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Author Topic: Theoretical MacBook Air Situation (no optical drive)
CoffeeSmack
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Icon 5 posted January 16, 2008 19:22      Profile for CoffeeSmack         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Ok, so here is a question my brother-in-law had about a possible situation one might encounter with the new MacBook Air (it also happens to be a variation on Moi's earlier question about backing up a game CD):

Suppose you go traveling with said MacBook Air, but for the sake of traveling light (ahem) you don't bring any accessories/peripherals included the external optical drive. How do you play a game that requires the original disc to be in the non-existent optical drive? (My bro-in-law's example was Rise of Nations, FYI)

I know using a virtual drive is how a lot of PC users get around this, whether the reasons are legitimate or dubious. However, I think that since the whole point of the Air is to be as slimmed down as possible, this presents a very real problem for a portion of its potential users.

Is there a virtual drive (or similar) option for Mac users that I'm not aware of?

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maximile

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Icon 1 posted January 16, 2008 20:25      Profile for maximile   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I've not come across a game that requires the CD for a long time, but I'm not a big gamer. For the ones that do, you can try using Disk Utility to make a disk image. I think it works about half the time. You could also try looking for a no-CD crack. Or you could put the CD into a nearby computer with wireless and use the shared drive feature.

Remember that the GPU in the MacBook Air isn't suited for gaming - any serious gamer is likely to want to get a MBP instead. I don't think too many people will be too worried about this.

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TheMoMan
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Icon 1 posted January 17, 2008 03:02      Profile for TheMoMan         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
__________________________ Almost from the beginning Apple has held on to the belief that the Mac line is for Business use and then gaming. My biggest worry is what about file corruption and reinstal?

I have not studied the specs on this new machine but what would be wrong with burning a ROM with an OS and running the machine from a port. All files could be kept in a SD type card. Now how fast would that one boot up. Kind of reminds me of the old TI 99/4A

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Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.


Benjamin Franklin,

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Callipygous
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Icon 1 posted January 17, 2008 04:36      Profile for Callipygous     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
If you have Toast, using it to mount a disk image works in many more instances than Disk Utility. It's not a big deal however, as if games really matter to you, you'll either have a PC or a console.

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"Knowledge is Power. France is Bacon" - Milton

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DuoDoctor
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Icon 1 posted January 17, 2008 18:55      Profile for DuoDoctor     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
This question popped into my head today as well! One of my pet peeves is an app that requires the use of a physical disk to run. I have Tiger Woods '08 that does this and I understand that making a disk image (using diskutility) does not do the trick. Has any one had any success recently with Cider aided apps? I hate to scratch and ruin this disk.
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CoffeeSmack
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Icon 1 posted January 17, 2008 21:01      Profile for CoffeeSmack         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I'm sorry to say I've tried the disk-to-DMG (disk image) trick, with various programs used to mount the image, but to no success. I believe I tried it once with Sim City 4 - I own it, but I didn't feel like swapping it with the Call of Duty disc which I play most of the time.

I understand that this device isn't geared for gaming, and that not all games/applications require a disc in a drive, and that this situation really only affects a fraction of the people who would own the Air in the first place.

But still: To me it's a very valid situation worth considering. Imagine that all computers no longer came with optical drives. The only reason for this would be because a feasible alternative to the optical drive is available. The Air would be an early adopter of that format. However, for now, how many people are going to get on a plane, for instance, thinking they're all set and then... "Oh, crap, I forgot."

Don't get me wrong, the Air is certainly an interesting device, and I'm not even really criticizing it. It's just, well, different. And new different things always give people some technological indigestion even if it represents innovation.

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dragonman97

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Icon 1 posted January 17, 2008 21:21      Profile for dragonman97   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Folks...I'm not one to rejoice about the loss of an optical drive...but you can buy an USB CD-ROM drive for ~$20: (or DVD for ~$60)
http://www.buy.com/retail/product.asp?sku=206775035

That will surely do anything and everything one would need...including helping to reload a system. Mind you, the best protection against a b0rked machine is to have an external HD and back up with SuperDuper or CCC. The little birdies tell me that Intel Macs can boot to these just the same as prior machines to Firewire. I've seen the Firewire version of this in action, and have been duly impressed!

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Callipygous
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Icon 1 posted January 18, 2008 04:37      Profile for Callipygous     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Ah dman but the Air does not have a FireWire port and as far as I know this does not work over USB. You of course also won't be able to use it in FireWire Target mode. These for me are bigger drawbacks than the lack of an optical drive.

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"Knowledge is Power. France is Bacon" - Milton

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dragonman97

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Icon 1 posted January 18, 2008 06:31      Profile for dragonman97   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Callipygous:
Ah dman but the Air does not have a FireWire port and as far as I know this does not work over USB. You of course also won't be able to use it in FireWire Target mode. These for me are bigger drawbacks than the lack of an optical drive.

You didn't see the 'little birdies' bit...I've had many people tell me that SuperDuper and/or CCC backups on USB can be booted into on Intel Macs. I have never personally tested it, but one of the individuals who has claimed this /better/ know. If he's wrong, he needs to be smacked around a bit.

I quickly Googled, and didn't find much helpful info...though:
http://uneasysilence.com/archive/2006/09/7664/

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There are three things you can be sure of in life: Death, taxes, and reading about fake illnesses online...

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TheMoMan
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Icon 1 posted January 18, 2008 11:31      Profile for TheMoMan         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
________________________ Lets see back in late 1998 when the first iMac came into customers hands. WHAT NO FLOPPY DRIVE!!!!! and the USB ports could not be booted from, there was great knashing of collective teeth. They sold alot of iMacs with out floppy drives and with out being able to boot from a floppy, by the way as it is going it seems that with todays cameras you can only put one photo per floppy. So what did S. Jobs know then that the rest of us did not. I say wait and see. It will either sell or be like the Edsel, Mac TV. or the iMac.

Does any one remember the Lisa?

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Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.


Benjamin Franklin,

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CoffeeSmack
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Icon 1 posted January 18, 2008 13:30      Profile for CoffeeSmack         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
MoMan, that's funny, because I was one of those iMac customers... Although I didn't lament the lack of a floppy drive; I was buying the iMac (it was one of the graphite DV special editions) as an inexpensive graphic design machine for college. The truth is, except for the relatively small screen size, compared to all the 17" monitors that were on campus, the iMac did a great job. Photoshop 5.5 and Quark 4 ran swimmingly.

I wasn't worried about the floppy drive because everybody in my major used Zip disks, which were a must-have. One hundred megabytes on one disk? Wow!

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TheMoMan
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Icon 1 posted January 18, 2008 14:27      Profile for TheMoMan         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
_______________________ This is where the fun begins at one time where I worked the Quality Lab bought a Lisa. They took a production worker with no computer experiance and in two months he was making Power point like presentations, no classes just set him in front of that little hork horse and expressed what management wanted from him, its amazing what can be done if the OS doesn't get in your way.

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Benjamin Franklin,

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maximile

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Icon 1 posted January 18, 2008 14:56      Profile for maximile   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
All this talk makes me wonder... do you think Apple are giving up on optical media entirely? Do you think that Apple will never put a Blu-Ray drive into the Mac Pros?

Unlikely I guess, but with this and the Apple TV obviously geared towards eliminating a DVD player it makes me wonder.

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Dick Moore
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Icon 1 posted January 18, 2008 15:36      Profile for Dick Moore   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Mechanical anythings have always been a problem in computers, so every designer and engineer wants to get rid of as much mechanical stuff as possible. SSDs are rapidly coming on to solve HDD storage problems caused by mechanical glitches, which I believe are the majority of instances. As to optical media, for the urban business executive types who will be the majority of Air buyers, linking via wi-fi or a derivative will be just dandy -- no disks or drives need apply. Doesn't the Air basically go with Italian suits and silk ties? What do those folks care about the issues you all have raised? That's what the trolls in the IT department are for. In fact, the appeal to execs of the Air may lead to a faster general adoption of Intel Macs in the business world...
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dragonman97

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Icon 1 posted January 18, 2008 15:51      Profile for dragonman97   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
And to offer a bit of humo[u]r:
http://www.collegehumor.com/video:1797523/

[Big Grin] [Big Grin]

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There are three things you can be sure of in life: Death, taxes, and reading about fake illnesses online...

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password
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Icon 1 posted January 19, 2008 11:18      Profile for password   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
i dont know if there is a Mac version of this program, but to solve all of your problems Alcohol 120% is a disk image maker, and virtual drive manager all in one. it costs, but i do believe it is worth it.

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no my password is not username

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The Famous Druid

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Icon 1 posted January 20, 2008 13:08      Profile for The Famous Druid     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
<sings>
Anything you can do I can do better...
</sings>

Similar size, faster processor, more ports, more pixels, a DVD drive, and best of all, it runs Vista !

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If you watch 'The History Of NASA' backwards, it's about a space agency that has no manned spaceflight capability, then does low-orbit flights, then lands on the Moon.

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password
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Icon 1 posted January 20, 2008 13:46      Profile for password   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
hey, druid
hate to burst your bubble, but

VISTA IS THE MOST HORRIBLE OPERATING SYSTEM EVER TO COME OUT OF MICROSOFT!!! I WOULD MUCH RATHER USE NT!!!!!

even in all its horrific user incompatibility, vista is still infinitely better than any OS Macintosh has ever produced.

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no my password is not username

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GrumpySteen

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Icon 1 posted January 20, 2008 16:20      Profile for GrumpySteen     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
password wrote:
VISTA IS THE MOST HORRIBLE OPERATING SYSTEM EVER TO COME OUT OF MICROSOFT!!! I WOULD MUCH RATHER USE NT!!!!!

*installs Windows 3.1 with the Microsoft Bob interface on password's computer*

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Worst. Celibate. Ever.

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dragonman97

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Icon 1 posted January 20, 2008 19:51      Profile for dragonman97   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
TFD's post
=================
[20 ft./6 m]
=================
password's head


/whoosh

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There are three things you can be sure of in life: Death, taxes, and reading about fake illnesses online...

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Callipygous
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Icon 1 posted January 21, 2008 17:24      Profile for Callipygous     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
dman

you made me laugh

[Applause]

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"Knowledge is Power. France is Bacon" - Milton

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