Sunday 7 May 2006

The new iMac. First-hand info.

I've just got my new iMac. Its 1.83 GHz, Dual core Intel with 512 Mb RAM and a 160 Gb hard disc.
You take it out of the box, connect power, keyboard and mouse, turn it on and it starts up. Everything is already installed, you just need to put in your name and other details and it starts.

I had already downloaded Boot Camp and the drivers for Windows. And had a WinXP DVD ready. So the first thing I did was to install Windows - on my Mac.

I set aside a 32 Gb partition. The WindowsXP installation took about an hour. Then I went on to install an anti-virus and anti-spyware software. AVGFree and SpyBotSD. Then Quicktime, and Adobe Acrobat. All this took another hour. O still have to put Winzip and other stuff.

But the windows 'side' works just like a PC. I could use USB sticks, listen to music, watch DVDs burn CDs - everything. And pretty snappy too.

Anyway, why exactly did I install Windows on my Mac? The main reason was to be able to browse on certain sites that are just not Mac-friendly yet. For instance. The Indian Railways reservation site, that simply doesn't go past the password screen. And you can't book tickets on. The HDFC bank site that doesn't show icons. The Indiatimes briefcase and e-mail site. And lots more that simply don't work fine with Safari. And there's no one to complain about.

Most sys admins and webmasters at these sites aren't even aware that the Mac has a different operating system When you call or write, their replies usually start with a "Go to your start menu, select Control panel and...". Even if you interject and say you have a Mac, they simply continue "Yes I know, just go to your start menu, select Control panel and..."

Actually, come to think of it, I once showed a movie on my PowerBook to this young MBA from IIM who had also studied Computer and Software Engineering and was working as a software person in NY. And her reaction was... "No start menu and the menu always stays on, where did you get this theme?". She thought it was a clever question till I told her I was running Unix with a proprietary GUI. And she shook her head as though I was just masquerading a good looking Linux build. But she had no clue about the fact that this was the classic MacOSX interface for nearly half a decade.

Now one doesn't have to face all this anymore. If it doesn't work on your Mac, and the world doesn't understand, just try it on your Mac - with Windows this time.

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