Mac News Review

Tiger Disk Utility Warning, Battery Powered Mac mini, $100 Education Rebate, Mac Satellite Internet Service, and More

This Week's Apple and Desktop Mac News

Compiled by Charles Moore and edited by Dan Knight - 2005.05.20

This Week's Apple and Desktop Mac News

PowerBook, iBook, iPod, and other portable computing is covered in The 'Book Review. iPod news is covered in The iNews Review.

Tiger Talk

News & Opinion

Tips

Reviews

Products and Services

Desktop Mac Deals

Tiger Talk

Only Use Mac OS X 10.4-Compatible Disk Utilities with Mac OS X 10.4 Volumes

A new Apple Knowledge Base article says:

"To avoid issues with a Mac OS X 10.4 volume, do not use disk utility software that was released before Tiger (late April 2005) with it. If you do, the software might report false errors or attempt 'repairs' that could lead to data loss.

"Third-party disk utility software includes Alsoft DiskWarrior, Micromat Tech Tool, and Symantec Norton Disk Doctor. Consult third-party utility manufacturers to find out which software versions are compatible with Mac OS X 10.4.

"You can use Disk Utility in Mac OS X 10.3.9 and only version 10.3.9 to check or repair a Mac OS X 10.4 volume. Don't use an earlier version of Disk Utility, such as when started from a Mac OS X 10.3 disc.

"Of course, you can also use Disk Utility included with Mac OS X Tiger.

"Mac OS X 10.4 adds support for Extended Attributes. A disk repair application that's not Mac OS X 10.4-aware may incorrectly report Extended Attributes as directory damage. You may get an error message such as "Cannot be rebuilt. The original directory is too severely damaged" that is untrue.

"To prevent these issues, make sure that you only use Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger-compatible disk utilities to verify or repair a volume that has Tiger installed on it."

DiskWarrior Updated for Tiger

PR: DiskWarrior is the most highly decorated Mac disk repair utility ever. It repairs disks that no other program can repair. New hardware monitoring helps protect your data from drive malfunctions.

DiskWarriorDiskWarrior is claimed to be the safest, the most technologically advanced, and the most powerful utility to eliminate directory damage available for any computer. DiskWarrior uses a different approach to disk directory repair than other programs. DiskWarrior is not a disk repair program in the conventional sense. Instead of patching the original directory, it uses a patent-pending technology to quickly build a new replacement directory using data recovered from the original directory, thereby recovering files and folders that you thought were lost and that no other program could recover.

The first thing DiskWarrior does is it scavenges your original directory to find all the file data it can. It then uses this data to build an entirely new replacement directory. DiskWarrior is the only product that finds all of your data. Its patent pending method always results in a perfectly rebuilt directory without any errors and that contains all of your file and folder data.

Hardware failure presents a potential threat to your data. When a drive mechanism fails, the data on the drive can be lost, with an expensive data recovery service your only option to retrieve your data. DiskWarrior can be used to activate internal diagnostics that are built into disk devices to help determine if a drive is in danger of physical malfunction. If the potential for failure is indicated, DiskWarrior will notify you, giving you the opportunity to back up your data before the drive fails. These tests can be executed manually, or you can choose to have the tests run automatically every hour, day, or week. DiskWarrior also provides several notification options should the diagnostics report a problem.

With DiskWarrior there is never a risk of losing directory data and thus never a risk of losing access to your files.

Only DiskWarrior has all of these features:

  • Uses directory data to quickly rebuild the directory structure
  • Eliminates risk of losing access to files - other disk "repair" utilities attempt to fix the directory by patching the directory structure and risk deleting sections of the directory
  • Scavenges directory to find all salvageable file and folder data, even data contained in damaged nodes
  • Eliminates unseen directory errors, preventing minor directory errors from escalating into major problems
  • Recovers lost files and folders
  • Optimizes directory for maximum directory performance, speeding up overall disk performance
  • Monitors drive hardware for potential drive failure
  • Verification of replacement directory ensures data integrity
  • Comparison of original directory with replacement directory tells you which files and folders may have been affected by directory damage
  • Patented preview feature to view what the disk will look like after the directory is rebuilt, allowing you to view files and folders before any directory changes are written to disk
  • Repairs damaged boot blocks and blesses the system folder to ensure that the computer will start from the repaired disk
  • Checks custom icon files for corruption, eliminating a common cause of system crashes
  • Repairs problems with wrapper volume System files caused when HFS Plus disks are initialized under Mac OS 9.0 - 9.0.4
  • Safely permits interruptions of any kind, including power outages
  • Advanced "Verify Reads and Writes" technology protects your data
  • Supports bad block sparing software
  • Supports file journaling (Mac OS X 10.2.2 or later)

DiskWarrior ships on a CD-ROM that will start up in Mac OS X on a Mac with a G3 or higher processor (including a G5) with built-in USB and 128 MB of RAM (256 MB recommended).

Once started from the DiskWarrior CD, DiskWarrior can be run from the CD to eliminate all damage to any HFS (Mac OS Standard) and HFS Plus (Mac OS Extended) disk directories, including your normal startup disk as well as journaled disks. Version 2.1 of DiskWarrior, also included, runs and installs on a 68020 Mac or better when started from Mac OS 7.1 to 9.x. Either version of DiskWarrior repairs any supported disk no matter which version of the Mac OS is installed on the disk being repaired.

To rebuild the directory on a Mac OS Standard (HFS) or Mac OS Extended (HFS Plus) disk, DiskWarrior requires a Mac OS computer with a G3 or better processor (such as a G4 or G5) with built-in USB and a minimum of 256 MB RAM (384 MB or more recommended) to start up and run from the DiskWarrior CD, regardless of what operating system is installed on the disk to be rebuilt. The computer must also have the latest firmware updates installed. The disk to be rebuilt must be locally connected, must not be write protected, and must have a valid partition map. If you plan to rebuild the directory on your startup disk, you need to start up from another disk capable of starting up in Mac OS X 10.2.1 through 10.4, such as the DiskWarrior CD. (DiskWarrior cannot be run while started up from the Apple Mac OS X install CD.)

Note: DiskWarrior CD revision 38 is now shipping with DiskWarrior 3.0.3. All Mac models introduced as of 05/03/2005 and meeting the above requirements for DiskWarrior are supported. The new Power Mac G5 models introduced on 04/27/2005 and the new iMac models introduced on 05/03/2005 are supported.

If you wish to enable DiskWarrior's automatic hardware monitoring, you will need to install the DiskWarrior application on your Mac OS computer. To install the DiskWarrior application, you must have a Mac OS computer running Mac OS X 10.2.1 through 10.4 with at least 256 MB RAM. Installing DiskWarrior is not required to run the application from the DiskWarrior CD to rebuild a disk directory.

New in this version: Uses your original 3.0, 3.0.1 or 3.0.2 CD to create a new startup CD containing DiskWarrior 3.0.3, which adds Tiger compatibility. The new CD will only start up the same Mac models as the original CD. The included Read Me lists details and requirements.

System requirements: Mac OS X 10.2.1 or higher

DiskWarrior sells for $79.95 ($39.95 upgrade)

News & Opinion

Running a Mac mini on Batteries Inside the Case

Silas Bennett says:

"I had an itch to scratch so here it is...

"Earlier this week I read an article on the Debian Weekly News, about a Debian box running on 3 Watts, and it reminded me of a project that I was asked to put on the shelf some time ago. The gist of the article linked to by the DWN was that Alex Perry got to wondering how much power his Linksys switch was sucking down whilst running 24/7, and found that his Manga, an ARM based router box, not only consumed less power but was able to run full blown Debian to boot. His point was 'If I am going to pay to have a switch run 24/7, I might as well have the switch be a useful server as well.' Following his article the PepLink community promptly got X11 working on the Manga and Alex's website was updated with the screen shots, which I might add are quite amusing.

"While I do sympathize with the original thrust of the article, I must say that the Manga's ARM is a rather diminutive processor for a desktop machine these days. So my question is why would you run a Manga as a desktop to get down to the 3 Watt mark when for just a few more Watts you can run a box with a G4 processor? Yes, I am talking about that little machine that all of my geek friends (me included) seem to be drooling over as of late. The Mac mini!...

Mac mini with battery pack"Several months ago I was in need of finding a small but powerful computer that could be run for a long period of time on batteries and not be a burden to carry. I was looking at several embedded options from places like kontron and mini-box, when I saw an article on the Mac mini. Looking at the limited specs for the Mac mini on Apple's website, I began to suspect that if I removed the CD-ROM drive I would be able to fit a 'lithium-ion polymer' battery pack inside the vacated space. I say that I suspected this because Apple is lousy about posting specs about internals and stuff that your Grandparents wouldn't normally ask about. So I ran down to the local Apple store with my trusty calipers and had one of their technicians go into the back and measure the dimensions of the CD-ROM drive for me. The numbers that he gave me made my day; the batteries would fit! Now about power specs. Apple of course did not have the DC power specs online, and nobody I talked to at the Apple store or on the support line could get them for me. In an act of desperation, I resorted to sending email to combinations of addresses like steve_at_apple.com, sjobs_at_apple.com, steve.jobs_at_apple.com, etc. asking for the specs. Funny enough I got a reply (No, not from Steve Jobs) from an Engineer who was quite helpful. It looked like the Mac could do it, so I decided to get one and hack on it. The Mac was dirt cheap compared to the embedded systems, so it was a very limited risk approach to proceeding on the project."

The author managed to run his modified Mac mini for 1 hour and 50 minutes from battery power.

Mac mini on the Road

Mini Ture_MacJournal says:

"It is a little like all bases are loaded and someone has to walk. Well soon I will be off doing some walking. The University walking, on site and off site as more research need beckons.

"My Tools will consist of my trusty Nikon Camera and my Mac mini to see what prospects I can expect because I have a mirror of my pictorial data from the iMac G5 on it. It will be interesting to see if there are any spare monitors available to hook up to? This I think may be a new option for many Universities to have a monitor and switcher's kiosk or room where power is provided and monitors but bring your own Mac mini, keyboard and mouse, I have a small keyboard and a tiny mouse. I wonder if user and switcher labs will be set up?

"I am sure the discussion around the Mac mini will be fast and passionate and the hot topic."

Education Promo: Buy a Mac and Get $100 to Spend

College is all about studying, right? A Mac does everything you expect a computer to do and more. Every Mac runs Microsoft Office, connects to any network, and works seamlessly with Windows PCs. It also comes with groundbreaking software called iLife '05, which lets you do amazing things with your digital photos, movies, and music. So studying is suddenly much more fun.

And much more affordable. In addition to the savings you always receive with your student discount, you'll get $100 back by mail when you buy and take possession of a qualifying Mac* between May 2, 2005 and June 25, 2005.

* Excludes 12" iBook with CD-ROM drive, eMac, Mac mini, and Apple education promotional bundles. Terms and conditions apply. See rebate rules for details.

Tritton See2Add a Second Display to the Mac mini?

123macmini.com says:

"Tritton Technologies is working on having a Mac compatible version of their SEE2 USB 2.0 SVGA Adapter by the end of July. The SEE2 adapter allows you to add a second display through your USB 2.0 port. Mac and Mac mini owners will be able to extend and or mirror their desktop with the adapter."

Tips

Formatting & Partitioning a Hard Drive in OS X Tiger

Ken Stone's Final Cut Pro Website says:

"Partitioning a hard drive is the process of dividing a hard drive into separate, discrete sections, called 'volumes'. You can create up to 16 different partitions on a hard drive, each one can be of different size and format, even including the 'MS-DOS' format for use with PCs on a network. With hard drives getting bigger there are a number of reasons why you might want to partition a hard drive. One reason might be to divide the hard drive into two partitions, the first could be a bootable (start up) volume with the Mac OS installed, with the second volume used for capture or storage. Partitioning can also be used for organization purposes, i.e., each volume could be used as a media (scratch) drive, each for a different FCP Project. I typically partition into two volumes, one for FCP Captured media, the second for DVD SP projects, for Builds and MPEG 2 encoded files. With FireWire external hard drives reaching one Terabyte in size, partitioning the drive can make project and file management much more manageable."

Reviews

Best Power Mac G5 Boot Drive

The Arizona Macintosh Users Group's Arthur Whalem reports:

"What is the Best Macintosh G5 Boot Drive?

"For the past five months, I have been using a Maxtor DiamondMax 10 L01S300 300 GB SATA hard drive in a PowerMac G5 2.0 GHz Dual with great success. The Maxtor 300 GB is faster than the stock 160 GB that came with the PowerMac G5, quiet, supports NCQ and has a 16 MB cache. The PowerMac G5 and the iMac G5 can both use this drive internally as they support SATA 3.5" drives. The L01S300 is the retail version of the Maxtor 300 GB SATA that you will find at your local computer store and it comes with a one year warranty. Maxtor also produces an OEM version DiamondMax 10 6B300S0 with a three year warranty and the MaXLine III model 7B300S0 with a five year warranty.

"The Maxtor 300 GB SATA hard drive is a great performer in the PowerMac G5. I thought it would be interesting to see how it might compare against the Seagate ST3300831AS Barracuda 300 GB 7200.8 Internal SATA Hard Drive with NCQ. The Seagate comes with a five year warranty even in the retail box version which is very nice. There are several reviews on the Internet which discuss using Maxtor and Seagate 300 GB SATA drives in RAID configurations on a Macintosh. There are also several reviews discussing the use of Maxtor and Seagate hard drives with a PC. However, I have not seen any detailed reviews using a Seagate 300 SATA as a Macintosh G5 boot drive. This article explains how the Seagate 300 and Maxtor 300 hard drives compared when tested as internal boot drives using a PowerMac G5 2.0 GHz Dual."

Products and Services

ClickScroll 1.3 2D Scrolling Tool: No Scrollbars or Scroll Wheels

PR: ClickScroll gives your Mac a highly addictive feature: scrolling without scrollbars and scroll wheels.

No need to move your eyes anymore when you need to scroll a web page or a text document - simply call ClickScroll once and gently move your mouse around.

ClickScroll supports multi-button mice for fast access, as well as single-button ones. It is the perfect scrolling software for laptops users.

With ClickScroll, take advantage of the following features:

  • Seamless integration: ClickScroll can be called in virtually every Mac OS X application (Finder, Mail, Safari, Internet Explorer, Word, Photoshop, etc.).
  • Themes support: Do you want to create your own ClickScroll theme? Use the ClickScroll Interface Builder and let your creativity work for you !
  • Visual feedback: ClickScroll lets you know what it is doing all the time with a Mac OS X-friendly interface.
  • 2D scrolling: ClickScroll now supports both horizontal and vertical scrolling to provide a richer experience.

With ClickScroll, enjoy these unique features :

  • Themes support
  • 2D Scrolling
  • User-defined themes support

New in this version:

  • Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger support
  • Added the ability to invert scrolling
  • Now supports restricted accounts

System Requirements: Mac OS X 10.3 or better

ClickScroll is €6 shareware.

Macintosh Satellite Internet Service

PR: Frustrated with USB connections and systems that are designed for Windows? Skycasters offers the DW4020, a multi-user Macintosh satellite Internet system designed for business customers.

The 4020 provides 4 switched 10/100 ethernet ports with various configuration options. Option 1 includes NAT/DHCP with private-dynamic IP addressing. Option 2 provides a single (or multiple) public-static IP address(s). Option 2 requires a router or other NAT solution if the connection is to be shared. Skycasters offers many options on the DW4020. Please discuss your needs with a Skycasters Mac satellite Internet expert.

The Skycasters DW4020 does not use or require a Windows operating system. The DW4020 runs all software and provides a standard ethernet interface, providing the user(s) with an exceptional Mac satellite Internet connection. There is no requirement for any special software to be loaded on any users machines.

  • Standalone Internet Appliance
  • Embedded Real Time Operating System
  • Standard Ethernet Interface
  • No special Software To Load On Any Machines
  • Performance & Configuration Options
  • Compatible With SuperVPN

The 4020 provides 4 switched 10/100 ethernet ports with various configuration options.

Option 1 includes NAT/DHCP with private-dynamic IP addressing. Option 2 provides a single (or multiple) public-static IP address(s). Option 2 requires a router or other NAT solution if the connection is to be shared. Skycasters offers many options on the DW4020. Please discuss your needs with a Skycasters satellite Internet expert.

The Skycasters DW4020 high-speed satellite Internet system is 100% compatible with Macintosh. Skycasters is a Mac satellite Internet specialist - with Macintosh satellite Internet connections live in our support center, for the utmost in Mac satellite Internet support.

TechRestore Launches Overnight Power Supply Repair Service

PR: TechRestore, Inc. has announced that they have begun offering a new overnight power supply repair service for Power Macintosh G3, G4, and G5 systems.

Power supplies contain high-voltage components that operate under intense heat conditions, causing common failures in desktop and tower systems. The flat-rate, overnight service offers Mac users throughout the world the fastest and most economical way to replace a failed power supply in their computer systems.

"We take it for granted each time we power up our Mac systems with the familiar chime while the power supply provides the power to our boards, drives and often our monitors," said Shannon Jean, Founder and President of TechRestore. "With our new overnight power supply repair program, Mac " users throughout the world will now have the fastest replacement method available at a low, flat-rate price."

The TechRestore overnight power supply repair service is a complete, door-to-door service for customers throughout the world. Once a repair is scheduled, a RestoreBox is dispatched via overnight courier to the customer's location to pickup their power supply and return it overnight to TechRestore. Once received, the power supply is fully tested to insure that the unit is in fact defective and repaired units are then sent back to the customer via overnight courier. The flat-rate price for all power supply repairs is just $129, which includes all overnight shipping charges, parts and service labor to perform the repair.

OWC SuperDrives for iMac G5 and Cube G4 Dantz Certified

PR: In an ongoing effort to provide its customers with confidence and quality, Other World Computing (OWC) has secured Dantz/EMS certification and Dantz Retrospect backup support for additional Mercury SuperDrives.

Dantz has certified and is providing backup support for OWC Mercury internal 8X SuperDrives for iMac G5 and Cube G4 models. The OWC Mercury External FireWire/USB solutions and PowerBook and PowerMac internal options also have received Dantz certification.

"We feel so strongly about making our customers' investment as foolproof as possible, we have and will continue to seek Dantz/EMC certification for Dantz Retrospect support," said Larry O'Connor, president of OWC.

The OWC MercuryCUBE and MercuryG5 internal 8x SuperDrives clock burn speeds of up to 8x DVD (up to twice as fast as the original iMac G5 drive), 2.4x DVD Dual Layer and 24x CD. Dantz certification means the drives have full Dantz Retrospect backup support in addition to burn support of audio, data, music/video, etc., with nearly any Apple/Mac DVD- or CD-authoring application.

The OWC Mercury iMac G5 SuperDrive option is available for $169.95 and includes 10 pieces of media, Dantz Retrospect Backup, and NTI DragonBurn software. The Dantz-certified MercuryCube SuperDrive upgrade is offered for $259.95 with the same software and media.

Other models with up to 16x DVD burn speeds are available for other Apple Power Mac, eMac, and iMac models. An external solution compatible with nearly any system equipped with either FireWire or USB 2.0 also is available.

OWC Drops Price on Mercury Extreme G4/1.4-1.5 GHz Processor

PR: Other World Computing (OWC) announced it has reduced the price of its OWC Mercury Extreme G4/1.4-1.5 Gigahertz (GHz) processor upgrade from $429 to the new lower price of $395.

The new price is effective immediately through OWC at <http://www.macsales.com/extreme>.

"We are making it easier for customers to get these great processors in their hands by lowering the prices," said Larry O'Connor, president of OWC. "The OWC Mercury Extreme G4 is one of the most economical ways to upgrade an older Mac. And, as with all our processors, it is 100 percent compatible with Apple's recently unleashed Tiger."

The Mercury Extreme G4/1.4-1.5 GHz includes 256 KB of 1:1 L2 cache on-chip and 2 MB of high-speed L3 Cache, and is covered by OWC's three-year limited warranty and 30-day 100 percent money-back guarantee.

The processor is compatible with Apple PowerMac G4 AGP Graphics (Sawtooth), Gigabit Ethernet, Digital Audio and Quicksilver models, and with Mac OS 9.2.1 or higher, all versions of OS X 10.0.4 and later including Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger.

Visit www.macsales.com/extreme for pricing of, information on or to order any of the full line of OWC Mercury Extreme G4 Processor upgrades starting from $195 for 1.0 GHz.

Mini Pod Drive Enclosure/Hub Matches Mac mini

M9 Mac Mini PodPR: Macpower & Tytech Technology Co., Ltd. has long been well respected by Apple users for its unique smart storage solutions and USB/FireWire external enclosures. Macpower has furthered its commitment to support Mac users with the launch of its new M9. The M9 is a new external disk drive enclosure which also has a built in port replicator. It was created specifically to complement the Mac mini.

Technical Specifications:

  • 3 USB 2.0 High Speed Ports (Hub)
  • 3 FireWire Ports
  • Interactive Cooling System (Heat Sink & Auto Sensing Smart Fan)
  • Supports any 3.5" Hard Drive (ATA 6 Compatible)
  • External Power Adapter

M9-DX 3.5" Hard Drive Enclosure

The M9-DX is a new FireWire/USB external disk drive enclosure, which also has a built in port replicator. It was created specifically to complement the Mac Mini. Features a specially designed active/passive cooling system.

Bridge Chipset: Prolific 2507 / Oxford 911+

Case Material: High quality aluminum coloured plastic

Application: Any single 3.5" Parallel ATA Hard Drive (Desktop size) ATA-6 compatible

Features

  • USB 2.0 High-Speed 3-Port Hub
  • FireWire 1394a 3-Port Repeater/Hub
  • Switch for FireWire or USB hard disk mode
  • Smart interactive cooling system with thermal probe automatically regulating fan speed
  • Massive passive heat sink to radiate heat away from hard drive
  • Smart power switch - M9 will power up and down in tandem with your Mac mini
  • Special micro security slot designed to allow the M9 to be anchored to a desk

Interface/Ports

  • FireWire 400 (1394a) 3 ports (6-pin)
  • USB 2.0 High Speed (USB 1.1) 1 port (4-pin)
  • 1 Port upstream (B Type) / 3 Ports downstream (A Type)

Data Transfer

  • FireWire 400 (1394a) up to 400 Mbps (50 MB/s)
  • USB 2.0 up to 480 Mbps (60 MB/s)
  • USB 1.1 up to 12 Mbps (1.5 MB/s)

Mac Requirements

  • FireWire 400 (1394a): Mac OS 9.2 or higher
  • USB 2.0: Mac OS 10.2 or higher
  • USB 1.1: Mac OS 9.2 or higher
  • Your hardware device must have proper port or PCI card

Power Supply

  • External Power Adapter universal auto-switching (UL, cUL, CE, TUV approved)
  • Input: AC 100-240V, 1.2A, 50-60 Hz
  • Output: DC +5/1.5A , +12V/1.5A

Enclosure Size: 16.51cm x 16.51cm x 5.08cm

Packing Accessories

  • M9 Enclosure
  • USB 2.0 cable (4-pin x 4-pin)
  • FireWire 1394a cable (6-pin x 6-pin)
  • Power adapter plus cord, screw package, manual

The M9-DX can be used either as FireWire or USB hard disk. Use the switch at the back to change the mode.

Special Features of the M9 Enclosure

  • Access LED indication
  • Power LED indication
  • Smart power switch - M9 will power up and down in tandem with your Mac Mini automatically (no need to turn on/off power)
  • Smart Interactive cooling system
  • Thermal probe which automatically regulates and varies fan speed according to temperature of the hard drive (Fan Speed settings Low/Auto/High).
  • User configurable fan settings
  • Passive heat sink to radiate heat away from the hard drive
  • Extra large heat sink with direct contact to hard drive (side and top)
  • Concealed ventilation holes
  • USB 2.0 High-Speed 3-Port Hub
  • FireWire 1394a 3-Port Repeater/Hub
  • Switch for external hard disk mode (FireWire or USB)
  • Special micro security slot designed to allow the M9 to be anchored to a desk, via a special security cable

M9-LX 3.5" Hard Drive Enclosure

The M9-LX is a new USB external disk drive enclosure, which also has a built in port replicator. It was created specifically to complement the Mac mini. Features a specially designed passive cooling system.

Bridge Chipset: Prolific 2507
Case Material: High quality aluminum coloured plastic

Features

  • USB 2.0 High-Speed 3-Port Hub
  • Smart interactive cooling system with thermal probe automatically regulating fan speed
  • Massive passive heat sink to radiate heat away from hard drive
  • Smart power switch - M9 will power up and down in tandem with your Mac Mini
  • Special micro security slot designed to allow the M9 to be anchored to a desk

Application Any single 3.5" Parallel ATA Hard Drive (Desktop size) ATA-6 compatible

Interface/Ports

  • USB 2.0 High Speed (USB 1.1) 1 port (4-pin)
  • 1 Port upstream (B Type) / 3 Ports downstream (A Type)

Data Transfer

  • USB 2.0 up to 480 Mbps (60 MB/s)
  • USB 1.1 up to 12 Mbps (1.5 MB/s)

Mac Requirements

  • USB 2.0: Mac OS 10.2 or higher
  • USB 1.1: Mac OS 9.2 or higher (You must update the USB extension to v1.41 or higher between Mac OS 8.6 and Mac OS 9.04)
  • Your hardware device must have proper port or PCI card

Power Supply

  • External Power Adapter universal auto-switching (UL, cUL, CE, TUV approved)
  • Input: AC 100-240V, 1.2A, 50-60 Hz
  • Output: DC +5/1.5A , +12V/1.5A

Enclosure Size: 16.51cm x 16.51cm x 5.08cm

Packing Accessories

  • M9 Enclosure
  • USB 2.0 cable (4-pin x 4-pin)
  • Power adapter plus cord, feet, screw package, manual

Special Features of the M9 Enclosure

  • Access LED indication
  • Power LED indication
  • Smart power switch - M9 will power up and down in tandem with your Mac Mini automatically (no need to turn on/off power)
  • Smart Interactive cooling system
  • Thermal probe which automatically regulates and varies fan speed according to temperature of the hard drive (Fan Speed settings Low/Auto/High).
  • User configurable fan settings
  • Passive heat sink to radiate heat away from the hard drive
  • Extra large heat sink with direct contact to hard drive (side and top)
  • Concealed ventilation holes
  • USB 2.0 High-Speed 3-Port Hub
  • Special micro security slot designed to allow the M9 to be anchored to a desk, via a special security cable

Dragon Drive: 20-100 GB of Storage in Ultra-Slim, Portable Footprint

PR: US Modular, a designer and manufacturer of personal memory and storage products, has announced Dragon Drive - a Bus-powered portable external storage drive system offered in massive sizes of 20-gigabyte to 100-gigabytes. Dragon Drives are some of the tiniest portable auto-detectable combo (USB 2.0 + FireWire) hard drives (2.5" form factor) on the market today. Less than an inch high, these ultra-slim high-performance hard drives are the ideal storage solution for palm-tops, notebooks or desktop PCs - at home, in the office or anywhere in between. Unique in that they require no messy AC power cords (they are 100-percent powered through the two included USB 2.0 cables or FireWire cable), the Dragon Drives maintain a sleek footprint making them the perfect laptop or desktop companion. With both Hi-Speed USB 2.0 and FireWire connections, setup is a snap and data transfer is blazing fast. Dragon Drives will be available in June in size configurations of 20-GB to 100-GB and will be priced at MSRPs of $99 to $279.

Features:

FireWire Features:

  • Compatible with 1394-1995 and 1394A Phys
  • SBP-2 Target Revision 4 Compliant Interface
  • Fully ATA-5 Compliant
  • Supports UDMA5 (ATA100)
  • Supports ATA PIO Modes 0-4, DMA Modes 0-2 and Ultra DMD Modes 0-5
  • ORB Coprocessor to Accelerate Translation of ORBs to ATAPI Commands
  • Supports ORB Chaining for Increased Performance
  • Transfer Rate for High-speed IEEE-1394 Interface: up to 400 Mbps
  • Driver-less: Easy installation support Windows 98SE/Me/2000/XP, Mac OS 8.6 or later without driver

USB 2.0 Features:

  • USB 2.0 Transfer Rates up to 400 Mbps (40 Times Faster Transfer Rate than that of USB 1.1)
  • USB 2.0/IDE Compliant: Integrated USB Transceiver; High Speed (400 Mbit) and Full Speed (12 Mbit)
  • USB Suspend /Resume, Remote Wake Up
  • Easy Installation
  • Windows 98SE; Windows Me/2000/XP, Linux and Mac OS (without driver)
  • ATA PIO modes 0-4: ATA Interface Operation Mode is automatically configured through firmware
  • UDMA modes 0-4 operation

Power Supply:

  • Powerless: Power by FireWire or USB bus power. No external power is required

Dimensions:

  • LxWxH: 133x78x21 mm (cable not included) or 5.2" x 3" x 0.8"
  • Weight: 4.6 ounces
  • Cable Length: Approx. 6 feet (1-FireWire and 2-USB 2.0 cables included)

Support:

  • One year warranty with 24/7 tech support

Dragon Drives will begin shipping in June and will be available nationwide. Vendors interested in carrying US Modular's award-winning lineup of products may contact US Modular directly at sales@usmodular.com.

Dragon Drive

  • 20 GB, $99
  • 40 GB, $149
  • 60 GB, $169
  • 80 GB, $199100 GB, $279

Available: May 2005

QuickerTek 1 Watt Transceiver for AirPort Installations

PR: QuickerTek has announced the 1 Watt Transceiver for Apple AirPort users in Point to Point and MultiPoint wireless systems. This product extends wireless systems with outdoor mounted antennas, allowing wireless connections from building to building, when used with directional antennas. This Transceiver product is at the core of many Point-to-Point wireless systems. The 1 Watt Transceiver is available from stock for $400.

This high powered Transceiver maximizes the wireless power available to Apple AirPort users under Mac OS 9 and Mac OS X as well as the latest 10.4.x "Tiger". It operates on all 2.4 GHz, WiFi systems and supports both 802.11g and 802.11b wireless networks. This Transceiver is designed especially for Apple users and works on all the AirPort enabled Mac desktops including G5 and Mac Mini - like our 500 mW Transceivers. Apple wireless products have RF output of only 30 mW limiting range to well under 100 feet, while this new Transceiver outputs 1 Watt (1000 mW) and easily overcomes coax cable and remote antenna signal transmission losses across far greater distances.

"Since the introduction of our 27 dBm Transceivers, customers have asked about extending wireless range from feet out past a mile," said Rick Estes, president, QuickerTek. "This 1 Watt Transceiver puts the stationary wireless installation within reach of those customers that really need this extended range technology," Estes continued. "If you need more power, distance across outdoor areas, Extreme and Snow Base Station compatibility connecting G5, G5 and Mac Minis, then the 1 Watt Transceiver is your best option," Estes said.

The kit comes with mounting brackets, adapter cable, low loss coax, wall mounted power supply and utility software CD. The Transceiver does not require any installation software.

QuickerTek is a recognized leading innovator of antennas and RF products for Apple desktop and portable computers. QuickerTek products can be purchased at Mac dealers such as Small Dog Electronics, TechnoWarehouse, PowerBook Medic, Mac-Pro, Di-No Computers, LA Computers and many others.

MacWireless Whip AirPort Antennas

Whip AntennaPR: MacWireless whip AirPort antennas are designed to shape and extend the signal from your Mac's wireless card. The adaptable design allows it to work with almost any Macintosh computer that has an AirPort or wireless card. With 4 dBi of gain this whip antenna outshines the competition.

  • Includes clips for permanent or removable mounting to laptop displays, desktop displays, and more.
  • Cable Length: 14" - 30".
  • Dimensions: 6" x .75".
  • Weight: 1 oz.
  • Connector: RP-SMA plus adapter for selected use.
  • 802.11a/b/g Compatible.

Requires an AirPort card, AirPort Extreme card, or other wireless card with an antenna port.

The whip antenna will work with the following Macs:

PowerBooks

  • All G3s
  • All G4s (G4 12" may require modification)

PowerMacs

  • All G3s
  • All G4s (G4 Cube may require modification)
  • All G5s

Factors Affecting Range and Performance of All Wireless Networks

Range estimates are typical and require line of sight. Basically that means you will need a clear unobstructed view of the antenna from the remote point in the link.

Keep in mind that walls and obstacles will limit your operating range and could even prevent you from establishing a link. Signals generally will not penetrate metal or concrete walls. Trees and leaves are obstructions to 802.11 frequencies so they will partially or entirely block the signal. Other factors that will reduce range and affect coverage area include metal studs in walls, concrete fiberboard walls, aluminum siding, foil-backed insulation in the walls or under the siding, pipes and electrical wiring, furniture and sources of interference. The primary source of interference in the home will be the microwave oven. Other sources include other wireless equipment, cordless phones, radio transmitters and other electrical equipment. Due to the increased gain, installing range extender antennas in the presence of interference could actually yield equal or worse range.

These solutions work for the vast majority of our customers. However, due to the numerous factors affecting range and performance we do not guarantee that you will achieve any specific improvement in range for your specific application.

4 dBi Whip Antenna, $49.98

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For deals on laptops, see our Best PowerBook G4 Deals, Best iBook G4 Deals, and Best iBook G3 Deals. For deals on iPods, see our Best iPod Deals.

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