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Yes, I’ve bought the MacHeist nanoBundle! And the sweetest part is I’ve got the company paid it for me 😀
The company is willing to pay this for me because I told them that I need RapidWeaver to build the website but my post there is actually the “secretary”. Or to be more precise, I am the “part-time secretary”. However, it is also my job to maintain, update and build websites. Of course, I don’t build “pro” websites but still… a website is a website LOL

[UPDATE: THIS DOES NOT WORK ANYMORE. However, Hans, one of the commenters below, has found a workaround:

Ok, there is a workaround for the issue I have described above.

You have to follow the relevant steps on the hard road here:


1. creat a standard Workflow *not* an iCal event
2. save it as app and remember it’s location
3. crate a new event in iCal and select as notification the app you have just created via automator

So you have all the time you need.

Hope this helps! And if you have other ways to make things easier, please feel free to leave a comment below.]


As OS X updates over time, some functions don’t work the same anymore. Some commenters have provided solutions in the comment section. Make sure you check them out if things don’t happen the way as described in the post.
Found an easier way to schedule mail on Mac to send it later at a specific time I want by using Automator iCal Alarm.

When you open Automator, it immediately asks you to choose what you’re trying to build:

Building an iCal Alarm will automatically set a new event in iCal with the alarm action set to be whatever you design in the Automator.

So I want to send an email at maybe 9am tomorrow morning, I can open Automator and build an iCal Alarm like this:

  1. Get Specified Finder Items
  2. New Mail Message (type your mail here – leave recipient blank if you’re sending group mail and add the two extra steps below)
  3. Send Outgoing Messages
  4. Save

You may skip step 1 if there’s NO attachment. You can also send group mail (with/without individual salutation) at a later time by adding these steps between steps 2 & 3 above:

  1. Find Address Book Items (find Groups)
  2. Group Mailer (check “add greetings" for individual salutation)

Then in iCal, you’ll see a new event set at the time you hit “save":

Then edit the date and time of the event and the alarm time to whenever you need it.


However, from experience, attachment doesn’t work for Group Mailer. So, if you wish to send a mail with attachment to a big bunch of people, stick to the 4-step solution. The only drawback is it can’t take group name as recipient, i.e., all email addresses are disclosed. If you wish to keep mailing list confidential, you’ll need to add your group to Bcc list.

You may also set the alarm to be repeated periodically and have the same mail sent to the same recipient(s), say, every month. This would be really handy to someone who needs to send out reminders periodically.

I’m still working on getting Apple Mail to send all drafts at once so that I can incorporate Serial Mail and Apple Mail and Automator. The problem is Apple Mail seems to be incapable of sending more than one mail at the same time. It can send 100+ emails consecutively very quickly (like really immediately one after an other) but just not when you “select all" in drafts box then hit “send" in file menu (or shift+command+D).

(I found an easier way… see this post)

I wanted to send groups mails with individual salutation at a scheduled date and time. There’re several free scripts / apps out there to do this. I’ve tried probably all of them but none really worked (I’m running on Snow Leopard).

There’re paid apps to do this but then I don’t wanna pay. (Yes, I proudly admit I’m cheap in this sense.)

Ok, if I only wanted the individual salutation part, Serial Mail is a good one and it’s free. It doesn’t only support names as placeholders but also other fields in the Address Book. It’s also got an iPhone app! One very good news for iPhone user as the built in mail app in iPhone doesn’t support group mail.

So… what to do?

After many trials and errors, my final solution is “Automator + iCal".

There’s this built-in app in Mac called “Automator". Honestly, I didn’t have a clue what it is for the first two or three years I switched to Mac. I don’t use it that frequently until very recently. Anyway, to the steps:

To send GROUP EMAILS WITH INDIVIDUAL SALUTATION with Automator immediately:

  1. Launch Automator: New workflow
  2. Mail: New Mail Message (add by drag and drop) – For group mail, leave “To:", “Cc:" and “Bcc:" blank. Do fill in the Subject line, write your mail in “Message", choose account if you have multiple accounts set up. NO ATTACHMENT. If you want individual salutation, don’t write “Dear xxx" at the beginning of your mail.)
  3. Contacts: Find Address Book Groups – Find people / groups and define it
  4. Mail: Group Mailer – check “Add Greeting" if you want to have individual salutation. Otherwise, uncheck it.)
  5. Mail: Send Outgoing Messages

If you want to send your mails immediately, click “Run" on the top right corner. But if you want to send your group mail later at a specific date and time… go on with the following steps:

  1. Save as application (remember where you’ve saved it. You’ll need its path soon.)
  2. Open iCal and set up a new event at the time you want you mail to be sent
  3. Set alarm -> open file -> choose the application you’ve just saved two steps ago
  4. Done

If you don’t want the new event to stick in your calendar, add the following steps after step 5:

  1. Find iCal Events (Find events, All of the following are true, Title is “title of your new event"…)
  2. Delete iCal Events

But it’s probably easier to just delete it from calendar afterwards 😛

What about if you just want to SCHEDULE ONE SINGLE EMAIL?

  1. Launch Automator: New workflow
  2. Mail: New Mail Message (add by drag and drop) – Type your recipients’ email address in “To:", “Cc:" and “Bcc:" as needed. No auto-fill here. You may click the vCard icon on the right to choose recipients from Address Book. Before hitting “Done", remember to hit “To" after choosing. Do fill in the Subject line or it’ll ., Write your mail in “Message", choose account if you have multiple accounts set up. NO ATTACHMENT.)
  3. Send Outgoing Messages
  4. Save as application (remember where you’ve saved it. You’ll need its path soon.)
  5. Open iCal and set up a new event at the time you want you mail to be sent
  6. Set alarm -> open file -> choose the application you’ve just saved two steps ago
  7. Done

Important notes:

* It’s VERY IMPORTANT to save your workflow as APPLICATION in scheduled email. If you save it as workflow, it’ll only call out the workflow without running it, which means… it won’t do anything.

* NO ATTACHMENT: Someone said here that we may add attachment to group mailer in Automator but it never worked for me. And even if it works, it won’t work with scheduled mail anyways – it requires manual input when mails are being generated. My workaround is to upload the file to a server / website, then paste the link in the mail body. The “New Mail Message" in Automator does recognize URL so if your recipients can see HTML mail, they should be able to just click and see your file.

[UPDATE: NOT on LION either.]

I wrote last year that we can use e-tax on Mac with Firefox 2. Just an update: NOT ANYMORE IF you’re using  SNOW LEOPARD!

Right, you heard me… NOT ON SNOW LEOPARD.

I got to say that I haven’t tried it for a couple months (who’d keep trying out e-tax everyday?). Anyway, I tried to access e-tax after getting an email from IRD and I’d already installed Snow Leopard already but still kept my Firefox 2. So I accessed it with Firefox 2 but it either failed to open the login page or it crashed as I clicked the login button.

I called IRD and this lady gave me the following advice:

It’s better to use hardcopy.

Got it! I’m switching to hardcopy. All you need to do is to write a letter stating clearly your identity card number and request for cancellation of e-tax account plus switching to hardcopy from now on. The letter should be sent to…

Inland Revenue Tower

5 Gloucester Road, Waichai

Hong Kong

Attn.: Taxation Officer

Everyone who’s using Mac and has no access to PC… switch to hardcopy. I know it’s not environmental friendly but… face the reality: our freaking stupid government is doing nothing to protect the environment. Donald thought he is promoting energy saving bulb but in the end of the day, all our government thinks of or cares about is making money… no matter how.

Snow Leopard runs fast and seems too fast for some others to catch up, like HP.

I upgraded my iMac (bought in late 2006) to Snow Leopard. At first, I experienced some problems but everything has been going well after I clean installed it again.

I upgrade my mom’s Macbook to Snow Leopard as well. She first complained about Chinese input. Both of us used to use Open Vanilla for Chinese input. It worked really fine before upgrade but somehow, the “delete" became “(" after upgrade. I searched through the preference and system and such but couldn’t find a solution. Went to forums and found we’re certainly not the only two on the planet and no one has a solution for it. Then I installed Yahoo! Keykey for my iMac and tested it, proved it to be good and installed it on my mom’s Macbook.

So, one problem down. But she also experienced the beach ball problem like I did, so I also clean installed Snow Leopard on her Macbook again.

Problem #2 down. Then she brought the Macbook back to work.

Then came problem #3: where’s the network printer? The first day there’s simply no printer show up in network. Took the IT guy in office a lot of time to make it show up on list. But after it shows up, the Macbook still couldn’t make it print. It’s always busy, somehow, even though no one in the network is printing anything with it.

So mom took it back and asked me to fix it. (No, I’m not employed by Apple but I’m now very often the Mac help desk person among my friends.) It turned out HP hasn’t got all drivers ready for Snow Leopard yet. And even with drivers available now, the network printing problem is not solved yet. Snow Leopard was released on Aug 26. A claimed to be HP person (wisely) started a FAQ thread in Apple forum on Aug 28. Since then, it has now got over 570 replies (40 pages) all of which are complains of not being able to make their HP printer work.

Honestly, I did successfully manage to make my own HP printer at home to work properly. It can print, scan and copy – no problem at all! But it’s connected directly to my iMac through USB.  Since the HP printer at home is not a wireless one, my mom can only print wirelessly at home through my iMac, not sending instructions directly to the printer. This works like a charm at home. Took me like only a second or two to set it up.

But at mom’s office, things are just totally different. Sigh… What to do then?

So, mom asked me to downgrade her Macbook and let it fall back to Leopard. So I backed up with Time Machine, zeroed out the disk, popped in the Leopard install disk… “cannot install OS X on this computer" WHAT?

Then I remember this Macbook came in Leopard, not Tiger. It didn’t require an install disk but it has its own recovery disk (or something like that). But with the hard disk being zeroed out, I couldn’t just press “eject" and eject the Leopard disk already inside the Cd slot. I had to hook it up to my iMac with a Firewire cable and boot it up as target disk, then eject the disk and switch it off … then on again.

Popped in the recovery disk… “cannot install OS X on this computer" WHAT DA …?!

In the end… I told my mom, “Mom, you needa print things? There are two solutions: 1)There’s a spare HP Inkjet in your room. Bring it back to office and connect it to your Macbook via USB; 2)Print your stuffs at home."

I got her Macbook back on Snow Leopard at last… not without some scary moments, like… settings were not migrated after using Migration Assistant; the Macbook turned black when I was looking into Time Machine, even the white light in the front was gone (nearly had a heart attack…again).

But still… I don’t see myself going back to the Windows world. I’ve just seen the Windows 7 in church got BSOD yesterday during service. Yes, DURING SERVICE when it was playing sermon PPT slides, it just went dead and self-reboot AND got BSOD AGAIN during  reboot.  So, no. I’m not going back… especially when I have the iPhone now.

Finally upgrade Tiger to Leopard. The installation process was like this: 

1. insert the installation DVD into the CD/VCD/DVD slot 

2. It auto runs and open a window. then click install Leopard 

3. Click Restart in the pop-up window. 

4. Click “continue" (well, I’m choosing English as the OS language. If I wanted to choose Chinese, I’d have to click “Traditional Chinese" then “continue") 

5. click “continue" (well, I have only one volume on my imac, so nothing to choose. one click is enough) 

6. click “agree" when terms and conditions popped up. 

7. click install 

then wait for about 1-2 hours. I don’t really remember how long it took coz after clicking those 7 clicks (I saw 9 clicks in the guided tour video but…well, gotta admit that I didn’t really count when I was making those clicks), I went talking with my mom, made myself a drink, took a long shower…lost track of time. =P 

And now my 17″ iMac is running Leopard. The upgrade was smooth and nice. All the problems people talked about in forums didn’t happen to me (thank God!). 

My cousin said using Mac is just about vanity. Oh, he’s just envious! Hahaha…. 

I am a Mac Lover. =) 

一月 2021