• Create BookmarkCreate Bookmark
  • Create Note or TagCreate Note or Tag
  • PrintPrint
Share this Page URL

Chapter 2. Organizing Your Stuff > Aliases: Icons in Two Places at Once

2.5. Aliases: Icons in Two Places at Once

Highlighting an icon and then choosing File→Make Alias (or pressing -L), generates an alias, a specially branded duplicate of the original icon (see Figure 2-7). It's not a duplicate of the file—just of the icon; therefore it requires negligible storage space. When you double-click the alias, the original file opens. Because you can create as many aliases as you want of a single file, aliases let you, in effect, stash that file in many different folder locations simultaneously. Double-click any one of them, and you open the original icon, wherever it may be on your system.

Sidebar 6. Designing Your Own Icons

You don't have to be content with the icons provided by Microsoft, Apple, and whoever else wrote your software. You can paste new icons onto your file, disk, and folder icons to help you pick them out at a glance.

The easiest way to replace an icon is to copy it from another icon. To do so, highlight the icon, choose File→Get Info, click the existing icon in the resulting window, and then choose Edit→Copy. (Close the Info window, if you like.)

Now click the icon to which you want the copied picture transferred. Once again, choose File→Get Info. Click the icon in the dialog box and this time choose Edit→Paste.

If you'd rather introduce all-new icons, you're welcome to steal some of the beautifully designed ones at www.iconfactory.com and the icon sites linked to it. Once you've downloaded these special icon files, you can copy their images from the Get Info window exactly as you would any icon.

To design a Mac OS X icon from scratch, you could, of course, use a graphics program like Photoshop, the painting module of AppleWorks, or shareware like GraphicConverter. (Remember to make your new icons 128 pixels square.) But sooner or later, you'll want to finish up in Iconographer (available at www.missingmanuals.com), which saves the result in the icns format required by Mac OS X.

Once you've saved your icon file, select it, choose File→Get Info, and then copy and paste its icon as described above.

Note that you can't change certain folder icons that Mac OS X considers important, such as Applications or System. (You can, however, change the special Mac OS X folder icons in your Home folder—Pictures, Documents, and so on, and even your hard drive icon.) You're also not allowed to change icons that belong to other people who share this Mac and sign in under a different name (Chapter 11).



Not a subscriber?

Start A Free Trial

  • Creative Edge
  • Create BookmarkCreate Bookmark
  • Create Note or TagCreate Note or Tag
  • PrintPrint