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View Full Version : Goin Mac for the first time.


Cheap-Chopstix
Aug 15, 2003, 10:39 PM
I have finally made the decision to go Mac and leave the darkside.

Well anyways I'm in the market for a notebook for college. I think I pretty much narrowed it down to the 12 inch powerbook. It seems to have all the features I'm looking for in a laptop and with an education discounto it leaves me with some cash to get an airport extreme card and wireless router. Now I'm just wondering if I went for a non-apple wireless router like a "Linksys Wireless-G Broadband Router ." Will it work or will there need to be something extra I will need to configure for it to talk to the mac?

Peas out.

arn
Aug 15, 2003, 10:42 PM
Originally posted by Cheap-Chopstix
Now I'm just wondering if I went for a non-apple wireless router like a "Linksys Wireless-G Broadband Router ." Will it work or will there need to be something extra I will need to configure for it to talk to the mac?


Should work out fine. I have the older Linksys Wirelsss router (non-G). Interface is via a web interface... so no issues with compatability.

The only thing u might run into is I don't think Linksys releases "official" firmware updates for the Mac side... but there are easy ways to install the patches. See versiontracker. (this may have changed recently, I haven't kept up)

In general, you don't need to firmware upgrade unless you're having problems.


arn

hugemullens
Aug 15, 2003, 10:45 PM
I use a d-link wireless router, so you shouldnt have a problem. 802.11b and 802.11g are open standards, so you shouldnt have any issues.

Powerbook G5
Aug 16, 2003, 01:14 AM
...and once you go Mac, you don't go back! ;) Sorry, couldn't resist. On topic, though, we use a Linksys for our home network and it works really well, haven't had a single problem with it.

KershMan
Aug 16, 2003, 08:50 AM
You can use the web interface to make the firmware upgrades as well. You will download a .bin file from the Linksys site as needed. Then in the web interface, I believe under the Setup tab, you can choose the file for upgrade. The web interface will do the rest.

Cheap-Chopstix
Aug 17, 2003, 11:19 AM
Thanks for the info guys. I already have a 4 port wired linksys router and was wondering if there was an option to add wireless to the router i already have instead of dishin out cash for another 4 port wireless router thats just gonna get connected through the wired one anyways.

BenWakin
Aug 17, 2003, 01:58 PM
Congrats on the conversion. I recently purchased a 12" iBook for college. It's great. The Powerbook 12" would have been too much for me, and the 14" iBook didn't appeal to me as much as the little 12". So yeah, go for the 12" iBook. It's perfect for college, in my opinion.

ima_pseudonym
Aug 17, 2003, 03:52 PM
if you are getting the 12" powerbook, do try to wait for the revision to come out. The 12" is pretty good, but it is really crippled compared to the other books. There may be a slight price $100-$200 when the updates come out, but if they add cache, a slightly faster processor, usb 2, etc, and/or manage to reduce the hear under the wrist rest, then it will be well worth it. Remember that you are buying a machine now to run software that will be coming out 2 years from now, and the 12" powerbook hasn't changed in almost 8 months.

ColoJohnBoy
Aug 17, 2003, 05:52 PM
Follow Mr. Psuedonym's advice. Wait until Tuesday or Wednesday, just to be doubly sure that no updates are released then. You'll be kicking yourself if they fall right outside the 10 day window, otherwise.

BrandonRP0123
Aug 22, 2003, 01:18 AM
I was using a Cisco 340AP wireless access point up until 2 weeks ago (go Snow Airport!). The truth? The airport macs in the house worked better and were easier to get going with it than the PC with the farallon (now Proxim) skyline 11Mbps Mac/PC 802.11 card. This is also true for the Linksys models (mentioned), D-Link, and Netgears (I've had my macs connected to all of the above just by making sure they can pick up the signal, and then entering the WEP key/password if needed)

BrandonRP0123
Aug 22, 2003, 01:22 AM
Originally posted by ima_pseudonym
if you are getting the 12" powerbook, do try to wait for the revision to come out. The 12" is pretty good, but it is really crippled compared to the other books. There may be a slight price $100-$200 when the updates come out, but if they add cache, a slightly faster processor, usb 2, etc, and/or manage to reduce the hear under the wrist rest, then it will be well worth it. Remember that you are buying a machine now to run software that will be coming out 2 years from now, and the 12" powerbook hasn't changed in almost 8 months.

The wear under the wrist rest is just your oily skin tarnishing the AI (as I'm starting to notice it on mine too). The 12.1 is zippy enough (considering the machine that it replaced was my iBook 500), and despite the cache seems to perform just about identically with my buddy's 867Mhz TiBook. This of course, achieved by MacMAME, photoshop, illustrator, and various other tests.

BrandonRP0123
Aug 22, 2003, 01:23 AM
Originally posted by BrandonRP0123
The wear under the wrist rest is just your oily skin tarnishing the AI (as I'm starting to notice it on mine too).


I wonder if something like silver polish (or AI polish) would help this.

Anyone with a 12.1 AI have any luck?

jxyama
Aug 22, 2003, 09:46 AM
First of all, it's aluminum (or aluminium) so Al, not AI. Minor point, but anyway...

I would read the Al polisher's directions to see if it can be applied to anodized surface. Anodized layer is very hard and glass clear. If you have some minor stains on the surface, simply wiping them really well with non-abrasive cloth should take care of it. I'm not sure about using anything abrasive - anodized layer is so hard that should be quite abrasion resistent, but I wouldn't try it on mine...

mactastic
Aug 22, 2003, 11:04 AM
I do have to say though, unless you are going to get a network (ethernet) printer, it's real nice to be able to print wirelessly through the AE base station.

Matt88
Aug 22, 2003, 11:12 AM
I also order my 12" through an academic outlet - they were out of stock on the 'book, but I got my iPod, Printer, and a new wireless router. As of a phone call this morning, they say at *least* another ten days before it comes in... (I ordered on August 1st).

This will be my first Mac though - I'm excited. I've wanted to switch for some time, but never had the oppertunity. I'm doing my Masters in Music, so I'll fit right in with a powerbook (once it comes!!!) All that to say I'm another switcher... this forum has been a valuable resource for me!

Thanks,

Matt

Squire
Aug 22, 2003, 11:14 AM
Here's an interesting article about the Airport. Forbes had nothing but praise for it except for some problems sending signals through concrete.

http://www.forbes.com/execpicks/2003/08/20/cx_pm_0820tentech.html

Squire

stevil
Aug 22, 2003, 02:05 PM
We picked up our first Mac two days ago (12" powerbook). I got the airport extreme and it works perfectly with my new Belkin wireless G router ($129 at circuit city). Configuration was pretty easy. I'd recommend upgrading the firmware right away as you get some performance increase. The router was painless to set up - it has a nice web interface, and the security pieces were very easy too.

If it's not critical to get the PB right away, I'd wait and see, but you should set some kind of date for yourself so you don't drive yourself crazy.

We love our powerbook and have no regrets on not waiting any longer based on rumor and speculation.

jayb2000
Aug 22, 2003, 03:11 PM
I have looked that the PBs and the 12 seems great for school.
I would be slightly concerned about the update schedule, but there will always be something new coming, that's the nature of computers.
Besides, with it being introduced this year, new versions probably won't be hugely different, just spend the money to max the ram and be happy with it.

As far as the wireless stuff goes, I have an airport extreme base station with the following attached:
Regular Airport in an iMac 400mhz running OS X
Compaq Multiport 2000 on compaq laptop running win XP
Netgear 802.11g pcmcia shared between two dell and nec laptops, one xp, one 2k
Linksys PCI 802.11g (just got it, still having problems) in a HP Kayak running w2k

The linksys is the only one that is having problems, it does not seem to see the base station, I have a new driver, just need to try it out. :mad: Hopefully its just a driver issue.

Good Luck with college and the new PB.