systematic fun

I’d been wanting to do something with my desktop machine for a while as the Mac Pro is getting a little dated. The chipset hasn’t supported the last few versions of MacOS, and is still on Lion. At the start of the year, I decided to migrate to a mac mini and have been keenly waiting each Mac announcement, only to be disappointed at the lack of hardware upgrades.

Apple finally announced a bunch of hardware stuff a couple of weeks ago and overall, they were a wee bit underwhelming. Macbook pros still don’t support touch screens and instead have a touch bar to replace the function key row. The bar is sorta cute and it’s nice to see an alternative to function keys but nothing earth shattering. On top of that, there was bugger all to say about mac minis or the current mac pro, though at least they haven’t been phased out. Even the microsoft hardware announcement was way more interesting.

Last weekend I went out and bought a mac mini (2014 model, 8GB ram, 1TB drive). I had been weighing up my options and was also considering the Gigabytes Brix and Intel NUC. The mini had the advantage of OS compatibility whereas the others would have required a migration from mac to windows. A key requirement was photo management so I would have had to purchase Adobe’s Lightroom for the winbox whereas MacOS comes with their current photo software, Photos (iPhotos is the old version on my MacPro that’s no longer supported).

Gone are the days when changing machines meant running two systems side by side for a week while you moved stuff across. Setting up the mac mini was dead easy:

  • start it up
  • connect to network
  • connect to Pro’s Time Machine backup (on NAS)
  • automatically transfer data – a few hours via wifi
  • update software
  • remaining step is to upgrade MacOS from El Capitan to Sierra

Time consuming but painless. My windows experience of migrating machines is also time consuming but with occasional pain. Time machine is the best backup system I’ve used and I’d love to be able to use similar for my non mac devices. With that said, upgrading the laptop from Windows 8 to Windows 10 was dead simple and pain free, similarly android.

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