Mac Pro Tips

Set up your new Mac

Use these basic setup steps to get your new Mac up and running.

 

Check for an Internet connection

It’s best to set up your Mac somewhere that has a Wi-Fi network or other connection to the Internet. Your Mac will use that connection to complete certain setup steps. If the network requires a password, have the password ready.

Plug in only the essential devices

If you’re using an external keyboard and trackpad or mouse, turn them on or plug them into your Mac. If you’re using an external display, plug it in and turn it on as well, but don’t connect any other peripherals yet. And of course plug in your Mac.

If you’ve never used a trackpad before, here’s a tip: To click, press down or tap on the trackpad surface.

Turn on your Mac

Some Mac notebooks automatically start up when you connect the computer to power or open its lid. On other Mac computers, press the power button to start up.

Use the setup assistant

A series of windows will ask you for setup details, such as your Apple ID. If you’ve used iTunes or have an iPhone or iPad, you already have an Apple ID. Use the same Apple ID on your Mac.

We recommend that you let the setup assistant turn on FileVaultiCloud Keychain, and Find My Mac. You can also let it transfer information from another computer or Time Machine backup, or you can do that later using Migration Assistant.

You’ll be asked to create the name and password of your computer account. You’ll need this information to log in to your Mac, change certain settings, and install software.

Check for software updates

When the setup assistant finishes setting up your Mac, you’ll see your Mac desktop, the Finder menu bar, and the Dock.

Click App Store in the Dock, then find and install any software updates. After your software is up to date, you can connect any printers or other peripherals and begin using your Mac.

Using 4K displays, 5K displays, and Ultra HD TVs with your Mac

Learn about Mac support for 4K displays, 5K displays, and Ultra HD TVs. Also learn about the system requirements and how to set up and adjust the display or TV.

Supported displays and configurations

You can use 4K displays and Ultra HD TVs with these Mac computers:

  • MacBook Pro (Retina, Late 2013) and later
  • Mac Pro (Late 2013)
  • iMac (27-inch, Late 2013) and later
  • Mac mini (Late 2014)
  • MacBook Air (Early 2015)
  • MacBook (Retina, 12-inch, Early 2015) and later

HDMI

You can use 4K displays and Ultra HD TVs at the following resolutions and refresh rates via the built-in HDMI port of your Mac:

  • 3840×2160 at 30 Hz refresh rate
  • 4096×2160 at 24 Hz refresh rate (mirroring is not supported at this resolution)

MacBook (Retina, 12-inch, Early 2015) and later, as well as late-2016 MacBook Pro models, support these resolutions and refresh rates over HDMI 1.4b using the USB-C Digital AV Multiport Adapter:

  • 3840×2160 at 30 Hz refresh rate
  • 4096×2160 at 24 Hz refresh rate (mirroring is not supported at this resolution)

MacBook (Retina, 12-inch, Early 2016) and late-2016 MacBook Pro models support 60Hz refresh rates over HDMI when used with a supported HDMI 2.0 display, an HDMI Premium Certified cable, and a supported USB-C to HDMI 2.0 adapter.

Single-Stream (SST) displays

Most single-stream 4K displays are supported at 30Hz operation.

With OS X Yosemite v10.10.3 and later, most single-stream 4K (3840×2160) displays are supported at 60Hz operation on the following Mac computers:

  • MacBook Pro (Retina, 13-inch, Early 2015) and later
  • MacBook Pro (Retina, 15-inch, Mid 2014) and later
  • Mac Pro (Late 2013)
  • iMac (27-inch, Late 2013) and later
  • MacBook Air (Early 2015)

With OS X Yosemite v10.10.3 and later, most single-stream 4K (4096×2160) displays are supported at 60Hz operation on the following Mac computers:

  • MacBook Pro (15-inch, Late 2016)
  • MacBook Pro (13-inch, Late 2016, Four Thunderbolt 3 Ports)
  • MacBook Pro (13-inch, Late 2016, Two Thunderbolt 3 Ports)
  • Mac Pro (Late 2013)
  • iMac (Retina 5K, 27-inch, Late 2014) and later

With macOS Sierra, MacBook (Retina, 12-inch, Early 2015) and later supports 4K (3840×2160) displays at 60Hz operation over DisplayPort.

Multi-Stream Transport (MST) Displays

These Mac computers support multi-stream transport (MST) displays at 60 Hz:

  • MacBook Pro (Retina, 15-inch, Late 2013) and later
  • MacBook Pro (Retina, 13-inch, Early 2015) and later
  • Mac Pro (Late 2013)
  • iMac (Retina 5K, 27-inch, Late 2014) and later

If you use a 60Hz MST display with the MacBook Pro (Retina, 15-inch, Mid 2015) with AMD Radeon R9 M370X graphics card or iMac (Retina 5K, 27-inch, Late 2014), only one additional Thunderbolt display can be supported. Learn more about Thunderbolt ports and displays.

You need to manually configure 4K displays to use MST. Follow the steps below to use the display’s built-in controls to enable this feature.

  • Sharp PN-K321: Choose Menu > Setup > DisplayPort STREAM > MST > SET
  • ASUS PQ321Q: Choose OSD menu > Setup > DisplayPort Stream
  • Dell UP2414Q and UP3214Q: Choose Menu > Display Setting > DisplayPort 1.2 > Enable
  • Panasonic TC-L65WT600: Choose Menu > Display Port Settings > Stream Setting > Auto

If your specific DisplayPort display is not listed above, check with the display’s manufacturer for compatibility information.

Your Mac will automatically detect an MST-enabled display. However, your display might require a firmware update to support 60Hz operation. Contact your display’s manufacturer for details.

Dual-Cable Displays

Some displays with resolutions higher than 4K require two DisplayPort cables to connect the display at full resolution:

  • The Dell UP2715K 27-inch 5K display is supported by iMac (Retina 5K, 27-inch, Late 2014) and later and Mac Pro (Late 2013) running OS X Yosemite v10.10.3 and later.
  • The HP Z27q 5K display is supported by iMac (Retina 5K, 27-inch, Late 2014) and later and Mac Pro (Late 2013) running macOS Sierra.

LG UltraFine Displays

The LG UltraFine 4K Display is supported on these Mac computers with DisplayPort Alt-Mode over USB-C:

  • MacBook Pro (15-inch, Late 2016)
  • MacBook Pro (13-inch, Late 2016, Four Thunderbolt 3 Ports)
  • MacBook Pro (13-inch, Late 2016, Two Thunderbolt 3 Ports)
  • MacBook (Retina, 12-inch, Early 2015) and later

The LG UltraFine 5K Display is supported on these Mac computers with Thunderbolt 3:

  • MacBook Pro (15-inch, Late 2016)
  • MacBook Pro (13-inch, Late 2016, Four Thunderbolt 3 Ports)
  • MacBook Pro (13-inch, Late 2016, Two Thunderbolt 3 Ports)

Adjusting your display

Use System Preferences > Displays to adjust or scale the resolution on your display. This can make text and objects appear larger or give you more space on your screen.

Hover your mouse over one of the resolution options to see more detail on that option. To get a Detect Displays button to appear, press the Option key. To see all the available resolutions, hold down the Option key while clicking the Scaled button.

If you change display resolutions when mirroring to a 4K display or Ultra HD TV, some distortion can occur. Turn mirroring off and back on to correct this.

To get the best graphics performance from your 4K display, connect the display or its adapter directly to your Mac, instead of connecting through another peripheral or device.

Use multiple displays with your Mac Pro (Late 2013)

Learn how to connect multiple displays (such as monitors, TVs, and projectors) to your Mac Pro (Late 2013) using Thunderbolt, Mini DisplayPort, and HDMI connections.

Display configurations you can use with your Mac Pro (Late 2013)

You can connect up to six of the following properly-configured displays to your Mac Pro (Late 2013).

  • Six Apple Thunderbolt Displays (27-inch), Apple LED Cinema Displays (27-inch), or third-party Mini DisplayPort displays.
  • Three 4K displays: two connected via Mini DisplayPort and one connected via HDMI.
  • One 4K Ultra HD TV or 4K display using HDMI and four Apple Thunderbolt Displays (27-inch), Apple LED Cinema Displays (27-inch), or third-party Mini DisplayPort displays.
  • Two HDMI (HD or 4K) devices: one connected via HDMI and one connected via Mini DisplayPort with an HDMI adapter.
  • Six DVI displays. This configuration requires an active DVI adapter.

See Using 4K displays and Ultra HD TVs with Mac computers for a list of 4k displays that work with your Mac Pro.

When connecting your displays, make sure you’re using a supported configuration by connecting them to the HDMI and Thunderbolt ports on your Mac Pro. Attach displays to different Thunderbolt busses when possible (see the figure below). Don’t attach more than two displays to any bus. This means that if you use the HDMI port, be sure to then only use one of the bottom two Thunderbolt ports (Bus 0).

 

When you start up your Mac Pro, one connected display initially illuminates. Any additional connected displays display an image after your Mac is finished starting up. If one or more displays don’t display an image after startup is complete, make sure your displays and any display adapters are connected properly.

If you’re using Windows on your Mac with Boot Camp, it has different specifications for connecting multiple displays.

Use more than one 4K Ultra HD TV

You can connect a 4K Ultra HD TV to the HDMI port, and a 4K Ultra HD TV to a Thunderbolt port. Use an HDMI adapter that conforms to the High Speed HDMI cable standard. Check with the manufacturer of the cable to determine if it supports this standard. Don’t use Thunderbolt Bus 0 to connect this additional device if you’ve already connected a 4K Ultra HD TV to the HDMI port.

Use display rotation and scaling with a 4K Ultra HD TV or 4K display

Scaling and display rotation are supported for 4K Ultra HD TVs or 4K displays connected to your Mac Pro using the HDMI port. Some 4k displays might not work with display rotation when the display is set to multi-stream (MST) mode. If this happens, use the display in single-stream (SST) mode instead.

Connect a DVI display

Your Mac Pro (Late 2013) supports DVI displays using Mini DisplayPort to DVI adapters. Use a single-link DVI adapter such as the Apple Mini DisplayPort to DVI adapter for DVI displays with a resolution up to 1920×1200. Use a Dual-Link DVI adapter such as the Apple Mini DisplayPort to Dual-Link DVI adapter for resolutions up to 2560×1600.

Your Mac Pro (Late 2013) supports a total of two single-link DVI displays. If you connect a third DVI display using a passive adapter or a display using HDMI, it causes one of the three displays to become inactive.

Connect more than two DVI or HDMI displays

Mac Pro supports a total of two DVI or HDMI displays when connected via the built-in HDMI port or using the Apple Mini DisplayPort to DVI adapter. To connect additional DVI displays, use an active DVI adapter like the Apple Mini DisplayPort to Dual-Link DVI adapter. You can connect up to six active adapter DVI displays. This requires a powered USB hub since Mac Pro offers four USB ports and you need six USB ports to connect the Dual-Link DVI adapters.

Learn more

Get help with video issues on external displays connected to your Mac

Try these steps if the image on an external display connected to your Mac is blank or doesn’t look the way you expect.

Before you begin

You can resolve many display issues by updating the software on your Apple devices, cables, and adapters. If you can see an image on your screen, check for software updates using the Mac App Store:

  1. Connect your external display and any Apple video cables or adapters that you use with it.
  2. From the Apple menu, choose App Store.
  3. Click the Updates button in the App Store window.
  4. Install any macOS or firmware updates that are listed.

If you’re using a display, hub, extender, or adapter not made by Apple, check with the manufacturer for any updates that might be available.

If you’re trying to connect a 4K display or Ultra HD TV with your Mac, make sure your computer meets the requirements for using these external displays.

If your software and firmware are up to date, or if you can’t see the image on your screen, try the steps below for your specific issue.

Touch Bar Tips

The Touch Bar on MacBook Pro (15-inch, Late 2016) and MacBook Pro (13-inch, Late 2016, Four Thunderbolt 3 Ports) replaces the function keys at the top of your keyboard and gives you quick access to commands on your Mac. It changes automatically based on what you’re doing and apps that you’re using.

If you need access to function keys (F1–F12), hold down the Function (fn) key at the bottom-left of your keyboard. Touch Bar changes to show the function keys for you to select, and then it returns to its previous state when you release the Function key.

For some apps, you can make the function keys display permanently in Touch Bar:

  1. In System Preferences, choose Keyboard.
  2. Click Shortcuts.
  3. From the left sidebar, select Function Keys.
  4. Click the “+” symbol, then navigate to the app and select it.

Now when you open or switch to this app, Touch Bar always displays the function keys.

     

You can also use an on-screen keyboard to access function keys:

  1. From System Preferences, select Keyboard.
  2. Check “Show Keyboard, Emoji and symbol viewers in menu bar”.
  3. Choose the viewer icon  in the menu bar, then choose Show Keyboard Viewer.

An on-screen keyboard appears with function keys that you can click.

Find system controls and settings in the Control Strip

When you start up your MacBook Pro, the Control Strip on the right side of the Touch Bar shows a few familiar buttons like volume, mute, and display brightness, as well as Siri. The Escape (Esc) button appears on the left side of the Touch Bar.

System controls: Tap  in the Control Strip and it expands, showing system controls like brightness, Exposé, Launchpad, and media playback:

Make your adjustments, then tap . The Control Strip returns to its smaller version on the right side of the Touch Bar, with Esc showing on the left side. You can always tap  to expand the Control Strip and see all the system controls.

Function buttons: To use the F1–F12 function buttons in the Touch Bar, hold the Function (fn) key at the bottom left of your keyboard. The function keys appear:

Learn more about using function keys on MacBook Pro with Touch Bar.

As you use your Mac, the Touch Bar changes automatically based on what you’re doing to show relevant tools that you already know how to use. Read on for examples of what the Touch Bar can do in your favorite apps, and learn how to customize the Touch Bar to make it your own.

Use Touch Bar controls in apps

Many of the built-in apps on your Mac have Touch Bar controls that make common actions even easier. And your favorite third-party apps can take advantage of Touch Bar as well.

Here’s a look at what Touch Bar can do in some popular Mac apps. Explore your other favorite apps to see what Touch Bar offers.

Finder

Navigate and view: In Finder, tap the arrows in the Touch Bar to move back and forth among items, and tap  to view items in Quick Look.

View and sort: Tap  to see options for viewing and sorting your files and folders.

Share: Tap  to see options for sharing your files.

Tag: Tap  to see tags you can apply to items.

Safari

Visit your favorites: In Safari, tap a favorite website in Touch Bar to open it.

Navigate and search: Click the right or left arrow button to go backward or forward. Tap the search field to begin a search, or tap  to open a new tab.

Mail

Perform common tasks: You can use the Touch Bar in Mail for composing, replying, archiving, marking as junk, and flagging messages.

Use predictive input: In Mail and other apps where you compose text, the Touch Bar predicts as you type. Tap a word or emoji to insert it.

Format your text: As you type a message, select some text and the Touch Bar shows you formatting options like bold, italic, and lists.

Say it with emoji: In apps like Mail and Messages, you can choose emoji instead of words for a fun way to make your point. Tap  to see the emoji you use most, and then tap an emoji to insert it.

Photos

Speed through your library: In Photos, the Touch Bar speeds your search for just the right photo as you slide your finger across the thumbnails. You can tap  to mark a selected photo as a favorite or tap  rotate it.

Edit your photos: After you select a photo, tap  to see editing options (crop, filters, adjust, retouch, and red-eye). You can edit your photo using controls that appear on the Touch Bar.

Maps

Find yourself: In Maps, tap  in the Touch Bar to find your location. Tap the search field to type where you want to go.

See what’s nearby: The Touch Bar shows buttons with categories of nearby locations, like restaurants, hotels, and gas stations.

Get there: When you select a location to visit, you see options for getting directions, calling the business, or viewing its website.

Notes

Take a note: In Notes, tap  in the Touch Bar to create a new note. Tap  to add a checklist item.

Format your text: Tap  to show buttons for aligning text and applying bold, italic, or underscore styles.

Apply styles: Tap  to apply paragraph styles like numbered lists, bulleted lists, or headings.

Calendar

See your day: In Calendar, tap the Today button to see today’s events, or slide across the Touch Bar to select the month—past or future.

Edit your events: Select an event in your calendar, then tap to get the event details, edit the time or place, and add or delete invitees.

FaceTime

Control your calls: In FaceTime, you can make and answer calls, get caller info, and send a message or email when you can’t talk—all from the Touch Bar.

Customize your Touch Bar

In many apps, like Finder, Mail, and Safari, you can customize the Touch Bar.

Choose View > Customize Touch Bar. The customization window appears on your display, allowing you to choose your favorite items:

When you’re customizing the Touch Bar, its buttons jiggle, and you see the Done button on the left side.

Use your cursor to drag items that you want down into the Touch Bar. You can also drag items left and right within the Touch Bar to rearrange them, or drag them up and out of the Touch Bar to remove them.

Tap Done in the Touch Bar or click Done on the screen when you finish.

To customize the Control Strip, select View > Customize Touch Bar in any app that supports customization, then touch the Control Strip region of the Touch Bar to switch to Control Strip customization. You can also customize the Control Strip in the Keyboard section of System Preferences.

Explore and experiment

Most apps include shortcuts, tools, and controls in the Touch Bar for the tasks that you want to do. Tap around to see what you can accomplish quickly and easily.

It’s often easier to tap the Touch Bar than to click or select items onscreen. For example, open Calculator and do quick calculations with the number keys and the functions on the Touch Bar—without moving your cursor, clicking, and typing.

Keep using the Touch Bar to find the best ways to do what you want, and explore your favorite third-party apps as they add a new dimension with Touch Bar features.

Use accessibility options with Touch Bar

The accessibility features that help you use your Mac can also help you use the Touch Bar. Hold the Command key while you press Touch ID (power button) three times to toggle VoiceOver, which reads aloud Touch Bar commands.

Use VoiceOver with Touch Bar

VoiceOver tells you what’s on your screen, and walks you through actions like selecting a menu option or activating a button using your keyboard or trackpad. It can also tell you what’s on your Touch Bar.

To turn VoiceOver on or off, hold the Command key and triple-press the Touch ID button, which is on the right side of Touch Bar at the top of your keyboard:

 

After you turn on VoiceOver, you can use these gestures with Touch Bar:

  • Move one finger over the Touch Bar to change the Touch Bar focus and have VoiceOver announce the element under your finger.
  • Swipe left or right with one finger to move the Touch Bar focus to the previous or next Touch Bar element.
  • Double-tap anywhere on the Touch Bar to activate the element under the Touch Bar focus.
  • Split-tap (touch an item with one finger, then tap the Touch Bar with another) to activate the element under the first finger you use.
  • Double-tap and hold to enter direct touch mode for the element under the Touch Bar focus. This allows you to adjust sliders.

Use Touch Bar Zoom

If you use the Zoom feature on your Mac, you can also turn on Touch Bar Zoom.

Select Apple menu () > System Preferences. Then click on Accessibility, select Zoom, and turn on Enable Touch Bar Zoom.

Here’s what you can do after you turn on Touch Bar Zoom:

  • Touch and drag with one finger on the Touch Bar to see a zoomed view of the Touch Bar on your display.
  • Change the magnification level by holding down the Command key and use a two-finger pinch gesture.
  • While panning with one finger, quickly tap with a second finger to synthesize a tap where your first finger is. Hold the second finger down and move both fingers together to synthesize a tap down and drag where your first finger is.
  • Hold your finger still in one location to enter direct-touch mode, which allows you to interact directly with the control under your finger.

Use Switch Control with Touch Bar

You can use Switch Control to display Touch Bar on your MacBook Pro screen. This lets you access Touch Bar elements with standard pointer controls.

First, turn on Switch Control:

  1. Choose Apple menu > System Preferences, click Accessibility, then click Switch Control.
  2. Click General, then select Enable Switch Control. The Switch Control Home Panel appears on your desktop.

Next, toggle Touch Bar:

  1. In the Switch Control Home Panel, click System.
  2. Click Toggle Touch Bar to show or hide Touch Bar.

Learn more about using pointer controls.

Use Accessibility Options to turn on other features

macOS features an Accessibility Options window that lets you quickly turn on or off common accessibility features like Zoom, VoiceOver, Sticky Keys, and more. To bring up this window on your MacBook Pro, triple-press the Touch ID button.

Spotlight Tips

Spotlight can find apps, documents, photos, and other files on your Mac, and use Spotlight Suggestions to get news, sports, movies, stocks, weather, and more from the web using sources like Wikipedia, Bing, Maps, and iTunes. Spotlight can even get conversions, calculations, and definitions for you.

Spotlight menu showing search example and a video result you can play

Tip:   You can drag the Spotlight window anywhere on the desktop and make it bigger.

Open Spotlight and search

Open Spotlight: Click the Spotlight icon  in the upper-right corner of the menu bar, or press Command-Space bar.

If it’s your first time using Spotlight, a description is shown in the Spotlight window. Just start typing in the search field where it says Spotlight Search.

Enter a search phrase: Start typing what you want to find—results appear as you type; you don’t need to press Return.

  • You can find files on your Mac by typing what you’re looking for the same way you’d say it. Here are some examples of natural language search phrases:
    • new york photos
    • emails from emily
    • salesreportQ1
    • presentation I worked on yesterday that contains budget
  • You can find things on the web and in the iTunes Store, iBooks Store, or App Store. For example, you can get results for weather, sports, stocks, or transit information. Or search for music, movies, books, apps, nearby stores and landmarks, and more.

Open an app: Type the name of the app, such as Preview, then press Return.

Spotlight learns from your searches, so if you enter “s” and open Safari, the next time you enter “s,” Safari is the top result.

View and use search results

Open an item: Select the item in the results list on the left, then press the Return key. Or double-click the item.

Use a preview: Click items or links in the preview on the right. For example, to hear a song in your iTunes playlist, click the Play button next to the song. Or to purchase tickets for a movie playing near you, click the movie times.

Show the location of a file on your Mac: Select the file in the results list, then hold down the Command key to show the file’s location at the bottom of the preview.

Copy an item: Drag a file from the results list to the desktop or a Finder window.

See files recently used in an app: Enter the app’s name (don’t press the Return key unless you want to open the app). To open a file, double-click it in the preview.

Make a desktop shortcut to an item: Drag the item from the results list to the desktop; just click it on the desktop to open the item in the appropriate app, such as Safari.

See all results from your Mac in the Finder: Scroll to the bottom of the results list, then double-click Show all in Finder. You can narrow the results in Finder.

Get conversions, calculations, and definitions

Convert currencies: Enter an amount to see the equivalent in other common currencies. For example, enter $100, £100, or ¥100. Or enter something like “300 sek in dollars.”

Convert temperatures: Enter a temperature like 98.8F or 32C. Or enter something like “340K in F.”

Convert measurements: Enter a measurement like 25 lb, 54 yards, or 23 stone. Or enter something like “32ft to meters.”

Get a calculation: Enter a mathematical expression, such as 956*23.94.

Get a definition: Enter a word or phrase, then click the result below Definition.

You can set options to exclude specific folders, disks, or types of information (such as email or messages) from Spotlight searches. If you want Spotlight to search content only on your Mac and not include results from the web, you can turn off Spotlight Suggestions and Bing Web Searches. For more information, see Spotlight preferences.

Not all features of Spotlight Suggestions may be available in all languages or regions and some features of Spotlight Suggestions may vary by region.

Spotlight preferences

In Spotlight preferences, choose the categories that appear in Spotlight search results. If you want, you can also keep Spotlight from searching specific folders or disks.

To open Spotlight preferences, choose Apple menu > System Preferences, then click Spotlight.

Search Results pane

Choose which categories appear in Spotlight search results: Select the categories you want to include, deselect those you don’t.

By default, Spotlight results include Spotlight Suggestions, Bing Web Searches, conversions, documents, folders, music, and more.

Allow Spotlight Suggestions in Spotlight and Look Up: Show Spotlight Suggestions in results when you search in Spotlight and look up a word.

If you don’t want your Spotlight and Look Up search queries and Spotlight Suggestions usage data sent to Apple, you can turn off Spotlight Suggestions. Deselect the “Allow Spotlight Suggestions in Spotlight and Look Up” checkbox (which automatically removes Spotlight Suggestions from the list), then deselect the Bing Web Searches checkbox in the list. With the checkboxes turned off, Spotlight searches only the contents of your Mac, and Look Up searches only the dictionary on your Mac.

You can turn off Location Services for Spotlight Suggestions in Security & Privacy preferences. If you turn off Location Services on your Mac, your precise location will not be sent to Apple. For detailed instructions and information, see About Spotlight Suggestions.

Privacy pane

Keep Spotlight from searching locations: Click the Add button , then locate the folder or disk you want to exclude. You can also drag folders or disks into the list.

Remove a folder or disk from the exclusion list: Select the folder or disk, then click the Remove button .

If you add a Time Machine backup disk to the privacy list, you will continue to see messages that Spotlight is indexing your backup disk. This indexing is necessary for Time Machine to function properly and can’t be disabled. Spotlight does exclude from searches any items you store on your backup disk that are not part of a Time Machine backup.

Important:   If you add certain files and folders to the privacy list you may not be notified when updates become available for some apps. If you add your entire internal disk to the privacy list, you won’t be notified about any updates.

Set Spotlight shortcuts

  1. Choose Apple menu > System Preferences, click Keyboard, then click Shortcuts.
  2. Select Spotlight on the left, then change the shortcuts.

    For more information about changing keyboard shortcuts, see Use global keyboard shortcuts.

Spotlight Suggestions

In addition to searching your Mac, Spotlight Suggestions shows suggestions from the Internet, iTunes, App Store, movie showtimes, locations nearby, and more in Spotlight and Look Up. To search, click the Spotlight icon  in the menu bar, then start typing in the field at the top of the Spotlight window, to the right of the Spotlight icon.

When you use Spotlight or Look Up, your search queries, the Spotlight Suggestions you select, and related usage data will be sent to Apple. Search results found on your Mac will not be sent. If you have Location Services on your Mac turned on, when you make a search query to Spotlight or use Look Up the location of your Mac at that time will be sent to Apple. Searches for common words and phrases will be forwarded from Apple to Microsoft’s Bing search engine. These searches are not stored by Microsoft. To provide you with more relevant music and video suggestions, if your Mac can access music or video subscription services, then information such as the names of the subscription services and types of subscriptions may be sent to Apple. Your account name, number and password will not be sent to Apple. Location, search queries, and usage information sent to Apple will only be used by Apple to make Spotlight Suggestions more relevant and to improve other Apple products and services.

If you do not want your Spotlight and Look Up search queries and Spotlight Suggestions usage data sent to Apple, you can turn off Spotlight Suggestions. Simply deselect the checkbox for “Allow Spotlight Suggestions in Spotlight and Look Up” and the checkbox for Bing Web Searches in the Search Results tab in the Spotlight preference pane found within System Preferences on your Mac. If you turn off Spotlight Suggestions and Bing Web Searches, Spotlight will only search the contents of your Mac and Look Up will only search the dictionary on your Mac.

You can turn off Location Services for Spotlight Suggestions in the Security & Privacy pane of System Preferences on your Mac by clicking on the Privacy tab, selecting Location Services, selecting Details next to System Services, then deselecting Safari & Spotlight Suggestions. If you turn off Location Services on your Mac, your precise location will not be sent to Apple. To deliver relevant search suggestions, Apple may use the IP address of your Internet connection to approximate your location by matching it to a geographic region.

By using these features, you agree and consent to Apple’s and its subsidiaries’ and agents’ transmission, collection, maintenance, processing, and use of this information as described above.

Information collected by Apple will be treated in accordance with Apple’s Privacy Policy, which can be found at www.apple.com/privacy.

Note:   Not all features of Spotlight Suggestions may be available in all languages or regions and some features of Spotlight Suggestions may vary by region.

 

Window Basics

Most of the information on your Mac is displayed in windows, including Finder windows and app windows.

When you have multiple windows open, only one is active. When an app window is active, the menu bar contains the app’s name. Some windows that you open within apps, such as the Fonts window, always appear in front of other windows.

Example of a desktop with multiple windows open

Move, resize, and minimize windows

Move a window: Click the window’s title bar, then drag it where you want it.

Manually resize a window: Drag the window’s edges (top, bottom, and sides).

Maximize a window: Hold down the Option key while you click the green maximize button  in the top-left corner of an app window. To return to the previous window size, Option-click the button again.

You can also double-click an app’s title bar to maximize the window (as long as the option to do so is set to “zoom” in Dock preferences).

Minimize a window: Click the yellow minimize button  in the top-left corner of the window, or press Command-M.

You can set an option in Dock preferences to have a window minimize when you double-click its title bar.

Some windows can’t be moved or resized, and may require that you perform an action or answer a question before you can continue with a task.

Quickly switch between apps

If multiple apps are open, it may be difficult to find the one you want. Here are shortcuts you can use to move among apps.

Quickly switch to the previous app: Press Command-Tab.

Scroll through all open apps: Press Command-Tab, continue to hold the Command key, then press the Tab key repeatedly. When you get to the app you want, stop and release the keys.

You can also press Command-Tab, continue to hold down the Command key and use the mouse pointer or arrow keys to scroll.

Resume work without switching apps: Press Esc (Escape) or the period key.

Here are other tasks you can do after pressing Command-Tab and holding down the Command key:

  • Hide a selected app: Press H.

  • Quit a selected app: Press Q.

Close windows

Click the red close button  in the top-left corner of the window, or press Command-W.

When you click the close button in many apps, such as Photos or Notes, you quit the app. Other apps, such as Safari or Mail, remain open when you click the close button (only the window closes). To quit these apps, click the app’s name in the menu bar, then choose Quit [App]. For more information, see Quit apps.

With many apps, such as Calendar and Mail, you can work with the app in full screen—the app expands to fill the entire screen—or you can open a second app and use both apps side by side in Split View. For more information, see Focus on apps in full screen or Split View.

 

App Store Tips

App Store overview

Shopping for apps is easy and fun in the App Store. You can choose from thousands of apps developed just for your Mac—browse, read about apps, buy the ones you want, write reviews, and even keep macOS and your apps up to date. All you need is an Apple ID. If you don’t have an Apple ID, it’s easy to create one.

Explore

Browse for apps in the Featured, Top Charts, or Categories area of the App Store. Or use the search field in the top-right corner to find specific apps. To learn about an app before downloading or buying it, click it to see a description, customer reviews, and ratings. Learn More.

The App Store window showing toolbar buttons for browsing apps

Get apps

When you find the perfect app, sign in with your Apple ID. If you don’t have an account, choose Store > Create Account to create one for yourself—including your Apple ID, nickname for posting reviews, address, and so on. This information lets you purchase apps, install and update your apps on all your computers, and reinstall apps you’ve deleted. Learn more.

The App Store sign-in dialog

Tell your friends

Let others know what you think about an app—you can rate it, write a review, and share your review using email, Twitter, Facebook, and so on. Learn more.

The App Store window for entering an app rating and a review

Always have the latest

When macOS or app updates are available, you receive a notification. A badge showing the number of available updates appears in the App Store toolbar and on the App Store icon in the Dock. To see what’s new, open App Store, then click the Updates button in the toolbar. Learn more.

App Store toolbar showing the Updates button

Sign in to the App Store

Before you can purchase or update an app from the App Store, you must sign in using an Apple ID, or create an Apple ID if you don’t have one.

An Apple ID gives you access to the iTunes Store, App Store, iBooks Store, Apple Online Store, iCloud, FaceTime, and other Apple services. It consists of an email address (for example, emilyparker@icloud.com) and a password. For more information about Apple ID, or to create a new one, go to the Apple ID account website.

Note: All of your purchases are tied to your Apple ID account, and can’t be transferred to another Apple ID account. If you bought apps on your iPad, iPhone, or other Mac, sign in using the same Apple ID to see all of your apps on this Mac. If an update to an app you purchased in the App Store is available, sign in using your Apple ID to download the update.

Sign in with your Apple ID: Choose Store > Sign In, then enter your Apple ID information.

Create an Apple ID: Choose Store > Create Account. You can also choose Store > Sign In, then click Create Apple ID.

View account settings: Sign in, then choose Store > View My Account. Account settings include your Apple ID, billing information, and the nickname you use when you review apps. You can also view purchases that you’vehidden.

Sign out: Choose Store > Sign Out.

Find, buy, and download apps

To find the perfect app, search for it or browse the App Store. Once you find the app you want, you can purchase it using your Apple ID, or you can redeem a download code or a gift card.

Search for an app: Enter one or more words in the search field at the top-right corner of the App Store window, then press Enter.

Ask Siri. Say something like: “Find apps by Apple.”  Learn more about Siri.

Browse the App Store: Browse any of the following areas:

  • Featured: Click Featured to view recommended and featured apps.
  • Top Charts: Click Top Charts to view the bestselling or most downloaded apps in a variety of categories.
  • Categories: Do either of the following:
    • Click Categories, then click a category.
    • Click Featured or Top Charts, then choose a category from the pop-up menu or the list in the Quick Links area on the right.

Learn about an app: In the App Store, click an app’s name or icon to view its description page, where you can read a description of the app, and customer reviews.

Get an app: Click the button that shows the price of the app, then click the button again to install or buy the app (or use Touch ID).

App information bubble showing the app price

During installation, you can pause or cancel.

Redeem download codes or gift cards: Click Redeem in the Quick Links area on the right (if you don’t see it, click Featured, Top Charts, or Categories in the toolbar). Enter the download code or the code from your gift card.

If you have a gift card with a box around the code, you can use the built-in camera on your Mac to redeem the card. After you click Redeem, click Use Camera, then hold the gift card 4 to 7 inches (10 to 18 centimeters) from the camera. Make sure the code area is near the center of the preview area, then hold the card steady until it’s redeemed.

Purchase in-app content and subscriptions: Some apps sell extra content, including app upgrades, game content, and subscriptions. To make an in-app purchase, enter your Apple ID (or use Touch ID). For more information about subscriptions, see Manage app subscriptions.

View and manage purchased apps

You can view the apps you purchased using your Apple ID in the Purchased list on any of your Mac computers. If you don’t want certain apps to appear in that list, you can hide them. You can also uninstall apps that you no longer need.

View purchased apps

  • Sign in to your account in the App Store, then click Purchased.

Hide and show apps

  • Hide a purchased app: Press and hold the Control key, click the app, then choose Hide Purchase.
  • View hidden apps: Click Store > View My Account, then click Manage (to the right of Hidden Items). In the window that appears, click Unhide for apps that you want to appear in the Purchased list. When you’re finished, click Done.

Uninstall apps

Note: You can’t uninstall apps that are part of macOS, such as Safari and Mail.

  • Drag the app from the Applications folder to the Trash (located at the end of the Dock), then choose Finder > Empty Trash.

To learn how to uninstall using an app’s uninstaller, see Install, update, and uninstall apps.

Update macOS and apps

App Store keeps track of updates for macOS and apps you purchased with your Apple ID.

When an update is available, you receive a notification. You also see a badge in the App Store toolbar and on the App Store icon in the Dock that shows the number of updates available.

Badges in the App Store window and on the App Store icon in the Dock show that updates are available

Update an app from the App Store

  • Update from the Updates pane: Click Updates in the toolbar, then do one of the following:
    • Update all apps now: Click Update All.
    • Update all apps later: Click the disclosure triangle next to Update All, then choose an option.If you choose to install updates tonight, they are installed between 2:00 and 5:00 a.m. If you install updates that require you to restart your Mac, a notification appears prior to the update, so you can delay it if necessary.
  • Update from the Featured, Top Charts, or Categories areas: Click Update.
    App information bubble with Update button

Update macOS from the App Store

  • Click the More link under a macOS update to view update information and see whether updates are available for individual components of macOS (for example, Safari, iTunes, and so on).

    Note: Required security updates are installed automatically.

Update from the Apple menu

  1. To see if you have available updates, open the Apple menu.The number of updates appears to the right of App Store.
  2. To get your updates, choose App Store.
  3. After App Store opens, click Updates in the toolbar.For more instructions, see “Update macOS from the App Store” and “Update an app from the App Store,” above.

Update from an Updates Available notification

If you receive a notification that an app update is available, you can download the update without opening App Store.

  • In the notification, do one of the following:
    • Update all apps now and restart: Click Restart.
    • Update all apps later: Click Later, then choose an option.

Have App Store automatically check for updates

  1. Choose App Store > Preferences.
  2. Select “Automatically check for updates,” then select any of the related options.

For more information, see About required security updates.

Automatically keep macOS and apps up to date

You can automatically download and install macOS and app updates.

  1. Choose App Store > Preferences.
  2. Select “Automatically check for updates,” then select “Install app updates” to have your Mac install app updates automatically, or “Install macOS updates” to have your Mac install macOS updates automatically.

Install and reinstall purchased apps

There are several ways to install and reinstall apps you purchased with your Apple ID or that came with your new Mac.

Note: In the App Store, all purchased apps are listed under Purchased.

Install apps that you purchased on a different computer

You can install apps that you purchased with your Apple ID on other Mac computers.

Note: All of your purchases are tied to your Apple ID account, and can’t be transferred to another Apple ID account. If you bought apps on your iPad, iPhone, or other Mac, sign in using the same Apple ID to see all of your apps on this Mac.

  • Sign in to your account in the App Store, click Purchased, then click Install.

Automatically download apps that you purchased on a different computer

  • Sign in to your account in the App Store with your Apple ID. Choose App Store > Preferences, then select “Automatically download apps purchased on other Macs.”

Reinstall apps

If you uninstalled or deleted an app that you purchased in the App Store, you can install it again.

Note: All of your purchases are tied to your Apple ID account, and can’t be transferred to another Apple ID account. If you bought apps on your iPad, iPhone, or other Mac, sign in using the same Apple ID to see all of your apps on this Mac.

  • Sign in to your account in the App Store, then click Purchased. Locate the app you want, then click Install.

Add preinstalled apps to your account

If your Mac came with preinstalled apps, such as GarageBand, iMovie, and Photos, you can add them to your account.

Do one of the following:

  • Update from the Purchased area: Click Purchased, click Accept, then sign in using the Apple ID for the account you want to add the apps to.
  • Update from the Featured, Top Charts, or Categories area: Locate the app in the Featured, Top Charts, or Categories area, then click Accept.

After preinstalled apps are added to your account, they’re listed with the rest of your purchased apps. If you delete the apps later, you can reinstall them using the instructions above.

Manage app subscriptions

You can change renewal settings for app subscriptions you purchased in the App Store.

  1. Choose Store > View My Account, sign in, then click Manage (next to Subscriptions).
  2. If an app is set to renew automatically, do any of the following:
    • Change your renewal duration: Select a setting in the Renewal Options list.
    • Turn off automatic renewal: Click Cancel Subscription.

You can also download an app from the Internet or install an app from a disc. See Install, update, and uninstall apps for instructions.

Tell people about apps

In App Store, you can rate, review, and tell your friends about apps.

Rate an app you purchased or downloaded: On the app’s description page, click a star next to “Rate this application.”

Write a review of an app you purchased or downloaded: On the app’s description page, click the link below Customer Reviews to write a review. Enter review information, then click Submit.

Tell your friends about an app: Click the info bubble pop-up menu, then choose an option.

App information button showing the pop-up menu for choosing an option for sharing info about an app
  • Copy Link: Create a copy of the link to the app description page. You can paste the link into an email message or a document.
  • Tell a Friend: Send an email about the app.
  • Share on Twitter: Tweet about the app.
  • Share to Facebook: Create a Facebook post about the app.

About required security updates

Your Mac checks daily for required security updates and notifies you when one is available in App Store. If the update does not require you to restart your Mac, it’s installed automatically after a specified amount of time. Otherwise, the update is installed the next time you restart your Mac.

If you prefer, you can always manually install required security updates.

  • Choose App Store > Preferences, then deselect “Install system data files and security updates.”

App Store keyboard shortcuts

App Store includes keyboard shortcuts for common macOS commands and for navigation.

Navigation shortcuts are shown below; look in the menus to find shortcuts for common commands.

Action

Shortcut

Display Featured apps Command-1
Display Top Charts Command-2
Display Categories Command-3
Display Purchased Apps Command-4
Display Updates Command-5
Search for an app Command-F
Refresh the current page Command-R
Go to the previous page Command—Left bracket ( [ )

On a trackpad, swipe two fingers to the left.

If you have a Magic Mouse, swipe one finger to the left.

Go to the next page Command—Right bracket ( ] )

On a trackpad, swipe two fingers to the right.

If you have a Magic Mouse, swipe one finger to the right.

Siri Tips

Like Siri on your iOS devices, Siri on your Mac is your intelligent personal assistant that helps you multitask and get things done just by asking. For example, while you work on a document, you can ask Siri to send a message to your coworker saying that the document is on the way—without having to stop what you’re doing.

Here are just a few examples of the many things that you can ask Siri to do:

  • “Show the PDFs in my Downloads folder”
  • “How much free space do I have on my Mac?”
  • “Play the top 40 jazz songs”
  • “What’s the weather in Lake Tahoe?”
  • “Show me all of the files I shared with Cecilia last week”
  • “Search the web for images of the Eiffel Tower”
  • “Find tweets from José Bautista”
  • “FaceTime Victoria”
  • “Add Laura to my 10 AM meeting”
  • “How do you spell broccoli?”
  • “Show my photos from yesterday”
  • “What time is it in Monterrey, Mexico?”

Ask Siri a question

Click the Siri icon  in the menu bar or Dock. Siri asks “What can I help you with?” Then say what you need. 
To learn about Siri’s capabilities on the Mac, just ask Siri “What can you do?”

Click the Siri icon  again or clickmicrophone iconin the search result to ask another question. Siri remains open on your desktop in front of any other apps, or you can close the window with a swipe.

To ask Siri a question, you can instead hold down both the Command (⌘) key and Space bar until Siri asks, “What can I help you with?”

 If you’re using a Mac mini or a Mac Pro, connect a microphone for Siri to hear your requests. Choose Apple menu () > System Preferences and click Sound.
Then select your microphone in the Input tab.

 

Ask Siri to find files on your Mac

Siri makes it easy to find files on your Mac, using various criteria. For example, you can ask Siri to search for all the documents that you opened this week. Then you can ask Siri to refine your results to just the ones with the word “annual” in the title.

 

Keep Siri results where you can find them

You can keep important information from Siri—like sports schedules, Twitter feeds, files that are related to your big project, and much more—right in Notification Center so you can access it easily. Just click plus sign at the top of your Siri results. They’ll even stay up to date, so you always know where to find game times, trending topics, or important documents.

Search and drag Siri results

You can ask Siri to search for information, and then drag the results into a window or application on your desktop. For example, you can ask Siri to find an image on the web, and then you can drag it into your Pages document. Or you can ask Siri to find a restaurant, then drag the location from Maps into an invitation.

Edit your Siri request

To edit your request instead of making a new request, double-click your words in the Siri window, then enter your changes from the keyboard.


Double-click your words to edit them.


Then press Return to search again.

Change Siri settings

Go to System Preferences and click Siri. Or you can just ask Siri to open Siri Preferences.

In Siri Preferences, you can:

  • Turn Siri on or off
  • Change the language or dialect that Siri expects you to use
  • Change the gender and dialect of the voice that Siri uses when speaking to you
  • Turn off voice feedback so that Siri shows results silently

Get help

 

Disable System Integrity Protection (SIP)

MacOS Sierra has a stricter Gatekeeper with not allowing Apps from unidentified developers and as a result will annoy us with saying that application is damaged and cannot be opened.

How to Disable System Integrity Protection (SIP) for MacOS Sierra?

With the following 2 options:

Option 1

For a certain application run in Terminal:

sudo xattr -rd com.apple.quarantine /Applications/LockedApp.app

Option 2

To disable checks globally (example: allow apps from anywhere) run in Terminal:

sudo spctl --master-disable

 

Downgrade macOS Sierra to El Capitan

hero-macos_large

There are three key aspects when you are considering a downgrade from macOS Sierra to El Capitan. These are as follows:

  1. First You will have to Erase the macOS Sierra from your Mac
  2. Next you will have to Re-install El Capitan
  3. Check that your System is stable

Usually this process is pretty easy and safe if you had chosen a second partition for using the beta install. It is always a good idea to do so if you are trying to install a beta edition of the OS X.

Lets proceed with the detailed steps for each of the above milestones. Please make sure that your machine is  connected to a wi-fi with internet access before your proceed.

Erasing the existing macOS Sierra

  • Restart your Mac from the  menu
  • Hold Down Command +R keys together upon hearing the chime and hold the keys till you see the Apple logo appear on the screen. This launches your Mac into the recovery mode
  • Select Disk Utility from your OS X utilities
  • Select the indented volume name of your startup disk from the left side of the Disk Utility window, then click the Erase tab.
  • Type in Macintosh HD for the name as Mac OS Extended from the format list and then choose Erase
  • Close the Disk Utility window

Reinstall El Capitan

Now that the macOS Sierra has been erased from your drive, you will need to re-install the OS X El Capitan.

  • Re-install OS X from OS X utilities and choose the OS X El Capitan Installer.once the process is complete, restart the Mac.
  • Invoke Recovery mode while the Mac is starting up by pressing together the Command + R keys.
  • Open your OS X Utilities. From your OS X Utilities menu, click Restore from Time Machine Backup. We are assuming that you had made a complete backup before installing the macOS beta on your machine.
  • Select your Time Machine backup disk
  • Select the backup you want to restore from
  • Click Continue and follow the instructions to reinstall OS X and your backed up files.

Check Your System

  • At this point, you have erased macOS Sierra and re-installed El Capitan. Restart your Mac and you should be all set to go.
  • In the case, you run into issues in starting your Mac or Macbook after the El Capitan re-install, you may have to check some of your kext settings if you hadn’t already taken care of it prior to the beta install.

 

 

Top Apps

AppFresh

Software updater is great for Apple applications, but appfresh has the ability to check thrid party apps for updates. A great little tool for keeping upto date.


AppZapper

Although applications are easy to uninstall on a mac there are usually small preference files hanging about. Appzapper cleans up an uninstall all of those files.


Disk Inventory X

A simple program that scans your disk and visually shows what files takes up how much space, good to visualize if you are running out of space and you have some size hogs.


Grand Perspective

Very similar to Disk Inventory X, shows you what files take up how much space on your website.


OpenPlist

A very cool little tool if you need to end up editing Plist files.

Quicksilver

One of the best applications ever made for the mac. Its a quick launch tool that enables you to open and do practically anything. Very fun and really increases your productivity.

Stuffit

An application design to unstuff or unpack nearly any file. Create if you use archives a lot.


TextWrangler

A very cool text editor that lets you edit text files quickly. Sometimes more powerful than text edit.


TidyUp

An application that enables you to search through a list of files finds duplicates. Great if you have many files and you need to organise them.


Todos

Leaves no application behind. A very visual way to view all of the applications on your computer. Kind of surpassed by the stacks in the dock.

UnRarX

UnrarX gives you the abilty to easily uncompress .rar files. Very good, although stuffit can now handle .rar files.


Xslimmer

Give your mac a diet. It goes through and removes the powerpc or intel parts of your program. It can really reduce the size of applications. Can also break them if you are not careful.