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New Computer - My Macbuntu
I sort of turned to the dark side. I purchased an iMac.
I'll repeat that because it still sounds weird to me. I purchased an iMac. Before I start ducking from thrown shoes, let me explain. I wanted an all-in-one computer, meaning the monitor, speakers and components fit into one clean, compact shell. The only cord coming out the back of my computer is the power cord to the wall. I wanted this clean look because I was tired of managing cables. Sure it's a bit of a style over substance issue, but I'm so happy with my cord free environment, it's worth it. My other options were a Dell XPS One, and a Lenovo A600. I was heavily leaning towards the Dell until early March, when Apple released their beefy upgraded iMac. When Lenovo's new line of A600's came out, they couldn't compete.
Inside I have
Intel dual core 2.66 Ghz CPU (Q9450) with 6MB Cache
4 GB of RAM
Nvidia 9400M with 512 MB of RAM
320 GB HD
bluetooth and wi-fi
Outside I have
20 inch wide screen monitor
a slot load dvd/cd drive,
a built in camera with built in mic
4 usb ports, firewire 800 (i'll never use), and headphone/mic jacks.
cool small aluminium keyboard (has a USB cord, that I'll keep until apple release a wireless one with a 10 keypad)
shitty one button mouse that belongs in the 9th ring of hell. Ugly and useless
speakers are built into the monitor.
a pretty aluminium casing
The price at the Apple store was $1300 and I got a free Canon printer which I sold online for $70. A comparable Dell XPS One would be about $100 more, and Lenovo (IBM) couldn't compete with these two.
The one thing I dislike about Apple is Mac OS. I've never had a problem with Apple hardware. OSX is an operating system that feels like a shiny toy. I found it to be slow, and bulky. Upon my first boot I was able to make MacOS crash twice while I was downloading the boot manager rEFIt and the Ubuntu installation disc. The first time I was starting the Mac Mail application to see how it worked, which It never did. The second time I was using disk utility to simply make a partition. Uggg. I never had the intention of running Mac OS anyway. I'm a linux man at home and Ubuntu is my flavor of choice at the moment. Also, I like a windowed GUI instead of being forced to use a task bar for every application I have open. Apple is sort of Communist that way. One more thing, MacOS did not recognize my external hard drive. It would appear but it wouldn't be readable. Windows and Linux OS's read it just fine.
There are a lot of resources to help one setup Linux on a Mac. It's not as straight forward as a typical computer because Apple boots are based on EFI (the future) instead of BIOS (the past.) Nevertheless, it's quite easy to get an install of another OS going. I did keep a small MacOS partition for firmware upgrades to the iMac hardware.
I had a small issue with sound at first, where I couldn't get the speakers to work in Ubuntu. Oddly, the headphone jack did work. After a week of searching for help on forums, I eventually realized that my iMac was so new, Linux didn't support it yet. That didn't stop friendly folk at Launchpad from pointing me to some alpha sound drivers that got everything working.
I have to say that my Macbuntu is the smoothest and prettiest computer I've ever owned. In the past when I built my own, I typically skimped on parts to save money and get exactly what I wanted. My old computer was running, but it's guts were 5 years old and starting to show some slow down. It has a nice new home now.
First boot with Ubuntu
My desktop nicely setup
So smooth and fast in action
BTW, one last thing. The Apple store in Pasadena is full of idiots. They accidentally over-billed me for the RAM upgrade (2GB to 4GB) and couldn't figure out how to reverse it. When they finally did, it was done wrong. Management got involved and they got it wrong again. It's taken 3 weeks, but everything is straightened out now. I'm sure most stores have competent sales people, but Pasadena definitely does not.
Dell XPS One -
2.3Mhz cpu, 2 meg cache, fast intel vid card, 4 gb of ram = $1499
Lenovo A600 - 3 gb or ram 2.0 ghz, slow intel vid card, $1000
iMac - 2.66ghz, 6 megs of cache, nvidia 9400, 4 gb of ram= $1300 minus $70 for the printer I got for free and sold online.
my happiness with Ubuntu on this fast iMac = priceless!
Then I realized, that to cut and paste it, I highlighted the text, right clicked, clicked copy, came down to the box, and right clicked, clicked paste.