Mac OS X 10.1

OS X 10.1 update boasts strong native software support and a host of additional features.

Two big features that Mac OS 9 users enjoyed but that were inexplicably left out of the original 10.0 release were DVD playback and the ability to burn CDs easily from within the Finder. Burning from the Finder has now been added to 10.1 (including DVD burning) and the DVD player sports a new look and plays back movies without missing a beat.

The Finder has been improved in several ways. Long file names can wrap around to a second line, in Column View columns can be resized, the window toolbar can be customised in more ways and, most importantly, the Finder is more responsive. As a whole, 10.1 feels a little faster than 10.0, especially when opening applications and using menus. Stability and performance when running Classic (OS 9 and earlier) applications under OS X has been improved.

The Dock can now be moved from the bottom of the screen to either the left or right, applications like iTunes are bundled, you can select how many recent items show in the apple menu, and the 10.1 menu bar can display icons for battery life, AirPort signal strength, audio, display and modem connection settings right next to the time display. Something also much welcomed is Mac OS X 10.1's support for networking with Windows networks without the need for third-party software. There are now over 1400 programs written to take advantage of OS X's benefits, with companies like Adobe reportedly holding off their new OS X-savvy titles until the release of 10.1.

10.1 has a suggested retail price of $229 for new users, but existing Mac OS X users can upgrade using the standard Mac OS up-to-date program for $19.95. A free instant up-to-date upgrade kit for existing Mac OS X users was available until 31 October, and may still be if stocks are available at resellers.

Mac OS X 10.1

Apple; Price: $229 for new users/$19.95 for upgrade; Phone: 13 3622; URL: www.apple.com.au

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