Tag Archives: OS-X

K9ZW Computers in the Shack

Boy do I have a mess in the shack – several computers not very well coordinated due to a split vision and having been acquired over too much time.

My Flex-5000A with PowerSDR runs on a 4-5 year old Dell tower that really isn’t adequate. Some of my peeves with PowerSDR can be lain at the feet of a marginal computer. Dual core Windows-XP box with not really that much going for it, the highlight is having dual screens and the requisite Firewire port.

Elsewhere in the house I do all writing, and all my “home work” from work, on an early Aluminum MacBook. This is the smallest & slowest MacBook but is running the latest Mountain Lion.

For portable operations I retired a now defunct IBM Thinkpad and replaced it with a decent Windows XP-Pro larger Thinkpad. Nothing fancy but when a decent battery was added it is close to a portable version of the Dell Tower.

Retired, but lingering around are a MacMini (early series) that my youngest bloated the hard disk gaming and won’t run. Have been meaning to see if I can coax the machine back to life, at least enough to rescue pictures.

An older G5 iMac is around too – it was one that the power supply had the counterfeit capacitor issue, fixed under “quiet recall” and hasn’t really been used since.

Then my newest computer is running on my project’s desk – a Raspberry Pi. A neat little ARM based Linux computer, it has been running as a “burn-in” on the desk.

There are enough parts and licenses to put together a few wobbly generic PC’s with either Linux installs or using one of the Window’s Licenses if Microsoft will issue a key for replacement hardware.

Looking forward my wants and needs are:

  • Running PowerSDR for the Flex-5000A (Windows)
  • Running SmartSDR for the upcoming Flex-6000 (Windows)
  • Running EZNEC Antenna Modeling (Windows)
  • Running N4PY for the TenTec Pegasus and Jupiter (Windows)
  • Running MixW, JT65HF, DDUTIL, PowerMaster and similar station accessory programs (Windows)
  • Running the Bengali CW Software (Windows)
  • Running fldigi and related programs (Windows, Mac OSX, or Linux)
  • Running MacLoggerDX (Mac OSX)
  • Running CocoaModem (Mac OSX)
  • Running cocoaNEC (Mac OSX)
  • Running Sibelius Music Software (Windows or Max OSX)
  • Running Noteworthy Composer (Windows)
  • Running Scrivener (Complex Document Editing) Software (Windows or Mac OSX)
  • Full Word Processing Software – needs to exchange files with MS Word (Windows, Mac OSX, or Linux)
  • Full Spreadsheet Software – needs to exchange files with MS Excel (Windows, Mac OSX, or Linux)
  • Full Presentation Software – needs to exchange files with MS Powerpoint (Windows, Mac OSX, or Linux)
  • Service my iPod – (Windows or Mac OSX)
  • Downloading and Organizing my Photos (prefer Mac OSX)

Then after that I get into things I do occasionally, rather than regularly.

Really looks like two avenues of choice – an Apple iMac or MacPro with Bootcamp or Parallels to run Windows, or two separate machines with one Windows and one OSX basis (also perhaps running Bootcamp or Parallels as well.)

The new iMac really is a looker – and my Apple experience is much more positive than my Windows experience.

But then there are the Flex-5000A’s PowerSDR and Firewire needs.

Presently I am leaning to upgrading the shack’s Dell with a roll-you-own Windows-7 box AND replace the MacBook with an iMac running Parallels/Win-7.

The MacPro is pricy enough that it is not really justifiable for home use, but wow it would be sweet.

How would you set this up?



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Complete System Restore – OS-X Timemachine Saves My Data, Again!

This is a screen I had hoped to NEVER see – the screen of doing a complete system restore on my MacBook after another Hitachi 160 GB Hard Drive died:

Completely Restoring my MacBook from an OS-X 10.5 TimeMachine Backup

Once the new drive was installed (5 minutes) it is only the matter of loading the OS-X 10.5 Disk, going just a few steps into an install until the upper menu bar shows, select “Utilities” and follow the prompts for a Restore from Backup.

The actual backup will be timed a few hours before the Macbook’s internal disk went out.  It looks like the actual full restore will take about 2 hours.

As the “Restore from Backup” option only offers Full Backup Images to restore from, I am hoping I can use the hourly incremental backups to later bring my system up to at most an hour off of when the failure occurred.

This is the fourth Hard Disk in this Macbook.  I’m going to write to Apple to see if they can offer a solution to what appears to be a non-enviornmental host machine problem.

It sure does seem that TimeMachine used with a decent external hard drive saved me from having the sort of significant data loss of the earlier disk failures.


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Previous TimeMachine Posts:

Deja Vu OS-X Style – Timemachine Revisited

First Use of TimeMachine – This Rules!

Going Back in Time – “Time Machine” on the Macbook

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Deja Vu OS-X Style – Timemachine Revisited

Apple has released a clever ad about the Timemachine feature of OS-X 10.5 Leopard.

(Click on the picture for the movie)


Apple Timemachine Ad

(Click on the picture for the movie)

I’ve written before about Timemachine, and again it is simply a fantastic integration of backup technology into a graphical user interface and software suite.

Going Back in Time – “Time Machine” on the Macbook

First Use of TimeMachine – This Rules!



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First Use of TimeMachine – This Rules!

Ok where did those 43 emails containing notes and article write-up outlines & stubs go to?

I know I wasn’t at my best when I was trying to move them to their own folder last night…. but it turns out I managed to close OS-X Mail without pasting them anywhere!

Essentially I Cut them and Dropped them in electronic ether…. bad move.

They disappeared.

Forty-Three articles in the making zapped by significant user error… or perhaps not?

Enter OS-X 10.5’s TimeMachine Backup system.

Painless to roll back to before I messed up.

Simple to select the messages needed, and Clicked to Restore them.

A bit of whirl and screens moving before the restored messages were restored to a special “Timemachine Restored Messages” folder.

Check out my previous posting on Timemachine for more details!




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Going Back in Time – “Time Machine” on the Macbook

The OS-X Leopard Time Machine Browser

A quick jot about the impressions of the Time Machine feature of OS-X 10.5 Leopard.

Apple has given me the tools to dissect my computing. 

  1. OS-X “Spaces” gives me the Linux-Like multiple desktops open for one user.
  2. Bootcamp” gives me the OS-X or Windows choice.
  3. and “Time Machine” gives me the dimension of being able to work with a file in its various past incarnations.

So my computing options are like a 3-D matrix – easy navigation through which Operating System, which Work Space and which point in time Back & Forth through Time Machine.

And most importantly after blowing up a couple hard disks is the full backup that resides on my Time Machine serviced External Drive.

Pretty neat options and rather well implemented.



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Another Big Cat – Apple Rolls Out Leopard (and why I am excited)

Apple OS-X Leopard

That Apple Computer rolls out of Leopard OS-X 10.5 this Friday is hardly news. 

The Media is full of public announcements telling us all about it.

But the reasons why I am extremely eager to put it into use are more personal.

A number of the new features look to have direct applications for my use.

The enhanced iChat will make supporting relatives living around the world so much easier.  By being able to “share” their desktops I will be able to have a good look at their questions & needs.  Should be slick!

Time Machine backup system is a double edged sword.  Recovery of children’s lost homework or the file I loose will be helpful.  My XYL Alison thinks being able to scroll back and forth through various edits is really trick.  But it does bring home that a deleted file may live on in systems with backups on-line.  It will be interesting to see what the explicit-delete-file process is.

The improved Desktop will help keep me organized with “stacks.”  I use project folders currently, but this looks like a nice way to arrive at the same point with a bit more flare.

A better integrated Mail and iCal system appears to have automated or semi-automated a number of task that frustrate under OS-X 10.4 or under Windows.  The way it handles email-to-calendar and email-to-Address Book will be a great improvement.  The harmonization started in Tiger OS-X 10.4 certainly will move way ahead under Leopard 10.5.

The implimentation of Linux Spaces will be another incorporation of the best of other systems into the Apple OS-X product.  I can see having a Blog Space, an Amateur Radio Space, a Correspondence Space and a Fun Space running like I do on a Linux Box.

There is much more, but so far the details look to really support one of my goals with computers, to make the machine & software as transparent to the task as possible.

I have a copy (family pack) arriving on Leopard Day and then have four machines to update with the new OS-X 10.5

More after the this Friday!



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