Using SharePoint 2010 with a Mac

Mac users can use both Safari and Firefox to connect to SharePoint 2010 because of the introduction of XHTML in the product but there are a number of points that you should be aware of.

You can upload files to SharePoint from a Mac with no problems using Safari or Firefox but you cannot upload multiple files at the same time because that requires the STS Upld ActiveX control. (ActiveX controls of course are not supported on the Mac platform).

How to : Connect your Mac to a Windows Workgroup

Some notes to add a Mac to a Windows Workgroup and to share files:

1 - Enable Sharing on Mac OS
By default file and folder sharing on Mac computers use a protocol called AFP (Apple filing Protocol) but to share files and folders with Windows Machines you need to set the protocol to SMB (Server Message Block)

  • Choose Apple menu; System Preferences and click Sharing. 

  • Make sure File Sharing is selected, and then click Options. 

  • Select “Share files and folders using AFP” or “Share files and folders using SMB.” You can select more than one. 

  • If you are sharing files with Windows users, make sure to select the SMB option, select the On checkbox next to the name of each user that will share files from a Windows computer, and enter the password for that user’s account. 

  • To share files with some Windows computers, the Windows user’s password must be stored on this computer in a less secure manner. 

A look back at Apple and Steve Jobs

When apple introduced the iMac range way back in 1998 it was such a huge success it saved the company from going under. What happened at that time changed the industry by changing the conception of the consumer.
What Apple introduced was a simple and beautiful design both for the hardware and the underlying software. Apple introduced a whole new approach to product design that has been key to their success right through to todays range of iMacs. Instead of simply concentrating on functionality one of the main design drivers was how the consumer was to “feel” about the product. Its not rocket science, human beings by nature will always be drawn by something that they consider beautiful, be it a beautiful girl a sports car or a even a desktop wallpaper.
The original use of colorful transparent plastic, allowing users to look right inside the machine, set a trend in all sectors of home-appliances. Apple set a standard in hardware design: this time it was the outer look of their computers that was visionary and influential. When consumers entered a computer store the macs simply caught their eye, much like spotting a pretty girl in a crowd. At this point in IT history the computers day of just being a tool of work was fast ending. The corporate was the domain of grey and black plastic computers, spreadsheets and word documents but the home was the place to have fun, play games, watch movies, fix that photo collection and build that home website. The outer design of the macs was enough to arouse the curiosity, but as we all know cosmetics is not enough to sustain a love affair or even a product line. The Mac Software was enough to get the balance just right to push the computer into the home domain and forever take away the tag that computers where just for the corporate.

PowerPoint 2011 for Mac, Quick notes

Like all the Office 2010 applications, PowerPoint has received several enhancements. The new Presenter View lets you see both the current and next slide. There is a clock that shows the current time and another that keeps track of elapsed time; there's also an area for notes and a Dock-like pop-up of all the slides in your presentation for quick navigation.

Outlook 2011 for Mac, Quick notes

Importing from Entourage and Outlook for Windows into outlook 2011

  • You can import data files created in Entourage 2004, 2008, and Entourage EWS, as well as those created in Outlook 2003 for Windows or later. (Accounts, contacts, mail, events etc.). 
  • You can also import Windows PST files, templates, rules and other items contained in .nk2, .xml, .srs, and .oft files.

Importing from Apple mail and iCal Windows into Outlook 2011

  • Outlook 2011 syncs contacts from Apples address Book, however Outlook 2011 does not sync events or tasks from iCal.

Internet Explorer on the Mac

Why any Mac user would want to install Internet Explorer on their Mac is a scary thought, but there are cases when it is very handy to do so. One such scenario is for Mac web developers who want to test their sites using IE but do not want to install Windows in a VM.

Enter WineBottler, which will allow you to run Internet Explorer on your Mac. WineBottler is dependent on Wine and is included as part of the WineBottler download package.

You can download WineBottle at the developers site. The download is about 55MB in size. When you launch WineBottler it shows you a list of applications that you can install : IE6, IE7 and IE8 is in that list.

The developer states that WineBottler is still in beta so you may experience some problems. If you are looking for some Windows experience on your Mac or need to test some web sites with IE and do not want to install on a VM, it may be worth giving WineBottler a try.

VBA for Excel 2011 on a Mac: Quick notes

There are two major differences between Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) in Excel 2011 and the previous version. First, Microsoft ported the Windows Office VBA environment to the Mac. The engine was upgraded from VBA 6 to VBA 6.5. The company also enabled some functions, such as FormatCurrency, FormatNumber, and Replace that had been disabled previously. Second, whenever it was possible and made sense, Microsoft aligned the object models in Office 2011 with those used in Office 2010 for Windows. The company says that should result in much better compatibility across the two platforms.