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macmxroolz
2005-03-21, 11:38
Hi Everyone,

I don't really know if this is relevant for a new thread so please remove if it is out of line.

I have used Macs in the past (such as the old Mac SEs to more recently a friend's dual G5 PowerMac -- which I really love but cannot afford). I am currently removing myself from Microsoft OS products at the home (I will still happily support myself maintaining Microsoft products but will not tolerate anymore Ad-Aware, SpyBot, anti-virus scans along with the fine tuning of third-party firewall protection, weekly defrags, and the paranoid atmosphere this all creates, etc., etc., etc.)...

I am thinking of purchasing a new 12" G4 IBook/1.2Ghz/30GB Hard Drive. I would expand the memory to at least 1 GB RAM, and have a Firewire Hard Drive (at least 90 GB) for backup and to try other stuff with... I would purchase this with 3 year product protection.

My concern is will it be enough of a machine for me to do the following:

-further my knowlege of OS X
-extensively use Microsoft Office For Mac (mainly large word documents); I am trying out NeoOffice on friend's machine but am more comfortable with Microsoft Office (I have many word documents and don't like to convert files)
-lightly use Photoshop CS to manipulate some graphics
-hook up to HP Scanner to scan documents every now and then (the scanner is OS X compliant, everything I have been purchasing recently has to be Mac compatible)
-be able to use wireless internet at the local coffeeshop without having to buy any new card
-every now and then, run Virtual PC to run Microsoft Access (it would open a small database); I would not expect this to run fast
-hook up to 17" monitor and run StarCraft in OS 9 for fun every now and then
-also on 17" monitor play DVDs every now and then
-read large PDF manuals (I know about the screen size, another friend of mine has a 12" Powerbook -- the screen size of his machine is perfect for viewing what I need to view)
-connect a USB microphone for some language CDs in OS 9.

I also would like to know if it is still possible to install the Mac OS X on an external firewall HD device.

Any comments, thoughts, advice would be appreciated.

Regards,

Michael

Brad
2005-03-21, 11:48
All of those should easily be handled by the current generation iBooks except for the bit about Mac OS 9. The old OS 9 system is no longer bootable on current Macs. You can still use the "Classic" environment, though, if for some reason the software you need is not available natively.

Yes, you can install Mac OS X on and boot from an external FireWire drive.

macmxroolz
2005-03-21, 12:11
Thanks Brad. It is sometimes difficult to figure out what one needs. I read everyone's posts but what they describe doesn't fit my needs...

I don't have one on hand to play around with... There are no Apple stores where I live and almost everyone I know either has PowerBooks (which are great but I sort of don't want to pay that much) or Mac desktop machines. I also sort of prefer the aesthetics of an IBook over a PowerBook.

(I meant Classic Environment -- I have an old version of StarCraft that I have played in Classic Environment on the Dual Power G5 and like to play every now and then... is there a OS X version?)

Luca
2005-03-21, 12:32
Yeah, not only does StarCraft have an OS X version, but it also has an OS X installer so you don't even have to run Classic mode to install or run it. Blizzard even released a patch for it very recently, which seems like a very classy move. Most game developers don't keep working on their games so long after they come out... of course, Starcraft may be a special case, but still. Go Blizzard!

macmxroolz
2005-03-21, 12:50
That is great about Blizzard and Starcraft. I just checked at the online store at Blizzard and will be ordering Diablo II (nothing is better to get acquainted with one's new computer than a new game).

Two last questions, will any almost new Logitech USB infra-red mouse work on this laptop (sometimes I prefer to use a mouse instead of the touchpad)?

I almost always use a USB cordless LogiTech Trackball USB Cordless mouse on my desktop (when I play games and work in Photoshop CS when the battery isn't dead). It works on my friends Power G5 (dual) but will it work on the IBook? Logitech's website isn't being helpful. I would only be using this mouse when the IBook is at home.

Also does anyone know if GarageBand comes with new IBooks? That program is very addictive (it is almost like a game)?

SledgeHammer
2005-03-21, 13:24
If a mouse works with a G5, it works with an iBook. As far as peripherals go, if it works with OS X it works with OS X, regardless of the computer, and as far as I know, any USB mouse you buy will work with OS X. GarageBand does come installed on every new Mac as part of the iLife bundle (also includes iPhoto, iTunes, iMovie, and iDVD (if you have a SuperDrive). It sounds like an iBook will be a great computer for you.

Brad
2005-03-21, 13:28
Yep, it should. I use a Microsoft Intellimouse and it's simply plug-and-play like any other USB mouse. The scroll wheel, right button, and middle button are automatically picked up and used as you would expect. Extra buttons can be mapped to the Exposť functions (which I highly recommend) of you can install third-party software that will let you map other functions to them.

Koodari
2005-03-21, 13:38
Yes the computer will do that. I don't even know if you need 1+ GB of RAM. 768MB has been good for me. Also I wouldn't necessarily take Applecare. Depending on your preferences it could be better to sell after 11 months, when there is still a bit of warranty left, and get a new one. That's what I am planning.

macmxroolz
2005-03-21, 15:18
Thank you everyone very much for your advice. I feel a lot better about my future purchase.

I think 768 MB would be adequate for me except for the fact I will have to run Access 2000 in Virtual PC at times. This would be additional insurance that it works smoothly. I would try to do this as infrequently as possible. It would also be placed on an external firewire hard drive. Does anybody have experience with Virtual PC on an IBook? I would probably use Windows 98 (for lower hardware demands) and Office 2000 for the version of Access I need...

The next sentence many of you may find kind of disturbing (but some may find funny). Windows 2000 runs very smoothly on a dual G5 Power PC. We did it to test Access 2000 in Virtual PC. But I would never, ever, ever buy a Mac just to run Microsoft Windows.

ASZ993
2005-03-21, 20:32
Thank you everyone very much for your advice. I feel a lot better about my future purchase.

I think 768 MB would be adequate for me except for the fact I will have to run Access 2000 in Virtual PC at times. This would be additional insurance that it works smoothly. I would try to do this as infrequently as possible. It would also be placed on an external firewire hard drive. Does anybody have experience with Virtual PC on an IBook? I would probably use Windows 98 (for lower hardware demands) and Office 2000 for the version of Access I need...

The next sentence many of you may find kind of disturbing (but some may find funny). Windows 2000 runs very smoothly on a dual G5 Power PC. We did it to test Access 2000 in Virtual PC. But I would never, ever, ever buy a Mac just to run Microsoft Windows.

Just use Windows 2000. It's less demanding than XP and more stable than 98. Alternatively,can you convert it to anything that is available for OSX?

Luca
2005-03-21, 20:42
No, my dad makes his living with databases and you absolutely cannot use anything other than Access for working on an Access database. You can personally switch to something different like Apple's own FileMaker Pro, but if you have to work on other people's Access databases then you will have to keep a copy of Windows around. Hopefully you won't have to use Virtual PC much.

FFL
2005-03-21, 21:16
Here's something new for Luca's dad and for macmxroolz as well.

The latest version of FmPro Migrator will convert Access databases, to FileMaker databases.

http://fmpromigrator.com/products/fmpro_migrator/fmpro_migrator_features_benefits.html#access_to_fm pro

Migrate Access databases to FileMaker 7 - [FmPro Migrator for Windows and MacOS X Feature] - Using FmPro Migrator, Access databases can be migrated to FileMaker 7 in order to take advantage of FileMaker's legendary ease of use and increased data management capacity. Migrated Access databases can now grow to the maximum 8TB file size offered by FileMaker*7 and can be run on MacOS X and Windows. Note: FmPro Migrator for MacOS X generates migration scripts which are then run on VirtualPC or Windows to complete the migration process.
I cannot emphasize enough how happy you will be, if you spend the money for VirtualPC on FileMaker Pro and this conversion tool instead.

http://filemaker.com

macmxroolz
2005-03-24, 00:42
I've checked the FileMaker Pro site. It looks like great database software. But I really have to stick with Access because for work requirements. I am slowly teaching myself MySQL but it will take time because I'm not that smart. If worse comes to worse, I'll connect using VNC to my Windows machine (until I give it away to an 'un' lucky family member to do Access work). Once again, I cannot say how much I appreciate these forums. I have been spending a lot of time lurking here picking up great advice. You guys are very nice to new people.

FFL
2005-03-24, 01:21
I've checked the FileMaker Pro site. It looks like great database software. But I really have to stick with Access because for work requirements. Unless you could convince "work" of the benefits of switching to FMP.
It has a Windows version, you know, and could allow all the work machines to be multi-user, multi-platform, on one database file. It doesn't sound like you're using Access that efficiently.
I am slowly teaching myself MySQL but it will take time because I'm not that smart. Even more the reason that you should explore FileMaker Pro. It doesn't sound like your needs are heavy enough to benefit from using SQL. It sounds like you'll benefit much more from the cross-platform and ease-of-use of FileMaker. (disclaimer - I don't work for FileMaker or Apple, I'm just a satisfied FileMaker user and developer since 1991).
If worse comes to worse, I'll connect using VNC to my Windows machine (until I give it away to an 'un' lucky family member to do Access work). RDC beats the hell out of VNC for connecting to a Windows machine (probably because RDC is native Borg-ware). See this thread for more info:
http://forums.applenova.com/showthread.php?t=5194
Once again, I cannot say how much I appreciate these forums. I have been spending a lot of time lurking here picking up great advice. You guys are very nice to new people.We're glad to have you here, participating with interesting questions. There is a core base here that has been around many a Mac forum for many a year, and it's the cream of the crop. I look forward to your continued participation!