Upgrade to Lion

It seemed like only a year ago, I upgraded my laptop to run Snow Leopard. And now I’ve gone on to getting Lion (didn’t take almost a year to upgrade — good sign?).

I’ve found some issues (and I’ve only used it for less than a day), and here are a few notes:

  • First time I’m installing an OS in OS X via the Mac AppStore. It feels very much like doing an “apt-get dist-upgrade”. All 3.5GB of it.
  • Immediately running Software Update will lead you to an error. It seems that just waiting it out (maybe after Spotlight finishes?) is the solution because this is an error I cannot repeat any longer. As always there are updates awaiting.
  • I’m a big fan of Spaces. In Lion, they’ve created something called Mission Control. It takes a little bit of getting used to, but you can create spaces, as well as assign apps to spaces. Spaces (workspaces) are key to how I work — I’ve been doing them on all my Linux desktop, so its crucial it works. The best article for you to acclimatize yourself is Using Spaces on OSX Lion by Matt Legend Gemmell.
  • System Preferences -> Trackpad -> Scroll & Zoom. Untick “Scroll direction: natural”. I don’t see how this was a smart default because it’s not natural in any way, shape or form.
  • I was typing in OmniOutliner and I realized that OSX was trying to correct my spelling. It reminded me too much of using a mobile phone because it wasn’t my spelling that was off — it was picking on names. Best way is to turn off auto correct for spelling.
  • XCode goes away. You have to get it for free via the Mac AppStore (over 3GB download). And when you download tools from the AppStore you still have to manually install it from the /Applications folder. This is where Linux/BSD package management gets it done right.
  • Homebrew just continued to work out of the box after XCode/GCC/etc. came back.
  • MsgFiler now only works if you grab it via the Mac AppStore. Crucial for filing messages and archiving if you use Apple Mail.
  • Apple Mail took ages to convert my database. The new look is definitely not something I am accustomed to, but they allow a Classic View (Mail -> Preferences -> Viewing – Use classic layout). I hope this option never goes away.
  • The ability to bounce a message has disappeared. There is a guide on how to bring bounce back, using Automator and AppleScript. I think I’ve got to edit that script to ensure that after a bounce it also moves the message to the trash.
  • I like the status updates I get from Terminal (like when it’s running big operations, waiting to connect to the server via SSH, etc.)
  • Things generally seem snappy. Waking up from sleep seems better. All this using spinning disk on the MBP (though I do have 8GB of RAM).
  • Scroll bars have disappeared until you actually scroll. I wonder if this is a good UI change. Or are people naturally expected to just scroll? I can see this impacting web design more, in future…

Annoyances I haven’t fixed yet?

NetAuthAgentSome have said this is a Time Machine problem and it will go away after Time Machine runs. It seems to go away when Time Machine is running but when I disconnect the external disk, it comes back intermittently. Some claim its an AirDrop issue. Some claim its due to the fact that Time Machine does snapshots via something called Mobile Time Machine. I can assure you unmounting /Volume/MobileBackups does not fix the issue (I know, I did).


  1. LiewCF says:

    I forced myself to use trackpad with “natural” scroll direction. After 48 hours, I feel natural. Just “imagine” it as you are scrolling on a touchscreen tablet. :)

    • colincharles says:


      The only problem with that is I interchange with Linux systems quite often and it wouldn’t be very natural for me on those systems… Unless this is at trend all software takes, I’m going to stay away from this new-fangled scroll method