WPA for Original AirPort, Stainless Browser, Multiple Input Bug Persists in Snow Leopard, and More
- WPA Support for Original AirPort Card
- Stainless Browser
- Pismo Upgrades: G3 vs. G4
- 17" PowerBook Still Does All I Need
- Multiple Inputs with Snow Leopard
Thanks for the article on Shiira! That's just what I needed to help the browsing experience on my old Macs. While Safari 4 was certainly quite faster than anything else on my old Ti G4 (550 MHz w/ 1 GB of RAM and an upgraded 5400 rpm hard drive), Shiira is just . . . amazing. I was consistently impressed for the 20 minutes I used it last night on how even with Flash enabled, it loaded pages faster than Safari 4 - where I have Flash disabled.
My question now comes - and this is the one nagging thing about the TiBook that may make a MacBook Pro happen - is there any way to swap a different internal AirPort card in a TiBook? Mine has the original "B" AirPort, which is just fine but one glaring problem - it doesn't support WPA. Any suggestions???
Yes, Shiira is amazingly speedy on the old PPCs.
Re: your TiBook question, it appears that your only recourse is to go with a third party CardBus adapter.
More info on these forums:
Editor's note: Last year we published How About an 802.11g Card for the Original AirPort Card Slot? One reason we proposed this was speed; the other was for WPA support. It turns out that the firmware in Apple's original 802.11b AirPort Card can be updated to support WPA. You must be running Mac OS X 10.3.3 or later and use AirPort Software 3.3 or later to update the firmware. Even after that, the original AirPort Card cannot support the newer, more secure WPA2 encryption. dk
Have you tried this browser yet: http://www.stainlessapp.com
Yes, and I like it a lot, especially the little bookmarks bar on the left, but unfortunately, Stainless doesn't support OS X 10.4 Tiger, which makes it unusable on my Pismo PowerBooks. Shiira still supports Tiger.
Thanks so much for getting back to me. I appreciate your comments. When it comes to Mac, I'm basically only using OS 9 now. It's mostly for legacy hardware/software use - and because I really like the Classic interface. I can also get most of the parts for cheap on eBay and local shops.
I'm a native PC user and find OS X just too far off the beaten path for me. That and trying to keep up with the continuous Apple-imposed upgrade treadmill is expensive and bothersome. On the other hand, Windows XP came out in 2001 and still works with 99% of the PC software out there. I gave an honest attempt at making OS X work for me recently with haxies and helper apps. No offense to Mac users, but it's just too strange for a guy who grew up with Windows :-)
But I have another question for you. If you were just using OS 9 on the Pismo, would you go the G4 or G3 upgrade route? I don't know if OS 9 can even take advantage of the G4 processor. Appreciate your insight.
I do wish USB 2.0 was a reality for the older machines, but time does march on, eh? I'll have to save that feature for my PC laptop when I get one. Meanwhile, the older Macs are a lot of fun, and I've learned a lot.
Have a great day,
Mac OS 9 is so fast on a stock Pismo (at least with a decent amount of RAM installed) that, were I not interested in running OS X, I would find it hard to justify the expense of a processor upgrade.
I'm sure that when using software that likes a lot of processing power (e.g.: Photoshop or dictation software) you would notice better performance with a G4 processor, but otherwise, the stock G3 is really no slouch running the classic OS.
I think you're right for the most part that OS 9 runs quick on the Pismo, but I forgot to mention that I'm also trying to play some MPEG video files, and I'm finding the 400 MHz Pismo just a little too slow to keep up. It's not able to play all the frames and stuttering quite a bit. So I'm wondering if QuickTime would work better with an upgraded G4 or G3. What do you think?
While a G4 processor upgrade would probably help some, the real video bottleneck in the Pismo is unfortunately the Rage 128 Mobility graphics processing unit with its puny 8 MB of video RAM, which, alas, is not upgradable and is arguably the Pismo's Achilles' heel.
On the other hand, since your Pismo is one of the 400 MHz units, you would enjoy a more substantial increase in general performance in areas where AltiVec optimization doesn't enter into the equation than I have with my Pismos, which were 500 MHz models.
"Your humble servant bought one of these second generation 17" PowerBooks, an Apple Certified Refurbished unit, in February 2006. It hasn't missed a beat in more than 30 months of intensive use as my number one production machine at this writing and has to rank as one of the very best computers I've ever owned."
Gotta agree with that. I bought the same unit (new). Upgraded the memory and hard drive. My wife keeps saying I need a newer computer, but it still does everything I need, quickly and reliably.
And as long as it keeps doing the job for you, why upgrade?
I waited more than three years after the Apple Intel switch to move to a Macintel. The performance increase is exponential for some things, but it really depends on what you need to do with computers.
I'm still blown away by how well my old G4-upgraded Pismos perform the tasks I require of them, which includes scanning and some light-to-medium duty image work.
On the other hand, if one is dependent to a degree on dictation software, as I am, MacSpeech Dictate (Intel only) is in a completely different dimension from their older PPC-supporting iListen.
My wife is loving the 17" PowerBook.
"MacSpeech Dictate (Intel only) is in a completely different dimension from their older PPC-supporting iListen."
I was one of the founders of MacSpeech. For $100, you got a T-shirt and a license.
As far as the MacBooks go, they are much faster at anything DVD-related (ripping/burning), but most other tasks (even Aperture processing) are handled fine by the AlBook.
Thanks and good on you for your contributions to the MacSpeech project.
Ironically, I still do my burning and ripping (I don't do a lot) on my Pismo PowerBook, which has a 8x dual-layer DVD burning expansion bay module.
I ran across your mouse input device problem with Leopard on the Mac in your article Multiple Input Device Bug in Mac OS X 10.5.8.
I was very interested in this, because I have the same issues that you have (mine is chronic RSI to my hands), and I also need the multiple input devices to work as well. I use a trackpad on the floor and use my left foot to do my clicking and dragging, while using a trackball on my desktop to move my cursor.
I was interested to know if you ever found a solution to this problem or a workaround?
Unfortunately, I have not found or heard of any solution to this problem in Leopard, and the latest report I have from Snow Leopard users is that it persists in that version of the Mac OS as well.
The best I've been able to come up with is to use a mouse with light pressure action and hold it down in the conventional way when I need to click and drag.
Fortunately, for some functions, such as submenu selections, one can simply click and then move the mouse to the desired point, then click again to execute.
If you ever do come across a more satisfactory workaround, please let me know.
Charles Moore has been a freelance journalist since 1987 and began writing for Mac websites in May 1998. His The Road Warrior column was a regular feature on MacOpinion, he is news editor at Applelinks.com and a columnist at MacPrices.net. If you find his articles helpful, please consider making a donation to his tip jar.
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