Get Front Row for Mac OS X 10.7 Lion
You might have heard that Mac OS X Lion ditches Front Row, the easily accessible media player that was activated by hitting Command+Escape on a keyboard or by pressing play on an Apple Remote. If you like Front Row and are disappointed in Lion leaving it behind, you can easily get it working again just by copying a couple files over from the prior OS version.
Manually Enabling Front Row for OS X Lion
This will require access to a Mac OS X 10.6 installation. The following Front Row files from OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard must be moved into the exact same locations in Mac OS X 10.7 Lion:
If you have Snow Leopard installed and laying around, you can preserve and move these files yourself quickly with Finder or by using cp, just be sure to place them in the exact same locations. This is very easy if you have a dual 10.6 and 10.7 boot config going, but if not don’t worry there’s a simple alternative.
Get Front Row Working in Mac OS X Lion with an Installer
Alternatively to moving the files yourself, you can use use a free package installer that contains the 10.6 Front Row files and places them automatically into the appropriate locations in Lion. This is easier.
The MacHatter package does all the work for you and has been confirmed to work. If you click on “Custom Install” you can double check that the Front Row files exist:
(For those wondering, Command+Escape does nothing in Mac OS X Lion)
The little package installer app was found by 9to5mac, who goes on to speculate that the ease of enabling Front Row for OS X Lion could indicate that Apple will simply release the application as an optional paid download from the Mac App Store. I like that idea, and I hope it pans out, or else what is the point of Apple selling their Mac remote controls?
If you’re looking for a free alternative to Front Row, don’t miss our guide on using Plex to create a Mac media center, it’s powerful, easy to use, and works on any Mac.