Help with devices/software for Mac Pro

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Titus, Nov 8, 2009.

  1. Titus macrumors member

    Nov 8, 2009
    I just ordered a Mac Pro. I also have a Dell 30 inch monitor.

    I've worked and played in the PC environment since the 80s and have never used anything "Apple" except my IPod/ITunes. The only software I had added was Mac version of Microsoft Office, MobileMe, and Aperture. I also have a new, high-end PC laptop and a recently acquired Dell PC.

    My set up at home is RoadRunner Cable with a Belkin router. I am now using Outlook Express as my primary home e-mail account.

    Both the PC and the new Mac Pro will be set up in my home office. I would I only ordered the Mac with one 1TB hard drive and thought I would use an external hard drive for backup.

    Here are my questions.
    1. Should I move to Airport Extreme as the router?
    2. What other software do you think is necessary or helpful? Specifically, I was told that there was a program called Parallel that could make the Mac into PC environment and I could load Windows 7 and all my compatible software. Does this cause problems?
    3. If I create documents in Mac Excel, Word, or pp version, will they open seamlessly on pc software?
    4. Considering a magic mouse.

    Remaining Budget: $1,500 and I qualify for academic discounts.

    Thank you anyone who can help. I don't want to waste money but time and efficiency is money. I am a college professor, CPA, and an online class design consultant.
  2. Hellhammer Moderator


    Staff Member

    Dec 10, 2008
    1. Try your Belkin first. I have D-Link with zero problems

    2. Yes, there are Parallels and Fusion for running Windows at the same time as OS X. Also check out VirtualBox, it's free! 3D work might be slower than running Windows with BootCamp because Parallels and Fusion have poor support for 3D, but as you have Mac Pro, it should work flawlessly

    3. Yes, even iWork documents can be saved as Office files so they work in Windows too. Check out OpenOffice too, it's free!
  3. mattyb240 macrumors 6502a

    May 11, 2008
    Router is just preference, if you are happy with what you have then stick with it.

    You can get parralles or VMware fusion, do a google and you will find plenty of info. I personally prefer VMware. Both are easy to setup and seemless, failing this you can also use bootcamp.

    Office should also work seamlessly although I have not experienced problems some others may have.

    Magic Mouse is again preference go and have a play and see what you think!
  4. snberk103 macrumors 603

    Oct 22, 2007
    An Island in the Salish Sea
    I have VMWare Fusion, but Parallels is also well regarded. They each have free trials so you can try them out. If you have a friend with a Mac who is your unofficial support, then its easier to get what they have. That way when you call them to ask how to do something, they can pull up the same screen to look at it. There are other applications that will allow them to connect into your system, and look at your actual computer, but I think the fast majority of issues are resolved with your support person looking at the program dialogue on their system and telling you to try clicking on the option you hadn't noticed yet.

    Same thing goes for office suites. There is MS Office, NeoOffice (a version of OpenOffice), OpenOffice, and iWork. Try them all, they mostly have trials. See what your support person likes to use.

    Good Luck.
  5. tri3limited macrumors 6502

    Jun 5, 2008
    As you're getting Aperture, why not a DSLR as well?

    Other suggestions include;
    Adobe CS4 - Which ever suite tickles your fancy?
    Final Cut Studio - If you like the idea of video.
    Logic Studio - If you like the idea of audio.
    Second Monitor - Twice the workspace.
    A/Better Printer
    Another internal HDD? Not a huge amount of point backing up externally when you can add a standard internal HDD and backup to that. You could also then use one HDD formatted solely for Windows and run Bootcamp for best performance.

    From what you mention about your profession my best advice would be to go for the second monitor as well as the Adobe CS4 Design Suite. The other suggestions are mainly just to test the waters.
  6. Titus thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 8, 2009
    I have a Canon DSLR and a Canon Pro 9000 Printer, a new HP C8180 all in one, CS3 for Windows, a second monitor (24 inch), Office Professional for Windows, Quickbooks Pro for Windows, wireless keyboards, mice, Bose speakers, HD video camera, and a bunch of software for Windows.

    From what I've read so far, it doesn't look like I'll get a new modem until I see how this one performs with the Mac. It also looks like I'll buy Parallels and pay for a Geek to come over and set everything up.

    Hmmm.......other women are shopping in the mall, I'm looking to buy new electronics. :)

    Thank you for your replies.
  7. ildondeigiocchi macrumors 6502a


    Dec 30, 2007
    I suggest you buy an Intel X-25M SSD and make it your boot drive. Then, buy 2 HDD's and raid them to run your apps and for storage. Buy another HDD for timemachine backup and another HDD for Windows... and then you got yourself a beast of a system that will rock your world and chew any software you throw at it :D

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