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Accelerate Your Mac! News Archive for: 3/26/2002 Tuesday's NewsReturn to Accelerate Your Mac!

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Top stories of March 26th, 2002:

More info on Roger Wilco For Mac (programmer comments)
A reader replied to the earlier post today on a petition to get Roger Wilco ported to the Mac:

    " re: Roger Wilco for Mac.
    Wade Williams (--au-- in WarBirds) recently responded to a post on the very subject.
    Scroll down until you find Wade's / au's comments.
    http://agw.warbirdsiii.com/agw//Forum3/HTML/027315.html.
    James K.

    (Here's the comments from his post, dated March 25th, 2002)

    Here's the scoop guys:

    Roger Wilco for the Mac has not been touched since shortly after the acquisition by HearMe (and it was then subsequently acquired by GameSpy).

    My contract was cancelled by HearMe before all the bugs were worked out. There are definitely known bugs. (In fact, a complete rewrite was underway when the contract was cancelled).

    I *definitely* have plans to do a cross-platform application/library in the future. In fact, I've already started the project, but currently it's still in the design phase.

    I would hope to get that project completed within the next 12 months or so, but at this point, it's too early to make any promises. On the otherhand, should I suddenly have the opportunity for a lot of uninterrupted time, there's a chance I might make significant progress, if no other projects are pressing.

    (For those of you wondering why I have difficulty finding the time, I have a demanding day job, a current off-hours project, and 9-month old twins)

    The caveat is that this new application/library will be OS X only on the Mac. Such applications are extremely difficult to write on OS 9. It was a major pain with RW and it's simply not worth the effort these days as users are quickly transitioning to OS X and many games will soon start becoming OS X-only.

    I will go ahead and start a development log where you can follow my progress. Don't expect much of anything for a while, and expect long gaps between updates. I'll put it at:
    http://www.employees.org/~wwilliam/macvoice.html
    but it won't be up until sometime next week, as I'm currently out-of-town. Wade "

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OS X Cache Enabler for Newer Tech G3/G4 Upgrades in Legacy Macs
(Update - see comments above from Sonnet regarding their free OS X cache enabler for their cards and newer tech cpu cards, and Ryan Rempel's comments below this post.)

    " TechCache enables the backside cache on Newer MAXpowr G3 and G4 upgrades under Mac OS X only (an uninstall option is also provided). TechCache software is priced at $19.95. TechMeasure is offered by TechnoWarehouse at no charge. Customers can buy a CD with both programs.

    "Our TechMeasure app is the kind of added value that Newer Technology was famous for and that our customers expect. Newer had the Gauge Series and now TechMeasure takes over that important function for all OS X users," says Terry Unrein, TechnoWarehouse.

    Prior to the release of TechCache, Newer Technology MAXpowr G3 and G4 processor upgrade customers could install and use Mac OS X, however the backside cache was not enabled, reducing performance. TechCache ensures that MAXpowr users realize the full performance potential of their upgraded Power Mac(s). Power Mac 7300-9600 users who wish to install OS X may still use the freely available XPostFacto software from OWC available for download on the web at:
    http://eshop.macsales.com/OSXCenter/Download/XPostFacto.img.sit

    TechMeasure reports system performance information from CPU type and speed to cache size and speed to bus speed. It is this information that allows users to know that their system is performing at maximum speed. Unless the backside cache is enabled using TechCache, TechMeasure cannot report its speed.

    TechCache runs on most MAXpowr G3 and G4 upgrades, including "PCI" and ZIF upgrades, except MAXpowr G3 L2 and MAXpowr G3 PDS. Check the TechnoWarehouse website for a complete list of supported MAXpowr upgrades:
    http://www.technowarehousellc.com/downloads.html
    TechMeasure and TechCache should be downloaded and decompressed under Mac OS X to reduce file decompression errors. "

Ryan Rempel (author of the XPostFacto and L2CacheConfig OS X Utilities for legacy Macs) replied:

    " L2CacheConfig should work with any G3/G4 upgrade card, including Newer's. There are some isolated cases where it doesn't work for some reason, and people need to try something else. But PowerLogix also has a free cache enabler, and it will work with Newer cards as well.

    As far as enabling the cache goes, one processor upgrade card is pretty much like another (or so I've been told). However, L2CacheConfig is pretty basic--it just enables the cache and doesn't do much else. Newer's Mac OS 9 software had some additional features--it could optimize memory timings and the like. I don't know whether TechCache does that kind of thing (or whether PowerLogix does).
    Ryan"

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Sonnet Notes They Have Free Legacy Mac OS X Cache Enabler for Newer Tech Upgrades
In reply to the earlier post today, Sonnet's software engineer wrote they have also have a free OS X backside cache enabler available for Newer Tech upgrade cards in legacy Macs:

    " Mike,
    In reference to your latest press release about TechCache from Technowarehouse, I think you should also mention that this exact feature has been provided by Sonnet for almost a year and has recently become a FREE download available at:
    http://sonnettech.com/downloads/osx_upgrade_sw.html#x%20tuneup-pci.

    To make it clear, Sonnet X Tune-Up, does work with Newer Technology MAXpowr products. The previous Newer engineers that now work for Sonnet gave me information on how to verify that the card is a Newer Technology product and then how to read the information about the type of product. This is used to code a Mac OS X kernel extension that enables the L2 cache of a Newer Technology product exactly as the original Mac OS 9 software from Newer did.
    Thanks.
    Joel Vink, Mac OS X Software Engineer
    Sonnet Technologies, Inc."

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Petition for Mac version of Roger Wilco
(Note - see later post/update above for more info.)
    " My name is Daniel Costello (|55th|Zeheeba) from the 55th Unreal Tournament Clan. We are hosting a petition that we hope will show GameSpy that there is much interest in an OS X compatible version of Roger Wilco in the Macintosh gaming community. As you possibly know, they ceased development on an OS 9 version early in its alpha stages.

    Our intention is to communicate a message to GameSpy, not annoy them. So we aren't spamming them - we are saving up signatures, and will send them in large groups (currently every 300). We are also dedicated to the integrity of the count, so we have written the petition code to allow only one signature on the petition per IP address.

    We are writing to you, because we are interested in reaching the largest number of Mac gamers possible, and we ask you to consider including the petition in your daily headlines. If you feel that it isn't something you can feature on your site, whether a result of policy, or a matter of opinion, we totally understand.

    We don't feel that this sort of action is unwelcome by Gamespy, as their site states "we invite you to write a brief note to rogerwilco@gamespy.com to ensure that we remain apprised of the value Mac gamers see in tools like Roger Wilco." It is in the spirit of the Macintosh to let our voices be heard by software developers, and to let them know that we constitute a viable market worth dedicating resources to.
    The petition is online at:
    http://www.55th.net/rogerwilco.htm
    Kindest Regards,
    Daniel Costello (|55th|Zeheeba) http://www.55th.net/"

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MacPlay Notes Icewind Dale is Shipping
MacPlay sent a note that Icewind Dale is now shipping. For more info on the game see http://www.macplay.com/games/icewinddale.shtml.
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Retrospect 5 for OS X Now Shipping
Dantz has a press release today noting that the final (non-beta) version of Retrospect 5 for OS X is now shipping. Retrospect Backup v5.0 is available in four editions:

  • Retrospect Express Backup ($79 list, $19.95 upgrade from prev Express version).
  • Retrospect Desktop Backup ($249 list, $99.95 upgrade)
    (*Note* - a reader wrote that the Desktop PC version was $149 and that he called Dantz and was told the Mac desktop version should also be $149. Although the press release still noted $249 as of 3/27/2002 AM, the Dantz online store showed a price of $149 as of 3/27 AM.)
  • Retrospect Workgroup Backup ($499 list, $199.95 upgrade)
  • Retrospect Server Backup ($799 list, Edition upgrades from the Desktop and Workgroup editions are available for a limited time at $349.95.) "

For more details on each of these versions, see the Dantz web site.
(Note - a reader replied with a comment about an alternative (free) backup utility for OS X that was noted here in the past as an alternative option on the FWB 3.0 OS X backup software feedback page [aka Tri-Backup] - Carbon Copy Cloner. It's not as full featured as Retrospect of course, but just a FYI.)
.

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CPU Upgrades Owner Reports Database Updated:
The Rate Your CPU Upgrade database has been updated with 5 new reports. (Total to date: 6,913). [Entries made today are posted the next newsday morning. Incomplete entries, those with not comments, missing info, etc. are deleted]

  • Newer Tech G4/400 in B&W G3 (rated 8)
  • Sonnet G3/500 in 20th Anniv. Mac (rated 10)
  • Apple 8600/250 OC report
    (FYI - several years ago I posted a speed (resistor) settings for the "Mach5" Apple 604ev CPU cards here)
  • Beige G3/266 OC report
  • G4/400 AGP OC report

(Warning - Overclocking may not be reliable and could lead to hardware failure or corrupted data.) You can find the 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 /Cardreader Compatibility Database Updates
The Drive Compatibility searchable database had 4 new reports added today. The database includes reports on Combo DVD-CDRW, CDROMs, DVD-ROM, DVD-RAM, DVD-R, CDRW, Hard Drives and Removables (tape drive, ORB, ZIP, MO drives, CF/Smartmedia readers, etc.) in all interface types (IDE, IDE RAID cards, Firewire, SCSI, adapters). Current total 6,946 reports. Here's a summary listing of today's new reports:

    IDE CDRW Drive Reports:
  • Plextor Plexwriter 24/10/40A in G4 no AGP [Yikes/PCI] (OS 9.1)

    Firewire CDRW Drive Reports:
  • Hi-Val 24x10x40x (IDE drive in FW case) used w/G4 AGP (OS 9.1)
    (hi-val listed under "other" brands)

    IDE Hard Drive Reports:
  • IBM Travelstar 48GB in PowerBook G3 Wallstreet2 (OS 8.6)
    (Noted Tekserve sheild solved sleep sensor issue. FYI - wallstreet illustrated HD install guide here)
  • Maxtor 60GB in iMac slot loading (OS 9.2)
    (noted drive would not wake from sleep)

You can find full owner reports (latest shown first) by searching the database by drive/brand/interface/mac models (the latest reports are shown first in searches).
For guides to installing CD/CDRW/DVD drives or Hard drives in many mac models, see the IDE Articles page. The Firewire articles page also has guides on case kits, installing drives, etc.
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. [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.]

(Entries today will be added the following newsday. Incomplete entries are deleted. Do not post questions in the database, it's for drive reports not questions on what drive to buy - for that try searching the database for reports from owners of your mac model on the drive type/brand/interface, etc. you're interested in.)

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Other Net News Links
    Software Updates:
    (Barney was rushed today and didn't include any SW updates listings)

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News pages from 1, 2 and 3 years ago:
(Sometimes these old pages are a bit embarrassing - and in many cases the offsite links may not work and comments there were accurate only on the date posted regarding upgrade availability, etc.)

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