First Day with Panther

The first project after coming home last night is to install the new Mac OS X "Panther" onto my 12" iBook. The box came with some installation instructions, license agreements, and 4 CDs. 3 of them are Panther and its applications, and there is an extra disc for Xcode. AUD$199 for a full product is not that bad, consider the whole development suite is included. Surely I don't see Microsoft including their Visual Studio with their Windows XP product.

I choose a complete erase and install. The installation can archive the old system for you before installation, but I've already backed it up on the server before I start. Installation is easy - popping in the CD and just follow the instruction. I opt to install the X11 system, and remove all languages other than English, which were installed by default. After 2 reboots, filling out the registration details, I am presented with the Panther desktop.

There are many small changes here and there that make me smile. The new Expose is so cool, especially the F9 key that shows all the windows. Rotating between applications using Apple-Tab now shows all the running apps in a window in the centre of the screen, rather than using the confusing dock. Finding has huge improvement, and using network drive is so much easier now - no need to mount as there is now an automounter running that mount things automatically when you browse.

Fast user switch has also been very useful. I am sharing this iBook with Vivian a lot, and everytime I have to log out for her to log back in. Now we can both enjoy the rotating cube effect when we switch users.

I am still trying to get things set up. Fink no longer works, and it seems I need to get 0.6. Maybe I can give Darwinport a try this time. OpenOffice.org 1.0.3 works right out of box (well, I mean right after I've installed it). Psi, the Jabber client that I am currently using, works fine, except that the UI is mis-aligned in some places. There are still quite a few apps that I need to reinstall.

However, there are some problems that I've already encountered so far. I have already got a kernel panic when I tried to manually connect to my WiFi network - the grayed screen with multiple languages asking me to restart the iBook can be quite scary. Here's a list of glitches that I've experienced:

  • Connecting to a self-signed secure IMAP server will prompt me with warning message. According to the help, I can click on 'Show Certificate', drag the certificate to desktop, and then install that certificate to permanently accept that certificate. However, the whole Mail.app hung when I tried to drag the certificate. Very annoying. At the end, I get around it by manually installing the CA's certificate into x509 archive inside keychains.
  • If I have used auto mounted network shares, when the computer is switched to someone else with the fast user switching, that person cannot auto-mount that share. However, the user can still manually mount the drive onto desktop.

Still discovering...