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Take Control of Customizing Leopard
Mar 05, 2008

Take Control of Customizing Leopard

Come up to speed quickly on Leopard’s new features!

Apple boasts of 300 new features in Leopard, but to make the most of those features, turn to Matt Neuburg for a road map on how to customize Leopard so it’s right for you. Matt shows you how to protect your data with Time Machine, including instructions for searching through previous files with Spotlight. You’ll also learn how to peek at files with Quick Look and Cover Flow, use Spaces effectively, and find tips for customizing Leopard’s updated sidebar. This title covers important changes in Mac OS X 10.5.2!

More Info

Matt explains numerous other key customizations, including how to use the much-improved Spotlight interface, set Finder windows to open in your desired view, configure Open and Save dialogs, arrange items on your toolbar for quick access, and turn on the new Path Bar. Also covered are how to work with Expose, Dashboard, status menus, login items, Internet helper applications, zooming controls, double-headed scroll arrows, and lots more.

Read this book to learn the answers to questions like:

  • What are the major new features in Leopard?
  • How might I change my work habits to get more out of Leopard?
  • How can I "bind" the Finder to all my spaces?
  • How do I customize my Time Machine backups?
  • What’s the best way to use Spotlight to find files on my disk?
  • How can I best work with and configure stacks?
  • How do I assign keyboard shortcuts to menu items?
  • Can I turn off or reassign the Caps Lock key?
  • How do I turn off all those Services in the application menus?

I have an old version of this ebook, but what I want is the 1.1 update. How do I get it?

Start by opening up the “Customizing Leopard” PDF that you do have, in Apple’s Preview or Adobe Reader, for instance. Then, look on page 1—that’s the “cover” page that also has the table of contents on it. Look at the upper right. You should see a Check for Updates link. Click it. From there, you can:

  • Download version 1.1.
  • See any recent comments from the author, or the publisher, about the topic.
  • Sign up to get an email message should any new PDFs be available in the future.

If your button won’t click, you likely have the wrong “tool” chosen for your mouse. If you have trouble selecting a different tool, consult the _TidBITS_ article Solve Link-Clicking Problems When Reading PDFs

Update Plans

We have no plans to update the Leopard edition of this ebook, but new editions about later Big Cat versions of Mac OS X are available, including Take Control of Exploring and Customizing Snow Leopard and Take Control of Using Lion.

Posted by Adam Engst

  1. Fix Your Clicks With Klicko

    In the switch to Mac OS X, what’s the worst change, overall, that Apple made to the interface? It’s clickthrough. At long last, there’s a utility that blocks it. Matt Neuburg, author of Take Control of Customizing Leopard, takes a look at Klicko in his TidBITS article Fix Your Clicks With Klicko.

    Posted by Adam Engst (Permalink)

  2. Screensavers for the 21st Century

    Unsatisfied with Leopard’s standard screensaver selection? Fear not! There’s a whole world of interesting screensavers out there, ready to customize and enliven your idle screen. I went searching for the best screensavers I could find, and reported back on my favorite ones in the TidBITS article Top 10 Screensavers for the 21st Century. Enjoy!

    Posted by Adam Engst (Permalink)

  3. Microsoft Office and Spaces

    If you’re having trouble with Office 2008 in Spaces, you’re probably not alone. Erik Schwiebert, Senior Development Lead for Microsoft’s Macintosh Business Unit recently wrote a blog post discussing bug fixes in Office and - toward the end of the post - talking about how Microsoft has handled problems with Office 2008 and Spaces. You can read it at Erik also linked to a fairly cut-and-dried description of common problems you might encounter with Office 2008 and Spaces; you can read it at

    Posted by Adam Engst (Permalink)

  4. Changing the Size of Things in the Sidebar

    I recently received an email message asking, “Does your new ebook about customizing Leopard show how to increase the size of the icons in the Finder sidebar? Thanks.” Unfortunately, as far as Matt (and I) can figure out, there is no way to increase the size of the icons or of the text. However, if a way of customizing them does come along, we’ll certainly want to mention it here and in any future versions of the ebook.

    Posted by Adam Engst (Permalink)

  5. Listen to Matt Talk about Customizing Leopard

    Matt recently did a podcasting session with Chuck Joiner from MacNotables. Listen to this podcast to get more Leopard advice and to hear Matt’s take on several topics covered in this ebook

    Posted by Adam Engst (Permalink)

The Author

Matt Neuburg is a TidBITS contributing editor and the author of several books about Apple software, including Programming iOS 4. He has been programming computers for 45 years, and has written popular Mac and iOS freeware such as MemoryStick and the TidBITS News app.