Help me figure out this here iBook

I’ve been tapped at work to become the Mac guy (I was the only one willing to take on the task)

They sent me home for the weekend with a G4 iBook and I guess next week they’re putting an Apple workstation at my desk.

So far I’ve got it unwired to my network, surfed the web, played with settings, added/removed stuff from the dashboard, drilled around in console (acts like *nix), found the network utillities, and played some game where you drive a marble around.

It seems pretty straight forward.

So what else can I fiddle with to get to know this OS better?

(Sadly I can’t trash this OS and try to fix it. I have to give this laptop back to the development team in working order monday. When I get the desktop I’ll get a chance to destroy it and beat it up… but for now I have to be nice)

Assuming you’re running OSX (10. something…) and without knowing what sort of work the mac will eventually be used for or what your experience in using Macs is:

Try downloading something from the internet - music or a video - saving it to your desktop and watching/listening to it.

Open each application in the ‘Applications’ folder and see what they all do.
Maybe type and save a word document in textedit?

Grab some nifty widgets from apple’s website and play in the Dashboard some more. Widgets are neat.

I’m listing simple things because I don’t know what you’re looking to find out.

Are any other programs installed on the machine? What sort of things are you hoping to accomplish?

Mostly the company I work for is wanting me to become the guy to ask about all things Apple. So far it seems pretty straight forward - slightly clunky, but easy enough. And yes, OSX.

I’m kind of looking for tips/tricks from Apple users. On Windows machines there are about 3-4 ways to get from one point to another. The novice route is several clicks through the main start menu. Once you know your way around you find shortcuts using the “right click” menus which can cut your navigation time by 80%. I’m kind of hoping to find those shortcuts on the Mac.

I wish I could break things on this computer to go about fixing them. That’s really where you learn about an OS.

I gotta say this laptop is kind of a pig. My old Micron PII running Windows 98 was faster at opening and running software than this G4. Perhaps OSX is a lot to ask from this hardware (I don’t know where the limitations sit with Apple hardware vs software). Its all good though. It’s kind of fun to play with.

The console acts like *nix because it is. (It’s a FreeBSD variant, to be precise.) You might want to check out the Fink project, which contains a ports repository for all sorts of fun Unix apps that you can install on your OSX machine.

a big Mac geek thing is learning keyboard shortcuts. Command (“open-Apple”) has the same function as ctrl in Windows, so command-w = closes window. Option + command-w = close all windows in Finder. Command-s = save document, etc.

Holding down option and/or command and scrolling through menus often brings up other options.

The Finder is customizable. You can move the Dock to different spots, change the animation, make icons bounce, etc. Windows users really dig the “genie effect” when you hide away a window…

This page has a list of keyboard shortcuts if you want to learn them…

There’s also

You should also bookmark this site:

And for someone new to the OS, this book might be handy:
Mac OS X: The Missing Manual, Tiger Ed
By David Pogue

I have another question about iBooks. I have a blue. iBook in the old G3 Imac style. The screen is cracked. If I can find a screen on Ebay, should I be able to put the two together easily ? Also, if I do, am I going to be able to get anything done with it for the next year at least? I think it has OSX 10.2 and maybe Linux.

I think the big thing you will need to do is learn the conversions/tricks between PCs and Macs. At least that is my experience.

So, I suggest you first take a look at your PC world. What apps/functions are commonly performed there? What might a user on a Mac need to do? Can you set up a printer (print utility, use the IP printing)? Exchange (friends don’t let friends use exchange, but that seems to be a minority view)? Email? etc. Lots of outside the box things that need to be done-Macs can seemlessly handle about 80% of them. But that means no one can get through their day without dealing with a problem-hence your new job.

Download Eudora and set up an account.
Connect to a PC network. (you will be shocked, I was, at the arcane settings that MS defaults and the rest of the world doesn’t).
Install a printer. Learn the difference between IP printing (NIX printing) and Postscript printing.
Figure out how to establish internet access using acompany router/DHCP and perhaps a proxie.
Set up a VPN (good luck! can be done, but it seems hard to me).

Well, that depends on your experience with laptop repair. Laptop disassembly and repair is a pain in the ass, mostly because of all the small screws and parts that have to be reassembled just so or the whole thing won’t fit together. You should check out the Fixit Guides from before deciding whether you want to do it yourself.