Knowledge of the operating system and basic user guide for beginners - Linux, Mac and other operating systems - HWzone Forums
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Learn about the operating system and a basic user guide for beginners

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As with any transition to a different interface, you have to get used to a different form of work and learn the options that are open to you.

In general, the osx interface is similar in many respects to the user interface you are used to from windows / gnome / kde so that basic use will feel natural to you, but it is important to know the differences in favor of a smoother and more relaxed use when needed.

Keyboard keys:

The 3 keyboard has different main buttons from the input in the Linux / Linux systems,

The command button (replaced by the PC keyboards), the option button (replaced with alt) and the fn, which is probably known to computer owners .

The command button is similar in its basic functions to the ctrl button in (For example, to copy a file / text to a clipboard, use command + c and command + v to paste).

The fn button, similar to the nidi Will provide additional use for existing buttons (eg fn key combination with the delete key will change the direction of text deletion)

The option button is used mainly for key combinations (for example, option + command + esc pops the force quit window similar to the first tab in the windows task manager).

(Such as ctrl and command for "more natural" work for Windows users) can do so from the system preferences menu

keyboard-> modifier keys (but for those who want to switch to Mac "for good", will prefer to get used to the original location of the Mac keys).


In the upper right corner you will find a magnifying glass icon that opens a search box. This search engine is called spotlight.

The spotlight stores an index of the installed applications, operating system settings, files and folders, emails, help pages, and so on.

In addition, you will find several additional features embedded in the search box, such as dictionary and calculator.

Popup of the spotlight window will usually be done by combining command + space, but this combination will be replaced by changing the typing language as soon as you set another writing language. You can reset the spotlight in the system preferences menu.


View and manage files:

As in other operating systems, here too you can set the folder contents to be displayed in a variety of shapes (this will be done from the view menu on the top bar).

Icons - Large icons display, with preview of multimedia files (movies Will receive a play button to run directly from the thumbnail) but you can not see a "folder tree" in this mode.

list - A standard "Folder Tree" view, with columns of information about each file.

columns - In this mode you will receive a column for each folder hierarchy, convenient for transferring files from a folder to a folder without opening a number in parallel.

Coverflow - similar to the existing feature on itunes / ipods, will show you in addition to the list view, thumbnail view of the multimedia files in the folder.

The first thing you will probably notice in everyday use is the inability to "cut" files and folders. The option can be returned with third party software, but for my personal taste once you get used to managing files by dragging, you will not feel missed.

Display modes and columns, or work with a number At the same time, you will be able to perform convenient file management. While dragging, you can see near the mouse cursor whether dragging will copy or move the file. To change this, use the command and option buttons while dragging.

Changing the folder name (f2 in windows systems) has been replaced by a surprising ".... enter", when the file is opened by double-click or command + o on the keyboard,

And the space key will provide you with more information about the file + previews for multimedia files (in all display modes).


Columns view

Windows Management:

The top bar (file / edit / view, etc.) remains permanently open throughout the operating system, and changes its options according to the active window. You can identify this by the first menu on the left that will always be the name of the software.

At the far left is the Apple icon, which is used as the main menu of the operating system, through which you can access system info / system preferences and more.

You can see that the lower icon bar (this is the dock) is separated into 2 by a kind of white crossover. On the left side are embedded icons and background programs (a small lightbulb at the bottom of the icon will be added to the currently running programs.

The right part of the ruler will display Thumbnails, and folders are stuck (documents, downloads, and apps are pinned by default and you can drag any folder to drag it to that area).

Minimizing and closing the windows will do the same as in Windows (X and Minus at the top of the window)

However, window stretching on the whole screen works differently, and the operating system will try (and in most cases you can) adjust the size of the window to the maximum size the program / folder requires at the moment. The goal is to provide everything that a "full screen" will display, Screen and allow convenient multitasking (and our son, in an age when all screens are wide screens, which windows / sites really use the entire width?).

For those who would like to stretch On the entire screen, similar to the Windows option, you can use third-party software (like the free BetterTouchTool).

Attaching the windows to the right or left arrows as added to the 7 window also does not exist in the Mac, but this is also possible with BetterTouchTool.


gestures, expose, spaces, and dashboard

Those with a touch-pad (On mobile devices or as a stationary additive) will be able to enjoy the great advantage of the gestures in the operating system (activating features by marking on the surface).

The basic options that are important to learn to use on a daily basis are:

2 Fingers up and down will roll the window like a PC mouse pulley

3 Fingers will take you back and forward (eg in a browser).

4 Fingers up (as well as the f11 key) will hide all active windows and display the desktop (desktop).

4 Downwards fingers (as well as the f9 key) will display the "expect" mode (split screen of all open and minimized windows).

4 sideways will move you between applications running in the background (similar to Alt + tab in Windows, here you can do this by command + tab on the keyboard).

pinch with 2 fingers, Will increase and decrease the content displayed in the browser / image viewer, etc.


The "pose "is a feature designed to help you control all the programs and folders that are open to a limited work space.

As already noted, the previous options will show you a "split screen", f2 will display the desktop, and another display mode that can help you is to display all the windows of the software you are currently using, f9.

In the "settings" menu (under system preferences) you will find a variety of options that will make it easier for you.

For example, activating the screen saver by pressing the cursor to one of the corners of the screen, displaying all the windows (as shown by f9) by pressing the scroll button for the owners of Mighty Mouse, etc.


Will allow you to create a number of virtual screens, so you can manage a wide number of applications / folders by assigning / moving each to a different workspace, and a quick transition between them.


A concentrated view of widgets, in this way you can fill an entire screen with widgets without affecting the desk space.


Settings window

Installing and removing software:

Here the situation is much simpler than anything else Otherwise I knew,

Basically, most applications written to Mac will arrive as a single file in the .app extension, you will need to drag these apps to the application folder. To remove them, drag them to the trash.

Software that integrates into the operating system or other software will come in a pkg file with a setup wizard similar to the next-finish standard.

Note that some of the installation files will come in a "dmg" file. This is a sort of virtual disk that you mount in the file run, go to the setup / training files that you can, and perform an unmount from the desktop.

In the 10.6.6 version of the operating system, the app store was added to the Mac users, where you can find programs you know, search for programs by category, and update all existing applications downloaded with the click of a button.

* Please note that some of the programs keep system files remaining after removing the software manually (drag to trash), to remove them cleanly, we recommend using the free appCleaner that finds these files and removes them together with the software.

The total basic usage is slightly different but still maintains the most logical and simple understanding.

If you're looking for a more advanced option, try searching through the spotlight, the help pages are short and mostly (mostly).

For any question / recommendation you are welcome to open a discussion here in the forum.

If you find a stiki error, you are welcome to send me a personal message.

Special thanks to Radioactive who helped write and edit the article.

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