apple, mac

Fix for Disk Utility: “File system formatter failed.”

You buy an external hard drive for you Mac. You want to format it for the Mac (Mac OS Extended (journaled)).

So you fire up Disk Utility to reformat. Choose erase, click go, and get “File system formatter failed.” shot back at you.

The problem:
The drive, like most, is set to FAT-32. This means you can’t just erase it because, like a bad ex-roommate, FAT-32 leaves all sorts of gross stuff everywhere.

The Solution:
You need to re-partition the drive. Sound tough? It isn’t.
1) You need to click on the actual drive in the menu on the left
2) Then choose partition from the menu on the top
3) Choose “1 Partition” (assuming that’s what you want)
4) click “apply”

screen shot of disk utility

That’s it. You can rename the drive in Disk Utility, or by clicking on the new drive on the desktop and then hitting return.


Block Ads in Safari

I’ve recently grown frustrated with FireFox. A new “feature” basically ruined my browsing experience. So, I switched from being an occasional Safari user, to a full-time Safari user. I miss two things from FireFox, one is Rikaichan (which gives hovering translations to Japan webpages), and the other is Adblock Plus.

While there doesn’t appear to be any solution to my Japanese woes, that isn’t the case for Ad-block. After a bit of research I discovered Safari AdBlock. It has been very effective in keeping out all those ad that clutter websites— especially the infuriating fancy new animated ones that move all over the screen obscuring text.

I highly recommend it. Just make sure to have the lists auto-update. Oh, and you should also know that you’ll to reinstall it every time you update Safari. Even though the AdBlock tab still showed up in the Safari preferences after the update it wasn’t actually there.


Remove the Arrows in iTunes

terminal application
There used to be a preference to remove the arrows that linked to the iTunes store. That option disappeared from the preferences in iTunes 8, but you can still reach it through the magic of the terminal. And don’t worry it is easy. Open the Terminal application (look in the applications folder, then the system utilities folder). Then just paste this line into the terminal and hit return:
defaults write show-store-arrow-links -bool FALSE

Want those goofy annoying arrows back? Easy.
defaults write show-store-arrow-links -bool TRUE