Easy Wednesday "Switch" Questions

iStudent

macrumors newbie
Original poster
My new 24" iMac arrived on Monday and I have barely left its side! It's absolutely the best purchase of my life thus far, so I applaud Apple for putting out such an amazing product and the MR community for helping me out in the buying process. :cool:

Now that I have it, I do have some OS X related questions, since I have been a Windows user for the majority of my days on computers.

a) Is there a way to "lock my workstation" on OS X?

b) On my 24" iMac, perhaps after doing what I would like to in Question A, can I just turn the monitor off and leave everything else on? I would not have a problem with sleep, except my ethernet connection goes down and I need it active nearly all day.

c) How do I setup Gmail through Mail.app correctly? I would like for mail to stay on the Google server, but I want the Google server to reflect exactly what is happening in Mail.app (meaning, deleted messages should be removed from GMail, read messages should be read, etc.)

d) Can I do the same thing in Question C for iCal and Google Calendar (make them mirrors of each other but I control through iCal)?

Much appreciated, crowd. :D
 

Chundles

macrumors G4
Jul 4, 2005
11,979
428
iStudent said:
My new 24" iMac arrived on Monday and I have barely left its side! It's absolutely the best purchase of my life thus far, so I applaud Apple for putting out such an amazing product and the MR community for helping me out in the buying process. :cool:

Now that I have it, I do have some OS X related questions, since I have been a Windows user for the majority of my days on computers.

a) Is there a way to "lock my workstation" on OS X?
How do you mean? You can set the screensaver to require a password in the Security pane of System Preferences.

b) On my 24" iMac, perhaps after doing what I would like to in Question A, can I just turn the monitor off and leave everything else on? I would not have a problem with sleep, except my ethernet connection goes down and I need it active nearly all day.
You can just adjust the brightness down to zero - the screen turns off but the computer keeps running, you could also set it to put the display (not the whole system) to sleep after a set period of time - this is in the Energy Saver pane of Sys. Prefs.

c) How do I setup Gmail through Mail.app correctly? I would like for mail to stay on the Google server, but I want the Google server to reflect exactly what is happening in Mail.app (meaning, deleted messages should be removed from GMail, read messages should be read, etc.)
I don't think it's possible for you to do that. GMail is designed to be used by a myriad of different mail programs, if you want that level of synchronisation I think you'd need to look at .Mac

d) Can I do the same thing in Question C for iCal and Google Calendar (make them mirrors of each other but I control through iCal)?
Once again, iCal is very specialised, for online/offline calendar syncing check out .Mac

Much appreciated, crowd. :D
No problems, these answers brought to you from the future. Currently it's 6:13am on Thursday morning.
 

iStudent

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Chundles said:
How do you mean? You can set the screensaver to require a password in the Security pane of System Preferences.
In Windows XP (pretty sure in 2000 as well, although I haven't touched a W2K machine in over six months), you can just hit Windows key+L to lock your workstation (or, alternatively, hit Ctrl+Alt+Del and select Lock Workstation). Basically that Win+L just brings up a logon box without logging me out, so I can protect my work while I'm away from my desk.

Chundles said:
You can just adjust the brightness down to zero - the screen turns off but the computer keeps running, you could also set it to put the display (not the whole system) to sleep after a set period of time - this is in the Energy Saver pane of Sys. Prefs.
I have seen the option to just turn down the display when I don't need it on (particularly after locking my workstation). I suppose I was asking more if there was a keystroke to just set the display sleep time to immediately off, rather than having me move the slider everytime I want to leave the room.

Chundles said:
I don't think it's possible for you to do that. GMail is designed to be used by a myriad of different mail programs, if you want that level of synchronisation I think you'd need to look at .Mac

Once again, iCal is very specialised, for online/offline calendar syncing check out .Mac
I see. I will have to look into .Mac then, if Gmail and Mail/iCal don't play well together in the manner I want them to. Are there any .Mac users out there that can attest to the setup I want and have it work very well? Can I check my mail or calendar from a remote source without Mail/iCal installed on said remote machine?

Chundles said:
No problems, these answers brought to you from the future. Currently it's 6:13am on Thursday morning.
Ahh... the glorious works of international time zones. [insert 'oohs' and 'aahs']
 

mdntcallr

macrumors 65816
Aug 1, 2000
1,467
135
i concur. enjoy your new computer. i really hope it does well for you.

also... i am sure there is a lil program to password lock.

i am debating the mac pro or imac 24" i like the idea of internal hard drives for upgrading and also the timetravel backup function in new OS
 

iStudent

macrumors newbie
Original poster
balamw said:
Both the password lock and turn off screen are probably even things that can be handled by a small AppleScript.
I could do this through Automator, correct? (Just making sure I have my OS X terminology and mindset in... still working into the whole environment thing. :p )
EDIT: Thanks, B. Caught your link in mid-post. I will try that out when I return to my home desktop.

Also, I have thought of two more questions I can add to my thread here...

e) In Front Row, is there a way to automatically shuffle songs without having to select the shuffle songs option? I'm particularly talking about if I navigate all the way down to one specific album by one artist. There, no shuffle songs option is available and it would be excellent if there was.

f) I have four separate network drives I would like to have mount all of the time (think of comparing it to mapping network drives in Windows). I can successfully mount to all four locations, but after a period of inactivity, some will be unmounted when I return, often randomly. I have all the passwords saved in Keychain, so I am not sure why they are disappearing.
 

annk

Administrator
Staff member
Apr 18, 2004
14,099
5,785
Somewhere over the rainbow
iStudent said:
...Can I check my mail or calendar from a remote source without Mail/iCal installed on said remote machine?
With iCal and a .mac account, you can publish your calenders, individually or collectively. Then all you need is the link, and you can check your calender from any machine with Internet access.
 

reflex

macrumors 6502a
May 19, 2002
721
0
iStudent said:
Basically that Win+L just brings up a logon box without logging me out, so I can protect my work while I'm away from my desk.
OSX does appear to have a "Login window..." option that does the same thing.

If you have an "users" icon on the menu bar, it's in that menu. Otherwise I don't know where to find it.
 

Razorhog

macrumors 65816
Sep 16, 2006
1,144
116
Arkansas
Launch Keychain Access, open the Preferences dialog, and then check the box to "Show Status in Menu Bar." This puts the keychain menu extra in your menu bar; one of its options is Lock Screen.
 

jMc

macrumors 6502
Nov 19, 2001
324
7
London N8, Late-16th Century
You need to set 'Fast User Switching' in the Accounts pane on System Preferences. You'll find it by clicking on 'Login Options' at the bottom of the User list area. This will give you a new menu item with an option to go to Login Window.

Alternatively, as has already been suggested, you can set your screensaver to require a password and set a hot corner to activate your screensaver.

There's not a keyboard shortcut unfortunately.

jx
 

mduser63

macrumors 68040
Nov 9, 2004
3,039
30
Salt Lake City, UT
Razorhog said:
Launch Keychain Access, open the Preferences dialog, and then check the box to "Show Status in Menu Bar." This puts the keychain menu extra in your menu bar; one of its options is Lock Screen.
This is the right answer. I use it often.

 

quantum0726

macrumors newbie
May 6, 2004
4
0
iStudent said:
c) How do I setup Gmail through Mail.app correctly? I would like for mail to stay on the Google server, but I want the Google server to reflect exactly what is happening in Mail.app (meaning, deleted messages should be removed from GMail, read messages should be read, etc.)
Gmail provides POP access only (other than the web app), so it's fairly one-sided. You can download e-mail at a set interval (so that any new mail shows up as if you were using the web app), but you're only making a copy of that message, not syncing it like IMAP access would give you. Gmail may provide IMAP in the future (most likely for a price IMO), but as of now, no matter which mail program you use, you can't fully sync Gmail.

iStudent said:
d) Can I do the same thing in Question C for iCal and Google Calendar (make them mirrors of each other but I control through iCal)?
Google calendar is still quite beta, so support for this might show up later, but I've tried this a few ways and haven't had much luck. You can export your iCal calendar to Gmail and you can set up iCal to suscribe to your Google calendar (and it should update when you make changes online), but their system is one-way, just like Gmail. You can read changes, but can't make any. So if you just want to make changes on the iCal side and never modify Google's calendar directly, then you can export your iCal calendar and import it into Google. You'll have to do this anytime you make a change though. But if you want to fully sync the calendars, then the only way I could think of to would be to build an Applescript that would export your iCal calendar anytime you make change, but I'm not familiar enough with iCal scripting to do this.
 
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