Must-have apps and tweaks for MacBook Air newbies?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by dennya, Sep 10, 2011.

  1. dennya macrumors regular

    dennya

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2009
    Location:
    Seattle-ish
    #1
    Okay, lots of folks will apparently be getting MacBook Airs on Monday and Tuesday, and for a percentage of them it's their first Air, or even their first Mac.

    Curious as to what applications and utilities veteran Air owners find to be a must, really useful, or just fun.

    I have the big stuff lined up already: Office 2011, Parallels 7, Photoshop, and Lightroom. But I'd love to hear recommendations of favorite apps and utilities from other Air owners, and I'm sure there will be lots of other new Air owners who'd appreciate it too.

    (System tweaks appreciated too!)
     
  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
  3. ZBoater macrumors G3

    ZBoater

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2007
    Location:
    Sunny Florida
    #3
    Chrome
    Dropbox
    Evernote
    VLC Player
    calibre (eBook reader)
    iStat
     
  4. Kroner macrumors regular

    Kroner

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2011
    Location:
    Norway
    #5
    o_O anything happening this monday and tuesday?

    Also I completely agree with ZBoater.
    Although the only app I haven´t downloaded yet is chrome.
     
  5. yegon macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2007
  6. fireworksdesign macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2011
    #7
    i use adium to replace msn yahoo messenger gtalk aim etc.

    deeper - to unlock hidden customizations, i use it to show / hide hidden files.

    i like showing the item info, especially usefull in the desktop, you can see how many files / how much gb used in your drive. go to finder > view > show view options > show item info



     
  7. hkim1983 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2009
    #8
    I would say Chrome and VLC are probably the most general "must have" apps you can get for your mac, that it didn't already come with.

    Aside from those, I probably use Transmission, Office, and Adium the most.
     
  8. TheBaconKing macrumors regular

    TheBaconKing

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2010
    Location:
    Northwest Arkansas
    #9
    I don't understand why Chrome is a "must have" app. I think Safari for Mac is the best we have. If I were on windows I would use chrome hands down, but on a Mac? Doubtful.

    I personally use Dropbox and Sparrow daily, and am really getting into GeekTool.

    CleanMyMac is great for any Mac, not just the Air.

    I recently got GamePad Companion so it is easy to set up switch to different button configurations on my PS3 controller for some light gaming. (currently GTA: Vice City)

    Other than that I have your standard apps like VLC, Grip, The Unarchiver, etc.

    Always on the lookout for the new neat tweaks and apps!
     
  9. aeboi macrumors 65816

    aeboi

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2009
    Location:
    Bay Area
    #10
    Love Chrome, fast, integrated address/google bar, separate pr0n mode window
     
  10. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #11
    One app that I would not recommend, based on the number of complaints that have been posted in this forum and elsewhere, is CleanMyMac. As an example: CleanMyMac cleaned too much.

    You don't need "cleaner" apps to keep your Mac running efficiently.
     
  11. rhinosrcool macrumors 65816

    rhinosrcool

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2009
    Location:
    MN
    #12
    I second this.
     
  12. TornadoLowLevel macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2011
    Location:
    UK
    #13
    Chrome Canary
    Better Touch Tool
    Sophos
    TriTag

    Have a look at OSX Daily for tweaks and hints.
     
  13. Maziar macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 22, 2010
    #14
    I recently got a MBA and here are the apps I found quite useful(free)
    VLC
    Perian
    Unarchiver
    MplayerX
    Twitter
    SMC Fan control
    Utorrent
    Skype
    Better touch tool
     
  14. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #15
    Sophos should be avoided, as it could actually increase your Mac's vulnerability, as described here and here.
    You don't need any 3rd party antivirus software to protect Mac OS X from malware.
     
  15. PDFierro macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2009
    #16
    I have been using Chrome on a PC ever since the day it came out, but I probably wouldn't even think to use it on a Mac when I get my Air soon. I imagine Safari offers better integration.

    How is it using the PS3 controller? I'm going to get the GTA trilogy and maybe another light game or two, and I was just going to use the keyboard. I wasn't sure what external game pads were available for the Mac, is the PS3 controller the best option?

    Anyway, for apps I just search through the store and see what I would use. I need my screenwriting software, and there are some good productivity apps out there.
     
  16. TheBaconKing macrumors regular

    TheBaconKing

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2010
    Location:
    Northwest Arkansas
    #17
    I have no issues getting the controller to connect via USB, but bluetooth is pretty hit or miss for me. Every now and then it refuses to connect and asks for a passcode, which never works. I don't know how to fix it other than eventually it begins to work on its own.

    Getting started and setting it up to work with Vice City wasn't hard either. You could do without the $8 Gamepad companion app, but since I bought it I will use it. You can configure the buttons in the settings of the game.

    Overall I like it, it takes me back to my PS2 days playing GTA all the time. I'm not much of a computer gaming person though, so I doubt I will be trying the controller out with any other games.
     
  17. PDFierro macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2009
    #18
    Thanks. I did some quick Googling, and seems like the Sony controller is a great option. GamePad Companion looks interesting, might have to try that out if I don't like the controls. But cool that it can act as a mouse for the Mac.

    I'm not a big gamer either but I used to be, in fact I stopped playing games a few years ago. I beat GTA IV and then lost interest in them. But seeing the GTA games on the app store has me wanting to play them, like you.

    The only game I played on a computer was Stranglehold, and I was actually pretty damn good with the keyboard.
     
  18. TornadoLowLevel macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2011
    Location:
    UK
    #19

    Thank you for the advice. I guess PC habits die hard!
     
  19. echo.park macrumors regular

    echo.park

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2011
    #20
    Pages, Keynote, SafariOmnibar, iStat Pro, CoconutBattery, NO Flash ;)

    Just my two cents.
     
  20. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2006
    Location:
    Redondo Beach, California
    #21
    Calibre, ebook reader and manager. I'd need Aperture (Apple's license allows you to run Apertur on two computers. One desktop and one notebook) and I might be able to use Garage band and not have to get Logic.

    What you need depends on what you DO with your computer and if this is your only computer.
     
  21. komoornik macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2011
    #22
    Monolingual maybe ?

    Coz you never feel bad about some more space :)
     
  22. pittgoose macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2011
    #23
    Chrome

    I use Chrome on my MBA instead of safari because my computer at work is a PC and i like that i only have to maintain one set of bookmarks. Otherwise i would totally use safari or maybe firefox.
     
  23. iBreatheApple macrumors 68020

    iBreatheApple

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2011
    Location:
    Florida
    #24
    Chrome eats system resources like a beast.
     
  24. willgreene99 macrumors regular

    willgreene99

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2010
    Location:
    DFW
    #25
    FireFox
    iWork
    Adium
    Evernote
    FileZilla
    Caffeine
    Calendar
    iStat Menus
    Skitch
    UltraEdit

    These are what I use the most.
     

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