Random Things

Friday, 2005-01-28; 01:50:00

So, to dispel the rumors that you need free space on at least 10% of your startup disk while running Mac OS X, I present to you this screenshot. You can clearly see that "HAL 9000" is my startup disk (since it appears in the very upper right corner of my desktop), that it has 0 KB left, that iTunes is also telling me that my startup disk is completely full, and finally that Mac OS X is running perfectly fine. (Don't ask me why I had no space on my startup disk. :P )

Mac OS X does throw up a warning when you only have like 250 or 500 MB left on your startup disk, but it seems that Mac OS X is completely capable of running solely on RAM. (Of course, that's not entirely true, because it usually reserves space on your hard disk ahead of time for virtual memory -- or, as most technophiles running Mac OS X call them, swap files.)

So, yeah. You can safely ignore any "troubleshooting tips" that recommend you have a certain amount of free space on your hard disk. (Apparently, though, this is limited to Panther. Supposedly, Jaguar automatically logs you out when you get down to 250 MB left on your startup disk.)

("By the way, when I'm playing Scategories and I roll an 'S' and the category is 'former Afghan presidents', I always go with sih-guh-buh-too-lah... moh-gih-dee-dee.")


The Macs on campus at Stanford are capable of using the 50 MB of web space that you are given as a student as your networked Mac OS X home folder. When you login to a campus Mac, you put in your SUNet ID and password, and then the computer automatically mounts your webspace and uses it as your home folder. Very slick.

But why can't they do the same thing on the PCs? I have to use a bunch of PCs for my geostatistics class. Assuming you don't have access to the computer you worked on before, you have to use a little program to mount that computer's hard drive on a computer that IS available, and then copy the files you want over to the new computer. Lame.

So I'm wondering. Is this something that Windows cannot fundamentally do? It's so convenient for the Macs, that I can't imagine why they wouldn't do it for the PCs. (Of course, this might be limited to the geostatistics PCs, 'cause I haven't really noticed if computer cluster PCs work like campus Macs.) Also, if there's a problem with both Macs and PCs accessing the same folder, I don't see any technical reason why they couldn't just have two separate mount points -- one for the Mac, and one for the PC.

Of course, I'm not naive enough to realize that it might be just that Stanford hasn't invested the time into implementing it, since most of the campus runs on Macs (thankfully). But then again, Stanford does have a ton of money up its sleeve, so you'd think they'd implement this.

Just a thought.


So, um, I got an iSight. It's disconcerting and I only know a few people who are capable of video-conferencing (one-way video chat notwithstanding). It's mainly for testing purposes with my dad, since he's setting up video-conferencing for a business and he's testing out Apple's software. Supposedly, though, I'll be able to keep the iSight.

Not that I *really* care in the end. I mean, it's cool.. but I doubt I'll use it that much.

Oh, and no I won't post any pictures of me, thank you very much.


Check out my new weekly article at Apple-X: I've written two so far, the inaugural article, and the first real article in the Q&A help desk series.


By the way, if you haven't seen it yet, take a look at this. Very, VERY cool. And that music is so totally appropriate. (1. That's a lot of applause at the end. 2. We still have that virtually unchanged crappy voice synthesis on Mac OS X. :P )

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