eMac Attack

April 13, 2004

Apple has updated the eMac, now offering a 1.25 GHz G4 at an entry level price ($799 if you don’t want the Superdrive, cheaper still with an educational discount).

Amazingly enough, I’m drooling…

The theme around here this week is “Thank God for the eMac.”

I’d picked one up a year ago for a project which never materialized (the client was a Mac shop, and looking good on Safari was an important point).  They left me holding the bag (unpaid) for the first cut of the site, and I kind of stuck the eMac (which I’d purchased out of my own pocket) in the corner in disgust.  It wasn’t a bad machine, but at 700 MHz / 40 gig, it was underpowered and—worst of all—lacked the elegant over-engineering of the higher priced models. It was a Ford, not a Lincoln.

Fast-forward to this week—my trusty (or not-so, perhaps, this week) PowerBook is on its way back to the mothership to get its display fixed, and I was faced with shuffling all of my day-to-day stuff back over to the high-steroid XP box I have for a desktop.  Before I did, however, I took the bootable backup of my PowerBook that I’ve been religiously keeping up-to-date (and which I updated again before shipping off the PowerBook), dragged the eMac out of the corner, and option-booted it from the external drive. 

Bada-bing!  It comes up, runs, and for the most part, thinks it’s my PowerBook.  The only things that have needed tweaking were pairing my Bluetooth devices, and changing the path for all of the local site stores used by Dreamweaver (which could have handled things more gracefully).

It’s a bit (well, quite a bit) slower than my PowerBook, but it avoids the shuffle, and when the PowerBook gets back, I’ll just Carbon Copy Clone the backup to the internal drive, and I’ll be good to go.

I’m just impressed that it works so smoothly—trying the same thing in a Windows environment wouldn’t work nearly as well.

I’ve been kind of idly looking at some of the various eMac hack sites and thinking about tweaking some more juice out of the thing, but maybe a better idea would be to find a few extra dollars and get one of the new ones. 

Hmmm….  Maybe if I sent this one to Nebraska I could actually get my father to try using a computer…


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