Tiger Prep

As more and more signs point to a sooner than later release of OS X 10.4 – Tiger – I find myself planning for that future. Huh? It’s ok, follow along and I’ll explain a skosh more.

You see, I hammer on my OS X system pretty hard. I’m constantly installing new applications to try them out, uninstalling apps (when I get around to it) to free up some space, trying new programming stuff on my local system, and so on and so forth. Let’s just say, I’m sure I cause more problems to my system than the typical user.

In the past, (shortly after ‘switching’) I ran into problems after updating the OS atop my thoroughly hammered system. You see, small bugs or problems that have surfaced over time – whether by your hand or that of software – are only magnified when a new version of the OS is installed on top of them. Often it breaks more things than you can really live with. I found all this out the hard way, and ended up reinstalling things to make it all better.

So as I anticipate the Tiger, I’m already cataloging my system settings, apps, plugins, helper files (like contextual menus, bookmarks, app DBs, etc), system preferences, and running a massive backup of all my personal files. Once I know the official release date of Tiger, I’ll wipe my system clean by doing a full installation from scratch. I’ll run all the software updates until it’s a pristine 10.3.8 (or .9 by that point..?) Then I’ll install all my apps again, set my preferences, and be back to normal working status, only on a machine that I know to be as bullet-proof as possible, awaiting the Tiger injection.

Ok, so I’m probably a little anal about this stuff. I surely don’t recommend this for everyone. But if you tinker more than the common user, and know there are subtle niggles that have surfaced over time, you might think about this process. It’s not great fun, but it’s easier to plan for it than to be caught by surprise and have to do it out of necessity should something go wrong after you’ve updated to 10.4.

So are there any other Mac users out there planning the same type of things I’m doing? I know I didn’t share my particular process, as that wasn’t my focus when penning this article – but what processes will/do you follow? (If you’d like mine, I’m happy to share that too of course.) Or do you think I’m flippin mad for putting myself through all this? Sound off people. What else have we got to do until tomorrow when we may or may not hear about Tiger officially…?

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