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Moving to Mac Made Easy 368

Posted by pudge
from the here's-switch-in-your-eye dept.
Jaguar777 writes "According to an article on CNET, Apple has a new weapon in its campaign to woo PC users: a $59 piece of software that makes the switch to Macintosh easier. Detto Technologies has started selling Move2Mac, a combination of software and a custom USB cable that helps PC users move many of their files, settings and even background pictures to a new Mac running Mac OS X 10.2. Sounds nice. Is there anything like this in the works for the penguin masses?" Detto has had software to move settings from one PC to another; Apple requested them to make it to move from a PC to a Mac, and will carry it in their retail stores.
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Moving to Mac Made Easy

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  • by nick-less (307628) on Monday November 04, 2002 @09:19AM (#4593532)
    and even background pictures

    thats clearly a "must have" feature, take your background pictures with you whereever you go, from pc to mac, from mac to cellular, from cellular to the fridge door ...
    • by SecGreen (577669) on Monday November 04, 2002 @09:53AM (#4593715)
      These background pictures could contain copyrighted content. This Move2Mac product is obviously designed to circumvent the digital rights of artists, and should be banned immediatly!
    • by Broken Bottle (84695) on Monday November 04, 2002 @10:00AM (#4593748)
      Not to be condescending to them, but considering your average Mac user (and Apple) put a much higher priority on asthetics and usability than, say, a Linux user, this is a big deal feature. I'm a network / PC support consultant. Whenever I migrate a user to a new PC, the rule is this: the less tech savy the user, the more important Windows dressing like screen savers and background photos are to them. It's a major comfort issue for them. I think that your typical switcher is going to be one of the people that's less technical than a Windows user NOT making the switch, so things like background photos are a big deal in keeping the new computer comfortable and nonthreatening. It's pretty smart of them to have that feature in the migration software.

      Chris
      • by Ponty (15710)
        The desktop background isn't all that important, but a novice user's e-mail settings, inbox contents, and downloaded digital camera pictures sure are important.

        This is a great move, and really funny, too boot.
      • I feel the same way about my custom bash prompt. A new installation is not complete until it's in place. :-)

        On the other hand, my desktop is plain black.
      • "It's a major comfort issue for them. I think that your typical switcher is going to be one of the people that's less technical than a Windows user NOT making the switch, so things like background photos are a big deal in keeping the new computer comfortable and nonthreatening. It's pretty smart of them to have that feature in the migration software."

        That is why images like this [powerwatch.com] (non-pr0n, you can safely click this at work) image exist. :-)

    • by kootch (81702)
      it's all about the comfort level. Apple is trying to make the users that they're moving feel as if nothing really has changed visually... it's still "their" computer. Once they are visually comforted, they'll start using it, and hopefully notice how things work better/faster...

      makes complete sense to me
    • The following is not un-typical as a brief run through of my assistance with a friends computer set up

      Me: Okay - we'll just dump everything into this Zip drive I just stuck in the USB port - you want everything moved?
      Them: Yeah
      Me: Okay, My Docs, Email, etc... We'll get the 15Gb of MP3s later okay?
      Them: Can you at least copy over Dido?
      Me: Okay - right - not just plug it into the new machine click click tap tap click Waalaah - your email, address book, your docs all in place
      Them: But wheres my cool Kylie backdrop and freaky wavey light screen saver
      Me: You want those??
      Them: What the fuck do YOU think! Jesus, I'd be better doing this myself, what a waste of fucking time, get the fuck out of my fucking house you twat! and take your Zippy disk with you!

      Its the little things that matter!
  • by mitzman (523507)
    I used to work at Best Buy and we had the PC2PC cable that this article is talking about. It never worked. The cable is definitely a sham and a waste of money. It takes more time to set it up and pray that it works right than it does to just burn a couple of cd's of data. Oh and this cable doesn't copy programs over, just data files. So in my opinion, save yourself the money and buy something else.
    • Dell offers the Detto Intellimover when you buy a PC. I have used it twice, both times when migrating from older PC's without CD burners to a new PC. It worked well. The cable has a centronics parallel printer connection on both ends (there is now a usb version).

      It also contains a drag and drop "ftp" program for moving things back and forth between the two computers, so you could use it to synch data on two machines that were not networked.

      Finally, it moves program files as easily as you can move them from C to D on your own computer (which is why they recommend reinstalling).
  • Great (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Hi_2k (567317) on Monday November 04, 2002 @09:19AM (#4593535) Journal
    Now, get me one for linux that also includes a good windows emulator. But, more to the point, the problem has never been ease of use or cusomisibility, but a lack of specilized software that has hurt both mac and linux as a desktop OS. Just getting the neat wallpapers over wolnt convert many people. Still, a step in the direction of instant easy access to all data.
    • Re:Great (Score:4, Insightful)

      by feldsteins (313201) <<scott> <at> <scottfeldstein.net>> on Monday November 04, 2002 @10:10AM (#4593803) Homepage
      ...but a lack of specilized software...

      Specialized software is just that: specialized. Thus not widely used so I don't think there is much to be learned there.

      I think what this company is doing is very smart. Ordinary people do agonize over this issue. "New computer? What will I do with my old stuff?" Even when they got a new machine many of these people never moved their documents over because they didn't know how. They end up having a "legacy box" sitting there which only gets used for Quicken (version 2 possibly) or some such thing. Migrating data is a huge worry for average folks.

      And that's going from a Windows box to another! This product just greases the wheels - it's one less thing for the reluctang buyer to worry about so they can go ahead and make the purchase they want. Smart.

      My guess, however, would be that the product itself is an utter waste of time for anyone who knows the difference between applications and documents, where each can typically be found, and who knows how to use removable storage media of any kind.

      That is to say, millions of people will love it.
  • Make it free (Score:5, Insightful)

    by dhardman (613726) on Monday November 04, 2002 @09:20AM (#4593537) Homepage
    If I were Apple (which I am not) I'd have this bundled with 10.2 and promote the living daylights out of it. This is the type of tool that PC users have been waiting for. This is one of those rare software applications that would be worth it's weight in gold to the OS company to take under it's corporate wing.
    • Blockquoth the poster:

      If I were Apple (which I am not) I'd have this bundled with 10.2 and promote the living daylights out of it.

      The majority of Apple's customers right now are still first-time buyers and existing owners. There are more "switchers" every day, but as a percentage of the overall customer base, they're still pretty puny. As such, it would be a huge waste of money to include this package with every single new Mac.

      If it was software alone, then maybe it would work, but not if it requires a special cable...

    • Free with a new Mac (Score:5, Interesting)

      by alispguru (72689) <bane@g[ ]com ['st.' in gap]> on Monday November 04, 2002 @12:12PM (#4594178) Journal
      If I were Apple, I'd sell this as a "free switcher kit" - free as in 100% rebate when purchased along with a new Mac. Apple does rebate programs like this all the time, so the support structures are already in place.
  • Very nice (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Omkar (618823)
    Tools like this can help shake MS's Windows monopoly. When people can move to different OSs easily, and work with people of different OSs, differences in quality will finally start to drive decisions.
  • Apple's next step (Score:2, Insightful)

    by steve.m (80410)
    A better move would be for Apple to sell cheaper Mac's - I can't afford an iBook and I don't want an iMac or an eMac:

    I want a Mac about the size of a SPARCclassic, with a fast 3D card, a dvd+burner and all the rest of the Apple goodness, but with no monitor. I've got my own perfectly good 17" sony. Why can't I get one of those!
    • Re:Apple's next step (Score:5, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 04, 2002 @09:36AM (#4593613)
      Oh cmon, I'm tired of people complaining about how expensive Macs are. I'm a Marine, I earn below the minimum wage, in fact well below the poverty line. I take home $2012 each month after taxes. With that, I have to pay ~$1000 (USD - Yen rate fluctuates) plus food, gas, adsl etc and provide for my wife and 2 kids. Yet I can afford an ibook, and old PC, and just ordered an iMac for the wife. They are not that expensive, if you just manage your money and save for a while. I'm sure someone in the IT industry could do better than me ;)
      • Sure, I /could/ afford a Mac; but, as the parent to your post implied, I'd be paying for extra stuff I don't need. If they sold G4s without a monitor, RAM, hard disc or CD-drive, they could make them (say) £200 cheaper and it's a lot more likely I'd buy one. As it is, it's much more cost effective for me to buy a new bare-bones PC and move most of my existing hardware over to it. Of course, not everyone wants to shunt hardware around; but, as this story shows, Apple wants to encourage Windows users to switch platforms. Selling bare-bones Macs aimed at technically competent Wintel users certainly wouldn't hurt that effort.
        • Congratulations, you are not in Apple's target market of people who want a machine that "just works". Move along now, this machine is not for you.

          Even technical users sometimes just want the damn thing to work.

          • Re:Apple's next step (Score:3, Interesting)

            by darien (180561)
            Oh, I assure you, I'd love a computer that "just worked." And I'm not saying Apple should stop selling Macs that "just work" straight out of the box. I'm just commenting that, although a new Mac may not cost all that much more than a new PC, if you already have a PC (and a screwdriver), the cost differential can be far greater.

            As for Apple's "target market": OS X is clearly intended to appeal to the tech-savvy as well as the idiot majority; and if you've ever opened up a G4 you'll know it was definitely designed to be easily upgraded with industry standard components. So it seems a bit harsh simply to say the Mac is "not for me." Their marketing may not be currently focusing on people like me, but the machine itself is by no means a bad fit.

            A poster below says I can buy a "bare-bones" G4; maybe I'm just being dim, but the minimum spec I can choose on the Apple website seems to be a dual 867MHz with 256Mb, a 60Gb HD, DVD/CD-RW drive and no monitor. Total cost: £1,348.99. Have I missed something? All I'd want is maybe a single 700MHz G4 with none of that stuff (well, perhaps a very small hard disc and a tiny amount of RAM, just so it starts up out of the box). Based on the price of the eMac, I'd expect it to cost maybe £750.

            (Which, incidentally, is how much Dell are charging for a complete new P4 2GHz system with 256Mb, 40Gb, DVD/CD-RW drive AND a 19" monitor.)
    • Re:Apple's next step (Score:4, Informative)

      by weez75 (34298) on Monday November 04, 2002 @09:39AM (#4593634) Homepage
      Just hold tight until Wednesday. Apple is releasing new iBooks and TiBooks. The new iBooks will start at $999 and TiBooks at $2299. They'll both get quicker processors and in some cases larger harddrives. No Superdrives this time around so you might have to wait to burn DVDs.

    • Re:Apple's next step (Score:3, Informative)

      by BlueGecko (109058)
      I want a Mac about the size of a SPARCclassic, with a fast 3D card, a dvd+burner and all the rest of the Apple goodness, but with no monitor. I've got my own perfectly good 17" sony. Why can't I get one of those!
      You do know that any monitor can be used with a Mac, right? Even my PowerBook has VGA via an adaptor provided with the machine. Beyond that, if you cannot afford the current model you want, just buy a used one a generation back. You should be able to get a SuperDrive model for about $1300-$1400, which you're not going to convince me is that much more than a well-built equivalently priced PC.
      A better move would be for Apple to sell cheaper Mac's - I can't afford an iBook and I don't want an iMac or an eMac:
      iBooks start at $1199 and will be lowered to $999 tomorrow if the rumors are true. How much cheaper do you want, exactly?
    • by toupsie (88295) on Monday November 04, 2002 @10:50AM (#4593976) Homepage
      BMW. What's up with those snotty Germans? I really want one of their M-Series cars in the form factor of a VW Bug with a 1000 CD-Disc Changer & MP3 Player w/ OGG support (Fraunhofer can stick it! Snotty Germans!), corinthian leather and all the rest of that German goodness (Can you say that?). I've got my own tires from my old car but those arrogant sausage eaters won't sell me a Beemer without tires. Why can't I get one of those!? Why do I have to pay the tire tax?

      BMW is never going to have a large market share if they don't let customers buy the cars the way they want. They will just be a niche car company selling expensive cars to really arrogant, snotty people that think they are superior to everyone else. Plus I hear their owner likes to wear black all the time.

    • You can hang external monitors off of $999 iBooks (as pointed out by others) and the towers if you really cannot imagine being without your 17" monitor. What many people don't realize is that it can be possible to hang a different monitor off your old CRT iMac or the eMac. Why you would want to do this is a different question, since the internal displays are pretty reasonable... I know for sure that the older CRT iMacs had a standard VGA cable buried in there. When a buddy of mine got the first variety of iMac in 1998, we hung a 21" monitor and it drove it very nicely. Of course, it looks like crap since your formerly sleek computer is in pieces, but if you have a nice monitor around, and don't mind a desk that looks like a tornado hit it and a voided warranty, it may be worth doing. The eMac doesn't have to be disassembled to get external video- it has its own little external mini-VGA port. It can only drive external monitors at the same resolution as the internal monitor, though. 17" monitors can be nice, but the eMac display is pretty nice, and the price is pretty good- check out LowEndMac's various pages: eMac deals [lowendmac.com], flat panel iMac deals [lowendmac.com] and CRT iMac deals [lowendmac.com] and of course Dealmac [dealmac.com] and the Dealmac basement [dealmac.com] if you are trying to get a good price.

      Wanting the Superdrive definitely cuts down on the opprtunity for a great deal, but I see an eMac refurb G4/800, 256/60/SuperDrive for $1,399 which is pretty impressive for writing DVD stuff.
  • How about.... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by ZoneGray (168419)
    If they want to make it easier to switch, all they have to do is drop the price 50%.
    • Re:How about.... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Daniel Dvorkin (106857) on Monday November 04, 2002 @09:48AM (#4593681) Homepage Journal
      They drop the priced 50%, they go from generally decent profits and occasional losses to big losses all the time. Sales would go up, but not fast enough to get them out of the rut they were in during the Amelio days -- they were selling lots of machines and had a viable long-term stragegy, but people didn't buy Macs because quarter after quarter of red ink had Wall Street convinced that Apple was going out of business soon and so a Mac purchase would be wasted money.

      Also, a lot of the price premium you pay goes into R&D (vs. the "Windows tax" you pay when you buy a new PC from just about any major maker, which goes straight into Microsoft's PR and legal departments.) The reason Apple's software is "insanely great" -- and their hardware, if not i.g., is pretty damn good -- is because they spend the time and money (especially the money) to do things right.

      Yes, yes, Linux has accomplished great things with a largely open, low-cost development model. But there are a few viable ways to develop great software -- open source is one (although it's worth noting that an awful lot of Linux goodness comes from paid developers) and real corporate R&D is another; perhaps the best model is what Apple's doing, which is combining the two. The MS way, which involves a complete lack of real R&D and a team of developers which seems dedicated mostly to ripping off other people's work, is not one of these ways.

      Before you write this off as mindless anti-MS, pro-Apple propaganda, consider this: I was one of the very few who did switch from PC to Mac during the Amelio years. I did so because I realized just how bad MS software (which I'd been using for years) was getting, and I decided that I didn't mind paying a few more bucks if it got me a computer that did what I wanted it to, when I wanted it to, with a minimum of fuss. And I've never regretted that decision.
  • by falser (11170) on Monday November 04, 2002 @09:22AM (#4593551) Homepage
    Honestly this doesn't sound like the kind of advertarticle that appeals to the Slashdot crowd. It's fairly simple to change background images, email settings and so on - I don't know anyone who's too lazy to do that. And I imagine many people around here do as I and use a fileserver to store their important information (who trusts their desktop computer?).
    • Ah, but ease-of-use products like this are exactly the type of thing that sells.

      Sure, you could duplicate it with a crossover cable, a shell script or two, and an ftp server, but that's not the point. The point is that something like this appeals to the broad segment of the computer-using population that is incapable of generating such a setup themselves, and is equally unlikely to find the freeware equivalent on the web which we'll imagine is named 'desKtopKopier' or 'Klone' or the totally descriptive 'Imperiator'.

      I'm pretty damn good at creating search queries, and I still have a hell of a time finding simple little applications online of this sort - the kind of thing that I could create myself, but would rather save myself the time.

      Marketting money is great fun. Not so sure about the name 'Move2Mac', either, but whatever.
  • Moving to a Mac (Score:3, Informative)

    by catwh0re (540371) on Monday November 04, 2002 @09:22AM (#4593554)
    This software has actually been out for a while.

    In addition to this software apple has the following guide on how to move common settings over to a mac should it not be intuitive already. Guide to Switching to a Mac [apple.com].

  • by swb (14022) on Monday November 04, 2002 @09:23AM (#4593555)
    What about my mouse settings? Acceleration, double-click speed, button assignm...er, nevermind.
  • About the only thing Linux users can offer to ease the move for Windows users is a free clue stick beating... :^)

    (Moderators: That was a joke.)
  • by HiQ (159108) on Monday November 04, 2002 @09:27AM (#4593571)
    Is there anything like this in the works for the penguin masses?

    Sure dude, It's called a brain...
  • I believe some distros, Lindows for instance, will offer to transfer your personal data when you stick in the CD before installation. I know one of them will copy across personal documents, email (settings and mail itself), bookmarks and so on.

    This could be made a lot slicker however, for instance copying across chat program settings, proxy configuration and so on. I was going to suggest Wine integration, so your Windows apps appear in the Linux menus, but thinking about it Windows normally has so much garbage on it I wouldn't want that, and anyway Wine works better when apps are installed into it.

    Nice idea from Apple, although methinks the real problem isn't transferring background pictures, the real problem for them is applications. Most windows users have 1 or 2 oddball apps that they simply MUST have, on top of all the usual suspects. I've met people who won't consider anything that doesn't run one particular brand of scrabble game for instance, and most Windows users often have hobbies or even jobs based around such things as well. When Apple figure out how to get Windows apps working on MacOS (don't think it'll happen myself) then this will be more than just a gimmick.

    • by yerricde (125198) on Monday November 04, 2002 @09:45AM (#4593666) Homepage Journal

      When Apple figure out how to get Windows apps working on MacOS (don't think it'll happen myself)

      Connectix has already figured this out. Buy the Virtual PC 5 emulator for Mac OS [connectix.com].

      • No, virtual PC doesn't count, it's slow, doesn't integrate very well with the host environment, and of course you still need Windows. That last point is the killer - why should you have to pay for a copy Windows just so you can run your old apps slowly with virtually no integration? And of course you have to pay for Virtual PC too. You might as well use Windows. Rules it out for business use as well of course.
        • You misunderstand the PURPOSE of VirtualPC. It's good for slowly weaning you off of your Microsoft addiction, and getting you addicted to MacOS X applications instead.

          The other purpose is to run those niggling little programs that the Accounting and IT trolls insist on installing. Let them plop into the VPC pseudocomputer, and leave them inactivated.

          Virtual PC is a boon to Mac heads stuck with clueless, yet gullible IT departments like mine.
    • Connectix' Virtual PC will run all those little, random windows applications very nicely.

      Just about the only thing you can't do on Virtual PC is play very heavy games- but you're doing that on your Mac natively, right?
  • by andy_geek (522404) on Monday November 04, 2002 @09:29AM (#4593582) Homepage
    As a long time Mac user, I recently convinced my wife to take the plunge and switch from W2K to a shiny new iBook. While she loves the form and function of the 'book, and she loves how all the apps work, migration of her data was a beee-otch! This software really wouldn't have done anything to resolve the big issues: moving calendars and email. I was able to to this through several machinations because I (huzzah!) am a trained IT professional (and I'm used to dealing with M$ making it as difficult as possible to move from PC-to-Mac). But if she had to do this on her own, or more-to-the-point, if all of the other mom-and-pop's out there who Apple is targeting with their "Switch" campaign had to do it alone, she would have booted the iBook across the room and gone back to her namby-pamby W2K box.

    Apple really needs to address this: they've done a good job stating the case as to WHY a "switch" would be in user's interests: they damn sure need to make this process simple, bulletproof and COMPLETE, before they find a lot of people switching their sorry keisters back to Windows faster than you can say "Blue Screen of Death".

    OK.
    • by Masem (1171) on Monday November 04, 2002 @10:36AM (#4593925)
      There was a writeup of the Move2Mac program in the latest MacAddict magazine, and it specifically mentions that it doesn't just do file transfers, it also tries to transfer as much as it reasonably can from Outlook, OE, or some of the other more popular Win mail clients into the Mac equivalent, as well as internet bookmarks and cookies. Handling the email/PIM information is probably much more important to most than making sure the background picture is still the same, and that's part of this M2M program's selling point.
  • If i've spent £1000+ on a uberPC with everything, I dont want to have to switch hardware to run MacOS. Apple will never seduce Windows users while their investment in hardware cannot be transported over.

    We all know that M$ is an evil monopoly but I think the reason why they're a monopoly is because Apple refused to compete with microsoft on the commodity PC platform. For years microsoft had no decent rival on platform that brought computing to the masses. OS2? I was a joke at best. Apple had (and has) decent software, but until they grow some balls and decide to play with the big boys.

    We see the effect and penetration that Linux is developing on the desktop in the Red Hat and SuSe form, and that is fighting against the established monopoly. This proves that there is, and probably always has been, a market for a real alternative to Windows for existing windows users, but which has been left sadly vacant for years. Had Apple decided to stop making hardware and just sold software, perhaps we would not be in the trouble we are now in regarding MS vs DOJ etc.

    All it takes for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.
    Microsoft may be evil, but Apple could be accused of having done nothing to stop it, when perhaps they were the only ones who could have.
    • by andy_geek (522404) on Monday November 04, 2002 @09:38AM (#4593630) Homepage
      I think you're mistaken on this. Yes, your hard-earned 1000 quid went into that box, but we both know it'll be obselete within a year (oh, quit moaning: it's true!). Computer buyers are becoming savvy enough to know this (I know, not ALL of them, but many of them). Therefore, I don't think it's a stretch that some people will think: "Hmm, I gotta blow a buttload of money on an item that'll last me about as long as an ice cream sandwich - how about I get one that does stuff better, looks better, and doesn't crash?" No, we're not talking about scads of people using this logic, but some do. Apple is beyond trying to win back substantial marketshare from WinTel (face it, they lost), but modest gains are suitable, and the types of users who might think this way are precisely the people Apple wants as a user community.

      I am certain Apple is happy to have an idiot like me pontificating about what THEY want. :)
      • "Hmm, I gotta blow a buttload of money on an item that'll last me about as long as an ice cream sandwich - how about I get one that does stuff better, looks better, and doesn't crash?"

        Everyone that I know (Mac and PC users alike) are reacting to the short lifetime of computers by buying the cheapest box possible. For Windows users this is buying the bottom of the line Dell, for Linux users this assembling a box out of used pieces or even buying that Walmart PC, and for Mac users it's used iMacs or refusing to upgrade. (I know a ton of non-techie Mac users who refuse to upgrade to OS X which boggles me)

        People want a cheaper computer and the first company to make a decent $200 box (Sony? Panasonic? other?) will sell a million.

    • OS2? I was a joke at best

      Please to meet you, Mr OS2. I'm sure you find better as a human rather than an OS trying to compete with Microsoft. I like your self-flagellating philosophy, something that /.tters might as well learn.

      Tell me, was the competition *that* hard?

  • Why use USB when one can use 10/100Mbs Ethernet? It goes a lot faster than USB and all you would need to sell is a cheap X-over cable.

    • Because most Mom & Pop PC users will not have an ethernet interface. A special USB cable to allow host-to-host is cheaper than bundling an ethernet card, which a lot of users would not know how to fit anyway.
      • Well a lot of "Mom & Pop PC users" may not have USB either.
        Have you ever transfered the contents of an entire drive using USB? That 12 Mb/s spec for USB that I see bantied about is a load of horse crap. Before the drive contents get shuttled across "Mom & Pop" will be a few years older, and at their age I think it would be worth it to them to splurge on the $10 Ethernet card.

        • Re:USB?? (Score:3, Informative)

          Well a lot of "Mom & Pop PC users" may not have USB either
          All new macs have USB, though most have Ethernet also, an honest to goodness 10Base-T port (anyone else remember AAUI? lets make it harder to connect to Ethernet, but easier to connect my Mac to that 10Base-5 line that I run...). PCs of the last couple years are more likely to have USB than Ethernet. UHCI controllers are damn cheap, and have come standard on the motherboard of every PC I've seen in the last 3 years.

          To use the (self ironic) Pearl Jam song title, "This is not for you". This is for folks who do not know that the image that is their desktop is a a bitmap and how to convert it to a mac image file and put it in a place to be used as the Mac desktop. This is for folks who don't know where their Windows desktop directory is and how to copy stuff to their mac home directory, where they also don't know its location. This is for folks who don't know what linefeeds are and how to convert them. (Hmm, just came over me, does OS X use classic Mac linefeeds, or UNIX style?) This is for folks who don't know where their bookmarks file is on IE and how to convert that over to their shiny new mac. Most importantly, this is for folks who don't care and don't really care to learn. They just want stuff done. By and large, the folks on Slashdot like doing stuff like this, and like learning. Anytime there comes a device that obviates the need for learning, they scratch their heads and wonder "why bother? I can do . . ." yes, you can do. But this is not for you.

          Unfortunately the doc is light on the technical side. USB only allows one controller and one host, everything else is a passive device. I wonder how they get this stuff to work, my guess is the PC is the real controller, and the hardware fakes some stuff out to make the mac export its hard drive as a target device, and essentially copy stuff to the new drive. Anyone with more details?
  • by mumblestheclown (569987) on Monday November 04, 2002 @09:41AM (#4593647)
    If apple had the sense god gave a marshmallow, it would make the migration software free.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 04, 2002 @09:42AM (#4593651)
    > Is there anything like this in the works for the penguin masses?

    Yes! It's called dual boot. Mount the windows partition, and everything is there!!
  • by splateagle (557203) on Monday November 04, 2002 @09:43AM (#4593658)
    judging by the posts so far most of you are missing the point here: this isn't aimed at those of us who could cope with the (ahem) complexities of copying files onto a CDR, it's aimed at Mr. and Mrs. Joe User - people who just want their computer to work, but bought a Windozer first time 'round.

    These people are Apple's target audience with the whole Switch campaign (of which this gizmo is a devlopment). Chances are that if you're the kind of user who can do this for yourself (and lets face it copying files ain't rocket science) you'll already have made the switch (assuming you're not a: happy with what you've got and/or b: convinced that the hardware is too expensive... but I'm not going *there*)
  • Good luck!

    Pause...

    I just checked and NOPE it won't migrate Outlook crap. I didn't think so. Those files are a nightmare.

    From their faq.

    Does Move2Mac migrate email?
    Move2Mac will move and convert the address book and POP3 settings for Outlook Express on the PC to Mac OS X 10.2 Mail.

    Outlook Express DOES NOT MEAN Outlook 2000!
  • by Observer (91365) on Monday November 04, 2002 @09:44AM (#4593663)
    Surely MS-Office for Windows and MS-Office for Mac can interoperate without trouble?

    (Ducks and runs)
  • I would believe 99.5% of Slashdot readers handle the task much better, faster and with more choices without the softare.

    Select the music, photos, files and folders to move, so your new Mac isn't cluttered with unwanted files. Eliminates the hassles. Transferring data to a new computer can be tricky. Move2Mac does it safely and securely, freeing you from any hassles.

    I don't know, but based on the marketing speech, there is not much "intelligence" in this software. The reason why it sounds easy, safe and secure for the Joe Average, is probably the fact that it is marketed as a software created just for this "single task" and it is therefore much more easy to buy and understand it.

    • by glh (14273) on Monday November 04, 2002 @09:59AM (#4593743) Homepage Journal
      I don't know, but based on the marketing speech, there is not much "intelligence" in this software. The reason why it sounds easy, safe and secure for the Joe Average, is probably the fact that it is marketed as a software created just for this "single task" and it is therefore much more easy to buy and understand it.

      Yes, the software is definitely for Joe Average. However, that is what sells. Things that are simple and easy and don't require any intelligence on the part of the user. That is why Linux has such a hard time being adopted by the AOL population-- they're not L33T or anywhere close to it.

      For instance, I had to explain to my mother-in-law the other day what a web browser was as opposed to "AOL". She just couldn't understand the concept that AOL provides the internet connection and that she could use any "browser" that she wanted (something wasn't showing up right on a site she was using so I told her to try it with IE). The thing was, she didn't WANT to know anything outside her AOL sandbox. All she wanted was for her "pictures to work". On that same note, I think this mac switch software is ingenius! If it weren't for the high price of Mac's, it may be the "silver bullet".

  • by stinkwinkerton (609110) on Monday November 04, 2002 @09:48AM (#4593683)
    I used it when I got my laptop to copy all my mail, dialup, desktop settings to my laptop. It ended up catching all that crud I always forget. Laptop and desktop both have the same "feel" now at about 1/4 the time for a setup (win2k to WinXp.) No, it didn't copy games and applications, but it copied the settings for some if not most of the apps... I can't remember if it copied my PC Anywhere stuff but I think it did. It definately copied all my playlists and MP3's. Just tell it what you want moved or not then let it do its thing. (Downside: USB1 was slower than molasses in January.)
  • Sounds cool... I'm a pc-user, and I use Linux on it... Does this software work then or is it just like the PC-virus thing... They actually mean MS-Windows but they call it PC.

    Another thing... It WOULD be cool to have an import thing for MS-Windows users who are installing Linux on their PC. Don't need new hardware so that's alot cheaper :-) That's one of the big hurdle's to switch... If I switch to a Mac and don't like it, I can't install MS-windows (I CAN install Linux, I know, but usually that's not where people come from) on it.

    There is actually some work done by the Mandrake people... You can import the fonts (one of those, 'dmn, Linux is buttugly' features) from your Windows partition.

  • This is probably mostly for migrating your small office over? It sure can't be aimed at individuals in the slashdot audience; who here's intimidated by moving desktop images, you know? (Who even cares?) But I could see it if you were the IT guy, trying to make the move for your office.

    This'd go in your grab-bag of tools with other utilities. The licensing packs hint at who they're really intending to sell to, too; it starts at a 5-user pack.

  • Penguin masses (Score:5, Insightful)

    by wheany (460585) <wheany+sd@iki.fi> on Monday November 04, 2002 @09:52AM (#4593711) Homepage Journal
    Is there anything like this in the works for the penguin masses?
    It would never get done. First of all: Nothing on Linux is easy. Second: When when you finally decide something like this needs to be done, you'll spend the next 2 years arguing about open formats and extendability just in case you need to migrate from Linux to BSD in the future. Third: You'll probably name it something like Gnuve2Gnuc...
  • Of course, with Linux - unlike the Mac - you can
    install it on a new partition and mount your
    old PC stuff inside Linux. No need to copy it to
    the Linux side ever.
  • Switching (Score:4, Interesting)

    by ACK!! (10229) on Monday November 04, 2002 @10:02AM (#4593763) Journal
    This utility does seem like it would help standard issue windows desktop users who have no real idea what they need to back up or move over to their Mac.

    However, more than one person, pointed out the obvious. If Apple slashed its prices by say even $500 dollars on the big boy G4s and Powerbooks they would get a lot more converts. I can see paying a bit more for a mac but the laptop prices are just outrageous in my opinion. Not even comparing them to bargain basement priced PCs but to Dells for example and you have to sit back and scratch your head. They are good, sure. But are they that damn good?

    Honestly, I am not trying to troll on this one.

    What about a Macintosh Powerbook or a G4 makes them worth that much of an apple premium?

    I want to see a Switcher price campaign.

    ________________________________________________ _
    • Re:Switching (Score:2, Insightful)

      by bpbond (246836)
      >What about a Macintosh Powerbook or a G4 makes them worth that much of an apple premium?

      That's a reasonable question, but not in the context of this thread...the whole "Switch" campaign, and this software, is aimed at users whole will generally switch to a iMac or iBook. And those machines are actually pretty decent deals, especially compared to the pricey "pro" line.

      And to a poster above...no, obviously this program won't transfer your custom auto-connect scripts. Duh. If you can do that, I bet you can get those puppies over yourself.
    • Re:Switching (Score:4, Insightful)

      by CyberBry (196935) on Monday November 04, 2002 @11:38AM (#4594100) Homepage
      I would have totally agreed with all you people saying that Macs are too expensive, before I actually used one. I now own an iBook (along with my WinXP and FreeBSD boxen - it plays nicely on the network) and am considering getting a tiBook soon. After using a Mac for a few months, you realize that what's true with almost everything in life is true with computers: You get what you pay for.

      Regardless of how much cheaper/faster/beiger/etc that PCs are, I've yet to meet one person who genuinely enjoyed using one as much as people who use Macs, which I think is the point most people are missing. Sure my iBook is more expensive, slower, has a smaller screen, etc, than my desktop or my schoolmates with Windows or Linux laptops, but, they're the ones always huddled around my screen and coming to use my laptop to do things because they prefer it. That's the point.
  • by Spencerian (465343) on Monday November 04, 2002 @10:04AM (#4593775) Homepage Journal
    My guess is that at least a third of all current PC users have systems with computers without USB ports or Windows 98 (the minimum Microsoft OS that supports USB). This product would be useless to them, since, before USB, there was practically no common interface options available between Macs and PCs. PCs had parallel and serial ports, and Macs before 1998 had SCSI and their DIN-8 serial ports (which are commonly used now for PS/2 style connectors on PCs).

    Older PCs don't have CD burners, either. So, to get your data from an older PC, you'd need at least one of the following, in order of ease:

    - An Ethernet card (connect by Windows file sharing between Mac, which all have Ethernet, and PC)
    - Windows 98 or greater (if USB is available)
    - A CD burner
    - The Internet (e-mail some files in small amounts to yourself or a friend)
  • ...assuming OS X has an ftp server:

    ftp>ftp my_pc
    ftp>cd C:\
    ftp>tar -cvf my_shit.tar my_shit
    ftp>bin
    ftp>hash (i love hash marks, OK?)
    ftp>lcd /usr/me
    ftp>get my_shit.tar
    ....
    ftp>bye
    my_mac>cd /usr/me
    my_mac>tar -xvf my_shit.tar

  • From mac to pc? I would probably think not...
  • ``helps PC users move many of their files, settings and even background pictures to a new Mac running Mac OS X 10.2. Sounds nice. Is there anything like this in the works for the penguin masses?''
    There's no need to. Linux and the *BSDs happily read your files from your DOS/Windows/OtherOS partitions.

    <Offtopic> /. seems slow today...is this a result of the server move?
    </Offtopic>

    ---
    For every complex problem, there is a solution that is simple, neat,
    and wrong.
    -- H. L. Mencken
  • Carry? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by jxs2151 (554138) on Monday November 04, 2002 @11:19AM (#4594063) Homepage
    I saw this: and will carry it in their retail stores. and immediately thought that Apple should let the PC users 'carry' their PC right into the retail store and have Apple employees do the 'changeroo' right then and there. As further incentive Apple could offer a pittance to take the PC off of the customers hands.

    What a plan!!!

Nobody said computers were going to be polite.

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