OT - the fun and games of "upgrading" (computerwise)

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I THINK I've got this figured out - but this message will confirm that - or not. This will be my 2,608th attempt to post to this group. Once again my fingers are crossed.
If you find a computer - and software compatible with it - that does what you want it to do, and come to know it and the software you've acquired for it like the back of your hand, there's a tendency to stick with it - while the rest of the world moves on.
I had unintentionally become a Computer System Neander - and the world was leaving me behind - as was Apple and Mac software. My old Mac G3 purchased in 1997 or maybe it was '98, won't run the newest versions of my frequently used software, nor any of the "new stuff" - like SketchUP. And Netscape 3.0 (how Neander is THAT?) can't, or has trouble viewing the content of more and more web sites.
SO - about three weeks ago - I headed down to the Apple Store and picked up a NEW Mac Mini - 6" x 6" x 2" - since I already had a flat screen display, keyboard and mouse. Five or six times faster and 1/30th the size of the old G3 - and it's so CUTE- silver gray sides and a white top -with a gray Apple Logo.
What happened should be familiar to anyone who has bought one of those fancy "easy to use" dovetail or mortise and tenon jigs. The Silver Tongued Devil who you saw demonstrate it made it look SO EASY, and so Idiot Proof, and so FAST and so ACCURATE.
Then YOU buy it, set it up and use it - just like you think you remember The Silver Tongued Devil did at The Show. That's when perception and reality often conflict.
Despite what The Silver Tongued Devil said - or heavily implied, and despite what The Brochure would have you believe, and despite what the various "reviews" in the woodworking magazines would have you believe - this thing AIN'T intuitive to use, nor EASY, FAST and ACCURATE - until YOU learn to use it EXACTLY as the manufacturer intended for you to use it.
With a computer system that's Stand Alone, migrating upward and learning a new User Interface (Apple's strong point) can be tricky. Add in an Internet Service Provider, totally unfamiliar downloaded software and an A/B Box so you can switch the monitor from Old System to New System and back - and you may drop into The Twilight Zone.
Seems while trying to "set up" the New Computer - and it's software, I somehow managed to screw up the Old Computer and it's mail and news settings. Suddenly, and mysteriously, I couldn't get to usenet news groups and couldn't send e-mail. Then I COULD get to usenet groups - but couldn't post messages - or send any e-mail.
Only took a bit over a week to be able to at least get to and view posts to the wreck and the woodturning news group, "making do" by spending time at WoodCentral to satisfy my Forum addiction. There I found a recomended Mac newsreader ThunderBird and the web browser FireFox recomended here and in other forums / groups.
Still haven't got my "old" capabilities working on the New Computer but I THINK I've recovered them on the Old Computer. Only this post will tell the tale.
charlie b crossing his fingers as he clicks on "Send Now" - and whispering "please, please, please work"
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*snip*
Good luck, charlie b! I'm typing this on my week-and-a-half old computer. For me it wasn't switching from classic Mac OS to OS X, it was going from XP to Vista. Vista has made improvements, but I've got to find everything again.
My previous computer was 4 1/2 years old, and it's going to be reformatted and passed on to my mother, who's laptop is 5 and starting to develop screen issues. Those hinges aren't made to withstand 5 years of opening and closing...
Puckdropper
--
You can only do so much with caulk, cardboard, and duct tape.

To email me directly, send a message to puckdropper (at) fastmail.fm
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On 12 May 2008 18:34:52 GMT, Puckdropper <puckdropper(at)yahoo(dot)com> wrote:>Good luck, charlie b! I'm typing this on my week-and-a-half old

I recently bought a $495 Acer laptop (a newegg.com "Special", $150 less than Staples!) with Windows Vista. I switched to "Classic" menus and window layout, and I'm quite happy.
I honestly don't see what the Vista slamming is about, other than it reminds me of the complaining when XP first was released. However, I don't upgrade an OS, I replace the machine. I'm sure true upgraders, with hot rodded hardware, have issues I can't even imagine...
I actually did look at a few MacBooks, but something comparable to this $500 Vista machine would cost me $1500, so I passed. I wanted a machine that would fit in my flight bag.
I figure with my $495 machine, I can run Open Office, all my 'net and flight planning s/w, and take it all with me, to suck on the free WiFi available at any small airport and most everywhere else.
My current desktop is 6 years old, and will remain in service.
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I have a Vista 3680-2633, about the same price with 2 GB Ram from Microcenter. Now I have had it for 6 months or so and installed a whole bunch of "nice" software, it does not want to install Vista SP1. I'll have to make an image then try reinstalling Vista, upgrade to SP1, then reinstall all my fucCtrlHCtrlHCtrlH nice software. GRUMPPHH!
--
Best regards
Han
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This and previously described phenomena plus a personal experience the other day are exactly what have driven me to Linux. I downloaded 8.04 the other day (free) and installed it on a 320gB HD I bought for $69. That could have conceivably been my only expenditure, but I gussied up the package with a $40 mobo and a $70 processor. The OS loaded right up, it's preloaded with FireFox (which I'd been using for a year or more), it found the internet just fine on my network, and it reads the other (XP) computers on the network. The XP computers don't see the Linux box (yet) but that's not the fault of Linux, per se.
The other day I took a HD I've had for a while (in fact I had loaded an earlier version of Linux on it a couple of weeks ago before I got the bigger HD) and loaded XP onto it. Then I had to register it. But the registration code I had didn't work, so I had to call tech support. It took almost 50 minutes sitting on the phone waiting for the tech guy to weave whatever magic they have to weave to get me a working reg key.
I'd been teetering on the "bye-bye m$" brink for a while, but now it's "never again." I'll need to find complementary apps to what I'd been used to on m$ stuff for the last 18 years, but then I've functionally had to do that at least three times along the way, anyway, and that doesn't count the C/PM, Applesoft, DOS3.3/4.01/5.0/6.22 transitions I had along the way, too.
The friggin' OS is free! It's stable. It's secure. It has a proven track record. You can be as GUIish as you want with it or play command line as much as you want. It doesn't fight you past the learning curve, which all the rest have, as well, by the way.
m$ wants $ for an obsolete OS (although it's still better, relatively speaking, than its replacement). By the way, I've been describing Vista as the new ME.
--
LRod

Master Woodbutcher and seasoned termite
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4ax.com:
<snipped for brevity>
I have some apps that like M$, but dislike Linux. Foremost is Quicken. Have you gotten something like wine (spelling?) to work? Getting rid of Vista may be getting to be a priority for me.
--
Best regards
Han
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I'm very early in my Linux journey. I haven't even begun trying emulators. Frankly, I'm probably going to concentrate on native Linux apps (forgot to mention, Open Office is packaged with the Linux I got--Ubuntu, for the record--it handles all the m$ orifice formats). Less trouble. Speak to some Mac people--they'll probably tell you the same thing.
Incidentally, I gave up on Quicken quite a while ago. I was an adopter in about 1990 and used it faithfully up until about Fall, '06. One of the ongoing problems was utter lack of support from Intuit. They are notorious for it. Check newsgroups geared toward them.
I've been using online banking which covers my needs (which are simple) so far. If I do eventually go back to accounting software, I'll find a native Linux app. But I don't know of any yet.
--
LRod

Master Woodbutcher and seasoned termite
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LRod wrote:

Try GNUcash I think it's called. Dual booting in my opinion is the only way to keep windows. Emulators really aren't the answer. But I haven't used a WinBlows product since win98. Not to mention no ADware, no Spyware, no trojans, no nada. I just installed virus detection on my new machine not because I had to. For the last 5 years I have had no virus detection, and no virus. Norton Virus Detection? whats that?
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"You can lead them to LINUX
but you can't make them THINK"
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Wow didn't realize so many folks are using LINUX. I still get what's LINUX? Anything putting a dent into WinBlow$ is a good thing.
--
"You can lead them to LINUX
but you can't make them THINK"
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Han wrote:

I'm running MoneyDance instead of Quicken, it has a native Linux version. Advantages: MoneyDance doesn't sunset it's software and lobotomize newer versions. Imports Quicken files, so the conversion is somewhat painless. Cheaper than Quicken. Scrolling and date auto-fill are much more intuitive and better than Quicken. Disadvantages: Some people have had some issues with on-line banking (I don't do that so I can't say). Investing management is somewhat less intuitive. Checkout www.moneydance.com, they do have a trial version.
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If you're going to be dumb, you better be tough

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Thanks for your replies, M&J, and LRod.
I did try Moneydance once, but the conversion from Quicken sucked, so I discarded it. I'm thinking about retiring, so then will be the time to switch, especially since I just acquired (late 2007) Q2008, and have to get my money's worth out of it!
Nobody using emulators yet?
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Han
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Han wrote:

Emulators work fine, however it seems silly to run Linux just so you can run Windows under an emulator. And since the video system is emulated in software you're limited in what you can run with acceptable performance.
If you mean WINE, WINE Is Not an Emulator. It is an attempt to provide the Windows API at a binary level on Unix. How well it works depends on the application--if it doesn't make any calls that aren't supported by the DLLs provided under WINE then it works fine. Personally I've found that it's more effort than it's worth. If you want to run Windows apps then run Windows--using Linux primarily to run Windows apps is like doing a tonsillectomy through the rectum.
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--John
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I agree, but I want to keep running some of my Windows apps, and Quicken is the most important. Since I am still employed, my work necessitates things like Acrobat (not just reader), the Office suite, a database program called Reference Manager, and more. When I retire, maybe that won't be necessary any more and I can play with some form of Linux with more sincerity. May be a year more, more or less ...
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Han
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Acrobat (not just reader), the Office suite,
All Mac
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I have to win the lottery to buy all new software. If I switch OS, I'll go open source and free.
My biggest mistake was buying my first PC. I did because I thought I could get help from a colleague who had a PC. Both the decision and the reason were probably wrong, but hey, so it goes!
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Han
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Even on my new windows machine I went with:
- Sun Open Office - Firefox - Thunderbird - My OLD version of Quicken
etc...
I need a good reason to pay up for new stuff, and I wasn't about to drop the cash for MS Office.
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wrote:

I understand, but I need the peace of mind to be able to work at home with software that is compatible with work and OO was not when I tried it.

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Han
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Han wrote:

Don't know when you last tried it Han, but it wouldn't be much of an expenditure of your time to try it again. Thus far, we have not run into any documents that aren't readable or that have any problems.
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If you're going to be dumb, you better be tough

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On Wed, 14 May 2008 18:49:31 -0700, Mark & Juanita

I myself had tried OO YEARS ago, and passed.
Upon trying OO again ~ 6 months ago, I'm a happy guy! <G>
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wrote:

THANKS! I should have known this when I bought this new laptop. But then, I recycled the Office 2003 from the old dead laptop, so no real expense this time <grin>. But now I know if I go and try Linux in some flavor.
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Han
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