Posts Tagged ‘MacOSX/Apple’

Making your Mac speak from the command line

The xkcd comic I’m an idiot has some context to this (no, I wasn’t locked out or anything).

It seems like one can do wonders within the command line in Mac OS X. For example, to mute the volume, you do: osascript -e "set Volume 0". Similarly, to make the volume the loudest, you can do: osascript -e "set Volume 10".

Then you know, in OS X there is also a magic say(1) command. It converts text to audible speech, and you can even specify the voice. Something as simple as say "Hello World" will use the system voice to execute.

One can imagine this being useful. Now, I know there’s another variation (from a little searching) to changing the volume: doing osascript -e "set volume output volume 100" makes the volume as loud as possible. Note that if you do it this way, it ranges from 0-100. The method two paragraphs ago, is 0-10. Weird?

Error 51: Unable to communicate with the VPN subsystem from VPNClient (fixed)

For work, the good days of using Tunnelblick are over, and I’m now using the Cisco VPNClient.

Today it greeted me with a message:

Error 51: Unable to communicate with the VPN subsystem.
Please make sure that you have at least one network interface that is currently active and has an IP address and start this application again.

The thing is, I already had the wireless going, and it had an IP. Macworld tells me to do:

sudo SystemStarter restart CiscoVPN

You can also do:

sudo /System/Library/StartupItems/CiscoVPN/CiscoVPN restart

They both work. Let’s hope this is not a regular recurrenceannoyance.

Fixing Time Machine: Backup failed with error: 11

Got the dreaded “Backup failed with error: 11” with Time Machine. Actually, I only got the dreaded message from the Console – the application itself, just kept failing silently with no suggestions (Apple, this is your cue to make Time Machine a little more useful). Nothing in Apple’s knowledgebase. Nothing seemingly useful come up in a Google search (i.e. something conclusive)

Solution? Delete:

/Time Machine Backups/Backups.backupdb/nameOfComputer/date.inProgress

It’ll ask for your password, and be gone with the file. Now the backups should start working again.

An example of what the Console showed:

13/08/2008 12:51:57 /System/Library/CoreServices/backupd[4946] Error: (-43) copying /Users/byte/Library/Application Support/Adium 2.0/Users/Default/Logs/AIM.bytebotdotnet to /Volumes/Time Machine Backups/Backups.backupdb/lovegood/2008-08-13-125154.inProgress/424A6617-37A5-4C20-8845-764D9167E317/Macintosh HD/Users/byte/Library/Application Support/Adium 2.0/Users/Default/Logs
13/08/2008 12:51:57 /System/Library/CoreServices/backupd[4946] Copied 702 files (169 KB) from volume Macintosh HD.
13/08/2008 12:51:57 /System/Library/CoreServices/backupd[4946] Copy stage failed with error:11
13/08/2008 12:52:03 /System/Library/CoreServices/backupd[4946] Backup failed with error: 11
13/08/2008 12:55:31[73] (0x10dbd0.Locum[4961]) Exited: Terminated

Migrating Firefox/Thunderbird from Linux to OS X

Today, I completed my migration of my personal machine to one that runs OS X. For those not following Twitter, I picked up a MacBook Air last week, and have slowly been moving my stuff off from the Dell. The Dell can now serve as a full development machine, and I can start running “unstable” Linuxes on it now (“unstable” like Rawhide).

But I digress. This is about how I moved Thunderbird and Firefox over to my new box.

Copy ~/.thunderbird over, and place it in ~/Library/Thunderbird on OS X. Only problem I found was with the Lightning plugin, which managed to grab itself an update, and all was dandy.

Copy ~/.mozilla/firefox over, and place it in ~/Library/Application Support/Firefox. All the plugins I had, just ran fine.

Only snag? I couldn’t find a copy of Firefox 2 online. Good thing I had a copy on another Mac… Why did I need Firefox 2? Google Browser Sync. Though I suspect that in the very near future, I’ll move over to Mozilla Weave, and get all my systems up to speed with Firefox 3.

Next up, lets see how long I run OS X on the Air… or do I replace it with Linux if it annoys me significantly enough?

Snow Leopard to have ZFS

The next release of Mac OS X, Snow Leopard, will have ZFS enabled by default. There’s a good article for the masses, at ZDNet on ZFS on Snow Leopard – do read it.

We all know running any form of server using HFS+ tends to be a bit of a joke. So, Snow Leopard Server will be where ZFS makes its debut. It won’t be long before regular users will want it in their Mac Pro’s and so on…

OS X as a deployment platform for production MySQL servers? This is not far off, I’m sure.

Lazyweb: Editing MP4 .AVI’s on a Mac?

Dear (mac) Lazyweb,

I have MP4 files. DivX encoded, I should presume, because after installing the DivX codecs, I can play them in Quicktime Pro.

I however, cannot import these .AVI MP4 files into iMovie.

Workaround? Use QuickTime Pro to export it to a QuickTime Movie (.MOV), then open it in iMovie, then re-export after “fiddling” with it.

Surely, there must be an easier way? Will Final Cut or something similar help?

What do video bloggers/video podcasters use, for quick and easy (and hopefully, cheap) video editing on Mac OS X?

Any help will be most appreciated. Thanks!