Leopard: First Thoughts

So I finally got around to upgrading to Leopard on my first gen black MacBook.  Now that I’ve played around with it for a few days I can safely say: It’s good.  To be honest, for me, nothing too much has changed. Don’t get me wrong though, I am quite aware of the over 300 changes made to the operating system. And I know just how much the back-end kernel space has changed. But for the most part, my day to day usage hasn’t changed that drastically. Spaces has replaced VirtueDesktops for virtual desktop functionality. The new Safari is lightning quick compared to the beta I had on the old system. I love the uniformity of the window appearance (though iTunes still has a different scroll bar… ). The new Mail and iCal are nice. I’m fine with the new dock and even moved it from it’s auto hidden state on the left side of my screen to a permanent display back in it’s default location at the bottom. Stacks are nice, Quick Look is sweet and wireless printing is much more refined. There are a few quirks though:

  • My office webmail (Outlook) refuses to authenticate in the new Safari. Worked just fine in the betas and Firefox.
  • Every so often I’ll have to manually connect to my wireless network when coming out of standby
  • Graphic animation seems a bit sluggish, for example bringing up dashboard or Expose, minimizing windows and switching spaces

I know the big thing with Leopard has been Time Machine.  You would think this would be the first thing I would take for a spin, but to be honest… I can’t see myself using it seriously until Apple adds the wireless backup functionality that was rumored to have been a feature at release time. Once that is supported I’ll be the first one to go grab an AirPort and set it up. All in all though a very solid update and definitely recommended for any Mac owner.

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