Charles Moore's Mailbag

A Useful Eudora Feature, FireWire Ports in Apple Displays, Having Enough RAM, and More

Charles Moore - 2009.10.21 - Tip Jar

  1. Useful Eudora Feature
  2. FireWire Ports in Apple Displays
  3. The Importance of Having Enough RAM
  4. Avoid QuickPADs
  5. If There Was Anyone Who Would Know...
  6. PC Swap List

Useful Eudora Feature

Hi Charles,

Love your articles - clear, to the point, and full of common sense - or maybe it is just that I tend to agree with the vast majority of them :)

Regarding a Eudora replacement, I've read some of your articles regarding Eudora 8 and Thunderbird, but there is one major reason that I have not switched from Eudora 6.2.4 (running on an iMac under 10.5.7 - and for me it continues to run flawlessly, however, the day will come).

This reason is that I do not keep any data on my computers (iMac at home, iMac at the school where I teach, and a MacBook). Instead, for the past 10+ years, I have kept all of my data on external media, most recently a portable hard drive. I like this arrangement, because it is easy to back up (I just clone the entire drive) and I like being able to take my data with me in a small, very portable package. Furthermore, it allows me to keep my data disconnected from the Internet when, for example, I fire up Parallels and run Windows (can't be too careful in that world!).

One of the wonderful things about Eudora is how you can keep your Eudora folder on a portable drive and then just launch the appropriate settings file from that folder (each setting represents a different email account e.g. Gmail, my school account etc.). I keep a copy of the Eudora app on all of my computers so I can launch each setting's file from whichever computer I am using. As a result, I can keep all of my Eudora data (address book, settings, archived email that goes back 15 years, etc.) all on my portable drive, but I can access it wherever I go.

Unlike Eudora, it seems like most modern mail programs tie you to the computer where that application lives. For laptop users, this is not a major issue - until you have to move to another machine.

Do you know if Eudora 8 works in the same manner as classic Eudora, i.e. the data components of the program are stored in a folder that you can store on external media and run from that device.

I hope I have explained myself clearly! Look forward to hearing from you!


Hi Bob,

Thanks for the kind words about my scribbling!

I'm still using Eudora 6.2.4 on my G4 PowerBook running OS X 10.5.8, and on my Pismo running OS X 10.4.11.

I'm also very familiar with using the single Eudora Folder/multiple Settings file launch mode from back in the days when I was still alternating back and forth between OS 9 and OS X - and using the same Eudora Folder for both.

Eudora 8 uses the Thunderbird Folder in your Home Folder > Library Folder for user settings and message archive storage. I haven't tried it, but I'm doubtful that the old method of multiple Settings files we enjoy(ed) with classic Eudora would work. The nearest analog to a Settings File I can find in my Thunderbird Folder is called "h9e8dwk9.default" - not encouraging!

If anyone has tried this and can report results, I'd be interested in hearing too.

The thing is, however, that Eudora 8 is an entirely different animal from classic Eudora, other than some carryover in features and icon appearance. It's essentially Thunderbird with a Eudora skin.


Eudora mailbox listCharles,

Thanks for the reply!

Computer technology generally seems to move ahead, but it sure is irritating when a wonderful feature that one has grown to depend on is "lost" in the march forward.

I too still have a Pismo that works great - it may one day be the computer that my Eudora archives live on for posterity's sake after I have been forced (kicking and screaming) to move to another email client.

P.S. I've attached a picture of my email life and history!!!!!


FireWire Ports in Apple Displays

From Brian:

Good morning Charles,

You wrote:

"The extra FireWire port on your monitor intrigues me. I wonder if it would be a 'backdoor' way to add FireWire support to my FireWire-less Unibody MacBook? I've never hear anyone mention trying that workaround, so perhaps it wouldn't work."

I have to admit, that is a really good question. As soon as I had time this weekend, I pulled out an old LaCie CD-RW drive and plugged it in to my new display with a FW cable. Alas, it did not work as hoped. There are three connector cables going to the monitor: one DVI video adapter, one USB, and one FireWire. In order to get the FW ports on the back of the monitor to work, you have to plug in the third of the connector cables (the FW one) to your laptop. In other words, if your laptop does not have FW built in, this will not work as a work around. Sorry for the let down.


Hi Brian,

Thanks so much for checking this out. As I noted, I was hopeful but it wasn't a very lively hope.


The Importance of Having Enough RAM

From Felix:


Thanks for taking the time to respond.

My Pismo with the Belkin card has a full gig of memory, but it still tends to show some capriciousness when it comes to staying connected. I remember having used before one of those Dell cards, 1300 or 1360 or something, without a single moment of grief. Why I let go of that sweet little card is beyond me (quite literally; I cannot recall what I did with it. Most likely swapped it for other Mac stuff).

One way or the other, life has taught me that getting as much RAM as possible for a computer one uses frequently is always worth the investment. In the case of a 10-year-old machine, it may look on one hand like money down the drain; on the other, if one is bound to spend time using it, especially for work, one should strive to make that time as smooth and productive as possible. Plus, Pismos are a joy to use. I completely agree with you that polycarbonate is more pleasant to the touch than metal, and that the Pismo's keyboard, and the WallStreet's, remain unsurpassed in quality and comfort to this day. They are, IMHO, the perfect machines for writing - which, in the end, does not require a lot of RAM... ;-)

Keep up the good work.


Hi Felix,

Thanks for the follow-up.

Yes, I'm a believer in having lots of RAM. I have 4 GB in my MacBook and 1.5 GB in my PowerBook. I should try to find another 512 MB stick for the Pismo.

By the way, I've discovered that turning off AirPort when I'm not doing anything in particular online and then reactivating it when I need it is a workaround that helps diminish the connection dropouts.


Avoid QuickPADs

From Kelly:

Dear Charles,

Thank you ever so much for replying. I can only apologise for my late reply, but it is due to health reasons. You have my apologies.

If anyone else asks about the QuickPAD, please recommend they avoid it like the plague. They were made faulty but sold as fine, and their company is a nightmare to deal with. Two of them failed with IrDA, PS/2, the lot. AlphaSmart is so much more helpful.

By the way, I love Low End Mac. I am playing around with an iMac G3, which is a darling. I've never ever replaced RAM before, but I've learned how to on this, and your site helped me get the confidence to do it. And it goes like the clappers on Tiger ;) .

Anyway, thank you for your reply, and keep up the good work.


If There Was Anyone Who Would Know...

From Anthony:

Dear Charles,

Let me preface this email by emphasizing two points;

  1. I'm not into cob-job computer maintenance and
  2. that goes triple for Macs.

As you know, I'm still recuperating from that car wreck in 2001 and so my wife has had to "fill-in" as my purchasing agent at the Mac Store. Unofficially, and off the record, is there a way that OS X 10.3.9 to upgrade it to 10.5.4? Unfortunately, we've already opened it!

I can see how the confusion would arise, because it has a sticker on it that says "'New Version 10.5.4". <sigh>,

Aarrrrgggghhh !!!!


P.S. Can you tell I'm pleading for some work around?? My hardware stats are fine.

Hi Anthony,

If I'm reading you correctly, you've purchased a Mac OS X 10.5 upgrade disk of some sort?

A regular OS X 10.5 install disk would have no problem taking you from 10.3.9 to 10.5, but I'm not quite sure what you've got there. An upgrade disk for a specific computer is not likely to work.


Editor's note: Mac OS X Upgrade discs have always required that the immediately previous version of OS X be installed, 10.6 being the huge exception. Without Tiger, Anthony is out of luck. dk

PC Swap List

From Scott:

Hey Dan, Charles,

Have you guys considered creating a separate swap list specifically for PC stuff? I say separate because I know you don't allow PC stuff to be listed on the LEM Swap List. I notice there aren't any PC swap lists out there, or at least I can't find any. Perhaps your readers know of one?


Hi Scott,

I'll hand this off to Dan, as he's the webmaster.

Sounds like a good idea to me.


Scott and Charles,

Thanks to Scott's suggestion, we launched such a group on October 13, also announcing it on LEM Swap. The group has over 80 members to date and two dozen postings - including several items that are free for the cost of shipping (or local pickup).


Go to Charles Moore's Mailbag index.

Join us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter or Google+, or subscribe to our RSS news feed

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 and a columnist at If you find his articles helpful, please consider making a donation to his tip jar.

Links for the Day

Recent Content

About LEM Support Usage Privacy Contact

Follow Low End Mac on Twitter
Join Low End Mac on Facebook

Page not found | Low End Mac

Well this is somewhat embarrassing, isn’t it?

It seems we can’t find what you’re looking for. Perhaps searching, or one of the links below, can help.

Most Used Categories


Try looking in the monthly archives. :)

Page not found | Low End Mac

Well this is somewhat embarrassing, isn’t it?

It seems we can’t find what you’re looking for. Perhaps searching, or one of the links below, can help.

Most Used Categories


Try looking in the monthly archives. :)

Favorite Sites

Cult of Mac
Shrine of Apple
The Mac Observer
Accelerate Your Mac
The Vintage Mac Museum
Deal Brothers
Mac Driver Museum
JAG's House
System 6 Heaven
System 7 Today
the pickle's Low-End Mac FAQ

The iTunes Store
PC Connection Express
Macgo Blu-ray Player
Parallels Desktop for Mac

Low End Mac's store


Well this is somewhat embarrassing, isn’t it?

It seems we can’t find what you’re looking for. Perhaps searching, or one of the links below, can help.

Most Used Categories


Try looking in the monthly archives. :)

at BackBeat Media (646-546-5194). This number is for advertising only.

Open Link