New to Mac--how best to learn quickly

Posted on 2004-08-08
Last Modified: 2013-11-17
Never touched a Mac in my life-- never had the chance.  Now I have joined a company that uses them as servers and workstations, and although the company is fine with my admitted inexperience, I am expected to get up to speed pronto.  They would also like to see me get certified on Mac.  Is there a book or online tutorial that would bring me up to speed and head me in the right way toward certification? There is lots of info and advertising on the web, but I cannot discriminate between good or bad because I don't know enough yet.  Any pointers would be gratefully accepted.
Question by:queira
LVL 30

Assisted Solution

weed earned 100 total points
ID: 11749920
Mac certified? That's like being certified to walk, or do the cha-cha or something. It's not hard enough to be worthy of certification unless there's some specific area they want you to be certified in. The best way to learn is to just DO it. If you have a task, and cant figure out how to do it, 1) check the help files via the Help menu, 2) search google, 3) Search 4) search the Apple TIL via the Sherlock application. I REALLY think the certification idea is going to be a waste of your time and not worth the investment. Youll learn what you need to know by doing it.

Assisted Solution

leeprovoost earned 150 total points
ID: 11751864
if you have to work with mac os x in a server / production environment, it's almost unavoidable that you have to work with the terminal.

i don't know if you have experience with linux/unix?

i'd say: go get yourself familiar with the shell (in 10.3 it's the bash shell). every serious sys admin needs the terminal. ow and a good knowledge of vi or emacs is also necessary.

the good thing is that you find lots of documentation about bash en vi for linux and it's the same for mac.

Assisted Solution

njxbean earned 100 total points
ID: 11751949
I was in the exact same position as you about 1 year ago, and i learned just by doing it.  Actually, i learned the most from just reading forums like this one and and the apple forums.  When i had an issue i couldnt figure out i would post and someone would help me out.  But if you can troubleshoot, you should be ok for the most part most stuff is common sense.

Accepted Solution

mrblackhat earned 150 total points
ID: 11765603
The best way to learn how to use a mac is probably an answer you don't want to hear ;).  Just by using it, you can
grasp the OS very easily.  It is very intuitive for first-time users, so basic computing is very easy to do.  If you
are familiar with Linux on the PC, or any other flavor of UNIX, then you're also at home.  Mac OS X includes a Terminal
application (found in Applications...Utilities...Terminal) that you can operate the OS using unix commands.  A good website
to check out is  This website contains many hints for both beginners and power users.
Pick up a copy of a magazine like MacAddict and read through some of the tutorials.  That will help you grasp
how the Mac OS works.  You won't really need a book, because like I said, it's very intuitive.

The basics are easy.  You have your dock at the bottom.  This is a dock filled with icons, kind of like your start
menu on windows.  Try clicking on an icon to open an application.  Then File... Quit to quit it.  Click on the Macintosh
HD on your desktop.  Go into Applications.  Pick an application, and drag its icon to the dock.  It will stay there for
you to launch it as you launched the previous program you selected earlier.  Don't want it there, drag it out and watch it
'poof'.  This is what your new Start menu will be like.  You can have as many, or as few applications, etc you want there.  You
can drag any kind of frequently used file there, to launch it as you please.  Go to Macintosh HD... Applications... System Preferences
and play around with your prefs.  Add a user, delete the user, etc.  Just use it and familarize yourself.  It's easy as pie!

Author Comment

ID: 11766271
Thanks Everyone!  Now I have a starting point...

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