iDisk Uploading, MacBook Experience

Saturday, 2006-08-26; 04:16:00

So the other day I wanted to receive a rather large file from someone. E-mail wouldn't work, because the attachment would be too large. He was also on Windows, and even though I can activate Windows file-sharing on my iMac, I wasn't exactly sure how to get him to connect directly to my machine. (From what I remember, you just type something like "\\your.ip.address\username" into the address bar of a Windows Explorer window, but that didn't seem to work.) I got him to download the Windows version of the iDisk Utility but for some reason it wouldn't install. Options were running out.

Then, on a whim, I did a search on Google, and ended up finding this. Whoa.

This relatively recent feature is a great addition to the features of .mac's iDisk. It's basically a web interface to your iDisk. I recall there being one before, but it was pretty crappy and -- I think -- only allowed access to your Public folder. Better yet, it allows anyone to upload to your iDisk's public folder with just a web browser. Yes, you can password protect your public folder if you don't want people uploading with a click of a radio button in the .mac preference pane (under the iDisk tab).

It's a simple but sweet feature. The only two things I found at fault were 1) if you don't realize you have password protection on, it requests a password AFTER you finish uploading the file, and 2) there's no progress bar for the upload. But besides those two minor problems which are easily worked around, this web interface is a good way to transfer large files.

To access your whole iDisk yourself, just go to , and enter your username and password in the authentication dialog. Everybody else who wants to access the Public folder of your iDisk can go to . To upload, all they have to do is click the Upload button in the upper-right hand corner of the window, browse for the file they want to upload, and then click the Upload button.

My iMac G5 is now relegated to third-best computer in the household, behind my bro's MacBook Pro and my mom's new MacBook. She is upgrading from an iBook G3 600 MHz, which, needless to say, is going to be like night and day (jumping 3 processor architectures!). I've used it a bit, and I think it's pretty sweet.

It was also the first time I was able to see the Migration Assistant in action. It really is as simple as connecting a FireWire cord between the two computers. The assistant walks you through step by step, and also reminds you to plug in battery power so that the transfer isn't interrupted. It worked really well with only one hiccup: the AirPort connection never automatically re-established itself after a fast-user switch or a sleep. But that was easy to remedy: delete the current network location, and then re-create it from scratch.

Contrary to all the reports on the web (not that they're false or anything), this MacBook runs pretty quietly. I don't hear any of the "mooing" or "whining" sounds that everybody was talking about on the web, only the standard high-pitched noise from the hard drive that you hear in every computer. Occasionally I could hear the fans -- and they can get quite loud, which was evident when performing the MacBook's firmware update with the fans blowing at full speed -- but for the most part they didn't turn on.

An iPod nano (4 GB) has also joined the family. But that's not really anything notable, because it's pretty much like my iPod video except smaller in size and capacity and lacking video capabilities.

(In other news, it seems that D2X-XL doesn't run natively on Intel-Macs. It's compiled as a universal binary, but it just crashes when you try to launch it. Running it under Rosetta works, with surprisingly good performance. Wonder what's up.)

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