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Option-Click AirPort Menu for Network Details

If you hold down the Option key while clicking the AirPort menu in Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard, you'll see not just the names of nearby Wi-Fi networks, but additional details about the selected network. Details include the MAC address of the network, the channel used by the base station, the signal strength (a negative number; the closer to zero it is, the stronger the signal), and the transmit rate in megabits per second showing actual network throughput. If you hover the cursor over the name of a network to which you're not connected, a little yellow pop-up shows the signal strength and type of encryption.

 
 

Poll Preview: To Go Forward, You Must...

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Poll Preview: To Go Forward, You Must... In this issue, Adam relates the perplexing story of tracking down how to stop a Mac from connecting to remote servers at startup. That was mostly annoying, but more serious system anomalies occur all too often, and they usually come without warning. Are you prepared, especially for situations that would place your important data at risk? The best defense continues to be maintaining regular backups of your data, a topic we've covered extensively (though not recently) in TidBITS. So it's time for a surprise inspection: how old is your most recent backup? Today? Last week? Months ago? Or does your idea of backup entail a large truck making beeping noises? Head over to the TidBITS home page and let us know! (This has been a Public Service Poll of TidBITS Electronic Publishing. After you have replied to the poll, you may return to your regularly scheduled workload, already in progress.) [JLC]

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