Tuesday, I was browsing Craigslist and came across a great deal on an iMac. It’s from 2008, but the specs are modest. It’s a year newer than my PC, so I thought it would be a good way for me to finally get my hands on a Mac.
I’ve been wanting to own an iMac for a long time. However, since the price was so high, I haven’t yet put the money into it. With this new discovery, I was able to get a used iMac in good shape (with the memory expanded from 1GB to 3GB).
Even though the computer was listed on Craigslist, it turns out that it belonged to our church. They were using it in the print shop. They recently got a new printer with a built-in controller and didn’t need this one any more. I was able to pick it up for $250. I was going to try to haggle, but when I learned it was the church’s computer, I decided to pay full asking price as a way to give something extra to the church. I’m pretty sure it doesn’t count toward my tithe, but I felt it was the right thing to do. :)
When I got home, I immediately installed OS X Yosemite on it. It originally had OS X Lion, but I wanted to go modern and get all the new features of Yosemite. After installing the new OS, I transferred all of my music off of my backup drive to iTunes.
I ran into trouble with two pieces of software. The first was Microsoft Office. I was able to download it from the Office365 website, but when I went to run it for the first time, the authorization program displayed server errors. I was never able to get it running.
The other problem I ran into was that the version of Propellerhead Reason that I have (version 4) is not supported on OS X Yosemite. There are work arounds that I’ll have to try later.
Update: 6/6/15 – I was able to get Reason 4 working by installing Reason 8 demo, running it, renaming the folder in Applications from “Reason 8” to “Reason”, then installing Reason 4 over it.
The worst part about all of this is that this is my birthday present, so I had to pack it all up and put it in the closet for three weeks. I’ll get to “open” it on my birthday.
After using the Mac for a few hours, I am a firm believer in the quality of the Apple hardware and software. I recently had to reinstall Windows 8.1 on my computer because of strange behavior after installing the .NET runtime. To be fair, I did install a pre-release version of Visual Studio 2015 on it, so that’s probably what did it. However, I’ve had too many problems with Windows in the past. I realize that I’ll have issues with Mac, as well, but I like the way OS X works.
I’m still keeping my PC to use for games, so I’m not totally switching. However, Laurie’s not too pleased with the idea of having a computer on the floor by the desk and a computer with an integrated monitor and another monitor on the desk. I think she’d rather I just pare it down to a single iMac on the desk with a wireless keyboard and mouse. Minimalism is her goal, I think. Right now, it’s a rat’s nest of computer cords because of power cords, computer speaker cords, and external drives.
Still, I think I’d like to at least have the extra monitor for the iMac.
Even though I just bought this computer, I think I’m going to start saving up for a new computer next year. I’d like to get the 27″ iMac with a better video card in it and 16GB RAM. I might even go for 32GB RAM if the price has dropped by then.
Now I’m starting to feel guilty for my blatant consumerism. More e-waste for the environment, etc. At least I’m not in the market for a new Apple Watch.
It’s like a disease. The more Apple devices and software I get, the more I want. I can totally understand the addiction now. When I went to set up my printer last night, I fully expected that it would involve me navigating to the HP website, putting in the model number of my printer on their support page, and downloading the Mac driver. Then, I expected that I’d have to figure out what the IP address was on the printer and go through all of the hassles that I have to when I do it on Windows. Nope. I just searched for “printer” and the printers panel came up. I pressed the “+” button and my printer was listed in the available printers. I chose it from the list and added it. Done. This is because I’m using an Apple Airport Time Capsule as my WiFi router and it already knew about the printer on the network. It exposed it as an AirPrint device and my Mac recognized it. I was so shocked at how easy it was that I just had to print something to make sure it was really hooked up. So I printed a web page. It worked. Also, when I pulled up the Time Machine backup program, it immediately recognized my Time Capsule and I was quickly able to get the computer backup up. I only had to wait for it to transmit the backup across WiFi to the Time Capsule. It was very easy. This is why I want to switch to using a Mac.
Windows can be such a PITA. I’m getting too old to deal with that micromanagement. When I was younger, I enjoyed the challenges that PCs gave me. I liked switching jumpers on sound cards and modems to get them to work together in the computer. I enjoyed altering my CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT for maximum EMM386 settings. I enjoyed the challenges of installing a fresh copy of the OEM version of Windows Media Center. Not anymore. Now, I just want to come home, spend a few hours playing my game, creating music, and watching videos on YouTube. I don’t want to repave my machine every three months because I wanted to try the latest Microsoft framework.
Of course, I’m probably going to install the latest release of Visual Studio Code and run ASP.NET vNext on my Mac, but hopefully that won’t crash my system. If it does, then I might completely swear off Microsoft software at home.
I rely on Microsoft ecosystem to make a living. I spend my day on a Windows 7 machine using Microsoft Outlook to do my email, Microsoft Office to create documentation, and Microsoft Visual Studio to write source code that runs on a Microsoft web server. So I can’t get too cocky about this. However, I don’t see anything wrong with switching my home systems to use the reliable choice. Windows 10 may be the solution, but I think it’s a little too late to the game for me. I realize that there are ferociously loyal Microsoft fans that will see me as a loser, but I don’t care. I’ve seen the other side and it’s beautiful. :)