Finally got my first Mac! Now what else to get?

Discussion in 'General Mac Discussion' started by iShater, May 23, 2003.

  1. iShater macrumors 604

    iShater

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2002
    Location:
    Chicagoland
    #1
    Yippeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee! :D :D :D :D

    I just bought my first Mac after more than a year of 'torment', getting two other people to switch, and coming 3 times close enough to getting one.

    Now, I am finally the proud owener of an iBook, 800Mhz combodrive machine! :D

    The inevitable questions for those who already own a machine like this:

    - what type of bag have you gotten that was reasonably priced and works well?
    - what extra accessories did you buy? (I got a logictech optical mouse)
    - any other advice?

    thank you! Yay yay yay! :D :D :D
     
  2. beatle888 macrumors 68000

    beatle888

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2002
    #2
    command (apple key) tab lets you cycle through the open applications.

    http://versiontracker.com

    for software updates.

    also go to apples web site for safari the apple browser.

    leave your applications in the application folder, if you want to organize them, make a folder called application aliases and make aliases (short cuts) of your apps and organize them within sub folders of this application aliases main folder. you dont HAVE to leave your apps in the app folder...but it seems best. for instance, apple checks the apps folder for their iapps during updates, if their not there than they wont be updated. if you dont use your battery that often make sure you atleast run your book off of the battery like say, once a week, just to keep it in shape so to speak. oh if your in a dialog box like the open and save dialog boxes, you can hold down the option button and click on the lower right corner of the window and resize the window as well as the columns. it only works in cocoa apps supposedly. have fun.

    oh another cool thing, i never have to close windows or apps when i put my computer to sleep. which is cool cause when i take my book out of my backpack and wake it up, everythings there, just as i left it ready to roll.
     
  3. shadowfax macrumors 603

    shadowfax

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2002
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    #3
    you're bringing back memories of when i switched back in november with a new Powerbook... great decision, i hope you enjoy your new laptop.

    dongles you may find useful:
    Meteorologist
    UptimeInMenuBar --this one is nice, if you like keeping track of the time since the last restart. you can add "printf("uptime: ");" to the line of code that's in the preference pane if you want, so it will show that it's your uptime and not just the clock or something.
    Spy--good little process monitor that's graphical.
    tinkertool--good for a number of things, the coolest of which is allowing you to put your dock to the left or right of the screen, instead of always in the centered position.

    good luck, and welcome!
     
  4. tazo macrumors 68040

    tazo

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2003
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest, Seattle, WA actually
    #4
    can't you already do that? I always have?
     
  5. Flowbee macrumors 68030

    Flowbee

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2002
    Location:
    Alameda, CA
    #5
    Max out the RAM. You'll notice quite a boost in performance (assuming you have 128mb now).

    Congrats!
     
  6. melchior macrumors 65816

    melchior

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2002
    #6
    i believe he is referring to 'pinning' your dock to the left or wherever. it is a funky feature.

    what else? theme that aqua and brushed metal! hehe, maybe you like it, eh?

    accessories? if you can afford it you might love a griffin powermate microsoft's products are shonky, don't use them unless you have to.

    have fun!
     
  7. FredAkbar macrumors 6502a

    FredAkbar

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2003
    Location:
    Santa Barbara, CA
    #7
    The built-in Dock preferences let you put the Dock vertically on the left or right sides of the screen. However, perhaps what Shadowfax meant was that TinkerTool lets you align the Dock differently...like, for example, you could have the Dock aligned to the left side, but still have it stuck to the bottom edge of the screen, like in this picture of the bottom-left corner of my screen...sorry, I don't really know how to describe it.

    --Fred
     

    Attached Files:

  8. shadowfax macrumors 603

    shadowfax

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2002
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    #8
    you guys are right about what i meant with tinkertool--it let's you pin to the left or right side of the screen when in the "bottom" horizontal mode in dock preferences, or the top or bottom sides when in the left/right vertical modes. i like it a lot better that way, with the dock in the bottom left, as it lets me keep my iTunes window in the bottom right. see the link in my sig if you want to see what i mean.

    [edit]bah, deskmod is dead lately--that link won't work for now. you'll have to wait till it comes back up, whenever that is.[/edit]
     
  9. shadowfax macrumors 603

    shadowfax

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2002
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    #9
    a few more worthwhile apps to check out:
    MenuMeters--i just use this one for its memory monitor, as i get the other stuff from other apps, but the memory monitor is useful.
    unsanity.com--this one has all kinds of neat little things to try out that will tweak your interface in various ways. you should read up on them and see if any sound worth it (if they cost money). personally, i think windowshade X is EXTREMELY useful and worth the 7$ it costs. cleardock is also cool (and free)-- you can change the dock BG color, or make it disappear (which is the best thing to to).
     
  10. tazo macrumors 68040

    tazo

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2003
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest, Seattle, WA actually
    #10
    Oh I am sorry I was confused. it just sounded like , put the dock on the left side. I didnt get bottom-left :) whoooooosh, anyway its getting late..
     
  11. melchior macrumors 65816

    melchior

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2002
    #11
    it's very cool, if you haven't used it before, or seen it for yourslelf you should check it out. personally i have the dock on the left, pinned to the bottom. and it transparent.
     
  12. Tequila Grandma macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 17, 2003
    Location:
    Boston MA
    #12
    I don't think anybody can really emphasize this too much. The difference between having 128mb (standard) and 640mb (maxed out) is amazing, and it's only about a $100 upgrade.

    I have one of those nifty incase slip cases for it. it protects the iBook flawlessly, and is quite easy to slip into my A/X messenger bag.

    Arigato,
    Brook
     
  13. maradong macrumors 65816

    maradong

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2003
    Location:
    Luxembourg
    #13
    Re: Finally got my first Mac! Now what else to get?

    happy to hear it , it s now time to chance the signature. :D
     
  14. iShater thread starter macrumors 604

    iShater

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2002
    Location:
    Chicagoland
    #14
    Re: Re: Finally got my first Mac! Now what else to get?

    Yes it is! :D
     
  15. iShater thread starter macrumors 604

    iShater

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2002
    Location:
    Chicagoland
    #15
    Yep, I am right now on the 128, and I can feel it taking a hit in performance. Hopefully in the next week or so I will add a 512 stick. :)
     
  16. Flickta macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2002
    Location:
    Born in USSR
    #16
    If you don't have a mouse, go for Logitech's MouseMan Traveler. Then use the Mouseware soft and set right button for control click and middle button for option click. That'll be very useful.

    As for the utils, also try FruitMenu. it is very good
     
  17. billyboy macrumors 65816

    billyboy

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2003
    Location:
    In my head
    #17
    I bet you're a happy one right now. Speaking as a switcher who had a nightmare two month introduction to Mac, and troubleshot software forever - thanks to a dodgy RAM chip - if you have one single kernel panic, it is not the norm at all, and I would say trouble shoot USB devices and RAM before you ever resort to reinstalling Jaguar. Jaguar has since been 99.9% reliable for me for 3 months, living up to the hype, and I am now able to do stuff on this PB I would never have dreamt of wasting ages struggling to learn in PC land.

    Id suggest getting into the habit of using MacJanitor (freeware) for daily and weekly maintenance - Jaguar Cache Cleaner about once a month on LIGHT CLEAN as well as the JCC Broadband optimiser function- and religiously run Repair Disk Permissions before and after installing new software. Back-up, back-up, and dont jump straight into updating every time Software Update winks at you.

    That's the "boring stuff". If you want real fun and peace of mind while learning about Mac , create a small play partition, mine is only 2.3GB loaded with OSX, and bit by bit, try out all the stuff from Apple, Versiontracker and the like. Some software causes conflicts, some hog the CPU, and better to know what they are about on a partition that doesnt stop you working. When you are happy something is OK, give it a few days at least, transfer it onto your working copy. Stuff that works for me:

    iClock for the the full date and time in the menu bar, drop-down international times plus alarm
    URL Manager Pro. Forget importing and udating bookmarks in each different browsers. This is a one time, easy to backup drag and drop bookmark library that is permanently accessible to all your browsers, one of which has to be Camino.
    MPlayer OSX - for most "PC type format" movie downloads, just drag the disc onto MPlayer and the movie will play in the corner of the screen or up to full size.

    I'd highly recommend the Gyration Gyro mouse - cordless optical, left right button and wheel, rechargable battery and cradle included, and it works in the air, which isnt a gimmick, it really makes it easy to run your DVD s from your armchair.

    Learn some Applescript, that is really fun, and hve a good time.
     
  18. maradong macrumors 65816

    maradong

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2003
    Location:
    Luxembourg
    #18
    Re: Re: Re: Finally got my first Mac! Now what else to get?

    :D

    by the way anybody got the name of a weather monitor ? which sits in the top right corner of the bar ? thx
     
  19. melchior macrumors 65816

    melchior

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2002
    #19
    Re: Re: Re: Re: Finally got my first Mac! Now what else to get?

    WeatherPop
     
  20. maradong macrumors 65816

    maradong

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2003
    Location:
    Luxembourg
  21. iShater thread starter macrumors 604

    iShater

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2002
    Location:
    Chicagoland
    #21
    Definitely my first step would be upgrading the RAM. I spent 6 hours yesterday (9PM until after 3AM) playing with this machine :D I still have tons to learn, it is amazing what stuff I am discovering, but I have no clue about the utils and the partitions yet.

    Are there stuff on the CDs that come with the system that I should look at?

    Oh, and that sleep light in the front, that is awesome! Man, I don't believe it took me soooooo long to finally get this iBook. I guess third time is the charm, and now I have it :D :D
     
  22. shadowfax macrumors 603

    shadowfax

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2002
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    #22
    lol. and free :D
     
  23. billyboy macrumors 65816

    billyboy

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2003
    Location:
    In my head
    #23
    Hey iShater, dont get ill from overtiredness. Too much of a good thing and all!

    RAM is a bit of a deal with OSX, the specs are super tight and even perfectly fine RAM sometimes wont meet the grade and so gives all sorts of subtle misfunctions that look like software problems. So buy the very best ie from Kingston or Crucial - Kingston is dearer than most, whereas Crucial is not the most expensive chip on the market.

    I am not a great fan of the Hardware checker disc. Dont get me wrong, it is powerful and will find faults, but so often I read - ran the Hardware checker, nothing reported wrong, therefore my hardware is perfect, time to reinstall Jaguar then. Firstly, it is best to run it at least 4 times. Secondly it, and all but the best software (which is not readily available to us consumers) is incapable of finding a "subtle" fault with RAM. The best troubleshoot to erase RAM from the equation is simply to pull out non-factory RAM.

    If you power on then immediately stick in the software DVD with the C key pushed down, that will get you into the Installer again. Dont install again! but look around the menu bar. You will find where you can change your password, and also there is Disk utility. The Disk Utility that is in Jaguar on your hard drive is more up to date, but if you cant boot up its not much use to you. The CD version will let you repair permissions and verify/repair the disk and get you back up and running. (Then you use the uptodate version to re-repair as well as can be done with OSX.)

    When you have finished looking around, just follow the prompts to reboot.

    You can also erase and partition your drive from Disk Utility. When or if you do it is up to you. Starting with reasons to partition - If you want to play around with dodgy utilities - like wot I do - then you would be better off with a partition, and probably sooner rather than later. If you use OS9, a separate partition is also logical ie would you have OSX and Windows on the same drive? Probably not! But that's what Classic is like IMO. The 2 Mac OS's are like chalk and cheese. I dont have OS9 loaded anywhere, but there is plenty of info on boards on how to get OS9 on its own without being Classic in OSX. Also, if you want to keep your data totally separate ie music, photos documents etc, and you dont have a second external HDD (the "best" way IMO) you can set up a data partition which is dead easy to back up.

    In principle and pretty much in practice, ALL you do with partitioning is erase ALL your data first, decide how many drives you want then drag a cursor to size them. Bingo. (Click the OS9 box when resizing - just in case you need to be able to use OS9) Be meticulous about erasing - When you have your partitions set up, erase each partition again before loading Jaguar onto the ones you want to be able to boot up. I think the latest CD lets you run 0's and 1's which some people suggest doing, but I dont think that is appropriate (its a privacy measure) andI cant see it is necessary for partitioning.

    With partitions you have the best of both worlds - ie a failure of one copy of OSX will only cripple the drive it is loaded on so you just switch to the other drive rather than be left with a dead computer AND the good bit is, when you are on drive A you can get to any app or file on any other drive. And if your hard drive is in good condition and OSX is working as it should, there is no visible compromise worth &%^t on perfomance.

    The big debate is usually - what size partitions, and don't partitions contradict the wisdom that OSX functions best on a huge single drive.

    Starting from the smallest, for OS9, if it is just sitting there "just in case" a piece of hardware doesnt have an OSX driver yet, or you need an alternative route in order to trash a hard-to-trash file, 1GB is plenty. For playing, a 3GB bootable partition is plenty.

    Then comes the million dollar question. How much for OSX on your working partition? For the smoothest ride and to cater to the "single drive is best" school, give it the maximum space possible. So.if you can get your data, which is after all what takes up the most space, on an external bootable HDD, I reckon that is ideal. With data on a separate internal partition, OSX with 10GBs of its own uninterrupted space worked pretty amazing for me.

    Hope that helps a bit more

    Andy
     
  24. Schiffi macrumors 6502a

    Schiffi

    Joined:
    May 22, 2003
    Location:
    Missouri
    #24
    As for me it seems my preferences are becoming corrupted faster than anything. Could someone recommend an app that identifies corrupted prefs?

    Back on subject.
    Cmd(the apple key)+shift+3 = desktop screenshot

    Macjanitor = get and run regularily

    Get VLC (www.videolan.com) for playing DVDs that occasionally become "jagged" (the technical term is interlaced)

    Mozilla is better than IE

    Personally I don't recommend graphical tweaking to the UI, but do what you like ;)

    I'd say get an external HD for backups. Currently I have one on backorder.

    Get a gamepad, or a full keyboard and mouse if you'll be playing any games. (I recommend USB Overdrive if you'll be using a gamepad/mouse. I currently have the middle mouse button configed to Cmd+q)

    If at first something doesn't work, immediately suspect the preferences. Delete the associated preferences and try the app again. If the prob persists, restore the deleted pref and try something else. Messengers have a nasty habit of corrupting their own prefs.

    Perform sys updates often.

    When I got my PowerBook, I created a seperate partition of 3.38GB for OS9. Of course my PBook can still boot into OS9 whereas I hear that the other new stuff can't. Though I still recommend the seperate partition thing, specfically because it's neater.
     

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