May 19, 2014 - Hammondsport Mac Users Group

ATTENDING : Tom B, Al J, Gene N, Nancy D, Gary B, Dottie E.




Right-click (or control-click) on any file, folder or image to produce a handy contextual menu of options such as:

  • Compress - - - your Mac will make a smaller copy of the file into a .zip file which is better for e-mailing.

  • Duplicate - - - your Mac will make an exact duplicate with 'copy' added to file name.

  • Make Alias - - - your Mac will make a shortcut to original with small arrow in icon) - this is a good safeguard to accidentally deleting the original - put it on the desktop, folder bar or Dock.

  • Burn to Disc - - - your Mac, if equipped with burner, will make a CD copy of selected folder or file - buy bulk CD-R discs for best price - usually 15¢ -20¢ per CD - the CD file can be read or drag-copied to another drive for editing.




1) USB FLASH DRIVE - - - simply insert drive into computer USB port, then drag files into it to make a copy - larger USB drives are now available in 8GB, 16GB, 32GB, 64GB - for example USB 16GB Sandisk can currently be found on eBay for $8.


2) BURN A CD / DVD - - - right-click on folder or file to be burned, follow the built-in Mac directions, insert a new CD-R disc or DVD-R - you can backup 700MB of data on a CD and up to 4.7GB on a standard DVD.


3) E-MAIL - - - send your backup files to yourself to store on-line in your e-mail account - it helps to compress them format first by right-clicking.



4) DROPBOX or iCLOUD - - - Dropbox is free to setup an account on-line - iCloud is provided free with OSX 10.7,10.8 and 10.9 - use your Apple ID to access it. Upload your backup files to either place - both Dropbox and iCloud are secure folders provided to you on a trusted site (such as Apple) - Tom demonstrated how easy it is to transmit a large file via Dropbox by dropping a picture file into his Mac's Dropbox, then clicking the Share Link to send it to Dottie's email address where she could download the image to her Mac.


5) DISK IMAGE - - - create a small, secure Disk Image (.dmg) by using the Disk Utility found in your Mac Utilities Folder - the disk image can be securely locked with a password, e-mailed to on-line storage, burned to CD or copied to a USB drive for portability - an encrypted disk image is a good place to keep important pin numbers, passwords and private data while traveling - see step-by-step tutorial


6) SHARED COMPUTER - use a 2nd computer (maybe an old one) that can be connected via:

  • WiFi (both Macs need a wireless card) - see how

  • Ethernet cable (CAT 5) - use file sharing in System Prefs - see how

  • Firewire cable (400 or 800) - use 'target' mode T key - see how

    NOTE: Monoprice sells cables of all kinds at very low prices!


7) EXTERNAL HARD DRIVE - buy a backup 320GB HD and USB enclosure for $59 at OWC (Other World Computing) - Tom demonstrated how easy it was to assemble the HD with USB enclosure, plug it into his MacBook Pro, then copy his entire internal HD using the free version of SuperDuper which makes the external HD a bootable clone.



1) SuperDuper! - free to use forever in basic copy-all level - $27 to unlock advanced features.

2) Carbon Copy Cloner - newest version for Snow Leopard to Mavericks ($39) - an older free version (3.4.7) is still available for Tiger and Leopard.

3) Time Machine - free - built into every Mac - what makes Time Machine different from other backup applications is that it not only keeps a spare copy of every file, it remembers how your system looked on any given day—so you can revisit your Mac as it appeared in the past. Time Machine keeps hourly backups for the past 24 hours, daily backups for the past month, and weekly backups until your backup drive is full.



Logitech M185 Wireless Mouse - $9.99 (currently on eBay) - one AA battery, tiny USB transmitter - works great!



Q - Why is my HD getting very sluggish?

A - Check to see if it is getting too full - select your HD, then File > Get Info to find out how much disk space is left - your computer needs at least 10% of total HD to operate correctly - so when your HD is close to 90% full, it's time to upgrade to larger HD or get rid of a lot of files. Disk Utility will show the 'S.M.A.R.T. Status' of your HD and warn you if there are problems developing.

Q - In Mail, when I begin to type an address into a new e-mail, some incorrect addresses keep filling in. How do I stop this?

A - Go to Mail > Window > Previous Recipients to delete incorrect or outdated addresses - read more.

Q - How can I read and write Windows documents on my Mac?

A - Download and install the free OpenOffice.Org application. It is the leading open-source office software suite for word processing, spreadsheets, presentations, graphics, databases and more. It uses open standard format and can also read and write files from other common office software packages. It can be downloaded and used completely free of charge for any purpose. It will run on Windows, Mac OSX (Tiger to Mavericks), PPC and Intel. See all requirements. Note: there is one version for Mac OSX (Intel) and another version for Mac OSX (PPC). Both work great! Also you can make PowerPoints without PowerPoint (see how).


Hammondsport Mac Users Group - Hammondsport, NY 14840 -