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It's Nice to See Things

Introducing Undercover.


It's nice to see things. Even with the ACP there are certain things that won't be visible in Apple's OS X shell. And for ordinary punters the issues multiply rapidly.

Unix has only one way of hiding a file - and it's not really a matter of hiding it anyway. It's just that the file won't often be listed. This method is of course putting a dot ('.') in front of the file name.

But OS X has two ways of really hiding files - and they're not so easy to deal with.

  1. .hidden. A file containing names of files to be hidden.
  2. kIsInvisible. An archaic HFS flag still recognised by the OS X shell.

Perhaps the most infamous example of something on OS X being hidden against user wishes is the iPod_Control directory on the iPod hard drive - it's kept hidden to make it more difficult for you to copy your song collection back to your hard drive.

Use 'File - Open' from the menu, drop a directory on Undercover's dock icon, or drop a directory on an Undercover window. Undercover will perform a 'shallow' search (only one hierarchical level). Files normally visible are listed on the right ('uncovered'); files hidden are listed on the left ('covered').

You can move items either from the 'covered' pane or the 'uncovered' pane.

  • Select the items you wish to uncover in the left pane and choose Uncover from the menu (⌘→). Undercover will uncover them and review your directory again.
  • Alternately, select the items you wish to cover in the right pane and choose Cover from the menu (⌘←). Undercover will cover them and review your directory again.

Freeing Your Pod

  1. Mount your pod as always.
  2. Navigate to it in your Finder.
  3. Drop its directory on Undercover.
  4. Select iPod_Control and hit ⌘→.

See how nice it is to see things.

See Also
iPod Therefore iPay
FileInfo: Control Your Pod
Undercover: It's Nice to See Things

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