Mac OS X passwords

The three to concern yourself about:

Admin

The primary user’s password. Gives access to the entire system, except the private areas of any secondary users.

Master

Makes it possible for hapless secondary users to reset their own passwords. Note: Don’t forget this one because it can’t be re-created!

User

Secondary users need their own password to log on, giving them restricted access to their part of the system.

Incoming Caller-ID Information Monitor

Jon’s Phone Tool (JPT) is the app I’m now testing and using to display caller-id. It has scripts to dial the phone from within FMP, but I’ve yet to figure a way to extract, from incoming calls, the data displayed.

JPT is a lot too fancy for my taste. If I had the raw code, I’d make the caller-id data append directly into a simple tab-delimited text file. Because JPT also has extensive AppleScript support, that may yet be possible. However, the 14 day free trial period is enough to convince me to look elsewhere.

Hello, you’ve reached MotorolaSM56K

Just signed up with AT&T for caller-id. Plugged the phone line into the modem on back of the computer and installed Silica.

The first few times I called from another line, to test the connection, Silica operated as specified: Little window pops up on desktop showing name and number of caller. Then it got inconsistent, followed by non existent. What was the problem? There are rumors about Mac internal modems being not of the highest quality because hardly any one uses them anymore, but I did see it working, at first.

Going to Terminal, I used the screen command to view the modem session:

screen /dev/tty.modem

It replied “Resource busy. Sorry, could not find a PTY.”

Oops! I went back to Silica’s Settings, stopped the service, then re-entered the screen command in Terminal, and got the expected blank screen.

Calling from my other phone, I saw the modem detect the call:

RING

RING

So, it’s not a hardware problem. To be continued (I’ll figure it out)…

BTW: To quit (kill) the screen window manager, use Cntrl-a k.

Off Like A Jet!!!

After doing Software Update to take it from 10.4 to 10.4.9, the Mac went into the spinning-daisy-icon mode for a long time. I just walked away from it for an hour. The screen was blank when I got back to it, presumably in sleep mode. Clicking the space bar sounded familiar, like it was coming to life, but the screen remained black and the fan started running faster and faster and louder and louder until it was a scream! I held down the power button to shut it down.

Back on again, the first thing I did was look in the log:

Applications > Utilities > Console

It said mdimportserver crashed(?). Maybe it’s something to do with Spotlight Indexing.

Sighting the Tiger

Upgrading to 10.4 went smoothly, the whole process taking about 20 minutes. It started by checking the installation disk, then verifying the destination volume before copying lots of files from the Mac OS X Install DVD. After Optimizing System Performance, it restarted automatically from the new system’s boot partition.

The first thing I noticed was that new files (screen shots I took during the registration process) weren’t going automatically into the lower right corner of the desktop. Also, there was a new icon inserted into the dock, Dashboard.

I had to check email first. My DSL connection worked fine. Mail was just as I left it.

Next I had to see if it would recognize a blank DVD, and it did! That was one of my problems in Panther. Another problem was Help in Terminal, and that was okay. I’m going to bed now, it’s 1:51 AM.

My rsync Backup Script

This code will look for the differences between folders, replace the old files with the new files after moving the old ones into a separate folder, and display the activity. It’s stored in /Users/GG/bin/ and simply named backup:

#!/bin/sh
if [ $# -ne 2 ]; then
echo 1>&2 Error, Usage: $0 sourcePath destDir
exit 127
fi
theDate=`date '+%y%m%d%H%M%S'`
destPath="/Volumes/Motherlode/Backup"
theIncr="$destPath/$2-$theDate"
scriptOut="$destPath/progress.txt"
echo "------------------------------------------------------------" > "$scriptOut"

echo; echo; echo "$1$2 -> $theDate" >> "$scriptOut"
rsync -ablPvz --backup-dir="$theIncr" --delete --progress "$1$2/" "$destPath/$2" >> "$scriptOut"

echo "------------------------------------------------------------" >> "$scriptOut"

cat "$scriptOut"
exit 0

Run these lines in a BBEdit worksheet.

backup “/Users/GG/” “bin”
backup “/Users/GG/Documents/” “Save”
backup “/Users/GG/Documents/” “Databases”
backup “/Users/GG/Library/” “Application Support”
backup “/Users/GG/Library/” “Mail”
backup “/Volumes/Cornucopia/Library/” “WebServer”

Command-z to get rid of the progress reports.

I remember (wrote this script years ago) that there was something critical about one slash character in the rsync parameter list to get the behavior exactly right. Also, although the results for this user are fine, the script’s execution gives “Permission denied” error messages for directories belonging to others.

Export Addresses and Bookmarks

I’m starting to backup before updating system.

For saving Safari Bookmarks, there is a switch that can be turned on to display a Debug menu:

% defaults write com.apple.Safari IncludeDebugMenu 1

The Save folder in my Documents is part of my backup routine so that is where I export a copy of the bookmarks:

Safari > Debug > Export Bookmarks… -> Documents/Save/

Address Book makes it easier with a command in its File menu:

Address Book > File > Backup Database -> Documents/Save/

Tiger creeps up on Panther

I’ve notice that Terminal in my Panther system has a different prompt and is not giving me the help and man pages it used to. Something needs to be reset and I don’t feel like looking for it. Maybe I’ll just switch to Tiger and forget about getting Panther back to where it was. Friends have been suggesting that since Tiger first came out, but I hesitated to install it then because, until now, nothing was broke.

Spotlight and Dashboard look interesting, too, by the way.

Piecing it Together Again

Rebuilding the system, from the disks that came with the G5, without also reinstalling the bundled software, proved a mistake. I had just finished doing all the online updates going from 10.3.5 to 10.3.9 (required for Filemaker 8.5), when I noticed blank cds weren’t being recognized. I had to go back again to those system disks to reinstall iDVD, but mistakenly reinstalled 10.3.5 again. Let me warn you, this is TOO easy a mistake to make!

Then I had to do what Adobe calls a HotFix for Dreamweaver. Then reinstall Xcode, Stuffit, and Adobe Reader.

Alas, now my printer wouldn’t work. Turns out the reactivation secret is to access the hidden print driver installer by using “Go to Folder…” in the Finder (at least I learned one new thing during this debacle):

Finder > Go > Go to Folder > /Volumes/Mac OS X Install Disc 1/System/Installation/Packages/HewlettPackardPrinterDrivers.pkg

turn on printer
Printer Setup Utility