Monday, December 23, 2013

Questions and answers

Following a system restore on my MacBook running OS X 10.6.8, I’ve lost permission to access backups prior to the restore. How can I fix this?

This probably occurred because during the restore you’ve been added as a new user additional to the original user. Although your user name may be the same, OS X knows users as numbers, typically making the first admin user 501. You may discover that your current numeric ID is 502. Under the standard permissions set for folders in the Backups.backupdb folder used for storage by Time Machine, this would be seen as a different user, hence lacking permissions to access those backups. Sometimes you can prevent this from happening during a system restore, but once it has occurred, the only reliable way to address it is to change permissions on the affected folders. If you had a tame Unix wizard to hand, there are some neat command line tricks they could use.

I was sad to learn that FileMaker had abandoned its Bento database, and that it’s incompatible with Mavericks. Can I create dual-boot partitions so I can drop back to Mountain Lion to use Bento 4? If so, how?

Bento was a sad loss., but Bento 4 appears to have no compatibility issues with Mavericks, so you can safely upgrade to Mavericks without risking loss of access to your databases. However, you raise an excellent point: how to set up a dual-boot system that will allow you access to both Mountain Lion and Mavericks. If you have access to an external drive capacious enough to contain each partition, you could clone your current Mountain Lion startup volume to it, restart from that external drive, repartition your internal drive, clone the Mountain Lion volume back to its partition and then install Mavericks afresh to the other volume. We would be interested to hear from users who have accomplished this.

l’m running iPhoto 9.4.3 under OS X 10.8.5 and haven’t printed directly from iPhoto for some time. The other day I went to do so, only to be told that the theme was missing. Where does iPhoto keep themes, and how can I workaround this?
 Normally, current iPhoto themes are stored inside the iPhoto app itself, in the path Contents/Resources/Themes. Some localised components are tucked away in the Themes.Common folder inside the Resources folder there. Additional themes appear in /Library/Application Support/iPhoto/Themes. You might be able to keep themes in folders having a similar path in other libraries, including that in your Home folder, but those aren’t usual. When themes are correctly located, iPhoto should find and use them automatically. It’s worth repairing permissions to ensure this isn’t the result of incorrect permissions. However, you probably used a legacy theme that hasn’t ported across to an update, or has become lost. If iPhoto can’t handle an old theme, change theme via the button at the top right of the window.

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