Surprise! OS 10.6 Snow Leopard will be released early, on Friday, August 28! Here at Small Dog Electronics we are very excited about Snow Leopard, even though Apple is not heavily promoting its launch with pre-press, etc.

Snow Leopard is designed to make day-to-day tasks on your Mac easier, faster and more accessible. It delivers a wide range of enhancements, next-generation technologies, out-of-the-box support for Microsoft Exchange Server, and new accessibility features. Snow Leopard is the most powerful and refined version of Mac OS X ever.

How to Purchase and Upgrade to OS 10.6 Snow Leopard

Snow Leopard is an upgrade for Leopard users and requires a Mac computer (duh) with an Intel processor, 1GB of memory (though at least 2GB is highly recommended), 5GB of available disk space, and a DVD drive for installation. Visit our RAM Finder if you want to add RAM to your Mac before upgrading to Snow Leopard.

If you’ve purchased a qualifying Mac or Xserve on or after June 8, 2009 that didn’t include Mac OS X Snow Leopard, you can upgrade to Snow Leopard for $9.95 exclusively from Apple via the Mac OS X Up-to-Date Program. Click here to get details of this offer and download the PDF.

If you have OS 10.5 Leopard installed on a Mac purchased before June 8, 2009, you can upgrade to the Snow Leopard Single User Edition, on sale for $29.99. Click here to see this.

If you have multiple Macs running OS 10.5 Leopard, you can upgrade to Snow Leopard with the Snow Leopard Family Pack. This can be installed on up to five Macs and is on sale for $49.99. Click here to see this.

If you have Mac OS 10.4 Tiger or earlier the only way to upgrade to Snow Leopard is with the Snow Leopard Mac Box Set. This includes OS 10.6 Snow Leopard, along with iWork ’09 and iLife ’09. Purchasing those separately would cost $289! See the Snow Leopard Mac Box Set on sale for $169.99 by clicking here.

The Snow Leopard Mac Box Set is also available as a Family Pack that can be installed on up to five computers for $229.99. Click here to see this.

Some of the most exciting new features and overall system enhancements in OS 10.6 Snow Leopard include:

  • 64-bit support, the next big step for the Mac. All key system applications are now 64-bit so they can take advantage of all the memory in your Mac.
  • Out-of-the-box support for Microsoft Exchange. Mac OS X Snow Leopard delivers built-in support for the latest version of Microsoft Exchange Server, something even Windows PCs don’t have.
  • Smaller footprint. Snow Leopard takes up less than half the disk space of the previous version, freeing about 7GB for you—enough for about 1,750 more songs or a few thousand more photos.
  • The Finder has been completely rewritten using Cocoa to take advantage of the new technologies in Snow Leopard, including 64-bit support and Grand Central Dispatch. It’s more responsive from top to bottom, with snappier performance throughout the Finder.
  • Quicker Time Machine backup. Snow Leopard makes Time Machine up to 80 percent faster and reduces the time it takes to complete your initial backup to Time Capsule.
  • Faster to wake up and shut down. Your Mac wakes from sleep up to twice as quickly when you have screen locking enabled. And shutting down is up to 80 percent faster.
  • QuickTime X: As the next generation of media players, it’s built on new core technologies and advances modern media and Internet standards.
  • More efficient file sharing.
  • Multi-Touch gestures in older Mac models. All Mac notebooks with Multi-Touch trackpads now support three- and four-finger gestures.
  • A new technology called Grand Central Dispatch takes full advantage of multicore systems by making all of Mac OS X multicore aware and optimizing it for allocating tasks across multiple cores and processors.
  • Universal Access: Every Mac comes with built-in technologies designed to help people with disabilities experience it. Innovations in Snow Leopard advance accessibility even further.

It’s a pleasant surprise that Snow Leopard is being released earlier than expected. We will feature in depth reviews of Snow Leopard in our newsletters as soon as it’s released.

Not sure if your Mac qualifies for Snow Leopard? Email sales@smalldog.com with any questions!

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