Updated Mac OS X fans planning to besiege the stores this weekend to take advantage of Apple's free upgrade offer to version 10.1 are recommended to set off at a brisk pace, and save buying the papers and Woodbines for the return journey.
We're not sure how extensive the offer is, after enquiries on both sides of the pond. We heard that Circuit City and CompUSA weren't participating in the offer, but local Apple field staff say this emphatically ain't so.
Dozens of CDs are at both Circuit City and CompUSA stores, but given the demand we still recommend getting there early.
And we're still trying to pin down if older iMac owners who've held off so far are entitled to a free upgrade, but we suspect not. The UK matrix refers users to the Apple US site. Reports from Canadian and the UK say you should turn up with your 10.0 proof of purchase, just in case.
A few of you point out that the Developer CD, which shipped in the original box, isn't part of the free upgrade offer.
But a flood of important announcements look like they'll give Apple some justification to make OS X 10.x the default installation by January. That's what they seem to be gunning for.
As of this week, you can download Microsoft Word for OS X, and Palm has promised to bring a native OS X desktop to market by the end of the year.
And first impressions have been appearing, too.
The Chron's Henry Norr gives it a mixed review: "Most of the sluggishness that was so obvious in 10.0 has also been eliminated. … but I still saw a lot more than I wanted to of the spinning CD that Mac OS X puts up when it's delayed -- even on a top-of-the-line, 867-MHz Power Mac," he writes. He recommends holding back until the key apps are available.
(Henry, you're not alone in finding the semi-opaque windows a mess, and us Dock-haters are legion).
We'll have our own first impressions at the weekend.
The Accelerate Your Mac website has posted some performance comparisons here. Since these were carried out on a dual processor machine, some of these improvements may be specific to the SMP subsystem, and may not be accurately reflected on a uniprocessor box.
Finally, we've heard that the application launch time improvements are only really noticeable if you reformat your partition before installing 10.1 We'll be able to corroborate this ourselves, now we've got a copy of Ten-Ten-Point-One.®