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A Change of Scenery



IMG00139 I’m always one to change things up a little, if only to keep myself learning and stretching.

I’ve dusted off my iMac, and for the next several months, I’ll be making it my primary computing platform. With Mac OS X running on the main iMac screen, I’ll have Windows 7, via VMWare Fusion, on my secondary monitor that is hooked up to the iMac. Having the extra screen real-estate sure will be nice. I’ll be using the Vista-based Lenovo X200 as a secondary computer for when I’m mobile or working at home.

This should prove to be an interesting experiment in keeping things in sync between three different OS’s on two different hardware platforms. I’ll be using Windows Live Mesh for Mac and Windows to keep the Lenovo and iMac in sync. Since my email is hosted on a Microsoft Exchange server, keeping my email and PIM data in sync won’t be a problem, either. Although I have Entourage installed on the iMac, I’ll primarily be using Outlook 2007 on the Windows side for email.

Any desktop + mobile users out there? What is your setup like?



  1. Alan Robertson

    11/11/2008 at 2:04 pm

    Will follow your experiment with interest, Rob. For a few months I tried running desktop + tablet but found it just got too tedious synchronising between them. I was using SyncToy from MS but because I use Outloook as my PIM it required syncing the whole PST each time. Even when I moved the majority of files to an archive PST it still registered the file as ‘changed’ just by being open in Outlook, even if no changes were made. I also had to switch off the indexed searching as it kept rebuilding the index from scratch every time I moved the PST between machines!

    End result – have moved to just using the tablet fulltime (HP TX2530EA), backing up data to the desktop weekly.

    I like the sound of your Exchange setup – I was very impressed with the demos of Exchange functionality with the iPhone/iPod Touch v2.0 OS launch and can see how this would make things much more manageable. Unfortunately I’d imagine Exchange is a bit expensive (?& complex) to run for your average (albeit techy) user.



    PS – on the upside synching between the two forced me to finally sort out all the old copies I had of my files from the last 3 PCs and put everything in a logical file structure under Documents!

  2. Jose

    11/11/2008 at 3:27 pm

    I use a Macbook as a desktop and a Fujitsu P1610 as my main mobile device. Both of them are connected via Foldershare and Dropbox. I try to have all the services on the web and I use Remember The Milk, Google Calendar and lately Pelotonics (I forgot to mention Evernote as well!)

    I don’t find any compatibility issue so far

  3. davidm

    11/11/2008 at 3:53 pm

    I have an x60 running XP as my main computer (can’t wait to replace it, battery life is down to 8 minutes, but my dream tablet hasn’t emerged). I work from a reclining chair for the most part. When I need a bigger screen, or to do heavier duty stuff I can’t do from a terminal or VNC, I use my Linux system, which has a 52″ 1920×1080 LCD hooked up to it. I also use the Linux system for media playing and shared computing. The majority of my communications are via web based apps (eg, gmail). I like to be as lightweight and non dependent on complex set ups as possible. I use Synchronicity to share my mouse and keyboard between systems.

  4. Erik

    11/11/2008 at 5:07 pm

    I’m a college student, and I have a main desktop I use in the dorm as my main computer. I have a 19″ and a 22″ monitor hooked up to it for some nice screen real state. The desktop is about 2 years old but still has a lot of power for all but basically Crysis. Its running Vista Ultimate x64. I have that system setup on the Live Mesh to sync up all my school documents to my mobile computer, Dell XT. The XT is the tablet I bring to all my lectures and take all my notes on. It has Vista Business 32Bit and uses the Live Mesh to send all my notes to the cloud and to my desktop. I have also put Windows 7 on a separate partition of the XT and have been using it over Vista the last week. All my notes and data are stored on a third partition to be used in either the Vista or WIndows 7 os.

    This setup allows all my notes to be used on all 3 OSes and synced together seamlessly.

  5. HG

    11/11/2008 at 7:30 pm

    Nice setup Rob, I also use my Macbook Pro for my desktop replacement running Vista Ultimate, on a 22″ monitor. I use my Kohjinsha SC3, Fujitsu U810, and lately have been using my Gigabyte M912 with Vista and Leopard. I keep everything in sync using FolderShare; might try Live Mesh later, but I have the office computers setup with FolderShare and everything is working perfect. Would like to try Windows 7 on the Kohjinsha SC3.

  6. Xavier

    11/12/2008 at 4:21 am

    No desktops for me, but I do have a multi-notebook setup. I happened to post about my new desk and the four notebooks (A workstation, MacBook Pro, netbook, and tablet).

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