Chapter 2. Folders, Windows & Finder Tabs

These days, the graphic user interface (icons, windows, Trash cans) is standard. MacOS, Windows, Chrome OS, Android, iOS—every operating system is fundamentally the same, and a very long way from the lines of typed commands that defined the earliest computers.

That’s not to say that the graphic interface hasn’t evolved, though; it has. Herewith: a grand tour of the state of the art in computer desktops—the one in Sierra.

Getting into macOS

When you first turn on a Mac running macOS, an Apple logo greets you, soon joined by a skinny progress bar that lets you know how much longer you have to wait.

Logging In

What happens next depends on whether you’re the Mac’s sole proprietor or have to share it with other people in an office, school, or household.

  • If it’s your own Mac, and you’ve already been through the setup process described in Appendix A, no big deal. You arrive at the macOS desktop.

  • If it’s a shared Mac, you may encounter the login screen, shown in Figure 2-1. It’s like a portrait gallery, set against a blurry version of your usual desktop picture. Click your icon.

    If the Mac asks for your password, type it and then click Log In (or press Return). You arrive at the desktop. Or, if your Mac has a Touch Bar (The Complicated Story of the Function Keys) and you’ve registered your fingerprint, then touch that finger to the sensor at the right end of the bar.

    Chapter 13 offers much more on this business of accounts and logging in.


In certain especially ...

Get macOS Sierra: The Missing Manual now with O’Reilly online learning.

O’Reilly members experience live online training, plus books, videos, and digital content from 200+ publishers.