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switch to mac?
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cjon
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Sep 19, 2005, 09:16 PM
 
I have a 5 year old PC and will soon be upgrading. I've been considering a Mac (specifically a Mac mini), but I had a couple of questions that maybe someone could help me with.

On one of my hard drives, I have large number of MP3's. How would I go about transferring these to a Mac? (If I were to get a new a PC, it wouldn't be hard to just install it as a second hard drive.) Copying all the files to CD's and having the new computer read them would be pretty laborious. With the Mac mini, is there any way to connect my old drive directly?

There's a couple of small programs (non CPU-intensive) I have that are only available for PC's. How hard is it to work with an emulator?

Are the files on CD's and DVD's burned by a Mac readable by PC's? Vice versa?

As you can see, I'm definitely not the most computer-literate person around. I would appreciate any info. Thanks in advance.
     
walkerjs
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Sep 19, 2005, 09:37 PM
 
Originally Posted by cjon
I have a 5 year old PC and will soon be upgrading. I've been considering a Mac (specifically a Mac mini), but I had a couple of questions that maybe someone could help me with.

On one of my hard drives, I have large number of MP3's. How would I go about transferring these to a Mac? (If I were to get a new a PC, it wouldn't be hard to just install it as a second hard drive.) Copying all the files to CD's and having the new computer read them would be pretty laborious. With the Mac mini, is there any way to connect my old drive directly?

There's a couple of small programs (non CPU-intensive) I have that are only available for PC's. How hard is it to work with an emulator?

Are the files on CD's and DVD's burned by a Mac readable by PC's? Vice versa?

As you can see, I'm definitely not the most computer-literate person around. I would appreciate any info. Thanks in advance.
When I switched from PC (Linux, actually) to my Mac I had the benefit of a network. 'Connect to server' the server being my old computer and access the shared drive to new Mac. Copy mp3 files to Music folder on mac. Same with the rest of the stuff I needed (pictures, documents, other stuff.) You merely need to set up sharing on the old PC to allow the Mac to access it. Or the other way around. Networks are getting pretty ubiquitous these days, and if you don't have one you should probably invest the small amount it takes to get one going. Even if it is wireless.

I haven't worked with Virtual PC, opting instead to set up one of my old laptops with Windows remote desktop and connect to it via RDC on the Mac. My palm desktop is just such a thing that I use this for. Once again, the network is my friend. I understand that Virtual PC works reasonably well with non CPU intensive applications, albeit at a resource hit for the Mac while the app is running.

CDs and DVDs are readable by Mac, PC, Linux, UNIX, whichever when created with my Mac. Same with the other way around. One kind of annoying thing I've found with CD's created on the Mac when I read them on my linux box the files are not readable by anyone other than the UID who created them, which on my Mac is different from the UID I have for a regular user on my Linux box. I have to su to root on the linux box to read them. This is kind of an advanced concept, however, and is not a problem when reading CDs burned on a Mac on a Windows computer. In other words, worry not about reading Mac burned CDs on a Windows machine.
     
gradient
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Sep 19, 2005, 09:38 PM
 
You won't have any issue networking your new Mac with your old PC to transfer any old data you'd like to backup, including your MP3's. Here is a good walk-through that I used myself recently when I couldn't remember how to do it: http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=54704

Virtual PC isn't all that cheap but does work fairly well for non-graphics intensive PC apps under OS X - I use it regularily for work and have had no major problems at all. If you're unsure about putting out the cash on VPC without knowing whether it'll work for you, there are always *ahem* "demo" versions you can download if you look around hard enough.

And finally, yes, as was posted abov, your Mac should be able to read any cds or dvds you've burned on your old PC as well.

In summation?? BUY A MAC!!!! You won't regret it!
     
B Gallagher
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Sep 19, 2005, 09:39 PM
 
Hey man,

How many mp3's do you have? Specifically, how many MB or GB? You don't need to burn them all onto CD or DVD. As long as you have both the PC and the Mac Mini together at the same time, you can network them up, and transfer everything over that way. Much faster and easier than burning a whole lot of CDs or DVDs. Chances are your PC will have an Ethernet/LAN port, but it doesn't hurt to double check. The Mac Minis all do.

What are the specs of your PC by the way? Just out of interest.

The best emulator out there is Microsoft's Virtual PC. It costs a few hundred dollars though. What are the programs you have which are only available for PC? What do they do? Chances are that there's a similar Mac program out there which will be able to do the same thing. Let us know what you're looking for.

Yes, as far as I know, Macs can read CDs and DVDs burnt on a PC. I'm not sure about the other way round, but I know if you use Roxio Toast it gives you an option to create a PC-readable CD.

Anything else, feel free to ask! Hope this helps you!
MBP 15" C2D 2.2GHz 4.0GB [email protected]
iPhone 4 32GB Black
     
Randman
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Sep 19, 2005, 09:47 PM
 
apple.com/switch


It has all the info and step-by-step guides for you.

This is a computer-generated message and needs no signature.
     
cjon  (op)
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Sep 19, 2005, 11:11 PM
 
Originally Posted by B Gallagher
Hey man,

How many mp3's do you have? Specifically, how many MB or GB? You don't need to burn them all onto CD or DVD. As long as you have both the PC and the Mac Mini together at the same time, you can network them up, and transfer everything over that way. Much faster and easier than burning a whole lot of CDs or DVDs. Chances are your PC will have an Ethernet/LAN port, but it doesn't hurt to double check. The Mac Minis all do.

What are the specs of your PC by the way? Just out of interest.

The best emulator out there is Microsoft's Virtual PC. It costs a few hundred dollars though. What are the programs you have which are only available for PC? What do they do? Chances are that there's a similar Mac program out there which will be able to do the same thing. Let us know what you're looking for.

Yes, as far as I know, Macs can read CDs and DVDs burnt on a PC. I'm not sure about the other way round, but I know if you use Roxio Toast it gives you an option to create a PC-readable CD.

Anything else, feel free to ask! Hope this helps you!
Thanks to everyone for their help.

To answer B Gallagher's questions:
I have a Dell 4100 P3 733 Mhz with a CDRW with 128 MB RAM.
I think it has Ethernet card (it's connected to the cable modem).
I have around 20 gigabytes of MP3's.

The PC-only programs I was talking about include 2xAV (can slow down playback of audiofiles) and MP3 splitter & joiner. Also some small foreign language programs which I'm sure have no mac versions, but aren't as important.
I have programs for digitizing audio from audiocassettes as well as ripping MP3's from WAV files. I assume I wouldn't have to pay for such software on the mac. Correct assumption?
Also, I have windows 98 (I know, stone age stuff). Would that be a problem as far as transferring files?
     
walkerjs
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Sep 19, 2005, 11:39 PM
 
Windows 98 should not have a problem (or any barriers to) sharing files to copy to your new Mac.

iTunes will happily convert .wav files to mp3 or any other format you wish, and there are other free audio converting programs such as Audacity if Garageband doesn't work for you. As for converting audio cassette to mp3, you will need something to 'record' from audiotape to digital format. Audacity will do this. If you get a Mac Mini you will need something like an iMic USB peripheral (about $30) since the Mini doesn't have an audio in jack. Until mine died from a liquid related accident it worked fine for that task. Recording from audiotape is a one-to-one timewise proposition no matter what platform, however, since it's an analog to digital kind of thing whether it be windows, Linux, Mac, or otherwise.
     
icibaqu
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Sep 20, 2005, 03:52 PM
 
two quick things

get the mac.

if you already have a keyboard and a mouse and a screen that you want to use then the mac mini is a good option for intro.

if not then the imac is a good option because it's a ****load of computer.

as to the switching: if you buy a mac at the store and put all the files you want to transfer into a folder (music, documents, photos, whatever), they will copy that folder over for you FREE OF CHARGE.

sound easy enough?
     
cjon  (op)
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Sep 20, 2005, 09:09 PM
 
Originally Posted by icibaqu
two quick things

get the mac.

if you already have a keyboard and a mouse and a screen that you want to use then the mac mini is a good option for intro.

if not then the imac is a good option because it's a ****load of computer.

as to the switching: if you buy a mac at the store and put all the files you want to transfer into a folder (music, documents, photos, whatever), they will copy that folder over for you FREE OF CHARGE.

sound easy enough?

I already have a monitor and mouse.
But are their any windows emulators that can run on a mac mini?
     
Helmling
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Sep 20, 2005, 09:19 PM
 
Virtual PC will run on the Mini, but you have to buy the emulator itself and have your own copy of Win 98.

Apparently (this is second-hand as I will not darken my harddrive with Windows) Win 98 runs better in emulation and since that's what you had before then it's ideal.

Otherwise, if you buy the off-the-shelf Virtual PC you get XP home with it and that's much slower (again, from what I hear).
     
only120xs
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Sep 21, 2005, 01:27 PM
 
There are other, cheaper, options for emulation besides Virtual PC. I am using Guest PC, which from what I read was the best of the alternatives. It runs fairly well, but I have a 2Ghz iMac with 1Gig of RAM, so that's not a very good comparison to a mini. Something to consider though since Guest PC is only $70 for a family license (and you already have Win 98 - which is perfect for emulation).
     
xargos
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Sep 21, 2005, 02:46 PM
 
Originally Posted by cjon
The PC-only programs I was talking about include 2xAV (can slow down playback of audiofiles) and MP3 splitter & joiner. Also some small foreign language programs which I'm sure have no mac versions, but aren't as important.
I have programs for digitizing audio from audiocassettes as well as ripping MP3's from WAV files. I assume I wouldn't have to pay for such software on the mac. Correct assumption?
Also, I have windows 98 (I know, stone age stuff). Would that be a problem as far as transferring files?
As walkerjs mentioned, Audacity is a great option for working with audio. It can also digitize audio and convert between file formats. If you want to try it before hand, you can get the Windows version (it's available for Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, etc...) at http://audacity.sourceforge.net/.

Also, even if you're sure there are no Mac versions of the foreign language software you use, have you looked for alternatives? Just about any kind of program you want has an equivalent on Mac OS X and other operating systems.
     
MichiganRich
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Sep 21, 2005, 02:53 PM
 
Why not just keep the old Dell around, and concentrate on putting together a nice little home network? The Dell will unequivocably run your old Windows-only apps MUCH better than Virtual PC on the Mac. Just because you're getting something newer (and in the long run I think you'll find better) doesn't mean you have to pitch out your old Dell that is doing the things you need it to do. Especially considering you're on cable modem, get a cheap 4-port router (and maybe wireless if you feel like trying that with the Mini) and have them talking to each other like old friends. That way you can use your old apps to do things, but transfer the files to the new Mini to work with.

The router idea would alos give you a hardware NAT firewall, for some extra security that you might not have thought about before...
     
cjon  (op)
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Sep 21, 2005, 06:31 PM
 
Originally Posted by MichiganRich
Why not just keep the old Dell around, and concentrate on putting together a nice little home network? The Dell will unequivocably run your old Windows-only apps MUCH better than Virtual PC on the Mac. Just because you're getting something newer (and in the long run I think you'll find better) doesn't mean you have to pitch out your old Dell that is doing the things you need it to do. Especially considering you're on cable modem, get a cheap 4-port router (and maybe wireless if you feel like trying that with the Mini) and have them talking to each other like old friends. That way you can use your old apps to do things, but transfer the files to the new Mini to work with.

The router idea would alos give you a hardware NAT firewall, for some extra security that you might not have thought about before...
That seems like a good idea. I would just have to switch the monitor when using the Dell. why didn't I think of that?
     
Helmling
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Sep 21, 2005, 07:22 PM
 
Get a switch box from Radio Shack...even easier.

Though I'd still recommend pitching in the extra bucks for the iMac.

They rock.

(Did I really say something cheesy like that? Huh...)
     
cjon  (op)
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Sep 21, 2005, 08:12 PM
 
Originally Posted by MichiganRich
Why not just keep the old Dell around, and concentrate on putting together a nice little home network? The Dell will unequivocably run your old Windows-only apps MUCH better than Virtual PC on the Mac. Just because you're getting something newer (and in the long run I think you'll find better) doesn't mean you have to pitch out your old Dell that is doing the things you need it to do. Especially considering you're on cable modem, get a cheap 4-port router (and maybe wireless if you feel like trying that with the Mini) and have them talking to each other like old friends. That way you can use your old apps to do things, but transfer the files to the new Mini to work with.

The router idea would alos give you a hardware NAT firewall, for some extra security that you might not have thought about before...
Oh yeah, do you know of any sites that can tell me how to do this? I 'm not very knowledgable about these things (I don't really know what a 4-port router is).
     
sworthy
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Sep 22, 2005, 01:34 AM
 
MP3 Joiner

Slow down audio

There's almost always an equally good, if not better, app for the mac.
     
mousehouse
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Sep 22, 2005, 05:40 AM
 
or just install "Remote Desktop" and have the screen of your Dell on the Mac
MacBook Pro 13"/2.66 (09/2010), Mac Mini c2d/1.83 (01/2008)
     
   
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