new computer

My old Macbook Pro has been getting a bit long in the tooth for quite a while. The tipping point came when trying to edit some photos, and having the hard drive start thrashing. Given that a memory upgrade wasn't an option, a new one was getting to be a requirement.

So I was waiting for a while, hoping for Apple to come out with an i5 or i7 Macbook Pro (presumably Arrandale), but there's still no foreseeable prospect for that.

And then I poked my head in on the new 27" iMac; I'd never owned an iMac (other than, for a couple of weeks, a first-gen one that I gave to my Mom some years ago), and didn't envision myself ever owning one. But my jaw dropped when I saw that it had a monitor that would be an upgrade from my 24" Dell monitor (also getting a bit old, but a much less immediate need), could also drive an external monitor, and had a Nehalem i7 as a CPU option. Support for 16GB of RAM was the icing on the (very tasty) cake; 12 months same-as-cash financing and company discount were the sprinklies on top.

Well, I wasn't about to spring for that much memory, but 8GB wasn't too much extra.

So I stuck the iMac next to my old monitor, plugged it into the KVM, and now have a disgustingly big desktop. Being able to have Aperture take over the big screen, and still have what used to be a full desktop available. Oy. I'm feeling really spoiled now. The only way to improve it would be to replace the dell with an Apple 30" Cinema Display. Once they fix the backlighting on those, that is. :)

(For those wondering about the speed, I keep Rosetta@home (a distributed protein folding application) running all the time. It crunches a unit about 22% faster than the old MBP, and runs four times as many units at once. Score! And with all that stuff running, I still have significant free memory. Life is definitely good. :)

Update: Well, one slight flaw has raised its head; no support for jumbo frames (a requirement for taking advantage of gigabit ethernet).

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