Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Snow Leopard is Up and Running

Over the weekend, I purchased a family 5 pack of Mac OSX 10.6 Snow Leopard and upgraded my wife's Macbook Pro, my daughter's iMac and my Macbook Air.

Although I did the simple automated upgrade for my wife and daughter, I used the opportunity to return my Macbook Air to its original factory settings and start from scratch - call it a technology spa day.

Over the past year, I've added many applications to my Macbook Air including HP printer drivers (which are often unstable and buggy), Office 2008 with Entourage (Entourage is always unstable and buggy), and several versions of Citrix/Webex/Gotomeeting etc.

The end result of adding many applications, many upgrades and many configuration changes during my Mac learning curve resulted in less than optimal performance. Thus, I backed up my important files to a USB drive then booted the Snow Leopard DVD, selected Utilities, Disk Utility and formatted/erased my hard drive by overwriting its contents with zeros.

Snow Leopard installed itself in about 30 minutes without a single error. I installed iWork '09 as my productivity suite and Aperture 2 to serve as my photo manager. I restored my files, added the HP network printer (without having to install HP software), and configured Mail, iCal and Addressbook to work with Exchange 2007.

The end result - a completely stable, fast computer with a very trim OS/application footprint - about 10 gigs, leaving 70 gigs free on my hard drive.

I've been running Snow Leopard/iWork/Aperture for 3 days now. I'm using Safari 4.0.3 as my browser and Preview as my document/PDF viewer - all 100% Apple software. The experience thus far has been a joy - very fast boot times, very fast application launch times, perfect hiberation/wake and seamless Exchange 2007 integration.

One of the great features in Snow Leopard is Screen Recording with automated You Tube uploads - a great feature for creating educational materials. As a test, I created a demonstration video of Google Health/Beth Israel Deaconess Personal Health Record integration.

I highly recommend Snow Leopard. My family gave the home CIO a big thumbs up.


Jennifer said...

I'd understood that the HMS VPN, like others using Juniper Network Connect, was not compatible with Snow Leopard. Have you found a way around that incompatibility, or does your work not require connecting to secured HMS resources?

MetalHaze said...

Just FYI, Snow Leopard does not natively boot into 64 bit mode.

If you want to try running Snow Leopard in 64 bit mode, hold down the '6' and '4' keys on the keyboard during the boot up process right after you turn the computer on.

Most stuff prob wont work correctly in 64 bit mode, but most of the native Apple application should since they were all coded for 64 bit compatibility.

Again, to boot back into 32 bit mode, hold down '3' and '2' when during the start up process after a restart.

Margaret Polaneczky, MD (aka TBTAM) said...

Thanks for this post - I've been toying with the idea of upgrading my and my daughter's macbooks to Snow Leopard, and this post convinced me.(not to mention the cheap price...) I also like your spring cleaning of your computer - a great idea!