Mac Tips

Getting the most of Mac ID: Unlock your Mac with Touch ID and much more!

Mac ID enables you to use Touch ID on your iPhone or iPad to unlock your Mac. That's cool, but that's not all this useful third-party utility can do.

Mac ID is a two-part tool you get both from the iOS App Store and from the developer's website. Once you've set it up, you can unlock your Mac from your Touch ID-equipped iPhone or iPad. Mac ID can do a lot more too, to help you with security, controlling audio, and more!

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How to keep Mac email from giving away info to spammers

How your Mail app is set to load remote content can give e-mail scammers valuable information about you.

A setting in Apple's Mail app for OS X that makes it more convenient to view your emails may also be telling scammers that you're reading your emails. To make your Mac more secure from potential threats, you can disable the remote content loading function. Follow along and we'll walk you through how!

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How to clean up your Mac's Bluetooth menu

Is your Mac's Bluetooth menu a mess of devices you no longer use? You can clean it up almost instantly!

Bluetooth makes it easy to connect external devices like speakers, mice, keyboards, even printers and other computers. If your Bluetooth menu is a mess and you'd like to clean it up, here's an easy way.

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How to make your Mac automatically start up, sleep and shut down

If you're tired of your Mac not being ready when you are in the morning, or if you want to save electricity, you can set your Mac to start up and shut down on demand.

As power efficient as modern Macs have become, it's still a waste of electricity to have a Mac operating 24 hours a day, 7 days a week if you don't need to. That's why Apple's built in some wake, sleep, start up and shut down features right into the Energy Saver system preferences.

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How to get gigabytes back from Steam

Have you used Valve's popular Steam service to install and play games on your Mac?

If so, you may be wasting a lot of hard drive space. Steam makes it easy to download and play great Mac games. Steam hides your downloaded games, though, which makes it easy to waste dozens or hundreds of GB of hard drive space. Here's how to reclaim it.

J.R. writes:

I just ran DaisyDisk on my Mac and discovered that I have more than 100 GB of files dedicated to Steam. I don't play most of those games. Can I just delete them?

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Can't update Office 2011 on your Mac? Here's the fix!

A change to the previous version of Microsoft's AutoUpdate utility caused updates to break in Office 2011 for OS X. A fix is ready for download.

AutoUpdate 3.0.5 was installed with the last Office update a few days ago. Microsoft has backed off from the mess it made with a new version of AutoUpdate you can download now. The problem only happens if you're using both the Office 2016 preview Microsoft has posted as well as Office 2011.

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How to exclude files from Time Machine backups

Sometimes you don't want Time Machine to back up your files. Here's how to keep that from happening.

Time Machinee, Apple's built-in backup utility, is actually pretty smart about figuring out what to save and what to skip on your Mac. OS X by default excludes a whole bunch of stuff from Time Machine that Apple engineers know the Mac just doesn't need in order to work right after restoring from a backup. There are times, however, when you might want to make it a bit smarter. It could be big but temporary files that would just eat up space, or private files you don't want duplicated anywhere, even for back up. Either way, with a few simple tweaks, you can more storage capacity out of your Time Machine backup disk and spend less time backing up, too.

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Is OS X Yosemite 10.10.3 safe to install?

OS X Yosemite 10.10.3 was released last week. Should you install it?

That's the question posed to me in this week's Mac Help. It seems my previous warnings about not rushing into major operating system updates have created anxiety about any operating system update, even the relatively minor ones, for some long-time iMore readers. That includes last week's OS X Yosemite point release of 10.10.3.

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How to update Flash on your Mac (if it's already installed)

If you get a message to update Adobe Flash on your Mac, use this quick tip to make sure you have the latest version installed.

Adobe periodically updates its Flash software with new features and security updates. If you get a message saying Flash is out of date, there's an easy way to tell if you need to update it.

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How to use multiple libraries with Photos for OS X

If you take lots of photos, or you want to keep specific photos separate, you can set up and use multiple libraries.

Whether you want to break up an incredibly large library into more manageable parts, or you want to keep personal and professional pictures and videos separate, or iPhone vs. DSLR, or you want each family member to have their own library, you can easily set up and use them in Photos for OS X.

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