How do you use Automator?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by warning9, Apr 25, 2009.

  1. warning9 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2009
    #1
    I've been playing around with Automator today and I'm just curious how other people use it.

    The only thing I've done with it so far is to get it to connect to a NAS server at startup for Time Machine to backup to.
     
  2. ergdegdeg Moderator emeritus

    ergdegdeg

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2007
    #2
    I have a little Automator action on my Desktop that ejects all my external HDs. And I also use Automator to filter/delete unneeded iCal-Events (I get my course data at uni as an ics-file and only want my group's dates).
     
  3. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #3
    Yeah, I used to have automator actions that did things like send files to my phone or PDA via Bluetooth (this is back when I had a PDA briefly and when I had a phone that could receive files via bluetooth! :p ). I mostly used them to make contextual menus. To be honest I haven't used it much since maybe the 1-1.5 years after Tiger came out. Not that I don't think it's a neat idea. Maybe Snow Leopard will bring more interesting actions.
     
  4. Shake 'n' Bake macrumors 68020

    Shake 'n' Bake

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2009
    Location:
    Albany
    #4
  5. angelwatt Moderator emeritus

    angelwatt

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    USA
    #5
    The only interesting thing I've done with Automator is to setup a process that cropped a folder of images. I'm more likely to write a AppleScript piece to do something. I've written a number for applications like BBEdit that I run from the app and can be very handy.
     
  6. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2006
    Location:
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    #6
    I use it to batch convert images and used to use it to batch rename files before I found Name Mangler.
     
  7. Pyrotechnic macrumors 6502

    Pyrotechnic

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2009
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    #7
    Interesting post. I could do with some tutorials on Automator as its a completely new thing to me, as a switcher from M$. If anyone could point me in the right direction, it would be appreciated.
     
  8. Shake 'n' Bake macrumors 68020

    Shake 'n' Bake

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2009
    Location:
    Albany
    #8
    Come up with a need for an app, find out that you can't get it or can't get it for free, and start fooling around!
     
  9. angelwatt Moderator emeritus

    angelwatt

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    USA
    #9
  10. Pyrotechnic macrumors 6502

    Pyrotechnic

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2009
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    #10
    Thanks for those. Having just looked at it, I am trying to set up something which will delete my iCal events that are more than 30 days old. Is this possible ?
     
  11. Shake 'n' Bake macrumors 68020

    Shake 'n' Bake

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2009
    Location:
    Albany
    #11
    It is. Just play around with the stuff in the Calender bit.

    Remember this: If it can't be done in Automator, you can probably do it in ScriptEditor.
     
  12. brennenmark macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2009
    #12
    iCal can do this automatically :cool:

    iCal > Preferences > Advanced

    Tick the "Delete events" box.
     
  13. warning9 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2009
  14. reclusivemonkey macrumors 6502

    reclusivemonkey

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2008
    Location:
    Sowerby Bridge, West Yorkshire, UK
    #14
    My main iTunes library is on my Mac Mini, but I buy most of my music from my laptop so I created an Automator workflow to copy music I've purchased over to the Mac Mini.
     
  15. Pyrotechnic macrumors 6502

    Pyrotechnic

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2009
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    #15
    So you can, eh you learn everyday. Who needs automator ;)
     
  16. MTI macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2009
    Location:
    Scottsdale, AZ
    #16
    Can Automator create a "batch file" that will run at boot?
     
  17. harry20larry macrumors 6502a

    harry20larry

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2008
    #17
    Last week I was doing work experience in a marketing team, at the end of a presentation they give out a USB Stick with the presentation on it. Basically, a girl who already worked there and I had to copy 2 presentations onto around 150 pen drives.
    She was on Windows and got a head start by copy and pasting etc.
    I took my time and set up an automator script that would:
    1. grab the two files needed
    2. Format the pen drive
    3. Copy the files across
    4. Run them and then close them (to see if they work)
    5. Eject the pen drive

    Over all I did about 110 and she did 40 cause all I had to do was to just hit play whenever I inserted a stick
     
  18. AdeFowler macrumors 68020

    AdeFowler

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2004
    Location:
    England
    #18
    I've got a couple set up as Finder plug-ins… Batch convert images and Batch rename images.
     
  19. angelwatt Moderator emeritus

    angelwatt

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    USA
    #19
    You can save the Automator workflow as an app then add that app to your login item list in System Preferences. So yes, as long as you mean at login rather than during the boot up process.
     
  20. MTI macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2009
    Location:
    Scottsdale, AZ
    #20
    Thanks for the tip.

    I have an iMac whose built in LCD has started the "lines of death" spiral, so I know that eventually it will be totally useless. I have an external monitor, running in mirror mode, that keeps it from being tossed in the trash.

    Having an Automator script to ensure that mirror mode is always put in place on startup would provide some security. I'm hoping that the upgrade to Snow Leopard, which means running without scripts and requiring that the internal screen be functional, won't mean the end of system software upgrades for the iMac.
     

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