14 Tips for Safari 4 Beta

Apple released a new beta version of Safari yesterday, bringing a whole load of new features, as well as a couple of problems. Here are a few tips to help you get the most out of the new version and solve any teething problems you might have.

1. Download Safari 4 beta
As this is just a beta version, Apple doesn't include it in the automatic Software Update. To get the new version, head over to the Safari 4 beta page on the Apple web site. Bear in mind this will get rid of Safari 3, but there is an uninstaller included if you ever want to revert back.

2. Update your plugins
While most plugins for Safari should be fine with the new version, InputManagers are likely to need updating. 1Password has released an update, but you have to go to the 1Password app in your Applications folder to access it. Go to the Preferences and in the updates section, check the box that says Include Beta versions. Now when you check for updates it should download a version that works with Safari 4. Updates for Glims and Saft are already available from their respective sites, but as far as I know PithHelmet and SafariStand haven't been updated yet.

3. Safari breaks Xcode
This one is mainly for developers. If you are using the 3.0 version of Xcode, you will find that it crashes on launch once you have downloaded the Safari 4 beta. Just head over to the Apple Developer Connection to download version 3.1.2 of Xcode that works fine.

4. New keyboard shortcuts
Now Control-Tab will allow you to cycle through your tabs (as opposed to Command-Tab that cycles through applications). Don't worry if you were used to the old shortcut though, Command-Shift-Arrows still work.

5. Add the zoom button
The new zoom feature works just like Safari on the iPhone. Instead of just increasing the font size, it increases the size of images and other media too. You can access this from the View menu or with the Command-+ and Command-- shortcuts. Alternatively, choose Customize Toolbar from the View menu to add the zoom button to the toolbar.

Zoom Button

6. Restore the old style tabs
One of the biggest changes visually is the new tabs, located along the top of the window. If you aren't a fan of this, a simple Terminal command will move them back to the old position. Just open up Terminal (in Applications/Utilities) and paste in the following line:

defaults write com.apple.Safari DebugSafari4TabBarIsOnTop -bool FALSE

To bring back the new tabs on top, just repeat the command with TRUE at the end. You will need to restart Safari for changes to take effect.

7. Disable search suggestions
Now the Google search box gives suggestions for your search as well as recent searches. To disable this, just use the following Terminal command in the same way as above:

defaults write com.apple.Safari DebugSafari4IncludeGoogleSuggest -bool FALSE

As before, repeat with TRUE at the end to bring back suggestions.

Search Suggestions

8. Bring back the old progress bar
Unfortunately, the new spinning progress indicator doesn't give you a good idea of how far the page has loaded. To bring back the old style, you have to use both of the following commands.

defaults write com.apple.Safari DebugSafari4IncludeToolbarRedesign -bool FALSE

This changes the progress indicator to a blue pie chart. To get the blue bar, now use the following command:

defaults write com.apple.Safari DebugSafari4LoadProgressStyle -bool FALSE

Repeat both commands with TRUE at the end to go back to the new style.

9. Disable bookmarks Cover Flow
If Cover Flow isn't your thing, you can get rid of it in the Bookmarks window by using the following Terminal command:

defaults write com.apple.Safari DebugSafari4IncludeFlowViewInBookmarksView -bool FALSE

Repeat with TRUE at the end to bring back Cover Flow.

10. Disable dimming in Top Sites zoom

When you choose a page in Top Sites, it zooms in to take up the whole page with a neat animation effect. To stop the page dimming during this, use the following Terminal command:

defaults write com.apple.Safari DebugSafari4TopSitesZoomToPageAnimationDimsSnapshot -bool FALSE

Repeat with TRUE at the end to revert back to the original behaviour.

11. Disable Top Sites

If, for some reason, you want to completely disable the Top Sites feature, use the following command:

defaults write com.apple.Safari DebugSafari4IncludeTopSites -bool FALSE

Repeating with TRUE at the end will enable Top Sites again.

12. Disable "fancy" URL suggestions

This is actually one of my favourite new features in Safari 4. When you are typing in a web address, suggestions are separated into Bookmarks, History and a Top Hit. If you prefer the old window, use the following command:

defaults write com.apple.Safari DebugSafari4IncludeFancyURLCompletionList -bool FALSE

Repeat the command with TRUE at the end to enable the fancy completion list again.

13. Add web sites to Top Sites
If you click the Edit button in Top Sites, it is easy to use the pins to force sites to stay in Top Sites. To manually add a site that isn't already there, open it up in a separate window, then drag the favicon (next to the address) over to one of the positions in Top Sites. You can also drag sites from your bookmarks to Top Sites.

14. Fix GrowlMail
Unfortunately GrowlMail will now cause Mail to crash. There is a quick workaround that involves putting GrowlMail into summary mode. Do this by using the following Terminal command:

defaults write com.apple.mail GMSummaryMode -int 2

Supposedly the next version of GrowlMail should fix this problem.

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