Mac News Review

Apple Ends DIY Repairs, Does Mac mini Kill the Used Mac Market?, USB Drive Kit Matches Mac mini, and More

This Week's Apple and Desktop Mac News

Compiled by Charles Moore and edited by Dan Knight - 2005.05.13

This Week's Apple and Desktop Mac News

PowerBook, iBook, iPod, and other portable computing is covered in The 'Book Review. iPod news is covered in The iNews Review.

News & Opinion

Tips

Tech Trends

New Products

Desktop Mac Deals

News & Opinion

Apple Ends DIY Repair Procedure

hardmac.com's Lionel says:

"Though many reports from our readers were very positive, it appears that several Apple Certified Resellers received Macs partially repaired, or even definitely damaged.

"This must be the reason why Apple decided to stop this system with the new revision of iMac. Except for fancoolers, it won't be possible to get parts directly from Apple. The computer must be repaired by an Agreed Apple Center."

After the Mac mini, Is There Still a Market for Used Macs?

mymac.com's Neale Monks says:

"In a recent Podcast, MyMac.com editor Tim Robertson mentioned the fact that the introduction of the Mac Mini might well have made my recent Scroll Down Book "Buying Used Macs" somewhat obsolete. The argument boils down to this: with the Mac Mini offering Internet connectivity, enough horsepower to run most home and office software, and support for all the modern USB and FireWire peripherals, is there really any need to buy a used Mac at all? After all, for $500 you not only get a fast, modern Mac that should work well with the keyboard, mouse, and monitor you already have, but you also get peace of mind knowing your purchase comes with a twelve month warranty and compatibility with the Mac OS for at least the next couple of years.

"Bolstering Tim's argument was his observation that sales of used Macs on eBay seem to have been depressed for a while, with Macs that might have sold briskly a year ago now sitting around for days without being bid on. But is this observation really to do with the Mac Mini? Is this really the end of used Mac market?

"I don't think so."

Buy a Mac mini or Upgrade Your Cube?

ATPM's Matthew Glidden says:

"Apple recently introduced its new kid on the block, the Mac mini. The tiny size and quiet operation immediately recalled my veteran and familiar Cube, chugging away on the desktop, a model long since discontinued.

"The Cube's small, silent concept kept it appealing long after the development of bigger, meaner Macs. 'Sure,' my internal user would say, 'they're faster, but how about those fans? Imagine the racket! Ah, peace and quiet.'

"The Mini rattled my smug internal user with its low price and superior form factor. Was it time to trade in the Cube and shrink the desktop even further? It was probably an illusion, but my Cube suddenly felt older and slower. To forestall the inevitable, I let my internal user shop for upgrade options."

Purple Mac mini Drive and Case Mod

purple case modMacMod contributor Adam Eberbach says:

"When the mini was first released I was kind of disappointed to learn it had a laptop drive. Slow, low capacity and expensive to upgrade! I did a little research and decided an adapter was needed. Since I could find none for sale, I designed one. My first project was to build a mini server in a PC case with two 250GB drives mirrored - kind of kludgey, as it used two power supplies and was way too big and noisy even at mini-ATX size. Shortly after I picked up a 'mystic' G4 400MHz gig-E machine and since the mini no longer needed to do server duty I could revise the mini modification. This is the story of the purple mini."

Mac mini Carputer

Custom truck mods says:

"I had plans to set up the factory kit to accommodate an Apple iPod. Then I got to thinking, the iPod I'd need to hold all my songs hasn't been made yet - a 60GB iPod photo would just barely make it. At that cost, it's actually cheaper to buy a Mac Mini... I know, there are a lot of additional costs with the latter, but work with me here. The ideas started to flow; music, movies, GPS, WiFi browsing and Email, video recording... My mind was made up pretty quickly. Another nice feature is that I can pull into the driveway and sync up to the server to download new MP3s via WiFi and a custom rsync script. As an avid photographer, having some place to dump tons of images from a Flash Card or Microdrive without worry of having the laptop handy is icing on the cake....

"Getting the Mac Mini was the easy part. Now for all the other bits that'll actually make it work in an automotive environment. I didn't care for wireless transmitters to get the audio from the Mac Mini to the head unit and amp so something wired was called for - to get the best quality. Sadly the stock head unit doesn't have pre-amp inputs which meant the only real option I had was an FM modulator."

PowerLogix G3 and G4 Upgrades Are Tiger-friendly

PR: Anyone who already owns or is planning to purchase a PowerLogix G3 or G4 upgrade will not have to worry whether it is compatible with Apple Computer's latest operating system OS X Tiger. The answer is an emphatic yes.

Other World Computing (OWC) is happy to offer completely Tiger-friendly PowerLogix upgrades via its website.

"We don't want people to worry that if they are using a PowerLogix processor they can't upgrade to Tiger, because they can," said Larry O'Connor, president of OWC. "PowerLogix processors, whether already installed or being considered, will not only work with but enhance the performance of Apple's latest operating system."

PowerLogix's G4 upgrades are available in speeds of 1 Gigahertz (GHz) to Dual G4/1.8GHz and priced as low as $179. Upgrades are compatible with PowerMac G4 AGP Graphics (aka Sawtooth), Gigabit Ethernet, Digital Audio, QuickSilver and Cube Apple models.

PowerLogix's G3 ZIF upgrades are available in speeds of 1GHz and 1.1GHz with 1MB 1:1 L2 Cache from $229, and are compatible with PowerMac G3 Beige, G3 Blue&White and G4 'Yikes' PCI Apple models.

A PowerLogix Pismo G3/900MHz Upgrade with 1MB 1:1 L2 Cache is offered for $349.

Cache enabling software is required for ZIF, Pismo, Lombard, Wallstreet and PCI upgrades and is available free of charge at <http://www.macsales.com/PLTIGER>

Tips

iMac G5 Parts You Can Install Yourself

An updated Apple Knowledge Base article says:

"Think you need a new part? You can replace many of your iMac G5 and iMac G5 (Ambient Light Sensor) computer's parts yourself.

"The iMac G5 computers are designed to make it easy for you to install replacement parts if you need to. The parts you can install yourself are:

  • AirPort Extreme Card (original iMac G5 only)
  • Memory - DDR 400 MHz (PC3200) SDRAM
  • Hard drive
  • Optical drive
  • Power supply
  • LCD display
  • Inverter
  • Upper fans
  • Lower fan (17-inch iMac G5 (Ambient Light Sensor) only)

"The Mid-plane assembly for the original iMac G5 includes the main logic board, the G5 processor, modem card, lower fan, input/output ports, AirPort antenna, built-in Bluetooth module and antenna (if the computer has Bluetooth capability). If any of these parts require service, please see an Authorized Service Provider."

Mad Mac mini Multimedia Machine, Part 1: Load Linux on the Mac mini

IBM Developerworks' Lewin Edwards says:

"The Mac mini is an ideal low-cost, high-performance PowerPC development platform for numerous applications. Learn how to install and configure Linux on the mini. Future articles will add the software required to make it into a stand-alone multimedia appliance.

"This short series of articles shows you how to take a conveniently inexpensive, high-end PowerPC platform (specifically, an Apple Mac mini) and build it into a home multimedia appliance using Linux. At the end of the series, you'll have a stand-alone device that can play slide shows of images, audio, and movies, and that is controlled and administered from another machine using a standard Web browser.

"The PowerPC platform is very well-suited to this type of multimedia application, and the G4 with AltiVec used in the Mac mini is an exceptionally powerful and flexible choice. This first article introduces you to the hardware's capabilities and walks you through installing and configuring Yellow Dog Linux so you can delve into some application code in the next article."

Tech Trends

Hitachi Boosts Notebook Drive Performance to Desktop Replacement Level

PR: Hitachi Global Storage Technologies has set a new notebook performance record, announcing today worldwide availability of the fastest 2.5" hard drive for mobile applications. The 7200 RPM Travelstar 7K100 is first to market with desktop-class performance on a 2.5" hard drive for notebook systems such as Dell's Inspiron XPS Gen 2 system.

With 100 gigabytes(2) of storage capacity, the Travelstar 7K100 is bigger, faster, and stronger than its award-winning predecessor, creating an industrial-strength notebook hard drive. Hitachi's second-generation 7200 RPM 2.5" product offers a 67% storage-capacity increase and a 33% performance improvement (sustained data transfer rate) over the previous generation. In addition, a 50% improvement in operating shock tolerance gives users greater system reliability and data integrity. Within its class, the 7K100 features industry-leading 300 Gs and 1000 Gs operating and nonoperating shock specifications, respectively.

"Hitachi created the 7200 RPM notebook hard drive segment in 2003 to give mobile users a performance rush; based on strong demand, we are now bringing an even more powerful product to the market," said Bill Healy, senior vice president, product strategy and marketing, Hitachi Global Storage Technologies. "We've learned much about the 7200 RPM notebook hard drives over the past several years and have applied that experience to create the quintessential performance product."

Users of notebook systems that employ the Travelstar 7K100 as the leading-edge storage component will experience a marked performance improvement in a variety of computing activities: Windows XP startup, application loading, copying files and general HDD usage (playing an MP3 file, viewing pictures, browsing the Internet, etc.). Hitachi's benchmark testing of the 7K100 during these activities shows a 25% faster performance over the fastest competitive 2.5" 5400 RPM drive on the market (comparisons were made to 5400 RPM drives as no competitive 7200 RPM 2.5" drives were available for testing at time of announcement).

The heightened level of performance, higher capacity and ruggedness on the 7K100 are intended to give greater mobility to power users who have traditionally looked to desktop systems for premium functionality. These include PC gamers, graphic arts designers, digital video editors, computer-aided-design engineers, as well as general users who demand the latest and best that notebook technology has to offer.

The Travelstar 7K100 significantly outperforms competitive notebook hard drives as well as some 3.5" desktop drives. In fact, Hitachi benchmark testings have shown as much as a 7-percent faster performance rate when compared against 7200 RPM desktop drives with a 2-megabyte cache.

"The leadership attributes that define the Travelstar 7K100 are indicative of the deep R&D resources we apply to our entire 2.5" hard drive product line," Healy added.

As the architect for the performance-focused 7200 RPM 2.5" hard drive segment, Hitachi has been working to grow the market and seed acceptance among users. Since mid-2003 when the category was launched, Hitachi has seen a notable shift toward higher-performing notebook systems due to a growing sophistication in the user base and to the aggressive movement to wireless computing. In response, Hitachi is actively planning to support this growth trend and expects to significantly expand its production of 7200 RPM 2.5" drives by the end of 2005.

"Notebook computer manufacturers are sensitive to the growing demand for more disk drive performance and capacity, and the Hitachi 7K100 responds to that demand," said John Donovan, vice president, TrendFOCUS. "While the 7200 RPM segment for notebooks is still a relatively small one, Hitachi's continued technology advancements will do much to accelerate the growth of this category."

To provide a broader set of options for customers, Hitachi has increased the number of capacity points in its 7200 RPM offering to 60, 80 and 100 GB. The Travelstar 7K100 PATA model is now shipping to customers worldwide in all capacities. Hitachi will also deliver a SATA version with 1.5 Gbits/second interface transfer rate in July. In addition, an enhanced availability (E7K100) model, offering 24x7 availability for blade server applications, will follow later this summer. All Travelstar 7K100 models are ROHS compliant.

Could be perfect for the Mac mini!

Hitachi, Fujitsu Tout 100 GB Notebook Drives

IDG News Service's Martyn Williams reports:

"Hitachi Global Storage Technologies and Fujitsu have both begun shipping new notebook hard drives that offer more storage capacity and better performance over previous models, they said this week.

"Both drives, Hitachi's Travelstar 7K100 series and Fujitsu's MHV2100BH, are 2.5-inch types and are available with a maximum capacity of 100GB."

New Products

USB 2.0 Mini Drive Kit Matches Mac mini, Accepts Standard 3.5" Hard Drive

PR: ADS Tech has announced a new Mini Drive Kit, the latest addition to its line of USB products. The Mini Drive Kit is a plug-and-play device that enables Mac and Windows PC users to quickly and easily increase their storage capacity by turning the hard drive that best meets their needs into a portable USB 2.0 drive. Gigabytes of removable storage can be added by simply plugging an IDE Ultra DMA 33/66 or ATA-100/133 hard disk drive into the ADS Tech Native Bridge Board inside the drive kit's enclosure.

Designed with the same sleek look and feel of the new Mac mini, the stackable ADS Tech's Mini Drive Kit also offers the same small form factor as the Mac mini - it is just 6.5" square and less than 2" high.

When plugged into the USB 2.0 or USB 1.1 port of a computer, the Mini Drive Kit is instantly recognized; there's no need to configure the drive or reboot the system.

With a cost-effective solution for adding Gigabytes of removable storage to their new minicomputer or laptop without opening the computer case, consumers, students and business people can expand the capabilities of their Macs and PCs to achieve new levels of convenience and productivity.

  • Users can get started by transferring files from their desktop system to the drive kit and plugging it into their new minicomputer or laptop.
  • Consumers can turn their minicomputer into a digital entertainment hub that looks attractive in their living room and takes up very little space.
  • Business users can share data by plugging the drive kit into the USB port of a co-worker's computer.
  • Content developers can edit video on location because the Mini Drive Kit supports sustained transfer rates up to 35 MB/Sec. Since digital video only requires 3.9 MB/sec., there's plenty of speed remaining for other tasks.
  • Students can store and transfer volumes of data between their home computer and the computer they use at school.

All of these users, including mobile users, can use ADS Tech's Simple Touch(TM) Backup Button on the front of the drive kit to backup entire folders or selected files with a single click. By using the Intech utilities for PCs and Macs that is included with the drive kit, automatic backups can be scheduled.

ADS Tech's versatile USB 2.0 Mini Drive Kit is externally powered with a power supply that provides both 5 and 12 volts to the drive. A lighted rear power toggle switch and a hard drive activity light are included to help users quickly determine drive access. For security, the Mini Drive Kit offers advanced micro-slot protection (to keep the drive from "walking away") and compatibility with both Anchor Pad and Kensington Locks.

ADS Tech's new USB 2.0 Mini Drive Kit can be used with Windows 98SE, Me, 2000, and XP systems as well as Mac OS X systems. A Windows 2000 or XP system with USB 2.0 drivers from Microsoft is required for USB 2.0 speeds. The Mini Drive Kit will be available through ADS Tech's network of online and retail channels worldwide with estimated street price of US$59. It includes the USB 2.0 Drive Enclosure, a 9" USB white cable and a 5" USB white cable, a 5-Volt/12-volt Power Supply and a CD with Intech's Utilities for PC and Mac systems.

MCE 8x DVD±R/RW Dual Layer SuperDrive Upgrade for Mac mini

PR: The new MCE 8x DVD±R/RW SuperDrive upgrade with Double Layer Support for the Mac mini allows users to author professional-quality DVDs as well as create, store, and share their collections of videos, music and photography. Plus, the discs produced by this fast, highly reliable drive are compatible with most computer and set-top DVD video players and other DVD burners - so video and data DVDs created using this drive can be shared with business associates, friends, and family quickly and easily.

Are you looking to share your inspired video creations with others, but you don't have a DVD burner on your Mac mini? Look no further... MCE Technologies has made its highest performing slot-loading CD and DVD burning drive available for the Mac mini. Replacing your computer's original optical drive, the MCE slot-loading drive allows you to watch DVD movies, play audio CDs, as well as burn blank CDs and blank DVDs at the highest speeds possible. Compatible with iTunes and recording at 24x to both CD-R and CD-RW media and at 8x to both DVD-R and DVD+R media the MCE 8x Internal SuperDrive upgrade has true Double Layer support, which means you now have the ability to record up to 8.5GB of data on a single side of a Double Layer DVD.

The additional storage capacity of the DVD+R Double Layer disc enables you to record up to 4 hours of DVD-quality video or 16 hours of VHS-quality video, without the need to turn over the disc. You can now archive up to 8.5GB of computer files on a single disc, which almost doubles the storage capacity compared with the 4.7GB for the single-layer DVD-recordable discs currently available.

You may have the MCE 8x SuperDrive Upgrade for Mac mini professionally installed into your computer by MCE Technologies or one of our worldwide Authorized Upgrade Centers, or if you prefer, you may install it yourself (which is priced higher, but you get to keep your original internal optical drive).

Features

  • 8x DVD-R and DVD+R recorder
  • 4x DVD-RW and DVD+RW recorder
  • 2.4x DVD+R Double Layer recorder
  • Convenient slot-loading mechanism
  • 2MB Cache Buffer
  • Buffer underrun protection
  • Bootable
  • Compatible with iTunes, iDVD, iPhoto and Disc Burner

The Double Layer DVD+R system uses two thin embedded organic dye films for data storage separated by a spacer layer (see figure). Heating with a focused laser beam irreversibly modifies the physical and chemical structure of each layer such that the modified areas have different optical properties to those of their unmodified surroundings. This causes a variation in reflectivity as the disc rotates to provide a read-out signal as with commercially pressed read-only discs. Did you get all that?? It just means that there are two recording layers inside the DVD instead of just one . . . two layers means twice the recording capacity! Now wasn't that easier?

Not every disc is created equal. The MCE 8x SuperDrive Upgrade implements an on-board liquid crystal tilt/thickness compensator... the first time ever in a portable form factor. This cutting edge technology provides accurate, reliable read and write performance with a variety of disc characteristics, even with irregularly curved or thick/thin media. This technology is also effective in recording DVD+R double layer media.

Specifications

  • Read Support: DVD DVD-ROM, DVD-VIDEO, DVD-R, DVD-RW, DVD+R, DVD+RW & DVD+R DL*2, CD CD-ROM(Mode 1&2), CD-ROM XA, CD-DA, Video CD, PhotoCD, CD EXTRA, CD-Text, CD-R, CD-RW
  • Write Speed
    • DVD-R 8x
    • DVD-RW 4x
    • DVD+R 8x
    • DVD+RW 4x
    • DVD+R DL*2 2.4x
    • CD-R 24x
    • CD-RW 24x
  • Read Speed
    • DVD Max 8x CAV
    • CD-ROM Max 24x CAV
  • Data Buffer (size): 2 MBytes
  • Dimensions (W x H x D): 128mm x 12.7mm x 129mm
  • Weight: 200g

Supported Media:

  • DVD-R (Version 2.0 for General), 4x-Speed DVD-R, 8x-Speed DVD-R
  • DVD-RW (Version 1.0, 1.1, 1.2), 2X-Speed DVD-RW, 4x-Speed DVD-RW
  • DVD+R, 4x-Speed DVD+R, 8x-Speed DVD+R,
  • DVD+RW,4x-Speed DVD+RW
  • DVD+R DL
  • CD-R, Multi-Speed CD-RW, High-Speed CD-RW, Ultra-Speed CD-RW
  • DVD-RAM and Ultra-Speed + CD-RW are not supported.

The MCE 8x Internal SuperDrive Upgrade with Double Layer support is compatible with all versions of Mac OS X, including Tiger, and is seamlessly compatible with Apple's iApps including iTunes, iDVD, and iPhoto. In addition, it is compatible with Finder Burning and DVD Studio Pro, Apple's professional DVD Authoring software.

Once installed, a quick check of Apple System Profiler indicates that the MCE 8x Internal SuperDrive upgrade with Double Layer support is already supported natively by the Mac OS. No third-party drivers to download and hassle with. This native Mac OS support is your guarantee that your MCE 8x drive is 100% compatible with all current and future Mac OS updates and versions.

Now you can record up to 4 hours instead of 2 hours of the highest quality DVD video on a single disc. Or store 8.5 gigabytes, equaling about 12 fully recorded CD-Rs, instead of just 4.7 gigabytes, on a single-sided DVD. Double Layer recording technology built into the MCE 8x Internal SuperDrive upgrade makes it possible.

30 Day Money Back Guarantee

System Requirements: Mac mini running Mac OS 10.3 (or later)

Self Installation or MCE Installation Starting Below $149.

Belkin's New USB and FireWire Hubs Designed to Match Mac mini

PR: Belkin Corporation announces new USB and FireWire hubs that offer additional ports and that are specifically engineered to stack on top of or below the Mac mini - helping to save valuable desktop space. The Hi-Speed USB 2.0 4-Port Hub and Hi-Speed USB 2.0 and FireWire 6-Port Hub for Mac mini feature front ports that give easy access to USB devices such as thumb drives and the iPod shuffle. Both Hubs will begin shipping in North America on July 15, 2005.

Belkin hubThis hub allows you to connect up to four high-speed devices to your Mac mini. Two USB 2.0 ports located on the front of the Hub provide fast and easy connectivity for USB thumb drives, media readers, digital cameras, and small accessories such as the Apple(R) iPod and iPod shuffle.

Benefits

  • Adds four 480Mbps downstream ports
  • Works with Hi-Speed USB 2.0 and USB 1.1 (low- and full-speed) devices
  • Offers compatibility with iPod(R), iPod shuffle, printers, digital cameras, and thousands of other USB devices

Ideal for the iPod, iPod shuffle, Mac mini, and other USB devices, this Hub features a total of two FireWire ports and four USB 2.0 ports. A single USB and a FireWire port are located on the front of the Hub to give you easy access to USB thumb drives, media readers, and small accessories such as the Apple iPod and iPod shuffle.

Benefits

  • Provides a low-profile, space-saving platform for stacking your Mac mini
  • Combines FireWire and USB technologies in one easy installation

Hi-Speed USB 2.0 and FireWire 6-Port Hub for Mac mini - $49.95

MiniView Micro USB Plus KVM Switch

PR: Introducing the two port MiniView Micro USB Plus KVM switch from IOGear - the simplest way to simultaneously run and share audio among two computers with a single USB keyboard, monitor, and USB mouse.

This self-powered KVM switch features the unique USB sniffing technology for USB mouse and keyboard emulation to ensure smooth operation, as well as support for Plug-n-Play monitors and most wheel mice. Our patented VSE Video Signal Enhancement® technology provides rich, 32-bit color at resolutions up to 2048 x 1536.

MiniView Micro USB Plus KVM SwitchAnother big plus is the MiniView's capability to provide audio support, it allows you to share your multimedia speakers among the two connected computers.

This switch also offers multi-platform support; it's compatible with Windows and Mac computers as well as Sun Solaris workstations. IOGear delivered a huge breakthrough in KVM operation to Mac and Sun users by enabling functionality for the special keys on these systems. When using a PC keyboard, a special set of hot keys are designed to emulate the special keys on Mac and Sun machines.

With 6' long KVM cables molded into the MiniView Micro USB Plus, all you need to do is to plug it into your computers and you've got a complete KVM solution from IOGear.

Features

  • Use one USB keyboard, monitor and USB mouse to control two USB computers
  • 6' long molded-in cables to simplify setup
  • Share your multimedia speakers among the two connected computers
  • Full support for Mac and Sun systems
  • Supports special keys on Mac and Sun keyboards
  • Port selection through convenient Hot Keys
  • USB sniffing technology allows complete USB mouse and keyboard emulation for error-free boot-up
  • Plug-n-Play monitor support
  • Support video resolutions up to 2048 x 1536
  • No software required
  • Built in AutoScan mode
  • LEDs allow for easy status monitoring
  • 3 Year Limited Warranty

System requirements:

  • Computers with a USB connection and HDDB15 VGA connection
  • Windows 98, 98SE, ME, 2000, XP
  • Mac OS 8.6 or greater
  • Sun Solaris work station
  • Linux, UNIX and other USB supported systems
  • Additional drivers and support may be needed
  • Audio: Only support 2-piece, powered speakers systems

KMremoteControl

PR: If you have more than one PC/Windows and/orMac OS X computers on your desk, complete with monitors, and ...

  • you'd like to always use your preferred keyboard and mouse (regardless of whether it's PC or Mac)
  • you'd like more usable space on your desk
  • you're tired of constantly shuffling back and forth between Mac PC systems
  • your systems all have monitors and you can see all the monitors

... then KMremoteControl is for you!

Think about it . . . LCD monitors have become real inexpensive . . . so why waste time futzing with a KVM switch? Just get another monitor and use KMremoteControl . . . much more useful.

KMremoteControl delivers the following benefits:

  • lets you use your preferred keyboard and mouse
    • increases your comfort (may reduce repetitive stress injuries)
      ° increases your productivity
  • lets you recover the space used by multiple keyboards, mice and mousepads
  • saves you money . . . no need to buy that KVM switch
  • keeps you mobile . . . no need to lug around that KVM switch
  • lets you use your preferred seating position and location
    • use the location that provides the best lighting
    • stop shuffling back and forth . . . save your carpet!
  • when used in conjunction with ClipCommControl :
    • automatically transfers the clipboard when controlling Mac OS X systems
    • especially useful for laptop users

KMremoteControl has the following features and capabilities:

  • use the keyboard and mouse on one PC/Windows or Mac OS X system to "remote control" other PC/Windows and/or Mac OS X systems
    • use the keyboard/mouse on a PC to control other PCs and/or Macs
    • use the keyboard/mouse on a Mac to control other Macs and/or PCs
  • remote controlling another system is quickly activated/deactivated via a "hotkey"
    • you define the hotkey you prefer
    • the hotkey acts as a "toggle" to both activate, then deactivate the "remote controlling"
    • options can enable "activate and show"/"deactivate and hide" to keep KMremoteControl available, but out of the way when it's not in use
  • Mac remote controlling another system can be activated/deactivated via "edge-detection"
    • you define the physical arrangement of your systems
    • hitting the screen edge with the mouse pointer acts as a "toggle" to both activate, then deactivate the "remote controlling" (won't de-activate on PC)
  • provides platform-based authentication
    • you configure whether a system requires authentication to be remotely controlled (required by default)
    • uses the normal Windows and OS X login mechanisms
    • requires no additional user-account setup/maintenance
    • encrypts your login password before sending over the network (a later release will support secure/SSL communications)
  • Mac secure communications, via SSL, can be used for all communications (Mac-to-Mac)
  • helps you authenticate on the system being controlled
    • during a session, remembers the login and password so multiple activations with the same controlled system are "painless" and quicker
    • when using a Mac OS X platform to remote control, uses the Keychain to store and supply passwords for all your controlled systems
  • has a similar interface on both PC/Windows and Mac OS X
    • uses each platforms standard user-interface elements
    • increases the ease of use
    • setup and operation is easy and operation is capable but understandable
    • follow the simple installation and setup instructions in the ReadMe
    • no need to learn a bunch of terms like server, client, and host
    • systems can be remote controlled after restarts
  • the networking port number can be changed to avoid conflicts
  • ° some other networking attributes are also adjustable
  • Mac supports the use of "hotkeys" (e.g., application switcher keys) on the system being controlled (note that this is always supported without any extra capabilities on a PCPC/Windows system)
  • Mac supports single-button mouse operation when controlling a PCPC/Windows system by allowing a right-mouse to be sent instead of a control-click
  • Mac KMremoteControl's windows can be made transparent when controlling or the controlling system's screen can be blackened when controlling
  • Mac when used in conjunction with ClipCommControl, will automatically synchronize clipboards when operating between Mac OS X systems

And don't worry . . . although KMremoteControl needs your system to be connected to a network, we'll take care of the rest:

  • you don't need to understand concepts like "servers" and "clients" and "hosts" . . . oh my! (we don't use these terms)
  • you don't have to be a "geek" to get it working (but, of course, fellow "geeks" will also find it easy)

System requirements:
KMremoteControl supports both PC/Windows and Mac OS X, including cross-platform operation.

KMremoteControl runs on Windows 2000/XP and MacOS X 10.2.x/10.3.x

  • use the keyboard/mouse on a PC to control other PCs and/or Macs
  • use the keyboard/mouse on a Mac to control other Macs and/or PCs

KMremoteControl licenses are also cross-platform

  • the same license works on either PC/Windows or Mac OS X platforms
  • licenses can easily be moved from one system to another (uses our LicenseControl capability)

KMremoteControl requires that the computer systems be connected to a network.

Mac Integration with ClipCommControl product is currently only supported for Macintosh OS X systems.

New Pooch v1.6 Taps Tiger, Grid, and Web

PR: Dauger Research, Inc., releases version 1.6 of Pooch (Parallel OperatiOn and Control Heuristic application) and Pooch Pro clustering software today. Leveraging new technologies introduced with "Tiger", Apple's newest Mac OS X, the Pooch family introduces new enhancements, including "playlist"-like node lists and network tools, enriching the user experience of supercomputer-compatible cluster computing. Long recognized as a leader in cluster solution providers, Dauger Research delivers an unmatched combination of powerful tools to manage and maintain cluster resources, maximizing the power of clusters for its users.

"While carrying the Macintosh philosophy to supercomputer-compatible cluster computing, we accomplish many 'first's to adopt the latest in desktop technology, such as Bonjour, AppleScript, and drag-and-drop, to make clusters as easy-to-use as possible for users. Leading 'ad hoc' clustering, we continue that spirit with the new Pooch and Pooch Pro.", said Dr. Dean Dauger, President of Dauger Research, Inc. "The Pooch family provides the easiest and most reliable path to parallel computing; we've just made it even better."

The Pooch family leads the way making grid and cluster computing easy-to-use and reliable. A new web interface to Pooch increases the ways users can utilize clustering, making it even easier for users on other platforms to utilize a Mac cluster. As enhancements to its network scan tool, the new Pooch introduces user-defined node lists, much like iTunes' "playlists", in its new Network pane, allowing the user to switch between subnets of the Internet as well as define arbitrary groups of computing nodes for the user's convenience and benefit. Users can access multiple networks of nodes in the new Network view and evaluate queued, running, and terminated jobs through Pooch's native interface or via AppleScript. Pooch's Job window features a new Grid job type, making distributed launching of many single-processor executables as easy as point and click. Independent executables not designed for parallel computing can therefore utilize a cluster through Pooch's GUI.

Pooch leverages four major Tiger technologies: Pooch includes a new Automator action that enables workflows to initiate cluster activity. A new Dashboard widget, shipping with Pooch, reports the status of and the past, present, and future job activity on the cluster in an aesthetically pleasing environment. Spotlight can search Pooch's job data with a new plug-in. Finally, Pooch makes Xgrid nodes accessible to users through Pooch's award-winning interface.

These features build on the Pooch family's recognized lead over other cluster solutions. Pooch and Pooch Pro can have multiprocessor Macs behave like multiple "virtual nodes". They can can utilize logged-out machines for parallel computing with preexisting resources. Pooch supports all execution environments available on current Apple hardware and supports five distinct implementations of the Message-Passing Interface (MPI). Pooch Pro provides the only easy-to-use GUI-based resource management mechanism, securely encrypting user data about CPU time, job limits, and even rollover minutes, another feature unique to Pooch Pro in the cluster world.

Dauger Research, Inc., introduced eight tutorials, three recently, on the Pooch website, extensively describing how to develop parallel applications and algorithms. Users can access tutorials outlining the different types of parallel computing, detailed MPI information, and descriptions, with example code in Fortran and C, of the basics of writing parallel code. Website visitors can download GUI and command-line installers containing a trial Pooch, sample parallel applications and source code, a Pooch Software Development Kit, and full documentation. Dauger Research makes it easier than ever to write, develop, and run your parallel code today.

Pooch and Pooch Pro v1.6 are available today. Updates are shipping to Pooch users whose subscriptions are active.

Pooch v1.6 is available for US$175 for the first compute node then US$125 for each node thereafter. Pooch Pro v1.6 is available for US$200 for the first compute node then US$150 for each node thereafter. See the web site for special academic pricing. Users may order Pooch and other software using the forms on our web site or online through the Dauger Research Store.

Pooch requires networked Macintoshes and/or Xserves running Mac OS 9 with CarbonLib 1.2 or later, Mac OS X 10.2 or later, and/or Mac OS X Server 10.2 or later with 4 MB of available RAM and 2 MB of disk space. Pooch Pro requires Mac OS X 10.2 or later, and/or Mac OS X Server 10.2 or later.

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