Linux distributions (a.k.a. distros) are a great free alternative to Windows for both PCs and older Intel Macs. With hundreds of distros available, it can be hard to decide, but Elementary OS stands out.
The original Asus EeePC can handle Windows XP very well, but the 4 GB SSD can be a bit cramped. Here is how to slim it and tweak it.
I saw an advertisement on television a few days ago for the new Google ChromeBook. Originally launched in 2010, I had shown a small amount of interest in them, but the new price was the clincher that made me sit up and pay attention.
Until 1995, Microsoft Windows took a back seat to the Macintosh. Although Windows 3.x supported 256 color 320 x 200 VGA mode, by default is used a higher resolution (and thus sharper) 16 color mode. There wasn’t the least thing pretty about it. By contrast, Macintosh System 7 was very impressive, with its support for […]
I haven’t always been a Mac user. I started my computing days out on a Commodore 64 and an Acorn 3010. I bought my first PC from my employer in 1997 – a massive, heavy beige tower containing a 486DX2-66 processor, 64 MB RAM, 500 MB hard drive, a CD-ROM drive, and a 15″ SVGA […]
Is it really fair to compare a three-year-old operating system to a three-month-old one? Maybe not (for the three-year-old), but it is interesting.
Back in February, my first generation 13″ MacBook Pro died of logic board failure, and I was forced to sell it due to the fact that I was starting dual credit courses at my local community college and needed a small, cheap, lightweight laptop that could follow me around and take a beating. I was […]
2012 – According to Horace Dediu in The Evolution of the Computing Value Chain, Microsoft has had the dominant operating system almost since that day in 1981 when the first IBM PC shipped with PC-DOS, Big Blue’s version of MS-DOS. From DOS through Windows, Microsoft has held the top spot – until now.
What does thermal compound do, and why should you be concerned about it? Call me simple, but I had no idea what thermal compound was until about a year ago when I decided to upgrade the factory-installed RAM on my iMac G4. Apparently there is a two-part heatsink in the good ol’ Luxo Mac that […]
Swap space. Swap files. Page files. Virtual memory. It’s all pretty much the same thing: Extending your computer’s physical system memory (RAM) by swapping data to and from your hard drive or SSD.
There’s just something about a ThinkPad. Whether it’s the solid build quality that gets you or the strange charm of that boring black case, the ThinkPad line manages to capture that feeling of portable, professional power like none other (well, unless you’re from our sister site, Low End Mac, where the PowerBook G3 Pismo reigns […]
It has been a roller coaster of computing in my life recently. About 18 months ago, after 10 years of being a hard-core dedicated Mac user, I decided that I wanted to try something else. Linux.
In the Mac world, netbooks exist on the Windows side of the fence. Until the recent unveiling of the iPad, Apple hadn’t throw its hat into the subnotebook arena. Even at that, the iPad is a tablet. For those of us who have become enamored with netbooks due to their size, real keyboards, and minimalistic functionality, […]
Clinky-plink! That’s the sound of the precursor to the ever-popular, ever-clicky IBM Model M keyboard – the Model F. All that plinky-sounding goodness is being heard letter by letter as I write this article.
Everyone knows about the federal Cash for Clunkers program that’s done wonders for auto dealers, but we were taken by surprise to receive a press release from Microsoft about its Cash for Clunker Computers rebate program.
A long time ago, in a time that seems like forever ago, computers were over-engineered to a high standard – especially in regards to computer keyboards. With a tactile feedback and a loud clicking sound, these were the well-oiled peripherals of yesteryear.
Our friends in Cupertino are at it again, according to our MacMole. This time Apple is finding new ways to get Macs into the workplace almost invisibly.
2007 – “What’s happened to Low End Mac lately?” It’s a question I hear from readers and staff members. “What’s with the spate of pro-Windows articles? Why do you let your writers advocate for Windows?”
In its never-ending quest to tax everything it can think of, the IRS has taxed income, profits, death, and marriage. Attempts to tax email have stalled, but only because even a 100% tax on something free is still nothing.
There was a time when every part of a computer was manufactured to the highest possible quality standard. Some called it good quality control. Some called it over-engineering. I call it being good, old fashioned, and built to last.
A long, long time ago – back in the days when Outpost.com had an affiliate program – I got my first laser printer. The HP LaserJet 2100TN was fast for its day (10 pages per minute), solidly built, and sharp (1200 dpi output). I used it for about 8 years, and it probably would have […]
January 2006 – Welcome to the inaugural issue of Low End Living and my inaugural column. While the primary focus here is living smart, be it in terms of money, health, or relationships, all three of those things can be improved by taking other stress out of your life.
2003: A recent report from MacUser UK indicates that some analysts believe that Apple may have missed the Tablet PC boat. One can just hear the vultures circling.
While researching this series of articles on small form-factor PCs, I was not entirely altruistic in my motives. I was also looking at a way of putting together a small form-factor computer of my own. My goal was a computer that I could take places without breaking my back or my wallet.
In a lot of respects, the Dreamcast was ahead of its time. It was released in 1998 in Japan and 1999 in the rest of the world – a year before PlayStation 2 – and was the first 128-bit console gaming system ever. Sega, a Japanese company started by American expatriate David Rosen in the 1950s, seemed […]
Last week I talked a bit about Linux and the low end. Linux offers some of the same modern foundations of Mac OS X, but it can run well on older computers. Last week I hinted that I would talk about the fatal flaw of Linux.
Last week I was reading an article [no longer online] about how one county was saving several million dollars a year by implementing Linux on all it’s desktops. It wasn’t only the Information Technology department – it was secretaries, receptionists, firefighters, police officers, and other county employees.
Monday, July 9, 2001: I finally got DSL up and running over the weekend. It’s been a long story that started last summer when EarthLink announced DSL service for Grand Rapids (MI). I put my name on the waiting list – and waited and waited and waited.
2001 – This tutorial is a bit different from the others. Most of the time I teach tricks and tell you how to do stuff on your Mac. This time, I wish – with all the arrogance that this implies – to educate you regarding things that you should not do, whether on a Mac […]
I couldn’t believe it – a US$19 USB extended keyboard! At that price, it was worth a try. From the photo (below), it looked like a match for the Apple Extended Keyboard layout, or at least very close.