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Option-Click AirPort Menu for Network Details

If you hold down the Option key while clicking the AirPort menu in Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard, you'll see not just the names of nearby Wi-Fi networks, but additional details about the selected network. Details include the MAC address of the network, the channel used by the base station, the signal strength (a negative number; the closer to zero it is, the stronger the signal), and the transmit rate in megabits per second showing actual network throughput. If you hover the cursor over the name of a network to which you're not connected, a little yellow pop-up shows the signal strength and type of encryption.

 

 

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The PowerBook 500 series

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The PowerBook 500 series and two new PowerBook Duo models, all sporting 68LC040 processors, reached dealer shelves last week as predicted in TidBITS #222. The specifics are essentially as described in that article. Details of note include the fact that the row of function keys are only on the 500-series models, not the Duos; the Trackpad pointing device on the 500-series machines has a single button below, rather than one top and bottom; and the modems shipping with the modem-equipped 500-series models are manufactured by Global Village. These PowerPort/Mercury modems are also available separately; Apple's bundled version lacks Global Village's OCR (optical character recognition) software and has an Apple one-year, rather than Global Village five-year, warranty. [MHA]

 

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