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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?" :)

Mac is like a PDA


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Ragle

 
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As I have explored my Mac OS X, I have been struck by the difference in things like installing new programs. For example, today I installed Myst 3: Exile (it's the only one of trilogy that runs natively in OS X and I still haven't been able to locate Classic).

There was no one-click installation. I just copied a file or two over to hard drive and that was it. The same has been true for many other applications, aside from big suites like Adobe and Macromedia.

The comparison that seems the most applicable is that of a Palm OS based PDA. Programs are similarly self-contained and it is simply a matter of dragging them into memory and that's it.

Am I missing something going on behind the scenes here? If I want to make back-ups of specific applications, is it really enough just to drag the actual app onto a CD?
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MAC-simus

 
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yep! thats it! (for most of them)
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Ragle

 
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Wow! That seems like both a throwback to the old days and a giant leap forward, all at the same time. This is especially true for a former PC user who has spent his share of time wading through the registry, trying to either fully uninstall a program or fix one that has gotten itself corrupted.
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Most of your settings are kept in the Library.. other than that, no horrible registry, ini files etc

You can actually 'open up' an application (control-click and 'show package contents') as they're a special folder with other bits inside, but there's no real need to.
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Ok, what are the big suites of software installing then? I am referring to Macromedia, Adobe, and Office. When they were installing, it looked very much like the PC equivalent of putting lots of files in lots of different places.
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flonejek
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They are mainly just archives which extract lots of files to application folders and check your license. Most big suites have an installer soley for license verification purposes, though they may also create a set of default settings in your library folder (most mac apps create those on first run). Adobe is a bit outdated with its install system though, msoffice 2004 has a folder you drag to your apps dir, and it asks you for serial on first run...
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Some programs do need files in different places. Especially ones which change system settings (eg 3rd party preference panes). The developers of the big applications probably just decided to make an installer because (1) it looks nice, (2) it's more professional and (3) there might be a few files (system extensions, libraries etc...) that add extra functionality to your computer and won't work if you just put them anywhere.

About 'finding classic' - it's not really an application, as such. You don't double click a file to open it - it's in your system preferences and runs in the background after you've started it. If you try to open an application that isn't compatible with OSX, classic will start up automatically (or ask you if you want to start it up). You can also set your computer to start up classic when you log in, and/or have Classic's status shown in the menu bar. Go to System Preferences > Classic.

I'm in your forums, writing sentences in a grammatically acceptable manner.
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VastDeathmaster
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Being a computer "old-timer", I compare OSX (loosely) to Windows 3.1.

Win3.1 didn't have drag and drop except for the most compact programs. But deleting a program was far simpler then than now.


There are a few programs out there for the Mac that are not simple drag and drop. Open Office for one.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VastDeathmaster
Being a computer "old-timer", I compare OSX (loosely) to Windows 3.1.

Win3.1 didn't have drag and drop except for the most compact programs. But deleting a program was far simpler then than now.


There are a few programs out there for the Mac that are not simple drag and drop. Open Office for one.
I consider a myself as a computer "old-timer" too (ages before Windows... ), but comparing OS X to Win3.1?!...hmm... very strange comparison.

The drag-and-drop feature to install/remove programs is surely quite old (it was on old Macs even BEFORE Windows), but unlike Microsoft, Apple always kept that way of installation because it IS the easiest and less messy way to do that. They never needed a registry, that's a Microsoft invention, in my opinion the worst thing they ever "invented"!

But I agree with you that there are some programs that need a little more than just drag and drop, although I think that OpenOffice is a bad example, because it isn't really OS X native, it needs the X11 window manager to run.
But, unlike Windows, the things some applications leave behind after removing don't affect the system itself...they just take space on the harddisk.
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