os x

How to show the largest files under a directory on Mac OS X (Unix)

Here’s an example that shows how to find the largest files under a directory on MacOS and Linux/Unix systems.

A du/sort command to show the largest files under a directory on Mac OS X

The Unix/Linux command that worked for me on my MacOS system is this:

$ du -a * | sort -r -n | head -10

du is the disk usage command, and the -a flag says, “Display an entry for each file in a file hierarchy.” Then I use the sort command to sort the du output numerically and in reverse. After that, head -10 shows only the first ten lines of output. In the Music folder on my Mac the command and output look like this:

How to copy text from the MacOS Terminal to the clipboard alvin April 10, 2017 - 5:48pm

If you ever need to copy text (or a text file) from the MacOS Terminal to the Mac clipboard, I can confirm that the macOS pbcopy command works. It reads from STDIN and copies the text to the clipboard, so commands like these work:

$ echo "foo bar baz" | pbcopy

$ cat /etc/passwd | pbcopy

How to replace newline character with sed on Mac OS X (macOS)

I don’t have much time to explain this today, but ... if you want to see how to use the sed command on a Mac OS X (macOS) system to search for newline characters in the input pattern and replace them with something else in the replacement pattern, this example might point you in the right direction.

Apple has an iOS/macOS “Stagefright” security flaw

According to Forbes and other sources, Apple now has its own version of a “Stagefright” security flaw, and it affects all but the most recent versions of iOS and Mac OS X. Theoretically all it requires is that a hacker sends your phone one text.

Apple’s minimalist security announcements are here: iOS 9.3.3 update, OS X update.

Using sed to add a newline on Mac OS X

As a quick note today, I have been converting parts of the Scala Cookbook from a plain text format to a Markdown format, and as part of that I needed to add some newline characters to add spacing to the document. This wouldn’t be bad if it was a few pages, but it’s hundreds of pages, so I decided to use the Unix sed command to do the work.

How to kill/disable the Dashboard in Mac OS X 10.9

OS X 10.9 is sucking the life out of my old Mac, a 2008 iMac. Like turning off everything on Star Trek’s Enterprise so you can give power to something else (like the engines or shields), I keep looking for ways to bring a little life back to it. One way I’ve read about is to kill the Dashboard on 10.9.

You can kill the Dashboard with this Mac OSX defaults command, issued in a Mac Terminal window:

The Mac OS X (macOS) “won’t shutdown” (slow shutdown) problem

Since upgrading to Mac OS X 10.9 I’ve experienced the problem other people have reported, where their Mac won’t shutdown, or shuts down very slowly. We had a huge lightning storm roll in a few days ago, and when my 2008 iMac didn’t shut down after three minutes of waiting, I finally had to press and hold the button on the back to force it to shut down.

Since then I’m glad to say that the following series of defaults write commands has helped my iMac to shut down much more quickly: