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15 Hacks To Make Anyone A Mac Expert

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15 Hacks To Make Anyone A Mac Expert

Macintosh computers offer users incredible fluidity and ease of use. One of the most beneficial ways to use this in your favor is by learning a few simple Mac hack shortcuts. By taking command of keyboard shortcuts you can truly master this intuitive and forward-thinking operating system.

1. Jump to Last Used Program: Cmd + Tab

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      By pressing Cmd + Tab, you can quickly switch to your last used program. This is particularly useful if you are copy and pasting between programs, since pressing Cmd + Tab twice switches you between the same two programs.

      2. View Program Switcher: Press and Hold Cmd, Then Tap Tab

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          Similarly, if you press and hold cmd, then tap tab, the program switch window will come up. From here, you can press tab to scroll right between your open programs or tap shift + tab to scroll left. To choose a program, highlight the program logo you need, then release the command key.

          3. View All Windows: Ctrl + Up Arrow

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            Another simple Mac hack is to see all your open windows. Merely hit ctrl + up arrow to see a spread of your current windows.

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            4. Show Desktop: F11

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              Similarly, to view the desktop quickly tap the F11 key. On some keyboards (particularly laptops) you may need to hold the function key for this Mac hack to work.

              5. Hide Window: Cmd + H

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                This trick is particularly useful at school or work when you might not be exactly on task. Quickly hit cmd + H to hide the window you’re currently in. This doesn’t minimize the window, it just hides it from view. However, like minimizing, hiding your window keeps your place in the application. To bring the window back, click on the application icon on the dock.

                6. Move to Trash: Cmd + Delete

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                  If you don’t like dragging items to the trash manually, there’s a simple way around it. Highlight the document or program you wish to delete, then hit cmd + delete.

                  7. Empty Trash without Warning: Cmd + Opt + Shift + Delete

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                    Similarly, an easy way to empty your trash without having to open it is to hit cmd + opt + shift + delete. Deleting your trash this way will also bypass the warning message asking you to confirm deleting your trash.

                    8. Undo Last Action in Finder: Cmd + Z

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                      If you’ve accidentally deleted something, or moved something into a folder you can’t find, simply press cmd + Z. Like most programs on an Apple computer, Finder recognizes cmd + Z to mean “undo last action.”

                      9. Take Screenshot: Cmd + Shift + 3

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                        Another quick Mac hack is to take a screenshot without needing an extra program. Simply press cmd + shift + 3 to capture your entire screen. This automatically saves the photo to the desktop.

                        10. Take Screenshot of Selected Area: Cmd + Shift + 4

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                          If you would rather take a screenshot of a selected area of your screen instead of the entire thing, hit cmd + shift + 4, then drag a rectangle with your mouse. Release the rectangle to capture the screenshot.

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                          11. Open Link in New Tab: Cmd + Click a Link

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                            Another quick Mac tip is to automatically open a new link in a new browser tab. To avoid losing the page your on, simply hold down cmd before you click a link.

                            12. Change Volume without Clicks: Hold Shift

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                              It’s also possible to change the volume without playing the clicks. Just hold shift while you adjust the volume.

                              13. Power on without Noise: F10 + Power Button

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                                You can power on your Mac without any noise as well—just hold F10 (mute) while your Mac powers up.

                                14. Use Emoji Keyboard: Cmd + Ctlr + Space

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                                  Most people don’t know that you can include mobile emoji characters from your Mac, even though it’s a desktop. Just hit cmd + ctrl + space while typing to open the keyboard selector.

                                  15. Use Special Characters: Hold Letter Key

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                                    If you need to include foreign characters while you’re typing, there’s an easier way than searching for the character, than copy and pasting it. Simply hold down the English letter equivalent to bring up a list of accents and variations right in the program.

                                    For a complete list of Mac hack keyboard shortcuts, see Apple’s official list here.

                                    Featured photo credit: Pete Markham via flickr.com

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                                    Alicia Prince

                                    A writer, filmmaker, and artist who shares about lifestyle tips and inspirations on Lifehack.

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                                    Last Updated on November 25, 2021

                                    How to Make Private Browsing on Safari Truly Private

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                                    How to Make Private Browsing on Safari Truly Private

                                    There comes a time when we may be searching online and don’t want the browser to remember our footsteps. The reasons don’t always have to be what we obviously think of as the main reason; for example, sometimes, you may not want Safari to remember your passwords or prompt you to enter your password when surfing the web.

                                    Whatever the reason, we may think that we are totally in the clear with Private Browsing on Safari and the other browsers on a Mac. However, a quick Terminal command can bring up every website you’ve visited. How do you do this? Also, how do you clear your tracks for good? We will provide both answers and more today.

                                      What Does Private Browsing Do?

                                      When activated, Private Browsing on Safari prevents your browsing history from being kept in the history tab of the application. Along with this, it doesn’t autofill information that you have saved in the browser. In this mode, you essentially become incognito and any references of previous use is essentially hidden when you are in private mode.

                                      For example: if you are on Facebook or filling out a form and some information or your login is already filled in in the spaces provided, this is called autofill. It’s activated by simply clicking Safari next to the Apple symbol in the menubar and selecting Private Browsing, then clicking “OK” to the prompt.

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                                      The reasons behind private mode differ for each individual. While we won’t go into all of those reasons, one thing that is  important to remember is that private browsing doesn’t forget the websites you visit. As we will see later on, Macs keep a second copy of the websites you visit in either mode. If you are in frantic mode looking for a solution to this, look no further.

                                      The Terminal Archive

                                      While Safari does a good job of keeping your search history out of prying eyes in the history tab, there is a less-than-obvious way to view a full list of visited websites on Mac. This is done in Terminal; the command-line emulator that allows you to make changes to your Mac.

                                      Terminal is located in the Utilities folder on your Mac. Once activated, simply add the command:

                                      dscacheutil -cachedump -entries Host

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                                      Once you hit “enter”, a list of the visited sites appear. Showing only the domains, the sites appear in a format of:

                                      Key: h_name :(website domain)ipv4 :1

                                      However, there’s no need to fear—there is a way you can clear this information from Terminal with a command that’s just as simple.

                                      Clearing Your Tracks

                                      Just as simply as you were able to enter the command to view the websites, you can clear the cache that Terminal showed you with the comamnd:

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                                      dscacheutil -flushcache

                                      As the command denotes, this literally “flushes” the domains from Terminal. This does not prevent the record from continuing to be recorded for future sites, however, so if that’s an issue for you, repeat this process regularly.

                                      Other Browsers and Private Browsing

                                      Other browsers have this form of privacy mode for their service. They promise many of the same things as Safari, but they do not have the same Terminal issue due to how this command only presents websites visited on Safari (the browser Macs come shipped with).

                                      If you use Firefox, you’ll notice that its private mode is also known as Private Browsing. Chrome calls private mode Incognito, while Internet Explorer refers to it as InPrivate Browsing. Opera is the newest to the scene, denoting it as Private Tab. Safari is the oldest well-known browser with this feature.

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                                      As you can see, despite Private Browsing not being 100% private, Terminal allows for your browser to be. In what ways has Terminal helped your life or allowed you to become more productive? Let us know in the comments below.

                                      Featured photo credit: Benjamin Dada via unsplash.com

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