Sunday, 27 May 2007

A Tips for New Mac Users

A nice tip for new Mac users is to not touch any crucial files that is needed by an application. Why? Here are a few examples:

1) Microsoft Folder in Documents. Whilst people like to organise folders themselves, a few folders, such as this one, should not be touched. This is because Microsoft Office needs to locate the files here in order to work and moving it will cause problems for the application.

2) Sometimes you'll find files that appear from nowhere with strange extensions. Don't just delete these because they look suspicious, google them as sometimes, little important files like to unhide themselves.

3) I would say this is the most important rule as a lot of people make this mistake and a lot of the time it can be very costly. Do not ever, under any circumstance, organise the iPhoto library from within Finder. (The Mac equivalent of Windows Explorer) Always adjust your files from within iPhoto unless they're referenced in their original location. Editing the file names etc. can mess up the way iPhoto works and may lead to you having to start from scratch. If you need to access a photo export it from iPhoto or you can locate it from the iPhoto library and COPY it. Just leave the original file.

The 3rd mistake is a very common one made so I hope that this post will help clarify that unless it's something you created yourself and know what programs rely on it, DON'T TOUCH IT!

Saturday, 5 May 2007

Vista on Boot Camp and Parallels


In my previous entry I stated I was installing Vista and how much trouble it was. Now I'm going to quickly explain how well it runs and if it's worth installing.

Boot Camp

First off will be on Boot Camp.

In order to install Vista I had to format my FAT32 drive to NTFS. This means that I can no longer write (copy to) my Windows partition anymore, like I previously could with XP. There is always Macdrive 7, but I don't have the money for that at the moment. A free alternative is MacFuse, except I have heard that isn't very fast. I'm not exactly desperate for copying files to Windows at the moment anyway.

Vista seems to perform relatively well on my Macbook 1.83 GHZ with 2 GB RAM. It gets a performance rating of around 3 (rated by Windows of course) and I have all the eye-candy turned on. (Aero effects and such) Everything seemed to be ok. Any problems is to do with Vista and not Boot Camp.

The Boot Camp drivers installed as normal, and I have yet to find anything different. (Touchpad clicking still doesn't work)


Vista on Parallels was almost a completely different experience.

It installed flawlessly. Much better than Boot Camp. That was pretty much it. I'll say it early on, if you're planning on running Vista on Parallels I wouldn't recommend it. It runs pretty bad.

Because of the lack of Graphic Emulation in Parallels, everything runs in software mode. Meaning no Aero effects making Vista the same as XP. Or you'd think. A lot of things run very slow. I tried playing a game of Solitare and it lagged so bad it took me 3 sec to navigate to the close button.

I've delegated more resources to Parallels so that when I use it, it won't be as hard to use, but it's still a disappointment. But with the exception of performance, Vista seemed ok.


Most people wouldn't even consider upgrading to Vista, let alone trying to run it on their Macs. But I always like to try out new things and took the plunge, which leads me to the conclusion, if you plan on running Vista on your Mac, stick with Boot Camp.