about_macs.doc

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about_macs.doc

  1. 1. Outstanding reasons are in bold Technichal Reasons to Hate Macs One mouse button, less functions Some Macs have monitors built in to the machine, bad if you need to replace or upgrade the monitor Hardly any software available for Macs compared to software available to PCs Hardly any hardware available for Macs compared to hardware available to PCs Existing hardware/software for Mac is usually very costly Macs themselves are very overpriced Macs are at a huge disadvantage for business uses Only one choice of operating system Almost all drive additions are external No such thing as an "internal modem" with a Mac Most software you will probably buy for a Mac is from a mail order catalog(pay shipping, wait) The subject of games on a Mac is a frontier larger than America in 1492 Market share of Macs is extremely low, and declining (That means Mac users are an endangered species) Fewer ports behind a Mac, can't add most ports via expansion cards Far less Mac developers compared to the amount of PC developers(Probably more Java developers than Mac) Few ISPs provide access for Macs The "IBM-Compatible" Macs were the most sorry excuse for a clone No such thing as a visible file extension for a Mac
  2. 2. Automatic eject floppy drive works very illogically, manual button much simpler Many public schools are shifting from Macs to PCs, less market share, but smarter kids Macs take forever to boot up PowerBooks catching fire Can't have wallpaper backgrounds Macs have slower CD-ROM drives(Even high end Macs come with 4x, and PC users can enjoy 12x and soon DVD) Macs only use SCSI-2, no UltraSCSI, IDE, ect. Macs lack preemptive multitasking (has cooperative multitasking like win) (OS X – carbon applications are cooperative; cocoa apps are preemptive) The Mac OS is 12 years old Apple is in terrible financial condition Apple related companies are also floundering Philosophical Reasons to Hate Macs Mac users are easily offended (No doubt about this one) Little babies like Macs (corny kid software abundant) Most rich snobs use Macs Any computer that smiles at you can't be good If you make a computer that morons can use, only morons will want to use it The Apple Macintosh logo is a rainbow-striped fruit, suggesting.... Squishy Bearz hate Macs Macs have a reputation as the "Family Computer" (Blegh)
  3. 3. Dave Thomas (Satan) uses a Mac to record all of his junior bacon cheeseburgers sold (15 so far) Your friends (if any) will mock you for owning a Mac (OS 10.2 = jaguar) Pros OS X Protected memory Real multitasking SMB file sharing Cons OS X Apple Mail Sluggishness Mouse sluggishness Java script problem Cons G* G5 software control of fans 128 MB RAM not enough to run OS X and several apps simultaneously G4 noise G4 lack of DDR
  4. 4. Bad customer support DVD problem G4 "Unusable..." NO_VALUE on 25-Oct-2002 09:22:00 PM I have been through two of these machines in a time span of about three weeks. The first was the dual 1ghz. Approximately 5 minutes after the first boot up it expereinces a black screen kernel panic of doom. Various kernel panics persist constantly for a week, during which time I have to abandon all work and preform multiple re-installs, etc... as directed by apple tech support. I return the machine to my retailer and pruchase the dual 867, all of the previous issues repeated, machine returned. My old powerbook G3 runs 10.2 from the dual G4 box without a single similliar fault. "Windows XP/Apple" namtih12222222@yahoo.com on 12-Aug-2002 06:02:00 AM •Hot Issue: 88352 G4 QS (2002) - NVRAM must be reset to allow unit to boot. •Hot Issue: Power Mac G4 (QuickSilver 2002) - The computer starts up to a flashing question mark •Hot Issue: Power Mac G4 (QuickSilver 2002) - Microprocessor Issue Detected During Startup •Hot Issue: Keyboard failures on G4 QuickSilver 733 and 867 units •Hot Issue: Power Mac G4 (QuickSilver 2002): EFFA No Power
  5. 5. The Best Way To Optimize Mac OS X... May 25th, 2001 Mac OS X is a wonderful operating system; it has a raft of innovative new features (like the dock), easy access to the power of Unix and all its industrial-strength serving applications (like Apache), the famous Mac ease of use, and some of the most delicious eye candy ever seen outside of a science fiction movie (hmmm... Aqua). But all is not perfect just yet. One of the biggest and most oft-voiced criticisms of the new OS is its lack of speed and responsiveness. Despite all the good things about Mac OS X many users find themselves switching back to Mac OS 9 because they are frustrated. "Things are simply faster in 9", they say. "I spend half of my time watching the spinning rainbow (busy) cursor," they say. In this edition of Hot Cocoa I will talk about some ways in which I personally have overcome these frustrations. The tips I offer here won't work for everybody, although they certainly will help some. I offer them to illustrate a larger point and hopefully to encourage people to persist with Mac OS X even if they feel that it is a barrier to their productivity at first. The point is this: often the best way to optimize a system is not to install the latest software shortcut, or upgrade to the latest hardware; rather, it is the optimization of usage habits that a user can make as he or she becomes more familiar with the operating environment. This takes time. Use Mac OS X for a week and you might decide that you hate it; use it for a month and you'll find dozens of ways to work around the things that annoy you; use it for three months and you'll have forgotten what it was like to work under 9 -- you'll be working in ways that you never even thought of before, and perhaps you won't even be seeing that dreaded spinning rainbow cursor at all.
  6. 6. So now, on with the show... I'll list the various things that I initially found frustrating about Mac OS X and then provide explanations of how I addressed the issues. Complaint: I thought this thing had preemptive multitasking! One of Mac OS X's selling points is that it has fully preemptive multitasking. This means that the machine will keep on chugging along even if one process wants to be greedy and hog the CPU. Movies will keep playing smoothly while files are decompressing; progress bars continue to update while menus are down; you can switch to other applications and work with them while other applications are launching. Why this rainbow busy cursor all the time? This is the cursor that Mac OS X displays while the front most application is busy doing something and is not ready to receive user input. Users get frustrated waiting for it to go away because it impedes their workflow. "So much for preemptive multitasking; I seem to spend most of my time waiting!" Solution: do some multitasking yourself! Notice that even when the rainbow cursor appears that other apps continue to run smoothly under Mac OS X. Even if the Finder locks up for minutes at a time, you can mouse over the dock and note that the textual labels still pop up instantly and you can switch to other apps. Unlike under OS 9, the machine as a whole rarely locks up; it's mostly only individual apps that become unresponsive.
  7. 7. So the solution is to take care of the multitasking yourself. If one app is busy, switch to another and do something else. Run a lot of apps at once. Keep multiple tasks in progress at any one time. This might require a bit of adjustment to your usage habits, but it will be worth it. When I was using Mac OS X a few months ago I think I spent about a quarter of all my time waiting for the busy cursor to go away. Nowadays I spend only a few seconds each day waiting for it. Complaint: The Finder is slowwwww! Many people complain about the Finder's speed: Window resizing is slow; there are a lot of busy cursors; there are delays before new windows appear, and so forth. Given that the Finder is one of the most heavily-used applications in any user's arsenal this presents a bit of a problem. Many of the Finder's problems stem from the fact that it is written using Carbon rather than Mac OS X's much more mature Cocoa API. Apple wanted to show that it could "eat its own dog food" and code something major with Carbon; unfortunately for us, they chose one of the apps that we rely on the most. So how do we tackle the problem? Solution: Reduce your dependency on the Finder Painful but true: we have to reduce our reliance on the Finder. Learn to use all of Mac OS X's shortcuts and tricks for opening and organizing files. Use the "Recent items" submenu in the Apple menu as much as possible, or the recent items menus offered within individual applications. Put shortcuts in the dock (you could put applications in the dock, or a folder
  8. 8. containing shortcuts to all of your favorite items). Learn to use the command line interface (the Terminal) -- some operations are much faster in it. Make the most of docklings -- these are little apps which run in the dock and handle simple tasks like going to specific panes in the System Preferences application. Learn about third party tools, like the excellent DragThing -- some of these can be real time savers. Finally, and most obviously, take the time to set up the Finder exactly as you want it. The first few weeks (and even months) you'll be rearranging icons, resizing columns and windows, agonizingly copying files and folders, and customizing toolbars. But once this is done, using the Finder should become more and more pleasant; especially seeing as you'll have developed so many other strategies for performing tasks that you won't need the Finder much anyway. Complaint: Apps take ages to launch Under Mac OS 9 the really big applications -- Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator and the like -- took a long time to launch but pretty much everything else launched very snappily. Under Mac OS X things are different. Apps like Photoshop are Classic apps and they can take more than a minute to launch if the Classic environment is not already running. Other (non-Classic) apps still entail seemingly interminable waits at times. People pass the time counting the number of dock bounces an app takes to launch. Solution: Think "Unix"
  9. 9. Mac OS X runs on a Unix core and this has several implications. One is that many apps are slow to launch. I have used many Unix operating systems over the years, and although they boast amazing stability and reliability, their launch times are often disappointing. But what do they offer in return and how can we take advantage of it? Obviously, if apps take ages to launch then we shouldn't launch them often. "Launch 'em and leave 'em," I say. Unlike Mac OS 9, Mac OS X's modern virtual memory system should enable you to leave as many apps running at once as you please. And because each app operates in a protected memory environment there are no stability issues to be fearful about with so many apps running at the same time. If it takes a long time to launch an app, why not launch several at once? Under Mac OS 9 you could tell the Finder to open several apps and it would open then one at a time, in sequence. Mac OS X actually launches all of them concurrently, with very little speed penalty. Because Mac OS X offers a preemptively multitasked environment you can also switch to another app while you are waiting for another to finish launching. Try doing that with Adobe Illustrator under Mac OS 9... The final aspect of Unix mentality that will be beneficial to adopt is "don't reboot." Once your system is up and running it will happily continue on for a long, long time. There's no need to worry about the system degrading and becoming unstable the longer it runs. Get your system up and then keep it up, if you can. I have a laptop, so unfortunately I have to shutdown whenever I am moving between locations -- but for other people, leave the machine up as long as you can bear it and you'll find your productivity increases (and as for electricity, er... what can I say?)
  10. 10. Conclusion These are just some of the strategies that I have found myself using over the last few months living with Mac OS X as my full-time OS. I don't think I would've discovered them unless I had stuck with the OS despite all of its little annoyances. Persist. Be bold -- try new things. Open your mind to new ways of working and don't cling to your old habits. Learn keyboard shortcuts. Try new software. Share your knowledge with others (a great way to start is by leaving a comment on this article). One of the most exciting things about Mac OS X is that it is only a beginning and is still a work in progress. I wrote this article because one of the shortcomings of the OS is that it is less responsive and speedy than we all hoped it would be. But thankfully for us, the future is bright: machines are getting faster, graphics cards are getting better, and Apple is working long, long days for us optimizing and improving the code of Mac OS X. Other developers too, are getting more familiar with the OS and are writing better and better code for it. If you're even mildly happy with the way Mac OS X is right now, imagine what you'll think of it this time next year... -Wincent Colaiuta You are encouraged to send Richard your comments, or to post them below.
  11. 11. Topic: "Spinning Beach Ball of Death" (SBBOD) Dr. Smoke (Helper) Original Message (Posted Oct 29, 02 1:17 pm) *** Posts: 6951 The "please wait" progress indicator -- where your mouse pointer changes from an arrow to a rotating color wheel or "spinning beach ball" while using an application -- generally indicates that your system is engaged in a very processor-intensive activity. In such cases, the "beach ball" will usually disappear within five to ten seconds, depending on your Mac's processor speed and installed RAM. For example, applying a Gaussian blur to a very large file in Photoshop can be a very processor-intensive activity. However, there are cases when the "beach ball" spins for a much longer period of time, a condition sometimes referred to as "The Spinning Beach Ball of Death" (SBBOD). This FAQ discusses causes of the SBBOD and what you can do about them. Problem: Frequent SBBODs due to processor-intensive activity:
  12. 12. Causes: Running too many applications concurrently and/or running processor-intensive applications with limited RAM. Solutions: If you experience frequent occurrences of the "beach ball" or the longer SBBOD when using processor-intensive applications like Photoshop, consider running fewer other applications concurrently and/or adding additional RAM to your system. With the low cost of RAM today, bringing your total RAM up to 512Mb, 1Gb, or more -- depending on what your system can support -- is more affordable than ever. Additional RAM is one of the best ways to improve overall system performance. Problem: SBBOD spins for 30-35 seconds. You may hear one or more of your hard drives spinning up. Cause: Hard Drive Sleep: Modern hard disk drives (HDDs) are designed to spin-down after a certain period of inactivity. This is to conserve energy and is also considered by some to increase the useful life of the drive by reducing wear. This is usually referred to as "hard drive sleep" but the technical term is Standby mode. In Standby mode, the HDD is in a state of low energy consumption and its platters have ceased to spin. It is awaiting a read or write instruction, at which time the HDD will spin-up its platters to perform the operation. It can generally take 30-35 seconds for a hard drive to spin up once in Standby mode. Solutions: In System Preferences > Energy Saver Preferences, de-select (uncheck) the Put the hard drive to sleep when possible option. When this option is selected, the hard drive
  13. 13. will enter Standby mode after 10 minutes of inactivity. When this option is not selected, the hard drive will not enter Standby mode until after 180 minutes (three hours) of inactivity. Apple has noted and been able to reproduce a problem where secondary internal HDDs, i.e. those other than your OS X boot volume, may enter Standby mode sooner than the three hours specified when the Put the hard drive to sleep when possible option is disabled. This has also been reported by some users of external FireWire Hard Drives. When applications read or write to these secondary drives, and those drives are in Standby mode, the SBBOD will display for 30-35 seconds while the drive spins-up. There is presently no interim solution for this issue, but Apple is working on finding a resolution. If you are experiencing this problem with applications that are reading or writing "scratch" or "temporary" files to secondary drives, configure the application's preferences to write these files to the OS X boot volume. This, combined with de-selecting the Put the hard drive to sleep when possible option should minimize the occurrence of SBBODs with these applications. Problem: The SBBOD appears when opening the Help Viewer Cause: If you are connected to the Internet, the Help Viewer checks for the latest help information on Apple's Web site when it is opened and when searching for help. If you have used Help infrequently, or if you have a slow Internet connection, the SBBOD may appear.
  14. 14. Solution: See AppleCare KB Article 107070. Problem: The SBBOD appears when quitting certain Microsoft Applications Cause: Certain Microsoft applications, such as those in Office, employ an anti-piracy approach whereby, before quitting, the application uses the Internet to "phone home" and validate your software registration. If you are connected to the Internet and have the OS X Firewall enabled, the default firewall settings block this outbound transmission. In such cases, the SBBOD will go on for up to two minutes before the application abandons its attempt to "phone home." Solution: Disable the OS X Firewall before quitting Microsoft Office applications, or wait for the two minutes or so it will take before the application abandons its registration verification. Problem: An application displays the SBBOD for a reason other than those above. Cause: The application has encountered a problem and may be frozen or hung. Solution: Give the application a minute or so to see if it will either return to normal functioning or will quit. Moving your mouse pointer off the potentially frozen application in OS X 10.2.x will return it from the spinning beach ball to a mouse pointer, and you can continue work in other applications.
  15. 15. If the application exhibiting the SBBOD does not return to normal function or quit within a minute or two, you can Force Quit the application using any of the following methods: 1. Option-click on the applications Dock icon and selecting Force Quit from the resulting context menu; 2. Select Apple > Force Quit, then selecting the frozen application in the resulting menu; 3. Press Command+Option+Escape, then selecting the frozen application in the resulting menu. Support Site Index | Export Compliance Contact Us | Privacy Notice Copyright © 2000-2003 Apple Computer, Inc. All rights reserved. 1-800-MY-APPLE
  16. 16. Mac OS X speed FAQ http://www.index-site.com/Macosxspeed.html Last Update Jul 12, 2003 Note, this is a work in progress, and I will accept commentary on this if you find something works better. If unsure as to which of these causes is slowing down your machine, ask a technician to help you isolate it before attempting to use any software to fix the issue. Many of the softwares recommended below have multipurpose functions, which may do other things you don't want to do to your system. Only use the software to solve the known issue you are having. FAQ, in case you didn't know, is the acronym for Frequently Answered Questions. Note: This FAQ assumes you are using Mac OS X 10.2 or higher. If you are using an older version of Mac OS X visit the old version of the FAQ. A couple instances the FAQ may still make reference to Mac OS X 10.1.5. Speed of Mac OS X is controlled by several factors: 1. Firmware 2. RAM 3. Hard disk space
  17. 17. 4. Installing with Archive and Install (includes section on 10.2 updates) 5. Local Area Networks (LANs) 6. Graphics Card 7. Optical mouse (no ball) tracking slowly 8. Backups and disk utilities to run after backup including repair permissions and File System Check and Disk Warrior 9. Prebinding 10. Logfile cleanup 11. Web browsing 12. Hung applications 13. Caches 14. Classic, includes section on Mac OS 9 updates, how to install 9 from the Restore CDs, Mac OS X native applications and hardware, more direct links to Digital Camara, Personal Digital Assistants, iTunes CD-RW and other devices, Printers, Scanners, and Webcams. Carbonlib 1.6 is available for running some Mac OS X native applications within Mac OS 9 15. Underpowered USB ports 16. Zapping the PRAM 17. Bad RAM 18. Login items 19. Remove shadow from window's edge 20. Hewlett packard All in One printer drivers and scanners 21. Hard drive spindown 22. Force emptying trash 23. Retrospect's Startup item 24. Startup Items
  18. 18. 25. Use second user to test problems are not systemwide 26. Removing the Kextcache to avoid some startup problems 27. iMovie slowing you down? 28. Computer tells you it must restart or text appears across screen with cryptic messages cutting the graphics of the screen 29. Books recommended to learn how to work with Mac OS X 1. The wrong firmware may yield unpredictable results, check these updates to see if your firmware needs updating. 2. RAM - if you are just running 128 MB of RAM, you should upgrade using Lifetimememory , Memoryx.net, The Chip Merchant, Crucial, Macsolutions, Techworks, Kingston, Other world computing, or TJS Electronics Later in the FAQ bad ram is discussed and you should pay attention to the specs of the RAM you install. 3. Hard disk space and backups - Mac OS X 10.2 installs in about 1.9 GB of space. For best speed, it is recommended that after installation of X, you have at least 1 GB + your physical RAM that is installed in free hard disk space. So if you have 640 MB of RAM, you should have at least 3.5 GB of free hard disk space before installing Jaguar. It is also recommended you use an external Oxford 911 firewire hard disk to backup your data prior to installing any updates. This makes it difficult for those without Firewire. An upgrade is available from Sonnet that offers Firewire to some iMacs that don't have Firewire. For those Powerbooks and Powermacs with built-in SCSI, Mac OS X does recognize the built-in SCSI
  19. 19. port, but not necessarily all SCSI cards. Thus if you have SCSI on the motherboard you may find it easier to backup to a SCSI hard disk before upgrading. If you need an internal hard disk for Powerbooks that handle the space requirements, check out MCE Products. While you can install Jaguar on an external hard disk, it is only recommended for recovery purposes in case you find the Mac OS X version you just upgraded to is incompatible with software you use frequently, or in case of hard disk directory damage you can't recover from. If you have a 333 Mhz Mac or less, put it on the first 8 GB partition of drives larger than 8 GB. 4. Installing with Archive and Install - Before you Archive and Install, be sure your file system directory checks out to be OK as Apple has recently posted a knowledgebase stating an archive and install over a bad directory is a bad idea. Jaguar has a new Archive and Install feature which should be the way you upgrade from older versions of X if X was already installed on your machine. When doing an Archive and Install, preserve user and network settings to preserve your ISP setup and any saved LAN settings. Doing a simple upgrade install often results in a slower system. The upgrade CDs purchased for $20, or gotten free with machines released between July 17th and August 24th 2002 do not include this Archive and Install option. Only the full retail, or full install disks that were supposed to come with all Macs made after August 24th (call 1-800- APLCARE if yours didn't come with those disks), have the Archive and Install option. Archive and install when you save user and network preferences moves Apple's own applications into the Previous System Folder's Applications folder, and moves the previous Mac OS X operating system folders into the Previous System Folder, as well as the Shared folder in the users folder (which is necessary for AOL to function, if you have AOL).
  20. 20. IMPORTANT If you are unable to preserve user and network preferences with the checkbox in the Archive and Install, your personal folders in the Users -> your username folder will also get moved to the Users folder stored in the Previous System Folder, and a new Users folder of your username will be constructed with no contents except the default folders. This means iPhoto, iMovie, and iTunes data which were stored in Users -> your username - > Pictures, Movies, Music respectively will not be able to load your saved data in those folders until you move their content back to the newly constructed Users folder from the Users folder in the Previous System Folder. After doing an Archive and Install, should all other things below not work, attempt updating to the version of X that last worked using one of these updates. Please note, some people have found updating using the combo updater to the next version works better than the single version updater. Some have had success getting 10.2.5 and 10.2.6 to work better by archive and installing, then running the 10.2.3 combo updater, and then running either the 10.2.5 or 10.2.6 updater. Available System updates to Mac OS X 10.2 10.2 update to 10.2.1 10.2.2 10.2.3 10.2.4 10.2.5 10.2.6 10.2.1 update to 10.2.2 or 10.2.2 combo
  21. 21. 10.2.3 10.2.4 10.2.5 10.2.6 10.2.2 update to 10.2.3 (50 MB)* or 10.2.3 combo 10.2.4 10.2.5 10.2.6 10.2.3 update to 10.2.4 or 10.2.4 combo 10.2.5 10.2.6 10.2.4 update to 10.2.5 or 10.2.5 combo 10.2.6 10.2.5 update to 10.2.6 or 10.2.6 combo * This download is only available directly from the storage space on Apple's server and is not referenced by any knowledgebase anymore. 50 MB will download in about 300 minutes at 56k bps. The rest are referenced by knowledgebase articles where you can download them from. As some of these downloads will take a long time you want to locate your local Apple retailer and have them burn you a copy of the update at the store.
  22. 22. If all you have is Mac OS X 10.1, it is recommended you upgrade to at least 10.1.5 so you can repair permissions. Apple's knowledgebase 106713 explains what updates you need depending on your installed version of Mac OS X 10.1. 5. Local area networking (LANs) - sometimes having another machine on a local area network that isn't connected can slow things down. Turn off file sharing of all machines on network that are not in use for file sharing. 6. Graphics Card - Jaguar fixes this issue for the most part. 7. Optical mice - if you have a mouse that has no rolling ball, but instead has a shining light on its bottom, it needs a surface that is textured. Uniform color surfaces with no patterns make it difficult for optical mice to track, thus making any dragging of the mouse over the surface appear to have little or no action. Use a textured mousepad or smooth surface that gives the mouse something visual to tell the difference of which surface it is tracking over. If your doing this and your mouse tracking is still slow, go to Apple menu -> System Preferences -> Mouse to change your mouse tracking speed. There is a third party software called Mouse Zoom which lets you increase your tracking speed further. 8. Backup before running any utilities for Mac OS X. Backup your data religiously prior to running any disk utility with Dantz Retrospect or Carbon Copy Cloner to an external Firewire hard disk. These functions after a backup may help you recover a hard disk without having to go through the recovery software of the backup, though in case it fails, the backup recovery should always be an option. If you have one of these machines backup becomes somewhat more problematic:
  23. 23. PCI PowerMac G4 - the graphics card used by these Macs use a PCI card and not an AGP graphics card (link tells how to differentiate PCI and AGP). These Macs can't boot off Firewire hard drives which means backups may require working with a machine that can. The ease of recovering from a bootable backup is not there for these machines nor Blue and White PowerMac G3s. Both Beige PowerMac G3s, Powerbook G3s prior to 2000 can boot off SCSI hard drives, but it is hard to find a SCSI hard drive these days that will work with these machines. The Tray Loading CD iMacs under 333 Mhz can have a Firewire port added to them, but that may not be bootable. Consult Sonnet as to whether that is possible. The iMacs prior to the DV model that are not tray loading, and the iBooks prior to the DV model have no Firewire upgrade path, and USB is generally too slow to work with backing up Mac OS X entirely. For these Macs, a CD burner can be used for backup, but recognize media can deteriorate quickly with age, and you should frequently make duplicate backups to ensure you don't lose your data. A full recovery is slower when you don't have a machine you can boot from a backup. A word of warning, don't use Norton Utilities, as it is not 100% aware of the directory issues with Mac OS X and may corrupt directories of Mac OS X more often than save them: You can boot into single user mode by holding down the command-S key combination and run /sbin/fsck -y several times to fix the directory using File System Check (the abbreviation of which is fsck). File System Check can also be initiated by your Mac OS X installer CD, from the Installer menu -> Disk Utility -> First Aid tab -> select hard disk -> select Repair Disk button.
  24. 24. When you boot from Jaguar's Installer CD there is a Repair Permissions function found in its Disk Utility. The Disk Utility is called by selecting it from the Installer menu, and repair permissions or privledges is found in its First Aid tab. If you have upgraded Jaguar past the version on your installer CD, you should use the Disk Utility program found in your Applications -> Utilities folder to do this repair when all other applications are quit. Another utility that repairs permissions is Cocktail. Note, since Cocktail is an all purpose utility, only use it for the feature shown here, as using another part of it to solve your problem may cause more problems in the long run. Another utility which does directory fixes is Alsoft Disk Warrior 2.1.1 for machines bootable in Mac OS 9, and version 3.0 for machines only Mac OS X bootable. Note some SCSI card and built-in SCSI machines may not accept Disk Warrior 3.0, but will accept Disk Warrior 2.1.1 and this thread has been posted to discuss the issue. If you need to create a bootable copy of Disk Warrior and add other system utilities, check this FAQ on how to construct a bootable CD. See Zap PRAM for one other possible solution should you not be able to boot the computer after repairing the disk directory. 9. Prebinding - Jaguar (Mac OS X 10.2) fixes this issue, though before that you can use XOptimize, you may need to expand this program with Stuffit Expander 7.01. Another utility that prebinds is Cocktail. Note, since Cocktail is an all purpose utility, only use it for the feature shown here, as using another part of it to solve your problem may cause more problems in the long run. 10. Logfile cleanup - happens in the middle of the night, though you can manually initiate it with Macjanitor. Note if you use Energy Saver to go to sleep in the middle of the night, it
  25. 25. won't run and you should use Macjanitor instead periodically if you can't leave the machine on overnight using the screen effects (Mac OS X 10.2's name for screen saver found in Mac OS X 10.0 and 10.1) found in the Apple menu -> System Preferences -> Screen Effects settings. Another utility that does logfile cleanup is Cocktail. Note, since Cocktail is an all purpose utility, only use it for the feature shown here, as using another part of it to solve your problem may cause more problems in the long run. 11. Web browsing - Despite the fact Apple includes Internet Explorer as their web browser in X, it is not by any means the fastest browser for Mac OS X, Safari (be sure to get the 1-10-2003 update, if unsure which version you have, go to the Safari menu and check About Safari. v51 is the 1-10-2003 update), Chimera and Mozilla are much faster, and can stop popup advertisements from annoying you. Safari is Apple's new web browser released at Macworld San Francisco in January 2003, and some find it faster, others find it slower than the next two. Mozilla launchtime is slow, and that's a bug with Mozilla, but actual web browsing is much faster than Explorer in many instances but not all. Mozilla 1.2.1 right now is the latest release version of Mozilla, and newer versions are still in development stages. 12. Hung applications and Finder (when the spinning colored cursor comes up) - get Escapepod When this doesn't work, read the Spinning Beachball of Death FAQ 13. Caches - Keep your caches clean with Jaguar Cache Cleaner, Cache Out or Cocktail. Note, since these are all multipurpose utilities, only use it for the feature shown here, as using another part of them to solve your problem may cause more problems in the long
  26. 26. run. With clearing caches, it is important to remember to restart your computer from the Apple menu after finishing the task, otherwise you may not get the results you desire. 14. Classic - Classic's limitation on the amount of RAM it will allocate applications is set to 128MB. For those who need to update from 9.0 these are the updates: Upgrade to 9.1 first, Upgrade to 9.2.1 next, Upgrade to 9.2.2 last. If you got a new machine that has no OS 9 CD and for some reason Mac OS 9 is not installed you can install it from the restore CDs using Apple's article for direction. These machines will not boot into Mac OS 9, however also have Mac OS 9 for use in the Classic environment: http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=86209. It is better though to get Mac OS X native hardware and software than to run items in Mac OS X's Classic environment. Upgrade all your hardware and software first, then upgrade to a new Mac that boots only into Mac OS X. . As a temporary measure to be able to run Mac OS X native applications while you upgrade your library, some Mac OS X native applications work best with CarbonLib 1.6 if booting from Mac OS 9. Contact the developer to make sure that your application works in Mac OS 9 and Mac OS X natively first before attempting to use this temporary measure.
  27. 27. 15. Underpowered USB port - Using unpowered USB devices in the USB port nearest the modem on many machines will slow down the machine. 16. Zapping the PRAM - Sometimes the boot process will be slowed to a crawl because the PRAM hasn't been zapped. You might be left with a blue or gray screen and no more progress after that. If repairing the disk shows no faults, and repairing permissions doesn't seem to affect the boot process, there is the possibility the PRAM needs to be zapped. Restart the machine holding down all four keys command-option-p-r simultaneously (where command is the key that has the cloverleaf and/or Apple logo on it) using the Apple keyboard and wait for four chimes. If your speakers aren't working properly wait for the screen to blink 4 times. Once you start up, you'll need to restart from the Apple menu and fsck -y the disk since you rebooted the machine improperly. 17.Bad RAM - The wrong RAM may yield unpredictable results. Check the specifications and run the hardware test CD on your machine if it has one, or the Apple System Profiler in the Applications/Utilities folder of Mac OS X or in the Apple menu of Mac OS 9. Note, the RAM in the Flat Panel iMac is only accurately reported by the hardware test CD and not the System Profiler. Even when RAM is to spec, sometimes it can be bad RAM for Mac OS X and at least you should remove any additional RAM the machine had installed to see if you have a bad RAM module. Check: http://www.macintouch.com/badram01.html for an extensive report on solutions people found to solve bad RAM.
  28. 28. 18. Login items - unless you are using a specific third party utility all the time, you can remove it from the Apple menu's System Preferences, Login items. This will free up memory and reduce the potential for conflicts. 19. Shadowkiller - You can download Shadowkiller free to remove window shadows and improve window redrawing performance. 20. HP printer drivers - Trouble with HP All in One printer drivers slowing down your machine under Mac OS X 10.2.2? Mac OS X 10.2.3 (available in updates of 10.2.0 or 10.2.1 to 10.2.3 and 10.2.2 to 10.2.3) is supposed to resolve some of the issues faced with HP's communication software. If for some reason you can't upgrade to 10.2.3 right away, Apple has made an upgrade to a critical system extension ftp://ftp.apple.com/developer/Development_Kits/Mac_OS_USB/ IOUSBFamily-1.9.2DDK.dmg.bin One person found removing HP Communications out of /Library/Printers/hp worked very well. HP has written an article addressing the issue: http://h20015.www2.hp.com/en/document.jhtml? reg=&cc=&prodId=hppsc750pr28086&lc=en&docName=bpm30189 and a workaround HP 3500c scanner software until recently has also slowed down Mac OS X. The 171 MB download of 4-23-2003 listed at HP's website fixed one person's slowdown from their scanner. If you have an HP peripheral and it is causing you to slowdown, or any peripheral, check the manufacturer's website for updates, and complain to the manufacturer if no update has happened.
  29. 29. 21. Hard drive spindown - External hard drive spinning down even when Energy Saver isn't running? Spin down fix is designed to keep your hard drives spinning even when Energy Saver is not on. A utility which allows you to edit the spindown times is Cocktail. Note, since Cocktail is an all purpose utility, only use it for the feature shown here, as using another part of it to solve your problem may cause more problems in the long run. 22. Unable to empty trash and it is getting quite full? Force Empty Trash will do it. Another utility that force empties trash is Cocktail. Note, since Cocktail is an all purpose utility, only use it for the feature shown here, as using another part of it to solve your problem may cause more problems in the long run. If the file still doesn't trash, try Force Delete. 23. Retrospect's Startup item running -Dantz Retrospect Express's boot at startup Retrorun process (used for unattended backups). By default, the preferences of Retrospect are set to establish a root process that could potentially slow the system down if not being used. To disable it "To disable retrorun under Mac OS X so it does not load at system startup you can do the following: Go to Retrospect Express menu ->Preferences in Retrospect 5.x for Macintosh Select Notification and uncheck all available options (you can leave "Animate Dock Icon" turned on) Next go to Unattended and set the option to "Stay in Retrospect". Restart the computer and retrorun will no longer load at system startup from article 27286 in Dantz's knowledgebase.
  30. 30. 24. Startup items - Related to the Dantz Retrospect item above, check your Library folder's Startup Items folder. If you find stuff in there you don't use, you should throw it out. 25. Use second user to isolate problem to system or user settings - Sometimes creating a new user can isolate third party software installations if they were made by your user. Apple menu -> System Preferences -> Accounts -> New User, will create a new user you can log into in order to isolate problems. Be sure to give them administrative privledges, and no you don't have to lose auto login. You can always Logout from the Apple menu and log in as the test user to try things out. 26. Kextcache - Remove the /System/Library/Extensions.kextcache, and Extensions.mcache file after holding down the shift key sometimes fixes boot issues. 27. iMovie 3 has caused some consternation, and as a result tips were published on the Unofficial iMovie FAQ page. The iMovie 3.0.3 update is now available and may solve some of the most common issues. 28. The subject of item 28 in the FAQ is covered by the page that discusses Kernel Panics. 29. Not exactly related to speed, but if you better understand how X operates, you can make more efficient use of it. These two books are excellent guides: The Robin Williams Mac OS X Book by Robin Williams and Mac OS X the Missing Manual by David Pogue. A similar hint page developed separately is here: http://www.macattorney.com/tutorial.html Additional information about Mac OS X native software and hardware may be found on this sites directory of Mac OS X related sites.
  31. 31. The old version of this FAQ is available as well if you are running an older version of Mac OS X, though it is highly recommended you upgrade to Jaguar. Most of this old version of the FAQ is outdated now that Jaguar (Mac OS X 10.2) has been released.
  32. 32. Mac OS X Kernel Panic FAQ Sometimes Mac OS X may tell you it needs to restart the computer with one of these two kinds of screens: Mac OS X 10.0 to 10.1.5 will show the above type of response on your display Mac OS X 10.2 will show the above image transparently over your display Above images obtained from Apple's description of a kernel panic Some have mentioned these images may be hard to read on a laptop screen. In addition, some kernel panics are less obvious, but are still kernel panics: If "Codes: KERN_PROTECTION_FAILURE (0x0002) at 0x00000048" (or similar error occurs) Appears in the logfile that shows up in console.log, crashreporter.log, or any other Log in Applications -> Utilities -> Apple System Profiler -> Logs tab, or a log in Applications -> Utilities -> Console suspect a kernel panic when the kernel protection failure occurs. The most common causes of kernel panics are in this particular order: 1. A directory failure or user accidently moving .kext files that should be left alone. The directory may fail, due to an accident caused by Norton Utilities or Systemworks, which may at random corrupt a directory even when trying to repair it. Norton Anti-Virus will not do this, but Disk Doctor and Speed Disk have a history of doing this. An uninstaller has
  33. 33. been made available here with a link to an Apple Discussion Board thread where the problems with Norton have been discussed. A directory may also fail because the system is improperly shut down (which naturally happens when you restart the computer due to a kernel panic). The system has to be shut down from the blue Apple menu in the upper left corner of the screen in Mac OS X, or the Special menu in Mac OS 9's Finder. Running Mac OS X it is possible to force quit programs that misbehave without having to shut down the system by command-option-escape key sequence, and you can even force quit the Finder. Naturally if you force quit an application, it won't save the last edited file that is currently open, but at least you won't be corrupting the hard disk directory by doing it. To fix a directory that is corrupted, you should first backup your data to an external Firewire or SCSI hard disk, and make sure it is bootable using Carbon Copy Cloner or Retrospect Express. Once backed up you can use the Mac OS X Installer CD or DVD to boot from, and use the Installer menu's Disk Utility to repair the hard disk from its First Aid tab. Be sure to select the hard disk before hitting Repair Disk in the First Aid tab. If after four attempts to repair the disk, it does not say the disk appears to be OK, you should attempt to repair it with Disk Warrior or erase the internal hard disk, and recover from your bootable backup. If you think you may have inadvertantly affected the .kext files in the System or Library folders from Mac OS 9, you can attempt to repair permissions with the Disk Utility found in the Applications -> Utilities folder of Mac OS X 10.2.x, or if you have Mac OS X 10.1.5, use the Repair Priviledges utility. If you have moved the .kext files, it will be necessary to Archive and Install the operating system to get it to run properly again and apply the Mac OS X combo update to get back up to the last known working version of the operating system.
  34. 34. 2. Peripherals that aren't Mac OS X native may cause a kernel panic, and you should check the Mac OS X native software directories and search engines, and any hardware manufacturer's website for more recent drivers that are known to be compatible with your version of Mac OS X. Three special cases are Apple hardware related that may give some peripherals difficulty, namely Mac OS X 10.2.5 has been known to kernel panic at certain USB hubs, and it is recommended you upgrade to 10.2.6 to avoid this issue. The other is on the Flat Panel iMacs that are 700 Mhz and 800 Mhz. These iMacs have a USB port right next to the modem port that is unable to work properly with USB devices that require power from the computer. And in some cases it also means the mouse has to be plugged in the USB port on the right side of the keyboard and not the left side of the keyboard One commenter mentioned that they had a Zio! Compact Flash Reader that would only kernel panic if the Compact Flash Card was already inserted when the computer was woken from sleep. Many third party devices are not Energy Saver aware, and this could cause a kernel panic because of that issue. 3. RAM and motherboards are the least likely suspect in kernel panics, but if you just have a new system, and or just installed new memory and you get a kernel panic, that's the most likely place to start looking. If your RAM is not to specifications you may get a kernel panic. To make sure it is to specifications on the Flat Panel iMac, you need to use the Hardware Test CD that came with your Flat Panel iMac, as the Apple System Profiler doesn't accurately report the kind of RAM that is installed. Otherwise use the Apple System Profiler to check the kind of RAM that is installed, especially if your computer is not one that normally came with a Hardware test CD. When installing or removing RAM, be sure you know how to install it without breaking the clips, as Apple may not cover the break of
  35. 35. the clips under warranty, and only install RAM that is listed as customer installable for your model Mac, otherwise take it to an authorized service technician to install. Make sure before going to purchase new RAM that it is properly seated in its slot. Some RAM that isn't seated properly may register, yet cause a kernel panic. Third party RAM can only be installed by third party authorized service technicians that are Apple authorized as the official Apple Stores don't install third party RAM. If replacing the RAM with lifetime warranty memory from a good RAM dealer does not fix the kernel panic problem, then I would take it in to Apple repair to have the motherboard looked at. Motherboards can be more expensive than buying AppleCare, thus it is recommended you buy AppleCare within the first year of your computer's ownership in case you have to replace the motherboard. A similar FAQ developed independently from this one offers many of the same suggestions on: Apple's Discussion Boards Thus concludes the Kernel Panic FAQ. Feel free to post feedback or return to the Mac OS related links page of Macmaps.com

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