The Growl Project has released Growl 2.0, a major update for the system-wide notification utility that brings compatibility with Notification Center in OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion. With this new release, you can set Growl to route all of its notifications through Notification Center (rather than use Growl’s standalone pop-up notifications). However, you’ll still find some apps (including Dropbox) using Growl’s notification system instead of forwarding to Notification Center due to the requirement that developers update their apps to the Growl 2.0 API. The update also adds support for Prowl and Boxcar, two utilities that enable you to receive notifications from your Mac on your iOS device. It also reportedly resolves the high CPU spikes and multiple crashes suffered by the previous version. ($3.99 new from the Mac App Store, free upgrade from previous Mac App Store versions, 6.1 MB)
Improve Apple Services with AirPort Base Stations
You can make iChat file transfers, iDisk, and Back to My Mac work better by turning on a setting with Apple AirPort base stations released starting in 2003. Launch AirPort Utility, select your base station, click Manual Setup, choose the Internet view, and click the NAT tab. Check the Enable NAT Port Mapping Protocol (NAT-PMP) box, and click Update. NAT-PMP lets your Mac OS X computer give Apple information to connect back into a network that's otherwise unreachable from the rest of the Internet. This speeds updates and makes connections work better for services run by Apple.