I spent most of yesterday doing computer things, and it was kind of nice to dig into that. Earlier, before Christmas, Mark bought a Mac mini used off a friend, and I’ve been trying to fit the new computer into our little home network here.

Beauty and the Geek
Photo credit: Wikipedia

It is interesting how things happens in cluster. Mum too has a new computer, and she has asked me to prepare it. When I was up there, we got her a Windows 7 license and I installed it on her machine. But… when she first asked me, she wanted me to put Windows XP on it. Now mum complains that she can’t find anything…

Many users like Windows XP, but it’s insecure and bad and dangerous these days, and if you’re a lab manager with corporate secrets lying around on your hard drives, the last thing you need is that old clunker. XP leaks like a sieve, and it’s not made for modern hardware, and it has more holes than a Swiss cheese. For the safety of all of us, XP should be retired and abandoned. For instance, XP is a favourite of bot-net operators because it is so easy to hijack computers that run it.

And then, when I came home, I’ve been dragging my feet about incorporating this Mac into our network because I’m really not used to Mac things. One annoying thing is the mouse, which only had one button, and I’m used to having two. Fortunately, it was easy to change the mouse out for one that was more useful. But while I’m cautious so long as I’m so inexperienced with the platform, it looks like it would be relatively straight-forward to integrate a Mac on my primarily Windows/Linux network.

At least Mark can now do some work on the Mac; only standard computing things though. His sciencey software only works on Windows though, and so I still need to make the Mac dual-boot. But I promise, unlike Mum I’m not going to put XP on it. Though, I have been tempted to sneak Linux with WINE when Mark is not looking. Maybe Materials Studio will work under Wine? 🙂

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