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

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Opening the "Displays" or "Sound" sections of System Preferences!

Opening System Preferences each time you want to change your Displays or Sound settings can be a pain, especially if you often hook up your Mac to an external display or you often want to change the sound inputs and outputs (like when recording a podcast or maybe for Skype). There is however a really quick way of getting to the right spot instantly. If you hold down "Option" and change the volume, it will open System Preferences in the Sound section. The same is true when you hold down "Option" and change the brightness. It will open the display settings. These two keyboard shortcuts can really speed things up.

17 Comments:

Blogger A said...

This is a great tip. Thanks!!

I do have an odd question though...So what exactly happens when you use the [OPTION] key at the same time you move the slider up and down to change the volume using the icon on the menu bar?

August 27, 2007 at 9:44 PM  
Blogger El Chino said...

Amazing tip! By the way, on a MacBook Pro (as I just found out) you can press "Option" and one of the keyboard brightness keys and go to the keyboard and mice settings.

August 27, 2007 at 11:11 PM  
Blogger sardough said...

i have a totally unrelated question but i wasn't sure where to ask. sometimes i want to drag a file from an opened application (like iphoto) to my desktop but all my opened applications are in the way and i have to move each one, one at a time, to get a space on my desktop to drag to. is there an easier way?

August 27, 2007 at 11:40 PM  
Blogger sardough said...

i have a totally unrelated question but i wasn't sure where to ask. sometimes i want to drag a file from an opened application (like iphoto) to my desktop but all my opened applications are in the way and i have to move each one, one at a time, to get a space on my desktop to drag to. is there an easier way?

August 27, 2007 at 11:40 PM  
Blogger MacTipper said...

Why not use Desktop Expose? (I think it's F12 by default.) To change it, go to System Preferences>Dashboard & Exposé

Hope this helps
MacTipper
My Mac-Tipping Blog

August 27, 2007 at 11:57 PM  
Blogger MacGeek said...

Sardough: Actually, using Expose will hide all windows. If you want to keep the running application but get rid of the others, the best way is to use "Hide Others". The shortcut is "Option - Command - H".

MacGeek

August 28, 2007 at 12:04 AM  
Blogger MacTipper said...

Actually, it's F11 not F12. (My bad.)

MacTipper
My Mac-Tipping Blog

August 28, 2007 at 12:17 AM  
Blogger Justin said...

The best way is to set up your hot corners. That way you can drag the file to the top corner, which lets you see only your desktop, then drop your file onto the desktop. Hot corners are set up under System Preferences.

August 28, 2007 at 2:10 AM  
Blogger Tobias said...

I am loving this one, thanks

August 28, 2007 at 10:47 AM  
Blogger MacBlack said...

Good one MacGeek....makes me wonder if MacTipper even has a Mac with his posts today. I guess others are right.....he is just here to advertise his shameful blog.

August 28, 2007 at 4:39 PM  
Blogger deakin said...

seriously, where's the brightness key? i don't see any on my keyboard ><

August 28, 2007 at 11:46 PM  
Blogger François said...

Great tip. I notice however that the option key and the {brightness or volume} keys have to be pressed on the same keyboard. Explanaiton: I have a MacBookPro on a stand at the office and use an external keyboard to work. If I try the combination of keys using both KBs, it doesn't work. But on the same KB, great! Thx.

August 29, 2007 at 10:18 AM  
Blogger MacRick said...

deakin, on the full size keyboard the brightness keys are F14 and F15

August 29, 2007 at 1:09 PM  
Blogger Vincent O. said...

cool tip !!
thanks, man

August 29, 2007 at 2:31 PM  
Blogger Vincent O. said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

August 29, 2007 at 2:31 PM  
Blogger dvsjr said...

Another tip that pertains to this issue is to hold down both the Command and Option keys at the same time, and then click the program you are using (iPhoto in the example) in the dock. This will hide all other programs but iPhoto, allowing you to see the desktop and drag your file from iPhoto. hth!

August 29, 2007 at 5:07 PM  
Blogger ailaG said...

deakin: on a macbook pro (probably a macbook as well) that's F1, F2 - or if you choose the F keys to do their normal function (in the settings) then it's fn+F1, fn+F2.

dvsjr, that's a great tip.. but how do you undo it? (when we're done with the desktop)

August 31, 2007 at 7:26 AM  

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