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5 Secret Hidden Features of Your Mac


Do you think you know your Mac well? Hm, think again. Even experienced users are unaware of many secret functions buried in the margins of Mac OS X. In this article, you're sure to find some valuable and helpful info about amazing hidden features that you never suspected existed. Ready to look at your Mac from a different perspective?

When driving into a corner doesn't mean a dead end

The Hot Corners feature is relatively well known but still little used. The core idea behind Hot Corners is triggering specified events when you move the pointer to the corner of the screen. Here's the list of what you can assign to any corner:

  • Mission Control;
  • Desktop;
  • Application windows;
  • Notification Center;
  • Start and disable screen saver;
  • Launchpad;
  • Dashboard;
  • Put display to sleep.

Thanks to the well thought-out functionality, Hot Corners can really save your time and nerve. There is a catch, though: it can be very annoying when, for example, all your windows collapse because the mouse accidentally hit one of the active Hot Corners. The solution to this drawback is to assign a key that should be held down to trigger an action. After the proper fine-tuning is done and you start using this feature, chances are high you'll regret that the screen has only four corners.

How to activate: Go to System Preferences --> Desktop & Screen Saver --> Screen Saver tab --> Hot Corners.

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Big button – big feature

Another Mac feature that might have slipped under many users' radars is previewing almost any file by selecting it and pressing the spacebar. What's even more convenient, while in the 'sneak peek mode,' you can use the arrow keys to go over to other files and quickly get the idea about their content. We bet, after you try this preview trick, selecting couple photos from the vacation to post on Facebook will never be the same.

"Nah, haven't seen it. Cross my heart!"

Admit it, we all have been there: sometimes when communicating in Messages, you just need a person on the other end to not know that you've read his or her message. For whatever reason. That's when you will thank us that we've told you how to cancel read receipts. You can do it for all conversations at once or on a per-conversation basis.

How to cancel all read receipts: In the Messages app, go to Preferences --> Accounts --> Settings --> Uncheck the box for Send read receipts.

How to cancel read receipts on the specific conversation: When chatting via Messages, click on Details link (it is located in at the top right of the window). Below the information about your chat partner, there is a check box for Send Read Receipts. Uncheck it – and you're done.

Become the Printer Master

This tip will be especially helpful for those Mac users who work in big offices and have many colleagues. Under such circumstances, it often happens that you have to wait in the queue while some Junior staff is printing out the next chapter of "7 Habits of Highly Effective People". Here's how you can beat them all with this Mac hidden feature:

Go to System Preferences --> Printers & Scanners. Select all printers you have access to and create a pool out of them.

The next time it comes to printing, just choose this pool – and voila, your document will be automatically sent to the first available printing machine.

Like tabbing? This one's for you

Online forms are everywhere these days. Auto filling helps in some cases; for the rest, there is tabbing through the input boxes. Unfortunately, tabbing skips multiple dropdown menus like date (gosh, sometimes there are separate month, day, and year fields!) or state choosers. Yeah, it might be a tiny thing for many average users, but it's a huge pain in the back for those who don't like to take hands away from the keyboard. Luckily, you can fix this issue in just couple steps.

How to activate: Go to System Preferences --> Keyboard, and then set "Full Keyboard Access" to "All Controls."

So, here you have them – the best Mac secret features. Hope, you'll have an opportunity to parade your new knowledge before your friends and colleagues and streamline your work along the way.

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