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Stormchild reviewed on 26 Mar 2014
Finally, a way to dim my MacBook Air below the lowest brightness setting (without screwing up all the colors like f.lux does). I've been trying to find something like this forever. Most of the other ones are old and broken. This one actually works, and works well.
[Version 1.0.3]

Stormchild commented on 25 Jan 2014
This is great, when it works, but it's gotten really buggy lately. Rearranging icons is quite difficult; they flicker back and forth and often don't stay where you put them.

Hope all the wrinkles are ironed out soon. I have tons of menubar doodads and this is really the only way to manage them (other than just turning most of them off and accepting the fact that you can't rearrange most 3rd party menus).
[Version 1.2.11]

1 Reply


Stormchild replied on 26 Jan 2014
Follow-up: on my other Mac, I'm able to move my icons around without any of the problems I described above. It could be the graphics card, or it might be because I'm running dual displays.

The glitchy one:
MacBook Pro (late 2008)
GeForce 9600M (256 MB)
External 1920x1080 display

The one that works fine:
MacBook Air (mid 2012)
Intel HD Graphics 4000
No external monitor

Perhaps I'll give it a whirl next time my newer Mac is connected to an external display and see what happens then.
Stormchild commented on 23 Oct 2013
Despite the claim of Mavericks compatibility, LaunchBar 5.6 still has a couple of issues with the new OS. Specifically, when "Displays have separate Spaces" is enabled (which it is by default)…

- When a full screen app is active, opening something with LaunchBar causes the display with the full screen app to switch to another space, for no apparent reason (even when launching an app that exists only on the other display). This really wrecks the workflow of having full screen apps exist in their own independent space.

- LaunchBar always appears on the "main" display, even when both displays have a menubar and the other display has the active menubar. It should follow the active menubar. Even summoning the Dock to the other display has no effect on LaunchBar. Kind of defeats the purpose of having a menubar on both monitors if LaunchBar remains stuck to a specific screen.

Looks like not much testing was done on multiple monitor setups. Not exactly dealbreakers, but both of these issues have spoiled the multiple monitor support in Mavericks, which was the #1 reason I upgraded. For now I've had to revert to the old behavior where the spaces for each monitor are tied together, which is a bit of a bummer.
[Version 5.6]

1 Reply


Stormchild replied on 23 Oct 2013
Indeed! These guys are amazing. I don't have a second display to test with at the moment, but hopefully everything is sorted out now.
Stormchild commented on 23 Oct 2013
Works in Mavericks…sort of. I can't rearrange the icons anymore (attempting to command-drag an icon causes all the adjacent ones to freak out; sometimes after the dust settles, the one I dragged does move, but it's pretty much random and unusable).

Switching to another user causes the Bartender bar to appear halfway off the left edge of the screen, and at that point it can no longer be moved until I quit and restart the app.

When a second display is connected and the new "Displays have separate Spaces" setting is enabled, one of the two displays has an odd gap in the menubar icons. If I click the gap, it disappears, but then it reappears in the same place on the other menubar.

Looks like Bartender has some 10.9 bugs that still need to be worked out.
[Version 1.2.9]


Stormchild reviewed on 12 Aug 2013
I've been using this on the trial for a couple weeks now. Also tried MacProxy and ProxyCap, each of which has its strengths, but I ended up settling on Proxifier because of the following features:

Most powerful rules. It's the only one that lets you specify multiple hostnames in a single rule. As an example, in order to enable iCloud at work, I have to redirect *, *, and * through the proxy. You could just create multiple rules in the other apps, but I prefer having them grouped together.

Rule sets. Proxifier lets you save and easily switch between sets of rules. ProxyCap will save and load rules, but not in a convenient way, and MacProxy doesn't have rule sets at all. If you need to set up different rules for different networks, this is indispensable.

No need to restart after installing, and unlike the other two, it doesn't have a process that runs in the background when you're not using it. It's just a standalone app that only needs to be open when you're actually using it.

I docked a couple points for Ease of Use for two reasons:

- Doesn't manage SSH tunnels. You have to go start your tunnel manually every time, restart it if it gets interrupted, and close it when you're done with it. It's not hard to do, but it would still be much nicer if all I had to do is open this app and let it take care of everything.

- Crummy interface. The UI is ugly and un-Mac-like, but more importantly, it's weird and confusing. The main window toolbar has links to the config panels (each of which opens the config window and goes directly to a specific page). The config window has an almost identical toolbar, but in this context, the exact same buttons switch between views in the same window.

For some reason, the Rules window is non-resizable, which is just plain silly. Once you've got 8 rules, they can no longer fit within the window. The order of rules matters, so sometimes you need to move them up and down, but drag & drop isn't supported, so you have to use crummy up/down arrows. It's like using a primitive web UI from 10 years ago.

Editing a proxy or rule opens yet another window, and this one is modal, so it blocks the rest of the UI until you close it.

The app's "Preferences" menu item just opens the same configuration window. The "DNS" and "Advanced" sections are preferences, but the "Proxies" and "Rules" sections are not, and it's all mixed together, as the developer doesn't seem to understand the difference.

In short, the UI is just not very well designed, and needs a lot of work to make it friendlier.

I would probably not recommend this to non-tech-savvy friends, but for those of who are comfortable using the command line and working with SSH, this is definitely the most powerful app of its kind.
[Version 2.11.2]


Stormchild reviewed on 27 Jul 2013
LaunchBar is my quick launcher of choice (has been for over ten years), but Butler has proven to be a worthy companion. I don't use the abbreviation or search features at all, but there are a number of other features I find really valuable (which no other app seems to provide). Here are a few of the things I use it for:

- I've set up hotkeys (F1-F6) that open pop-up menus in the Finder, letting me quickly get to a specific file or folder. If I hold command and hit the same key, it opens the folder directly instead of the pop-up menu.

- Shortcuts for rating the current song in iTunes. Shift + [numpad 0-5]. Butler is one of the only apps that can actually distinguish between the regular number keys and the number pad. Obviously shift + regular number wouldn't work, as I'd lose access to a bunch of symbols.

- Other iTunes hotkeys: play/pause, next track, previous track. I used to have these in the menubar as well (I think that was even the original reason I started using Butler), but I have a menubar doodad problem, so I don't have space for those anymore.

- Hotkeys for menus in apps where custom shortcuts often don't work. There are a number of situations where custom hotkeys set up in System Preferences → Keyboard Shortcuts don't work until the menu has been opened at least once. Needless to say, this is an unacceptable hassle. What I do now is set up the hotkey I want in Butler, and just have Butler type the default hotkey for me. Works every time.

The other thing this works well for is menu commands whose name changes. For example, instead of setting up two identical shortcuts for iTunes' "Switch to MiniPlayer" and "Switch from MiniPlayer" commands in System Preferences, I can just set up *one* hotkey in Butler, and don't even have to bother typing the command name at all.

Also has the advantage of leaving the original shortcuts intact, which is helpful if someone else is using your Mac.

Finally, because you can specify multiple apps for a hotkey, you can set up shortcuts that work in multiple apps. I've got a "Toggle Web Inspector" hotkey that types cmd-shift-i in Safari, WebKit, Chrome, and Firefox, and it does the right thing in all of them.


Anyway, my point is that Butler does a lot of things really well, and if you explore its features, you can probably find a bunch of uses for it, even if you aren't using it as a quick search/launcher.
[Version 4.1.15]


Stormchild reviewed on 09 Jul 2013
I wanted to give this another shot to see how it's shaping up after a few updates. Unfortunately it's still completely terrible.

It's unbelievable that SFTP via SSH key *still* doesn't work in 2.0.9. The *exact* same server/config works in Transmit (and every other app). Entering a password is futile, as it sees I have a key in ~/.ssh and insists on using that instead (even though it's incapable of doing so). I'm obviously not going to delete my SSH config just because this app is still so fundamentally broken, but that leaves me with no way to connect to any of my sites. Not interested in any other convoluted workarounds either. If they aren't competent enough to make it work properly, I'm just not interested.

Same old story as back in 2.0. And my SFTP connections all work perfectly fine in Transmit, with the same config and key. How is it that the same company can't manage to get exactly the same feature working in another app, even after 9 updates over more than a year?

It's too bad, really. Panic has obviously put so much love into this, but the whole thing is undermined by essential features they just can't seem to get working properly.
[Version 2.0.9]

Stormchild commented on 23 Jun 2013
This "utility" is built upon a fundamental misunderstanding of why the Trash exists in the first place. Automatically emptying the Trash at regular intervals without any user involvement defeats the entire purpose of the Trash. All this really does is take away the ability to recover a file you might have deleted accidentally,
[Version 2.0.1]


Stormchild reviewed on 18 Jun 2013
SourceTree is pretty solid GUI for Mercurial & Git. If you *only* use Git, you might want to take a look at Tower, but I use Hg at work, so I needed something that could do both.

Functionally speaking, this works pretty well. The diff pane is quite useful. I generally review all my changes in there before doing commits; it's a great way to ensure I didn't forget anything in my dev notes, and it helps me decide what the commit summary should focus on. As expected, you can configure it to use whatever external tools you want for diffing and conflict resolution. (Oddly enough, despite all the apps competing in this space, I still find Apple FileMerge is the best one. Kaleidoscope is beautiful, but because it still can't ignore whitespace changes, it's basically useless.)

What I don't love about this app is the crummy GUI. I don't care if it's pretty; that's not the issue (I actually really like the app icon; everything else is…meh, but whatever). It's just very poorly designed. Every repo opens in its own window. There's no single-window mode that lists your repos in a sidebar (in fact, your repos are listed in yet another, ill-conceived "Bookmarks" window that you have to leave floating around if you want to see an overview, as you simply can't get any of that information anywhere else in the app). I really dislike having to cycle through a big stack of large windows, especially with that awful Bookmarks window being one of them.

Each of these repo windows has to be manually customized to get the sidebar/pane widths and other view settings the way you want, and to make matters worse, it doesn't even remember them reliably. All of the window adjustments you make are routinely forgotten when you close/re-open the app. Sometimes it's just comically bad, e.g. for no apparent reason, the sidebar in one of the windows will have resized itself to fill 90% of the window, and everything else is completely screwed up and has to be dragged back where you wanted it, all over again. This sort of stuff just drives me nuts.

Lastly, there's the sync feature that's supposed to watch for file/repo changes and indicate when you've got unsaved changes, and any pending incoming/outgoing commits. For me, none of that stuff ever updates until I switch to the app and start interacting with one of the windows. At that point, it usually noticed which files have been modified, but it's not smart enough to recognize that I've already pulled or pushed anything until I click the sync button. Supposedly it should do all this automatically, but for me it never has. (I do a lot of these things outside of the app, on the command line, which I prefer for anything that doesn't really need a GUI.) This is something MacHg (RIP) did very well.

For the price, I really can't complain too much about this app. It does get the job done, and that's the most important thing, but it manages to annoy me quite often in the process, and I would very happily pay for something better if one of the nicer apps like Tower actually supported Mercurial.

In the meantime, anyone who needs to work with both Hg and Git should check this out.
[Version 1.6.1]

Stormchild commented on 18 Jun 2013
For anyone looking for a replacement Hg app, try SourceTree. I switched over a couple months ago and it's working out pretty well so far. It's a little rough and unpolished, but it does the job.
[Version 0.9.22]

Stormchild had trouble on 22 Jul 2011
4.4.3 works correctly in Lion, with the exception of any apps that are now "sandboxed" (find out which ones are by enabling the Sandboxed column in Activity Monitor), because those apps don't present their own open/save dialogs. Another process handles that on behalf of the app (it's a system security measure).

There's probably a way to work around it, but I don't know the details.
[Version 4.4.2]

Stormchild had trouble on 08 Dec 2010
Just ran into a weird issue with Hugin 2010.2. It turns out if you're loading images that have a single quote anywhere in their path, control point detection will always fail, no matter which detector or what settings. Something is not being escaped properly.

E.g., if you're loading images stored in:
/Users/you/Desktop/Friend's Birthday/…

When you click (Align), you'll get errors in the little console window that pops up while control point detection is happening. Unhelpfully, this window appears and disappears so quickly, you can't even read the details. It would be nice if those errors could be written to a log file or something. Very frustrating having the console window immediately vanish when you're trying to see WHAT the damn problem is.

Anyway, just make sure you don't have any single quotes in the path of any images you're loading.
[Version 2010.2.0]

Stormchild had trouble on 23 Oct 2010
Manually-added filters are no longer working (in Safari 5.0.2).

Stormchild had trouble on 23 Oct 2010
Manually-added filters are no longer working (in Safari 5.0.2).

Stormchild had trouble on 11 May 2009
Still no fix for crash-on-quit behavior? This has been happening since the very first time I installed Plex, many versions ago. I've deleted the preferences and started fresh, but nothing helps. I have literally never seen this program exit cleanly. It has crashed 100% of the time when I've tried to quit, from day one. This was on a brand new MacBook Pro bought less than two months ago, and this behavior was happening within the first two days I had the new machine, before I had even installed or used much of anything else on it.

Bottom line: Plex is just not very well made software. I really wish it would work reliably, as it's a nice idea and clearly better than what Front Row has devolved into, but so far it just hasn't been worth the trouble.
[Version 0.8]

Stormchild had trouble on 30 Dec 2008
Anyone else having problems getting "Boss Mode" to work? The built-in help says to hit Command-E, but that doesn't do anything for me, and there's no menu item for it.

Not that I really care or anything. Just wanted to see what it looks like.
[Version 2.4.6]

Stormchild had trouble on 26 Sep 2008
Current version still doesn't reliably release files when removed from the list. I frequently have problems moving files, or deleting unwanted files, after torrents have been completed and removed from Transmission.

Would be nice if the Transmission developers could figure out how to close a file handle properly. This should have been fixed many releases ago.
[Version 1.34]

Stormchild had trouble on 06 Feb 2007
Hotkeys are broken in 3.0.3. I used to have F1 through F8 set as hotkeys to open my favorite folders, and these no longer work. It was broken in the 3.0.3 betas, so I reverted to 3.0.2, thinking it was a bug, but now the final 3.0.3 release is out and the feature is still broken. I don't know whether other hotkeys are still valid (and don't care, as I'm not willing to change the hotkeys I've been using for several years), but F keys definitely don't work anymore. It still accepts them in the "Set Hotkey" dialog sheet, but they don't appear in the hotkey column of the favorites list.

I've emailed St. Clair support about it; hopefully we'll see a fix for it soon. I'm surprised none of the beta testers noticed this; I should have filed a bug report about it when I encountered it before, but was busy and just wanted to get it working again, so I simply reverted to 3.0.2.
[Version 3.0.3]

Stormchild had trouble on 05 Feb 2007
Hoping to use this with my new MX Revolution, since LCC doesn't work at all. But so far this isn't working either. USB Overdrive doesn't recognize my Logitech mouse. I definitely removed every single file installed by LCC and have rebooted at least twice since then. No dice.
[Version 10.4.5]

Stormchild had trouble on 05 Feb 2007
Can't get the software to work. I bought an MX Revolution today, downloaded LCC 2.1.3, and installed it. The mouse worked immediately after I plugged in the USB dongle (before installing any software), and the tracking seems to be smooth.

The software, on the other hand, doesn't work at all. The LCC preference pane is there, but says the same thing everyone else has been complaining about: "No Logitech device found."

I've repeatedly installed, uninstalled and reinstalled 2.1.3, 2.1.1, and 2.1.0, and they all produce that same result. I also tried manually uninstalling it by removing each file mentioned in the readme (thinking that perhaps the uninstaller works about as well as the rest of the software). I'm now fed up and tired of rebooting, and going to try USB Overdrive instead.

The mouse itself is solid, feels and works beautifully. Logitech makes great hardware, but really should fire all of its Mac developers (if it even has dedicated ones) and just hire Alessandro Montalcini (USB Overdrive author, on which Microsoft Intellipoint is based). Oh, and do something about that fugly logo. Did someone's five year old daughter draw that in school? Seriously.
[Version 2.1.3]

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