Millions of loyal iFans held their bated breath while waiting for the release of the much-anticipated iPhone 5, but unfortunately instead of breathing a sigh of relief their expelled air was used to form their favorite curse word as they gazed on the iPhone 4S. Son of a…
Apple surprised the world, and shocked the hell out of their users, by releasing the iPhone 4S, instead of the more-anticipated iPhone 5 — but this shouldn’t have been a surprise really. The release of the iPhone 4S falls right into the typical release pattern from Apple, which also happens to coincide with the product life-cycle created by cellphone carrier contracts — two years.
The love-hate relationship that millions of computer geeks around the world have with Flash is about to change. Flash Player has gotten a makeover and released its version 11. The widely-used browser plug-in from Adobe got an overhaul, undoubtedly due to threats to its monopoly from rapidly-growing web standards competitors like HTML5, Silverlight and Java FX. Web standards coming to market is the only threat to Flash’s supremacy though, Adobe’s brainchild has also been locked out of iOS devices and has only a small foothold with Android.
With this new release of Flash Adobe seems to be forgetting the iOS lockout and other cellphone and tablet platforms, and instead is targeting high-end technology — specifically within gaming, high-end video, in-house application building and the growing 64-bit world.
One more day before Mac users can rejoice belling the all new cat. Apple releases Mac OS X, Snow Leopard tomorrow, that’s 28th of August, 2009. You may check the system requirements as laid out by Apple. For the die hard fans, there also exists an option to pre order! (However, Amazon is selling it much cheaper.)
Leopard, the current Mac OS X 10.5 is one of the most talked about operating systems available today. We’ve seen pros and newbies sticking to it and never looking back. Excellent user interface and a power packed performance makes it as an elegant performer. Apple however wants its users to get more. This quest has brought them to develop yet another release of Leopard, the Mac OS X 10.6 or what you shall better remember as Snow Leopard.
With the release date being just around the corner, we shall look at some of the features that gets the Snow Leopard up and running.
Let’s take a Snow Leopard Safari
Apple calls Snow Leopard a refined and better version of Leopard and nothing that goes into reinventing a wheel. Leopard was well known for being simple and reliable, despite a few areas which needed some concern. Apple has looked to fine tune these aspects ranging from ejecting an external drive to the size of the core applications in Snow Leopard. Some of the viable and standout changes in Snow Leopard are;
Lighter and faster – The primary focus of refining Leopard was to make it light and fast. The applications in Snow Leopard are considerably slimmed down contributing to a smaller footprint thereby saving up to 7GB of installation space. The sluggish installation time is also reduced by almost 45%. Snow Leopard has been tuned for faster booting and shutdown along with quick responsive processes and quicker wireless connectivity.
Security – System applications on Snow Leopard are built on 64-bit code. This not only ensures an enhanced performance but also offers a better security just the 64-bit apps can use better security techniques in order to protect data from malicious software and hackers.
Multi-touch framework – With Apple notebooks being standardized with multi-touch trackpads it will be possible for developers to enhance their applications using the code libraries and functions bundled in Snow Leopard on the lines of current multi-touch features available in Apple applications such as Safari, iPhoto and more. In-built feature of Snow Leopard also allows Chinese characters to be entered by just drawing the character on the multi-touch trackpad, instead of the conventional method where the user would have to enter the phonetic spelling of the Chinese character.
ZFS file system support – Leopard provided read-only features for the ZFS file system which is a combined and logical volume manager developed by Sun Microsystems. ZFS, which is a 128-bit file system was designed for high storage capacities and volume management. It is of great application in servers and workstations with multiple disk drives. For all these reasons Snow Leopard and Snow Leopard Server supports both read and write features for ZFS.
Microsoft Exchange Server support – The new improved Microsoft Exchange Server support means that mails, contacts, calendar items from Outlook can be easily accessed. Something which most of you would have been waiting for! iCal, Mail and Address Book in Snow Leopard will be enhanced with this exchange support making it business ready.
Faster Backups – Leopard introduced to the world the revolutionary Time Machine which allowed the users to take backups of their hard drives with ease. With Snow Leopard, backing up hard drives is light years ahead, with backup time being reduced by up to 50%.
Few others – Web spot is a handy feature being imported into Snow Leopard which allows zooming in on a particular section of a webpage. Snow Leopard also boasts a slick QuickTime with an improved interface of sorts. The new improved Expose in Snow Leopard enables organized grouping of multiple open windows and applications with ease. An ardent supporter of open source, Apple has also incorporated many tool kits and gizmos which are finely tuned specifically for developer’s delight.
What’s the deal?
Pre-existing Leopard users can avail a $29 upgrade to Snow Leopard, or a $49 upgrade package for a five installation family pack. For older Mac OS X users the upgrade would be available for $169, and the 5 license package can be availed for $229. (Remember, Amazon sells at 14% discount for Snow Leopard.)
“Microsoft, which doesn’t have much of a hardware presence to recoup its costs compared with Apple, is unlikely to match that price.”
Giving Apple an upper hand in this price driven market. But on the down side Snow Leopard is compatible only with Macs running on Intel chips. Power PC Mac users will have reached the end of the road with the existing Leopard OS.
The wait is almost over. Come September and the Mac users shall be ready to experience Apple’s self proclaimed “world’s most advanced operating system. Finely tuned.” This also comes at a time when Windows 7 is due to be released in October, this year. It is no secret that Apple and Microsoft are at war and only time shall reveal if Windows will fall a prey to the Snow Leopard.
Let’s talk history! Fedora was created in late 2003 as a Linux based Operating System which gives the users an admittance from anywhere in the world to the most up-to-date free and open source software with user friendliness being the key. It also aspires to the creation of a community for everyone where developers across the globe can contribute with their knowledge and make the OS a superior coded platform. Fedora is sponsored by Red Hat and is built over the Linux kernel which is again supported by the Fedora project.
There was a security breach during the development stages of the project and this was the main reason of Cambridge, the code name for Fedora 10, coming into the gossip way before its launch. But the security breach was well handled by the developers and the result was the successful launch of Fedora 10. The new version is a modification over its earlier version with improved open source security, appliance building technologies and virtualization. The impediment in the release was due to the security breach at the Red Hat Fedora infrastructure but it still has the potential to become the most widely used Linux distribution installation software.
A few tools that have been worked on and can help it stand ahead of the previous release;
Paul Frields, Fedora’s project leader said,
If you look at our original schedule we were supposed to release around Oct. 28 and here we are, four weeks later than what we expected. During that time, our infrastructure team nuked our infrastructure and rebuilt the entire thing.
Though the reason for the failure in the security breach at Fedora project has still been kept under the cover, the company claims to make its full report available to everyone in a short time. Some significant improvements that have been incorporated in the new version are:
The expansion plans of appliance options with the inclusion of the new Appliance Tools Technology which enables the proper building up of Fedora based appliances. The software developers use appliance tools such as AOS (Appliance Operating System) and ACT (Appliance Creation Tool). The creation of virtual software appliance, bare metal hardware appliance and Live CD based appliance would be a possibility with the usage of the above mentioned tool.
A conscious branding endeavor has also been attempted in sync with the “Intel-inside” logo. The Fedora Remix logo can also be used for clear identification of Fedora’s appliance tools.
For the benefit of the users to view any technical defect in the system configuration, a new security audit tool viz. secTool has been launched. The tool also has the capability to perform own security tests as and when required by the user.
VirtRemote Install is a tool which will enhance the virtualization capabilities and the administration of virtual machines on real hosts would become unproblematic.
Fedora has always kept Linux users happy with the assorted tools and applications. A yet another power-packed release, though with hint of “controversy“!