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News Archive for: 6/26/2001 Tuesday's NewsReturn to Accelerate Your Mac!

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Top stories of 6/26/2001:

Reader notes Freeware Linux DVD Player:
"These guys made a DVD player for linux and solaris. Freeware too. Would be nice to get this on the mac. Though most if it is CLI now.
Paul Sian"

The web page there notes that "Ogle" is first Linux DVD player that supports DVD menus. See their features page for more info on features and limitations. We're all hoping that this summer there will be an OS X update with DVD player support.

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Another Sonnet G4 Upgrade Owner Notes VM Fixes Photoshop Problems:
Last week there was a note in the news from a Sonnet G4 upgrade owner that enabling Virtual Memory solved a problem he had in Photoshop 6 after upgrading to the G4 Sonnet CPU. (This report was from a CPU upgrade database entry.) Another Sonnet G4 owner recently sent email about problems with PShop 5.5 and I mentioned the enabling Virtual Memory tip.

" Thanks for your speedy reply considering all the e-mails u must get daily. Anyway, curiously enough i got this email from sonnet in the same day i got yours:
    "Turn on virtual memory and you'll see your Photoshop crashes go away. Altivec support in Photoshop seems to require VM to be on to work. This is partially due to a bug in our 1.4.5 software which we're fixing in v1.4.6 which is due to be released within a week or two. It's also got something to do with the way that Adobe wrote their Altivec support into PS.
    -- Neal
    Sonnet Customer Service"

and apparently it's working ok now. I haven't thoroughly tested it but it seems fine. Since u asked and it might come in handy for other users, the system i was and am using was 9.1 and Photoshop 5.5 So it seems the problem is fixed until they come up with 1.4.6.
Bruno "

[Note: Another reader noted Pshop 6 problems with a Sonnet G4 in his 9600 was solved by using either XLR8's or Powerlogix's software without having to enable VM.) I've not had to enable VM in PS/G4 upgrade tests here before but then I've not tested a Sonnet G4 upgrade, so maybe this is something specific with their enabler software. I believe some previous Sonnet G4 owner reports also noted using Powerlogix's cache enabler and Alivec enabler, or XLR8's (instead of Sonnet's) also solved some Virtual PC 4 issues.

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Voodoo3 Problems with TombRaider Level Editor:
Ruffin Bailey sent a note that the level editor in the new Tomb Raider Chronicles game has a problem with the Voodoo3 card:

" Mike, Got Tomb Raider Chronicles for the Mac in the mail this weekend, and popped it into my old StarMax (with G3 upgrade) to see how the level editor worked. Fraid I got a pretty serious error when I tried to play that locked up my box, made me force-quit, and often did something so bizarre to my desktop that I had to reboot.

Here's the error: When I started up the Tomb Raider RoomEdit app, the app window came up fine, but then a system.out-like window popped up and started reeling out the same error until it was blue in the face. The error reads:

Invalid fifoTypegd error (hwcExecuteStatusWinFifo):
... and it repeats over and over until I force-quit. I could not access the RoomEdit GUI or return to the desktop while this error appeared.

Here's my Mac's set-up
StarMax 3000 with a 240 MHz G3 upgrade
Voodoo 3 PCI
96 megs of RAM
OS 9.1

I emailed Mark Adams to report the bug, and here's his [overnight!] response:

"Unfortunately this is probably the VooDoo card. The editor needs OpenGL in a window, and I don't remember if the VooDoo3 even supported that. The 3Dfx drivers were kind of flaky in any case for windowed mode, so thats my guess what might be happening."

I've always been extremely happy with the V3's gaming performance, but as everyone knows it isn't a 2D wonder.
Do you have any ideas how I might get the Voodoo to handle windowed mode a bit better?

I do want to make it clear that the Tomb Raider Chronicles game runs just fine (even though my processor is a little under the minimum system reqs) as does the modified Tomb Raider: The Last Revelation engine that you use to play levels that other people, both Mac and PC, have created with their level editors. Only the level editor itself has this show-stopping bug.
Ruffin Bailey "

I can't remember if the Voodoo3 (or 4/5) supported windowed 3D/Opengl, but Glide I know doesn't (it's full screen only - as is the Voodoo1/2 cards in any mode). I'm asking Ruffin what ROM/Driver version he's using but not sure that would matter. If any 3dfx card owners have run the TR Level Editor or have any suggestions for Ruffin, let me know.

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OS X on Legacy Macs:
For many months there have been pre-G3 mac reports on OS X installs here in the dedicated forum for that topic. Ryan Rempel's OS X cache enabler and install pages have been a big help. Recently Ryan has gotten hired by Other World Computing so that now he's getting some well-deserved pay for his efforts. Ryan has a OS X for Legacy Macs page at OWC's site with more info and plans for future projects.
Here's the latest comment from a reader email regarding OS X on legacy Macs:

" Dear Mike, I sent you a note yesterday about the kernel panic I was getting on my Umax J700 after updating to 10.0.4. I managed to solve the problem myself the hard way, but with some exciting news along the way. I ended up having to reinstall 10.0.0, but just out of curiosity, I used Ryan Rempel's new Unsupported Utility X to do it. Not only did it work like a charm, but it allowed me to install OS X with my Radeon PCI card in the machine, which has been the stumbling block in several previous installation attempts. Woohoo! Go Ryan! After that, I used the combined updater to update directly to 10.0.4, and although I've only been using it for 10 minutes, it booted, which is a step in the right direction.
Eric Webster
a.k.a. Mac Man"
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Interview with Pioneer on their DVR-A03 Superdrive:
A reader sent a link to a QT movie interview with Pioneer on their DVR-A03 (aka Superdrive) at (Their featured movie/story may change daily however.) With my cable modem and using Netscape 4.7 the video played great but it seems that page refreshes (for banner rotation perhaps) after several minutes which restarted the movie again - although the original audio was still heard. Maybe just a Netscape 4.7x quirk, but frustrating as it eventually locked up my PB running OS 9.
There have been several reader reports of using the retail box Pioneeer Superdrive with Toast 5/iDVD in the news and drive database. Yesterday's news had the most recent reader comments on the drive that is now being sold by BestBuy.
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OS 9/OS X/Linux Benchmarks:
Andrei Verovsk wrote he's posted a page with some MacOS 9/X/Linux benchmarks comparing file copy performance and Classic MacOS Emulation Performance using an iBook.
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CPU Upgrades Owner Ratings Database Updated:
The Rate Your CPU Upgrade database has been updated with 7 new reports today (total to date: 5,864). [Entries after midnight eastern time are added the following day.]

  • Metabox G4/400 (2MB cache) in B&W G3 (rated 10)
  • Metabox G3/400 in B&W G3 (rated 10)
  • Other World Computing G3/500 in Beige G3 (rated 10)
  • Sonnet G3/400 in Beige G3 (rated 10)
  • Sonnet G3/400 in 7300 (rated 10)
  • XLR8 G4/500 in B&W G3 (rated 10)
  • Beige G3/266 OC report

You can find these full reports by searching the database selecting the indicated Mac model and upgrade card brand/type. If you've upgraded the CPU on your Mac, please post an entry in the database. Search the database for entries from most every upgradable Mac model *before* you buy. (Searchable by mac model/upgrade brand). For detailed reviews with performance tests and install tips, see the CPU Upgrades page.)

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CDRW/CD/DVD/Hard Drive Compatibility Database Updates:
The Drive Compatibility searchable database had 5 new entries added this morning. The database has reports on Combo DVD-CDRW, CDROMs, DVD-ROM, DVD-RAM, CDRW, Hard Drives and Removables (tape drive, ORB, ZIP, MO drives, etc.) in all interface types (IDE, IDE RAID cards, Firewire, SCSI, adapters). Current total 4,091 reports. [BTW - the drive database is not a place to post questions, it's for reports on drives you've used. For guides to drive installs, see the IDE, SCI or Firewire articles linked above and/or the FAQ. If you post an updated entry - make sure you use the same name, etc. as you did before so I can find your past entry. Thanks.]
You can find full owner reports by searching the database by drive/brand/interface/mac models (the latest reports are shown first in searches).
If you've added a IDE, SCSI, Firewire or USB hard drive, CDRW, tape drive, etc. make sure you add a report to the database.
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