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Tag: launchd

How to keep Homebrew and XQuartz updated automatically

If you use Homebrew (and you should), eventually you may need to install XQuartz, "open-source effort to develop a version of the X.Org X Window System that runs on OS X. Together with supporting libraries and applications, it forms the that Apple has shipped with OS X since version 10.5."...

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Terminally Geeky Time Tracking via Screenshots

A few weeks ago I shared this on Twitter: "Here's an eye-opener: a @keyboardmaestro macro which takes a screenshot every 30 seconds. Review at the end of the day to see where it went." Since then, several people have asked me to share my setup (and a few said it terrified them). It took me a while t...

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Terminally Geeky: How to tell if a script is being called from launchd

Warning: command line geekiness ahead. When writing shell scripts, I often send interactive output to the user via echo to give feedback or information. But if the shell script is called on a schedule via OS X's behind-the-scenes process launcher launchd, rather than from a Terminal session, ch...

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Finding Dropbox 'conflicted copy' files automatically

Dropbox is a great tool, but if you use it on more than one computer, you are bound to find conflicted copies eventually. A conflicted copy is created when the same file is edited on two different computers at the same time, or close enough that Dropbox cannot tell which one is the newest. The ...

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Lingon and launchd can keep crucial apps always running

Two years ago I wrote about a shell script that I used with cron to keep 'critical' applications running. Some of the commenters suggested that I "should" be using launchd. There are times when I still prefer cron over launchd but there are two reasons why I have started using launchd more often....

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Terminally Geeky: use automatic login more securely

Imagine if you rebooted your computer, and it automatically logged you in, launched all of your login apps, updated your Dropbox folder, MobileMe, email, RSS, Twitter and everything else without you even having to enter your password. That auto-login capability is built into your Mac, and in fact, ...

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Manually schedule Software Update 'the OS X way' with launchd

In response to a Macworld article, TidBits' Chris Pepper elaborated on ways to run Software Update, Apple's means of delivering updates and patches, on your own schedule. Beginning with the fact that Software Update schedules its next update based on the time it's currently being run, setting the ti...

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Automatically restart crashed programs

Over at Macworld Rob Griffiths has a great column on automatically restarting a program after a crash. Although it is much more stable these days, for a while last year Quicksilver was constantly crashing on me and often I wouldn't notice until ??? + space was strangely unavailing. If there's any pr...

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Trigger backups on connect with launchd

The fine folks at have put out an interesting tutorial that walks through setting up launchd and rsync to do automatic backups whenever a specific external drive is mounted. Loyal readers may note that this is similar to the core feature of Martian Lifeboat (which should not be confu...

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