Switching to OS X
Having just read your column in ATPM, I want to send encouragement to make the switch. It is much less traumatic and much easier to learn that I ever dreamed.
My switch came about because I got a new iMac for Christmas, so my situation is somewhat different. We took my old B&W G3 into the store my husband bought the iMac from, where my sales representative copied my G3 hard drive to the new iMac. So, I didn’t have to deal with that, although I did burn CDs of everything I didn’t want to lose, just in case.
When I got the new iMac home, it took me five minutes, literally, to be on the Web and getting mail using OS X as my startup system. I am using OS X Mail and Apple’s Safari Web browser, and find them stable and trouble-free, although Mail lacks a return receipt feature that I would really like to have. In that five minutes, I imported all my bookmarks and mail folders from Netscape 4.79 (which I had been using for e-mail) flawlessly. I have found only one Web site that insisted it could only work with Netscape or IE. I do have IE 5 on my hard disk, just in case.
Because OS X and OS 9 can run simultaneously on the iMac, I always start up in OS X (have now upgraded to 10.2.4). None of my software (PageMaker 7.0, Microsoft Office 98, FileMaker 4.0 are the biggies, with lots of other applications and fonts) is OS X native. I was a little apprehensive, but all I have to do to open an OS 9 program is to double-click on it just as if I had started up in 9. I have found a couple of programs (Roxio Toast Light, for example) that simply won’t work unless I restart in 9, but they are few and far between. I certainly learned only the basics, but that is all I needed to do! I will find out all the niceties as I go along.
I am enjoying working in OS X and will upgrade my software as funds (i.e. birthday and Christmas money) come available. BTW, all my USB peripherals (Epson C80 printer, Epson 1240U scanner, Nikon CoolPix 775 camera) also worked flawlessly as soon as I plugged them in.
This was absolutely the easiest switch from Mac computer to Mac computer or OS to OS that I have ever made. And this is the best Mac computer (since 1986) that I have ever had. Plus, it is really cool looking! I guess you could say that I am a happy camper!
The 2003 “Stuff You Can’t Live Without” Awards
Thank you for this great article. It’s nice to have a little overview of must-have apps of today, now that there is a continuous stream of new software released for the Mac that appears to be stronger than ever before. I guess Mac OS X really started an avalanche of new developers for Mac and, though it’s great to have plenty of options when it comes to software for a specific task, it’s also getting more and more difficult to pick the best-of-breed. Kudos on your choices!
This site is amazing. There are many points being discussed for which I have been searching for a long time, but it’s all here. A big thanks to all at ATPM!
A big thanks also to Matthew Glidden—your articles are really helpful. You must be a good bloke!
I enjoyed the article about sharing printers among Macs on a network. I wonder if you have any suggestions for a situation where two non-networked computers, one a Mac and one a PC, need to share a USB-capable printer. I inquired about using a USB hub to connect the lot of them together and was told “you can’t do that.”
Any information would be appreciated.
It is true that you cannot use a USB hub to do what you want. If you don’t mind manually switching between computer A and B, you could use a USB switchbox, which is an inexpensive solution. The only other way to share the printer would require the two computers to be networked. —Evan Trent
ADB Tablet on OS X
I would recommend you try the new OS X iMate driver from Griffin. You will also need to download the latest version of the Wacom drivers for OS X. With both of those installed, the Wacom drivers may recognize the ADB tablet when plugged into the iMate. If not, perhaps one of our readers can suggest a solution. —Evan Trent
Virtual PC Games
Is there any way to upgrade the video on Virtual PC 5 so that I can at least play a game like Half Life? It will run the program, but it’s incredibly slow. Any suggestions would be wonderful.
No. The only way you can play games that require a video accelerator card is to drop back to VPC 2 or 3. Those older versions support Voodoo (3dfx) accelerator cards. Read my VPC 4 review to find out why support was dropped. —Gregory Tetrault
This article comes at just the right time, I’m getting more interested in the music side of the computer now. On January 8, 2003, I made inquiries into Black Cat Systems for their “audiocorder” software, of which I’m still thinking about, and, recently, a friend of mine installed “SoundEdit 16” on my iMac. Now, I’ve got all this great information from you. Like Tony the Tiger says, “I feel great.”
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Mr. Lewis has the beginnings of a great article set. I think he is wise in eliminating discussion of really high-priced equipment and software. “Sticker shock” is definitely the case with some programs I’ve reviewed. I can’t wait to see his review of Amadeus II. It looks like the ideal program at an unbeatable price, especially if you are using an input device other than Griffin’s iMic. Also, M-Audio now has a standalone version of the Audiophile 24/96. For the price (about $199), you get a lot of features. I’m purchasing one myself.
I hope Apple will increase the number of bits the Audio Manager can handle to at least 24 bits. There are advantages to recording your sound at the highest bit level and sampling rate even if you must downsample to 16 bits and 44.1 kHz later. With the higher parameters, you have more information to deal with if you must do noise control and other forms of sound shaping. Thus, you are not as likely to lose information as when you are editing at lower parameter levels.
On to the next episode!
—Maurice C. Barone
I’m wondering if there is an option for non-Apple CD-R owners using Toast. I tried, but the CD would not boot.
Creating a CD with BootCD does not require an Apple burner. Disk Copy does seem, however, to need a burner that is fully supported. Here is the process I used to burn a boot CD using Toast Titanium 5.2.
- Launch Toast 5.2 and choose Mount Disc Image (Command-M).
- Select the Disc Image created by BootCD. Toast will mount the image and a CD icon will appear on the desktop.
- From Toast, choose Other and select Mac Volume.
- When the Toast window changes to Mac Volume, choose Select. Do not use drag and drop. It won’t work this way.
- In the dialog box that appears, choose the name of the CD that Toast mounted in Step 2.
- Clear the checkbox that says Optimize-on-the-fly and check the box that says Bootable. This does not seem to work if Optimize-on-the-fly is checked.
- Burn the disc and be sure to choose Burn Disc and not Burn Session.