23rd January 2008

Review: Leopard (Mac OS X 10.5)

Mac OS X 10.5 LeopardWell it’s been just over a month that I successfully upgraded my Laptop (17″ G4 PowerBook) to Apple’s newest version of OS X, Leopard, and IMHO the big cat does not disappoint. Hundreds, if not thousands of other Apple/Mac – centric bloggers have all posted fine reviews of Leopard, including detailed synposes and opinions on all the various new features and improvements, so I am just going to focus on those things that I really like, that in my opinion make Leopard worth upgrading to.

First, and it may be a small thing to some people, but it’s huge to me, is the fact that the Print Dialog (in every application I’ve used so far) has a mini-preview built right in, so I no longer have to click on the extra “preview” step to see how many pages my file would print and figure out which pages I want – it’s all right there in the Print Dialog – nice!

Another minor improvement that saves me tons of time is the vastly improved preview function of the Finder. I don’t fully utilize it’s Cover Flow feature often, but I love that it can now show me an actual preview of highlighted files – even in the Open Dialog. Many times I’ve remembered what a file I want looks like, but can’t remember what I named it, so being able to browse through a list of files and find the one I want without having to open them all is something I really appreciate.

Then there’s Spaces – I absolutely love this new feature. Although I primarily use my Laptop when I’m traveling, I need to stay in constant touch with my team while working, which means my email and IM apps are open, as are my graphics and web development apps, and numerous browser windows. Before Leopard my desktop was cluttered and switching between windows was confusing, even using Expose, but now by using Spaces I can keep everything neatly organized and switch between the virtual desktops easily. Sweet!

I’ve saved my favorite new feature for last – the new and improved Preview, which now lets you combine PDF files easily, as well as re-order pages in a multi-page PDF. In my previous post How To Combine PDF Files, I spotlighted a terrific App from MonkeyBread Software called Combine PDFs 2.1 . This App is still a great choice for any Mac user still running Tiger or older Mac OS’s, but in Leopard you can now combine and rearrange PDFs directly in Preview. Super sweet!

To be honest I haven’t found anything yet that I don’t like about Leopard, and since there are enough things that I really like about it I’ve decided to take the plunge and upgrade my desktop, which is my primary working machine, this weekend. I’ll let you know how it goes…..

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posted in General Ramblings, Reviews | 8 Comments