Questions about osx from a new user

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by southpaw17, Mar 28, 2007.

  1. southpaw17 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2007
    #1
    1. Where can I find out how to use osx to its fullest potential?

    2. What do I do about all of the .dmg that are just sitting on my desktop? I've downloaded some things and now I don't know if i should delete the .dmg files?

    3. Why does a folder open up and I have to click another icon whenever I want to use Firefox?

    4. Why, whenever I want to use an app I downloaded, does a new icon appear that looks like a disk drive.

    5. Is there anything on a Mac that is like add/remove programs in windows? or how do I uninstall programs?

    6. If is add and delete a lot of files, is it like windows where I have to run disk cleanup and disk defragmenter?

    7. Does iTunes for mac copy all of my music files into another folder, meaning that I would now have two of the files on my computer? How can I stop this from happening?

    8. Is there anything similar to the start bar on my mac, or everytime I want to use an app do I have to access it through my mac hd?

    As the title says, I am completely new to mac. I would be willing to read if there was a manual, but I never received anything with my computer. Any help anyone can give regarding these questions would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. TBi macrumors 68030

    TBi

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2005
    Location:
    Ireland
    #2
    1. Where can I find out how to use osx to its fullest potential?

    -Dunno

    2. What do I do about all of the .dmg that are just sitting on my desktop? I've downloaded some things and now I don't know if i should delete the .dmg files?

    -These are disk images, open it and drag the program inside to your applications folder. You can then delete the DMG.

    3. Why does a folder open up and I have to click another icon whenever I want to use Firefox?

    -See above

    4. Why, whenever I want to use an app I downloaded, does a new icon appear that looks like a disk drive.

    -See above

    5. Is there anything on a Mac that is like add/remove programs in windows? or how do I uninstall programs?

    -Drag the application into the bin to remove/uninstall it

    6. If is add and delete a lot of files, is it like windows where I have to run disk cleanup and disk defragmenter?

    -Dunno, you don't really need to but you can

    7. Does iTunes for mac copy all of my music files into another folder, meaning that I would now have two of the files on my computer? How can I stop this from happening?

    -Look through the options and RTFM

    8. Is there anything similar to the start bar on my mac, or everytime I want to use an app do I have to access it through my mac hd?

    -The dock is your start menu, just drag an application you want to use onto your dock (left hand side of the vertical line) and it will stay there forever so you can easily click it to start. Also if you want drag the applications folder to the right of the vertical line and then you can right click it to get a list of all the applications on your mac.

    As the title says, I am completely new to mac. I would be willing to read if there was a manual, but I never received anything with my computer. Any help anyone can give regarding these questions would be greatly appreciated.

    -Read the built in help
     
  3. mduser63 macrumors 68040

    mduser63

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2004
    Location:
    Salt Lake City, UT
    #3
    These are all pretty common switcher questions.

    1. Try OS X: The Missing Manual and/or Switching to the Mac: The Missing Manual. Both are good books.

    2. .dmg files are disk images, and assuming you've copied the contents (see answers to 4 & 5) to your Applications folder, you can delete them.

    3. Have no idea what you're talking about, sorry.

    4. The icon that looks like a disk drive is a mounted disk image (.dmg) file. Copy the application that's in it to your Applications folder by dragging it from the disk image to Applications. You can then eject the disk image by dragging its icon to the trash (which will change to an eject icon).

    5. The vast majority of Mac apps can be uninstalled by simply dragging them to the trash. They will generally leave a small preferences file around, but it will do no harm, and may be nice to have around in that if you later reinstall the app, it'll remember your previous preferences. Try something like AppZapper if that really bothers you.

    6. No, OS X defragments files "on-the-fly". There are defragmenter programs available for OS X, but I don't know of anyone who uses them.

    7. Go into iTunes preferences, click on Advanced, then the General tab, then uncheck "Copy files to iTunes Music folder when adding to library." FWIW, I prefer to have iTunes copy files to my iTunes Music folder, but if you don't, that's what the preference is for.

    8. Drag apps that you use frequently into the Dock. That's what it's for. You can also check out Quicksilver if you're looking for something a little more powerful.

    Hope this helps.

    EDIT: Beaten to it to TBi.
     
  4. TBi macrumors 68030

    TBi

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2005
    Location:
    Ireland
    #5
    I'd say both posts are valid, you covered some things i didn't :)
     
  5. killmoms macrumors 68040

    killmoms

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2003
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    #6
    1) Just keep using it, I guess there are some starter books but I've never been keen on those, so I don't really have anything to recommend.

    2) When you download an app, it comes in a DMG file (disk image). Think of it like a ZIP file or installer on Windows. The idea is to copy the application from that disk image to your hard drive's Applications folder, then eject the disk image, and delete the DMG file. Then you just use the application from the Apps folder.

    3) Same problem, you just aren't understanding disk images. Just copy Firefox to your local hard drive's Applications folder.

    4) Same problem again, you aren't installing anything, you're just running them from the disk images. Copy the apps to your Applications folder first, and then delete the disk images.

    5) No. Just delete them from the Applications folder. There is no step two.

    6) No, OS X automatically defragments in the background. You can run some system utilities like Onyx, but it's not really necessary.

    7) Yes, it does. Just add things to the library and then get rid of the originals. Let iTunes manage it for you.

    8) Drag your Applications folder to the dock, in the area next to the Trash can. You can right-click that to get a menu listing your apps. Or, add apps you frequently use to the Dock by dragging them to the left portion (where open apps appear).

    EDIT: Dammit, I hate trying to post while I'm at work. Get distracted, have to do things, come back to finish and three other people have already replied. :p
     
  6. TBi macrumors 68030

    TBi

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2005
    Location:
    Ireland
  7. emptyCup macrumors 65816

    emptyCup

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2005
    #8
    A good start is one of David Pogue's Missing Manual books. Either "Mac OSX: Tiger" or "Switching to the Mac" if you are comfortable with Windows. Both available from Amazon.

    Drag everything you do not use everyday out of the Dock. Then drag your Applications and Documents folders into the Dock. Click and hold the mouse button down on a folder to get a pop-up menu like the Start Bar. Don't forget Recent Items under the Apple Menu. Best wishes.
     
  8. TBi macrumors 68030

    TBi

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2005
    Location:
    Ireland
    #9
    Also when launching applications, just hit apple+space to bring up the spotlight entry box (top right) and type in the name of the application. If the application is the first entry hit apple+enter to open it, else just down arrow to it and click enter to open it too.
     

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