How to SSH into your device from a Mac and change your root password

By Joaquim Barbosa on Feb 3, 2017

Sometimes it is necessary to connect to your mobile device from a computer, for troubleshooting purposes or to use a tool which runs from the computer. For example, tihmstar’s Prometheus suite downgrades your device by sending commands to it from the computer on which it, and the files it uses, are stored. The connection used to do this is called SSH, and is normally provided by the OpenSSH package (or an equivalent client such as Dropbear).

In this guide we will show you how to use SSH to connect to your device from your computer. We will also go through how to change the default passwords on your device, because once you have installed OpenSSH, anyone can log in using the default passwords if you do not change them. This is a major security risk, and so everyone who has OpenSSH installed should follow this procedure. Read More

 

How to fix TinyUmbrella v9.3.4 crashing on launch

By Joaquim Barbosa on Dec 6, 2016

Many jailbreakers will be familiar with the program TinyUmbrella, which has traditionally been one of the best ways to save SHSH blobs for their iOS devices onto their Macs for safekeeping. What SHSH blobs are, their function, and how to save them is outside the scope of this article, (I will put something together soon on this), but suffice to say that saving these blobs is of some importance to many jailbreakers and that TinyUmbrella has been the go-to application for doing so for a long while.

Whilst the application was updated as recently as August by its creator Semaphore, many Mac users (myself included) have noted that the new version, 9.3.4, gives an error on launch and cannot be used at all. This guide will walk you through the fix to get your umbrella back up again on Mac, so you can carry on wishfully saving those blobs.
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How to enable AirDrop file transfers between unsupported Macs and over Ethernet

By Joaquim Barbosa on Dec 5, 2016

The AirDrop file transfer protocol, introduced with Mac OS X Lion and iOS 7, is a fast and convenient way to transfer files between Apple devices. The current version of the service is interoperable between iOS and macOS, but requires both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi to be active in order to work. It also requires Mac OS X Yosemite or newer and a hardware model from 2012 or later.

However, the version of AirDrop that shipped as standard with OS X between 10.7 (Lion) and 10.9 (Mavericks), whilst unable to send files to iOS devices, works without Bluetooth and on Mac models going back as far as 2008. Luckily, alongside the newer version, this legacy mode is still included on all Mac models to date, and as this guide will show, can be modified to have an even broader functionality.
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How to hide mounted volumes from your desktop and the Finder

By Joaquim Barbosa on Dec 2, 2016

We’ve already covered how to completely prevent partitions from mounting under macOS but, as one iDB reader pointed out, sometimes you want a partition mounted and ready to use but still want the benefit of it not cluttering up your desktop and the Finder sidebar.

The example our reader enquired about was Time Machine, and that really is a perfect case in point. Many people want their Time Machine partition constantly mounted and backing up throughout the day but don’t need it to be visible at all. Finder’s preferences allow for hiding all volumes from the desktop but offer no control on a volume-by-volume basis, and though drives can be manually removed from the Finder window sidebar, this is an inelegant extra step and the drives still show elsewhere.

Luckily, there is a way to leave specific volumes mounted whilst hiding them from both the desktop and the entirety of the Finder in one fell swoop.

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How to extend Quick Look preview functionality on your Mac

By Joaquim Barbosa on Nov 29, 2016

If you’re not familiar with the Quick Look feature on macOS, try selecting a picture, folder, or text document on your computer and pressing the space bar. The rich preview that pops up is Quick Look working its magic. Apple introduced Quick Look in Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard and it has since gained support for many more file types natively, such as Microsoft Office and Adobe Suite documents.

I use it daily and it has become an automatic part of my workflow, a natural response to wanting to inspect a file without waiting for a program to launch and without leaving off what I’m doing.

However, the problem that Quick Look faces is support. It requires a plugin for each file type it can preview, and out-of-the-box only a handful are supplied. More obscure file types are neglected, and display only a blank pane with the file icon, name, size, and date modified. In this guide, I will detail how to add plugins to Quick Look for a richer and more useful preview experience.

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How to prevent partitions from mounting when you boot up, log in, or connect drives to your Mac

By Joaquim Barbosa on Nov 24, 2016

With the exception of partitions in unreadable formats and certain hidden partitions such as EFI and Recovery HD, the default behaviour of macOS is to mount all partitions of a drive on boot-up, login, or on connecting an external drive.

Whilst this behaviour is useful for the novice or for those connecting a single USB stick to copy some files, it can become unwieldy and even annoying if you have many multi-partitioned drives attached to your Mac.

For example, my desktop Hackintosh has three internal drives, each with at least two partitions, and one of these drives is not even needed when booted under macOS – it is for Windows 10 and Linux. Add to this a couple of external hard drives with partitions for storage, OS installers and Time Machine backups for other computers, and your desktop and Finder sidebar can begin to look a real mess. It also takes time for the drives to mount on every boot and unmount on sleep or shutdown.

This guide will detail how to ensure only the drives of your choosing mount automatically, leaving the rest unmounted within macOS. Read More

 

Force quit not working on your Mac? Try this

By Anthony Bouchard on Nov 11, 2016

When an app is dragging its feet on your Mac, you can force quit the app and try opening it again and usually this clears the problem. On the other hand, there can sometimes be circumstances where even trying to force quit an app doesn’t seem to work. Bummer, right?

If you’re having trouble trying to force quit an app on your Mac, we’ve got some ideas you can try to kill that app and re-launch it. Read More

 

How to stop the new MacBook Pro from automatically turning on when the lid is open

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 31, 2016

Aside from the marquee Touch Bar feature and other hardware advances, the new MacBook Pro introduces a tweaked boot process where the machine automatically starts up when you open its lid or connect it to power. To avoid forcing users to listen to the startup chime every time they open the lid, Apple’s also decided to disable the boot chime on the new notebook by default (you can easily re-enable it).

But what about the mentioned auto-boot features? Unfortunately, Apple does not provide user-facing switches in System Preferences to control the new boot on power and boot on lid capability. With a little help from Terminal and smart folks over at Pingie, you can manually stop the late-2016 MacBook Pro from automatically powering on when you lift the lid or connect it to a power adapter or an external display. Read More

 

How to bring back the classic boot chime on the new MacBook Pro

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 31, 2016

The new MacBook Pro has ditched the iconic boot chime that’s been a signature part of the Mac startup process over the last 17 years. Pingie discovered that the sound is not gone entirely. Apple’s just disabled it and it’s possible to bring it back should you want. In this quick tutorial, we’ll show you how to re-enable the boot chime on your late-2016 MacBook Pro with a simple Terminal command. Read More

 

How to disable the startup tone on your Mac

By Anthony Bouchard on Sep 12, 2016

Whenever you turn on your Mac, you typically hear a startup tone just before your computer boots up. The tone is there to let you know your computer has passed a pre-boot test and its hardware is working properly.

Some people, however, prefer to boot up their computers in silence. If you’re one of those people, we’ll show you in this tutorial how you can disable the start-up tone on your Mac. Read More

 
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