Apple improves Boot Camp

When I got rid of my 13" MacBook last month, I described the MacBook/Boot Camp shortcomings that lead to this decision, explaining that they would probably get fixed in the Leopard release early next year, but I wasn't willing to wait that long. Well, it looks like a lot of the complaints I had have been fixed wit the release of Boot Camp 1.1.

Things that are reported to have been fixed in Boot Camp 1.1

  • The keyboard drivers have been updated to fix most of the problems I reported before. It is now possible to use a key combo to right-click without a mouse, page up and down, and have access to a true delete button.

  • The device drivers have been improved so that you can now use the built-in webcam, microphone and (presumably) CD/DVD burners.

  • No word on whether or not additional screen resolutions have been added. But since my Dell has the same problem, I doubt it. I think I may just need to swallow my pride, admit that the laser eye surgery did more harm than good, and get myself a new pair of glasses.

Remaining MacBook shortcomings that prevent me from regretting my switch back to a Dell - at least for now.

  • The hardware problems with the heat and the sharp front edge are still an issue. If they fix these in the next iteration of the MacBook next year (and hopefully add a real right-click button!), that would go a long way toward convincing me to switch back.

  • I still haven't found a way to export email from Mac Mail into PST files. There are utilities to go from PST to Mail, but not the reverse. Which means that any email I send from Mail is locked in to Mac, and can never be retrieved if I decide to switch back, or even backed up on my PC desktop. If anyone hears of a utility that can get around this problem, I would love to hear about it. This is the one deal breaker that prevents me from considering OS X as a primary OS.

  • I'm actually rather fond of the built-in SD card slot on the Dell. If the MacBook had an expansion card that could replicate this, that would be cool. But it really is convenient to be able to back up your digital camera photos to the laptop without having to have a cumbersome cable with you. After all, if the MacBook had a SD card slot, I wouldn't have lost all those photos from ComicCon when my bloody camera disappeared. That alone is worth a lot to me.

So I still don't regret switching back to Dell for now. But my hopes have improved that they might have a MacBook that meets my needs by the time I need to get a new laptop again. And if nothing else, I am still very anxious to see when they'll come out with the Mac media center box (ie, a DVD player sized Mac with all the Front Row goodness of the Mini, a giant hard drive, TV connectivity, DVR capability, and possibly HD DVD player), especially now that I'm going to have a decent TV to plug the puppy in to.


    • My eyes were too lumpy to get Lasik, so I had to get PRK instead.

      With Lasik, they cut around the edge of your lens, peel it back, do their thing and replace it, so only the edges need to heal back together. The lens is intact, so there’s no change to your vision from that and the change they made can be seen almost right away.

      PRK is a less sophisticated method. They simply scrape off your lens, do their thing, and then let the entire lens grow back. The problem with this is that the lenses sometimes grow back at a different thickness, which can effect your vision. Especially when your diet is as crappy as mine, and you have so few nutrients to help the healing process along.

      Before the surgery, I had a slight astigmatism in each eye. The result of which was that things were just a little blurry around the edges, but I could otherwise see fine. I went over a decade without glasses the last time I lost mine, and didn’t really notice the difference that much. My eyes would get a little dry once in a while, but it wasn’t very bad.

      But now I’m nearsighted in one eye and farsighted in the other. My brain hasn’t quite learned to compensate for this yet, and my eyes are still far more sensitive to light. So I get headaches from the light on a fairly regular basis, computer monitors are wearying to stare at (which sucks, considering my career), and my eyes are almost always dry.

      I would gladly pay another $4000 to go back and slap the shit out of myself for deciding to blow that kind of money on something that was not absolutely necessary.

      That being said, everyone I know who has had Lasik done has absolutely loved it. I just don’t suggest anyone go for PRK unless their vision is seriously screwy. If it’s only a little off, your odds of having equally screwy or screwier vision afterwards are too high.

      • Did your doctor discuss LASEK with you? It’s similar to LASIK, only the cornea isn’t cut at all. It’s instead weakened with alcohol and rolled back. You still have a painful healing process (for me, that was 2 weeks until I could use a PC without pain), but it’s better than PRK. You can still have the post-PRK problems corrected if the corneas aren’t too thin, and the doc is good enough. I can recommend Julian Stevens, a surgeon at Moorfields Eye Hospital here in London (regarded as one of the best eye facilities in the world).

    • As for missing a post, this was about three years ago. When I was working at Informative, I took a week vacation in order to have time to recover from the surgery. Rather than being kind and firing me before I left for vacation/surgery, so I could cancel it and save the $4000 I was about to blow, the bastards waited until the day after my surgery to call me and give me the news. Fuckers.

      So not only did my vision get fucked up, I went into my unemployment $4000 in the hole and had to live off my credit cards and selling everything I owned for about eight months. Then I got the eBay job and things have been looking up ever since. But credit cards are expensive, so it’s still going to be another year or so before I’ve paid off all that credit card debt from my stint of unemployment.

      And did I mention that it was while I was in that stint of unemployment that my ex-landlord’s insurance company sued me for $14K over a wall heater that had caught fire to the apartment? Yeah, that was not a good year for me…

  1. It isn’t straightforward, but I think this would work:

    Use Mail to your hearts content.

    When the time comes, lauch Microsoft Entourage, tell it to import the Mail

    Configure Entourage to use the Exchange server at work, migrate the folder to your Personal Folder

    Should now be accessible to Outlok and be exportable as a pst file.

    • I can’t hook it up to the exchange server at work. This is my personal email I’m talking about, not work email.

      But if it is possible for Entourage to import your email from Mail (including sent mail), doesn’t Entourage itself allow you to export to PST? It is a Microsoft app after all, right?

      I would also have to figure out how much Entourage costs. I had a copy of Office for Mac that I got ages ago, but when I decided to ditch the Mac I sold it on eBay. It would probably be worth the money if it does allow me to export my Mail email into a PST.

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