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About Ruahrc

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    Mac Geek Apprentice

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  1. Time Capsule- no SPI firewall!?

    Simply having the router in place is a big part of the security- but SPI also helps prevent other types of attacks that a router alone won't. And I don't think that anybody can successfully argue that adding an SPI firewall will not make the system more secure. Considering that SPI-capable routers can be had easily for under $40, it's clearly not an expensive item or feature to be adding into the featureset either. Heck Apple could put one in and then charge more premium for it! By design perhaps, but from a software engineering point of view, it's a poor design. Why depend on local copies of software when it can be implemented in a server-style solution? Apple clearly buys into this philosophy big time with major portions of their OS, putting a lot of effort into common frameworks for things like Core Audio or Grand Central- why make every software have their own copy of this code when it can be implemented in a central location? The same logic can be extended to configuring the router- why have every computer keep a local copy of the configurator, when it can be made to run centrally from the router? It's just a more efficient, more elegant design- something that Apple typically likes to do also. Besides if the Airport was designed to run only with Macs, why did they go through the effort to produce a windows version of the Airport configuration software? I suspect the likely reason is that way back when the first Airport router was released, web-based configuration of the routers was not the norm. So they went with the software utility solution, and as new models came out and were upgraded, they didn't want to "rock the boat" too much by switching it up. So they stick with their old standard, until I suppose eventually demand will dictate that they update their paradigm, and they will move to a new design. I guess I just hope it happens sooner rather than later. I do have some issues with Apple, as no company or product I have seen so far is perfect. I will still buy a new Apple computer to replace my current one, but the more I think about it the less I think I am inclined to get the TC.
  2. Time Capsule- no SPI firewall!?

    You may be right about the routing, but I think having a hardware firewall in the router adds additional protection. I only complain about Time Capsule's lack of SPI firewall because it can be found on other brand routers even the low cost ones. In fact I don't think I can find a router that includes a firewall and doesn't do SPI. Your point on the interface is well taken, but I still don't see where the OS interface is any better than just implementing a web interface instead. There don't seem to be any distinct advantages to using a program (faster operation, maybe?), whereas there are clear advantages to using a web based setup (platform independence). I can't configure the TC from my iPod Touch, but I can configure my current Netgear router with it. Ultimately you may be right. The TC may just not fit my needs. It's just frustrating when Apple makes great strides with products like these, then stumble on the last few steps with bonehead decisions like no SPI firewall. Especially when I have yet to read a legitimate justification or explanation for doing so. Clearly, charging people more for premium products with premium features doesn't bother Apple, so why leave off almost universally common features? Another example is laptop screen resolution. IMO there are enough users out there who want a higher res 15" MBP that adding a cost-extra option for one should be available. Every other major notebook manufacturer does it, why not apple? I think they said once that their users did not want the screen elements to be too small. We also didn't want mice with more than one button either I suppose. Ruahrc
  3. I'm planning to get a new mac soon as my old PBG4 is getting to be too slow for what I need. Anyways I was thinking maybe at the same time I woudl pick up a Time Capsule. I recently started playing with Time Machine using a FW800 external drive to back up my PBG4 (I used to use Synk to do a full system backup prior to this) and like its transparentness. I still do Synk backups of selected folders (i.e. documents, music, etc) for an added layer of security. Anyways, the thing that really surprises me is that time Capsule (and the Airport Extreme actually) lack 2 of the most basic features found on even the cheapest routers... 1) no SPI firewall 2) lack of web browser interface The SPI firewall concerns me because I feel that for what is supposed to be a high qualtiy feature packed base station, the lack of SPI firewall is surprising. Especially when my $30 Netgear router has one? "OS X is secure enough" you may say, and it may be true, but again why skimp on such a basic function? And also I have a windows XP SP3 PC on the network as well. I don't run antivirus or other garbage like that on it because I only use it for very light browsing and figure the hardware firewall plus the windows firewall are protecting me. I've been using Windows XP for years and have never had a problem. The lack of a web-based browser interface may not be as bad, but certainly makes it more difficult to manage the Airport Express from the Windows PC that is on my network. Why force me to use my Mac and it's software utility to manage the router when again even the cheapest piece of junk router has web browser based configuration? Doesn't make sense if you ask me. Anyhow, I'm asking if you think either of these is a big enough deal to worry about. Remember, I will have 1-2 Macs and 1 Windows XP computer on the network. Having the TC seems like a nice clean way to get backup for my proposed new mac, but these 2 issues (particularly the subpar firewall) seem almost like a deal-breaker. Ruahrc
  4. iTunes Store Daylight Robbery

    I heard once that if you simply moved the tracks you don't want to upgrade from your iTunes library temporarily and then only left in the tracks you did want to upgrade you could in a way "selectively" update your track library. Using this strategy you might be able to get the "per-track" price upgrade for your albums by removing half of each album first and then doing the upgrade? It should then see that you "don't hav"e all the tracks and give you the per trac k price. I don't own any itunes music though so I don't know if this really works. As for the high cost of upgrade- your music doesn't sound any worse now than it did before iTunes plus, and you knew the quality of the music when you bought it the first time around. Ruahrc
  5. New Macbook Pro anti-glare option

    This may be old news now but I think Dolphbucs is right. If you go to the apple website and look at the 17" MBP info page (http://www.apple.com/macbookpro/features-17inch.html) you can find a picture of the antiglare 17" MBP. To see it you scroll down to where it says "Graphics in Full Force". Underneath that you see a small gallery of 3 pictures. None of these 3 show the anti-glare screen, but there is a 4th picture that does. To see it, simply click on the gallery to enlarge one of the pictures. You'll see four pictures on the bottom now, and one of them shows the 17" MBP with anti-reflective screen. Why they don't show this 4th pic on the main page I don't know. You can see that the bezel has changed to silver- something I don't think they would have done if they were merely adding an AR coating to the glossy front. I think they're removing the glossy screen altogether and replacing it with a more traditional style aluminum bezel. Ruahrc
  6. Backup Solutions

    So recently I picked up a new 400GB WD My Passport Studio external drive for my mac. I got it because my 60GB HD is nearly full and I needed another drive on which to store photos. The fact that the drive is FW800 bus-powered and external and small means I can take it with me and still have my photos with me even though I am not at home at my desk. Anyhow, previously, I was using a 250GB external HD as my computer backup. It is a desktop HD which requires an AC adapter and is not mobile. I had it partitioned up in to 3 parts, 1 NTFS to back up my PC, 1 HFS+ to back up my Mac, and 1 FAT32 that I could use for universally (read: mac and pc) accessible file storage. With the new drive I wanted to move the Mac system backup to the 400GB external, and then put a duplicate copy of all my photos onto the old external drive as a backup. So I reformatted the old external to keep the 1 NTFS for my PC backup and made the remaining space FAT32 for universally accesible file storage. On the new drive I have made 2 partitions. 1 60GB HFS+ for system backup and the remaining space being HFS+ for my photos and other random junk. The initial concept here was to use a program like CCC (or Synk, which I used to use) to make a bootable backup image of my drive on the small partition. The problem is that the WD drive won't boot from Firewire (research indicates that this is an issue with their SATA>Firewire interface chip), and since I don't have the ability to boot from USB (non-intel Mac) then I thought to myself that making a complete bootable backup doesn't make as much sense anymore. Thus, I'm looking for a new solution. I read some about Time Machine back in the day but dismissed it as not being good for my needs at the time. I wanted bootable backups for disaster recovery, and didn't want to keep the HD attached to my computer constantly like Time Machine wants. I also don't see much personal value in the ability to go back an hour in time and get a file I accidentally erased. I back up more for catastrophic disaster such as a HD crash or major OS corruption. Should I still consider Time Machine? With 400GB on the external which is quite a lot, I could increase the size of my backup partition to 120GB (double the size of my drive) to give TM more breathing room, and just let it go. I still don't intend to have the drive connected to my computer 24/7 but as I understand it now I can just plug in the drive when I want and TM will back up as much as it can, when it can? What if I only connect the drive for a few minutes and it can't copy over all the data it wants? I admit that using tools like CCC are kind of a hassle and the transparentness of TM is an interesting concept but I just am not sure that it is robust enough to back up a system when the drive only gets intermittently connected to the computer. And recovering from a TM backup requires a reinstall from the OS X DVDs and a lengthy TM restore. What do you guys think? How do you manage your data backup? Ruahrc
  7. iTunes source pane, no "sharing"

    I had the firewall set to "allow all incoming connections" initially. For some strange reason now, it seems to be working properly all of a sudden. I can see the shared libaries on my list. I set the firewall to "set access for specific services and applications" now so my computer *should* be more secure? As in it will start asking for permission for programs to accept incoming connections? Ruahrc
  8. Got a wierd problem, wondering if anyone can help out. Running iTunes 8 on OS X 10.5. I would like to enable remote sharing of itunes libraries, specifically letting me browse for shared libraries. I checked both pertinent options in the iTunes prefs (share my own library and look for other shares). My friend can see my library just fine. However, I can't see anyone else's library. On my friend's mac, when he enabled the "look for shared libraries" option in iTunes a new category appeared in the left pane of the iTunes window called "Shared". On my mac, however, when I enable the "look for shared libraries" option do not see the new "shared" category. BTW, on his computer there were several libraries other than mine visible so I should be able to see those too, right? How do I get it to show so that I can see other peoples' shared libraries? Ruahrc
  9. The default gamma setting for Macs is 1.8, but the PC standard is 2.2. Do you mac photographers put your display settings to 2.2, in order to keep consistent with PC imaging/web standards, or do you stay at 1.8? Does it affect the photos you make? I would think that editing photos on 1.8 would look too dark when viewed on a 2.2PC or on the web. Or am I not understanding the gamma settings correctly? I think some applications preserve the brightness if you properly encode the color profile into the file, but if you don't do it correctly it won't? Ruahrc
  10. I got a new battery for my PBG4 1.3GHz recently. I'm having some trouble with the reported max capacity of the battery, however. The battery has 50 cycles on it but already it is reading a max capacity of ~62% or ~2700mAh. The funny thing is that not too long ago (a couple of weeks, the last time I checked) the capacity was reading around 80%. Again 80% is pretty low for a battery this new but to see a 20% drop in just a few weeks is really strange. I tried calibrating the battery by letting the PB run down on battery power until sleep, then charging until full. This did not seem to help. Earlier I also tried the 2nd method of calibrating it by running it down, then leaving it in sleep mode until the computer fully died. It was asleep for almost 2 days before it fully died, but when I charged it up again it was reporting 85% capacity. But again, just a couple weeks later it is reporting as 62%? Is there any way I can have the battery exchanged with Apple? The problem is I bought it from a friend for $20, not from Apple. But since the battery is reading low and has so few cycles, can I have it exchanged at Apple? My friend got the battery new from a university computer store, which is an apple authorized dealer but it was a while ago and he didn't use it much so he sold it to me so I could use it. With only $20 invested it's not a huge deal that the battery doesn't perform like brand new (I haven't actually measured the real life of the battery yet) but if I can fix it or get it replaced then it'd be nice. P.S. My PB's original battery has 267 cycles and reports 3963mAh or 90% capacity. It's a model A1078 whereas this new battery is the "newer model" A1148. Does this make a difference, and might this be the cause of the problem (some kind of incompatibility)? Norman
  11. I forgot to mention that I already used spotlight (and Panther's find) and couldn't find it. It wasn't in Apps/Utilities/ Anyways I upgraded the 10.3.9 system to tiger, at which point it appeared on the freshly upgraded Tiger system. Used it and it worked, pretty slick. No problems that I can tell so far. Ruahrc
  12. I am looking to move to a different mac. Previously, I thought the process was simply to hook up both macs using a FW cable, and run the "Migration Assistant". Problem is, I cannot find the Migration Assistant on my computer. Nor can I find the "Setup Assistant" either which apparently can transfer a user onto a new mac. (please note that although I say "new mac" and "old mac", neither computer is "new" i.e. fresh out of the box. Hence my needing/wanting to run Migration Assistant) I was thinking of doing the following: -Create a new user on the new mac, with a name identical to my current user name. -Copy my old "home folder" (remember, the name of the folder is identical to the newly created one) onto the new mac, overwriting the new one. This should accomplish the same task, yes? You should note that the hardware on the two macs are different (Both are PM G5's but have different hardware specs) Also, one compuer is running Tiger (old mac I'm currently on), the other is on 10.3.9 (new mac I want to move to). Migration Assistant and Setup Assistant can not be found on either computer. I am thinking of upgrading the new mac to Tiger, at which point it will run the setup assistant? Additionally, if I do upgrade the new mac to OS X Tiger, would the following scenario work: -Upgrade new mac to Tiger using complete format & reinstall -During new mac's setup assistant run, have it transfer the acct. from the old mac. -This should simultaneously create a new account on the new mac as well as install all the apps I had on the old mac onto the new mac, right? Because it transfers the Applications folder during the user account transfer? (At least there is an option for this) Ruahrc
  13. Safari: Bad Request? WTF?

    I was able to connect to said sites w/my PC using IE no problem. My backup Safari also worked. So I am all ready to replace my current safari with my backed up one, and I give it one last try. It works. The reboot must have solved it. Wierd. Ruahrc
  14. Safari: Bad Request? WTF?

    It says https. I tried these same websites just now with the mac at my work, and was able to log in to these websites no problem. I have seen this behavior while connected to the internet via 2 different ISPs, but only with my mac. That, combined with the fact that I see the same error on 2 independent SSL websites, leads me to believe that it is my Safari that is causing the problem. Somethng must have gotten corrupted in my Safari, however strange that sounds. Is there a way to "restore" or "reinstall" Safari? I have a backup hard disk with a bootable copy of my OS X at home. I will try booting from it and using the safari app there. If it works, would I be able to just copy the Safari.app from the backup to my Powerbook, overwriting the one that is there? Ruahrc
  15. Safari: Bad Request? WTF?

    It's not chase bank. I've never had a problem accessing this bank's website previously. I have a PC here with Windows XP- I will try connecting to these same sites later on today on the PC and see if it works.