Night of the Panther | November 13, 2003

When new software comes out I usually leave it a few weeks before installing it. Experience has shown me that most first releases are buggy and it takes a few weeks to iron out all the quirks. This was true with Panther, the new OS version from Apple. The initial release seemed to install correctly, but lot's of people were having troubles with external firewire drives and the new file vault feature, not to mention a number of apps just not working. However a couple of days ago apple released their first update (read patch) so I thought it would probably be safe to upgrade my OS.

So last night I installed Panther. I usually just slap on new software without backing up, but in this instance I decided to burn a few disks of important stuff, just in case. Luckily the install went almost without a hitch. I say almost because the install wouldn't actually work the first couple of times I tried. However I remembered that I hadn't installed the last bunch of OS10.2 updates, and once they were in it worked like a charm.

A number of people had commented about the speed of installation so I was kind of surprised that the whole thing took the best part of an evening. Still I'm all panthered up now and roaring to go.

The main reason for the upgrade was fast user switching. In OS10.2 you had to log out (closing down all your apps in the process) to switch users. Now user switching is seamless, which will hopefully make sure user accounts actually get used properly.

I really like expose, however I'm not actually sure how often I'll use it. I've got so used to hiding all my apps using alt-click that I rarely have more than a couple of apps visible at any one time. Still I'm sure it will come into use when using things like DWMx which really doesn't handle windows very well.

Supposedly there are over 100 new features in Panther so I'd be really interested to hear what people thing about this upgrade, what features you are most excited about, and what tips people have for getting the most out of Panther.

Posted at November 13, 2003 10:11 AM