Friday, April 21, 2006

Why hasn't someone thought of this before?

Micromat have recently released a very nice little tool. The Techtool Protege. To quote the website blurb:

This tiny FireWire-based device contains 1 gigabyte of memory and comes complete with the latest version of Mac OS X, the latest version of TechTool Pro and our latest drive utility DiskStudio. And there’s still room left over for your other utilities as well.

That means the next time you need to work on a Macintosh, you can plug in TechTool Protege, boot very quickly and get right to work. No messing around with CDs, portable drives, installers and the myriad of other items you'd usually keep in your toolbox.

A Mac technician is quoted as saying...

“This is nice, as I can plug it directly into the FireWire port of a machine and the computer booted from this drive, faster than a CD. I am able to run diagnostics and check stats on the computer. Small enough to fit in a pocket, makes it handy to carry around. This makes my job as a technician so much easier. No more looking for a power plug, and no need to find a FireWire cable.”

Now, this got me thinking... how come every computer doesn't come with this built in? How difficult would it be for manufacturers to put a basic startup system, along with analysis tools on flash memory, so that if a problem is detected during startup, the machine switches to this system, runs a set of repair routines, and then either restarts from the repaired drive, or alerts the user that more work is needed?


Teifion said...

That's an excellent idea

Jan said...

Thanks Bret. My ibook crashed hard last Friday...logic board, I think. I gave up and took it to Cardiff, who is sending it on to Apple.

I'd been wishing for Techtool to isolate the problem and this little gem looks great.

Considering how little hardcopy Mr. Jobs gives with a new mac, I doubt we'll see your good suggestion in an Apple crate.

By the way, I'm posting this on a new 17" iMac dual core. I'll keep the G3 ibook when it comes home, but needed the upgade. So far, so good. I do recommend at least 1g of ram. I'm still using the 512 it came with, but will add more soon.

For those who wonder, I had no problems loading Office:Mac 2004. (Some have reported problems).

Skep said...

Dell PCs come with this as standard, actually... well, when you don't screw with the HDD yourself, and get rid of it because it's taking "precious gigabytes!"

Also, this kind of thing leads to serious issues; automatic checking for ANY illegal software, O/S included. Illegal music, 'bad' software (software that can do things like change the partition format, or resize them)... as lovely as it sounds, it's a really bad idea.

Lets stick to the open-source/non-coporate-machine-based digitoolkits.