Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard: Paws-on

Mac OS X Snow Leopard was released today as an upgrade for anyone running OS X Leopard. We snagged a couple of copies and thought we'd offer up our first impressions

Nate Lanxon Special to CNET News
2 min read

Mac OS X Snow Leopard was born today as a £25 upgrade for anyone running OS X Leopard. We snatched a couple of the cubs from Apple HQ and thought we'd offer up our first impressions.

Installation took about 60 minutes. Just stick the Snow Leopard DVD in your Mac and double-click the installer icon that pops up. That's all there is to the upgrade process. Just wait around for an hour, and the upgraded machine will boot with all your files and programs in place exactly as they were.

Although actually, ours didn't. For some reason our Applications shortcut in the Finder sidebar and Dock stopped working. We had to delete them, then re-create them. But our programs hadn't been wiped, so don't worry if you get this problem too.

The new QuickTime X Player is beautiful. Trimming and editing video within the application is so simple it's almost funny. It still doesn't play audio from our DivX movies though, and doesn't support MKV files, so it won't replace VLC any time soon. And Dropbox -- oh, our beloved Dropbox -- suffers from integration issues within Finder. Apparently the product's dev team is working on a new version to support Snow Leopard. Panic over, people.

No wait, keep panicking: Exchange support isn't fun if your company isn't running Exchange Server 2007. Ours, for example, is running the 2003 version, and that meant Mail in Snow Leopard was as much use as an ugly horse in a beautiful donkey contest. Yeah, exactly: not much use at all!

Anyway, we're not going to insult your money by writing a review after using this for just a couple of hours. So instead, check back early next week for a full report you can trust, and don't miss our Snow Leopard FAQ in the meantime.