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The 50(+) Steps I Go Through Setting Up My Brand New Mac

I’ve already made a similar list years ago, but it has changed quite a bit so I felt that it needed a refresh. These are all the steps I go through. Only very few are mandatory for everyone, most of them are just how I like my mac to be. You can probably have a totally working mac for anything you want to do with less than 20 of these steps, but I feel like I’m missing something if my mac doesn’t have most of the things listed here.

  • Log In to my iCloud account*
  • Make sure not to select use the iCloud account as login password*
  • Install System Updates*
  • Download Dropbox to sync passwords over (using 1Password)
  • Set up iCloud Keychain and sync over Internet Accounts section*
  • Go through all the System Preferences and change everything (that you can change) to the same as other mac [I usually have both macs one next to each other to make this step easier]
  • Install Alfred. Change the keyboard shortcut to ⌘SPACE, replacing Spotlight
  • Start Xcode download (will take a few hours)
  • Login to Dropbox
  • Install 1Password and VSCode (my main writing app) + 1Password Mini
  • Open Terminal, look in disbelief at the awful theme, close it. Proceed to download iTerm and install it.
  • Install Firefox and add uBlock for Firefox as an extension, also add the 1Password extension
  • Install TextExpander
  • Open terminal and run defaults write AppleShowAllFiles YES to show hidden files
  • Sync Alfred, Safari and Firefox settings
  • Install Keyboard Maestro
  • Set up TextExpander e Keyboard Maestro using previous exports
  • Install homebrew \curl -fsSL | bash -s stable
  • Export installed homebrew packages from the other mac and install them1
  • Install rvm /usr/bin/ruby -e "$(curl -fsSL"
  • Install latest version of ruby
  • gem install cocoapods fastlane
  • Install SSH keys for everything (Github, Gitlab):

    1. Generate a key pair using ssh-keygen -t rsa -b 4096 -C ""
    2. If it has a custom name add it manually ssh-add /Users/valentinourbano/.ssh/githubSSHKEY, in any case, move it in the ~/.ssh/ folder.
    3. Check if it works using ssh -T
  • Install Jekyll and Gatsby
  • Install CleanMyMac, Fantastical, f.lux, Bartender, iStatMenus, Amphetamine, Hazel, Timing and Transmit
  • Install Unity and Android Studio

  • Mandatory Step
  1. I don’t have a full export handy but the main things are: Node JS (with nvm), Express, flutter, python, tensorflow, ImageMagick, git, autojump, LAMP Stack + Postgres, 7zip. 

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Valentino Urbano



Valentino Urbano

iOS Developer, Swift, Writer, Husband

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