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News Archive for Friday, May 7th, 2004Return to Accelerate Your Mac!

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News stories of May 7th, 2004:
X Resource Graph 1.0
(clip from their press release)
(Update- as of fall 2004 the new page for XResource Graph is at http://www.gauchosoft.com.)

" XRG (X Resource Graph) is an open source system monitor application for MacOS X. XRG will monitor your CPU usage, memory usage, battery status, machine temperature, network activity, disk activity, local weather, and stock market data.
XRG 1.0 contains many new features and bug fixes. The primary new feature is a new machine temperature graph that will graph the temperature of different locations in your computer. Supported CPUs include PowerMac G5s, Aluminum Powerbook G4s, and iBook G4s. Other new features include the addition of uptime statistics to the CPU graph, the ability to drag XTF theme files to the graph to set graph colors, a re-designed preferences panel with new icons, and the option to hide XRG's dock icon (through a new contextual menu for the graph title bar). A complete list of changes and bug fixes can be found at http://www.starcoder.com/xrg/changelog.shtml. The release (1.2M) can be downloaded here. The homepage for XRG is at http://www.starcoder.com/xrg/."

I tried XRG on a AL Powerbook and G5 system (I disabled the stock quotes and weather monitoring and changed the background colors.) It was interesting to see the G5's CPU temperatures were typically much lower than the U3 Chipset temperature (and the CPU temps were too low to be accurate I think) and being able to monitor several temperature sensors in the AL PB G4, including the battery and P.S. temperature.
Update See Monday's news for XRG author's comments that the reported CPU temperatures in the G5 are from a sensor near them (ambient temp), not the actual CPU chip temperature.

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GameRanger 4.0 Update
There's a press release from Scott Kevill on GameRanger 4.0's addition of ladders, ratings, and rankings for competitive play for Premium members.
(Note: The next day version 4.0.1 was released, see http://www.gameranger.com/news/ for a list of fixes.)
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Pioneer DVR-107/Discs/Retrospect Express bundle, OS X Sale
(email from sponsor OWC - updated for OS X info)

" New OS X Deals
Apple OS X 10.1.x we now have for $8.95
Apple OS X 10.2.x 'Jaguar' Update Sets (requires 10.1.x) $29.00
Apple OX X 10.2.x 'Jaguar' Update Set bundled with 10.1.4 CD Set $34.99
Apple OS X 10.2.x 'Jaguar' FULL Installer Set $37.99
Apple OS X 10.2.x 'Jaguar' FULL Installer Set Bundled with Apple iLife '2003' $49.99
And Apple OS X 10.3.x 'Panther' FULL Retail Box Version is $109.99
I am sure that our OS X 10.1.x and 10.2.x deals, especially the bundle with iLife are pretty unbeatable. Our 10.3.x price is pretty competitive too if not one of the best deals for 10.3 out 'Panther' out there.

DVR-107 Kit
We are offering the Pioneer DVR-107 with 5 Pieces DVD-R Media, 10 pieces CD-R Media, and Dantz Retrospect Express for $125.99. We also provide detailed instructions for the different PowerMac models on our website for installation.
Best Regards,
Lawrence R. O'Connor
Other World Computing "

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Apple iBook G4 Graphics Update (driver update for OpenGL issues)
I don't own an iBook G4, but a reader sent a note that Apple posted an iBook G4 Graphics Update 1.0 (dated 05/06/04) that notes OpenGL fixes:

"About iBook Graphic Update
This update is recommended for the 12-inch 1GHz, and 14-inch 1.2GHz iBook G4. It updates the graphics driver to fix a compatibility issue that may exist with applications that use OpenGL.
When this update package is downloaded and installed it will replace the old ATIDriver.bundle with a new one.
The installer will guide you through the steps necessary to install the iBook G4 Graphics Update.
Requirements:
Mac OS X 10.3.3 or later, iBook G4"

Previous iBook G4 owners (like the G4/800MHz model) said this update would not apply - although one owner said he removed the installer checks and applied it. (with the same graphics chip in all the iBook G4s to date - not sure why only the 1GHz/1.2GHz only models needed this patch - unless they had a later driver version with problems (or there was some issue with the later models different G4 revision and the original driver.)
If any iBook G4 owner has seen an OpenGL issue that this fixes, (or if it improves OpenGL apps/game performance based on before/after tests) - let me know. Thanks.
(UPDATE - See Monday's (May 10th, 2004) news page for an iBook G4/800 owner's report on installer mods to get the update to apply.)

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OWC price cuts on Mercury Extreme G4 CPU Upgrades, 128MB EDO Dimms for $16.99
(email from sponsor OWC)

" We just lowered pricing on several models of the Mercury Extreme G4 CPU Upgrades:
G4/867-900MHz now $229.99 - limited supply
G4/867-933MHz now $239.99, was $259.99
And our G4/867-1GHz upgrade is now $269.99
Also - the 1.4-1.467GHz is now $479.99, reduced from $499.99.

128MB 5V EDO DIMMs now $16.99! Down from $17.50, already a great deal - now even sweeter at $16.99.
Work as 128MB for 73/75/76/85/86/95/9600s and compatible clones. Also.... Work as 64MB for 54/55/64/6500s & 6360 models.
Best Regards,
Lawrence R. O'Connor
Other World Computing"

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Customization of Eyehome RSS/XML News Feed
Justin Meyer sent a mail earlier this week about customizing the EyeHome RSS/XML news feed file but included only a link to a modified file. I asked if he could include info for users to modify the file (for their preferences) and he later wrote he's posted an Applescript for it that's now listed at Macupdate. See Eyehome Customization RSS/XML feed 0.1

" Apple script for changing the RSS/XML feeds (services->news) on your Eyehome!
Dutch language RSS/XML feeds only at the moment, later this month I'll add German, French, Italian, Spanish.
Requirements:
Internet Connection, Elgato Eyehome, G4 or better"
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Mac Battle League for Rainbow6/Raven Shield/Ghost Recon/A.Army
(from their email)

" The *DAMN Battle League started into season VIII(8) with 8 different ladders:
* A 1vs1 Rainbow Six and Rogues Spear ladder open for all players
* A Ghost Recon, Raven Shield and America's Army Team ladder for clans only.
The GhR and RvS Team Ladders also include tournament like finals at the end of the season
* A 2vs2 CQB Ghost Recon clan ladder
* And this season new: a Free For All (FFA) Ghost Recon and Raven Shield ladder, where from 4 up to 8 people fight in quick 4 round battles.
The Battle League has currently over 1400 players and over 2000 cbs have been played since we added seasons in mid 2002. All further information can be found on http://www.planetrainbowsix.com/damnr6. "
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Apple Knowledge Base docs on FCP HD, Safari, .Mac, iMovie, OS X Server 10.3
(from apple's mail list - some repeats from earlier this week)

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Rate Your CPU Upgrade Reports Database Updated
The Rate Your CPU Upgrade database has been updated with 1 new report this morning (entries from Thursday, entries today are added the next newsday morning). Total to date: 9,357. Here's a summary of the report added today (search by brand/mac model for full reports - latest reports always shown first):

  • PowerLogix Dual. G4 1.2GHz in (DP450) Dual G4 (rated 9)

    (My reviews of G4 and G3 upgrades w/apps/game tests, install info, etc. are linked on the CPU upgrades page. OC/CPU module articles are on the Systems page.)

(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 Update Listing
The Drive Compatibility Database had 8 new reports added (reader entries from Thursday, entries today are added the next newsday morning. Entries with no comments are not posted). The database includes reports on Combo DVD-CDRW, CDROMs, DVD-ROM, DVD-RAM, DVD-R, 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, USB, adapters). Current total 12,307 reports. (searching by drive type/brand, mac model etc. listed below will show the full reports, most recent first)

    CDRW Drives:
  • IDE Samsung SW-252F 52x32x52x in G4/AGP (OS X 10.3)
    (using Patchburn II for Panther burn support.)

    DVD-RAM Drives:
  • Firewire cased Matshita PD-2 LF-D110 used w/G4 AGP (OS X 10.3)
    (long report with oxford firmware tweaks noted for the drive to work correctly)

    DVD-R Drives:
  • IDE Toshiba SD-R5112 in B&W G3 (OS X 10.3)
    (includes notes on OF tip to boot from CD)

    DVD+R/RW + DVD-R/RW Drives:
  • Firewire Plextor PX-708UF used w/PowerBook G4 (OS X 10.3)
    (using Patchburn II for Panther burn support. Includes tip on using Expert mode tweak for discburner errors.)
  • IDE LG GSA-4082B in G4/AGP (OS X 10.3)
    (using patchburn II for burn support)
  • IDE Pioneer DVR-107D in SIngle G4 DDR (OS X 10.3)
    (native burn support in 10.3.3)
    (Illustrated CD drive install guide here covers G4 towers up to the Digital Audio Model, Beige G3 MT and B&W G3 Macs)

    Hard Drives:
  • USB (cased) Toshiba MK3018GAS 30GB used w/Single G4 DDR (OS X 10.3) (problems noted)

    Removable Media Drives:
  • IDE Iomega 100MB ZIP in G4/AGP (OS X 10.3)

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.)
(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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Recent Reviews and Articles:
Listing/links to recent articles and reviews you may have missed.
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