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Last active April 7, 2024 18:44
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Fixing macOS 10.14, 10.15, 12

Dark main menu without the rest of dark mode

  1. Set Light mode
  2. defaults write -g NSRequiresAquaSystemAppearance -bool Yes
  3. Log out and log back in
  4. Set Dark mode

Disable floating screenshot thumbnail

  1. Open
  2. Click "options" at the bottom of the screen
  3. Uncheck "Show Floating Thumbnail"

Screenshots in Dropbox without messing with the clipboard

  • For single-dropbox installations:
    defaults write location /Users/rsms/Dropbox/Screenshots
  • For multi-dropbox installations:
    defaults write location "'/Users/rsms/Dropbox (Figma)/Screenshots'"
    (double quotations needed for defaults to be able to parse the path string)

Disable audible chime when plugging into power

defaults write ChimeOnNoHardware -bool true && killall PowerChime

Enable hold-to-repeat-key in apps

macOS 10.7 "Lion" changed the function of pressing and holding down a keyboard key. Instead of creating repeated keystrokes, a UI shows up to allow selecting alternate glyphs for a key. For example, press and hold "E" key would shown options for "e", "é", "ë", etc.

If you know how to use modifiers like ⌥ to input alternate glyphs, disabling this feature is probably a good idea. You can disable it per app like this:

defaults write com.sublimetext.3 ApplePressAndHoldEnabled -bool false

Or write it to the global defaults:

defaults write -g ApplePressAndHoldEnabled -bool false

You'll need to restart the app after wards, or sign out and back in again in the case of setting it globally.

If you have a cat, this is an important change to make in order to be able to get accurate "cat paw on keyboard" logs.

Set display to integer scale

Many recently made MacBooks comes with macOS preset to a non-integer scaling factor. This causes issues if you are to do any design work on the computer (i.e. pixels won't be scaled evenly and things will look a little blurry in certain situations.) Fix this by:

  1. Apple ▶︎ Hold ALT key and select System Information... ▶︎ Hardware, Graphics/Displays ▶︎ Read the "Resolution" value of your display
  2. Apple ▶︎ System Preferences ▶︎ Dispays ▶︎ Displays tab ▶︎ Hold ALT key and click on "Resolution: Scaled" ▶︎ Hover over each "scale thumbnail" and look at the "Looks like XXxYY" number on the left. Pick the resolution that is either the same (1x) or half (2x) of the value you read in System Information.

Force-disable sub-pixel anti-aliasing (macOS 12)

SPAA is supposed to be "automatic" in macOS 12 but it is of course buggy. Apple removed the UI control for enabling/disabling it from System Preferences, but to remain sane and avoiding accidental property damage as a result from rage over poor text renering, go ahead and permanently disable it forever:

defaults -currentHost write -g AppleFontSmoothing -int 0

Read-only files from Time Machine backup

If you're restoring files from a Time Machine backup (ie by copying them to a new computer), they are likely to have extended ACL attributes (APFS only) which will prevent the restored files from being written to. Clearing xattrs, changing permissions in Finder or using regular chmod won't work. You'll have to erase the ACL entries. Example:

sudo chmod -R -N ~/something-you-copied

You may also want to clean up xattrs: (which AFAIK has no effect but can be annoying in ls)

sudo xattr -dr ~/something-you-copied

Disable gatekeeper

CAUTION! This allows running unsigned code. Do NOT disable if you are the kind of person who downloads & runs random apps you find on the internet. Changing this affects the "Security & Privacy" system preferences section (find it under "General" tab, "Allow apps downloaded from:" list.)

sudo spctl --master-disable

Note: for macOS prior to 10.15, run sudo spctl --master disable

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