name with a period or a space.

Alternatively, you can force the PC to recognize a Mac OS Extended volume by installing Mediafour’s $50 MacDrive 5 on the PC. This utility allows Windows PCs to mount drives formatted for the Macintosh.

[ Contributing Editor Christopher Breen is the author of Secrets of the iPod , fifth edition (Peachpit Press, 2004). ]

Sidebar: Tip of the Month

Full-Screen QuickTime

The free version of QuickTime Player will not play full-screen movies—unless you know this trick. Launch AppleScript’s Script Editor (Applications: AppleScript) and enter the following script:

tell application "QuickTime Player"

activate

present

end tell

Then save the script as an application. Open a movie file in QuickTime Player and run the script by double-clicking on it. Your movie will fill the screen.— Nathaniel Black

Sidebar: Unsolicited Advice

Miraculous iTunes

AirPort Express—Apple’s portable wireless base station, which can also stream music between an AirPort-enabled Mac and your home stereo—is darned close to a miracle. But its miraculous musical nature so overwhelms some people that they fail to explore the cooler capabilities provided by iTunes.

For example, you can stream music stored on an iPod attached to your Mac by flipping that iPod into Manual mode (via the iPod Preferences window), selecting a song or playlist on the iPod, and clicking on iTunes’ Play button. You can also create an EQ setting in iTunes so that when music streams to your stereo, music with that EQ will play on its remote speakers—a real boon if you have speakers that need a little nudge on the low or high end. Finally, if you have a music recorder of some kind attached to your stereo—a Minidisc or cassette deck, for example—you can use it to record music streamed from the Internet radio stations included with iTunes.

Configure iDVD with a looped movie in the Map window’s first slot for a never-ending kiosk presentation.

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