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Posts posted by Dragon6

  1. OK. I did purchase the Newer Technology ministack v3. I have had it for a few months now and have been very happy with its performance. Data transfers have been very good and I can boot just as fast from it as I can my internal. One negative note, however. I purchased it from OWC with bundled software for an additional price. I already had backup software but wanted the speed tool utilities. Waste of money because it is not a fully licensed version but a crippled one that does not include updates. Some have commented about fan noise but I have not noticed it sitting next to my iMac. Installation was easy and it even includes a temp probe that provides temp data you can monitor using iStat Pro. Overall, though I have been very pleased.

  2. All,


    I have two USB 2.0 WD My Book essential external hard drives: 1 320 GB and 1 500 GB. Their performance is horrible. The enternal drives are 3.5" SATA. I want to take them out and install them into 3.5" SATA firewire enclosures - preferably ones with firewire and USB 2.0 so I don't loose my firewire and can daisy chain them. I plan on using these for data storage and backup with my intel iMac Core 2 Duo. I was surprised at the lack of SATA enclosures and their prices.


    I have looked at the following three.




    I like this one because of what it appears you get for your money. Same price as the newer tech ministack v3. I can store two non identical drives in one enclosure on my desk. OWC claims: OWC Mercury Elite Pro -AL RAID FW800 Drive Enclosure for 2 SATA Drives: Can be configured as Hardware RAID - 0 Stripe - for the fastest speeds Span, to use 2 non-identical SATA drives, or JBOD - 2 individual drives.


    I have never used raid and am wondering if the JBOD setting treats each drive as a separate individual drive and if this has any impact on data rate performance.




    Not my top choice although this single drive enclosure is $10 cheaper.




    Nice form factor. Has firewire and usb 2.0 hubs.


    Any help would be appreciated.



  3. One tip is left to be made:


    Use Onyx or Cocktail to set your startup to verbose, IF you will see these crashes they are announced on screen, and of course you can recheck them in your console log (/Applications/Utilities/console.app)

    Verbose startup will show you all underpinning unix-things starting up before you actually get to the login window. It is quite illustrative and as said it also shows the reasons for panics.




    Thanks Cassiope.

  4. Welcome! Welcome! You will find soon (if you haven't already) that the Mac world is very friendly - much like a family. :) And we love getting new family members!! Feel free to ask lots of questions - everyone here is very ready and willing to help out.


    Anyway, I recently switched also, and I felt like I was reading my own story when I read yours! I have always used PCs and mine died about a year ago. The breaking point for me was when I realized that I (also a gamer) was buying a $1500-2000 machine every 2-3 years because they keep breaking on me, &/or being obsolete with the newest games, OS's, etc. It just seemed like a waste of money to have to spend that much over and over and over and over. And right about the same time as this was happening, my mp3 player was driving me crazy, so I decided to stick one toe in the water, so to speak, and buy an iPod (killing two birds with one stone!). And I haven't looked back since.


    It makes me wonder, why did it take me so long to switch! I'm sure you're asking yourself the same thing. :)


    I think you would find a lot of switchers with similar stories. I work in a technical field and have noticed several of my peers switching over the last year for very similar reasons.

  5. Hey, Dragon6,


    I'm both very happy that you've made the switch and are happy and that you've joined the forum (I hope that means you have and/or do listen to the podcast, too)


    I have said in at least one other thread that pretty much every Mac I have owned is still around or they have moved on to others and are still working. I have a couple original iMacs which have problems but I plan to combine them into a working Mac. About six months ago, I got a working old iMac from a friend who had upgraded. I have added some RAM I had around, wiped the drive, reinstalled OS 9 and gave to my 4 yr old niece. She loves it. Plays games, iTunes, etc. (A geek in the making)


    This is not to say that problems don't exist on Macs, but I really believe they are easier to solve than on Windows or even Linux machines. While Linux might rival the Mac community, Windows seems to be a much more 'if it don't work, buy a new one' kind of thing.


    Keep in touch.


    Huskermn, I listen to several mac podcasts to get smart on macs including this one. the community has been great. And again, thanks for help in the software section this weekend. Things are up and running again with little pain.

  6. Mac may never take over but has had some great financial quarters recently and I am convinced more and more are coming over from the dark side because they are fed up, tried an apple product, were impressed that it worked as advertised and made the switch. I plan on getting a mac book for my wife and daughter and possibly a mini for my son. Soon I will have everyone converted.


    PC makers better wake up - consumers are voting with their feet.

  7. I used to be a hard core PC user but had become increasingly dissatisfied with PCs and Windows. I, like many, was getting sick of constant updates that crashed the computer, vendors and Microsoft pointing fingers when hardware/software didn't get along, etc. But, like so many, I was heavily invested in PCs and used to being treated like crap for so long that I didn't think about my alternatives until the final straws!


    WMP10 "Plays for Sure" Players that didn't play - especially after WMP11.


    Last year, I bought MP3 players for myself and my teenage daughter and signed up with Napster-to-Go service. I found this service to be less than stable and predictable. WMP10 and our players were less than stable often requiring restores, etc. Very frustrating, expecially when I was on a business trip and mine or my daughters failed. Shortly after our purchase, Microsoft updated to WMP11 and our WMP10 "Plays for Sure" MP3 players no longer played. The vendors stopped supporting them - no new firmware and no plans to update these players but feel free to buy our new ones that are guaranteed to play until the next update. Well, that was all I needed to start thinking about something else. I travel a lot and saw all these people with iPods and started to think maybe I should give it a try.


    PCs and Vista, need I say more?


    My ~ 5 year old HP was on life support. Forget that I had an optical drive fail the first week I bought the thing - which HP would not replace unless I shipped the entire computer back - with my personal data on it - because they didn't think I was competent enough to swap it out myself. Well I started to think about what I would replace it with. Customer service in the PC industry has gotten worse and I was not inclined to try again - even Dell is just a shell of what it used to be.


    I thought about building my own but that would cost thousands to get 4 - 5 years out of it - hard corps gamer. But wait, gaming consoles are getting to be pretty good and a lot cheaper and their software works with the hardware so why invest that much? Goodbye DirectX and graphics card upgrades!


    Then I heard about Vista. It was going to come in 5 or 6 versions for several hundreds of dollars. I was not jazzed about dealing with a new OS. Oh, and games were going to start being made for Vista only. Well I did some research on Macs and their OS and found that people were happy. The systems just worked and were stable and that, unlike PCs running windows, you could get many years out of your Mac. With PCs you usually need a new computer with each new OS. And Mac OS updates were only ~$130. Oh, and Macs came with everything I pretty much needed at home.


    The halo effect - Tried iPod and it worked great!


    Well, I decided to ease my transition by purchasing an iPod first. It worked great. The software and hardware just fit together! No crashes, no failure to synch, no DRM issues. So after my HP died and, after being so pleased with the iPod, I made the jump and bought a 20" Core 2 Duo iMac. :)

  8. Everyone,


    I think my USB 2.0 drives were overheating. I had them stacked inside my desk and that was the cause of the eratic behavior. The program crashes seem to be associated with programs that were reading and writing to those drives, i.e. iTunes, iPhoto, Finder, Data Backup, etc. So I moved the drives onto the desk and found that they were more responsive and performance was much more stable so that problem has been solved. I also move my iTunes and iPhoto libraries back into my shared directory on my internal drive.


    When I do a clean install, I plan on doing a secure erase first then installing the OS. Is there any benefit in partitioning the internal drive and putting data one of the partitions?


    I also noticed that I do not have access to other user's directories in my backup. I am wondering if that would be a problem when I go to restore. I am assuming the backup has all the files but that I do not have permissions.


    Can I log in as root to manipulate those folders if I have to do a manual restore?

  9. Everyone. Thanks for the effort. I will check back first thing in the morning. I am backing everything up tonight on both external drives just in case.


    If migration assistant doesn't work, what are the key files I need to transfer?


    Can I install iTunes again, move iTunes library back along with key iTunes library files and then transfer other key files back to the internal drive? I know I would have to configure the user accounts and preferences again and then transfer safari and firefox bookmarks and preferences; mail preferences, email accounts and mail boxes; iCal databases; address book backup; and keychains. Should I wait to import keychain archives until after I reinstall all apps?


    Afterwards should I do a clean backup?

  10. SuperDuper is great. It will make a bootable clone of your drive, which will be good for future use. In this case, you'll probably want to dump that copy once you have migrated everything back. Migration Assistant will copy all those things back to your internal, but I believe you'll need to invoke it separately for each user account.


    Speaking of other user accounts, do you get the same symptoms operating as a different user than your main account (did I ask that already)?


    I understand that migration assistant requires either a bootable copy on an external hard disk or on an internal partition. Is that correct? My external drives are USB 2.0. I heard that you can boot off those with the new intel macs although I have not tried it. Has anyone done that?


    And yes, someone already asked that in this forum. I have issues on all user accounts.

  11. He doesn't have 25% free he has 75% free, no problem there. Start by running http://www.titanium.free.fr/pgs2/english/maintenance.html and see if that doesn't fix things up. At that point if you don't mind doing a full install it certainly will not hurt. If you are going to do that superduper is an excellent backup app. It will clone your hard drive then you can do a clean install and use migration assistant to bring back your user account. A word of warning though superduper will want to erase your external drive.


    Thanks. I just downloaded a trial version of Superduper. I have not been impressed with performance of Prosoft's Data Backup. I did not realize it would erase my external hard drive and I did not think of using migration assistant.


    Will migration assistant migrate all user accounts, preferences, email accounts, downloaded email, safari and firefox bookmarks, applications, etc?

  12. its no doubt old cache files and probably huge swap files, running Onyx or Cocktail to clean up some of that mess might be useful.

    Next try to repair the permissions using diskutility.

    If that doesn't help out here is a very fast and quick tip to reinstall the system again:

    delete the folder named "System" from your main hard disk and restart from the system DVD.

    reinstall everything agan.

    A very clean way would be using copy cloner and backup the hard disk to an external.

    Erase the disk and start all over, then re-import the cloned disk.






    I use cocktail to run maintenance regularly and I have already used disk utility.

  13. I hate to say it because it's not something I have EVER done, but I think you should visit the Genius Bar at the Apple Store in Village Pointe. I know it's a jaunt from Bellevue because I looked at the map (only because Village Point didn't exist when I grew in Nebraska) but they should be able to shed light on the problems. I've never had to actually take a machine in, but I'm a real geek and have been lucky enough to be able to solve all my problems with some forum help here and there. The symptoms you describe and actions you've thoughtfully taken seem correct. I think having somebody really interacting with the machine would be the best course of action, especially for a switcher. As much as I love my Macs, it is a different paradigm than Windows machines.


    I also thought about driving up to Village Pointe it is a very nice store but I wanted to try and solve this on my own if possible. I consider myself to be a fairly competent and seasoned PC user but haven't used Unix since graduate school and I have never used a Mac before.

  14. All, I may just bite the bullet and try a fresh install of Mac OS X again. Before I do that I want to make sure I backup correctly and restore so I so not loose user email, preferences, etc. I use Data Backup 3.0 and have cloned the internal disk, backed up all user libraries, and backed up all "non-system" files. Can I install and then restore from user libraries and get user preferences, safari and firefox bookmarks, email accounts, and old email back up for all users? I am not as concerned about software I have loaded. I have install disks / files for all my programs.


    Any ideas would be greatly appreciated. One thing I noticed is that there is usually less documentation for Mac software than for Windows so I have to pick things up through forums, tech support, or by trial and error.


    Thanks for the help.

  15. Did you start having problems after upgrading to 10.4.10? If so, you might want to try rolling back to 10.4.9 and see if you have the same trouble. It might just be this update causing you problems. There are plenty of instructions around this forum on how to rollback to a previous version, so I might try that if you noticed the problems started around the time you updated. Just a thought.


    I did an archive reinstall to rollback to 10.4.9 but that did not seem to make a difference. I waited a while and then tried 10.4.10 again hoping Apple may have resolved a problem in first update that I was not aware of.

  16. Am I correct in my deduction that you got to 2.5 Gb of RAM by putting a 2Gb stick in the extra slot? You might want to try pulling the 512Mb card out. I'm not sure about these Intel Macs (mine is a little older than yours) but Macs tend to like matched pairs of RAM if you have more than one stick.


    Another thing you could try is to create a new user and run in that profile for a bit to see if it's the machine or your user that's having the problem.


    When it slows down, have you checked the Activity Monitor (it's like the Task Manager in Windows) to see what's sucking your cycles?


    I'm kind of rambling but there are lots of possibilities.



    I am having the same problem with all user accounts. The newer iMac supports up to 3 GB of ram, 2GB in one and 1 GB in the other. Research indicated that the newer iMac did not need pairs. I really do not want to waste 1GB by putting another 2GB stick in. I have checked the activity monitor a number of times. No problems with ram but write to hard disk is sometimes a problem. I also noted that when programs sometimes stop working they are not listed as a process. I have to force quit from the menu or dock.

  17. Welcome to the forum. Someone here will probably be able to help.


    Do you have any more robust drive utilities, like Tech Tool Pro, Drive Genius or Disk Warrior? Another thing you might want to try is a reinstallation of the OS. You really shouldn't need to Force Quit applications, especially iLife components, on any kind of regular basis,



    I did a reinstall using archive and reinstall but that did not seem to solve the problem. I am hesitant to do a full reinstall because I am so new to Mac OS and don't want to make a mistake and loose any preferences, settings, data, etc.

  18. I switched to Mac after being so impressed with my video ipod's performance and stability in Feb 07 when my old HP finally died. I have a 20" intel Core 2 Duo 2.16 GHz with 2.5 GB of ram running 10.4.10 and all software updates. I have added a few apps like quicksilver, cocktail, etc and have two WD My Book external USB hard disks for back up. I have noticed a significant decrease in performance in the last month or so. In particular, iTunes and iPhoto performance was slow and I had to force quite regularly but other programs like safari, finder, etc are crashing also (not getting kernal panic - just beach ball forever). I moved both th eiTunes and iPhoto libraries to the internal hard disk and that appears to have helped for those programs. I have also noticed that photo transfers from my Sony DSC-N1 have slowed considerably and that my external hard disk performance has been unpredictable.


    I have verified and repaired permissions, reset PRAM, and run Apple hardware utility on boot - hardware and, in particular, memory checks out ok. Could it be a USB problem? Anyone have any other ideas?


    By the way, I am planning on pulling the hard disks from my WD My Book external drives because I think the chipsets are causing some of my external hard drive performance issues. I am thinking about putting them into newer tech external cases. Any one done this before?