Thoughtful, detailed coverage of the Mac, iPhone, and iPad, plus the best-selling Take Control ebooks.

 

 

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How Loud Are Your Mac's Fans?

When they get hot, Macs turn on various internal fans to keep components cool. The noise can be annoying, but just how loud is it? If you have an iOS device with a built-in microphone, you can download one of many free sound meter apps (search on decibel in the App Store) and see if you're subjecting your ears to a truly unreasonable noise level.

 

 

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Microsoft Releases RDC and XML Converter Betas

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Okay, it's still in beta, but Microsoft has brought the Remote Desktop Connection (RDC) Client for Mac 2.0 into the modern age. RDC enables a Macintosh to control remote Windows machines running Terminal Services or Remote Desktop Services (that includes the Business, Enterprise, and Ultimate versions of Windows Vista, Windows XP Professional, and Windows Server 2003). Microsoft has given this latest update a redesigned user interface, dynamic screen resizing, customizable preferences, support for multiple sessions, better compatibility with Windows Vista, and support for local printing. It's a universal binary, requires Mac OS X 10.4.9 or later, and is a 4 MB download. This version of the beta expires 31-Mar-08.

Also released was the 0.2b update to the Office Open XML File Format Converter that includes improvements for converting Word's .docx files and adds support for PowerPoint .pptx files. (See "Microsoft Office Open XML File Format Converter in Beta," 2007-05-21, for more details.) Remember, you need Office 2004 11.3.4 or later (the current version is 11.3.6), or Office X 10.1.9 or later to open converted documents. This version of the converter expires on 31-Dec-07; it's a 21.1 MB download.

 

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