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Preston Oct 22, 1999 10:34 AM
Divider Lines on Pull Down menus

I am a new Mac user. I am finding the Apple pull down menu a bit messy. It needs some more dividing lines. Please advice how to create these divider lines.

I thank you in advance for the information.
wlonh Oct 22, 1999 09:29 PM
I took the liberty of posting a question on your behalf to the ResExcellence forum, perhaps it will yield some result:

I don't know of any way to add dividers, there is a way to do it using ResEdit I am sure, but knowing which system resources to edit and how to edit them is another story.

ResEdit is a free Apple application that is a system resource editor, meaning you can hack most anything in the MacOS if you know what you are doing. BUT, there are many safe and easy documented ResEdit 'hacks' that require only a somewhat cursory understanding of the MacOS and ResEdit. Instructions for these ResEdits hacks are quite clear and easy to follow. I have 'ResEdited' my Mac considerably and it is very stable, any glitches at all are unusual. (G3 450MHz beige rev2 minitower, MacOS 8.6, 2 internal SCSI HD's, 2 external SCSI HD's, scanner, printer... basic setup pretty much except no removable media, gave Zip to sis)

Also, would it be helpful to you to reduce some of the items in the Apple Menu? If so, consider this... open your System Folder and look for Apple Menu Items folder and open it. You can make a new folder (go to File menu and select 'New Folder', or Command + N) and call that folder 'Accessories' for example, and you can put various items in the Apple Menu Items folder into your newly created 'Accessories' folder... items that perhaps you do not use often or at all maybe.

And if there is a specific item that you want to be at the top of the Apple Menu, find that item in the Apple Menu Items folder and put a space in front of the name... it will go to the head of the class...

and oh yes, if you don't use the 'Recent Applications' etc, items in the Apple Menu, go to the Apple Menu Options control panel and turn off 'Remember recently used items'

and finally, not to put too fine a point on things but if you rename Sherlock in any way in the Apple Menu such as by placing a space in front of the name 'Sherlock' so that it will appear at the top of the Apple Menu, fine, but when you update to a new version of MacOS, the installer will not recognize your Sherlock application because it has been renamed. This caused some miinor problems for people when they upgraded from 8.5 to 8.6, if I remember. So unrename it when the time comes to do so.

[This message has been edited by wlonh (edited 10-22-1999).]
Preston Oct 22, 1999 10:25 PM

Thank you for posting my question. Your information is also very helpful. I will follow your recommendation and remove some of the items.

Thanks again.
Partridge Oct 24, 1999 02:06 AM
Another way to reduce clutter in the Apple Menu is to create a folder within the Apple Menu Item Folder (which is in the System Folder). Just the Folder name will show up in the Apple Menu, but anything you put into the folder will only appear as a submenu; like that for "Recent Applications".
--- Of course the Moderator has already posted this suggestion ! Perhaps he can suggest a cure for temporary illiteracy ?

[This message has been edited by Partridge (edited 10-25-1999).]

[This message has been edited by Partridge (edited 10-25-1999).]
wlonh Oct 24, 1999 06:02 AM
Um... Er... Ahh... ahem... (boinnnnng)

Partridge, did you perhaps read my post?

The implication was clear. I instructed my man Preston to MAKE A NEW FOLDER inside the Apple Menu Items Folder. Does that sound familiar?


Flurk Oct 24, 1999 06:59 AM
I highly recommend BeHierarchic instead of the Apple Menu Options.
You'll love this control panel. Try it!
And you will have the divider lines and you will be able to group the items. You will also have icons in submenus.

Kind regards
pescao Oct 24, 1999 04:13 PM

i just posted this at resexcellence, but having just read your post, i've a feeling this might be a little over your head dont mean to be rude, but you do say you're a newbie, and resedit isn't for the faint-hearted. still, if you're feeling brave, here you go...

if all you want to do is put lines in the apple menu, i would recommend BeHierarchic, which allows you to customise the apple menu to you heart's content. get it from:

however, if you want to add dividers in the other menus, you have to resedit the fmn2 resource in the finder file (system folder). this is much easier to do if you have a fmn2 template open at the same time (search the net for one, or email me if you cant find ). copy the finder file onto the desktop by option-dragging, and open it up in resedit. next open up the menu you want to alter in the fmn2 resource (they are near the beginning, 520 something), and scroll down to the position you want to add the divider. click on the number (it will be followed by some ***s) and chose 'Insert New Field(s)' from the resource menu. then copy in the details of another divider in the menu (they're pretty easy to spot). once you're done, make sure you alter the 'count' field at the top to reflect the new number of items (add 1 if you've added a single divider, &c). save it, and that's it! put this modified filder file into your system folder, with the old one somewhere safe in case it all goes wrong, and restart. your new, improved menu should be waiting for you...

if this seems a bit much, forget about it! and if all you want to change is the apple menu, just use Behierarchic and be happy. however, resedit is a lot of fun, you can change just about whatever you want with it. get it from apple or resexcellence (address in an above post). and as long as you only edit copies, and keep the original safe, not much can go wrong...but a Warning: if you edit the finder file (as you would for my above fix) have an alternative startup disk handy, such as an OS CD. even keep it in the drive while you do this. because, if you edit the finder, and your computer crashes just as you're taking the old one out and putting the new one in (not very likely, but it's happened to me), you will need to startup from somewhere else, as the hard drive wont be able to find the finder in the system file, and so wont start up. hold down the C key to startup from CD, replace the finder file, and all will be fine.

well, that's about it, now you know!


Preston Oct 24, 1999 07:55 PM
Thanks for your information Pescao.

Just the length of your text already scared me. I will take your advice and get that program you and another memeber posted. Thank you all very much for your help.
Lorihun51 Oct 25, 1999 01:34 AM
Hi.....there is a way to do it without Resedit. Robin Williams in his book "The Little Mac Book" tells you how on page 215. It would be a great book for you to get. It would be too long to post here. Get the book, it's great!!
gorthwein Oct 25, 1999 02:52 PM
Try this utility:

I know some people who are using it with System 8.6 so it should still work.

Lorihun51 Oct 29, 1999 09:54 AM
Yes, AMICO works fine with 8.6. I have used it for over a year now.
The first thing I changed when I got my first mac over a year ago was the Apple menu. I just hated how unorganized it was...LOL
Preston Oct 29, 1999 11:20 AM
I just want to say thanks once again. I installed AMICO and it works great. It is exactly what I was looking for. I was only able to add a divider line into the Apple menu. Is it possible to add didver lines into the control panels menu? It seemed like it was limited to just the apple menu.
Parrish Oct 29, 1999 12:56 PM
Here's what i did: Create a folder with the name ---------------. That's your divider. In the info box, paste a white square over the folder. Next, make subgroups of applications (general, internet, games, ect). Put three spaces in front of the name of each general app. Put two spaces before the name of each internet app, and one space before each game title. It's tricky, but adjust the number of spaces in front of the folder titled "------" so that they fall between each subgroup. I placed this entire conglomeration in a folder called applications so that it can be seem as a submenu. Whew! For reference, this came from Mac OS 7.5 for dummies
Preston Oct 29, 1999 10:27 PM
Thanks Parrish. I perfer divider lines but that works too in organizing the groups.

Thanks again.
ipsyd Nov 4, 1999 08:00 AM
If you want the ultimate in menu control, try a newly-released commercial app called "Action Menus" -

I haven't yet tried it myself, but the people who have developed this were, back in the days of System 6 and 7, the wunderkinds of Mac utilities. Under the umbrella of Now Software, their product "Now Menus" was renowned among Mac users. Later, the company got bought by Qualcomm (because it had such good programmers, I think) and a lot of the Now software faded away (or not! I still know a lot of people using Now Contact/Up-To-Date, even though it has not been updated for several years.)

Anyway, these same programmers seem to have left Qualcomm and set up on their own as PowerOn, and they have bought the various Now apps from Qualcomm too. So Now Menus has reappeared as OS9-compatible "Action Menus", and it looks like it can make menus do double somersaults if you want. And not just the Apple menu - all menus! Check it out!

P.S. And updated versions of Now Contact/Up-To-Date are expected this month! At last!

[This message has been edited by ipsyd (edited 11-04-1999).]

[This message has been edited by ipsyd (edited 11-04-1999).]
wlonh Nov 5, 1999 10:41 PM
Great little page with some Apple Menu trix:
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