The ‘OS’ in ‘OS upgrade’ doesn’t mean ‘Oh, shit!’

A while back I mentioned that I was contemplating kicking the old iBox into the future with an OS upgrade to Mavericks. Being both a sluggard and a paranoid, I never quite got around to it, until last night.

It was the perfect time, really. Monday was a rest day in the Giro; I’d wrapped the most recent review and video for Adventure Cyclist; and I didn’t have a BRAIN deadline until Thursday.

There was one evil omen (there always is). The ‘puter’s optical drive went spastic on me, as they apparently do in the iMac. Mine will read and play audio CDs, but spits out movie and software discs like an infant who won’t eat his puréed spinach. So if something went sideways during the install I wouldn’t have access to my original system discs (I was still running Snow Leopard, or OS X 10.6.8).

True, I had a belt-and-suspenders HD-backup system — both Time Machine and SuperDuper! — but being familiar with Murphy’s Law through bitter, painful experience, I decided to score an external optical drive, just in case.

I went Apple, of course, which means expensive — and in this case, inoperative. Seems their $79 disc-spinner won’t work with a pre-2012 iMac, and mine is a 2009 (read those system requirements, kids, and don’t forget to say your prayers). SuperDrive, me arse.

So I barreled over to Best Buy and picked up an LG for less than half that and it worked like a top. Suck it, Cupertino.

Then I reminded myself the worst that could happen was I’d get a chance to swear a lot and buy a new computer, and pulled the trigger. Ka-pow! Three hours later the old iBeast had a new brain. It’s alive! It’s alive! It’s aaaalllliiiiiiiive!


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22 Responses to “The ‘OS’ in ‘OS upgrade’ doesn’t mean ‘Oh, shit!’”

  1. Steve O Says:

    You got the new OS installed… Just in time for WWDC, where they’ll probably announce the even newer OS that you’ll need to install…

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      I know … it’s right up there with buying a new Mac. The instant you get the credit card back, they release a new model that’s better, faster, cheaper, makes coffee in the morning, empties the litter box, lies to the IRS, buys the beer, does the grocery shopping. …

      • Steve O Says:

        For second there I thought those days were over… Nobody really gives a shit about how fast the computer is anymore, because everything is up in the cloud and it’s the inter-tubes connecting you there that dictate speed. So, for a second, I thought a good sturdy reliable computer on to be able to last 10 years or so. But as always, just when the consumer thinks he’s winning, the corporation pulls the rug out from under you. Now the long pole in the tent is your processors ability to handle the operating system du jour. I have one of the first MacBooks with an Intel processor, and I thought that would last forever, but it’s not dual core, which is required for everything past Leopard. So you might have a computer that technically works, but nobody wants to maintain software for older machines, so you can’t do much with it unless you’re okay using older versions of everything. And even then, basic stuff like Safari or chrome might not work, flash or Java applets won’t work, etc.

      • Patrick O'Grady Says:

        Steve, I have that model MacBook too … 2006, right? I maxed out the RAM and swapped out the hard drive for a solid-state drive and it still works surprisingly well. But you’re right, Snow Leopard is where she stops. Still, that’s a solid OS.

  2. Pat O'Brien Says:

    It’s good to be the canary in the mine, right? Let me know how it goes, then I can decide whether to pull the trigger or not on my iMac. Snow Leopard is running well on my 2008 model, bought in early 2009.

    One thing I have discovered on our new iPad air is that it doesn’t recognize my Airport Express in the studio connected to the stereo receiver as another pair of speakers. On the iMac, it shows up as an additional pair of speakers when using iTunes, but not on the iPad. Not sure what to do about it, but haven’t researched it yet.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      So far, so good, Pat. I used it to work today’s Giro stage with Consigliere Pelkey. My old must-haves, Photoshop Elements 8 and Office 2011, seem to function properly.

      Learned something new about the iPad 2 this afternoon. You can’t view it in portrait mode if you’re wearing polarized lenses. Seriously. I was trying to update the DogS(h)ite on the back deck, and every time I flipped the sumbitch to portrait to access a WordPress-app menu that was hidden in landscape, boom! Fade to black.

      I was this close to getting out the Bravo Foxtrot Hotel until Mr. Google explained what was happening.

      • Pat O'Brien Says:

        I forgot one very important thing. If I install Mavericks, I might lose the Burning Monkeys. I don’t know if I could bear it.

  3. Steve O Says:

    Even following the Apple health book rumors?

    The rumor is it will measure everything from soup to nuts, probably even tell you if your nuts are still working.

    The annual prostate exam is especially a doozy. Make sure you wrap your iPhone in saran wrap before you shove it up there.

    Going to measure blood pressure, heart rate, blood oxidation, hydration, even liver function — and there’s a special setting for the latter for Irishmen, so the app isn’t confused by the amount of pickling.

    Despite my tone, if it all pans out, it could be a really good thing. With diabetes on the rise in this country, the potential for blood sugar monitoring without getting prior approval and paying your co-pay could mean great things for the fattest industrialized nation on planet earth

    • Pat O'Brien Says:

      Too much information for me. I used to have a home blood pressure monitor, got obsessed with it, and drove myself crazy. Took it to the doctor to check against their unit, and the sumbitch was reading 15 points high on both ends. Made me think I was getting ready to do the SNL Julia Child bit next time I cut myself in the kitchen. Ignorance IS bliss.

  4. Pat O'Brien Says:

    I should say my Imac is running well since I took your advice to add memory. I added 2gb, for a total of 3, and it is working just great with Snow Leopard. So for anyone else thinking about installing Snow Leopard, 1gb of memory is not enough for it to run properly.

  5. Debby no longer in Longtucky Says:

    Congrats on your successful upgrade, POG. I’d buy a Mac but our office VPN only supports Windoze so for now I’m locked into the Microsoft world.

    I did have a successful upgrade yesterday, getting a new modem online with Comcast. Now I can return the old one to them and quit paying the monthly lease charges. I’ve thrown away way too much money on that over the years! The new modem is faster and will pay for itself in less than a year.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      Debby, that’s my next upgrade, and I want to get it done before the Tour. My last DSL-modem upgrade was a monumental nightmare. Despite my reputation as a grump, grouch and curmudgeon, I’m not ordinarily a screamer, but Qwest had me spending a good part of several days screaming at various eejits over the phone.

      CenturyLink has since taken over and I’m hoping for a smoother path to higher speeds.

  6. John O Says:

    Good luck with CenturyLink. Just trying to get CRC’s phone numbers switch dot the new location is proving to be quite the problem.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      Oy. Why does this fail to surprise me? We’ll be back to communicating with smoke signals, semaphore flags and log drums here directly.

      • Pat O'Brien Says:

        Guys, the extra memory was $40, the software update was $19, so I don’t think a bike was possible. Maybe a tire?

      • Pat O'Brien Says:

        The reply above was for Larry T. and Weaksides. Speaking of smoke, Oak Creek Canyon, just North of Sedona, has a nasty fire that started yesterday.

      • weaksides (@weaksides) Says:

        Well my comment was more toward computer upgrades of any kind I suppose, but your point is well taken.

        But please keep in mind I am spending an insurance check and trying to find the best way to “spread it around”. A situation I realize you’re not experiencing. My apologies good sir.

      • Pat O'Brien Says:

        No apologies required for my poor attempt at a joke. Yours and Larry’s was better. Certainly an insurance check is best spent on a new bike. Maybe a custom job handmade for you out of ti or maybe 953 Reynolds. Now that would get Larry’s heart going!

  7. Dale Says:

    I feel like a Democrat at a Tea Party rally. I’ve never owned an Apple anything. Windows 8 may change that though. I have a little netbook (XP) that needs replacing. What’s a Luddite to do?

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