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Thread: ALERT! Need some advice right away!

  1. #1
    ALERT! Need some advice right away!
    My PC may be bought this very afternoon by my roommate. He is arranging the funds with his bank at the present moment and I have started the process of migrating my data to a spare hard drive. I am about 90% sure this transaction will take place this afternoon and so I have some pressing concerns as I try to safely store my data.

    1. I plan to house this spare drive in an enclosure from CompUSA which will enable it to act as an external USB hard-drive. This drive contains my music collection (some 30 gigs of MP3's) in addition to my Office-created documents and e-books, and all of my pictures (in formats from PSD to JPG). Will the Mac I end up purchasing be able to use it as it, or will reformatting be necessary? If reformatting isn't necessary, will it pick up all those files as being usuable?

    2. If my data needs to be burned to disc instead of the drive (if it has to be reformatted) what format does the disc need to be burned in and will my PC using Nero be able to accomplish this task? What about DVD+R?

    3. If I have back-up copies of my Adobe CD discs on CD-R, will my new Mac be able to install from them or will I need to make new ones?

    I am sure I will think of new questions as this process continues. I currently have about 17 minutes left before my music completes copying and then I will start on the rest of my documents. People with answers can either post them here or email them to Thanks!!

  2. #2
    Also, will my Divx encoded movie files work on the Mac? What about others with MPG or AVI extensions?

  3. #3

    Avalon's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jun 25, 2004
    Luxemburg, Europe
    1. Yes, Mac OS X will be able to read the files on that disk, but I'm not sure about writing on it. If it's in NTFS format (Win2000/WinXP) OS X can not write on it. If it's FAT32 (Win9x) I'm not sure, as I never tried it myself. But it would be best to make a backup copy of all those files on your Mac, reformat the disk in journaled HFS+ (Mac OS X standard) and then copy the files right back to the disk.
    Oh, and it's called "disk initializing" on a Mac, not "disk formatting" ;-)
    If you have the apropriate software, your files will be usable on the Mac. For most filetypes everything's included into Mac OS X, for special ones you need the right programs (XLS/PPS/PPT = MS Office, PSD = Photoshop etc.)

    2. You can safely burn your discs with Nero as you do for a PC, the Mac can read them. Concerning DVD+R, my Combo-drive didn't read them until the system update 10.3.3, but since them it reads them without trouble. But to be sure, use DVD-R.

    3. I suppose that your Adobe CDs are Windows versions, which you definitely cannot install under Mac OS X

  4. #4

    rman's Avatar
    Member Since
    Dec 24, 2002
    Los Angeles, California
    Here is what I see, others will fill in the blanks. Starting bottom up.

    4. You will most likely need to get VLC media player to play the divx. I don't know about avi. mpg can be played by quicktime or vlc.

    3. If that is your Adobe CD install discs, then you will not be able to use them. OS X will be able to read the discs but, you will not be able to run the problem. You will need virtual PC to run your PC applications.

    2. Not knowing which Apple product you are going to purchase. If you plan to make DVD back ups, I would go with DVD-Rs to be on the safe side.

    1. In most cases, as soon as you plug in the external device the OS will see it. That is also true with external disk drives. I can not tell you too much able usb drive, since i only use firewire drives. I am assume you should be able to access your data after the drive in connected.
    Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass, It's about learning to dance in the rain!

  5. #5

    Avalon's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jun 25, 2004
    Luxemburg, Europe
    VLC is a good choice, but I also use Mplayer in addition, as it handles some files that don't work on VLC or Quicktime.
    For DivX, you need to download the latest DivX codec for Mac (I believe it's 5.1.1) and install it, after that you can play DivX with all Mediaplayer, including Quicktime. is a good source too for all those things...

  6. #6
    Excellent help all around, everyone! Thanks very much!

    Now, what about Outlook and my data files from it? Are able to be imported into Mac's equivalent?

  7. #7

    witeshark's Avatar
    Member Since
    Mar 09, 2004
    Miami FL
    I would look here

  8. #8
    For what it's worth, I purchased 6 USB drive enclosures for the purpose housing my 65GB MP3 collection as well as my 40GB+ worth of files from the past 8 or so years as well as a backup drive. Don't ask me why because I couldn't even begin to explain but every drive that I put into one of those enclosures has gone bad! I have used a mixed variety of drives all with the same outcome. I broke down and purchased an Maxtor USB 80 GB external drive and haven't had a single problem yet.

    These are what I had:

    As for your PST file, I have yet to find a way to directly import that data into entourage. I did find a site stating that if you exported from outlook to mozilla on your pc, you will be able to import your mozilla boxes into entourage.

    good luck

  9. #9

    Member Since
    Jul 22, 2003
    Hamilton College
    I had an 80gb firewire drive for about 2 years but it died on me...i got everything off at least.

    I just got my Lacie 250 (well 233gb) porsche hd and its very nice
    Don't forget to use the new User Reputation System

  10. #10
    Well, CompUSA was out of the hard drive enclosures I had seen last week, so that will have to wait just a bit. In the meantime, it looks like I have an iBook on the way, to be arriving on Tueday, if things go right. This is my last night with my PC. (*sniff sniff*)

    In the meantime, I learned something interesting while I was at the store. While there, I wandered over to the Apple area to check out their iBooks. Their least expensive one was the 1 ghz G4 for $1099. I pulled the sales manager aside and asked if they honored the educational discount for students. He said they would most likely just give it to me for the employee discount...which is the store's cost! He then went to check on what that actually was.

    He came back with a printout (which he gave me) of the store's actual invoice cost for those units: $1021. Apparently there is no money to be made at all except for the AppleCare addition. He said he would honor Apple's website price of $949 if I wanted one.

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