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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?" :)

Some general questions while I await my Mac

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Well, progress has been made, somewhat, since the last time I had to ask for help from the friendly folk around here. I did some research on external drives and being able to use my 100 gig drive as an archive for my music and document files. Several people pointed out that Macs will read NTFS systems, but not write to them. Snooping around the Internet, I found that FAT32 is both readable and writeable by Macs. Thus, I have reformatted my archive drive to FAT32 and am even now copying my data. In the meantime, I have a few questions:

1. I have been downloading various freeware Mac applications, along with the required driver files for various components I will be installing (wireless dongle, printer, etc.). I have noticed that these have come in either a .sit or .zip format. I am presuming that .sit is a Mac compression format, and I already know what .zip is. Should I assume that Panther will support these formats natively, as I have not been able to find a decompressor?

2. I have also been sorting through my various PC applications and games. Some, like the Myst 10th Anniversary DVD Edition, list support for both Mac and PC os' on the same disc. Others list nothing at all. Is there a site or an easy of knowing which ones will work and which won't, short of actually putting in the Mac and seeing what happens? (My iBook isn't here yet, so that last option isn't, well, an option.)

3. I have used a VGA to TV output converter device to send my PC screen to my television in times past. The documentation for the device doesn't mention anything about Mac support. Should I assume that the VGA output from the iBook is the same or similar to that of a PC?

4. Several websites I have visited, including Apple's, have mentioned virus protection for Macs. I was under the impression that Macs have not been troubled with virii, one of the advantages to owning one. Can someone point me to a site detailing such concerns?
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1. Yes, Panther will have no trouble opening either format using StuffIt, which should come already installed on your iBook.

2. I'd assume that if Mac support isn't mentioned, then it probably isn't going to work. I've never actually tried putting a Mac disk into a Windows machine to see what it looks like, so I can't really tell you what to look for on the disks. However, I think a good option is probably the one that you said "isn't", which would be to try them once your iBook arrives.

3. It should be the same. You'll just need to use the display adapter included with your iBook.

4. I think the main concern with Mac virus protection is to protect Windows-based computers that you may be exchanging files with. Even though your machine will be unaffected by the viruses, there is still the chance of spreading them to a PC, where they could cause the usual problems. In all honesty, other than the Windows concern, Mac virus protection is virtually unnecessary.


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1. .sit and .zip are native to Macs. OS X will decompress them without any additional software.

2. I don't know really how to tell. Maybe look online at the games' website. Chances are MOST of your games are PC only. If they don't mention MAC they probably won't work.

3. Yeah it should be the same. I'm not sure about iBooks, but it may have S-Video out too, which is probably better quality if you TV has S input.

4. There has been basically one or two very minor worm-type security threats for Macs that I think were designed just to prove a point - but even so they were not really harmful, dangerous, or wide-spread. I think a virus protection program is a good idea *just in case*. I use McAffe. I also use it because it can actually help protect my windows friends in the event that I somehow manage to forward a windows virus-infected e-mail to them. The bug wouldn't affect me, but without a virus program I wouldn't know if the e-mail was dangerous (besides common sense). That's all. You are right, Macs really AREN'T susceptible to virii.
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1. Yep your fine
2. Check the vendors site
3. You can get a video output adapter for your iBook that can use S-Video or VGA
4. I have had my powerbook for more than 1 year now and never had a virus protection program and know people who have had macs their whole life who never had a virus program....Your fine without it

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