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Mac OS 8

In 1997, Apple made a few changes with the operating system. First of all, they now actively promoted the fact that the Macintosh system software was to be known as Mac OS. Also, due to a partnership with Microsoft (and an infusion of capital from the same), Internet Explorer was installed as the default browser. Apple also increased their cross-platform connectivity with the introduction of an updated version of their PC Exchange product, which now had support for Windows 9x long filenames. Finally, the OS contained its own Java Virtual Machine for running Java applications.

Mac OS 9

With Mac OS 9, Apple brought the Mac OS up to speed with Microsoft’s multiuser offerings. It was now possible to specify different settings and environments for multiple users of the same Macintosh. Along with that, Apple introduced the Keychain, which stored the various online passwords for a user so that only one password was required when a user went online. Finally, they included a network browser so that a user could browse the network easily for a network server.

Mac OS X (OS 10)

Amid much hoopla, Apple introduced OS X, the current version and first major rewrite of the Mac OS in years, in 2001. The basic interface still looks the same; however, the use of color, graphics, and moving graphics is much improved over previous versions (as shown in Figure 5.12). Also, it is based on a Unix kernel, which makes it more stable, more scalable, and generally more powerful than previous versions. Windows “fly” open and get “squished” onto a bar (called the Dock) when minimized. Also, for the first time, you can save directly to PDF format in most applications. This new OS, in addition to being extremely powerful, is also extremely user- and Internet-friendly.

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