Forbidden Fruit – A Bite of the Apple

Lo! And it came to pass that for the first time I have just had an extended play with an Apple Mac. Actually it’s a MacBook with an Intel 2.16 Ghz dual core processor, 2GB memory and a 160 GB hard drive. Actually it’s a 149 GB hard drive (why do hardware manufacturers do that?) and a shiny screen. And a DVD writer.

Quick and easy to set up, I’d recommend it to anyone if all they needed was a bit of email and web browsing, and didn’t have any legacy issues. Annoyingly, like windoze , I had to specify “UK” in several different locations before all of my settings were british. However the firewall wasn’t enabled by default (first thing I looked for) and there were no anti-virus or anti-spyware software packages installed. A quick google showed a worrying naïveté among MacUsers with an “there are no viruses/spyware for macs” attitude, but the same Google brought up ClamAvx and MacScan to deal with viruses and assorted malware.

Eschewing the trial copy of MickeySofts Office package, I installed OpenOffice2.2 (needed to install the X11 windowing system from the Mac install disks first) which opened a bunch of M$ Office documents with minimal problems. Installing software generally seems quite easy. Download the package, expand it to a disk image, double-click it [the image] and from the dialog box drag the icon to the applications folder. Would like more options, or at least more information about what is happening during these installs, though. Would have liked to install Trillian chat client [no mac port 😦 ], but found Fire instead, however that client will no longer be maintained. For working with photographs I installed MacGimp, which is going to need a bit of getting used to after Adobe Photoshop Elements. For only $10 (£5! Don’t you just love imploding economies?) I picked up O2M which transfers email from Outlook to the Mac.

The UI is clean, crisp and neat, can’t compare it to Vista as I am a refusnik, but better than XP. Just need to keep an eye on the way the menu bar at the top of the screen changes as the focus moves from one program or window to another.

The file system is pretty well hidden from the user (even when logged on as an admin) but I eventually managed to dig my way in.

The Airport wireless connection is pretty promiscuous, and found several adjacent networks that I wasn’t aware of (unfortunately their owners were wise enough to use wep and wpa keys)

At the moment my main complaint is that although the MacBook is sexy black, the power adapter, cords, cables and remote control are all white, but hey-ho, I can live with that.

Anyway, back to the fruit bowl.

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~ by @mmonyte on July 26, 2007.

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