How to set up your new MacBook

CNET's Sharon Vaknin gives you the details about how to set up your new MacBook.

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Because Apple computers are so intuitive, you may be overlooking some simple but helpful settings. A few tweaks to your security settings, dock, Finder, and keyboard are really all it takes to make your MacBook even easier to use than it already is.

If you're a first-time MacBook owner, this how-to will introduce you to your computer's security settings and help you enable a few of your Mac's most useful features.

So before you say, "Hey, there's no right-click on MacBooks?!" walk through the following tips:

Rev up security settings. Go to System Preferences > Accounts > Login Options. Disable automatic log-in so that a password will be required on start-up or wake-up. Back at System Preferences, head to Security and check "Log out after" your desired duration of inactivity.

Customize the dock. Right-click the divider line and select Position on screen > Left. To remove unused applications, right-click the program and select Remove from Dock. Add folders or drives by dragging them to the dock. Tip: Right-clicking an open application on the dock will give you access to options, like switching playlists or repeating a song in iTunes.

Tweak the Finder. Add shortcuts to the sidebar by dragging folders like Documents, Pictures, or your Drop Box. Individual files can also be added. To customize the Finder toolbar, right-click it and select Customize Toolbar. Drag and drop buttons for easier navigation.

Activate hot corners. Go to System Preferences > Expose and Spaces > Expose. Use the drop-down menus to select actions for mousing over corners of your screen.

Enable right-click and tab. To switch on right-click, head to System Preferences > Trackpad and check "Secondary click" under the One Finger options. To use the Tab key to navigate in areas like dialog boxes and forms, go to System Preferences > Keyboard and Mouse > Keyboard Shortcuts and select the radio button next to "All Controls" (at the bottom).

About the author

Sharon Profis is a CNET How To expert who cooks up DIY projects, in-depth guides, and little-known tricks that help you get the most out of your tech. During her four years at CNET, she's covered social media, funky gadgets, and has shared her tech knowledge on CBS and other news outlets.

 

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