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Extend Mac OS X's Screenshots

Mac OS X has a variety of built in screenshot methods. Here's a look at a few that offer more versatility than the basic full-screen capture (Command-Shift-3):

• Press Command-Shift-4 and you'll get a crosshair cursor with which you can drag to select and capture a certain area of the screen.

• Press Command-Shift-4-Space to select the entire window that the cursor is over, clicking on the window will then capture it. The resulting screenshot will even get a nice drop shadow.

• Hold down the Space bar after dragging out a selection window to move your selection rectangle around on the screen.

• Hold down Shift after dragging out a selection to constrain the selection in either horizontal or vertical orientation, depending on the direction of your drag.

• Hold down Option after dragging out a selection to expand the selection window around a center point.

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FileVault 2 Hides Data in Plain Sight

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Apple significantly improved how your Mac’s vital data can be protected in Mac OS X 10.7 Lion by taking the FileVault encryption system that covered only user directories and expanding its scope to full-disk encryption. FileVault 2 encrypts the entire contents of your startup disk (the boot partition, that is). When you start up a Mac with FileVault 2 enabled, you’re actually booting from Lion’s Recovery HD partition; when you enter an account’s login name and password (one you previously enabled as being accessible to the FileVault login), the boot process activates the encryption key used to protect the startup partition, and off you go.

I recently wrote at length about using FileVault 2 for Macworld, detailing the risks involved and how to prepare before turning on encryption. I also explained how to encrypt non-boot partitions and drives using Disk Utility and the command line in Terminal.

After I wrote that article, Apple released Mac OS X 10.7.2, which includes iCloud support and the Find My Mac service. With the help of a commenter, I discovered — and documented in a second article at Macworld — that using FileVault 2 in conjunction with a new Guest User account option at startup could trick a laptop thief into connecting to a Wi-Fi network and revealing the Mac’s location. In fact, just powering up the system will do the trick. In short, Apple has crafted a honey pot to lure thieves into Find My Mac’s net.

 

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Comments about FileVault 2 Hides Data in Plain Sight

LCPGUY  2011-11-18 09:55
How much does it slow down your Mac?

So far I've had good luck with protecting my data via encrypted sparse disk images. Shoud I still consider FileVault for my iMac?
Glenn Fleishman  An apple icon for a TidBITS Staffer 2011-11-18 18:02
I've been running it on an Air for several weeks and I can't see any pattern of slowdown. I have not run benchmarks. Encryption is handled entirely through specialized circuitry unlike the old days.