New Apple computer set up

Note: I've had these notes sitting round for a few months, but they are a good starting place for anyone setting up a new Apple computer

I'm setting up a new work machine and thought I would note down what my steps are, what apps I deem worthy and any other notes.

As a preface - this is a new work Mac, so some apps might be different

  1. Update the OS - Before I do anything I check for OS updates. Nothing worse than getting your machine set up and ready to go only to find a 2 hour update is needed
  2. Uninstall apps - One of the first apps I download is AppCleaner. I then wipe anything I won't need - iMovie, Garageband etc
  3. Clear the task bar - I remove all the icons from the task bar so I can start fresh
  4. Preference changes - There are a few preferences I change for the desktop & Task bar
    • Change the minimise effect to scale
    • Remove recent applications from the dock
    • Under Desktop and Screen Saver I set up a hot corner (bottom left, if you must know) to show the desktop
  5. Install Apps
    • Utilities
      • 1Password - I make this the first one as it means I can get into everything else
      • TickTick - My to-do list
      • Paste - the best clipboard manager I've found
      • Rectangle - Excellent window management app with shortcuts
      • Hyperkey - Adds a complete new realm of keyboard shortcut possibilities
    • Development
      • Chrome - Yes, i'm one of those people
      • Firefox
      • iTerm2 - a much better terminal than the built in OSX one, this is my day to day
      • Hyper - have this installed as my "screen sharing" terminal
    • Other
      • Airmail - I started using this when "Mail" was awful and I've not looked back
      • Reeder - Great looking and easy-using RSS reader
      • Spotify
      • Slack - of course...
  6. Add space to Dock - I like to separate my app types with spaces in the dock. Running the following adds a "spacer" app that can be dragged around and "Kept in dock" - defaults write com.apple.dock persistent-apps -array-add '{"tile-type"="spacer-tile";}'; killall Dock

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Mike Street

Written by Mike Street

Mike is a front-end developer from Brighton, UK. He spends his time writing, cycling and coding. You can find Mike on Twitter.