El Capitan

OS X El Capitan 10.11.6 hits Mac App Store with bug fixes and security enhancements

A sixth major software update to OS X El Capitan 10.11 since its September 2015 debut is now available for public consumption as a free-of-charge release on the Mac App Store. To apply the update, launch the Mac App Store on your computer and click the Purchased tab: OS X El Capitan 10.11.6 should be sitting there, waiting for you to download it. If not, give it a few minutes or hours as new software takes some time to propagate across the Internet.

How to use parental controls on your Mac

Parental controls allow you to have more control over your child’s access to your Mac, and they’re an invaluable tool to make sure that they’re only doing what they’re supposed to be doing instead of everything they shouldn’t.

Because many parents allow their children to use their Macs, it’s a good idea to set parental control restrictions on their user account. We’ll show you how this is done in this tutorial.

How to customize system app icons in Mac OS X

My colleague Timothy Reavis shared just a couple of years ago how you can customize the icons of apps on your Mac. On the other hand, it would seem the process to do this has changed slightly in OS X El Capitan.

In this tutorial, we’ll be showing you a method that works on Apple’s latest operating system release for Mac.

Apple posts public betas of iOS 9.3.3 and OS X El Capitan 10.11.6

After seeding iOS 9.3.3 beta 2 and OS X El Capitan 10.11.6 beta 2 to the registered members of the Apple Developer Program yesterday, these new betas are now available to public beta testers who are signed on the Apple Beta Software Program.

Public beta testers can apply these updates through the Software Update mechanism on devices enrolled into the Beta program that run a prior iOS/OS X beta.

Spotlight Suggestions expand to seven new countries, including India and Hong Kong

Spotlight Suggestions, a feature that recommends content from the Internet when searching with Spotlight on an iPhone, iPod touch or iPad with iOS 9.0+ or a Mac running OS X 10.11 El Capitan or later, has expanded to seven additional markets: Hong Kong, India, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore and United Arab Emirates.

Counting these regions, Spotlight Suggestions are now available in a total of 26 major markets around the world, listed on Apple’s iOS Feature Availability webpage.

New Mac extension simplifies opening and switching Terminal to the current folder

A new OS X extension from Hasbrang Productions, the prominent jailbreak community development team, makes it easy to open and switch a new Terminal window to the current working directory, right from the Finder’s contextual menu.

Available at no charge on the Mac App Store, the aptly named TermHere installs itself as a Finder file extension, readily accessible from the right-click menu. It works as advertised and is pretty convenient, more so if you use Terminal frequently.

Ensuring your Mac is receiving updates about new malware and compromised web plug-ins

Among the plethora of built-in OS X features that help keep your Mac secure is something called File Quarantine, a download validation technology that checks any downloads for known malware when you try to open them.

File Quarantine is also available in compatible applications like Safari, Messages, iChat and Mail that download files from the Internet or receive files from external sources, such as email attachments.

Additionally, OS X blocks compromised versions of web plug-ins from functioning, including Java web apps and Adobe Flash content, to further limit your Mac’s exposure to potential zero day exploits.

In this tutorial, we’ll discuss how you can make sure that File Quarantine updates are turned on, which will allow your Mac to receive latest malware definitions and information about compromised web plug-ins from Apple.

Apple seeds new betas of iOS, tvOS and OS X

Apple on Tuesday seeded brand new betas of the iOS, tvOS and OS X operating systems to members of the Apple Developer Program. iOS 9.3.2 beta 4 (build 13F68), tvOS 9.2.1 beta 4 (build 13Y772) and OS X El Capitan 10.11.5 beta 4 are all available for download on devices running earlier betas. Standalone installers can be downloaded through Apple’s Dev Center for developers and are also available for public testing for members of the Apple Beta Software Program.

How to create blank disk images with Disk Utility

Should you ever find yourself in the need to create blank disk images, OS X’s built-in Disk Utility is your friend. A disk image usually has a .dmg extension and appears, looks and behaves like any ordinary file, with one key exception: launching it prompts OS X to mount the volume on the desktop.

These mountable disk images can be useful in a number of situations. For example, you may want to create blank disk images for storage.

Furthermore, disk images can be used as a virtual disk for software distribution, to burn CDs or DVDs and so forth. In this step-by-step tutorial, you’ll learn how to create blank disk images in Disk Utility, at any size, with optional password protection, formatting options and more.

Tip: quickly turn off your Mac’s screen with this handy keyboard shortcut

If you don’t want a bystander to read what’s on your Mac’s screen or just want to temporarily shut off the display—for instance, to save battery—you can take advantage of several built-in OS X features.

For that purpose, I’d typically define hot corners in Mission Control settings so that moving the mouse pointer to the upper left corner would instantly start my screen saver. The problem is, even a blank screen saver won’t completely shut off the display.

As it turns out, OS X makes your life even easier by providing a dedicated keyboard shortcut to quickly turn off a Mac’s display without having to define a screen saver or use dedicated third-party applications.

New betas: iOS 9.3.2 (public only), tvOS 9.2.1 (dev only) and El Capitan 10.11.5 (dev+public)

Just 24 hours after iOS 9.3.2 beta 3 released to Apple’s registered developers, the Cupertino company on Wednesday made the software available to public beta testers who are signed up for the Apple Beta Software Program. In addition, Apple posted new betas of tvOS 9.2.1 and OS X El Capitan 10.11.5 for members of its Apple Developer Program.

The new tvOS 9.2.1 beta 3 (build 13Y768) and OS X El Capitan 10.11.5 beta 3 (build 15F28b) can be obtained via Apple’s portal for developers.

OS X El Capitan 10.11.5 beta 1 also seeded to developers

Just over two weeks after posting OS X El Capitan 10.11.4 for public consumption, Apple this morning seeded the first beta of OS X El Capitan 10.11.5 to its registered developers. A fifth major update to the the most recent operating system powering the Mac, OS X 10.11.5 includes bug fixes, performance improvements and general security and stability fixes.

It is not expected to bring any major user-facing features. The new beta carries a build number of 15F18b and can be installed on computers running a prior OS X beta through the Mac App Store’s Updates tab.