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Tristrami May 15, 2001 11:16 AM
Older Mac for Email only
Okay older Mac true-believers,

I am looking for input and advice. I have a collegue who asked me to set up a Mac for her mother (who is 80) so that she can write & send e-mail. I have a wide range of Mac computers in my possession that I'm not using, and I was just going to give her one. My questions are: Which computer is best for her limited needs and how would I set it up software-wise (looking for email software recommendations..)? Here are the choices:

Mac Classic
Mac IIfx
Centris 610
Quadra 700
Performa 6216

Or, if there's another one on this list that's simply the best option, (& under $50), I would consider obtaining one of those. Please note that I would also want to attach a stylwriter II and have Wordperfect for letter-writing. Please advise!

PM 5400/G3 400
Performa 6116CD
thirtyfootsmurf May 15, 2001 11:32 AM
I had an old Centris (or Quadra) 660AV that worked really well...

An 810 might not be so bad either...

Now as for the software...
an old version of Eudora (or new) might be good...

off to class!
MacMonster May 15, 2001 12:15 PM
I think a Mac Classic is fast enough for text-only e-mail communication.

Suggestion: System 6.0.8 + MacTCP + PPP Extension + ConfigPPP + Eudora Light.
etphonehome May 15, 2001 05:21 PM
All of those computers should be adequate for simple email use. Therefore, you should probably give her the best one you're willing to give her. I use Earthlink on a number of computers from an SE/30 to a G3 upgraded 6100, and the installer on the Earthlink CD-ROM installs everything you need except for modem drivers.

Another good software option for a beginner would be AOL, since AOL 3.0 will work on almost any Mac and it's good for beginners.
gumby5647 May 15, 2001 11:03 PM
ive been on these boards before with a Mac IIci......

25Mhz 030

AIM: gumby5647
iMac DV +, Indigo, 128MB, 20GB
Tristrami May 16, 2001 12:01 AM
Remember, there's no need for web-browsing. I just need a simple Mac email & wordprocessing machine.
jeromep May 16, 2001 12:32 AM
Eudora 3.x was the last version that worked well on 68k Macs. Claris Emailer 1 works fine on 68k and so should Claris Emailer 2. Eudora 4 should also work on 68k, but I wouldn't guarantee it. Eudora 5 claims that it is for PowerPC only.

Outlook is out of the question on 68k, even if you can find an older version. It is just way too slow on computers in the general class as a IIci.

I would not suggest using a Classic, but a Classic II would be ok. I would also stay away from the LCII. The quadra and Centris would provide the best experience and would be the most flexible should limited web browsing be needed at some point in the future.
gumby5647 May 16, 2001 07:20 PM
i don't know if you've been to this website...but it is exactly what you are looking for.

AIM: gumby5647
iMac DV +, Indigo, 128MB, 20GB
finboy May 17, 2001 01:42 PM
I think the Performa would be a good choice, but only with a built-in modem, since the port speeds are limited.

The Q700 would probably also be a good choice.

I'd use AOL 3.0 or 4.0 (if a quadra or PPC), and that should give everything she needs, plus it will be relatively stable.

Download the free WordPerfect and it should run like a charm.

Forget Outlook and see if you can find an old copy of Claris Emailer if you have to use a provider other than earthlink or AOL.

Good luck.

Shop smart, shop S-Mart! You got that!!?!!
Walter J. Ferstl May 20, 2001 07:42 AM

I would like to suggest the LC III.

For email, I am supporting the Eudora Light proposal (most recent is 3.1.3 for 68k).

For dialup, FreePPP seems the best to me (having the telephone icon in the menu bar is also pretty intuitive for the old lady, I think). FreePPP v2.6.2 teamed up with PPP menu 2.06 also offers the nice feature of showing an off-hook handset in the menu bar icon when a connection is open.

Open Transport is more stable than MacTCP, just replace Apple's OT/PPP with FreePPP).



Walter J. Ferstl May 20, 2001 07:47 AM

if you are interested, FreePPP can be downloaded at

It will also work fine on most of the other Macs on your list.

Other good hardware choices would be Centris 610, Quadra 700, and, a little bit less so, the Performa 6216.

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