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Switching to the Mac Tiger Edition

The Missing Manual By John Virata

For those of you who are Windows users and are considering switching to the Mac, or perhaps may want to add a Macintosh computer to your computer choices, you might need a bit of help in learning all the differences the Mac OS and Windows share, as well as many of the similarities. Switching to the Mac Tiger Edition by David Pogue and Adam Goldstein might be a good read for you. The book offers 15 chapters that detail the differences each operating system has and shows Windows users how to learn how to use the Macintosh operating system.

Chapter topics include How the Mac is Different; Windows and Icons; The Dock, Desktop, toolbar and Sidebar; Programs and Documents; Five Ways to Transfer your Files; Transferring email and Contacts; Special Software, Special Problems; Hardware on the Mac; Getting Online; Mail and Address Book; Safari, ichat, and Sherlock; Accounts and Security; System Preferences; The Freebie Program; and Installation and Troubleshooting. Within the review, we'll take a look at the first several chapters in this 508 page book. 

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Chapter 1: How the Mac is Different, offers a primer on how the Mac OS labels things differently from that of Windows, and how to find them. Discussions in this chapter include such topics as the one-button mouse, On, Off, and Sleep modes, the menu bar, the Finder, Dock, menulets, and their Windows counterparts. Also discussed are keyboard differences, what the Mac specific keys do, how the Mac OS handles disks, be they hard disk or optical disks or memory sticks, the application folder, system folder, title bar, zoom button, scroll bars and more. The chapter finishes off with a list of terms specific to Windows and their Macintosh counterparts.  

Chapter Two: Windows and Icons
The various icons in the Mac OS that you'll have to learn the functions of are discussed in this chapter. It really looks at the Mac OS X desktop and the associated icons found on the desktop. This chapter deals with icons found on the Dock, how to arrange and rearrange them, hiding icons, etc. The Apple menu discussions include topics on the menu bar, Icon view, Icon sizes and how to change them, text size, and how to customize your view for Windows XP style labeling conventions. You will also learn how to keep your icons in an orderly fashion if you choose to do so, folders and working with the flippy triangles, Column view tweaks,using Spotlight to find files, and more.

Chapter 3: The Dock, Desktop, Toolbar, and Sidebar
This chapter further delves into these four main elements that make up the Mac OS. Topics discussed under the Dock include how to organize and remove dock items; how to hie, shrink, or rotate the dock; how to switch applications using the Dock and access secret menus from the dock; and how to put things on your Dock. The Sidebar discussion details how to find things on your computer. You use the Sidebar to locate such items as a network, hard disk drive, Desktop, documents, music, pictures, etc. This section offers tips on how to customize the Sidebar with your own favorite places on your computer or network. The Finder toolbar section offers tips on how to navigate the Finder, use the search bar, removing or shrinking the toolbar, adding your own icons to the Toolbar as well as rearranging or removing toolbar icons, and further customizing your desktop. 

Chapter 4 Programs and Documents
While Macintosh and Windows versions of the same programs have for the most part been identical in feature set and other parameters, there are some differences in how the Mac OS programs work with the Mac OS when compared to their Windows counterparts. The chapter discusses some of these differences, such as switching and hiding programs, minimizing windows, using the Dock to launch your favorite programs, working with the alt(Apple clover key) +tab keys to switch programs, and working with Expose. Expose is a tool that enables you to quickly find a program that is buried underneath a whole host of other programs. With it, you can find a window in a currently running program, return to the desktop, which moves, all the open windows and programs to the edges of the display so you can have quick and uncluttered access to the desktop, and shrink all open windows ton a size that will fill the real estate of your display.

Switching to Mac Tiger Edition has a lot of useful information for those who are considering a switch to the Mac or wish to add the Mac to their computing work flow. The book is full of images of both Windows and Macintosh screenshots showing you what the difference is on both platforms, to get you up to speed, but for the most part concentrates on the Mac OS. As it should. If you are looking to work with the Macintosh computer, this book will help you to get up to speed with the operating system. If you are looking to switch to the Mac, it provides a lot of tips on how to move to such things as the Mac's Mail program and transferring your email settings, to how to work with some of the differences in applications that run on both platforms. There is a lot in the book. It is a good read if you are contemplating a switch.

Switching to the Mac Tiger Edition
David Pogue and Adam Goldstein

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John Virata is senior editor of Digital Media Online. You can email him at
Related Keywords:Switch to Mac, Mac OS X Tiger, Windows XP, David Pogue, Adam Goldstein,

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