The 'Book Review

Hot MacBook Pro, Long Term iBook, Glossy vs. Matte, PB 1400 'Volvo of Laptops', First 200 GB Notebook Drive, and More

This Week's Mac Notebook News

Compiled by Charles Moore and edited by Dan Knight - 2006.06.09

This Week's MacBook, PowerBook, and iBook News

We posted a MacBook Special Report yesterday. In today's 'Book Review we look at MacBook Pro heat, the longevity of the G3 iBook, glossy vs. matte displays, the solid PowerBook 1400, and an iBook that somehow started a fire.

On the news front, Toshiba has announced a 200 GB notebook hard drive. Two. Hundred. Gigabytes. If only it spun faster than 4,200 rpm.

All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted.

General Apple and Mac desktop news is covered in The Mac News Review. News about Apple's transition to Intel CPUs and other Intel developments is covered in The Macintel Report.

News & Opinion

Tech Tips and Info


Products and Services


Tech Trends

Bargain 'Books

News & Opinion

MacBook Pro 'One Hot Machine' reports:

"At Apple's annual shareholder meeting in April, Steve Jobs waxed lyrical about the MacBook Pro, a laptop powered by an Intel Core Duo chip. 'Everyone wants a MacBook Pro because they are so bitchin',' he said. There is certainly no doubt the laptop is one smokin' hot machine. Literally.

"Since early March, shortly after MacBook Pro's debut, users started posting heat-related complaints to Apple-related Internet forums, claiming the machine was too hot to handle at times....

"Apple also came under fire for not acknowledging the heat-related problem promptly and publicly, along with other complaints that the notebook also makes an irritating whining sound. When a user took his machine apart, and posted an explanation and a link to the MacBook Pro service manual on the Something Awful forums ( in an effort to help others fix their heat issues, Apple served the webmaster of Something Awful with a cease and desist order, demanding that the link to the service manual be removed on grounds of copyright infringement. 'Apple reserves its right to contact your [Something Awful] Internet Service Provider in the event you do not comply with these demands,' said the letter, which the webmaster has posted on the site."

Link: Apple's MacBook Pro Is One Hot Machine

Living with the iBook Long Term

MyMac's Roger Born says:

"This is a Motor Trend-type long term review of my iBook, now four years old and still chugging along well. Cars should have this kind of endurance.

"Four years and counting.

"Well, you know me. I have always wanted the perfect writer's computer. One with a minimal keyboard with 55 full sized keys on a nine inch base, with a comparable wide screen above it, and little else, including any drives. And two pounds, maximum.

"But, there still isn't any such device, and it looks like Apple is not going to make one any time in the foreseeable future.

"Instead, I have lived with a 12 inch iBook on my lap for the past few years. It is nice, sitting in my recliner, in front of the big TV and Stereo in our den, listening, watching, thinking - and writing with such a sweet computer on my lap....

"Originally, this iBook was my wife's, gotten so she could complete her degree. I inherited it after we bought her a new iMac desktop model a year and a half ago. So you can see it had already taken quite a pounding once I got it....

"I said it is a sweet computer, and it is. Easy to hold on your lap, not too hot underneath, with a large enough screen and a great keyboard....

"What is wrong with this iBook?

"Very little."

Editor's note: I agree with Roger. The G3 iBook is a wonderful computer. Goodness still exudes from my well-used 700 MHz G3 iBook, now well into its 4th year of near-flawless service, notwithstanding that this model is statistically the least reliable Mac laptop of the G-series PPC era. cm

Link: Living with the iBook Long Term

Which Screen to Choose: Glossy or Matte?

The Unofficial Apple Weblog's C.K. Sample, III says:

"Long time TUAW commenter Arkowi, tracked down my personal blog, shot me an email and said: 'I see you are picking up a MacBook for your wife. I am ordering a 15" MBP either today or tomorrow. Still not sure about which way to lean on the glossy screen. At first it seemed like a no brainer . . . but some of these reviews seem pretty high on the gloss. . . . It seems the glossy screen might give more a TV appearance which I find appealing (I will be using my MBP as a portable HDTV). However, I will be primarily using it for design work (mostly web based, a few print situations). Just wondered what your take on the gloss was?? Feel free to answer on TUAW if you so desire.'

"Well, Arkowi (and all the others amongst you wrestling with this decision), having both a matte-finish MacBook Pro and a glossy-screened MacBook in the house, I can sum up my observations of the glossy screen in one short sentence: It ain't too shabby."

Link: Which Screen to Choose: Glossy or Matte?

PowerBook 1400: The Volvo of Laptops?

The munchkin wrangler says:

"I tend to use laptops for my writing work, because they allow me a certain freedom of movement. Since I am a big fan of both Apple PowerBooks and vintage computing technology in general, I usually have a few old Macintosh machines around the house.

"A few months ago, I purchased a PowerBook 1400 off eBay for a very reasonable $60. The little 1400 has somewhat of a cult status among PowerBook lovers, being one of the most solid and reliable machines ever to come out of Cupertino. They also have one of the best keyboards ever put on a portable computer . . . not quite up to the standard of the IBM Model M desktop keyboard, but far better than anything put on any laptop made after 1998 or so. When you type a lot, your choice of keyboard becomes a deciding factor when it comes to hardware decisions, so it's no surprise to me that the PB 1400 is a sought-after machine among writers."

Link: The Volvo of Laptops?

iBook Starts Fire

TUAW's David Chartier reports:

"We hear about the occasional battery recall, and there are always the complaints that computers are getting too hot, but things went to a whole new level for a family in Minnesota. As WCCO in the Twin Cities reports, an 11 year-old boy set a running iBook down on the carpet and left the room. His mother states that they heard a popping noise, saw that the iBook had started melting the carpet and the room was filling with smoke. They quickly carried the iBook outside and remembered to bring their camera along for the show as the iBook, you can see, literally caught fire (WCCO has a video and more images)."

Link: iBook Battery Catches Fire

Sticky Space Bar on MacBook Pro

The Apple Core's Jason D. O'Grady says:

"As you can probably guess I use my MacBook Pro all the time. It's my primary machine and blogging for ZD Net, editing the PowerPage, email and IM keep me pretty busy. A couple of weeks back my MBP keyboard started acting a little wonky.

"I use the MacBook Pro's built-in keyboard about 75 percent of the time (the other 25 percent of the time I use an Apple Bluetooth keyboard) and about three weeks ago the space bar started sticking. It wouldn't stick entirely, but instead would come up very slowly after being pressed. While not a problem initially, it started coming up slower and slower and often wouldn't return to the 'unpressed' position by the time I needed to use it again resulting in a lot of sentences withoutspacesinthem."

Link: MacBook Pro Sticky Space Bar

Toshiba Extends 2.5" Hard Drive to 200 GB Capacity

PR: Toshiba Storage Device Division (SDD), the industry pioneer in small form factor hard disk drives (HDDs), has introduced a 200 GB 2.5" HDD based on advanced Perpendicular Magnetic Recording (PMR) technology. Toshiba's second-generation PMR offering features the world's highest areal density at 178.8 gigabits per square inch and the highest capacity in the standard 9.5mm mobile PC format.

The 200 GB dual-platter MK2035GSS is Toshiba's first PMR drive to incorporate tunnel magnetoresistive recording (TMR) head technology. Toshiba's new 2.5" HDD is light weight at 98 grams and incorporates the Serial ATA (SATA) II interface with native command queuing, enabling faster data transfer rates and improved technical performance.

"As a leading partner for mobile PC manufacturers, we've listened to our customers' needs for high-capacity storage in a small form factor to enable the advanced multimedia applications and enriched usage experience that consumers are demanding today," said Scott Maccabe, vice president and general manager, Toshiba SDD. "Our technology innovation in PMR has laid the foundation for delivering the industry's highest capacity and areal density in the standard mobile drive form factor. It's a win-win combination for mobile PC manufacturers who want to differentiate their offerings with features that attract high-end consumers."

Using Toshiba's 200 GB 2.5" HDD, mobile PC manufacturers can create value with end consumers by providing enough capacity for gaming, video, music and other multimedia applications, positioning these mobile PCs as viable desktop replacement options.

Toshiba is the industry leader in mobile HDD shipments (2.5 inch or smaller form factors) with a 29 percent market share, according to research firm IDC. The company has held that position since Q3 of 2005.

Toshiba will start mass production for the 2.5" 200 GB MK2035GSS HDD in August 2006. The company will showcase the new HDD at Computex in Taipei, Taiwan, June 6-10, 2006, in booth #B624.

Product Specifications - Model no. MK2035GSS

  • Capacity (Formatted): 200 GB
  • No. of platters: 2
  • No. of heads: 4
  • Areal Density: 277.1 Mbit/mm2 (178.8 Gbit/in2)
  • Average seek time: 12 msec
  • Data transfer rate: Serial ATA II 1.2/150 MB/s
  • Rotational speed: 4,200 rpm
  • Buffer memory: 8 MB
  • Interface: ATA-7
  • External dimensions: (WxDxH; mm) 69.85 x 100.0 x 9.5
  • Weight: 98g
  • Energy consumption efficiency: 0.00335 W/GB
  • Shock resistance:
    • Operating 3,185 m/s2 (325G, 2 msec)
    • Nonoperating 8,330 m/s2 (850G, 1 msec)
Link: Toshiba

Tech Tips and Info

Calibrating Your 'Books Battery for Best Performance

An updated Apple Knowledge Base article says:

"You can calibrate your iBook, PowerBook, MacBook or MacBook Pro computer's lithium ion battery for best performance.

"The battery has an internal microprocessor that provides an estimate of the amount of energy in the battery as it charges and discharges. The battery needs to be recalibrated from time to time to keep the onscreen battery time and percent display accurate. With all iBooks and PowerBook G4 computers except the aluminum PowerBook G4 (15-inch Double-Layer SD), you should perform this procedure when you first use your computer and then every few months thereafter."

The procedure for Intel-based 'Books is somewhat different from PPCs.

Link: Calibrating Your Computer's Battery for Best Performance


17" MacBook Pro 'Comes Up a Bit Short'

CNET's Michelle Thatcher reports:

"Following on the heels of the 15.4-inch MacBook Pro and replacing the 17-inch PowerBook G4, the 17-inch MacBook Pro delivers many of the same beloved features as its little sibling, such as a scrolling track pad, the Sudden Motion Sensor, and an excellent software package, and adds a huge, bright 17-inch display that's great for graphics work. Better yet, our fully loaded test configuration powered through most of CNET Labs' performance tests, exhibiting only a few of the growing pains encountered by other Intel-based Apple laptops and desktops, such as the iMac Core Duo. Of course, such performance doesn't come cheap: the 17-inch MacBook Pro's default configuration costs $2,799 (upgrades on our review unit brought the price up to $3,099). But for graphics professionals and other Mac users who have money to spare, the 17-inch MacBook Pro is a dream....

"The 17-inch MacBook Pro offers a decent selection of ports and connections, though it comes up a bit short of what you'll find on a similarly sized PC laptop, including the Inspiron E1705....

"CNET Labs compared the 17-inch MacBook Pro against a number of older Apple laptops running the PowerPC processor as well as other Core Duo-based Macs. Unsurprisingly, the MacBook Pro trailed behind a PowerBook G4 when running Sorenson Squeeze, which requires the Rosetta translation program to run on the new chipset. But its ample amount of RAM and quick hard drive helped it power through our Photoshop CS test, in spite of Rosetta."

Link: Apple MacBook Pro (17-inch)

17" MacBook Pro the Cadillac Escalade of Notebook Computing

The Washington Times' Mark Kellner says:

"Apple Computer's 17-inch MacBook Pro is the 'who's-your-daddy' version of notebook computing, a digital Cadillac Escalade running the industry's coolest operating system....

"If you edit videos or photographs on the run, this might be an ideal machine. If I wanted an ultracool desktop-replacement notebook that would, 50 weeks of the year, sit on one desk alone, this would be tempting: the 17-inch screen is really, really nice.

"Those are exceptional cases, however. Most of us buying Mac notebooks - or any notebooks, for that matter - are looking for computers that are relatively easy to take with us on the road, something we can throw into a bag and run with, if running is required.

"For those needs, the 13-inch MacBook (no 'Pro'), recently introduced but not yet reviewed here, might well be an option. For "professional" users who want more graphics power, the 15-inch MacBook Pro should do nicely, and will be easier to tote...."

Link: Laptop Set for Power Duty

Products and Services

Fabrix Laptop Sleeves

FabrixPR: Fabrix cases add colours to life by harnessing fashionable materials. Each fabrix case is unique as they are individually handmade and hence you wouldn't be able to find an exact duplicate anywhere in the world. Each fabrix case is sewn to precision to fit the specific dimensions of each intended device, unlike mass-produced cases which come in generalised sizings, fabrix cases are constructed to fit specifically for your device, meaning no more of your devices swimming in excessively large cases. Would you rather own a "one-of-the-many-made" or a "specially-made-for-you" case ?

Each fabrix case is individually handcraft to fit the specific dimensions of each intended device. The interior is lined with inner paddings to offer optimum protection for your precious devices, especially against light bumps and knocks.

Different designs might varies slightly in overall level of protection and thickness, depending on the material used in the design. Certain materials are slightly tougher by nature and hence will be able to offer a higher level of protection for your devices.

Fabrix cases are generally water-resistant but not waterproof. We have already factored in such considerations prior to our materials selection process and each material that we use are fairly water resistant.

Fabrix cases are fully constructed using fabrics, just like the clothes we wear. Hence, they are washable. However, frequent washing might cause the fitting and shape of the case to change overtime. It is recommended that fabrix cases be washed with very mild soap, using lukewarm water and dried naturally so as to retain its original form. After washing and drying, place the fabrix case on a flat surface and put a piece of paper on top of it before ironing gently. That should get your fabrix case back into shape.


  • Cushioned with high-grade internal quilted paddings that provides your laptops the optimum level of protection against scratches, light bumps and knocks, yet not compromising on the size and form factor.
  • Hand sewn to precise dimensions to fit each laptop perfectly unlike mass produced laptop cases which comes in generic sizings.
  • Available in Horizontal or Vertical Loading orientations.
  • Add-on handles are available as well (Additional charges apply).

FabrixAvailable in the following designs:

Models to fit:

  • 12" PowerBook G4
  • 12" iBook G4
  • 13" MacBook
  • 15" PowerBook G4
  • 15" MacBook Pro

Price range: $32.90 - $35.90

Horizontal & Vertical Orientation

Add-on options at additional charge

  • Pocket: $2.00 (small cases), $5.00 (laptop cases)
  • Velcro strap: $1.00 (small cases), $3.00 (laptop cases)
  • Handles: $6.00 (short handles), $7.00 (long handles)

Shipping charges are priced at $9.00 per case

Link: Fabrix Cases

Kensington Introduces 20 New Notebook Accessories

PR: Kensington has announced the introduction of 20 new products for the mobile consumer just in time for Dads, Grads and Back to School consumer buying season. The new products include four additions to Kensington's market leading MicroSaver line of notebook locks, the most expansive launch of notebook cases in Kensington's history, and new mice, presenters and a video capable universal notebook dock.

Have Notebook, Will Travel

According to analysts, notebook PCs are expected to grow 30% in 2006 with sales reaching 70 million units worldwide. This growth is an indication that notebook computers have now become for many an essential productivity tool, whether for work or personal use. According to a recent survey commissioned by Kensington, nearly 70% of men and nearly 60% of women surveyed said that they were either very likely or somewhat likely to take their notebook computer with them on vacation.

"We're delighted to be announcing a wide range of products that help our customers better enjoy their mobile lifestyles," said Rob Humphrey, Director of Marketing, Kensington. "Notebook computers have become indispensable to our lives, and the new Kensington products make their notebook experience more enjoyable, productive and secure."

Kensington accessories have wide appeal for mobile users who need to have ultimate productivity while on the go. Kensington answers this need with a variety of products that allow for the best computing experience:

MicroSaver Notebook Locks

Through recent high profile media reports many consumers have become increasingly aware of the susceptibility of their notebook PCs to theft. What many don't know is that every brand name notebook PC has a built-in Kensington security slot to enable theft deterrence and prevention. Long the leader in physical notebook security, Kensington is introducing four new MicroSaver locks with improved locking mechanisms, stronger steel cables, superior design and enhanced styling. The new locks resist lock tampering and theft attempt. The complete line of Kensington notebook locks include both keyed and combination solutions, and are available now at suggested retail prices (SRP) of $39.99 to $69.99.

Contour Notebook Carrying Cases

Kensington's consumer survey also showed that Style and Comfort were the most important criteria for selecting computer carrying cases. Roughly 40% of men and women viewed Style and Comfort each as the most important purchasing criteria. Kensington is introducing nine new Contour cases that are exclusively endorsed by the American Chiropractic Association (ACA). Combining a proprietary contoured panel and intelligent weight distribution system, these cases shift their weight to the user's stronger, load-bearing muscles, effectively lightening the load and reducing muscle fatigue by up to thirty-five percent (35%).(1) Designed to accommodate the growing number of notebook users, the cases target four distinct market segments - the frequent business traveler, the daily commuter, the urban gadget lover, and the light traveler. These cases are available June 15 and range in SRP from $29.99 to $99.99.

Notebook Expansion Dock with Video

Expanding its notebook dock line, Kensington is introducing the Notebook Expansion Dock with Video, which uses powerful port replication technology to utilize a single USB port to connect your notebook to USB peripherals, speakers, keyboards and mice, and even runs 17" and 19" desktop monitors at native display resolutions with high-fidelity image quality. A unique wedge design lifts the notebook and increasing airflow to aid cooling. This product is available now at $179.99 SRP.

New Mice and Wireless Presenters

Expanding its line of award winning mice, Kensington is introducing three new mice: Ci60 Wireless Optical Mouse, Ci20 Optical Mouse Pro, and Si300 Laser Mouse.

The Ci60 Wireless Optical Mouse offers wireless convenience while combining the comfort of soft rubberized grips and innovative right-handed design with the precision and accuracy of DiamondEye optical technology. With five programmable buttons that can be customized to streamline important tasks such as launching applications or navigating Web sites, these mice are the perfect combination of comfort, control, and convenience.

The Ci20 Optical Mouse combines the comfort of soft rubberized grips and innovative right-handed design with the precision and accuracy of DiamondEye optical technology. With five programmable buttons that can be customized to streamline important tasks such as launching applications or navigating Web sites, these mice are the perfect combination of comfort, control, and convenience.

The Si300 Laser Mouse offers precise laser tracking, 4-way tilt-scroll wheel, flexible rubber grips for excellent comfort and control and is designed for both left and right-handed users.

Kensington looks to extend its market leading position in wireless presenters with the introduction of two new products, the Wireless Presenter with Laser Pointer and the Wireless Presenter. These presenters empower users to control their presentation anywhere in the room - up to 50 feet away. They are conveniently portable and easy-to-use, with 2.4 GHz wireless technology for secure and reliable performance along with smart power management. Additionally, the wireless USB receiver stores inside the palm-sized controller for carrying convenience and acts as the on/off switch. The wireless presenters are designed to fit comfortably in the palm of your hand.

All of these products are available June 15 and range in price from $24.99 to $59.99 SRP.

New iPod Accessory

Expanding its iPod accessory line, Kensington is introducing the 4-in 1-Car Charger for iPod. Driving and your iPod naturally go together. Keep the sound moving with the Kensington 4-in-1 Car Charger for iPod that powers click wheel iPods, including iPod nano and iPod with video. A pass-through connector keeps FM Transmitters on, even while charging your iPod or other USB devices.

Kensington products are available at a variety of nationwide retail and online stores including Circuit City, CompUSA, OfficeMax, Staples, Apple Stores, Fry's Electronics, Micro Center, CDW, Dell,,, and

Link: Kensington


coconutBattery 2.5b Laptop Battery Monitor

PR: coconutBattery v2.x is completely rewritten . . . preferences menu . . . dashboard widget . . . more languages(coming soon) . . . many groundbreaking new features are planned for the next versions . . . and it's still freeware(but donations are more than welcome)

coconutBattery is a tool that reads out the data of your notebook-battery (iBook/PowerBook). It gives you live feedback, what's going on in your battery (not only a snapshot like other tools).

It shows the current charge of your battery as well as the current maximum capacity related to its original. If coconutBattery detects that you have connected the wrong charger (i.e. an iBook charger plugged in a PowerBook) it will warn you! That's a cool feature!

Of course you are able to save the current maximum capacity of your battery - with just one click! coconutBattery uses Apple's new and really powerful technology named "CoreData" to realize that.

Finally coconutBattery calculates the age of your Mac exactly! So you can derive the age of your battery. And last but not least: coconutBattery is Universal Binary (you can run it on Intel-Macs! - cool!) and it is complete localizable!

Many localizations are ready to start but still need some bugfixes.

If you want to help translating coconutBattery to your language, just write me an email - but you should wait these few days until I know what localizations needs a update.

By the way: The really really cool and absolutely coconut-flavoured icon was created by - really good job! Check out the webpage.

New in version 2.5b

  • Runs on PPC Macs, MacBooks and MacBook Pros

New in version 2.3:

  • Universal binary for MacBook Pro

New in version 2.2:

  • widget bugfixes and improvements,
  • new localizations (Finnish, Spanish, French, German),
  • minor bugfixes

System requirements:

  • Mac OS 10.4.3 (Tiger)
  • An Apple notebook (PowerBook or iBook)


Link: coconutBattery

SideTrack Trackpad Driver Provides Multibutton Control

PR: SideTrack is a replacement driver for Apple PowerBook and iBook trackpads. With SideTrack installed, your standard trackpad becomes a powerful multibutton scrolling mouse.

Leave your external mouse at home and take full control over your trackpad:

  • Vertical scrolling at left or right edge of pad.
  • Horizontal scrolling at top or bottom edge of pad.
  • Map hardware button to left or right click.
  • Map trackpad taps to no action, left click, left click drag (with or without drag lock), or right click.
  • Map trackpad corner taps to mouse buttons 1-6 or simulated keystrokes.
  • Extensive control over accidental input filtering.

SideTrack is multiuser aware and fully compatible with MacOS X fast user switching (FUS). Every user on your laptop can have different settings depending on their needs.

Extended control over the trackpad button and tap gestures. Use trackpad taps for left click, drag gestures, or right click. Complete scroll wheel mouse emulation with customizable scrolling speed. Place your scroll zones on either side of the pad, or both sides simultaneously.

Turn the corners of your trackpad into independent tap actions. Use the corner zones to emulate up to a 6 button mouse or generate custom keystrokes. Customize SideTrack's sensitivity and accuracy. Calibrate to your own trackpad style and adjust filtering to reduce accidental taps while typing. Choose from several mouse acceleration options.

System Requirements

  • Apple PowerBook or iBook (for specific supported PowerBook models see the FAQ)
  • MacOS X 10.2 (Jaguar), MacOS X 10.3 (Panther), or MacOS X 10.4 (Tiger) Leave your external mouse at home and take full control over your trackpad:
  • Vertical scrolling at left or right edge of pad.
  • Horizontal scrolling at top or bottom edge of pad.
  • Map hardware button to left or right click. Map trackpad taps to no action, left click, left click drag (with or without drag lock), or right click.
  • Map trackpad corner taps to mouse buttons 1-6 or simulated keystrokes.
  • Extensive control over accidental input filtering.

New in version 1.4.1:

  • [BUG] Fix wake from sleep USB reset on 2005 iBook G4 models.

New in version 1.4:

  • [FEATURE] Support MacBook and MacBook Pro models (Universal Binary).
  • [BUG] Fix USB threading on multiprocessor/multicore kernel.
  • [BUG] Better auto adjust of "keep moving" edge size and corner size on wide pad models (17" PowerBook, 13" MacBook, 15" MacBook Pro).

System requirements: Mac OS X 10.2 or later.

System support: PPC

$15 Shareware

Link: SideTrack

iScroll2 Provides Two-Finger-Scrolling for pre-2005 AlBooks, G4 iBooks

PR: iScroll2 is a modified trackpad driver that adds two-finger scrolling capabilities to supported pre-2005 PowerBooks and iBooks on OS X 10.3 and up.

iScroll2 is a modified trackpad driver that adds two-finger scrolling capabilities to supported pre-2005 PowerBooks and iBooks on OS X 10.3 and up.

Supported models include most aluminum PowerBooks introduced from 2003 to 2004 as well as all G4 iBooks.

Note: Models that have two-finger scrolling already built-in are not supported! These use a completely different, USB-based trackpad, the driver or which is not available as open source.

iScroll2 is based on Apple's AppleADBMouse-209.0.10 driver for the ADB-based trackpads found on older models, which is available as part of the publicly released Darwin source code (and covered by the APSL). The code added for supporting two-finger scrolling was written from scratch.

New in version 0.26:

  • settings daemon overhaul
  • reload settings whenever driver is reloaded
  • hopefully, this fixes update the "lost settings after sleep" issue many users were experiencing previously

System requirements: Mac OS X 10.3 or later

Models that are known not to be supported include all G3 and Titanium PowerBooks, the very first 12" PowerBook model, all G3 iBooks, and all newer machines that come with two-finger-scrolling built-in: The trackpads of the older machines simply lack two-finger detection capabilities completely, whereas the models that have scrolling built-in use a completely different, USB-based trackpad, the driver for which is not available as open source.

Version 0.25 seems to work just fine under 10.4.1

System support: PPC


Link: iScroll2

Tech Trends

Ultraportables Poised to Change Laptop Landscape

eWeek's Anne Chen says:

"eWeek Labs: A sneak peek suggests ultraportables from HP and Lenovo may challenge earlier thin notebook offerings."

Link: New Laptops Are Poised to Change the Laptop Landscape

Bargain 'Books

Bargain 'Books are used unless otherwise indicated. New and refurbished units have a one-year Apple warranty and are eligible for AppleCare.

There are two different versions of WallStreet running at 233 MHz, the cacheless MainStreet version and the later Series II with a level 2 cache. It's not always possible to determine from the vendor's listing which is being offered, so we've included links within this paragraph to the two models. The same goes for the PowerBook G4/667 (VGA) and G4/667 (DVI), the titanium vs. aluminum 15" PowerBook G4 at 1 GHz, and 1.25 GHz to 1.5 GHz 15" PowerBooks.

PowerBook and iBook profiles linked in our Portable Mac Index.


TechRestore is offering a $25 discount to The 'Book Review readers off any PowerBook or iBook in stock. Just enter the code CWM during checkout when ordering online. The coupon code is valid from now through 12/31/2007.

  • used 12" iBook G3/900, 256/40/Combo, $489.99
  • used 14" iBook G3/800, 256/30/Combo, $499.99
  • used 12" iBook G4/800, 256/30/Combo, $579.99

Baucom Computers

  • used 12" PowerBook Kanga G3/250, 160/5/CD, floppy, $155
  • used 12" iBook G3/500, 256/15/CD, $259
  • used 12" iBook G3/700, 256/20/CD, $335
  • used 15" PowerBook G4/667 VGA, 256/20/Combo, $575

Wegener Media

  • used 15" titanium PowerBook G4/1 GHz, 256/60/Combo, $699.99
  • Upgrade to a SuperDrive installed - $79.99
  • Upgrade to a 8x SuperDrive installed - $139.99
  • Upgrade TO 1 GB of RAM - $189.99
  • Upgrade TO 512 MB of RAM -$59.50
  • Upgrade to 80 GB HDD - $109.50
  • Upgrade to 100 GB HDD - $169.50
  • Add an Airport Wireless card - $129.99
  • PCMCIA 108 Mbps extreme wireless card - $44.99

Apple Store

  • refurb 15" PowerBook G4/1.33 GHz, 256/60/Combo, APX, $1,299
  • refurb 15" PowerBook G4/1.5 GHz, 512/80/SuperDrive, APX, $1,499
  • refurb 17" PowerBook G4/1.5 GHz, 512/80/SuperDrive, APX, $1,699

For more deals on current or recently discontinued models, see our best 15" MacBook Pro deals, our best 17" MacBook Pro deals, 12" PowerBook G4 deals, 15" aluminum PowerBook G4 deals, 17" PowerBook G4 deals, titanium PowerBook G4 deals, iBook G4 deals, PowerBook G3 deals, and iBook G3 deals.

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