Newbie needs hints about home folder name, display, sound effects, & movie stutters

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by kanketsu, Oct 1, 2007.

  1. kanketsu macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2007
    #1
    Hello guys, after using a Tecra M2V (1.5GHz, 512MB RAM) for about a year (and reading macrumors for the last six months), I was very excited when my new 2.16GHz + 1GB RAM Macbook arrived on my desk yesterday. However, now I do feel like a fish out of water... It seems like I have lots and lots to learn about OS X. I'm sure that I will take the advantage eventually, but I guess asking for little help can speed things up a bit :D

    Okay, my first question is: I want to change the short name used as the home folder's name. Does this mean that I have to re-install the whole system (BTW, I also want to split the 120GB into 2, or perhaps three partitions)?

    My second question has something to do with the display. It looks like the colors are washed-out or something; everything looks pale. I tried to customize it with the system preference (you know, the "slide until the apple blends with the background"), but alas, I couldn't get it right. Perhaps there is an easier way to calibrate it? I'm thinking something like calibrating a TV set - just turn the contrast and color saturation level up & down until it looks vibrant enough to me. Sorry if I sounds dumb. :D

    Question number 3: I can't make a new file by right-click a folder in Finder and choose something like "new text file", can I? I have to open the respective application and then make a new file from there, is that correct?

    Question number 4: Is there a way to change the font size displayed on the menu bar? You know, the File-Edit-View-Go-Window-Help?

    Question number 5: There's an .mpeg file that runs smoothly on my Tecra, but not so on the Macbook. The video (but not the audio) stutters occasionally if I play it with Quicktime. The video doesn't stutter if I play it with VLC, but if I try to 'jump' to a certain point, the video stops about three seconds before it resumes at that chosen point (but the audio doesn't lag as the video, it jumps right away). What could be the cause of it?

    Question number 6: Well, this looks trivial.. This machine is amazingly quiet. By quiet, I mean it doesn't make a sound effect if I click a folder or something. The only sound effect I heard so far is the one played after I copy files from my USB drive to the Macintosh HD. BTW, I chose the "tour" option in iWork 08, and doesn't hear any sound for the whole presentation. Is it supposed to be silent presentation like that?
    It should be noted that the first time I booted the Macbook, when I was prompted to choose language etc, there is a guy's voice that narrated things. However, that time I pushed the "back" button & then pressed the power button. Now I don't remember what exactly happened then, but that guy's voice was no longer heard during the setup process.
    Movie clips runs fine, though.

    Well, there are more questions I'd like to ask, but I guess those six should help me begin to grasp how OS X works.

    Thank you for your time, reading the lengthy questions. :)
     
  2. Not-a-cliche macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2007
    #2
    Unfortunately, there is no way to change the Short Name, who knows why? You could reinstall the system but, you know...can you be bothered? DO NOT rename the Home folder, this is a common mistake, DO NOT do it.

    Not sure about Q2. You might try putting up the contrast. It's in the Universal Access panel of Sys Prefs.

    The third question is right. You have to open your apps to do it.

    Q4: Hmm....I don't think so.

    Q5: Sorry, don't know.

    Q6: Yeah, that's what OS X is like...the iWork tour is supposed to be silent, and the voice you heard when hovering over languages was meant to happen, after selecting a language, you don't hear the voice for the rest of the setup.
     
  3. Mitthrawnuruodo Moderator emeritus

    Mitthrawnuruodo

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2004
    Location:
    Bergen, Norway
    #3
    1. You can change the short name, but it's not really worth it, especially if you want to repartition, anyway.

    2. Sorry, never had any need to do anything with the colours...

    3. You could always try and see if you cannot make something in Automator... that allows you to make small context menu items for different tasks...

    4. TinkerTool will let you do this (and a few other helpful things). (And the Set to default fonts might come in handy ;))

    5. No idea.

    6. Don't know. I would see in System preferences (and start with Sounds and possibly Universal Access) and see if there's anything looking funky...
     
  4. yellow Moderator emeritus

    yellow

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #4
    5. Likely because you have a Macbook. There's no video card, so the RAM and process are used to process video.

    6: Becuase there are no frivolous sound effects for those tasks.
     
  5. plinden macrumors 68040

    plinden

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2004
    #5
    The only way to repartition is to reformat and reinstall. You can choose your short name then.

    Quicktime sometimes has issues playing video that hasn't been specifically coded for QT. I've sometimes found that QT will stutter on video that plays properly in iTunes or FrontRow - that doesn't make any sense to me, but it's what I've found. So try importing i to iTunes or move it to your Movies folder and view it with FrontRow. What did you use for video playback on your PC?

    By the way, my wife's first gen 1.83 CD MacBook has no problem playing back the HD video taken from http://www.apple.com/quicktime/guide/hd/, while two PCs I've tried (both with dedicated graphics cards) drop frames.
     
  6. kanketsu thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2007
    #6
    Thanks for the replies, guys. I'm going to do a clean install, but I guess I'll be messing around for a while before that (try to install many apps, choose what's the best for me, etc.) :D

    @plinden:
    I used VLC player to play that particular .mpeg files. It runs perfectly on my supposed-to-be-inferior PC, but gets video lag if I try to 'jump' to a later part of the clips (or going back to a previous part) on the Macbook. Weird..:confused:

    @Mitthrawnuruodo:
    It seems that the Finder's menu bar doesn't get affected by Tinker Tool. That Finder-File-Edit-View-Go-Window-Help stays the same no matter what font size I chose.

    @Not-a-cliche
    Thanks for the pointing where to change the contrast level. Really helps!
     
  7. robbieduncan Moderator emeritus

    robbieduncan

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2002
    Location:
    London
    #7
    2. For some reason the colorsync profile Apple ship on most machines is pretty rubbish. The best thing to do is calibrate your own. To do this open System Preferences, click on Displays then on the Color tab. Click the Calibrate button then check Expert Mode on the first page of the "wizard". Now just follow the instructions to setup your own profile...
     
  8. Mitthrawnuruodo Moderator emeritus

    Mitthrawnuruodo

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2004
    Location:
    Bergen, Norway
    #8
    Hmmm... I thought one of those categories with Lucida as default would affect the menu bar... oh, well, I guess you need to install Developer Tools and go hunting for the correct NIB files... ;)
     
  9. kanketsu thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2007
    #9
    further question about partitions

    @Mitthrawnuruodo:
    Umm.. and this Developer Tools are something I won't get my hands into easily, I presume? :D

    BTW, regarding the partitioning; I intend to split the 120GB into 3:
    - 60GB: Macintosh HD (system & music/ picture duplication due to iTunes & iPhoto)
    - 50GB: "Data" - I will store "big collections" (ripped dvds, mp3 collections) here
    - 10GB: WinXP. Just in case. :D

    Will that do well? Or should I go with 70-40-10? (I'd like to keep system files & music/ pictures files on different partitions because I believe it would be easier for me for backup :confused: - or am I wrong in believing that?)
    Also it is said that I should leave about 10-20% empty space for the system to be able to run perfectly. With three partitions like that, does it mean that I have to leave 10% for each partitions (6GB for 1st, 5GB for 2nd, and 1GB for 3rd)?
     
  10. Mitthrawnuruodo Moderator emeritus

    Mitthrawnuruodo

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2004
    Location:
    Bergen, Norway
    #10
    It should be on your restore DVD, among the optional installs...

    Or you can see here: http://developer.apple.com/tools/

    If you go this way, please, please, backup everything you cannot afford loosing first. (I myself prefer to clone my entire disk to an external using SuperDuper!, but there are other ways to perform your backup.)
     
  11. yellow Moderator emeritus

    yellow

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #11
    Adjust your numbers a little bit. Your 120GB drive will have 114GB of space available.
    For best performance, make sure you have roughly 10% of your boot drive free at all times. Dipping below that is not a good idea.
     
  12. jeremy.king macrumors 603

    jeremy.king

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2002
    Location:
    Fuquay Varina, NC
    #12
    Keep in mind you can only run Boot Camp Assistant on a drive with one partition.

    http://developer.apple.com/tools/download/
     
  13. kanketsu thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2007
    #13
    So, in my case, I should left about 6GB of my C partition free then. How about the D & E? Should I keep 10% free space in each of them too?
     
  14. yellow Moderator emeritus

    yellow

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #14
    Well, pelase note what kingjr said.. you cannot use Bootcamp with more than 2 partitions, unless (theoretically) you use something like iPartition to break up the Mac partition post-bootcamp install. Personally I don't like anything that futzes with my disk partition on the fly.

    Assuming that you did end up with 3 partitions, the only one that you really need to be concerned about with the "10% rule" is your boot partition, be that Mac OS X or WinXP. The data partition.. you can pack that one to the rafters and be fine.
     
  15. kanketsu thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2007
    #15
    @yellow:

    Got that. Thanks for the advice! :D

    But you know what, after playing around with OS X for a few days, I'm not sure if I'm going to install Windows (and creating the related partition) anymore. It seems like I won't really need it. Besides, my good ol' Tecra is still around if I somehow need to use windows in the future.. so I might end up with just 2 partitions; one for system & one for data.

    BTW, you said that I should "adjust the number a little bit". Does it mean that 60GB is pretty much enough for a "system drive"? Or should I raise to, say, 70GB?
     
  16. yellow Moderator emeritus

    yellow

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #16
    I meant because you were basing it on a static 120GB, which it won't be.

    Personally, I don't buy into the whole partition notion and it's served me just fine for a very, very, very long time.
     
  17. kanketsu thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2007
    #17
    Okay, thanks. :)

    So (approximately) 60GB should be fine for a "system drive" then?
     
  18. yellow Moderator emeritus

    yellow

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #18
    I think so. A full install of OS X, plus basic apps (Office, etc) runs around 15GB.

    I'd suggest getting an external hard drive and partitioning it along similar lines (at least 1 partition = to your boot partition) and using it as a (bootable) backup. I prefer SuperDuper. Free, but the bells and whistles cost $. But not much. And totally worth it IMO.

    http://www.shirt-pocket.com/SuperDuper/SuperDuperDescription.html
     

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