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Prep for Mountain Lion with New Take Control Ebook

Joe Kissell earned his cred as an author who could explain the Mac OS X upgrade process back in 2003, when we launched the Take Control series with his “Take Control of Upgrading to Panther” ebook. In fact, that book spawned an entire genre of writing about how to manage the sometimes-stressful upgrade process. Since then, Joe has maintained his mastery thanks to countless hours spent considering upgrade strategies and testing installation scenarios, and he has helped many thousands of readers upgrade with confidence. The fruits of his labor are now available in his sixth such title, “Take Control of Upgrading to Mountain Lion,” along with a $5-off introductory discount offer.

We’re also announcing a discounted pre-order of Matt Neuburg’s “Take Control of Using Mountain Lion,” which is the sixth edition of his initial Panther-related title and which builds on nearly a decade of experience to help Mac users who want to learn Mountain Lion’s new features, be reminded of existing and updated features from pre-Mountain Lion versions of Mac OS X, or strike a functional balance between the two.

Of course, Mountain Lion isn’t out yet — Apple is poised to release it later in July — but Joe and Matt have been deeply immersed in the process of creating a pair of ebooks that will smooth your transition to Apple’s latest big cat. There’s no reason to wait for Mountain Lion to ship to start preparing for the upgrade, and “Take Control of Upgrading to Mountain Lion” is ready for you to read now, with a free 1.1 update that we’ll publish as soon as Mountain Lion ships and Apple lifts our non-disclosure agreement. For similar reasons, we can’t release “Take Control of Using Mountain Lion” until then, but you can pre-order it now and download it as soon as we can make it available.

Both books are available separately with $5-off introductory pricing ($10 instead of their $15 cover prices), but they work together to help you upgrade successfully and get started with Mountain Lion’s new features, so you can buy them together and save $10 ($20 instead of $30). Read on for details.

These offers will expire when Apple releases Mountain Lion into the wild.

Take Control of Upgrading to Mountain Lion — Join Joe for a pre-upgrade check on software and hardware compatibility. You’ll also benefit from Joe’s advice on making a suitable backup to simplify your upgrade or recover from an upgrade disaster, dealing with multiple Apple IDs, and deleting extraneous data from your disk so you can start using Mountain Lion with plenty of space. Joe also provides real-world guidance for handling these special concerns during what can be a stressful upgrade, especially if you’re upgrading from a pre-Lion version of Mac OS X:

  • Managing iCloud: During your Mountain Lion installation, you’ll be asked for an Apple ID, but should you enter one? And, if you have more than one, which one? You’ll find advice for sorting out your Apple ID before you enter the installer.

  • Upgrading from Tiger or Leopard: How will you download the installer from the Mac App Store on one of these Macs? What about Rosetta for PowerPC-based apps? Joe answers these questions and discusses the special challenges you’ll encounter when trying to upgrade efficiently from 10.4 Tiger or 10.5 Leopard.

  • Considering FileVault 2: If you secure your data and documents with disk encryption now, or would like to under Mountain Lion, get advice on what to do before you upgrade and learn about the much-improved FileVault 2.

  • Planning partitions: Read about what Joe thinks of partitioning and what you might want to do about it before installing.

  • Choosing an upgrade method: With Mountain Lion, the default is an in-place upgrade, but what if you want to perform a clean install to wipe out any lurking directory corruption and ensure that your disk is nicely defragmented as well? Joe talks you through the differences.

The 1.0 version of “Take Control of Upgrading to Mountain Lion” is 81 pages long. Once Mountain Lion ships, we plan to release a free 1.1 update that will more than double in length, thanks to the addition of full installation details, key post-upgrade tweaks, and troubleshooting tips in case your upgrade doesn’t go smoothly. It will also tell you how to migrate to a new Mac running Mountain Lion, install Mountain Lion Server, and use Recovery mode.

Take Control of Using Mountain Lion — In “Take Control of Using Mountain Lion,” Matt looks deeply at important features introduced in 10.7 Lion and at additional new options in 10.8 Mountain Lion, while also discussing long-standing but not-always-well-known capabilities of Mac OS X. Most importantly, you’ll get a thorough grounding in Mountain Lion’s new “modern document model” that gives you three ways to save documents: the old way, the new way, or the new way with iCloud.

Additional major topics help you to:

  • Take control of the new Notifications feature.

  • Understand the new Gatekeeper security feature, and circumvent it when appropriate.

  • Take a quick tour of the new Voice Dictation feature that lets you speak instead of type.

  • Understand Auto Save, so you can let Mac OS X save for you with confidence.

  • Learn how Resume works, and how to disable it when you want a clean start.

  • Figure out how to navigate with Mission Control.

  • Enter and leave full-screen mode, and switch among full-screen apps with Mission Control.

  • Set up and use Launchpad, and get ideas for additional ways to launch apps.

  • Memorize useful trackpad and Magic Mouse gestures for controlling your Mac.

This pre-order “ebook” is only one page long; it’s a placeholder that you can use to get the full “Take Control of Using Mountain Lion” once it’s available. We plan to publish it as soon as possible after Apple releases Mountain Lion and lifts our non-disclosure agreement; ideally, the same day Mountain Lion becomes available.

Easing Your Way — I initially thought Mountain Lion would make me feel cynical and grumpy about having to install and learn yet another version of Mac OS X. Even so, I found myself smiling as I downloaded the installer and started to get excited to see what wonders Apple had wrought, what would be fabulous and what would be awful, and just where we’re going next on this long strange journey. Lion introduced a number of issues for Mac users who were happy with how things were, but Mountain Lion has addressed some of them and generally improved the user experience in a number of areas. If you want to keep current with your use of the Mac, I think Mountain Lion is well worth its minimal price, and I hope these ebooks will ease your way — editing them has certainly eased mine.

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