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System configurations: Examples


From:

Unix for Mac OS X Users

with Kevin Skoglund

Video: System configurations: Examples

In this movie, I want to show you a few of the most popular system configuration changes. The first one will show all the dot files in the Finder. Remember that by default the Finder hides all our dot files so that we can't see them, but we could change that behavior. If we want to make them visible we'd say defaults write com.apple. Finder and then ShowAllFiles true. If you ever decide you want to turn it off again, ShowAllFiles false. Or if you want the Unix path to display in the Finder windows up at the top, well its default is write com.apple. Finder, and then _FXShowPosixPathInTitle using all the correct capitalization, and then -bool TRUE, setting a Boolean to true.
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  1. 3m 57s
    1. Introduction
      1m 14s
    2. Using the exercise files
      2m 43s
  2. 32m 2s
    1. What is Unix?
      7m 27s
    2. The terminal application
      4m 23s
    3. Logging in and using the command prompt
      5m 19s
    4. Command structure
      5m 22s
    5. Kernel and shells
      5m 25s
    6. Unix manual pages
      4m 6s
  3. 15m 58s
    1. The working directory
      2m 49s
    2. Listing files and directories
      3m 59s
    3. Moving around the filesystem
      4m 58s
    4. Filesystem organization
      4m 12s
  4. 1h 4m
    1. Naming files
      5m 41s
    2. Creating files
      2m 19s
    3. Unix text editors
      6m 39s
    4. Reading files
      5m 35s
    5. Reading portions of files
      3m 27s
    6. Creating directories
      2m 40s
    7. Moving and renaming files and directories
      8m 32s
    8. Copying files and directories
      3m 7s
    9. Deleting files and directories
      3m 38s
    10. Finder aliases in Unix
      4m 10s
    11. Hard links
      5m 30s
    12. Symbolic links
      6m 36s
    13. Searching for files and directories
      6m 32s
  5. 34m 58s
    1. Who am I?
      4m 3s
    2. Unix groups
      1m 52s
    3. File and directory ownership
      6m 41s
    4. File and directory permissions
      4m 27s
    5. Setting permissions using alpha notation
      6m 49s
    6. Setting permissions using octal notation
      3m 49s
    7. The root user
      1m 57s
    8. sudo and sudoers
      5m 20s
  6. 52m 34s
    1. Command basics
      4m 4s
    2. The PATH variable
      4m 13s
    3. System information commands
      3m 40s
    4. Disk information commands
      6m 8s
    5. Viewing processes
      5m 0s
    6. Monitoring processes
      3m 36s
    7. Stopping processes
      3m 19s
    8. Text file helpers
      6m 50s
    9. Utility programs
      7m 28s
    10. Using the command history
      8m 16s
  7. 20m 39s
    1. Standard input and standard output
      1m 24s
    2. Directing output to a file
      4m 13s
    3. Appending to a file
      2m 44s
    4. Directing input from a file
      5m 28s
    5. Piping output to input
      4m 40s
    6. Suppressing output
      2m 10s
  8. 41m 28s
    1. Profile, login, and resource files
      9m 11s
    2. Setting command aliases
      6m 59s
    3. Setting and exporting environment variables
      4m 54s
    4. Setting the PATH variable
      6m 10s
    5. Configuring history with variables
      6m 17s
    6. Customizing the command prompt
      6m 5s
    7. Logout file
      1m 52s
  9. 1h 25m
    1. grep: Searching for matching expressions
      5m 21s
    2. grep: Multiple files, other input
      4m 28s
    3. grep: Coloring matched text
      2m 57s
    4. Introduction to regular expressions
      3m 22s
    5. Regular expressions: Basic syntax
      3m 19s
    6. Using regular expressions with grep
      5m 20s
    7. tr: Translating characters
      8m 17s
    8. tr: Deleting and squeezing characters
      5m 30s
    9. sed: Stream editor
      7m 45s
    10. sed: Regular expressions and back-references
      7m 8s
    11. cut: Cutting select text portions
      7m 42s
    12. diff: Comparing files
      4m 35s
    13. diff: Alternative formats
      4m 30s
    14. xargs: Passing argument lists to commands
      7m 25s
    15. xargs: Usage examples
      7m 59s
  10. 42m 25s
    1. Finder integration
      4m 45s
    2. Clipboard integration
      5m 5s
    3. Screen capture
      3m 42s
    4. Shut down, reboot, and sleep
      3m 34s
    5. Text to speech
      2m 36s
    6. Spotlight integration: Searching metadata
      3m 41s
    7. Spotlight integration: Metadata attributes
      4m 24s
    8. Using AppleScript
      5m 23s
    9. System configurations: Viewing and setting
      5m 51s
    10. System configurations: Examples
      3m 24s
  11. 1m 26s
    1. Conclusion
      1m 26s

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Watch the Online Video Course Unix for Mac OS X Users
6h 35m Beginner Apr 29, 2011

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

Unix for Mac OS X Users unlocks the powerful capabilities of Unix that underlie Mac OS X, teaching how to use command-line syntax to perform common tasks such as file management, data entry, and text manipulation. The course teaches Unix from the ground up, starting with the basics of the command line and graduating to powerful, advanced tools like grep, sed, and xargs. The course shows how to enter commands in Terminal to create, move, copy, and delete files and folders; change file ownership and permissions; view and stop command and application processes; find and edit data within files; and use command-line shortcuts to speed up workflow. Exercise files accompany the course.

Topics include:
  • Moving around the file system
  • Creating and reading files
  • Copying, moving, renaming, and deleting files and directories
  • Creating hard links and symbolic links
  • Understanding user identity, file ownership, and sudo
  • Setting file permissions with alpha and octal notation
  • Changing the PATH variable
  • Using the command history
  • Directing input and output
  • Configuring the Unix working environment
  • Searching and replacing using grep and regular expressions
  • Manipulating text with tr, sed, and cut
  • Integrating with the Finder, Spotlight, and AppleScript
Subject:
IT
Software:
Mac OS X Unix
Author:
Kevin Skoglund

System configurations: Examples

In this movie, I want to show you a few of the most popular system configuration changes. The first one will show all the dot files in the Finder. Remember that by default the Finder hides all our dot files so that we can't see them, but we could change that behavior. If we want to make them visible we'd say defaults write com.apple. Finder and then ShowAllFiles true. If you ever decide you want to turn it off again, ShowAllFiles false. Or if you want the Unix path to display in the Finder windows up at the top, well its default is write com.apple. Finder, and then _FXShowPosixPathInTitle using all the correct capitalization, and then -bool TRUE, setting a Boolean to true.

If you wanted to go away then you'd just set it to bool False. We can also configure some of the defaults for screen capturing. We saw a little bit about how to trigger screen capturing from Unix. We can change how the Mac does its screen capturing permanently even in the Finder by setting defaults write com. apple.screen capture. Type is we can set a different file type. I have listed off most of them there for you. You could pick one of these and if you say, oh you know what I wish it would capture it and save it as a PDF file every time, well you can have it do that. You also change the location where it places that screen capture.

By default it's going to put it on your user's desktop, but if you use defaults write com.apple.screen capture location, then you can provide the path to where your documents save instead, so maybe you say I want to save it in /users/Kevin/pictures or /pictures/ screen captures. It can be whatever you want. The one caveat with that is that you do want to use a full file path. You don't use any kind of shortcuts like the till date, represent your user directory. Give it the full entire working path so that it can reliably find it.

And last of all you can change the background image for when you log into your Mac by using the defaults as well. You know the picture that I'm talking about? It's not the desktop picture that you get after you've logged in. This is the image that's behind that log-in screen. Currently there's not a way to change that image inside System Preferences. Maybe they'll make that possible in the future, but right now that's a hidden option. You can't change that picture. Well let's say you want to put your company logo in the background or something or pictures of your kids there, right behind the login screen, as soon as your computer comes up. You can. All you have to do is use defaults to change com.apple.loginwindow DesktopPicture to the path to the new picture that you want to change it to.

Notice that I've also used sudo in front of this one. That's because these defaults live in that system configuration, every user will get this preference, and so we need sudo to make that change system wide. Once again you want to provide a full path. Don't have any shortcuts to it. Now a lot of people have resorted to a low-tech version of making the same change and that is they go into their library of desktop pictures and they move Aqua Blue.jpg out-of-the-way and they put whatever image they want in its place within name Aqua Blue.jpg. That's bad for a number of reasons.

First of all now Aqua Blue is no longer there if you need it for something else and your other image is mislabeled. It's better to do at this way with the preferences. And so you can just change it to this, and if you want to change it back to Aqua Blue later, you just change the preference again. So you can see the increase level of power and control that Unix gives you over your Mac. Not only can you do really powerful cool things in Unix but you actually can get under the hood of your Mac and make changes to the way that it works as well.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Unix for Mac OS X Users .


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Q: The exercise files for the following movies appear to be broken:
07_02_files
07_03_files
07_04_files
07_05_files
08_03_files

Is there something wrong with them?
These exercises include one or more "dot files", whose file names start with a period. These files are normally hidden from view by the Finder.  So that they would show up in the Finder, the period has been removed from the file names. Additionally, "_example" has been added at the end of the file name to make it clear that the file will not work as-is. To make the dot files usable, either:

1) Open the file in a text editor to view its contents. Note that it may not be possible to double-click the file to open it because there is no file extension (such as .txt).
2) Resave the file under a new name (usually by choosing File > Save As), adding a "." to the beginning of the file name and removing "_example" from the end.

OR

1) Copy and rename the file from the Unix command line using the techniques discussed in this course. Rename the file by adding a "." to the start and removing "_example" from the end. Include the "-i" option to prevent overwriting an existing file unexpectedly.
Example:  cp -i ~/Desktop/Exercise\ Files/Chapter_07/07_02_files/bashrc_example ~/.bashrc
 
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