Take Control Books for iOS 13 and macOS Catalina

Apple has released iOS 13, and also announced that version 13.1 will ship next Tuesday (while macOS 10.15 Catalina is still slated for October). We’ve been hard at work updating our books to cover the new operating systems, and today our friends at Take Control books are happy to announce two such titles, both written by Glenn Fleishman.

Last but not least, I wanted to remind you about their three most recent books on Apple’s new operating systems:

Take Control of iOS 13 and iPadOS 13 helps you get the most out of your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, covering all major features of the new operating system. We’ll release version 1.1 of this book next Tuesday as a free update. (Also coming on Tuesday: a free update to Take Control of Notes by Josh Centers.)●Take Control of Upgrading to Catalina is your complete guide to moving your Mac from an older version of macOS to Catalina—safely and easily. A free update to version 1.1 will be available shortly after Catalina ships next month.●Take Control of Catalina tells you everything you need to know about how to use all the major features in Catalina, with special emphasis on what’s new. Once again, a free update will ship right after Catalina does.

Or, buy a bundle of all three new books, and save 40%!

Buy all 3 books (a $42.97 value) for only $25.80

They have dozens of other new and updated books in the works too, about which you’ll be hearing about over the coming weeks and months—along with still more improvements to their website!

Wrangle your calendar and reminders with an updated book by Scholle McFarland

I never cease to be amazed at the amount of power and flexibility hidden beneath the surface of Apple’s built-in apps. We’ve explored many of these (for example, Preview, Apple Mail, Notes, and iTunes) in Take Control books, and it’s always a delight to see readers discover new capabilities they never knew they had.

The Calendar and Reminders apps (found in both macOS and iOS, as well as in a more limited form in watchOS) are no different. They may look simple, but with a bit of digging, you can find a wealth of powerful, time-saving features. Scholle McFarland has done just that, and she shares her findings in a freshly updated and greatly expanded second edition of her book Take Control of Calendar and Reminders. The book now covers Mojave, iOS 12, and watchOS 5.

Scholle walks you through not just the basics of managing events and to-do items, but also how to deal with alarms and notifications, meeting invitations, shared calendars and lists, and location-sensitive to-do items. You’ll learn how to use Siri (and Siri Shortcuts) to interact with your calendars and reminders on macOS, iOS, watchOS, and even on your HomePod. You’ll also find solutions to common problems—and a huge number of clever, useful tips! You can:

I hope you’ll find this guide as helpful as I have!

Take control of Your Privacy and Take Control of Your Passwords

Today I’m delighted to announce two updated books, both written by Joe Kissell,
Publisher of Take Control Books.

First up is a huge new edition of Take Control of Your Online Privacy. It’s much harder than most people realize to keep their personal data from falling into the wrong hands online. We all use the web, email, and a host of other online services to get our work done, shop, communicate, and entertain ourselves. But around every virtual corner lies another disreputable developer or outright scammer who’s trying to steal your passwords, your money, and even your identity. Understanding exactly who’s trying to get your data, why, and how, is half the battle. The other half is learning the practical steps you can take to protect yourself.

Take Control of Your Online Privacy, Fourth Edition helps you understand what you should and should not be worried about, how common sense and technology work together, and how to achieve a reasonable level of privacy without becoming paranoid or sacrificing convenience. It applies to macOS, Windows, iOS, Android, and a variety of other platforms.

We’ve also just released an updated version of Take Control of Your Passwords. This book delves into the widespread problem of password overload. Most of us deal with the endless need for passwords in rather unsafe ways, because we think the safe ways (like making unique, random passwords for every single site that wants one) are too difficult. Sure, password managers can help with this, and I recommend using one, but that’s just part of the solution. If you want to know the whole story, top to bottom, so you can craft a password strategy that works for your needs, this book will tell you everything you need to know. Like my online privacy book, it covers all major operating systems and platforms.

If you’re interested in both books, you can save 33% when you buy them as a bundle for $20 in a single purchase with this special link:

It takes a bit of effort to stay safe online these days, but these two books will make the process much more manageable. I hope you find them helpful!

Take Control of Preview

Most Mac users know Preview as a simple app (included free with macOS) that’s used to display PDFs and graphics. Sure enough, it does do those things. But did you know that it’s also a powerful image editor, that it can annotate and manipulate PDFs in numerous ways, and that it can capture images right from your camera or iOS device? In fact, Preview has dozens of amazing features, making it one of the most underappreciated built-in apps on the Mac.

You know where this is going…we have an updated book about it! Take Control of Preview by Josh Centers and Adam Engst is now at version 1.1, adding complete coverage of the Mojave version of Preview. (It still covers earlier versions, too.) Even if you’ve occasionally rearranged pages of a PDF or rotated images in Preview, you’ll be stunned at the depth of features this 178-page book covers. (I was!) You can:

As Josh and Adam detail in their book, the most surprising things in recent versions of Preview are bugs, missing or broken features, and unwelcome interface changes. All these things are frustrating, but you’ll have a better experience using Preview if you know what to expect—and how to avoid or work around certain issues. (You might also feel comforted that if something doesn’t seem to be working quite right, the problem is most likely Apple, not you!)

With the help of Take Control of Preview, you’ll master this powerful yet unassuming app to make the most of your images and documents. You may even realize you no longer need more-expensive tools for those kinds of tasks!

Take Control of Siri

In our customer survey last summer, when we asked which Apple software products people would most like to read about, Siri got the most votes. In keeping with our theme of giving you what you’ve asked for, I’m delighted to announce our latest book, Take Control of Siri by former Macworld editor Scholle McFarland! This book is the definitive guide to Apple’s voice-controlled digital assistant across all platforms—iOS, Mac, Apple Watch, Apple TV, and even HomePod. If you own any Apple device with Siri support, this book will tell you everything you need to know about being more productive, saving time and effort, and having fun with Siri. And you may be surprised at how powerful Siri has become since its early days!

This book is a terrific resource. I’ve been using Siri pretty much since day one—I even gave presentations on it at Macworld/iWorld back in 2012 and 2013—but I learned quite a bit I didn’t know from this book. (I also relearned some things I’d forgotten!) As a result, I’ve started using Siri in ways that have helped me reduce my overall stress level. So whether you’re an old hand at Siri like me, or someone who has never tried it, you’ll find loads of useful advice, tips, and tricks. Here’s just a tiny sampling of what’s in this 138-page book:

  • The numerous ways to activate Siri (by touch or by voice)

  • How to personalize Siri by telling it about yourself, your contacts, and more

  • How to use Siri with AirPods, wired earbuds, or third-party headphones—or in your car

  • How to ask Siri about sports, math and conversions, time, food, movies, people, stocks, the weather, jokes, and random facts (including follow-up questions)

  • How to control music (on any device, with or without an Apple Music subscription)

  • Techniques for using Siri to get directions, set reminders and appointments, send messages and email, and take notes

  • Ways to use Siri to search for files on your Mac

  • What Siri can and can't do for you on an Apple TV or HomePod

  • How to make and use Siri Shortcuts on an iOS device or Apple Watch

  • Everything you need to know about your privacy where Siri is involved

In addition, Scholle has made a series of videos to go with the book, showing you exactly what happens as you use Siri. (Two are ready right now, and eight more will be available in the coming days.) You’ll get to see and hear how to make the most of Siri (as well as its sense of humor). If you’d like to get to know Siri better, you can:

As always, you can download a free sample of the book from our website.

One more thing. This week we also shipped a minor update to Glenn Fleishman’s popular book Take Control of Your Apple ID, which now goes into more detail about two-factor authentication and addresses issues faced by Apple developers with more Apple IDs than devices to set up authentication codes on. If you have any questions or confusion about how your Apple ID works or how to solve problems with it, I hope you’ll check out this updated book.

Take Control of Slack

In the past few years, Slack has become much more than just a popular messaging platform—it’s now the hub of many people’s work lives. If you already use Slack, you know what a powerful tool it can be. If you’ve never used Slack, you might be surprised to discover how much it can benefit not only teams of coworkers but also families, clubs, nonprofit groups, and other organizations—even MUGs! And, most of Slack’s features are available for free! Whether you’re an existing Slack user looking to take your skills to the next level or a beginner who’s feeling overwhelmed and confused by Slack’s idiosyncrasies, Glenn Fleishman has all the answers you’re looking for in his brand-new book, Take Control of Slack.

Drawing on his years of experience, Glenn has taken the best bits of his two former Slack books (Take Control of Slack Basics and Take Control of Slack Admin) and created a new title with a more modern and helpful structure and completely up-to-date instructions for using Slack on all platforms (macOS, Windows, iOS, Android, and the Slack web app). Among many other things, this book teaches you:

  • How to get started using Slack, including creating your first workspace

  • How to manage notifications you get on your desktop and mobile devices

  • How to make audio or video calls in Slack, and use screen sharing

  • How much privacy you can expect in Slack from coworkers, bosses, owners, and Slack itself

  • What you can do in Slack for free, and what features it makes sense to pay for

  • What Slackbot is, and how you can use it

  • How to find and install Slack apps

Every Slack user, from newbie to pro, can find lots of value in this book. If you’re intrigued, you can:

Even though I use Slack every day as part of running a publishing company, I learned a number of things in Glenn’s new book I’d never known before. It has made me a more confident and productive Slack user, and I hope it will do the same for you and your colleagues, family, or team!

Keep your Mac running great under Mojave with these updated books!

I’m happy to announce brand-new, Mojave-compatible updates to four of my most popular Take Control books: Take Control of Backing Up Your MacTake Control of Maintaining Your MacTake Control of Troubleshooting Your Mac, and Take Control of Speeding Up Your Mac. These books (individually or together) will help you keep your data safe, prolong your Mac’s useful life, and avoid or solve many common Mac problems. Because they’re an essential part of any Mac user’s library, we want to offer you a special 50%-off discount on the four-book bundle.

All four titles fully support OS X 10.9 Mavericks through macOS 10.14 Mojave and the latest Mac models, and are up to date with current third-party hardware, software, and cloud services. (Click the covers above or the links to visit the catalog pages for each book and get complete details.)

Take Control of Backing Up Your Mac teaches you how to protect all the data on your Mac from any sort of disaster—from simple mistakes to theft, fires, malware, and other potential threats. You’ll learn all about local backups, cloud backups, bootable duplicates, and much more. The book also calls out what’s new in the world of Mac backups and helps you reevaluate your existing backup plan, if you already have one.

Take Control of Maintaining Your Machelps you prevent problems by de-junking and optimizing your Mac, followed by simple daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly maintenance tasks. It also shows you what commonly suggested maintenance tasks aren’t worth your time.
Take Control of Troubleshooting Your Mac helps you solve problems by teaching you troubleshooting techniques, providing ready-to-use recipes to fix common Mac issues, and teaching you how to think like a technician even when solutions aren’t obvious.
Take Control of Speeding Up Your Mac shows you how to improve your Mac’s performance. It addresses a wide range of speed issues, including CPU, RAM, and disk usage; hardware upgrades; network configuration; and much more.
Each of these books has a $14.99 cover price, but if you click the above links you’ll get 30% off (so, $10.49 each) with your MUG discount. The discount is applied automatically when you click Check Out.
But I can offer an even better deal!
 If you buy all four at once, the bundle costs just $30—a 50% savings off the individual cover price! To take advantage of this offer, use this link to add all four books to your shopping cart at once and apply coupon code CPN30170213025:
Buy the four-book “Mac fitness” bundle for $30

We have a bunch of Take Control authors hard at work on new titles and updated versions of old titles, and we’re excited for you to see what’s coming over the next few months. In the meantime, I hope you’ll take advantage of this extra-low price to keep your Mac running safely and smoothly.

Take Control of Notes

A recurring theme in Apple’s built-in apps is that they look simple on the surface, but often hide significant power. We’ve seen this (and written about it) with Apple MailPreviewCalendar and Reminders, and more. Today, in response to a huge number of requests in our summer survey, we’re pleased to announce the latest in our series of books that help you get more from the capabilities that come with your Mac or iOS device. In Take Control of Notes, TidBITS Managing Editor Josh Centers takes you into all the nooks and crannies of the simple yet capable Notes app. If you’ve used Notes only casually and felt there must be more to it, this brief, inexpensive book will show you its true depth.In this 51-page book, you’ll learn things like:

● What your character- and paragraph-level formatting options are

● How to create lists and tables in a note

● Steps for sharing notes with other people, with everyone’s changes reflected immediately

● How to password-protect your notes (and what happens if you forget the password)

● What’s different about the Notes web app at iCloud.com

● Ways to make drawings and sketches in notes—using your finger, a trackpad, or an Apple Pencil—and how to use the app’s (limited) handwriting recognition

● How to use Notes on an iOS device as a simple document scanner

● The best ways to organize your notes and search their contents

● Why and how to embed photos, maps, audio, video, and other content in notes

● Ways to sync notes across devices using either iCloud or an IMAP account

If you’re interested in Take Control of Notes, you can:

Buy the book now for $4.19 with the 30% MUG discount

Get more information about what’s in the book

One more thing! We’ve lowered the price on Tonya Engst’s book Take Control of Mac Basics to just $9.99. Although the book hasn’t been updated to cover Mojave-specific features, Tonya is in the process of writing blog posts (like this one) as supplemental material for those using Mojave. Meanwhile, we wanted to make this essential book accessible to a wider range of readers, and we hope the new price encourages you to brush up on your foundational Mac skills (and beyond).

Take Control of Pages

Apple has been paying lots of attention to its Pages app for Mac and iOS recently. Just last month, the company released updated versions of the app on both platforms with support for 10.14 Mojave and iOS 12, plus new features such as publishing an ebook from Pages directly to the Apple Books Store; adding colors and images to backgrounds in page layout documents on all platforms; using Dark Mode and Continuity Camera in Mojave; recording, editing, and playing audio directly on a page on your Mac and in iOS; and many more. So Michael E. Cohen has, yet again, updated Take Control of Pages with complete coverage of all the latest changes to Apple’s premier word processing and page layout app.

The book has now grown to an impressive 341 pages, making it an exceptional value at $14.99. You can:

Buy the book now for $10.49 with the 30% MUG discount

Get more information about what’s in the book

Speaking of Apple apps beginning with “P,” I wanted to take this opportunity to remind you about Jason Snell's new book Take Control of Photos—a complete guide to using Apple’s Photos app on Mac and iOS, now expanded from its earlier incarnation as a Crash Course into a full-length Take Control book, with coverage of Mojave and iOS 12. Enjoy!

Updated version of "Take Control of iCloud"

As our season of updates continues, I wanted to let you know about the latest addition to the list: version 6.1 of my book Take Control of iCloud, Sixth Edition, which now covers Mojave and iOS 12, plus all the changes to iCloud that have taken place over the past year or so.

In this 203-page book, I cover every iCloud feature—including iCloud Drive, iCloud Photos, iCloud Family Sharing, iCloud Music Library, and the numerous types of data you can sync via iCloud (email, contacts, calendars, notes, passwords, and so on). I tell you how to navigate the web apps on the iCloud website, how to use iCloud to back up or locate an iOS device, what features you can use on an Apple TV, how to manage the security and privacy of your iCloud account, how to buy extra storage if you need it, and much more.

Nearly everyone who uses Apple devices also relies on iCloud for at least some services. If you’ve ever found iCloud confusing or overwhelming, you’ll find lots of help in this book. As always, you can cownload a free sample of the book to get a better idea what’s in it.

You can:

Buy the book now for $10.49 with the 30% MUG discount

Get more information about what’s in the book

By the way, in case you haven’t already seen it, Glenn Fleishman’s new book Take Control of Your Apple ID makes an excellent companion volume! It goes into far more detail than my iCloud book does about understanding and managing your Apple ID(s)—especially how to prevent and solve problems. I hope you’ll find both books useful!

That’s all for now…back to the paragraph factory, where lots of other new and revised books are under construction. Coming soon: updates to Take Control of PagesTake Control of Backing Up Your MacTake Control of Maintaining Your MacTake Control of Troubleshooting Your Mac, and Take Control of Speeding Up Your Mac—plus all-new titles!

Master Photos in Mojave and iOS 12 with "Take Control of Photos"

Jason Snell has been writing about Apple and the Mac since 1994. He was formerly the lead editor of Macworld, and now runs the Six Colors site and hosts a bunch of podcasts. In other words, he’s pretty much a celebrity in the Mac community, and we couldn’t be more delighted that he has applied his considerable expertise to a new book that explores Apple’s Photos app in Mojave and iOS 12. Take Control of Photos updates and expands on Jason’s earlier book, Photos: A Take Control Crash Course. At 156 pages, the new book is more than twice as long as its predecessor, and it tells you everything you need to know about using Photos.

This book tells you how to:

●Migrate your library from iPhoto or Aperture (Apple’s discontinued professional photography app) into Photos
●Import photos from devices or memory cards
●Use multiple Photos libraries
●Navigate the Photos interface, including the sidebar and icons
●View, edit, or disable Live Photos
●Organize your library by using enhanced search features, adding metadata, building albums, and creating smart albums
●Edit your photos using quick fixes like cropping, applying filters, and fixing red-eye and rotation problems
●Use advanced editing techniques within Photos and edit using external apps like Photoshop
●Manage your photo collection using the Memories and People features, and get summary views
●Sync and share your photos with iCloud
●View your photos on an Apple TV
●Share your photos via social media, export them out of Photos, or turn them into slideshows
●Create printed objects (such as books and calendars) from your photos using third-party services

…and much more. You can:

Buy the book now for just $10.49 with the 30% MUG discount

Get more information about what’s in the book

This is an excellent, detailed book that will help anyone who uses Photos, and I recommend it to you!

One more thing… I’ve also updated Take Control of Apple Mail, my complete guide to Apple’s built-in email app, for Mojave and iOS 12. If you use Mail, I’m sure you’ll find it helpful!

With warm wishes for a happy Thanksgiving,

Joe Kissell
Publisher, Take Control Books

Get answers to all your Apple ID questions in a new Take Control book

In the survey we conducted a few months ago, one of the most-requested topics was managing your Apple ID. We know this is a pain point for many people in the Apple ecosystem, and we want to help! So I’m pleased to announce our latest book, Take Control of Your Apple ID.

In this book, Glenn answers questions like:

●What all is my Apple ID used for?
●How does my iCloud account relate to my Apple ID?
●What problems can two-factor authentication (2FA) solve, and how do I use it?
●Are there other mechanisms I can use to ensure that I can recover an Apple ID in the event of a problem? (Spoiler: yes!)
●What if I have a device that's too old to work with two-factor authentication?
●What should I do if I have two or more Apple IDs or iCloud accounts?
●Will I lose access to all my Apple media purchases if I move to another country?
●Can I share an Apple ID with someone else?
●What exactly should I do if I think someone is hacking my Apple ID account?
●How can I recover a forgotten Apple ID password?
●What steps should I take if Apple locks me out of my account?
●If I lose access to an email address associated with my Apple ID, what can I do?

And that's just the beginning. Glenn has packed a remarkable amount of concise problem-solving information into this compact, 76-page book. Read it before you encounter Apple ID problems to minimize your risk, and if you've already encountered a problem, read it to find the best path to a rapid solution.

Buy the book now for just $5.59 with the 30% MUG discount

Get more information about what’s in the book

Once you understand how to manage your Apple ID, you can eliminate frustration and bring more sanity to your digital life. I hope you’ll check out this excellent book today!

Solve password problems with "Take Control of 1Password"

Hello, and Happy November! Now that the Mojave and iOS 12 releases are behind us, we’re turning our attention to a long list of books in need of updates. I’m happy to announce that the first of these is now available: Take Control of 1Password, Fourth Edition

In this 167-page book, I explain why password security is so important and how 1Password can generate terrific passwords like C7dQ94.d$F4AWj/+GLx, store them alongside usernames and other login information, and enter it all on websites for you with just a couple of keystrokes or clicks. 1Password can also safely store and enter credit card information, plus your personal contact information, secure notes, documents, and more.

You’ll learn how to do all that not only on your Mac, but also in 1Password on iOS, Windows, Android devices, Chromebooks, and Linux computers, so you can access your passwords no matter what you’re using. You’ll also learn how to share passwords securely within a family or workgroup.

The book answers key questions, such as:

  1. What can I do quickly to get better password security?

  2. What about my browser’s autofill feature or iCloud Keychain?

  3. Should I buy a 1Password subscription or a standalone license?

  4. How do I use the new iOS 12 autofill feature with 1Password?

  5. How can I find and update weak or reused passwords I created long ago?

  6. What’s the best way to work with the password generator?

  7. What should I do about security questions, like the name of my pet?

  8. How can 1Password provide a time-based one-time password (TOTP)? 

  9. How can I find out if one of my passwords was compromised in a security breach?

  10. How do I initiate 1Password logins from utilities like LaunchBar?

Get these and many more answers today:

There’s no time like now to improve your password security with 1Password. And stay tuned for many additional new and updated Take Control books over the coming weeks!

Learn about macOS Mojave and iOS 12 with new books from Take Control

September is approaching, and that means the next releases of Apple’s macOS and iOS are right around the corner. We’re pleased to offer you three new titles that provide early access to what you need to know about Mojave and iOS 12, and to give you the chance to save up to $14 (if you buy all three books together).

Plus, once Mojave and iOS 12 officially ship, we’ll release free updates to all three books, to cover what changes between now and then (and, in the case of Take Control of Mojave, add several new chapters).

In Take Control of Upgrading to Mojave, Mac expert Joe Kissell has updated his trusted advice on upgrading to the latest version of macOS. Learn what you need to know to make the process go smoothly and efficiently, and what has changed from previous versions, including revisions to the APFS file system and important new ways of keeping your Mac secure. Includes troubleshooting advice in case things go wrong!

Get more info or buy Take Control of Upgrading to Mojave with the 30% MUG discount

Once you’ve successfully installed Mojave, learn all about it with Take Control of Mojave by Scholle McFarland. Like her previous book on High Sierra, this book covers all the new features and options in macOS 10.14, and also provides a good overview of the entire operating system. Find out about all the changes to your Mac’s apps and system-wide tools, and learn useful tricks that may be not be obvious at first glance.

Get more info or buy Take Control of Mojave with the 30% MUG discount

Take Control of iOS 12, by Josh Centers, also builds on his earlier book about iOS 11, detailing everything that has changed in the new iOS. Learn about Screen Time (to help you monitor and address screen addiction); updated notifications; improvements to Siri, Camera, Messages, and Photos; new password tools; and a long list of other changes—as well as the forthcoming Shortcuts app for automating iOS.

Get more info or buy Take Control of iOS 12 with the 30% MUG discount

Or, buy a bundle of all three books, and save 35%!

Buy all 3 books (a $39.97 value) for only $25.98

Get ready for Apple’s fall operating system releases with the invaluable advice of Joe, Scholle, and Josh—and save money doing it!

We appreciate your continued support of Take Control and our authors!

Three New Take Control Books

I keep hearing about Amazon primateday, which might explain all the posts in my Twitter feed about capuchins, marmosets, and tamarins in a South American rainforest. In other news, it’s the middle of the summer here in the northern hemisphere, which makes it a great time to stock up on reading materials—especially ones about useful projects you can do in your spare time. This week we’d like to offer you a very special deal on three related books, all written by yours truly. Through the end of Friday, July 20, each of these books (normally $15) costs only $5, with coupon code CPN00025859005. In other words: 3books, on sale for 4 days, for $5 each.

All three books involve getting organized and reducing clutter:

In Take Control of Your Paperless Office, Third Edition, I walk you through the process of banishing unwanted paper from your home and office. I show you how to choose a scanner (if you need one), set up OCR software to turn scanned documents into searchable files, create a workflow that helps you keep on top of your documents, name and organize documents so you can find them easily later, and use a variety of other techniques to reduce the amount of incoming and outgoing paper you have to deal with.

Buy Take Control of Your Paperless Office now for $5 or learn more about this book.

You probably have a will that spells out what will happen to your property after you die, but what about all your digital possessions—your passwords, photos, videos, documents, email, social media accounts, and more? Take Control of Your Digital Legacy shows you what data to keep and how to preserve it for the future, as well as how to deal with paper photos that haven’t been digitized. This has been one of my more popular recent titles, and I’ve given more than dozen user group presentations on this topic.

Buy Take Control of Your Digital Legacy now for $5 or learn more about this book.

DEVONthink is one of the most popular and powerful information management tools for macOS and iOS. You can use it to store and organize almost anything, from text snippets to research materials—and it’s especially good for managing scanned documents. But it can also be overwhelming, which is why I wrote Take Control of Getting Started with DEVONthink 2, Third Edition. This book helps you find your way around, learn advanced features, and make the most of this fantastic app.

Buy Take Control of Getting Started with DEVONthink 2 now for $5 or learn more about this book.

Make the most of your summer with these three great books at their all-time lowest prices. But remember: this sale lasts only until Friday, July 20.

P.S. I’ll be sending another email next week about two other recent books (both by authors named Jeff!), but here’s a quick reminder about them. Jeff Porten’s Take Control of Your Productivity helps you manage your time and tasks (on any platform), while Jeff Carlson’s Take Control of Your Digital Storage shows you how to get the most out of both internal and external storage devices on your Mac.

Take Control of Your Digital Storage

We have a new book to tell you about today, and I’m especially excited about it because it’s all about solving problems I know many of you are having. Quite a few people have expressed an interest in a book that will help them deal with the many questions involved in storing their data and managing their disks—concerns that have become more frequent as the volume of data we have (photos, videos, music, and more) has grown. I’m pleased to announce that our good friend Jeff Carlson has written a book that addresses these questions, and it’s available now: Take Control of Your Digital Storage.

I can’t tell you how many email messages I’ve received that involve storage puzzles. People want to know if they should use a NAS (network-attached storage) device or not, and if so, what they can do with it. How to partition and format a disk. Whether a RAID (redundant array of independent disks) is a good idea. How to decide whether something should be stored on their Mac, on an external or network disk, or in the cloud. How to make sense of Apple’s new APFS filesystem. What really happens when they use iCloud’s Optimized Mac Storage feature. And so on. Jeff and I decided it was time to research all these questions and more, and the result is Take Control of Your Digital Storage.

Here’s just a taste of the topics Jeff covers in this Mac-specific book:

  • How to choose a new (internal or external) hard drive, SSD, or hybrid drive

  • Determining how much storage space you need

  • What you need to know about filesystems, including Apple's new APFS filesystem

  • Formatting and partitioning disks using Disk Utility

  • How to repair a misbehaving disk

  • How to create and use disk images

  • What a personal cloud is and why you might consider using one

  • Strategies for freeing up extra disk space

  • Selecting and using a NAS with your Mac (with extra information on using it to store your digital photos)

  • The various kinds of RAID setups, why you might want one, and how to set it up

  • The differences between volumes and partitions (and, for APFS, containers)

  • Why and how to encrypt a disk using FileVault or the Finder

  • Using iCloud Drive’s Optimized Mac Storage feature

And, there’s much more packed into this 124-page ebook. If you’re frustrated because you’re running low on disk space…confused about what storage options you should use…struggling with questions about volumes, formats, or partitions…trying to wrap your head around a new NAS…or just wanting to have a better understanding of how storage works on a Mac, you need this book!

Buy Take Control of Your Digital Storage for $9.09 with your MUG discount OR

Get more information about this book

I hope you’re as enthusiastic about this book as I am! I’ve been wanting a title like this in our catalog for a long time, and I couldn’t be happier that it’s finally here. Get to the bottom of your Mac storage issues today!

Take control of your productivity

Over the years, we’ve published hundreds of Take Control books that teach you about technology and help you get more out of your apps and hardware. Now we want to go one step further and show you how to mange the innumerable tasks and projects (both personal and professional) that fill your days. I’m delighted to introduce our latest book, Take Control of Your Productivity, by long-time TidBITS contributor Jeff Porten.

Jeff has been studying and using a wide variety of productivity systems for decades, and although they all offer useful insights, none of them worked well for him. So Jeff developed a system that combines some of the best features of other approaches with his own “special sauce.” The result, described in detail in Take Control of Your Productivity, is a powerful yet flexible way to get all your ducks in a row and keep them there.

Whether you’ve been using a formal system like Getting Things Done or just making do with simple lists and calendars, this book will show you how to improve your approach so you can finish your projects and reach your goals—on time, with as little stress as possible.

Some of the things you’ll learn in this book;

  • What’s good (and bad) about your current approach to managing your time and activities

  • How to set and prioritize both short-term and long-term goals

  • How to pick a task-management app that’s appropriate for your needs (and whether that should be a simple app like Reminders, a more robust app such as Things or OmniFocus, or a super-complex tool such as Daylite)

  • What other productivity tools you’ll use alongside your main task management app, and how they all work together

  • Exactly how to track all your events and tasks, making sure everything happens in the right order

  • How to transition from an old system to your new system without worrying that anything will fall through the cracks

  • Where and how to collect all the thoughts and facts you encounter during the day that you might need to remember later—and what to do with them

  • What to do when you start on a task, only to find out that it’s much bigger than you expected

  • How to cope and adjust when something goes wrong—whether it’s a minor setback or a major life problem

Although many of the examples in the book refer to Mac productivity tools, Jeff's advice is platform-neutral. Plus, a companion webpage provides additional details on apps running on Mac, Windows, iOS, Android, and the web.

Like any new skill, Jeff’s productivity system requires time to learn and put into action, but the results will be well worth the effort! The cover price of this 168-page book is $14.99, but with your 30% MUG discount, it’s only $10.49.

Buy Take Control of Your Productivity for $10.49 with your MUG discount OR

Get more information about this book

Don’t struggle with an endless to do list and a hopelesly crowded calendar. Dig into Take Control of Your Productivity and start bringing sanity to your schedule today.




Download books and manage account  •  Unsubscribe info@pmug.us

Take Control of Wi-Fi Networking and Security

The world of wireless networking is constantly evolving. For the past 15 years or so, Glenn Fleishman has been carefully studying the ins and outs of Wi-Fi in its various forms and helping tens of thousands of people understand how best to make use of this essential technology—in part, by way of five previous Take Control titles on Wi-Fi. Those earlier books focused mainly on Apple's Wi-Fi products, but now that Apple no longer makes AirPort devices, Glenn has written a new book that takes his well-respected advice on wireless networking in other directions.
If your Wi-Fi network is unreliable or offers insufficient coverage, if you’re designing a new Wi-Fi system for your home or office, or if you want to take advantage of the enhanced performance and modern features of newer equipment, Take Control of Wi-Fi Networking and Security contains all the information you need to make smart decisions and get the most out of your hardware. You’ll learn about selecting and placing gateways (and when you should consider a range extender or mesh system), configuring devices, improving throughput, troubleshooting, keeping your network secure, and much more. And, this new book covers every major operating system—macOS, Windows 10, iOS, Android, and even Chrome OS.
The cover price of this 122-page book is $12.99, but with your 30% MUG discount, it’s only $9.09.


Buy Take Control of Wi-Fi Networking and Security for $9.09 with your MUG discount OR

Get more information about this book
This new book is an outstanding blend of theory and practice that will quickly teach you what you need to know to conquer Wi-Fi problems and enjoy better, faster wireless networking. I hope you’ll consider purchasing a copy today!


Joe Kissell
Publisher, Take Control Books

Take Control of Apple Mail, Fourth Edition

Running a publishing company, as I’ve been doing for the last year, has been an interesting and exciting challenge. One thing I wasn’t entirely prepared for was how little time it would leave me to actually write books, which is still pretty important given how many Take Control titles have my name on the cover. Today, however, I’m happy to say I’ve crossed one more off my to do list. And if you use Apple Mail on macOS or iOS, I think you’ll find this book incredibly useful.

We’ve just published Take Control of Apple Mail, Fourth Edition. This is a complete guide to handling your email with Apple Mail, and it now covers Mail in High Sierra, Sierra, and iOS 11. Among the hundreds of changes in the new edition are descriptions of the current workings of gestures, addressing, Markup, Handoff, and many other recently updated features. It contains extensive recommendations for third-party plugins; helpful hints for filtering and finding messages; instructions for backing up, restoring, and importing email; suggestions for making attachments work better (both as sender and recipient); and numerous troubleshooting tips. And it has greatly expanded coverage of using Apple Mail on an iPhone or iPad.


In addition, we’ve lowered the cover price of this 221-page book from $20 to $14.99, making it an even better value than before. And, with your 30% MUG discount, it’s only $10.49.

Buy Take Control of Apple Mail, Fourth Edition for $10.49 with your MUG discount OR

Get more information about this book

Note: You may have heard about a new encryption issue called EFAIL that can affect Apple Mail. This issue was discovered too late to cover it in the book, but we have an article with complete details here: What You Need to Know About the EFAIL Vulnerability. (Short version: it’s not as big of a deal as the press is making it out to be.)

This update has been in the works for a long time, and I’m delighted that it’s available at last. If you use Apple Mail on a Mac or iOS device, I hope you’ll consider purchasing a copy so that you can have the best possible email experience.


Joe Kissell
Publisher, Take Control Books

Take Control of Numbers, Pages, Keynote

The pace of software updates from Apple never seems to slow down, and that keeps us busy too, since we often update our books to reflect the latest reality. Today I’m happy to announce updated books about two products in Apple’s iWork suite: Numbers and Pages—plus a special discount on our Keynote book.

First, Sharon Zardetto has thoroughly revised her book Take Control of Numbers, now entering its second edition. This extensive update covers Numbers 4 for Mac, with a large number of new features since the first edition of the book was published, including easy transposing of rows and columns, an updated formula editor, threaded comments, Touch Bar support, and much more. This edition also adds a new section on Numbers’ new sharing and collaboration features.

And, we’ve lowered the cover price of this 273-page book from $20 to $14.99.

Buy Take Control of Numbers for $10.49 with the 30% MUG discount(a coupon code will be applied automatically when you click Check Out)

Not to be outdone, Michael E. Cohen has also updated his book Take Control of Pages, Second Edition to version 2.1, which now covers Pages 6.3 on the Mac, Pages 3.3 for iOS, and the current version of the Pages for iCloud web app, all of which were released in September 2017.

The 283-page book now discusses linked text boxes, the expanded Shapes library, threaded comments, custom color fills in iOS, fixed layout EPUBs, and expanded file management capabilities, among other new or updated features.

Buy Take Control of Pages, Second Edition for $10.49 with the 30% MUG discount (a coupon code will be applied automatically when you click Check Out)

But wait, there’s more! Even though each of these lengthy books is individually a steal at $10.49, we have an even better offer for you: buy a bundle of both books for just $20 and save 33% off the cover price—that’s an even bigger bargain than your MUG discount!

Buy Take Control of Pages and Take Control of Numbers together for $20  

There’s one other app in Apple’s iWork suite: Keynote. And we have a book on that one, too: Take Control of Keynote—in fact, I wrote it myself! Unfortunately, that book hasn’t been updated to cover newer features such as real-time collaboration and Keynote Live. But even though the book is somewhat out of date, it still contains loads of useful information, and most of it applies to the latest versions of Keynote for macOS, iOS, and iCloud. Since we couldn’t swing an update at this point, we’ve done the next-best thing, which is to lower the price from $15 to just $5! If you use Keynote, I think you’ll find this book quite useful, and I hope you’ll take advantage of this special deal.

Buy Take Control of Keynote for $5

Improve your productivity with Apple’s iWork apps and these great books today!

Take Control of Apple Automation

As February draws to a close, I’m happy to announce a brand-new book by Josh Centers about HomeKit, a new version of his book on the Apple TV, and a dramatic price reduction on Jeff Carlson’s book about the Apple Watch.

First, I want to introduce Josh’s latest book, Take Control of Apple Home Automation. This book introduces you to Apple’s HomeKit platform, which lets you configure, control, monitor, and automate a wide variety of internet-connected “smart home” products, such as outlets, lightbulbs, switches, thermostats, sensors, and door locks. Whether you’re new to the world of home automation or you want to expand your existing skills and knowedge, this book teaches you everything you need to know. You’ll learn how to choose devices to meet your needs, install and configure everything safely, troubleshoot problems, and much more. And you can even get started with a basic smart home setup for less than $50.

Buy Take Control of Apple Home Automation for $10.49 with the 30% MUG discount (a coupon code will be applied automatically when you click Check Out)

Next is an updated version of Josh’s Take Control of Apple TV, Second Edition. This book goes beyond the basics of using an Apple TV to include tips for getting the most from the Siri Remote, using apps from Apple and third parties, dealing with wiring and network issues, and even using an Apple TV for presentations.

The newly released version 2.2 covers all the changes in tvOS 11, plus the new 4K model of the Apple TV. It also covers the Apple TV Remote built into the iOS 11 Control Center, expanded use of single sign-on, and new ways to control Apple TV playback using iOS and iTunes.

Buy Take Control of Apple TV, Second Edition for $10.49 with the 30% MUG discount (a coupon code will be applied automatically when you click Check Out)

Finally, I want to announce that we’ve cut the price of Jeff Carlson’s Apple Watch: A Take Control Crash Course in half—to just $5—and that’s before your MUG discount! If you feel like you’re not getting the most out of your Apple Watch, this book will help you discover its hidden talents and use it as a tool for fitness, productivity, and entertainment. And there’s never been a better price.

Why the price drop? The book hasn’t been updated to cover the very latest hardware (Series 3 watches) and software (watchOS 4), but as Jeff explains in this blog post, 95% of the information is still accurate and useful. So we wanted to offer you a great deal on a very slightly out-of-date book!

Buy Apple Watch: A Take Control Crash Course for $3.50 with the 30% MUG discount (a coupon code will be applied automatically when you click Check Out)

These three books will help you make the most of your snazzy Apple devices, and I invite you to check them all out today. Enjoy!

Two Updated Take Control Books

Happy Valentine’s Day!

I’m delighted to announce two updated books about digital photography from our friend and digital photography expert Jeff Carlson. (And, you can buy both books together for a special low price.)

Now that it’s so easy to take and store digital photos, it can become overwhelming to stay on top of managing them all. In Take Control of Your Digital Photos, Jeff gives you a plan for tackling this problem, starting with preparing your camera ahead of time, then choosing the right app to manage your photos, judging and organizing your photos, and backing up your photos for safekeeping. This book is geared towards both Mac and Windows users, and discusses the merits of five popular photo management apps–Apple’s Photos, Lightroom Classic CC, Lightroom CC, Photoshop Elements, and Mylio–to help you choose the right one for your needs. (This book expands and updates an earlier title, Take Control of Your Digital Photos on a Mac.)

Buy Take Control of Your Digital Photos for $10.49 with the 30% MUG discount (a coupon code will be applied automatically when you click Check Out)

We’ve also released a new version of Jeff’s book Take Control of Lightroom CC. Last fall, Adobe released a new version of its Lightroom application, Lightroom CC, that is specifically designed for cloud interaction, and meant to appeal to users who want to do more than the basics with their photos, but want something more streamlined and simplified than Lightroom Classic CC or Photoshop. In Take Control of Lightroom CC, Jeff gives a thorough but accessible guide to the new Lightroom CC. He explains where it fits in the Lightroom ecosystem, then moves on to detail how to import, manage, and professionally edit your photos using Lightroom CC. For those who want to keep using Lightroom Classic CC, he also looks at how the two apps can work together.

Buy Take Control of Lightroom CCfor $10.49 with the 30% MUG discount (a coupon code will be applied automatically when you click Check Out)

But, we’re also offering a special bundle of the two books together for $20, which is even less than what you’d pay with the MUG discount on the individual titles!

Buy Take Control of Your Digital Photos and Take Control of Lightroom CC for $20 (a coupon code will be applied automatically when you click Check Out)



Joe Kissell

Take Control Books for Macintosh User Groups

January 2018

Hello, from Joe Kissell, Take Control Books!

Seems like every time I turn around, there’s another news report about a big company being hacked, a gigantic list of passwords being stolen, or some other security vulnerability being exposed. Every time this happens, huge numbers of people suffer—sometimes in small ways (like having to jump through hoops to prove their identity or recover an account) but, all too often, in large ways (like identity theft that leads to major financial losses).

Most of this suffering is preventable, and the first step is handling your passwords properly. If you use the same password on a bunch of different sites, or if any of your passwords are short, easy-to-guess strings (like password1 or letmein or qwerty), I’m sorry to say you’re very likely to be a future victim of a password hack. But having unique, strong, hack-resistant passwords doesn’t mean going through a lot of hassle. You can have great passwords and convenience too!

I’m happy to announce brand new editions of two books that address different aspects of dealing with passwords: Take Control of Your Passwords and Take Control of 1Password. If you don’t already have a bulletproof password plan, I hope you’ll consider one or both of these books as a way to help you achieve password bliss. (And, you can buy both books together for a special low price.)

Take Control of Your Passwords, Third Edition helps you develop a complete password strategy. It explains the whys and hows of creating great passwords, using two-factor authentication and two-step verification, choosing and using a password manager (and dealing with passwords in situations where a password manager app can’t be used), and helping other people with their passwords. The new edition covers current versions of a dozen popular password managers, using biometrics (such as Face ID on the iPhone X), working with authenticator devices (which can include an Apple Watch), preparing an emergency password plan, and many other new or updated topics.


 Buy Take Control of Your Passwords, Third Edition for $14.99
 We’ve also released a new edition of Take Control of 1Password. This book takes you in depth on my favorite password manager app, helping you get up to speed quickly and master all of 1Password’s essential tools. 1Password has undergone a lot of changes since the previous version of the book was released over a year ago, including extensive revisions to the Windows version; feature and interface updates for macOS, iOS, and Android; a new 1Password X extension for Chrome that brings 1Password to Chrome OS and Linux for the first time; a command-line version of the app; and greater emphasis on hosted 1Password accounts (for both licensing and syncing). The new edition covers all that and more.


Buy Take Control of 1Password, Third Edition for $14.99

If you’d like both—Take Control of Your Passwords for the overall strategy and Take Control of 1Password for all the details on that particular password manager, we have a special deal for you. You can use this handy link to buy the new editions of both books at one time for just $20—a 33% savings:

Buy Take Control of Your Passwords and Take Control of 1Password for $20 (a coupon code will be applied automatically when you click Check Out)

Stay on top of your password security while increasing your convenience with these two essential books!

Take Control of Pages

Are you interested in getting the most out of Apple’s Pages? Pages is a big, rich app with hundreds of features, but not all of its potential is readily accessible. In Take Control of Pages, Second Edition, Michael E. Cohen digs deep into Pages, unearthing the nuggets of knowledge you need to make your work shine.

With Michael’s help, you can navigate Pages like a pro. Learn how to:

  • Find where the tools you need lie, whether on the Mac, in iOS, or in the Web app

  • Do everyday word processing, including working with fonts, tabs, indents, rulers, search and replace, spell checking, and more

  • Format longer, more complex documents, with customized headers, footers, page numbers, tables of content, footnotes, and section breaks

  • Manage styles, including paragraph styles, character styles, list styles, and object styles

  • Create your own templates, complete with master objects

  • Master the many multi-touch gestures on iOS that give you pinpoint control over page elements

  • Include complex tables and charts and make them look exactly the way you want

  • Customize layout and manipulate graphics like a pro

  • Collaborate with others in real time using iCloud

  • Share your documents across devices, using Mac, iOS, or almost any Web browser

Buy Take Control of Pages, Second Edition for $14 with the 30% MUG discount

For this second edition, Michael expands his already extensive guide, detailing all the changes Apple has made to Pages since the last version of the book was released. Learn about new support for bookmarks, Web links, and Rich Text Format. Find out how you can now globally replace fonts, enter equations, and style tables and objects in your documents. Best of all, discover the possibilities for collaboration in real-time in Pages for Mac and Pages for iOS with iCloud!

Unlock the power of Pages, and make it work for you, with Take Control of Pages, Second Edition!

Take Control of Calendar and Reminders

Are you familiar with Apple’s Calendar and Reminders, but feel you aren’t using them to their full potential? We’re here to help, with a brand new Take Control title from veteran Mac journalist and editor Scholle McFarland. Introducing Take Control of Calendar and Reminders!

In this book, Scholle guides you through getting to know these incredibly useful apps, including lesser-known (but handy) features. For example, did you know that in Calendar you can set an alert for when you need to leave for an event, based on the travel time calculated using the location you entered for the event? Or that Reminders can prompt you to do something not only at a certain time, but also once you’ve reached a specific destination, like the grocery store?

Buy Take Control of Calendar and Reminders for $7 with the 30% MUG discount

Learn all about Calendar and Reminders, including how to:

  • Customize Calendar to your liking

  • Set up notifications and alerts, so you never miss an event

  • Invite people to events, or share your calendar with them

  • Create, manage, and share lists in Reminders

  • Set alarms in Reminders at a certain time or a certain place

  • Use Siri to save time when creating events or reminders

  • Easily check events and reminders on your Mac, iPhone, or Apple Watch

  • Troubleshoot common problems in Calendar and Reminders

  • Share calendars and reminders using iCloud Family Sharing

If you’ve never taken the time to explore Calendar and Reminders, this book will show you how to make them an important part of your daily routine. If you’ve already been using Calendar and Reminders, you’ll learn how to use them more effectively, troubleshoot common problems, and delve deeper into their capabilities.

Whip your schedule into shape and tame your to-do lists with Take Control of Calendar and Reminders!