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The Ultimate Guide for switching from a PC to a Mac
(Part 2 - coming soon)

Friday, March 16, 2007

Forcing an app to open a file!

On a Mac, files can easily be opened by dragging the file to the app in the Dock. The application will then run and open the file. Sometimes however, the apps won't become highlighted when you bring the file over it and it will refuse to open. This happens when the file is supposedly not supported by this app. This is not always true and it happened to me many times with VLC. The video file ran great but VLC didn't recognize it as supported at first. A cool fix exists however, when you drag an unsupported file, you simply have to push "Command-Alt" and boom the icon becomes highlighted and it will force the app to try opening the desired file. It worked with every application I tried it with.

11 Comments:

Blogger Dustin said...

I hope by "Command-Alt" you mean "Command-Option" =P

- Dustin

March 16, 2007 at 3:32 AM  
Blogger Lee Vickers said...

"Apple-Alt"? ;o)

March 16, 2007 at 4:17 AM  
Blogger fred said...

what's an "app" in my dock?
Fred

March 16, 2007 at 7:05 AM  
Blogger astfgl said...

'app' means application

March 16, 2007 at 7:54 AM  
Blogger MacGeek said...

Yes, Command-Option or Command-Alt. I find Alt easier because new Macs have "alt" written on the key but not option! I'll make sure I mention both in future tips (Alt and Option).

MacGeek

March 16, 2007 at 8:29 AM  
Blogger Pablo said...

Hi... does somebody know how to recommend a tip to Macgeek? I couldn't find a link to send him/her a comment.

Thx!

March 16, 2007 at 10:46 AM  
Blogger Johnthony said...

Pablo, First go to the main page. Click on "A New Mac Tip Every Day" at the top. Then look in the "links" section on the right side of the page. It's the third one down.

March 16, 2007 at 1:10 PM  
Blogger Sacha said...

how do I do this manoevre on a Macbook using only a trackpad ???

eternally grateful.

March 17, 2007 at 10:22 PM  
Blogger MacGeek said...

I don't think it will be different on a portable. You can drag the file with the trackpad and press Command-Option (Command-Alt) to force the app to open this type of file.

Let me know if you still have problems!

MacGeek

March 17, 2007 at 11:10 PM  
Blogger Pablo said...

Johntony, thankx!

March 18, 2007 at 11:06 AM  
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