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Old 12-23-2007, 11:05 AM   #1
iamback
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Smile Gone mad? No, nuts: I panicked!

Poor old Grace (desktop) is about 7 years old by now, Alan (laptop) about 6.

Alan holds most of my development stuff (source code, development web server, repository (SVN). So when it started developing odd noises again lately, I got really worried: the noises are familiar: one of the two fans (when they are triggered by high temperature) gets very loud, a sign the bearings are starting to fail. Curiously, it's the left-hand fan - again: I had a HD fail first after making really strange noises, which was replaced, and then that one starting to make the same noises, when the technician found it was caused by overheating because the left-hand fan didn't even start any more... there was a period before that the fan was making the same grinding noises the new fan is making now: he replaced both the almost-new HD and the motherboard that the fans were attached to. So when this one fan fails... bye-bye Alan, extended warranty is long since over (and you can't just replace a fan or the combo of two fans - it takes replacing the whole mother board).

So I got a bit panicky, and started looking at laptops and prices... and then yesterday I happened to get a complimentary newspaper in my mailbox (no idea why!) - which had an ad for a special action at an electronics store (a good one): a 13.3" MacBook for EUR 300 off the regular price. Only on Sunday, 23 December. I did some research (1 G memory seemed a bit cramped, for instance) but it looked like a good deal. Slept on it...

Today, the store opened at noon, and I was in there 10 minutes later - so now I've got myself a snappy MacBook 13.3" with a 2.16Ghz Core 2 Duo, 160G HD, and 2G ram (upgrade). And a nice sleeve, so I can carry it in whatever bag (I have several bags that will hold it already).

Gosh.

I can't really afford it - but I can't afford to lose all my work on Alan either!

I went through the setup, registered with Apple (using Airport and some neighbor's connection!!), declined setting up a .mac account (too expensive), downloaded Logitech software (using Safari) for my cordless mini optical mouse (and discovered the mouse works without that, even, but the software allows me to configure it): now I can just unplug the mouse's "thumb" from Grace, plug it into the MacBook, and use it on there. I also figured out how to change the desktop background image, and create new folders (one to store my downloaded mouse software in). Phew!

Lots more to learn and experiment, and I need to assemble a little assortment of cables (USB extension cord, for instance: I can't use the mouse thumb and USB memory stick together because the ports are too close together; and a dedicated Gigabit network cable, at least; and a little pouch to keep that stuff in). The MacBook has Tiger installed, but comes with installation disk(s) for Leopard. And I'll want to figure out how to set up Windows on it as well...

But - so far it "feels good". And this little black thingy is actually more powerful than either Grace or Alan...

(Now, where do I get the money from?)

Oh, and I'll name it Isaac - as soon as I can figure out how to name it!

   
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Old 12-23-2007, 12:21 PM   #2
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Can’t help you with the money, and not positive what you are naming, but can tell you how to name any hard drive, at least: click and hold on the text beneath the icon. After a second or so, it will change into editable text, and you can type whatever you want.

You can even create a custom icon: Make a 48-pixel square image (or smaller if you prefer), select your drive, press Command [Apple]-I for Get Info, and paste the new image over the one at the top of the panel.

You can change most icons and their labels, though not the serious ones belonging to the System itself.

   
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Old 12-23-2007, 12:34 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iamback View Post
and you can't just replace a fan or the combo of two fans - it takes replacing the whole mother board).
The new Macbooks are really great machines. I helped a niece getting it on a wireless connection, setting up an e-mail account and so forth. I really liked the machine even though I am not used to Macs.

Regarding that fan: I did a grease job on a noisy fan on a old PC recently and it is running just fine ever since. These fans have simple bush bearings. A small amount of grease is enough to get them going.
Not something any shop will likely be willing to do for you, but it does not take special skills to get it done well. So once you got everything safely on the Macbook, don't dump old Grace too soon.

   
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Old 12-23-2007, 12:36 PM   #4
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And I, as a desultory* iBook owner, can only advise you on one thing, how to spend even more money.

Before the end of the first year, budget for the AppleCare warranty extension. That's two more years for 1/5-1/4 the price of the machine, but well worth it. Mac laptops are very hard to disassemble, and very expensive to service when you're paying for it.

*mostly PCs here

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Old 12-23-2007, 01:29 PM   #5
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Congratulations!

I bought my MacBook Pro 17" in May and love it.

You would have been asked to name the computer in the initial setup, but if you didn't set it there, it's probably called My Computer.

To change the name, select System Preferences > Sharing and change the name at the top (this is in Leopard. Not sure how you do it in Tiger because I always name mine at the start and never change them).

I upgraded to Leopard on Saturday and it is mostly working pretty well, although there are a few interface things I don't like, such as the coloured menu bar (which takes its colours from the desktop image and is thus a shiny green in my case). and the dark grey header in Safari, which means the icons at the top are hard to decipher.

Which machine are you going to use for your e-mail?

   
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Old 12-23-2007, 01:31 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ktinkel View Post
Can’t help you with the money, and not positive what you are naming, but can tell you how to name any hard drive, at least: click and hold on the text beneath the icon. After a second or so, it will change into editable text, and you can type whatever you want.
Hmmm - I already discovered I could rename the HD but what I really want to do is name the machine, by the name it will be known to me (Isaac) and the name it will be known as in the network (once I plug in an ethernet cable to connect it to Grace and Alan via the LAN. At least I assume that will be possible, though it might take some fiddling (meaning it would be "interesting"): of course I do not only want Isaac to see Grace and Alan, I also want Grace and Alan to see Isaac!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ktinkel
You can even create a custom icon: Make a 48-pixel square image (or smaller if you prefer), select your drive, press Command [Apple]-I for Get Info, and paste the new image over the one at the top of the panel.
Ah, that's nice - and I learned two things at once: how to change an icon and a handy shortcut. Thanks!

Oh, I forgot to mention: I also configured the dock a little, and moved it to the left-hand side where I have my taskbar on Grace and Alan. I know the dock is not exactly the same thing, but it feels more comfortable there.

And I started one "help" video and got it to thoroughly freeze the machine.

Any suggestions for a good site (or more) with (non-video but textual) tutorials about technical stuff? Like how to partition the hard drive (if still possible), or how to set up Windows on the same machine? Etc...?

   
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Old 12-23-2007, 01:38 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jvecht View Post
The new Macbooks are really great machines. I helped a niece getting it on a wireless connection, setting up an e-mail account and so forth. I really liked the machine even though I am not used to Macs.
I'm not used to Macs either, though I have looked over the shoulder of my friend Carla and her son who have Macs, even occasionally used Safari on Carla's machine. And of course I've been absorbing things from following this forum

Quote:
Originally Posted by jvecht
Regarding that fan: I did a grease job on a noisy fan on a old PC recently and it is running just fine ever since. These fans have simple bush bearings. A small amount of grease is enough to get them going.
I'm not sure that would work on Alan's tiny fans though? Still ... in case one or two do stop: what kind of "grease" would it take?

   
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Old 12-23-2007, 01:42 PM   #8
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And I, as a desultory* iBook owner, can only advise you on one thing, how to spend even more money.
Ha!

Quote:
Originally Posted by fhaber
Before the end of the first year, budget for the AppleCare warranty extension. That's two more years for 1/5-1/4 the price of the machine, but well worth it.
I had such an extended warranty on Alan, and I certainly got my money's worth out of that - so I reckon as long as I can postpone it (I'd noticed in general these extended warranties can be bought before the end of the first year) I won't at least have to spend that money now.

   
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Old 12-23-2007, 01:56 PM   #9
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You would have been asked to name the computer in the initial setup, but if you didn't set it there, it's probably called My Computer.
Hmm - I didn't notice anything like that! I could have been tripped by non-PC terminology, maybe, or the fact that it started setting up what amounted to Airport, and I was concentrating on getting that working (not too hard once I found a network I could actually use without first having to set up the wireless part of my modem and figure out what MAC address the MacBook would have.

Quote:
Originally Posted by annc
To change the name, select System Preferences > Sharing and change the name at the top (this is in Leopard. Not sure how you do it in Tiger because I always name mine at the start and never change them).
I'm postponing installing Leopard now until I'm at least a little familiar with the machine - and I would like to be able to separate all my "own" stuff from what came pre-installed so I could re-install without losing my own data and applications (hopefully...). That suggests a partition to me, but I'm not sure, and not sure if that's even possible with a single pre-installed HD in the machine.

Quote:
Originally Posted by annc
Which machine are you going to use for your e-mail?
Grace, for now - but I have Alan set up with an identical Eudora using a synced copy of all my email, so I can basically pick up the laptop and continue, and re-sync when I get back. So until Odysseus grows up, it would be nice if I could get my hands on a (free?) Eudora for Mac - but do I remember correctly that it won't work on Leopard?

(Baby steps, Marjolein! This is new territory...)

   
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Old 12-23-2007, 02:17 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by iamback View Post
Hmm - I didn't notice anything like that! I could have been tripped by non-PC terminology, maybe, or the fact that it started setting up what amounted to Airport, and I was concentrating on getting that working (not too hard once I found a network I could actually use without first having to set up the wireless part of my modem and figure out what MAC address the MacBook would have.
If you click on the Apple icon in the menu bar and then select 'About this Mac' and then 'More info' You will find out about everything!

Quote:
I'm postponing installing Leopard now until I'm at least a little familiar with the machine
It's probably the same. Give it (System Preferences > Sharing) a try!

Quote:
and I would like to be able to separate all my "own" stuff from what came pre-installed so I could re-install without losing my own data and applications (hopefully...). That suggests a partition to me, but I'm not sure, and not sure if that's even possible with a single pre-installed HD in the machine.
You can do it, but you'd have to back it up first as the Disk Utility erases the disk to partition it.

Quote:
Grace, for now - but I have Alan set up with an identical Eudora using a synced copy of all my email, so I can basically pick up the laptop and continue, and re-sync when I get back. So until Odysseus grows up, it would be nice if I could get my hands on a (free?) Eudora for Mac - but do I remember correctly that it won't work on Leopard?
Not sure about Eudora and Leopard, because I haven't used Eudora since about 1999. But I think there's a thread here about a new version...

Good luck with it. It's going to feel very strange for quite a long time, but is worth it in the end.

   
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