I feel… Mac-ish….

My new session as a second year student has really been very boring till last week. Although I had many things to write, I could not end up writing a post and going up to the café to post it. I expected my second year start to be as good as the first one, but till last week it only had been an extension of where I had left as a first year student. Well the first thing that you think of when you are in second year is that you are now a senior and now is the time for you to rag the freshers. But I have been really lenient till now, no ragging, no pdp. As a result I hardly know any of the juniors, and hardly any of them know me. Well at this point of time it doesn’t matter. Slowly I will get to know others.

There has been some learning experience in this semester. Firstly I have started with php… sigh… finally. Php seems to be a very simple language till now. It is a lot broader and flexible than C++ language. I have to start with databases, and even that is simple if you are using phpmyadmin. The next thing I learned in this semester is to ride a bike. Bike as in Motorcycle (I know some Americans read my blog, so they should not confuse it with bicycle). Bikes are really an easy thing to arrange. You will always have friends around you who have bikes. And so if you are in the university, you must know how to ride it.

But now since this weekend, everything looks to good. Simply because now finally I have Mac Os X running on my system. Well, I you have been reading my blog, or even skar’s blog you must know what all I had went through last year. I had the worst time of my life, both Karan and me were cursing my computer at the end of a week long of perseverance to install Mac. Now finally this time Karan has brought some nice ‘jugad’ that managed to get the Operating System running on my computer. The ‘jugad’ was VMware. We tried to install both 10.4.7 (which worked for Varenya the other day) and 10.4.6 which has worked on other computers. But with in minutes of the start of the installation, it would stall and ask us to retry. Well things very not very pleasant till Karan pulled out the trick called ‘VMware’ out of his hat. Apparently it set up a virtual machine through my windows onto my other drive, emulation everything apart from my processor. And somehow it managed to install Mac. Now when rebooted using my Seagate HDD, my machine booted in Mac. Wow!! The speed was awesome. It identified my processor as Pentium D 4 GHz…. (although my processor is only 3 GHz in speed). The whole booting took just 27 secs, right from BIOS till a completely started system. But this was not the end of it. The entire process was not that simple. The first problem was that (obviously) it did not support my nVidia graphics card. And secondly it did not support my onboard Sigmatel sound card too (in spite of installing the driver). So we decided to install 10.4.6 instead of 10.4.7 as Sigmatel driver worked in that in one of Karan’s relative’s computer in Himachal (unintentional use of bad English, mind you not wrong English). So we did it, but there were lots of hiccups all the way. Once the installation through VMware stopped giving the error that the workstation got disconnected (or sumthing like that). Well when we checked out on the Disk Management, it did not recognize the second volume at all, as if the disk was physically removed. But no, it was still connected. When we tried to restart, it would boot into Windows (which is in the Samsung HDD, placed second in the Drive order after the Seagate HDD). When we remove the Samsung connection, the BIOS won’t load!! When reconnected, it would load. That was bad. We predicted a Hard Disk crash. But when we inserted the Mac installer DVD, it started with the installation initially, then suddenly Mac OS 10.4.6 started. Strange!! The Hard Disk recovered?? But at the next reboot with only the Seagate connected, it said ‘No OS found’. It was really bad and confusing!!! Thus my PC was termed as temperamental and indeterministic by Karan. After the lunch (delicious Rajma, Parwal and Kofta) we sat down again. Since the sound card did not work in 10.4.6, we decided to properly install Mac Os 10.4.7 slowly, steadily with proper partitions and hopefully for the last time that day. This time everything went on well. I also installed another copy of Windows on the Seagate drive. Now this changed my active partition to Windows and it would not let me boot into Mac. Since Ubuntu did not work on my computer, Karan used some hi-fi commands through the terminal of the installer DVD to change it. Now all was set and running. Applications were installed (or rather copied, Mac does not have anything like installation, just copy the applications and it runs!!). A small problem that the Mac would only start in 1024x768 resolution was easily solved by referring to the internet. Now I have a good Mac, just missing the really awesome graphics effects (like the ripple effect”) and the also the sound (which I guess can be solved using a USB sound card).

Configuration as shown by System Information and cpu-z: Those are true

Apparent configuration as detected by Mac.

xBench Analysis: Only the main ones, omitted Drive, graphics and open GL analysis.

I also got another new stuff from Karan. He got me a new pair of earphones that I badly needed after my Apple ones ‘died’. A new “Sony MDR-EX71SL/WK Fontopia Headphones (White)”. They are an excellent pair of in-ear headphones. Although you need to get used to of in-ear at first, but it won’t take much time. The head phone has really good sound isolation. In the Metro when I was listening to it, I could only hear the loud announcements very faintly. No other chatting, jabbering of the fellow passengers, not even the screeching Metro wheels. In the bus ride to Chandigarh I could peacefully enjoy the soft music of ‘May It Be’. I must say they are a lot better that the Apple iPod’s earphones in terms of cutting down outside noise. The sound quality is far better too.

Finally, some news about the campus. Election is round the corner (coming Friday), and we are already feeling the heat. But until now the experience has been very different from last year. This year many of our friends are a part of campaigning and many of them are candidates for the post of DR. And so this year there has been times when we get our work done through them, and also tell them “You want votes or not? Cause if you don’t help me out you are not getting any votes from our side!!” Last year it was really different, we had to hear them out, all the things they had to say, we had to get ourselves ‘kidnapped’, in short the experience as a first year student has not been very well. I am sure even this year the freshers are facing the music. Police checks at the campus gates have already started. When we returned from Delhi, they thoroughly checked our identity before letting us enter the campus. I guess we are not far from some police raids in the middle of the night….Oh this reminds me…… “Oooooo Aaahhhhh… In the middle of the night, I go walking in my sleep……….” River of Dreams by Billy Joel.