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Bill Gates has a bi-annual “think week.” I have an unpredictably scheduled “nerd week” that occurs whenever I no longer can walk into my office at home because boxes of electronics are piled up everywhere.
Last weekend, I started chipping away at the physical (and virtual) pile of software and hardware products that have piled up in my life. First up – Tiger.
While I spend most of my computer life on my various PCs (including my nifty new Tablet which I’ll write about soon), I keep a Mac G5 around for posterity. I usually use it for two things: (1) manage all my music / iPods (excellent marketing strategy Apple – sell me an $8k computer to help me with my iPod) and (2) reboot it each week to watch it automagically update its software.
Six months ago, I took a hard run at using it as my primary home machine. Given that I live in email and we are an Exchange shop, getting sync with Exchange working was an absolute requirement. I got about 90% of the way there with Entourage but couldn’t get contacts and tasks to sync correctly. Plus – well – Entourage sucks. So – I tried Mail. I made a little progress with some add-ons but eventually gave up and went back to watching my Mac update itself once a week.
Tiger was promising. I heard rumors that it did a better job of integrating with Exchange via OWA (Outlook Web Access) and that the Mail client was substantially better. So – I gave it a shot. The install was flawless – it’s always a delight to watch a new OS install itself and have no issues. I fiddled around with the neat new UI stuff (yeah – Dashboard is cute but it held my attention for about three minutes.) On to Mail and sync.
Tiger remembered all my previous Exchange config stuff and inherited it nicely (or did whatever the Mac equivalent is.) Boom – my Outlook mail was in Mac Mail. I fiddled around a little and confirmed that they stayed in sync. Cool. Now – on to Contacts. Thirty minutes later, I gave up. I can’t figure out what’s wrong – I’ve tried every combination of OWA stuff I could imagine, sorted through the various error messages, figured out the ridiculous new way Tiger handles Sync (what was wrong with the old way – at least it was obvious), tried using our LDAP server (bonk) and – well – Google and the Apple support site were no real help. So – I gave up. I never got to trying to get iCal to sync.
So – back to having my G5 control my iPod (at least it’s going to start controlling my Roku SoundBridge soon – that was on the floor in a box until about an hour ago – more in a future post on nerd week.) At least I’ve done my part to help Apple make their quarter.