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Switching from PC to Mac and I have some questions.

Discussion in 'Tech Talk' started by Tomkat, Oct 25, 2010.

  1. Tomkat

    Tomkat I Like Beer

    Jan 19, 2004
    Helena, MT
    Computer Gurus I need help, if I may. First, I’m finally so sick of the windows environment I am converting from PC to Mac. Second, I would like some input on some parts of the transition.

    As for most of my files, can I copy them from my PC’s drive to an external HD or Flash Drive and then install them on my MacBook? I know that I need to have the correct software to utilize the files. My main question is, are external drives formatted specifically for Mac OS and/or Windows OS?

    Is my iPod, since originally used on a PC, specific to a PC? Will I be able to use it on the MacBook? Is there something that needs to be done to the iPod Touch to make this happen?

    How do I transfer my iTunes library (libraries)? I don’t care about cover art and playlists. I just want to get the library on to the new computer.

    When I do this, can I consolidate libraries from different computers? Example, I have my older iTunes/iPod setup on one computer and my newer iTunes/iPod setup on a different computer. I would rather consolidate them all in to one library when I put them on my MacBook. Both libraries are 98% or more from CDs. I have very few purchases.

    Can the current external hard drive and the USB flash drives I have been using with my PCs be used with the MacBook and the eventual iMac?

    I hope my questions are intelligent and intelligible. If there is any other guidance you feel would be helpful, please feel free to elaborate. I have no difficulty admitting my own ignorance. Thanks in advance.

  2. Billy10mm


    Jun 27, 2008
    Hartsdale, NY
    1) The Mac OS reads Win32 formatted drives natively ... so there is no reason you can't just plop your Windows files on an existing external hard drive or memory stick and connect it to your mac. I made the switch about 6 months ago and I had 20K photos on an external hard drive. I ultimately moved the photos off onto my Mac, formatted the external drive with the Mac, then moved the files back on ... but there was technically no need to do it, I just like to be "clean".

    2) iPod's don't care which OS they're hooked up to. You are good to go there.

    3) iTunes is the weirdest, most backwards application ever created for the masses. Everything about the Mac and Mac software is fantastic except for iTunes. It is the most unintuitive, frustrating, and assinine application that has ever and will ever exist. I cannot help you with your third and fourth questions.

    4) Yes, they can be used natively. If you want, you can copy the files off, format the devices to optimize them for the new OS, and then copy the files back on .. but you don't have to.

    Let me know if you have any other questions.

  3. Pierre!

    Pierre! NRA Life Member

    Jun 20, 2003
    Lovin Sparks Nv!
    I definitely recommend the Apple site to you. They have great conversion tutorials there...

  4. Slug71


    Mar 7, 2010
    Oregon - U.S.A
    Apple = waste of money.
  5. podwich


    Sep 7, 2000
  6. wrenrj1


    May 22, 2002
    Just sync your Ipod with your pc, then plug it in to your Mac. Everything will transfer over. And work better IMHO. Also, remember you can only have so many devices at one time activated to house your Itunes. When you are done with your PC you need to deactivate Itunes, or just realize that the limit, i believe it's four devices and not exceed it down the road w/o deactivating other devices.

    I have a couple Maxtor external HD's that needed to be reformatted. While the instructions are included on the drive, I could not get it to work, for some reason there was a file/files missing somewhere that would not make it work. I just went and bought another HD for Mac that's formatted for Mac and works well with the Time capsule app.
  7. whitetiger7653

    whitetiger7653 NRA Life Member

    Apr 30, 2006
    Orlando, FL
    Yes to all of your questions.

    I have NEVER had a problem with my mac not reading an external or flash drive. Yes you can transfer all of your files over no problem. I may be wrong but I think if you take your old computer to the Apple store they may even do it for you. It may even be free. Call them first to check on this.

    Consolidating all your music to 1 library is no problem. Save all your music in one place on the new Mac. Import that 1 giant file into Itunes. Then in Itunes go to the option show all duplicates. Then delete any duplicates you have. While doing this make sure they are true duplicates and not the same song from different cd's or same song but a different artist/version of it.

    I think that answered everything.
  8. JK-linux


    Mar 5, 2009
    Drive by Trolling.
  9. Linux3


    Dec 31, 2008
    From my perspective;
    Microsoft = Waste of money.

    But I would never say that.

    I can see why people like MS; Lots of people have them and easy to get help.
    I can see why people like Apple; come on they look nice, they work well and the display is always gorgeous!
    I can see why people like Linux; they are control freaks who what to know what and why their computer is doing everything.
  10. glockfan5


    Jan 25, 2009
    Same argument can be made for Glocks.
  11. Tomkat

    Tomkat I Like Beer

    Jan 19, 2004
    Helena, MT
    Thanks for all of the helpful input guys. It appears as though I've got everything working. I like that I also have Windows 7 on my Macbook Pro. There are a few software programs that I didn't want to have to pay for again. I was able to load them on the Macbook. Now, based on the following quote, it seems as though it was all a waste of time and I need to sell my Macbook as I don't wish to be wasting my money.

  12. costanza187

    costanza187 I like Macs

    May 10, 2003
    I have both Windows and Mac computers.... although I am partial to using the Mac. The I have had absolutely NO problems using the same external HDs, and flashdrives between all of these computers.

    Now w/files individually (for example Word, Excel etc...) you WILL need a comparable program on your Mac to open them. Something as simple as iWork for the Mac will open MS Word files and save in the Word format etc... Also Open Office should work too. They also make MS Office for the Mac for that matter.

    iTunes will work fine, and if you do it just right (like burning DVDs not using a flashdrive or external HD) you might even be able to salvage your playlists and play counts. (I was actually able to do so using an older version of iTunes when I first got my MacBook).

    The iPod thing shouldn't be a problem... I think the rule is a Windows formatted iPod WILL work on a Mac, but a Mac formatted iPod will NOT work on Windows. I know for a fact the Win formatted iPods will work 'cause mine did. I eventually ended up formatting it to the Mac format just because I am OCD about things and wanted everything Mac.

    Win to Mac is a very smooth transition :)
  13. W4CNG


    Sep 19, 2002
    In the Gun Room
    I have Win XP and Vista which I am using now. I also have an iMAC and iMacbook Pro. I have Office Mac on both and they all talk together. When my XP or Vista machines die, they will get replaced with Apple Boxes. Everything is backed up on CD's. You can get Mac Office for $80 and load it onto 3 machines and do everything MS Office does at $400 plus. Same stuff just better and cheaper. You also do not get every other daily updates from Mac to fix issues that MS has.
  14. JK-linux


    Mar 5, 2009
    True, the iPod is formatted to FAT32 on Windows systems, whereas a Mac formatted iPod gets HFS+. Mac can read and write to FAT32 natively, but Windows cannot rand and write to HFS+ natively. The FAT32 file system size limit of 32GBs does not apply on iPods because it is not being formatted using Windows formatting utility. The Windows native formatting tool is governed to 32GB for various efficiency and stability reasons related to the architecture of the Windows operating system. Formatting an iPod uses tools and tweaks within iTunes which ignore these Windows imposed restraints.