Using the Tiger Fax Capabilities
In addition to the ability (if you have a modem) to send anything that you can print as a fax to any fax machine, Mac OS X provides some relatively sophisticated tools for using your computer as a Fax machine. You have built-in capabilities to send, receive, print, reprocess, and reroute faxes.
Sending Faxes by Printing
As covered in the section detailing the Print dialog earlier in this chapter, sending a printout as a fax requires nothing more than issuing the Print command in an application, and when presented with the standard Print dialog, clicking the cryptic PDF button in the lower-left corner of the window. Under the menu that appears, select Fax PDF, and you will be presented with an interface that lets you specify what number to dial, cover-page options, and other details for the fax job. Clicking the Fax button that appears in this interface dials up the indicated fax machine, and sends off your printout to be printed on the remote fax.
Receiving, Emailing, and Printing Faxes
Receiving faxes is no more complicated than sending them. All you need to do for basic functionality is to open the Faxing pane of the Print and Fax control panel and check the Receive faxes on this computer check box. Also available on this page are a number of options to configure basic fax machine parameters, and to control optional things you choose to do with received faxes in addition to receive them. Among the options are the following:
My Fax Number The number that the fax software should claim as the originating number on delivered pages.
Answer After  Rings The number of rings that should be allowed before the modem picks up the call. If this is also your voice line, you probably want to leave enough time for a human to pick up the phone, unless you want to subject your callers to shrieking fax noises.
Save To A check box enabling a selection menu where you can specify a folder where incoming faxes should be stored. Because there's no way for an incoming fax to identify what user on your system it should belong to, these, by default, go into a communal shared faxes folder located in /Users/Shared/Faxes.
Email To A check box enabling a text field where you can enter an email address where received faxes should be re-sent as PDFs. Very convenient! Want to be able to receive faxes on the road, and you don't want to have to constantly call someone to have them check the fax machine to see if you've gotten that important document? Just configure this so that your computer will receive the document, and then wrap it up as a PDF and forward it off to your .Mac account, and anywhere you can find network access, you can receive your fax. Whoever sent it will never even know you were out of the office.
Print on Printer A check box that enables a selection menu where you can choose a printer for the fax to be printed on. How completely boring a way to make your computer/fax-modem/printer combination act just like an old-fangled paper-based fax.
Show Fax Status in the Menu Bar Selecting this check box will create a little Fax icon in the menu bar, where you can see real-time status information on the fax system (sending, receiving, retrying, and so on).
Set Up Fax Modem Clicking this button opens the Fax List, which is similar to the Printer List, but contains available fax modems. Few users will have anything different than Apple's already-available Internal Modem option that comes preconfigured here, but if you have multiple fax modems installed, you can choose among them here.