Forwarding Address: OS X

Sunday, August 24, 2003

i've been going through the its-the-end-of-the-summer-so-lets-secure-the-house-network fiasco. my home network is managed by one firewall linux box that has three NICs in it -- one for the outside world, one for my wired network, and one for my wireless network. the wireless network is fully open, but it is firewalled off and cannot see the wired network at all. what i wanted was a vpn solution that would let me log onto the network from my tibook and get an encrypted link into my wired network.

i've been tinkering with openvpn as my vpn solution. it really works well even when both ends obtain their IP addresses from a DHCP server and instead of doing something funky as most vpn inplementations does, this actually sets up a virtual interface tun0 on your box that you can send packets back and forth through. after setting it up on the firewall box, i followed pfisterer's os x instructions and after manging the routing table with the following route command

route add -net

i got all the packets destined for on my tibook to route over tun0 and into my wired network just perfectly. now if only somebody made a nicer interface so i didn't have to do everything using sudo on the command line... free, kick-butt software!

Friday, August 22, 2003

I only use one news aggregator these days, NetNewsWire. Brent Simmons has just released another beta of the 1.0.4 version. This is the pay version of NNW. There is still NetNewsWire Lite which is free.

The number of features that have been packed into this beta is truly astounding. The biggest is probably that NNW has switched over to Web Kit, so all the content encoded feeds render very nicely. Aaron Swartz's htmlDiff has been integrated. It's faster. It has more keyboard shortcuts than you can shake a 17" Powerbook at. It even has gzip support for servers that can send out gzip compressed files.

One of the best things is that development is fairly open. By that I mean that Brent is willing to listen to people and you can see from his release notes where ideas come from and you almost get a feel for how fast they get integrated into NNW.

Update: The final 1.0.4 version (3.0 MB) is out.

Thursday, August 14, 2003

For the most part I've never bothered to pay attention to the Scripts menu in any application that has them. It's been my experience that most of the included AppleScripts tend to simply mimick behaviour easier accomplished through keyboard shortcuts and plain ol' typing. But sometimes, just sometimes, a script comes along that makes the Scripts menu absolutely worthwhile.

BBAutoComplete is just that sort of script. It, as the name suggests, adds look-ahead auto-completion to BBEdit (and a host of other applications I don't use - see for yourself).

After installation I gave it a try by typing: spaceman spacestation
then on the next line I typed
and pressed Cmd-/ (the keyboard shortcut for it). Lo and behold, it completed spacestation. Cmd-/ again and it completed spaceman.


(Via Daring Fireball)

Wednesday, August 13, 2003

A friend of mine from Apple tipped me off to a cheap-and-easy way of improving the performance of, the mailer built into OS X. I've found that every time I send a message, Mail freezes up and the statusbar says, "Adding recipients to Address Book." Turns out that you can really cut down on this delay by forcing your Address Book to compress itself:
  1. Open Address Book
  2. Create 10 or more entries
  3. Delete your new entries
  4. Quit Address Book
For extra speedy goodness, try deleting the ~/Library/Application Support/Address Book/ABPerson.index" file, then opening Address Book and searching for an entry. This will force a rebuild of the Address Book index, too.

I've tried it, and it worked beautifully for me. What's more, it seems to have improved the performance of iSync for synching with PalmOS and iPod. Discuss

Tuesday, August 12, 2003

Remember FaceSpan, the UI-building tool for AppleScript? The public beta of version 4.0, the first to support OS X, comes out in September.