New to Forum - Looking for Guidance

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by drlund, Apr 2, 2007.

  1. drlund macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2007
    Location:
    Naples, FL
    #1
    Hi All,

    I have been a Mac user for many years and have generally been pretty self-sufficient - up until now. Here is my current frustration:

    My wife and I are both Realtors in Naples, Florida and have always been able to find a workaround to allow us to use our Mac PowerBook G4s (along with either Safari or Firefox) to access our local MLS (Multiple Listing Service). Recently however our local Board of Realtors technical support groups have implemented "proprietary enhancements" that have effectively "broken" our Mac-based use of some basic functionality within our MLS.

    Right now we are forced to use Virtual PC for much of our daily MLS access, and are becoming increasingly annoyed/frustrated with this approach. Our requests for any Mac-specific assistance fall on deaf ears at our Board of Realtors where they repeat the mantra of a "WinTel/IE only" supported platform.

    We have already implemented the available User Agent Switcher (Firefox) and Debug/User Agent (Safari) cloaking options to get by our MLS Gatekeeper which dictates IE 6 or above for initial signon access. Once successfully logged onto our MLS, though, we encounter inconsistent results performing basic property search functions; some less-used (unenhanced) functionality still works perfectly, while critical newly-enhanced searches will simply not execute at all.

    At this point I am simply looking for advice and guidance from this forum on how to proceed with diagnosis of what we are facing. My suspicion is that there are inconsistent Javascript and/or aspx issues behind the scenes but that is admittedly only my speculation.

    How can my wife and I remain Mac bigots and still get our essential MLS property searches accomplished without going over to the dark side? I am willing to try any recommended approaches and/or to assist with any potential diagnostic procedures suggested by the forum.

    Thanks so much!

    Dean
     
  2. PlaceofDis macrumors Core

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
    #2
    were i in this position, i would look at upgrading to one of the MBP/MB.
    you'll be able to run window's in parallels, which is no where near the drag that Virtual PC is. its not the best solution in the world, yes. but its better then the current situation, imo.
     
  3. srf4real macrumors 68030

    srf4real

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2006
    Location:
    paradise beach FL
    #3
    I have to deal with this at my work's website, as well. Have you tried Netscape browser?
     
  4. BilltheCat macrumors regular

    BilltheCat

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2007
    Location:
    Sanford FL
    #4
    You are realtors yes?

    and your board is not supporting you! I would complain loud and long about the 'new enhancements' and that they are the problem NOT that you use a Mac.

    You pay dues and fees for the support of your board. You deserve to get what you have paid for. Bill Gates loves that enchancements like this shut out Mac users. It may even be illegal to use 'enhancements' that require you to use a proprietary inferior browser and OS.

    Are you the only Realtors using Macs? Probably not! Realtors are intelligent and windoze is an inferior product.

    Like I said, Bintch loudly! I would anyway.
     
  5. Schroedinger macrumors regular

    Schroedinger

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2004
    Location:
    Baltimore, MD
    #5
    I have an idea, but it's a little involved. If you are just using these laptops to access this service at your office, or at home, you could set up a windows box there, some cheapo desktop, and then use VNC on your laptops to control the windows box.

    VNC, if you're not familiar, allows you to remotely operate a given machine. Your laptop screen would mirror the windows desktop screen, so you would be using windows to access this service, but you would be remotely using the windows machine from your laptop. It's open source, so it's free, but set up does take a little tech savvy.

    I'm not familiar with realty, so let me add that I think this would only work if you looked up information from time to time, rarely at the same time, and didn't need the access when you're away from home base. Otherwise, I think the suggestion above of getting a new intel mac laptop is best. Without even using bootcamp, you can run windows in Parallels. That way you're in your OSX environment with one window running the webbrowser in windows in Parallels. More expensive, but a more elegant solution.

    best of luck
     
  6. drlund thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2007
    Location:
    Naples, FL
    #6
    Thanks to All

    Thanks so much to all who posted responses this week. Much appreciated!

    At this point if appears as though a MBP/Parallels solution might be the best way for us to go. Those additional hardware acquisition costs (we need TWO for our team) were certainly not in our 2007 business plan though. :)

    Great forum!!
     
  7. srf4real macrumors 68030

    srf4real

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2006
    Location:
    paradise beach FL
    #7
    I'll bet, especially the way real estate is moving in Florida right now.:(
     
  8. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #8
    Believe me, that battle was waged and lost years ago. Most REBs on the continent drank the Gaterade.

    The software is highly proprietary, and they don't want to rewrite it to support non ActiveX platforms, which would be non trivial, to say the least.
     
  9. drlund thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2007
    Location:
    Naples, FL
    #9
    EUREKA! New Information Update

    Just wanted to update the many forum responders who offered their assistance to me back in early April, along with providing some possible hope and encouragement to others dealing with similar frustrations.

    I have been pleasently surprised this week by how well the Opera 9.21 browser plays with our local Realtor MLS system. Using Opera my wife and I have been able to totally avoid using Virtual PC to access our MLS, and have been able to successfully conduct those "enhanced" search functions which were "broken" recently using Safari, Firefox, and/or Netscape browsers.

    I did have to modify the specific site preferences for our MLS site by using Opera's Quick Preferences menu option and choosing "Mask as Internet Explorer" in the network pane. With a few minor print formatting issues this has proved to be a very viable workaround, at least for now.

    Now if some forum member would just refer us a few potential buyers who want to own real estate in beautiful Naples, Florida we might be able to justify (or at least rationalize) those two MBP purchases suggested as the optimal solution to the technical issues we have encountered with our local MLS! ;)

    Thanks again to all who offered their assistance!

    Dean
     

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