My First Mac Archive

This article was first published on 2008-04-03. Due to the age of this article, it is included here for archive purposes only.

Welcome to My First Mac’s Q&A column. It is said that Macs are easier to use, but they are still complex in their own right. Here are a few questions we have received lately from readers like you. Sometimes we reformat the questions for clarity and presentation.

This week we have questions about transferring protected WMA files, finding iPhoto files and using Favorites on the Mac.

We apologize for the time between Q&As. MFM is actively looking for a new Q&A columnist, so contact us if you are interested!

  Where can I find the file where iPhoto keeps all the imported photos?

iPhoto stores your photos as well as the database that organizes them in the iPhoto Library. You can find the Library in your Pictures folder under your user name. The problem is that iPhoto’s library is complex to the point where you shouldn’t mess with it. In fact, in iPhoto ’08, Apple made the library appear impenetrable by making it a Package. You can still see what’s inside the Package by right clicking it and selecting "Show Package Contents".

My suggestion is to avoid messing with the library and see if you can accomplish your goal from within iPhoto. For instance, I’ve been asked how to pull out some photos to email via Yahoo Mail or play with in another application. Just go ahead and drag the photos out of the iPhoto window and copies will be made where ever you drag them to.

Additionally, if you just want to view a small group by the date or some other criteria, use the search field at the bottom of the window frame.


How do I transfer protected WMA files to iTunes?


Sorry, there is no easy step to transfer protected files. Your best bet is burning the songs you want to an audio CD and then importing them to iTunes like a normal audio CD. The downside to this approach is that the metadata that includes things like song title and artist will be lost in the process and you’ll have to re-enter that info by hand.

The good news is that 2008 will likely be the year that DRM (what protects the files) will be dropped from all major online retailers like iTunes and Napster. It can’t come soon enough.

  In windows I had set up a "favorites" list of the websites I wanted to visit regularly. How do I do this in Mac?

In Safari on the Mac, these favorites are called Bookmarks. You interact with them in the same manner. There are various ways to organize them using folders and buttons. Make sure you turn on Tabs in your Safari preferences to really take advantage of them. You should be able to export your favorites to a file you can transfer to your Mac and import them back into Safari. Give it a try!


You can send in your questions via the Contact page or email us at editor[AT]myfirstmac[DOT]com. Because of the volume of email we receive, we can’t reply to each and every question personally. We read each question that comes in and reply to the ones that fit the scope of this column. We also save some questions for future columns.

If you need your specific question answered right away, try asking it in the Comments section of a related article.