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Configure Your Screen Saver

Mac OS X has a built-in screen saver, which comes with a variety of screen saver modules. But why use a module with other people's pictures when you can use your own? Here's how you can configure your custom screen saver:

  1. Choose System Preferences from the Apple menu to display the System Preferences window.

    Figure 6Figure 6

  2. Click the Desktop & Screen Saver icon to display Desktop & Screen Saver options. You might have to click the Screen Saver button to display screen saver options.

    Figure 7Figure 7

  3. Scroll down in the list of Screen Savers and click the name of the iPhoto album you created to select it. After a moment, one of your images will appear in the Preview area.

    Figure 8Figure 8

  4. Make sure that the Use Random Screen Saver check box is turned off.

    At this point, you're done. But you can go a step further and customize the settings for your screen saver to fine-tune the way the pictures appear.

  5. Use the slider in the Screen Saver pane to specify how long the computer should be idle before the screen saver images appear. If you choose Never, the screen saver will never come on, so I don't recommend selecting that. (Kind of defeats the purpose of setting up a screen saver, no?)

    Figure 9Figure 9

  6. Click the Options button to view the Display Options dialog sheet. Toggle check boxes to set your preferences and click OK.

    Figure 10Figure 10

    • Cross-fade Between Slides—Fades one slide into the next one that appears.

    • Zoom Back and Forth—Zooms the images in and out, from one side of the screen to the other. This gives the images a kind of motion effect.

    • Crop Slides to Fit On Screen—Cuts out the portion of an image that won't fit onscreen. (This is where a portrait or vertical image can get messed up.)

    • Keep Slides Centered—Centers the images on the screen.

    • Present Slides in Random Order—Displays the images in random order. Turn this option off if you want the images to appear in the order you set up in iPhoto.

  7. If you want your screen saver to appear automatically when you position your mouse pointer in a specific corner of the screen, click the Hot Corners button. Then choose Start Screen Saver from the pop-up menu that corresponds to the corner you want to use to activate the screen saver. (You can also choose Disable Screen Saver from the pop-up menu for the corner you want to use to prevent the screen saver from starting.) Click OK to save your settings.

    Figure 11Figure 11

  8. Want to see what the screen saver will look like onscreen? Click Test. Be patient—it may take a few moments for the first slide to appear. When you've seen enough, move the mouse pointer or press Esc to view the screen again.

That's it! That wasn't very difficult, was it?

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