PC user-New to Mac ....Help

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Mastic, Mar 6, 2014.

  1. Mastic macrumors newbie

    Mar 6, 2014
    Hi all
    I am a Win XP PC user who is new to to my iMac and I am finding it very difficult to get things working. For example my Grab' program doesn't work, when I click the icon nothing happens.
    I installed Skype but although it works there are no menues or anything to set up the options I want. How do you uninstall programs on a Mac? Perhaps the Skype needs to be installed again???
    I installed my favorite browser, Firefox, but it doesn't work well, for example I can't find many of the settings that my old Windows Fairefox has, how do I tell it to always keep the tabs when I shut it down?
    The iMac is a beautiful looking machine but the learning curve is steep and is not aided by what I consider is a very poor and difficult to use help system.
  2. Mr.Skynet macrumors newbie


    Mar 3, 2014
    Stick with it man! I use to be a PC user years ago too, and it just takes time getting use to the new OS. To uninstall a program all you need to do is delete it from the application folder (located in finder). It's not like windows. There is not add/remove software utility.
  3. talmy macrumors 601


    Oct 26, 2009
    Programs don't necessarily have windows, but there will be a menu bar at the top of the screen. When you start Grab, you should be seeing Grab at the top of the screen with menu items File Edit Capture Window and Help. Skype may also be doing the same thing. In Firefox, everything you can set is under Preferences and it looks a lot like the Windows version to me.

    To uninstall an application, open Finder, go to Applications, and drag the application to the trash.

    I've always recommended David Pogue's "Missing Manual" series for thorough coverage of OS X. For "switchers" this is the best bet: Switching to the Mac the missing manual, Mavericks Edition
  4. Mastic thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 6, 2014
    When you say delete it from the application folder do you mean drag and drop it from the folder to tw waste paper basket icon?


    YES!!!! It does have menu options at the top of the screen for both Grab and Skype. That, although it may work perfectly, is designed to fool the unsuspecting, it's certainly an unexpected place to see those controls. I will have a look at your link shortly, thanks for your help.

    BTW I installed Google Earth, dragged and dropped the icon in to the Applications folder but it doesn't appear there, however dragging and dropping a second time I get a message that it already exists in the folder so it seems that the folder window is to small to show everything in it, do you know of a fix for that problem?
  5. ElectronGuru macrumors 65816

    Sep 5, 2013
    Oregon, USA
    Youve taken a big important step. Lets share a few ideas to get you going:

    It will feel like opposite land, because MS often made things opposite when writing windows, to create differentiation. A simple example is the arrow. Mac is black with a white frame. MS is white with a black frame. So too with other approaches.

    MS has a menu set for every application. Then each window within that app frame shares the same menu set. With Mac, all applications share the same menu bar and its always and exclusively at the top of the screen. You click on the windows of different apps and the menu set changes between apps. This is disorienting because an app like grab has no window (which is rare), so everything is in the bar, even after you click it.

    Instead of a start menu in the bottom left, there is an apple menu in the upper left. That menu bar has everything that isnt either in the dock or a right click menu. The apple is constant, this is a universal menu with universal controls. The second menu has the name of the upper most app. You click on a skype window, the second menu should say Skype. This is where preferences are found.

    Consider finding a book or videos meant to show all the differences from XP. You already have a working knowledge, so you just need a map to find where all the stuff went!
  6. ApfelKuchen, Mar 7, 2014
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2014

    ApfelKuchen macrumors 68030

    Aug 28, 2012
    Between the coasts

    Definitely not designed to confuse. Mac, and this particular convention, pre-dates Windows. There are somewhat different approaches, because a) Microsoft couldn't copy Mac feature for feature, b) legitimate differences of opinion on user interface design, and c) Windows' need to accommodate legacy DOS applications.

    In both Mac and Windows, only one program has "focus" on the screen at a time (whichever program is on top.) In Mac, that app takes over the menu bar at the top of the screen. In Windows, the application window, wherever it's located, contains its menu bar.

    In Mac, the menu bar automatically tells you which application is on top - it's named right in the menu bar.

    Windows gives a variety of visual cues as to which app is on top, but the menu bar is not one of them.

    You'll get used to looking (and mousing) to the top of the screen for the menu bar, and you'll probably come to like the fact that the app is named right in the menu bar.

    Windows, when it was introduced, had to accommodate DOS applications as well as apps written specifically to conform to Windows specifications. There was no way for Windows to grab a menu bar from a DOS program (if it existed at all), and place it at the top of the screen, Mac-style. For the sake of having a consistent user interface, the menu bars for native Windows applications were kept within the application window as well.

    Quite honestly, Microsoft had a much harder time making Windows work than Apple had with Mac, because Microsoft had to provide a way for DOS programs to work inside a window, respond to a mouse, work on a wide variety of PCs that weren't even built with Windows in mind, etc., while from the very beginning, Macs only ran programs written explicitly for Mac, on machines build explicitly for Mac.

    The Applications folder is just like any other window (in Mac or Windows) - it can be resized by clicking and dragging the border or corner of the window, and if there's more info than fits in the window, it has scroll bars (though they may be hidden, depending on your System Preferences settings).

    You can change the behavior of those scroll bars by going into Apple Menu (which is always present in the upper left corner) > System Preferences > General: Show scroll bars: (My guess is that yours are currently set to "When scrolling.")
  7. Mastic thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 6, 2014
    When I say applications folder I mean the Applications folder icon that lives at the bottom of the screen with a heap of other programs. I did try resizing the window that opens when you click that folder icon but it can't be resized. So what am I doing wrong???
  8. firedept macrumors 603


    Jul 8, 2011
    This is making sense now. The way you are trying to change the icon size can not be done. The view from the Dock into the Applications Folder is called Stacks. The icon size in Stacks can not be changed as far as I know and I will be corrected if I am wrong.

    The only way to change icon size is by opening Finder and right clicking in the folder area. This will open a Show View Options window which will allow you to set some preferences to size and arrangement of files in Finder, but only in Finder, not in Stacks on your Dock.

    Attached Files:

  9. Obi Wan Kenobi macrumors 6502

    Obi Wan Kenobi

    Mar 9, 2011
    London, UK
    Starting out advice

    1 The key to getting on with Macs after using PCs is to forget all the folder and menu methods you had to learn to use Windows. Instead, just keep an eye on the top menu bar, and do what seems natural. Don't be afraid to click on things to see what they do.

    2 A very helpful keyboard shortcut to finding things on a Mac is to press 'cmd' (the button next to the space bar) + the space bar.

    This brings up a search box in the top left of your screen. Whatever you type in there, it will find.

    3 To see or change settings or preferences, press 'cmd' + ','

    If you wish to learn more about Macs I also recommend David Pogue's book Switching to Mac. It was funny and helpful. To be perfectly honest though, you don't need it, just work on point 1 above.
  10. BrianBaughn macrumors 603


    Feb 13, 2011
    Baltimore, Maryland
    RE: Uninstalling Apps

    Please don't start uninstalling apps by removing them from the Applications folder until you have a pretty good idea of what you're doing.

    If the app is a Mac "System" app you could be causing a heap of trouble that will probably have to be rectified by completely re-installing your system.

    If the app is a more complicated one that installs background daemons into your System folders then trashing it from the Applications folder obviously wouldn't be un-installing it.
  11. hallux macrumors 68030


    Apr 25, 2012
    You're talking about Launchpad then (you can confuse people here easily by saying you're in the Applications folder). Do a 2-finger swipe to scroll to a different page of icons, or do as others suggest and open a Finder window and click the Applications folder, then you can see all the applications installed.

    Th other way to launch it is to do a cmd-space and type Earth in the search box, this will locate the application and show in the results list.

    If you want to do screenshots, OS X has 4 different commands to do various types of screenshots. MacMost has a great list of keyboard shortcuts I have printed and hanging on my wall here at work.
  12. mtngoatjoe macrumors regular


    Jun 10, 2008
    Go here: http://support.apple.com/videos/#macos and watch the videos. The first is a video for switchers (such as yourself). Some of the videos are a little dated, so don't get hung up if the video doesn't quite match what you see.

    You can also go to youtube.com and search for videos. "How do I use Mac OS X Mavericks" is a good start.

    Watch some videos and it will start to make sense.

    Also, at some point, you're probably going to ask about iPhoto and how it works with your folders of photos. Don't worry, many switchers get confused by iPhoto and the way OS X manages photos. We'll be here to help you figure it out. (The folks that aren't confused by this are usually the ones that used Lightroom on a PC).
  13. TheBlackLabEdge macrumors newbie

    Aug 4, 2013
    I can't give you any help except for the fact that I made this same switch last August. After a month I was ready to switch back; after 3 months I let my college daughter borrow it for 3 months.

    Two weeks into letting her borrow it I couldn't stand it & found an excellent used 15" & traded her back for my new one when she came home to visit.

    Now I find myself trying to two finger click @ work instead of right clicking.
  14. takeshi74 macrumors 601

    Feb 9, 2011
    As stated above it's not designed to fool anyone nor is its location unexpected. It's a different user interface. You can't just assume that everything works the same as in Windows. I had little trouble adapting. It takes time to learn and don't be afraid to play around with it.
  15. imajez macrumors regular


    Mar 11, 2014
    Except LR works in a very different manner to iPhoto with regard to folders and file structure.
    LR shows your folder structure exactly as it is on the HD whereas iPhoto sticks all your images into an undecipherable mess of hidden folders that bears no relationship to how you view/organise images in iPhoto/Aperture.
  16. imajez macrumors regular


    Mar 11, 2014
    Some quick tips:
    In System Preferences, go to Keyboard and click on modifier keys button and swap Cmd + Cnrtl keys with each other. This makes the basic keyboard shortcuts the same as on a PC and is far more ergonomic to boot. Whilst there, you can also turn off the 'caps locks key', one of my favourite little things about OSX. :D
    To do the same as Alt+Tab to swap between open programmes, you do Cntl+Tab [if you've switched keys as I suggested, Cmd + Tab otherwise]. And Cntl+` to swap between different windows/files whilst in programme.

    As for removing apps, only remove things you personally installed and if you simply drag to the trash then all sorts of crap can get left behind. Best to use a utility like Appzapper which also removes preferences and such like too.
  17. mtngoatjoe macrumors regular


    Jun 10, 2008
    What does a folder structure give you? Does it tell you where your photos are on the hard drive? Nope. It's just a graphical representation of your files. So is iPhoto. The difference being that iPhoto is designed to keep track of thousands of photos, giving you multiple organization option. Your folder structure can store just as many photos as iPhoto, but fails miserably at sorting and cataloging them. For example, you simply can't use a folder structure to find every 5-star photo of someone. Or every photo of a particular person and/or place.

    If you don't use very many of your photos, then yeah, your folder structure can work. But don't make iPhoto's library structure sound flawed because of that.
  18. imajez, Mar 14, 2014
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2014

    imajez macrumors regular


    Mar 11, 2014
    Actually a folder structure does just that. I have 20+ Hard drives with images on. Not all in or attached to the computer at the same time, so yes I do know exactly where my files are.

    Uh, you obviously do not know how to use LR then. I have hundreds of thousands of images all neatly stored in heirachical date/description folders and I also have a multitude of smart collections, dumb collections and multitude of ways of filtering through my images using metadata, like all 5 star images or Photoshop tutorial images that demonstrate a specific PS tool's function.
    Anyone who insists that folders or metadata is THE SINGLE best way is deluding themselves. Both systems have flaws, yet they complement each other very nicely. LR uses both concepts, iPhoto just the one. So it's a bit rubbish if you want to use a good organised folder structure or want to keep with your already organised work structure. And what those who evangelise about metadata searching forget, is that to do that successfully it involves an awful lot of work labelling, rating, keywording. Which to be frank most people are not going to do properly and unless you do it thoroughly, then metadata organising simply doesn't work.
    The other huge, huge downfall to iPhoto/Aperture's proprietary/random folder structure is no other programmes can find your work. So if you want to use any other programme including Finder [spit!], you will struggle. My filing system can be easily read/accessed by any programme or OS, so If I need to use Capture One or Windows for work, it's dead easy to do so.
  19. talmy macrumors 601


    Oct 26, 2009
    Technically, mtngoatjoe is correct. A disk drive is a linear storage device consisting of millions of sectors. The folders (and files for that matter) are mapped onto the drive in what can appear to be an arbitrary fashion. Ironically, the computer doesn't know where your files are if they are on a drive that isn't attached however if you use referenced media in Aperture (and I guess iPhoto) you see (reduced resolution) images on detached drives.

    Actually iPhoto and Aperture both support folders which can be nested. It just isn't stored on the drive in the same way. But as I stated above, even the folder hierarchy you see in Finder (or LR) is also an abstraction.

    On the other hand, any Mac app that uses the Media Browser (which is built into OS X so any app developer can use it) gets easy access to photos set up in iPhoto or Aperture but difficult access to any other location. This includes iWork apps, iMovie, FCPX, background/screen saver images, even Microsoft Office apps.

    The "proprietary/random" folder structure of the iPhoto/Aperture library is actually easy to access if you want to do so. It's just a package. All the original images are in the Masters folder and they are then subdivided by the date and time they were imported -- year folders containing month folders containing day folders containing timestamp (year/month/day/hour/minute/second) folders of the images. So if you want access by other than the application's Export command or the Media Browser you can get it.
  20. MisterMe macrumors G4


    Jul 17, 2002
    OK, newbie. Get a grip. You are in new land, you need to learn new ways. Instead of fighting the Mac, you should devote your energies to learning it.

    You complaints about iPhoto is just plain silly. Lightroom is a commercial paid application from Adobe. iPhoto is a free application that is bundled with every Mac [and iOS device]. Apple's competitor to Lightroom is not iPhoto, it is Aperture. Aperture can handle iPhoto libraries or user file structures. But guess what--so too can iPhoto. The major difference is that iPhoto is not intended to be used as a professional tool. Aperture is.

    But it you really have a boner for Lightroom, then you don't have to go back to Windows. Lightroom is available for the Mac and has been so from the very beginning, IIRC. A new license will hit you for $186 US. Because you are Windows user, you will want to see if Adobe will give you a Windows to Mac crossgrade.

    It is better to light a candle than to curse the darkness.--Eleanor Roosevelt.
  21. mtngoatjoe macrumors regular


    Jun 10, 2008
    Sorry to disagree with you (again), but I HATE the ergonomics of the control key. I think it's position is just completely wrong. That said, if you like it, then more power to you. But my brain just doesn't understand why you would.:D
  22. talmy macrumors 601


    Oct 26, 2009
    I've been using computers so long, the control key used to be to the left of the A, where the Caps Lock key is in modern keyboards. I've always found caps lock useless. On Windows systems I've mapped the Caps Lock key to be Control and on Macs, where the Command function is used much like the Control function in Windows, I map the Command function to Caps Lock.

    Even more exciting (?) I still use 25 year old Northgate Omnikey keyboards which have the Control key to the left of A and a Caps Lock key to the left of the space bar. So with this keyboard on my iMac I map the Caps Lock key to Command -- even though its a different physical location I get the same results of having two Command keys on the left side of the keyboard and no Caps Lock key. Unfortunately I don't know how to map the Caps Lock key to be a Windows key in Windows, but I can get along without a Windows key (can't say that about Command key).
  23. mtngoatjoe macrumors regular


    Jun 10, 2008
    I use this quite often when uploading photos to various websites. But I've found that flagging them first is VERY helpful. Last night, for example, Walgreens had a $1 8x10 photo collage special (coupon code '8X10PRINT99'). So, using my existing smart albums, I quickly found the photos I wanted to upload, flagged them, and then quickly uploaded them via Safari without having to export the photos from iPhoto.

    Apple could make one huge improvement. Currently, there us a huge delay when you access the iPhoto library from a dialog box. I often have to wait 10 or more seconds to get access to my photos. I think it would be a simple matter for Apple to give quicker access to the Flagged photos (or any other use designated album) before it finishes processing the entire library.
  24. Bones519 macrumors newbie

    Feb 26, 2014
    Actually you don't have to get a new LR license for Mac. A LR license is good for Windows or Mac. I just migrated over to Mac a couple of weeks ago and I have LR 5 running just fine using the same license number that I used on my old Windows box.
  25. snorkelman macrumors 6502a


    Oct 25, 2010

    right click on the applications folder in the dock

    make sure its set to 'display as folder' and 'view content as grid'

    now left click on the Applications folder in your dock. When the contents of it appear on screen hold the CMD key on your keyboard and press the - key to make the icons smaller, or the + key to make them larger.

    Theres around 20 sizes you can set the to (although a lot of them are so enormous to be totally impractical). I think the default is two or three sizes up from smallest possible.

    You can also set them up to View as list which would see them arranged as one big scrollable list (fixed size in that configuration no ability to CMD - or CMD + to alter the icon size)

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