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Switcher Hangout The place for switchers to discuss their new machines, and how to work with OS X. General support can be had here for newbie stuff, like "How do I restart my new iMac?" :)

Idiot proof set up for new iMac anyone?


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Sawday

 
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Just ordered a new iMac for my son's eighteenth birthday (Lucky devil - can't afford to make the switch myself just yet!). Bearing in mind that he's a teenager and 'knows everything' he'll want to start playing with it and will never get around to reading any instructions that come with it. I'm a bit concerned that might just get into a bit of a mess or even seriously screw things up if he is not organised.
Never having touched a mac I won't be able to help him much and he never listens to me anyway so guys can anyone give me a simple bullet-point list of immediate essentials that he should do with a brand new machine. I'm thinking particularly about creating accounts (user/administrator etc) rather than downloading software (his imac won't have internet acces to begin with - wireless network comes with my own imac later in the year).
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KoDorSean

 
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My father is a retired school teacher and he raised me on Apple computers. I have used them for 15+ years and in my opinion if you have ANY computer knowledge at all no matter what OS you use you will be able to figure out OSX very fast.. When your son gets his mac and turns it on it will walk him through all the basic steps. Time/date/language/admin account etc.


here is some great info:

"A switcher's guide to OS X Software"

A switcher's guide to OS X Software

"Mac-Forums Switchers FAQ and Information"

Mac-Forums Switchers FAQ and Information


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thermidor

 
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When he turns the machine on it will walk him through the initial setup steps. Apart from that, I'd leave him to it. You don't have to worry, this isn't a PC we're talking about!
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if he screws it up..... you have a talented kid on your hands.

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James

 
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It has been my experience over the last 35 years that there is no "idiot proof" anything about computers. They keep improving the quality of the idiots so that any new "idiot proof" scheme soon fails with regularity.

Outside of telling him DO NOT BITE THE POWERCORD there really isn't all that much you can do. OS X is fairly easy to learn to use especially if you have any computer experience at all. There isn't much he can do outside of corrupt a few vital files, and that should be covered with the install cd that usually comes with your computer. Let him play with it and tinker a bit and maybe after a few reinstalls he will get tired of reinstalling and quit what ever he was doing to cause them.

Outside of pray a lot, what else is there to do with a teen ager... other than laughing a lot, it makes em mad and they will try harder not to give you anything to laugh at...(G)

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Village Idiot

 
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You internet connection is wired (assuming you have one) ?

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You might consider buying an external firewire drive and backing up the system using SuperDuper! (silly name, great software). SuperDuper! can backup the entire system, even making the backup bootable, so a complete restore is a sinch. I've done this, not because I needed to but to experiment.

My external hard drive has three partitions on it, one for a complete system backup, one for daily backups, just files, and one for weekly backups, just files.

I use the Rocstor drives since they're recommended by my local Apple dealer but of course there's plenty others out there. The SuperDuper! is much preferred in the Apple community over all other solutions, both for it's ease of use and for it's system backup completeness.

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Do not rename your home folder.
Do not put mini CDs in the slot.
Do not put anything in the Trash that you want to keep.
You want to keep Safari, Mail, System Preferences and the Address Book. Even if you choose not to use them. Trust me.
Do not rename your home folder!

Creating a non-administrator account is definitely a good idea.
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Smell The Glove

 
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Has anybody mentioned not renaming your Home folder??

Seriously, that's one mistake I see made more often by recent switchers than just about any other.
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Also, don't rename your home folder.

Seriously, is there a setting, command, or utility a Mac owner can use that would make the home folder's name protected? It still amazes me that Apple lets the OS ship with such an obvious problem.
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TheMonkeyProjec
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heh, which do you mean by "home" folder? The one labeled with your name?


and what happens if you DO rename it?

Otherwise i'll be forced to rename it and find out...haha
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technologist

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheMonkeyProjec View Post
heh, which do you mean by "home" folder? The one labeled with your name?


and what happens if you DO rename it?

Otherwise i'll be forced to rename it and find out...haha
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Sawday

 
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Thanks everyone. I think I got the point about not renaming the home folder but you can bet that's the first thing he'll do!!!

And Village Idiot (I'm sure you're not really) yes my internet is wired and no I don't have a home network.
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When you first start up a new Mac, it guides you through a bunch of questions. One regards the account you want to set up. Some People suggest creating an administrator account during that question period. The first account has all the privileges needed to maintain the machine. Accounts created after that via the System Preferences --> Accounts usually don't have that much power unless you specify it.

The theory behind the above is that it will help keep novice users out of trouble and make it more difficult for malware (such as viruses) to get in. I'm unaware of any wild viruses for OS X at this time. It will not stop the novice from renaming his home directory. It will stop him from deleting applications and other files the OS requires.

The hassle comes when you need to do something that requires privileges, like install new software or apply Apple patches. You need to remember to log into the admin account.

Another tip is to select a decent username. The one Apple creates by default is based on the First and Last name you enter. If I recall properly, it was firstname + first letter of lastname. I didn't like that so choose the one that has been used at every company I've worked at for the last 19 years. First initial of first name and my last name (it is short), all lower case by the way. The login prompt will use your full name.

You may be overestimating your kids adventure to mess up his new machine. He has a self interest to keep it working. I'd encourage him to use this site and the Apple support discussion boards. Both are great and have the ability to search for questions. When you can't find the answer that way, many users are willing to respond to well formed questions.
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Village Idiot

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sawday View Post
Thanks everyone. I think I got the point about not renaming the home folder but you can bet that's the first thing he'll do!!!

And Village Idiot (I'm sure you're not really) yes my internet is wired and no I don't have a home network.
From post on here, it seems that Mac wireless devices are picky with what brand of router they prefer.

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