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Part VI: Appendices > Getting Ready to Install

A.1. Getting Ready to Install

For starters, you need to make sure that you and your Mac have what it takes to handle Mac OS X—specifically:

  • A Macintosh that came with a G3, G4, or G5 processor. In other words, a Power Mac G3 (but not the old beige ones), Power Mac G4, or Power Mac G5; an iMac or eMac; a PowerBook G3 (except the very first model, the one bearing a six-color Apple logo) or PowerBook G4; or an iBook. (According to Apple, Macs with G3 or G4 upgrade cards don't qualify.) You can bend the rules a little, however; see the box on the next page.

  • Plenty of free hard disk space.You need at least 2 GB free to install the full Mac OS X—more if you install the Developer Tools, less if you decline to install the full 1 GB of printer drivers (more on this in a moment).

  • A lot of memory. Remember that when you use Mac OS X, you may sometimes have to run Mac OS 9 (in the form of the Classic simulator) simultaneously. One modern operating system takes a lot of RAM; two of them require even more. Apple recommends at least 128 MB of memory, but Mac OS X absolutely loves memory. For the greatest speed, install 256 MB, 512 MB, or more if you can afford it (and these days, you probably can).

  • The latest version of Mac OS 9. Once again, Mac OS X and Mac OS 9 will be coexisting on the same computer. You'll have the best luck if you upgrade your copy of Mac OS 9 (version 9.2.2, which Apple says is the final version) before installing Mac OS X.

  • The latest firmware. Firmware describes the low-level, underlying software instructions that control the actual circuitry of your Mac. Every now and then, Apple updates it for certain Mac models, and it's very important that your Mac has the absolute latest. The Software Update control panel of Mac OS 9 is supposed to alert you automatically when such updates become available. (These updates are also available for download at www.apple.com/support/downloads, of course.)



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