Monthly Archives: October 2009

I was downloading a backup this morning from the fairly new dedicated server:

Dedicated download speed

Dedicated download speed

Note the 1.5 MB/s downspeed, from a server! Get that with a shared host. I dare you!

Mac Pro – day 6

October 16, 2009Computers

I love my Mac. His name’s Alfred, in case you were wondering.  You know, like Bruce Wayne’s butler.  And he’s just as awesome, and helpful.

I’ve done quiet a bit in the last six days of having a Mac, including doing my first bit of design work on it.  I also learned what applications I need to rip and burn DVDs, which is so fast I have a hard time believing that this is actually working. Amazing, right?

I’m still in awe that I’m able to do all the things I can, and so far.

I was scared to make the switch full time. I even bought Parallels, just in case there was something I needed to do on Windows. I haven’t even opened it aside from when I installed it, to make sure it worked.  It’s amazing.

Who knew that I’d convert after all these years?  Did I go to the “dark side?”, no. I think quite the opposite, actually.  I went from years of being frustrated with Windows, and not being able to do the things I wanted to, to having the simplicity of a Mac, and the ease that comes with it.

I’ve got a lot of web-related stuff to do this weekend, so I’ll finally put it to the test.  I’ll also be upgrading the last two drives in it (the one it came with, and the secondary one that will be for Time Machine backups), and possibly getting a new mouse.

Why didn’t any of my Mac friends make me switch years ago? Thanks, jerks.

Mac Pro Day!

October 10, 2009Computers

First, thanks to Nick at the Apple store in the Rockingham Mall (Salem, New Hampshire).  Dude knows his stuff, that’s for sure.  I know what you’re thinking, all the dudes and dudettes at the Apple stores know their stuff.  True, but none that I’ve encountered like this guy.  He had an answer to every question I had, and got me everything I wanted.  Kudos to you, sir.

So, how’s the Mac? Glad you asked. Let’s put it this way: I’ve used a lot of high end PCs in my lifetime. A lot. And not one of them has ever come close to this thing.  Here’s the final specs:

  • Dual Quad Core 2.26 Processors (I would have upgraded the processors, but a) I didn’t think I needed to, and b) the prices are a bit crazy)
  • 8Gigs of Ram
  • ATI Radeon HD 4870 (The upgrade with 512MB of DDR5 on-board  video memory.)
  • 640 GB main drive.
  • 30″ Cinema display.

I’m about 80% done installing all the software I need, and it’s so easy because this thing’s a freakin’ beast.  I’ve been installing handfuls of apps at a time.  My PC would have thrown up and died an hour ago.  So awesome.

As you may know, my PC had two external hard drives, each a terabyte in site, that I had planned on connecting to this beast. However, they used Firewire 400 and the new Mac Pros only have Firewire 800 (only, like it’s a bad thing, heh.)

So my solution was rather destructive.  I ripped open the cases, and dropped them into the available slots on the Mac Pro.  I know what you’re thinking; it’s day one and I’m ripping the thing open already to put more stuff in it?  With a PC that may be complicated, but fret not, it takes less than 10 seconds to install a new drive into a Mac Pro. Literally.

So I dropped in the two terabyte drives, and the secondary 320gb drive from my PC, for a total of 2.94TB in the Mac Pro.

The hardest part was opening the freakin’ cases of the drives, which I learned is more complicated than it needs to be. The first was easy, the second I ended up smashing to bits to get the drive out.  It worked though.

One of the drives is formatted in a way that OS X can’t erase stuff from it. (I assume this is a formatting issue), so I’m going to copy everything off of it, format it, and put the stuff back.  It’ll take a while, but it’ll get done eventually.

The biggest question people are going to ask, is about the 30″ Cinema display.  Is it as good as it should be for $1800?  You bet your sweet ass it is.  I can fit the whole freakin’ internet on this thing, on one screen. It’s huge, and the resolution is enormous.

It truly is a work of art. Given, it should be for what I paid for it, but I’m not complaining.

Overall, my Mac experience thus far, has been nothing but excellent.  My PC is sitting next to me (as a reminder of what applications I need to install) and begging me not to through it away.  With those beady Windows eyes of it.  Evil! Evil I say!

Photos of the new set up below (Warning, I didn’t re size them, so they’re going to make your monitor explode.  Mine, on the other hand, loves them this large):

Thanks again to Nick at the Apple store. You are awesome, and my new computer thanks you for selling it to me.

For those of you following along at home, Mac Pro day was supposed to fall on my 30th birthday.  For reasons out of my control, it’s been pushed back until I get paid from one of my clients.  Which should happen today.

Thus, Mac Pro day will be this Saturday morning, October 10th.  I’m beyond excited.

Also, in case you weren’t following along at home, I’m making the switch to Mac after 25 years on a PC.  I’ve been using an iMac at the office I’ve got with one of my clients for about 4 months now, and I love it. I can’t wait to switch. The fear of not having Windows was pretty strong for a while, but has completely subsided. I’m ready for change.

I’ll be purchasing a Mac Pro, with some added options to it, and a 30″ Cinema display. (Or possible 2 24″ LED displays, depending on whether or not the sales person thinks they’ll be better for me.)  Check back this weekend for photos.

A good friend of my wife’s, who’s since become a good friend of mine (Trish) confused me the other night, at the party, by saying that my gift was “being made in New Jersey” and that it would be a few days late.

Confused, and wondering, I forgot about it. Until last night, when Christine brought it home.

I opened the bag to find a bunch of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit schwag.  Trish knows it’s one of our favorite shows, and also knows that both my wife and I have crushes on Mariska Hargitay who plays a Detective on the show.

My gift also includes an autographed photo of the entire cast, and one just from Mariska.

Mariska Hargitay - it says "To Mike Happy Birthday"

Mariska Hargitay - it says "To Mike Happy Birthday"

My friends rule. Thanks for calling in the favor, Trish!  Great gift!  I’ll certainly frame both of the pictures, and hang them up in our place!