Published on February 16, 2005 By averjoe In Personal Computing
I read about the new mini Mac that cost 499.00 US. It comes without a monitor (which could add considerably to the cost), keyboard and mouse. I must admit it re-ignited my interest in the Mac.

I know how to use a Mac (if the jaguar GUI operates the same as earlier versions of Mac operating systems) and took a computer course in college where the computer science/ computer-programming department preferred the Mac.

The various labs on the various campuses however had PCs that had a version of the Microsoft operating system on them. There were a few computer terminals (not as many as the Macs) that hooked into a BSD Unix system for those that preferred a Unix or Linux system (the campus email system was on a Unix system).

At that time the professors of the computer department felt that the Mac operating system was easier to learn and use (this is less the case since Windows XP).

There were fewer Macs not because of the fact that (even then) more people used a PC with Microsoft 95, 98 or Me but because of the price of a Mac when compared with a PC.

A Mac system when compared to a similar type of PC was much more expensive and this is still the case. So, as much as the professors desired Macs the PC became the dominant type of computer on campus just as it was in most offices and peoples’ homes.

The people at Apple, the ones who introduced the GUI to the masses fell behind in sales and dominance of the computer market by holding tight to their proprietary rights and licenses which kept Mac prices relatively high.

Mac prices have stayed near 1990s computer prices. A good computer back then averaged over a thousand dollars (if brought at a store--- people who made their own were lucky). For a top of the line Mac you can by two better (in terms of computing power) PCs now.

I can take apart and put together a Mac just as well as a PC. Planar boards are planar boards no matter what type of computer it is. The proprietary designs of the parts of a Mac however will make it mighty costly to build one.

I think with the Mac for 499.00 I might be able to put together a system with a used monitor, keyboard and mouse for about 575.00. Now that sounds okay. I’ll have to think about it but the price looks right.

Lots Of Spies: I repaired a Dell laptop of a co-worker the other day. Believe me, it was no easy job. The operating system was in such bad shape that I highly recommended that he reinstall the operating system, which was Windows XP Professional. There were some anomalies that I could not figure out even after I got the thing back up and running.

The Ad-Aware SE program I used discovered almost two thousand of what it considered critical spyware objects on his computer, which is amazing.

The antivirus program he used had expired in October of 2004 and his firewall was not up and protecting his system.

He had visited and downloaded over 1500 porn jpeg images and movies and I can’t help but think that this fact partially explained all the spyware and adware on his system.

Ad-Aware SE could not delete all of this spyware at once. I had to customize the type of spyware the program should look for and deleted the malware in increments.

I replaced his expired Norton antivirus program with another Norton antivirus program which I informed him would not be usable if he installs Service Pack 2 for Windows XP.

I disabled a few services that are clear security risk. There were other Windows XP services that I thought should be turned off but I didn’t because he might want to use something that was dependent on those services so I didn’t make his computer as secure as I could.

I did inform him to keep Microsoft’s built-in firewall on when online. It gives some protection.

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