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Take Control of Syncing in Tiger
Jul 26, 2007

Take Control of Syncing in Tiger

Learn how to synchronize all your data between Macs, or with mobile phones, PDAs, and iPods!

With clear directions and a humorous touch, Take Control of Syncing in Tiger walks you through tasks like syncing data with your iPhone, iPod, or Apple TV, syncing phone numbers between your Mac and mobile phone or PDA; syncing files between your desktop and laptop Macs; and sharing Safari bookmarks and keychains between Macs. You’ll learn what gear you need and the best ways to move your data between devices, whether your syncing software is built in to Tiger, works through .Mac, or comes from an independent Mac developer.

Is this ebook up-to-date? Excellent question. If you’d like to read a history lesson about how syncing worked at one time in 10.4 Tiger, both conceptually and specifically, you should buy this ebook. The conceptual information is probably somewhat accurate now (in 2012) and will remain so going forward, but nearly all of the specific details are obsolete.

More Info

The book also explains how Apple’s syncing model works under the hood, and when things don’t work as expected, you’ll appreciate its practical troubleshooting advice.

Includes a coupon worth 50% off any syncing utility from PocketMac!

Read this book to learn the answers to questions such as:

  • How does iTunes determine whether a file is a movie or a TV show?
  • How does the Apple TV figure out how many photos to sync?
  • What can I expect when I sync data to and from my iPhone?
  • Can I sync Address Book with my mobile phone?
  • How does one best sync with a Palm these days?
  • Is .Mac a good way to sync files between Macs?
  • How can I most easily sync networked Macs?
  • What should I look for if my sync doesn’t work the way I expect?

I was amazed that your book pointed me to the solution for my problem within 5 minutes of purchasing it. The $10 price was more than worth the money and made me give you this full endorsement for a "Job Well Done"! -Michael Clarke


How do I find the PocketMac coupon?

After you download and unzip your ebook, open it in a PDF reader (typically Apple’s Preview or Adobe Reader). You’ll find the coupon on the second-to-last page.

Has this ebook been updated for Leopard or for anything that happened in 2008?

This ebook was last updated in July 2007. As such, it neither covers Leopard nor MobileMe-based syncing with Tiger. Given the demand for ebooks about Tiger, it is unlikely that we will ever update this ebook to include those (or any) new topics. However, you may instead wish to purchase Take Control of Syncing Data in Leopard.

Does this book cover syncing to the iPhone and the Apple TV?

Absolutely! And if you have an earlier version, the update to version 1.2 is free; just click the Check for Updates button in your copy to access the free update.

Will this book help me sync a handheld PDA with a Macintosh computer and a Windows PC?

Well… not so much… Someone recently wrote in with a question about this - here’s the question and Michael’s answer:

Question: I’d like to synchronize my Palm TX with my many Macs running OS X, and my work PC running Windows XP. I already do this, but would like to use iSync/iCal/Address Book instead of the moribund Palm Desktop on the Mac. Does this book talk about the pros and cons of this approach?

Answer: Generally speaking, you should not sync a handheld device (mobile phone, Palm, etc.) with more than one computer. Syncing with more than one computer vastly increases the possibility of sync conflicts between all the devices involved, and can increase the chances of data corruption as well. Apple includes this warning in its iSync help: "IMPORTANT: You should sync your phone with only one computer. If you sync your devices with more than one computer, your information may not sync correctly (you could see duplicates or wrong information)."

Things can only get even more confused if you sync a single Palm device between both a Mac OS computer and a Windows XP computer, which have rather different ways of syncing information.

The book does not talk about syncing handheld devices with Windows (the title, is, after all, Take Control of Syncing in Tiger). It does discuss the differences between syncing structured information (calendars, contact lists, etc.) and syncing files (images, songs, documents), and it does discuss third-party syncing applications such as Missing Sync, but it does this in the context of the Sync Services underpinnings that Mac OS X 10.4 provides.

Update Plans

October 2009 – This ebook was last updated in July 2007 and has since been replaced by editions about newer versions of Mac OS X.

Posted by Adam Engst

  1. The End of MobileMe Means Big Changes in Syncing Capabilities

    Apple has announced the end of its MobileMe service, effective 30 June 2012, and has also announced that many of its functions will find equivalents in the new iCloud service from Apple, due to debut sometime in the last quarter of 2011. As it turns out, however, a number of syncing features provided by MobileMe are not going to be replaced by equivalent features in iCloud. Apple provides some details what iCloud will include and what it won’t in its Mobile Me transition page (you can also read more about the transition in the TidBITS article, “Apple Details Transition from MobileMe to iCloud,” 24 June 2011).

    Specifically, Apple is shifting the center of the syncing process from your Mac to iCloud; as Steve Jobs said in his World Wide Developer Conference keynote this month, “The truth is in the cloud.” Making the transition to iCloud will be contact, calendar, and bookmark syncing. However, the syncing of Dashboard widgets, keychains, Dock items, and System Preferences will cease to work either when you sign up for iCloud or when MobileMe is turned off on 30 June 2012, whichever comes first.

    This also may mean the end of the line for the “Take Control of Syncing Data” books; until we have a clearer picture of how syncing works in the iCloud paradigm, we can’t begin to plan a new edition, nor even to know if such a book would make sense.

    We do appreciate your support, and will let you know more as soon as we know more.

    Posted by Michael Cohen (Permalink)

  2. Michael Talks about the World of Syncing

    Listen to MacVoices #9107 and find out what author Michael Cohen has been working on lately, and why about 95% of the Syncing Data in Leopard ebook will appear in the Syncing Data in Snow Leopard ebook. Michael discusses what managed data is, and he pulls aside the curtain to help you understand how data syncs between your Mac and other devices.

    Posted by Tonya Engst (Permalink)

  3. Google Sync Beta for iPhone

    Google announced the availability today of Google Sync for iPhone. This service allows you to sync your Google Calendars and Contacts with your iPhone wirelessly, using push technology. The service requires you that you set up an Exchange account on your iPhone and that your iPhone is running the version 2.2 firmware or later.

    You can see the instructions here, and you can see a list of known issues and limitations with the beta here.

    Posted by Michael Cohen (Permalink)

  4. Syncing in Tiger with MobileMe

    In order to take advantage of MobileMe under Tiger, you need to update to Mac OS X 10.4.11. (Yes, Tiger now goes to 11!) On top of that, to use MobileMe’s Web applications, you should run Safari 3 for Tiger or use Mozilla FireFox version 2 or 3. You can read more details about MobileMe, syncing, and Tiger in the TidBITS article, MobileMea Culpa: Apple Apologizes and Explains Tiger Situation. Scroll down a little to find the heading about Tiger.

    Posted by Tonya Engst (Permalink)

The Author

Michael E. Cohen has taught English composition, worked as a programmer for NASA’s Deep Space Network, helped develop the first commercial ebooks at the Voyager Company, and co-founded a major university’s Humanities computing center. He has written several books, including Take Control of PDFpen, Take Control of Pages, and Take Control of TextExpander.