Snow Leopard Details Continue to Surface

 

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Months ago, Steve Jobs announced that Apple’s next big operating system for the Mac was coming in the form of Snow Leopard (Mac OS X v10.6) in June of 2009. It would focus on improving performance, efficiency, and reducing its overall footprint within the operating system environment. While its predecessor, Leopard, focused on cosmetic upgrades and new builds, this upgrade would offer entirely new system architecture for improved performance.

Apple has reported that the following improvements will be made to help make Snow Leopard a critical upgrade that users will want to fork over their hard-earned dollars for:

  • Support for connecting to Microsoft Exchange 2007 servers for Mail, Address Book, and iCal.
  • Smaller hard drive and RAM footprint for the operating system.
  • Faster installation time of approximately 15 minutes. Comparatively, Leopard takes about an hour.
  • Support for up to a theoretical 16 terabytes of RAM by furthering 64-bit kernel technologies.
  • Grand Central: A parallel-programming technology that aims to take greater advantage of multi-core CPUs.
  • QuickTime X, featuring optimized support for modern codecs.
  • OpenCL, which allows developers to easily code applications to take advantage of the GPU.
  • A 64-bit kernel which provides a complete 64-bit environment for applications along with 32-bit support for older Macs.
  • Finder will be rewritten in Apple’s Cocoa API.

    Although more details of the upcoming operating system continue to be reported by tech websites, Apple has made no official news releases about Snow Leopard in weeks.  Developers recently received Mac OS X Snow Leopard Build 10A261, which reportedly showed few graphical improvements to the OS environment holistically. Stacks, a new interface type, makes its way into this build and allows a user to navigate through folders within a stacked view rather than opening Finder constantly.  The Trash window now has a “Put Back” feature for returning inadvertently deleted files. Read more news and information from Apple regarding Snow Leopard.

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