Wednesday, 28 November 2007
|2222 - Mac users should get Leopard, RIGHT NOW|
Leopard has a killer app that is worth the upgrade price and a little more hardware cost. It's called Time Machine.
You know how everyone is always telling you that you need to back up your data? Time Machine makes it painless and automatic. You need another disk drive to put the backup on, but those are dirt cheap these days; we got vakkotaur's parents a 500 GB USB drive for $139 that will hold all of their backups for decades. Once you set it up, you never have to worry about it again. It happens automagically, in the background, and you don't have to do a thing.
Restores are simple, and use an intuitive interface that lets you move backward and forward in time to the point you want to restore from. Once you pick a time, you select the files you want to restore and tell it to go, and it does the rest. The system keeps hourly backups for a day, daily backups for a month, and as many weekly backups as your backup disk will hold.
When I lost a hard disk last year, and all of my data with it, I decided I wouldn't be in that position again. I bought a second hard disk for the machine, and set it up as a mirrored drive so there would be two identical copies. The new machine was ordered with a second drive for the same purpose. I just undid that, and set up Time Machine instead. It won't be up-to-the-minute accurate, but it will also save me from the "oops, I deleted the wrong file" kinds of problems, and that's more important.
If you have a Mac, you need Leopard, and you need to set up Time Machine. Now. Before you do anything else. If you don't have a Mac, get one.
current mood: impressed
I have Leopard, but I only have one hard drive. I'd love to try out "Time Machine" as soon as I get a Firewire drive.
Even though I've already encountered workspaces in X desktops, I love "Spaces." I primarily work from my MacBook Pro, so screen space is limited.
Three words for all the *nix geeks: tabbed terminal windows!
Go buy a drive. It's worth it. I bought a USB 2.0 portable drive to go with my MacBook Pro; it now lives in my briefcase along with the computer.
I'd been using VirtueDesktops, and before that CodeTek Virtual Desktop Pro, but I ripped that out when I put Leopard in. Spaces gets it right, especially dealing with applications that are pinned to certain spaces (which is how I organize things). I wish Spaces allowed different transitions than a slide from one to the next, but that's a minor detail.
I think I'm going to stick with iTerm. Terminal in Leopard is a lot better, but it doesn't handle VT220 line-drawing characters correctly, and that's a feature I miss (slrn uses them to show threading); it also doesn't quite make my 3270 font look right.
I was planning on going to Terminal (from iTerm) for Leopard until I found out about the line-drawing chars (which I believe mutt also uses for threading). Guess I shouldn't fix something that's not broken, then! In fact, that was one major reason I stopped using Terminal in the first place.
Apple gets so much right. Too bad OS X seems to lack a means of readily being made tolerable to look at. I have no desire to be stuck staring at pain-inducing eye-strain causing retina-searing white-hot backgrounds.
Way to avoid buying a drive + getting more features
I read (aloud) your comments to my husband who is now employed LLNL.
I read your first sentence...before I got to 11th word he said.."Time Machine!"(woo hoo) with great enthusiasm. He was in COMPLETE agreement with you.
In addition,I was treated me to a long lecture on the problems inherent with anyone at a that would use windows and expect it be secure.
It was truly stunning
I asked him to join your LJ because you & he may have some good discourse.
Mac World here in SF is coming in Jan...are you attending?
He's right about Windows. It's inherently insecure by design, because being secure would break older applications. I don't run it unless I absolutely have to, and then I keep it the hell off the Internet.
One one consulting engagement not long ago, the customer said they knew they were dealing with a real techie, because I carry a Mac.
I've never been to a MacWorld, and have no particular plans to go...not sure I'd get anything out of it. Of course, if someone were to pay to have the Tron Guy show up...:-)
As soon as Fink is stable enough for Leopard, I'll upgrade the Intel Macs. I probably won't change my current backup strategy, but with 500GB hard drives costing $110, it's not expensive to experiment with Time Machine.
For my laptop, if the hard drive breaks, all I do is transfer the backup drive to the carrier and pop it into the laptop. Then I go get a new hard drive of the same or bigger capacity and start the backup over again. I wonder how Time Machine handles device losses (ie, do I reinstall MacOS X and then restore?)
You can restore a system from a Time Machine backup. Boot the Leopard install DVD, then click on the Utilities menu, and Time Machine is one of the choices. From there, you can select a full restore, and it will do the right thing.