Reenable Finder’s status bar. Finder used to display a status bar at window bottom, but Apple’s set it to default off, as in a Safari browser window. If you miss its quick context-sensitive info bits, e.g. file selection metrics and disk space remaining, you can turn it back on by selecting ‘View’ from a Finder window, then clicking ‘Show Status Bar’.
Locate ‘Library’ in your home folder. Under Lion, the ‘Library’ folder is no more, or rather viewing it through Finder no longer works. Here’s the simplest way back to it: Select ‘Go’ from the default Finder menu, then hold down the option key. Presto! It should magically appear on the selection menu.
Make Finder’s sidebar look like it used to. Lion’s ‘Favorites’ bar in a new Finder window looks nothing like Snow Leopard’s. If you find that unsettling, or you’d like to rearrange the furniture, you can do so by dragging stuff you don’t want off the sidebar (poof!), then bring up Finder’s preferences, select the ‘Sidebar’ tab, and check (or uncheck) items you’d like to see/not-see, e.g. turning on the ‘Hard disks’ device view, which lets you quickly browse your Mac’s files (and view used/free space).
Make Dashboard work like it used to. Under Lion, Dashboard’s been relegated to second-string status, no longer on the dock by default (you can get it back by dragging it out of Applications and onto the dock). It’s also by default been assimilated by Mission Control, which means that instead of sliding in over your current screen, it gets it own, imposed over a backdrop that resembles the underside of a floor mat. You can remedy this by bringing up System Preferences, tapping Mission Control, then unchecking ‘Show Dashboard as a space’ (and for new MacBook Air owners, the key command to bring up Dashboard is now fn-F12).
MORE: How I Dislike Thee, OS X Lion, Let Me Count the Ways
Matt Peckham is a reporter at TIME. Find him on Twitter at @mattpeckham or on Facebook. You can also continue the discussion on TIME’s Facebook page and on Twitter at @TIME.