Category Archives: Tips

Five Tip Friday ~ If you’ve made the jump to iOS 11, here are some tips for you


1/  A Safari finger gesture opens links in the background Immediately — In iOS 11 there is a way to open links immediately in the background while browsing Safari. You’ll need to go into Settings>Safari and turn on Open Links, and choose to open links in the background.
Now you can long-press the link, or 3D Touch the link. This lets you open web pages without navigating away from the current page. (This feature may have been around at least since iOS 10, and it works on iPhone and iPad).
(If you don’t have 3D Touch, try tapping the link with two fingers.)

2/ Using AirDrop in iOS 11 — The first, and arguably easiest, way to toggle AirDrop in iOS 11 is through the Control Center. Open the Control Center by swiping up from the bottom of the screen. The platter in the top left corner will show you Airplane mode, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and Cellular Data, if you have it on your iOS device.
If you long-press or 3D Touch deep press on that platter, it will open up a couple more options (left) for you. One of those is AirDrop, which you can just tap on.
Then, choose whether you want the feature off, available to everyone, or available to just your contacts.
If you prefer, you can also find the toggle for AirDrop in the Settings app. Open Settings -> General -> AirDrop.
Then you can find the same configurations for AirDrop as in Control Center: Everyone, Contacts Only, or Off.

3/ Focus Lock the iPhone’s default camera — The iPhone’s default camera app is good, but sometimes there are one or two features you’re looking for that it doesn’t have, such as locking the focus or shooting in RAW. But it turns out that you can focus lock the camera, it’s just hidden away behind a gesture. Focus lock means that the camera will stay focused on a certain object even when you move around. Here’s how to do it.
Locking the focus isn’t new in iOS 11, but since the user interface is different it’s time for a refresher. You may already know that when you’re taking a photo with the default camera app, you can tap on the screen to focus on something specific in your frame. Now, to focus lock, you have to press and hold anywhere you want to focus on for a second.
The yellow reticle will flash a couple of times, and it will lock onto the object until you close the app or tap on another part of the screen.
After you lock the focus you can tap on the sun icon and swipe up or down to control the exposure. Swiping down will darken the image and lower the intensity of highlights so you get more detail.

4/ Turn Photos into custom Apple Watch faces — You’ll need at least one photo, but you can use up to ten for your custom watch face. Open the Photos app on your iPhone to get started. Now do this:
Select a photo you want to use as your custom watch face. You can pick up to 10.
Tap the Share icon in the bottom left corner of the screen
Choose Create Watch Face from the Share locations
Tap the Share icon (left) then the watch face icon (right) to turn your photo into a custom watch face
If you chose a single photo now you can set it as a Photos or Kaleidoscope watch face
Fine tune your custom watch face settings
Next, you can set where the time shows and if any complications are visible
Tap Add
Now head over to the Watch app to select your custom watch face
Now head over to the Watch app and select your new custom watch face. If you included multiple photos in your custom face they’ll change when you lift your watch.

5/ Customize taps for each of your AirPods — Take your AirPods out of their case (or just open it), launch your Settings app on your iPhone or iPad, and then touch Bluetooth.
Under that section, you should see your AirPods by name. Touch the “i” next to them first.
On the subsequent screen, there’s a “Double-Tap on AirPod” section, now separated into left and right.
So just touch the side you want to configure, and you’ll see your choices.
Tap the behaviour you want, go back to set up the opposite AirPod, and then you’ll see what you’ve chosen out on the previous Settings > Bluetooth > AirPods screen.

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Five Tip Friday ~ Some tips for iOS 10: PDFs to iCloud; Notes and Calendar


iOS 11 is imminent – most of these will work for that too, though, so here’s to 10.

1/ Save a PDF to iCloud — If you can print a particular item in iOS 10, you can save it as a PDF. You can also share a newly created PDF through a message or an email.
First open any app you can print from. In this case, I’m using Safari, so I’ll start the printing process by tapping the Sharesheet icon (an upwards arrow in a rectangle – it’s circled in the image at left). Once the options screen opens, swipe to find Print along the bottom row of icons and once you tap that, you will see a preview of how my webpage would look if you printed it.
But here’s the hidden feature: place two fingers on the screen and pinch outwards to open on the little preview image and you will be taken to the PDF version of the item. Yet another Sharesheet allows you to save the PDF to iCloud Drive with an icon on the bottom row of the subsequent screen
You can also do the typical sharing stuff with your PDF: add it to a message or an email, or other options.
[From Melissa Holt at  Mac Observer.]

2/ In Notes on iPhone/iPad, use an On My [Device] account — If you’re really concerned about the security of data you type into your notes, you should probably lock the important ones. Also, though, you can choose to store certain notes only on one device or another as opposed to syncing them all through iCloud. You could keep a list on your iPhone but not pull it onto the family iPad that’s signed into your iCloud account, for example.
Visit Settings on the device you’d like to store local notes on, and then go to the Notes section. At the bottom is a toggle for adding an On My [Device] account. Turn that on, and you can choose where to add any new notes by visiting the section in question from your main Notes window; for example, choose Notes under On My iPhone to create or edit anything that lives only on that one device.

3/ Stop; collaborate and listen — If you’re writing a note and look at the top of your screen, you’ll see a silhouette icon. Tap that, and your device’ll walk you through adding someone as a collaborator.
This means that anyone you add to that note will be able to see changes you make to it, which could be handy for all sorts of shared tasks. The only caveat is that you can only use this feature through iCloud, so you’ve gotta be logged in. (And if you need more info, check out Apple’s support article on this.)

4/ Save media you add to Notes — If you need to remember to buy or do something, taking a picture within a note is a good way to accomplish that. To do so, just tap on the little plus button within a note if you don’t see the toolbar then pick the camera icon to snap a picture.
The default means that none of those saved images and videos are added to your photo library, but if you’d like to switch that up, visit Settings> Notes and change that option. Afterward, the media you save in Notes will be saved in Photos, too.
(Within Settings> Notes, there’s also an option labeled New Notes Start With. If you’re not fond of your notes always having a big bold title or heading at the top, you can change that to ‘body’ and it’ll all just be regular text.)
[These Notes tips also came from Melissa Holt at Mac Observer.]

5/ Automatic reminders for events you set in Calendar — There’s no need to manually add a reminder to each and every meeting in your calendar. Instead, you can set the iOS Calendar app to automatically add a reminder for any new events you create. Tap Settings, choose Calendar, then tap the Default Alert Times setting.
Now select automatic alert times for up to three different types of Calendar events: birthdays, generic events and all-day events. For birthdays and all-day events, you can set a default alert anywhere from a week before to the morning of the event. For standard events, your auto-reminder choices range from a week before to the moment the event begins.
You can even add a Time to leave reminder that’ll let you know when to start commuting to an event, provided you’ve filled in the event’s Location field. Just enable the Time to Leave setting.
Back out of the Settings screen, head back to the Calendar app, and create a new event. When you do, you will see an alert already set up. [There are more iOS Calendar tips at Here’s The Thing.]

Five Tip Friday ~ Open Microsoft Office docs, iCloud in the Dock, default WiFi, your own shortcuts


Your dock in macOS is more powerful and interactive than you think, and it’s configurable.

1/ Open Microsoft Office docs in macOS Sierra without Microsoft Office — If you need to open (or export Microsoft) Office docs in macOS Sierra, but don’t want to buy and install the massive Office suite, you can use Pages, Numbers, and Keynote to open and save docs created with Microsoft Office. Every new Mac has these apps o them already, for free. If not, Pages, Numbers, and Keynote are available from the Mac App Store.
To open a Microsoft Office doc, drag it from a folder or even from within an email, and drop it on the Pages icon in the Dock – when the Pages icon goes dark, release the mouse or trackpad and Pages will convert and open the file. For an Excel doc, drag it over the Numbers app in the Dock and let go; Powerpoint over Keynote.
To export Pages, Numbers or Keynote documents as Word, Excel or Powerpoint, say for someone on a PC who only has these apps, choose File>Export to and select the correct app from the pop-out. Easy.

2/ Put the iCloud Drive icon (and others) in your Dock — In  Finder, in the menu bar, click Go, then Go to Folder near the bottom.
A window will appear where you can copy and paste the following directory:
/System/Library/CoreServices/Finder.app/Contents/Applications/
Here you’ll see six different apps that represent some Mac’s services: AirDrop, All My Files, Computer, iCloud Drive, Network, Recents. You can drag and drop any of these into the dock.
Unfortunately, they aren’t dynamic app icons unlike most, including Pages, Numbers and Keynote as above, Mail and others: if you drag a file onto the AirDrop icon, it won’t automatically open AirDrop and find your devices. You can only click on them, so it’s basically just a shortcut to these services. But now you won’t have to open Finder first before you jump to these locations. Hopefully it will save you a few precious seconds in your workflow.

3/ Set the default wireless network in macOS Sierra — By default, macOS Sierra attempts to join the wireless network it was most recently connected to. However, if you have a Wi-Fi network you use most often, you can set it as the default network in macOS Sierra.
The wireless networks your computer has connected to are listed in the Wi-Fi pane of Network preferences. You can set up your Mac to join a preferred network when you start your computer, wake it from sleep, or turn Wi-Fi on:
Choose Apple menu > System Preferences, then choose Network.
Click Wi-Fi in the list at the left, then click Advanced.
If Wi-Fi isn’t in the list, make sure your Mac has wireless capability, then click the Add button (a plus sign) at the bottom of the list. Click the Interface pop-up menu, choose Wi-Fi, give the service a name, then click Create.
Click Wi-Fi.
If the network you expect to see isn’t in the preferred networks list, click the Add button at the bottom of the list, then click Show Networks. Click the network you want to add to the list, then click Join. If the network is protected by a password, enter it.
Drag the the network you want to give highest priority to the top of the preferred networks list. This is the network your computer will try to join first.
(To delete a network from the list, select it, then click the Remove button – it’s the minus sign.)

4/ Hide All Day Events in Calendar — Apple has built in a way to hide all-day events, so you could use that to temporarily get more breathing room for your own scheduled items. To do so, you’ll just deselect Show All-Day Events under the View menu.

5/ Create your own keyboard shortcuts — Make note of any menu command you’d like a faster keyboard shortcut for, click on the Apple Menu, choose System Preferences and visit the Keyboard section. Here, click the Shortcuts tab and select App Shortcuts from the sidebar. That section has a plus button near the bottom, so if you click that, you can add your custom shortcut. In the first drop-down, choose the program you’re applying your shortcut to.

Then type in the command, indicating the menus and submenus it’s under with the ‘hyphen-greater than’ combo (shown above). Be sure to include any capitalisation and punctuation; if you need to type an ellipsis, the keyboard shortcut is Option-Semicolon.
Once you’re sure you have the command typed correctly, add in the Keyboard Shortcut field by just clicking within it and pressing your desired shortcut – for example, the Command key + Option + 9.  You’ll see your creation appear in the list after you click Add – your shortcut will also show up within the app you added it to.
Be sure, though, that the shortcut isn’t a duplicate of one already in use. If that’s the case, yours may not work, and you’ll have to come back here to System Preferences > Keyboard > Shortcuts > App Shortcuts and click on the original shortcut you created to press a new one.
(You may be able to add a custom keyboard shortcut without putting the menu hierarchy in (eg, using Show All-Day Events instead of View->Show All-Day Events), but doing so may mean that your shortcut acts flaky or stops working altogether. If you’ve got any more questions, feel free to check out Apple’s support article on this topic, as it’s fairly extensive. (From Mac Observer).

Five Tip Friday ~ Some tips for iOS and Watch users


Welcome to September, the month Apple launches an all-new iPhone! Until then lets rev up our existing iPhone use a little. 

1/  Selectively control Read Receipts for iMessage in iOS 10 — A read receipt in iMessage is simply a feature designed to let your contacts know when you’ve read their message. You can go into Settings to turn this on and off at will, but on iOS 9 and before, this setting turned it off for all contacts. With iOS 10 however, it’s possible to control read receipts for each of your contacts if they also have iPhones (otherwise the option is simply not available). Now you can let your boss know when you’ve read her message, while turning the feature off for that weird guy you met on Tinder [to quote Mac Observer!].
Open up a message from one of your contacts. In the upper right part of the screen, tap the blue circle with an ‘i’. There you can share your location, see a history of images and attachments with that contact – and control read receipts.]

2/ Modify AirPods behaviour — Once iOS 11 ships, which may be as soon as 12th September, you will have more options. For now, in iOS 10, you can change how your AirPods react when you double-tap on them, or switch what happens when you put them in your ears. You adjust these options on your iPhone or iPad. To get started, open your AirPods’ case or take them out of it, then visit Settings > Bluetooth on your paired iOS device.
There you’ll see a list of all of the Bluetooth devices you’ve added. If you don’t see Connected next to your AirPods, tap their name to connect.
Within this option, you can disconnect your AirPods (or have your device forget them entirely), change their name, or set what happens when you double-tap one of them. This is probably the most useful adjustment, as you could configure your AirPods to play/pause instead of invoking Siri with a double-tap.
Also on this screen are Automatic Ear Detection, which you can turn off if you don’t like your audio automatically being sent to your AirPods when you put them in your ears—and the Microphone setting. This lets you configure which AirPod you’d like to always be your microphone.

3/ Using 3D Touch in Spotlight — With a recent iPhone (6s/6s Plus or 7/7 Plus), you’re probably accustomed to your favourite uses for 3D Touch: looking at notifications within folders, opening new private tabs in Safari etc. You can also use Spotlight searches to find apps, and then if you press on a result within the Spotlight interface, you’ll get the same options you’d get by 3D-touching the app itself.
Start by swiping down on your home screen to open the iOS Spotlight search function, then type the name of an app into the search field at the top. Press with a little force on the app in the results to get the same Quick Action choices you would get from using 3D Touch on the app icon on the Home screen. You can use this, for example, to quickly find the Camera app and use its Quick Actions.

4/ In iOS 11, set up and customise Do Not Disturb While Driving — For those already beta-testing the next generation of iOS, you can do this now For the rest, you can do this soon. iOS 11 will add Do Not Disturb support for driving so you won’t get distracted while you’re cruising around town. You don’t have to use it, but if you do, it’s easy to set up and customise. Once iOS 11 is installed on your iPhone there’s a good chance you’ll get a dialogue asking if you want to turn on DND when you’re driving. The dialogue will pop up after you move off in your car.
Just tap Turn On While Driving and you’re set. Your iPhone will automatically go into DND mode when you’re in a moving car – it then mutes all incoming calls. You also won’t see other alerts and notifications while your car is in motion. (Of course, it won’ know if you’re driving or a passenger.)
DND While Driving can activate automatically when connected to your car’s Bluetooth, or manually. If you choose Manually, you will need to use the Do Not Disturb button in Control Center to activate the feature.
DND While Driving can auto-reply to text messages too. It’s your business who gets those messages, so you can change the settings and make your own custom reply:
Launch Settings on your iPhone
Tap Do Not Disturb
Choose Auto-Reply To
Select No One, Recents, Favorites, or All Contacts.
If you set your auto-reply to Favorites, it only goes to those people you’re in contact most. If you don’t want anyone to know when you’re in the car, choose No One.
To set an auto-reply, launch Settings on your iPhone
Tap Do Not Disturb
Choose Auto-Reply
Enter a custom reply message.
If you need to get a message through to someone who has DND While Driving active, follow up your first message with a second that only says ‘urgent’.

5/ How to tell if Apple Watch notifications are from a native app or an iPhone app — Sometimes when you get a notification on your Apple Watch, you can tap on it for further options, or to open a corresponding app. At other times, that notification is from your iPhone, and there’s not much you can do with it other than dismiss it.
Here’s how to quickly tell the difference — it’s all in the shape. App icons on watchOS are circles, and when you get a notification from an app that is native to the Apple Watch, tapping on it will open the corresponding app. When an alert arrives, or you are browsing through past ones in Notification Center, the corresponding app icon is located in the upper left. If it’s a circle, tapping once will provide quick options like reply or dismiss, and tapping a second time will open the corresponding app.
But if the icon is a square, that means it’s simply an iPhone notification because app icons on the iPhone are rounded-corner squares.
There aren’t as many options for dealing with notifications not from native watchOS apps. Tap and you’ll have an option to dismiss, with no second tap to open the app, because the app is only on your iPhone.
This subtle distinction of round or square is an easy way to tell what you can do directly from your wrist, without the need to pull your phone out of your pocket.

Five Tip Friday ~ Memories, screenshots, Preview views Exif data, wrangles GIFs


1/ Use Memories in the Photos app in macOS Sierra — Apple revamped the Photos App in macOS Sierra, adding a Memories feature, which is designed to help you rediscover favourite and forgotten moments from deep in your photo library. Memories automatically creates curated collections of your most meaningful photos and videos.
To use it, open the Photos app and click Memories in the left sidebar. You’ll see a summary of the Memory’s contents, chosen from the best photos in your library. Choose Show All to see every photo and video in the Memory.
Scroll down to see the people included in the Memory, a map showing where the photos and videos were taken, and a list of related Memories for you to explore. At the bottom of your Memory, you can find options to add the Memory to your favorites or delete it.

2/ Save a Memory movie in macOS Sierra — Scroll to the bottom of the screen and tap or click Add to Favorite Memories. You’ll find it in the Favorite [sic] Memories album of your Photos app. If you decide that you don’t want to save a Memory anymore, tap or click Remove from Favorite Memories.
When you add a Memory to your Favorites [sic ditto], you preserve it and keep it from going away when Photos creates new Memories. You can also share your experiences with friends and family. On your Mac, you can share the photos and videos from your Memory when you click.
On your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, play a Memory movie, then tap on it to show the editing and sharing options. Tap  and choose to share the movie through Messages, Mail, iCloud Photo Sharing, and your favourite social media sites.

3/ Directly paste Screenshots into Documents — First, hold down Command (⌘) + Shift + 4, to bring up the screenshot selection tool.
Next, hold down Control, and make your selection on the screen using your mouse.Click and drag diagonally, and when you let go, the screenshot is captured.
Open whatever document you want to paste the selection into, including email messages and web-page windows of sites you control, or Facebook, say, and press Command (⌘) +  V or right-click/control-click and choose Paste from the pop-out Contextual Menu, or select Paste from the Edit menu, and the screenshot you captured is pasted right there.

4/ View photo metadata, called Exif, using Preview Inspector — Preview is a superb and deceptively simple app built into macOS that has multiple uses, like viewing PDFs, photos and more. Preview Inspector is one its powerful, hidden features that makes Preview so useful.
Short for Exchangeable image file format, Exif data contains important information about a photo. Location, camera model, color space, exposure and more are contained in each image. If you need to quickly look at this information, using Preview is the easiest way.
Find the image you want in Finder, then right-click (or hold down your Control key and click on it) and select Open With Preview fro the menu that pops out.


Next, in Preview, click on Tools > Show Inspector in the menubar (or press ⌘ + I on your keyboard).
In the next window that pops up, click on the Exif tab. You’ll then see all of the pertinent information about your image.

5/ View and grab GIF frames in Preview — Open the GIF image in Preview – if this doesn’t happen when you double-click a GIF file, drag-and-drop the GIF onto the Preview icon in the Dock, or use macOS’s Quick Look feature to open the image (click the GIF’s icon ONCE, then press the spacebar, then click ‘Open with Preview’ in the upper right of the Quick Look window.
In Preview’s sidebar, scroll to the frame you want to save. Control- or Right-click and select Export As.
You can then export it in the file formats JPEG, PNG or PDF.

Five Tip Friday ~ for iOS and Apple Watch


1/ Change the Playlist pictures in iOS Music — By default, playlists within the Music app use the albums’ artwork as their identifying image. But you can take a picture to use or grab one from your Photos library: here’s how on iPhone/iPad.
Open the Music app, and then click on the Library tab to visit the Playlists section.
Touch the one you’d like to change the picture on, and tap the Edit button at top right on the subsequent screen.
In this editing mode, you’ll see a small photo icon appear on the playlist’s image at top left – tap that.
You’ll be given an option to either take a photo or choose one from your library.Choose, or take, and tap Done to finish the job.
The change will sync to your other devices if you’re using iCloud Music Library. Cool, right?

2/ Use your Apple Watch to auto unlock your Mac — Apple added a feature in macOS Sierra and watchOS 3 called Auto Unlock. This lets you automatically unlock your Mac by waking it up. It’s handy to use and easy to set up if you have an Apple Watch running watchOS 3 and a mid-2013 or newer Mac running macOS Sierra 10.2 or newer.
First you’ll need to set up two-factor authentication for your Apple ID, as this doesn’t work with two-step verification. Apple has a support page to switch from verification to authentication (Mac Observer has an article on setting up 2FA here).
Once that’s set up, turn on Bluetooth and Wi-Fi on your Mac. You’ll also need to be signed into your Watch and Mac with the same Apple ID and your Mac can’t be using Internet Sharing. Check to make sure in System Preferences > Sharing. Next, go to System Preferences > Security & Privacy.
Both your Mac and Apple Watch need to be set up with a passcode. On your Watch, go to Settings > Passcode > Turn Passcode On. On your Mac, go to System Preferences > Users & Groups > Change Password.
Now on your Mc, click on the Apple icon () in the upper left corner of your screen.
Click System Preferences > Security & Privacy > General.
Check the box next to Allow your Apple Watch to unlock your Mac.
It will take a couple of seconds to activate. Now, the next time you need to wake up your Mac, Apple Watch auto unlock will automatically unlock it. It’s just magic.

3/ Ditch the Honeycomb App Grid in watchOS 4 — Along with the Developer Beta 1 of iOS 11, Apple also recently released the first preview version of watchOS 4. This developer beta (so still not generally available to everyone) brings some under-the-hood enhancements, new watch faces and more intelligence and fitness features. It also includes something that wasn’t announced – you can now ditch the awkward honeycomb app grid and instead get a list of your installed apps:
Press the Digital Crown to get to your Apple Watch Home screen. Then, Force Touch the screen and a brand new configuration panel shows up.
Choose between grid view or list view.
Once you’ve made the switch, you can scroll normally through your apps in a list, sorted alphabetically. You can also rotate the Digital Crown to move through your apps, which are sorted alphabetically.
There isn’t any way to rearrange your apps in List View, at least for now. Bear in mind, though, this is still only Developer Beta 1 of watchOS 4 so more changes may be yet to come in future beta versions of the wearable operating system. The developer beta is available now, and the full release is expected in northern autumn 2017.
(It’s also worth noting that watchOS 4 will leave some iPhone owners out in the cold. It requires a paired iPhone 5S or later with iOS 11 to download and install. This is because Apple has removed 32-bit device support in iOS 11. Devices like the iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, and iPhone 5C are only 32-bit devices, so they aren’t supported by the latest version of the operating system.)

4/ iMazing — You know how getting files off an iPhone or iPad onto a Mac can be a mission, mostly because AirDrop only works sometimes? An app for macOS called iMazing changes all that. It’s not cheap though: a single license for iMazing costs US$39.99, a universal license is US$49.99, or you can get five licenses US$69.99 (for both Windows and Mac). all you need to do to unleash this power is plug your iPhone/iPad into your Mac with the charge cable (since it’s USB at the end that goes into the power charger). For example, via iTunes, it’s easy to transfer music from Mac to iPhone or iPad. What if you want to export tracks off your iOS device? That’s not possible in iTunes, but it’s a snap with iMazing: select the media files you want, whether they’re songs, movies, TV shows, podcasts, or audiobooks, then click Export to Folder, and iMazing will happily transfer them to your hard drive. It’s even smart about it, recognising the tracks you already have in iTunes and leaving them alone.

5/ Archive and even print Messages — If you want to save your text messages and iMessage conversations to your desktop, or even print them, with iMazing you can. It doesn’t matter if you want a PDF, text document, comma-separated values (CSV, like a spreadsheet) file, or a full printout of your messages, this app can handle it. You can also export attachments separately, for those times when you want to get a bunch of images out of your text message history.

There’s lots more about this app at Mac Observer.

Five Tip Friday ~ Finding things on Macs, secure Keychain notes, disabling Safari autoplay


1/ Use Boolean Oprators in Spotlight — All you need to do is insert the words AND, OR, or NOT (or a minus sign) into searches, depending on what you’re trying to find. For example, if you want to see files on your system with either ‘project’ or ‘writing’ in the title, invoke Spotlight by clicking on the magnifying glass in the upper-right corner of my screen or by using its keyboard shortcut (Command-Spacebar), and type: title:project OR title:writing
Note there’s no space after the colon.
Alternatively, you can find items from two separate dates: date:6/6/66 OR date:17/6/17
Use NOT (or the minus sign -) to exclude file types, for example, from your results:
date:6/6/66 NOT kind:pdf
If you have any more questions or would just like to see more ways to use this, check out the examples Apple posted on this support page.

2/ Find tagged items in macOS — If you’ve set up your Safari-like tabs to work in folders in macOS Sierra, it’s easy to find the items you’ve tagged. Click the Finder icon in the Dock to open a Finder window and do any of the following:
Search for a tag: Enter the tag color or name in the search field, then select the tag from the suggestions.
Ask Siri. Say something like: Find files with a red tag.
Select a tag in the sidebar: To see everything with a certain tag, click the tagin the Finder sidebar.
To change the items you see in the sidebar, choose Finder > Preferences, click Tags, then select the tags you want to see.
Arrange items by a tag: Click the Item Arrangement button , then choose Tags.
Sort items by a tag: In any view, choose View > Show View Options, then select the Tags checkbox. In List view and Cover Flow, move the pointer over the Tags column, then click it. Click the column name again to reverse the sort order.

3/ Go directly to a specific folder in macOS Sierra — You can jump directly to a specific folder in macOS Sierra: In the Finder, click the Go menu in the menu bar, then choose one of the following:
Enclosing Folder: Choose this option to open the parent folder for the current window. For example, if you’re in your Downloads folder, this option opens your All My Files, Documents, or other listed folders: Choose a folder from the list.
Recent Folders: Choose a folder from the submenu. (The submenu shows up to 10 recently opened folders.)
Go to Folder: Type the folder’s pathname (for example, /Library/Fonts/ or ~/Pictures/), then click Go.
A slash at the beginning of a pathname indicates that the starting point is the top level of your computer’s folder structure. A slash at the end indicates that this is a path to a folder, rather than a file.
A tilde (~) indicates your home folder. Most of your personal folders, such as Documents, Music, and Pictures, are in your home folder.
If you’re having trouble finding a folder, make sure you’re spelling its name correctly and typing the full path, including slashes.
You can also ask Siri to, for instance, ‘Open the home folder.’
(To reveal the hidden macOS Library folder, press and hold the Option key on your keyboard, then choose Library as it will be revealed in the Go list.)

4/  Using Keychain’s Secure Notes feature — If you need to store private information on your Mac like an Inland Revenue number, there is a feature of a built-in program called Keychain Access that’ll let you store notes in a very secure way. If you’d like to take a look, open the app first—you can get to it within the Applications > Utilities folder by using Finder’s Go menu.
Once the app is open, click on “Secure Notes” from the sidebar and then click on the keychain where you’d like to store yours.
Use either the login or iCloud keychain for this – the only difference is that the iCloud one will sync these notes to any other Macs that are set up with your iCloud Keychain. (The notes won’t sync to your iOS devices, though.)
Once you’ve selected both options, click the plus button at the bottom-left corner of the window. Then you can give your new note a name and type the stuff you want to keep private under the Note field.
Once finished typing, click Add and your note will appear in the list. If you want to look at it at any point afterward, just go back to Keychain Access, click Secure Notes in the sidebar, and choose the keychain you added it to.
Double-click on the note to view it, and when you do, you won’t see the secret info you typed yet—yay! It’s still all hidden and private and stuff.
You’ll need to click the “Show Note” box I’ve called out above, and then your Mac will make you type in your login password to prove that you have the right to view its contents.
Melissa Holt likes this method better than using iCloud’s password-protected notes because it’s sort of “security by obscurity” – no one will likely think to look in Keychain Access for your notes. Which is good if you’re the type who doesn’t want anyone to even know that you have secrets to keep! Plus, you only have to remember one password – your Mac’s login one – which makes losing access less likely, and it’s darned secure as long as no one knows that password. For those same reasons, I like using Keychain Access better than password-protected documents, too. But this is certainly better than what a lot of people do, which is using Contacts’ Notes field to store very secret data. [From Mac Observer.]

5/ Disable autoplay in Safari — If you hate it when certain sites auto-play videos when you arrive at their site [it’s why I stopped using the otherwise excellent Macworld site], you can disable video autoplay using Terminal: quit Safari completely. That means clicking Safari from the top left of the menu bar, and then Quit. Once that’s done, launch Terminal from Applications -> Utilities. In Terminal, type the following commands:

defaults write com.apple.Safari WebKitMediaPlaybackAllowsInline -bool false
defaults write com.apple.Safari com.apple.Safari.ContentPageGroupIdentifier.WebKit2AllowsInlineMediaPlayback -bool false

— If you’re running the WebKit Technology Preview, you’ll also need to run these commands in Terminal:

defaults write com.apple.SafariTechnologyPreview WebKitMediaPlaybackAllowsInline -bool false
defaults write com.apple.SafariTechnologyPreview com.apple.Safari.ContentPageGroupIdentifier.WebKit2AllowsInlineMediaPlayback -bool false

That’s it. Start up Safari once again, and enjoy a life free of video autoplay.

Five Tip Friday ~ Safari, privacy, wiFi and the Help Viewer


1/ Zoom in Safari using a Magic Trackpad — In the Trackpad or Mouse system preference pane, click the Scroll & Zoom tab, and then you can opt to check or uncheck Smart Zoom. Now, when you double-tap with two fingers, Safari and other apps will zoom the item tapped upon to fill the screen. Two-finger double-tap again, and it zooms back out to the normal view. This zoom remains preserved when you go back a page and back forward.
Apple also offers a systemwide zoom in the Accessibility preference pane: open the pane, select Zoom, and you can opt to enable or disable the Use Scroll Gesture with Modifier Keys to Zoom. (The Control key is the default modifier.)

2/ Prevent tracking in Safari —  macOS High Sierra will have a feature called Intelligent Tracking Prevention, and Sierra already has some anti-tracking abilities. Safari uses machine learning to prevent tracking in the browser, specially cross-site tracking. Open Safari and go to Preferences (press ⌘+,, or Safari > Preferences in the menu).
Click on the Privacy tab in the window that pops up.
You’ll see a new Website Tracking section (shown above) with two items: ‘Prevent cross-site tracking’ and ‘Ask websites not to track me’. The latter is also found in macOS Sierra and is equivalent to a Do Not Track setting. However, most websites won’t voluntarily honour this setting, and aren’t even legally obligated to do so.
(Apple also streamlined cookie blocking in Safari 11. Instead of having the usual settings like Always block, Allow from current website only, Allow from websites I visit, Always allow, in macOS High Sierra you will also just get the option to block all cookies, since Intelligent Tracking Prevention does the rest.)

3/ Use Modifier Keys with Safari history — You can click-and-hold on Safari’s back button to see a list of where you’ve been (above). This lets you quickly jump back to somewhere without hitting that back button several times.
There are a couple of things you can do with this button to make it even cooler: if you’re looking for URLs instead, hold down the Option key on your keyboard before you click and click-and-hold the back button to do just that.
If you want to keep your existing page as a tab or a window before you open something from your history, that’s easy too. Obviously, when you click the back button without holding it, Safari will go back to the last page you visited. Hold down the Shift key on your keyboard and click that button, and the browser will instead open your last page in a new window. If you hold down Command, your last page will open in a new tab.
This Shift-or-Command trick also works if you have the history view open (History menu>Show All History). If you click-and-hold on your back button to bring up that little popover, holding down Shift and choosing any of the pages you visited opens it in a new window; Command opens it in a new tab. This behavior is actually all through Safari: shift-click a bookmark or a history item, and it’ll open in a new window; Command-click a link, and it’ll open in a new tab.
(If your version of Safari isn’t behaving in the way described here, be sure to check out your settings at Safari > Preferences under the Tabs section.)

4/ Changing your WiFi Password on an AirPort device — Sometimes you’ve may want to change your Wi-Fi password – perhaps you gave it to someone you now wish you hadn’t, or maybe your roommate moved out, but you’ve seen them outside your house leeching off your connection. (I’m sure that’s happened to someone.) If you have an Apple router (like a Time Capsule, AirPort Extreme, AirPort Express), it’s really simple to change this.
Launch AirPort Utility (it’s in the Applications > Utilities folder, which you can easily get to using Finder’s Go menu.)
When AirPort Utility opens, click on your AirPort device and choose Edit.
You may have to enter the password for your device to do this; this is usually the same as your Wi-Fi password, but if it’s not, then…uh…just keep on guessing until you figure it out. Fingers crossed. (You might consider going and checking your keychain to see if it’s stored there if you’re having trouble.)
Once you click Edit, choose the Wireless tab at the top. There you’ll find your wireless password.
So just type what you’d like your new one to be into both the first password box and the Verify Password box. Be sure that the ‘Remember this password in my keychain’ choice is on, too, but don’t mess with any other settings there unless you know what you’re doing.
After your options are set, click Update. AirPort Utility will then of course warn you of what you’re about to do, and restart the device – full service will recommence after reboot.
Keep two things in in mind: first, changing your Wi-Fi password doesn’t change your base station device’s password; if you’d like to make that the same, head over to the Base Station tab within AirPort Utility.
Secondly, everything you own that connects to your Wi-Fi – iPhones, iPads, computers, Apple TVs, and printers, for example – will need to be reconnected to your network afterward, so don’t undertake this task lightly as you’ll be typing the new password into all those devices. It’s no fun to spend the evening changing passwords on printers if you haven’t planned for it.

5/ Use Terminal to send the macOS Help Viewer to the back — You can access your Mac’s built-in support info by choosing Help from the menu at the top of any program. There is one irritation, though: the Help Viewer window always sits on top of everything else, even if you switch programs. It will stay in front until you close it (although you can Minimise it into the Dock by clicking the orange button at top left). Staying on top of everything can be frustrating  when you’re attempting to try out a solution that the help pages suggest.
Luckily, you can change this behavior through Terminal (it’s in your Utilities folder inside the Applications folder). To do so, copy the following command…

defaults write com.apple.helpviewer DevMode -bool YES

…and paste it into the Terminal program after the flashing prompt. When the command is pasted in, press Return, and then the Help Viewer window will behave just like most of the other windows on your Mac: if you click on another window or program, it’ll move to the background.
If you decide you want to put things back the way they were, just go back to Terminal, replace the “YES” with “NO” in the command, and press Return:

defaults write com.apple.helpviewer DevMode -bool NO

Five Tip Friday ~ Checking the weather Reminders, Night Shift Calendar & extra extras


1/ Check the Weather quickly using Spotlight — If you’re curious what the weather is like, you can launch the stock or a 3rd party weather app, sure, or just pull down on a Home Screen page to get Spotlight (device and ’net search) to appear. Type in “weather (and location)” to get the weather report for that spot. You’ll get the details you’re looking for. The same applies to any day within the normal seven-day forecast period. This Spotlight trick works on iPad, too. (It even works on macOS in Spotlight.)

2/ Delete all Reminders in a list — Sometimes, you want to quickly delete all reminders in a list. People use the Reminders app as a catch-all for everything we want to remember, whether it’s work-related or a group of tasks we need to cary out.
Within iOS, there’s a way to delete not only the list, but also all the reminders within that list. This works for things you’ve marked as completed, along with tasks that you haven’t tapped to show them as done. Launch the Reminders app and navigate to the list you want to delete.
Now, tap the Edit button in the top right corner of the app.
Scroll to the bottom (if you can’t see it it) and find the item that says Delete List.
Tap that option and confirm you want to delete all the reminders. (This is a viable on Mac too: secondary click (right- or Control-click) the name of the list and choose Delete. If you are working in iCloud.com, you can go to a Reminders list, click on Options, and then choose Delete. When you delete a Reminders list from one device, that action will take place on every device logged into the same iCloud account.

3/ Night Shift Mode into Staying on All the Time — You can have Night Shift on iOS on all the time if you prefer the softer lighting (it’s more yellowish) of Night Shift mode all the time. Night Shift is most useful after sunset, you may want to have it enabled all the time. This display-based setting makes your screen “warmer,” usually at night, to cut down on blue light exposure which is believed to keep people awake. To get to this setting: Settings> Display & Brightness> Night Shift. The default is to have the mode activate at sunset, and then deactivate at sunrise but you can also set custom start and stop times for the mode.
To keep Night Shift on during the day, you need to set custom hours for the feature. Unfortunately, you can’t set the start and stop times the same so you have to decide on a one-minute time of the day (or night) when it’s okay for the mode to briefly deactivate: for example, Night Shift could temporarily stop at 1:59am. Then, the mode turns back on at 2am.

4/ Set your default Calendar across devices — People can find their Mac set to add events by default to one calendar while their iPhone is adding them automatically to a different one. This can make it seem that iPhone events are colour-coded differently to Mac events, which is confusing.
All your Apple devices that can sync with your iCloud account have a “default calendar” setting that’ll be applied when you don’t specifically change which one you’d like to add an event to. On the iPhone and iPad, this option is listed under Settings > Calendar. On the Mac, this setting is within Calendar > Preferences under the “General” tab.

5/ Dealing with other calendar services — When a device is set to sync to a calendar (say, a Google one) and that particular calendar isn’t even configured on another of that person’s devices, it will make it seem like everything from one device is disappearing. You can check which accounts you’ve got set to sync calendars on the Mac under System Preferences > Internet Accounts.
Any of your accounts that have “Calendars” listed in grey underneath their names are syncing that service with your Mac. Verify that you’ve got the same list turned on for your iPhone or iPad at Settings > Calendar > Accounts.

Extra – The Health app: as Apple Insider puts it in a detailed explanation, the launchpad for all things is the Health Data tab, which lists all of the categories the app can handle. While Activity, Mindfulness, Nutrition and Sleep are front-and-center, others include Body Measurements,  Health Records, Reproductive Health, Results and Vitals. These all break down into numerous subcategories, where the real meat of the app is found. Under “Activity,” for instance, are items like steps, workout duration, and active energy consumption. Tapping on one displays a graph with adjustable views, as well as an explanation, suggested apps, and a set of configuration options.

Extra extra — the logic of iPhone/iPad Force Quitting: The Mac Observer has a detailed description of why and when you may need to do this, and when you should’t worry.

Five Tip Friday ~ Live Photos in macOS, email threads, finding 32-bit apps, Calendar invites, blank disk images


1/ View ‘Live Photos’ in macOS Sierra’s Photos app — The Live Photos feature of recent iPhones is a lot of fun. It captures 1.5 seconds of movement surrounding a 12-megapixel still image (think the “moving newspaper” photos in the Harry Potter films). A Live Photo is signified by a small concentric circle and “Live” text in the corner of the picture. If you want to play the video portion of a Live Photo in macOS Sierra, here’s how:
Open the Photos app.
Open any album where a Live Photo is contained
Open any Live Photo by double-clicking on it.
Hover the mouse cursor over the Live Photo to play the video portion of the picture in Photos on Mac.

2/ Turning Off Highlighting on Related Messages in macOS Mail — You can turn this view off really easily by picking a mailbox from the sidebar and deselecting Organize by Conversation from the View menu.
That choice is set on a per-mailbox basis, though, so you’ll need to go through and do it for all of your mailboxes if you never want to see conversations again.
There is a related feature that drives me nuts, too. Depending on your settings, Mail may be highlighting all related messages with a color when you click on just one of them, even if conversation view is off. Click on an email in grey, and then all of the other messages from that thread light up in blue. Maybe that’s handy for you, but if you find it visually confusing, you can disable this. Choose Mail > Preferences from the menus at the top, and then when the Preferences window appears, click on the Viewing tab. The option Highlight messages with color when not grouped is what you turn off if you aren’t a fan of this feature. If you prefer, you could also click on that little coloured box next to Highlight messages with color when not grouped to pick a different colour to use for the highlight. Then you make it really, really obvious why those messages are coloured.

3/ How to See Which Mac Apps are 32-Bit — Apple plans to stop support for 32-bit apps across iOS and macOS. While iOS 11 will remove them this fall, macOS will continue to support them until 2019. Nevertheless, it doesn’t hurt to start early and find the 32-bit Mac apps. If you do find that software you rely on is 32-bit, contact the developer and see if they plan to update to 64-bit. Most developers will, but older software may not get this support, so you might have to start finding alternatives.
On your Mac’s desktop, click on the Apple logo () at the upper left of the screen.
Click About This Mac.
In the window that pops up, click System Report.
Next, in the System Information app that this brings up, find Applications under Software in the left menu.
Click on Applications, and your Mac will take a few seconds to compile the list.
Once it’s finished, scroll sideways to right until you see the header 64-bit (Intel).
Apps will have a Yes/No designation to determine whether they are 32-bit Mac apps or not. “Yes” means they’re 64-bit and “No” means they’re 32-bit.
Many of the items in the list will be from Apple; you don’t need to worry about those. Instead, look for the ones that say Identified Developer.

4/ Contacting Calendar invitees — There’s an easy way to send an email or a message to all of the participants to an event on a Calendar if you need to pass along new information without putting it on the invite. Just right- or Control-click on the event in question. The contextual menu  that appears contains all sorts of helpful options, like a way to switch up the calendar the event is on, for example. But the two choices near the bottom are the ones that concern us: Email All Participants and Message All Participants. If you pick Email, your Mac will start composing one to all of the listed invitees with the details of the event already included in the body of the email. You can then add in any information you need to!
The steps to do this on iOS are simple, too. Tap on the event, and then scroll down to find the Invitees section.
Tap that, and you’ll see a small envelope icon that you can use to email the participants. This is much faster than typing everyone’s email in, and easier than having to remember who all is coming in the first place. (From the Mac Observer.)

 

5/ How to create a blank disk image for storage using macOS Sierra’s Disk Utility — Using the Disk Utility in macOS Sierra, you can create a blank disk image for storage. A disk image (.dmg file) is a file that looks and acts like a mountable device or volume like  hard drive or thumb/USB drive, but it’s not – it’s virtual. But you can fill an empty disk image with data, then use it to create disks, CDs, or DVDs [from Apple World Today], or even unmount it, and mount it when you need it, so it’s generally hidden.
To create an empty disk image:
Choose File > New Image > Blank Image.
Enter a file name for the disk image, add tags if necessary, then choose where to save it. This is the name that appears in the Finder, where you save the disk image file before opening it.
In the Name field, enter the name for the disk image.
This is the name that appears on your desktop and in the Finder sidebar, after you open the disk image.
In the Size field, enter a size for the disk image.
Click the Format pop-up menu, then choose the format for the disk:
If the disk will be used with Mac computers, choose Mac OS Extended (Journaled) or Mac OS Extended (Case-sensitive, Journaled). If the disk will be used with Windows or Mac computers and is 32 GB or less, choose MS-DOS (FAT). If the disk will be used with Windows or Mac computers and is over 32 GB, choose ExFAT.
To encrypt the disk image, click the Encryption pop-up menu, then choose an encryption option.Click the Partitions pop-up menu, then choose a partition layout. Click the Image Format pop-up menu, then choose an option:
Sparse bundle: Same as a sparse image, but the directory data for the image is stored differently. Uses the .sparsebundle file extension.
Sparse: Creates an expandable file that shrinks and grows as needed. No additional space is used. Uses the .sparseimage file extension.
Read/write: Allows you to add files to the disk image after it’s created. Uses the .dmg file extension.
DVD/CD master: Changes the size of the image to 177 MB (CD 8 cm). Uses the .cdr file extension.
Click Save, then click Done.
Disk Utility creates the disk image file where you saved it in the Finder and mounts its disk icon on your desktop and in the Finder sidebar.

Five Tip Friday ~ iOS tips


1/ Check your iPhone battery percentage from macOS Sierra — If you are an iOS user who also has a Mac, making sure your Mac and iPhone are both using the same iCloud account and you have Bluetooth enabled, you can hold down the Option key on your Mac’s keyboard and click the Wi-Fi icon in the Mac menu bar. After a second or so, your iPhone will show up in the Personal Hotspot section even if you’re not using it to set up a personal hotspot.
If you’re not using it as a personal hotspot, that option will be in light grey; if you are using the iPhone for that purpose, Personal Hotspot will be in bold letters. either way, the battery icon and signal strength is displayed (left).
However, if you mouse over your iPhone’s line, a small menu will appear that shows the exact percentage of battery you have left (below).

2/ Individual Read Receipts in Messages — You can turn on read receipts in Messages for just one contact. If you tap the information button (an “i” with a circle around it at top-right of your screen) you’ll see the option to enable read receipts just for that person.

3/ Take screen shots on iPhone and iPad — The ability to quickly snap a photo of whatever’s on your iPhone’s (or iPad’s) screen. It’s handy for everything from documenting buggy iOS apps to quickly sharing a text message thread with a friend.
Just press the Sleep/Wake (on the top right of your iPhone/iPad) and the Home button (the dished button at bottom centre of your screen) at the same time. The screen will flash and you’ll hear a telltale camera snap, then find your screenshot sitting in the iOS Photos app’s Screenshots album or in your Camera Roll. From there, you can share it by tapping the Share Sheet button (the square button with the upward arrow).

4/ Pinch-and-zoom to enlarge stickers — You can actually adjust how large or small stickers are before you send them: when you’re peeling a sticker off to put it somewhere in your conversation, add a second finger and pinch-to-zoom. This way you can make it bigger or smaller before you drop it into the chat.

5/ Unfreeze a frozen iPhone — It’s winter here but hey, this can happen in summer too. Sometimes your iPhone may come to a grinding halt, perhaps because of an errant app, or maybe iOS itself has locked itself up for some reason. Generally speaking, quitting a frozen app (by double-clicking the Home button, then swiping up on the app’s multitasking card that appears) is enough to fix the problem. You could also try a standard restart (press and hold the Sleep/Wake button until the “slide to power off” slider appears).
But if an app remains stubbornly stuck—or, worse still, if iOS becomes completely locked up—there’s another way to get things moving again: by force restarting your iPhone (a.k.a., a “hard” reset).
On pre-iPhone 7 models: Press the Sleep/Wake and Home buttons—but instead of letting them go immediately as you would when taking a screenshot, keep holding them until the screen goes blank. In a moment or so, you should see the Apple logo, a sure sign that your iPhone (or iPad) is rebooting itself.
On iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus: Press and hold the Sleep/Wake and volume-down buttons until you see the Apple logo.

Five Tip Friday ~ hidden gems in macOS can be genuinely useful


Hello, Mac acolytes, another five fine tips for your Friday.

1/ Two ways to turn on Do Not Disturb — If you’re in the Notification Center (this is under the little 3-lines-3 dots icon at top right of your Mac screen) the already, simply pull down the panel until you see Do Not Disturb. If your Mac supports it, you can also enable Night Shift mode from there.
Alternatively, just Option-click (hold down the Option key on your keyboard and click) the Notification Center icon in the status bar, and Do Not Disturb will turn on.

2/ Rule Launchpad — Do you use Launchpad, the iPad-like app launching interface? I don’t. But if you do, why not set it up how you want to? You can delete apps from your Applications folder using Launchpad, just like you can from the Home Screen on iOS. Simply bring up the Launchpad app, and press the Option key until the apps start wiggling. You’ll see X symbols in the apps you can delete, so go ahead and clean up your Applications folder. (Technically, you should be using an app cleaner, which deletes files elsewhere that are connected to apps in the Applications folder as well, but for little apps, this can be fine.)
Also note this is most unlike the Dock, since deleting an app from the Dock leaves that app safe in Applications – it just removes the quick link  button to the app that the Dock generates for you.

3/ Filter Unread Messages in macOS Mail — The Mail app now allows you to filter your unread messages. At the top of the messages pane, you’ll see a circle with an upside-down triangle. Just click on that little button, and Mail will filter your email, showing you only unread messages.

4/ Quick Look at Documents and Images — The Finder has a Quick Look feature. After you’ve single-clicked on a document, image, or other types of files, press the space bar on your keyboard. A quick preview of that file will show up, along with the option to open it in the correct app. Remember, a single-click selects, a double-click launches – the confusion here is buttons, like items in the Dock,which launch with a single click.
(There’s one more important attribute of buttons in the Dock, by the way – click-and-hold, which displays new and different functions in a pop-out menu.)

5/ Quickly get lyrics to songs in Apple Music — If you’re an Apple Music subscriber and use iTunes on your Mac, you’ll be pleased to know you can access song lyrics without ever leaving the app. If you click the “Up Next” button to the right of the status window, you’ll see a tab for lyrics. Click it …

Five Tip Friday ~ Safari in macOS


1/ How to clear your Safari browsing history in macOS Sierra — You can remove all records that macOS Sierra’s Safari keeps of where you’ve browsed during a period of time you want. If your Mac and your other devices have Safari turned on to sync in iCloud preferences, your browsing history is removed from all of those devices.
Clearing your browsing history in Safari doesn’t clear any browsing histories kept independently by websites you visited. Choose History > Clear History, click the pop-up menu, then choose how far back you want your browsing history cleared.
When you clear your history, Safari removes all the data it saves as a result of your browsing, including the history of webpages you visited, the back and forward list for open webpages, Top Sites that aren’t marked as permanent, your frequently visited site list, recent searches, and more. You will need to log into services like Facebook again … so make sure you really want to remove all this data before you clear your Safari history.

2/ Bookmark folders — If you’re using Safari’s Favorites Bar (which can be revealed by choosing View > Show Favorites Bar from the program’s menus at the top), there are a few neat things you can do with folders full of bookmarks (Bookmarks menu, Add Bookmarks Folder). You can tell what bookmarks in the Favourites Bar are folders because of those tiny downward-caret-arrow things to the right of each one (above). Apple calls these Disclosure Triangles because clicking them always reveals things. If you click on one, you’ll note the Open in New Tabs option.
Choose that, and obviously the bookmarks within that folder will open in their own tabs, which is a fast way to launch a whole bunch of sites at once. If, however, you hold down the Option key on your keyboard before you click there, Open in New Tabs switches to Replace Tabs. This means any tabs you had in your existing Safari window will vanish and be replaced by the ones in the folder you chose. Neat!

3/ For an even faster way to do either of those things — Use the Command key or the Option key. If you hold down Command and click on any toolbar bookmarks folder, it’ll open the sites within in new tabs; hold down Option and click one, and Safari will replace your existing tabs like we just discussed.

4/ Set your folders to automatically replace existing ones with just a click — To configure that, right- or Control-click on the folder and pick Automatically Replace Tabs from the contextual menu.
That will add a little square next to the folder in your toolbar, which will mean a single click will replace all of your existing tabs with the ones in that folder. (Be careful about doing that accidentally. If that happens, there are ways to recover your lost tabs.)

5/ Some of this functionality is available from the bookmarks sidebar if you prefer that view — For example, you can right- or Control-click on folders from there to pick Open in New Tabs. Holding down the Option key will switch that to Replace Tabs, as it does in the toolbar. [These last four tips came from The Mac Observer, which has more pictures.]