[OS X TeX] What kind of operation is TeXing? (concerning hardware)

Joseph C. Slater joseph.slater at wright.edu
Thu Feb 3 14:22:49 EST 2005

On Feb 3, 2005, at 11:40 AM, Steffen Wolfrum wrote:

> Hi,
> I am thinking about to buy a Mac Mini (1.42 MHz).
> Reading some reviews I noticed that a lack of this machine are 
> disk-intensive
> operations – for the hard drive seems to be relatively slow.
> As my very main target by buying a new Mac is to have TeX (ConTeXt, 
> XeTeX)
> executed fast (at a resonable price: no option for dual G5!), I would 
> like to
> ask you for an advice:
> What kind of operation is TeXing (i.e. running texexec --pdf in the 
> terminal)?
> What kind of components are important for this (fast processor, lots 
> of RAM,
> fast harddrive)?
> And is a Mac Mini (1.42 MHz) a good idea, or do you recommend an other 
> machine
> (at a comparable price)?

It depends on your needs. However, I'm writing a book using a G4 
laptop. I don't see speed being an impediment. The Mini is much faster. 
The numerous Mac tools (see mac-tex) make the Mac wonderful to work on, 
and the difference in speed/price between a Mac and a PC are relatively 
small (say you use the computer for two years, at $1/day, wait, that's 
the entire cost of a Mac Mini!). I have to agree that you want 1GB 
memory. RAM is cheap speed. Looking around on the web, if you're handy, 
and don't mind voiding a warrantee, you can install RAM on your own. 
I'm sure kits for cracking these babies open will be on the market 
within a month. All you really need is a think metal putty knife to 
open the case.


P.S. Dell should not be considered a banned word in this forum... when 
it's used as in "The farmer's in the dell," etc. ;)

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