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Had a client over today with some Mac issues.
Was getting disk full messages, despite having 130Gig free.

Did the usual stuff – disk repair, disk verify (caught some small things).
That fixed the disk full messages.

Then the client told me – oh, by the way, Safari doesn’t open.

Tailing the system log in console still revealed issues.

14/04/09 09:07:43 com.apple.launchctl.System[2] could not fetch history: Cannot allocate memory
14/04/09 09:07:43 com.apple.launchctl.System[2] BootCacheControl: could not stop cache/fetch history: Cannot allocate memory

A quick google of that error showed it was caused by…. Wacom drivers.

While Wacom have updated drivers for other tablets, the client uses a Bamboo, which hasn’t had driver updates since 2007.

Checking the logs while opening Safari revealed that it was trying to open a non-existent file called com.pentablet.defaults.xml

On the off chance that this would work, I created a blank file in terminal.

Terminal
sudo su
[enter in your password]
cd /Library/Preferences
ls -al com.pentablet.defaults.xml

If (and ONLY if) no file is found, do this:

echo > com.pentablet.defaults.xml
exit
exit

Safari will open again.

Hopefully Wacom will release newer less buggy drivers sometime soon.

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One of my clients called asking why all his image attachments were suddenly postage stamp sized.
We both use Mac’s, and to be honest I had no idea, until I tried to send an image attachment myself.

Turns out that in Apple Mail, the simple stuff eludes us “smart” IT types by being obscure.

After attaching an image in Mail, Apple sneaks a new menu at the bottom of the page where you can choose the image size.

See below for an example:

Once we had that changed back to a more reasonable default (Medium in this case), all was well in the land, and we both learned something new!

Notes for Apple (just in case someone’s listening):

I like the idea, but I think the implementation leaves something to be desired.  The UI for this is very non-intuitive, some kind of hinting wouldn’t go amiss here, or dare I say it, a total relocation of this to the top of the window with the other icons and menu options.

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1) Find out the Network name and Mac address for the computer:
Network Name is here:
System Preferences / Sharing / Computer Name
eg  Lawrence’s MacBook
Write it down, we’ll need it in step 2.
Mac Address is here:
System Preferences / Network –  Ethernet / Ethernet
eg
mac address – 00:1b:00:99:cd:1a
Write it down, we’ll need it in step 2.
2) Create a Time Machine Empty Backup file in Terminal
Open up Terminal
Spotlight-> Terminal
Change to the root folder.
cd /
We’ll need to paste this into terminal –
hdiutil create -size 300g -fs HFS+J -type SPARSEBUNDLE -volname “COMPUTER NAME” “COMPUTER NAME_MACADDRESS.sparsebundle”
Replace COMPUTER NAME and MACADDRESS with the ones from step 1. The MACADDRESS needs to have bypass surgery to remove its colons.
eg:
My computer details are
Computer Name: Lawrence Sheed’s MacBook
Mac Address: 00:1b:00:99:cd:1a
So my line would look like this:
hdiutil create -size 300g -fs HFS+J -type SPARSEBUNDLE -volname “Lawrence Sheed’s MacBook” “Lawrence Sheed’s MacBook_001b632eb218.sparsebundle”
3)  Copy file to the network share in root folder \
Once you have the file created in step 2, copy that file to the Network Share where you want to use Time Machine.
The backup file needs to go to the root folder \ on the share.
4) Configure Time machine to allow use on network shares
(in terminal)
defaults write com.apple.systempreferences TMShowUnsupportedNetworkVolumes 1
4) In Time Machine, point to the drive.
System Preferences / Time Machine
Choose the network drive..
It will now allow you to backup to the network share.
Tested and working in 10.5.5 Leopard.
Thats it!