First Look: Leopard preview: What's new in OS X 10.5

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The “Complete Package”

What it is: Last August, Apple slapped this all inclusive name on a trio of applications—Photo Booth, Front Row, and Boot Camp—that it planned on including with the finished version of OS X 10.5. Those applications aren’t available to all current Mac users—Front Row and Photo Booth only came bundled with newer hardware while Boot Camp is a beta that Intel-based Mac users had to download the software themselves. Starting with Leopard, however, they will be.

What’s changed: See below for details on the three parts of the package.—PHILIP MICHAELS

Boot Camp

What it is: Introduced in April 2006, Boot Camp lets Macs reboot and run Windows XP or Vista natively, complete with drivers. The Version 1.3 beta was recently released, updating drivers.

What’s Changed: Jobs covered the Boot Camp highlights in his keynote—namely, that Windows drivers will be included with Leopard’s installation discs, saving users the hassle of having to burn a CD of those drivers or install them separately.

But Apple may have inadvertently released another new Boot Camp feature on its Web site, before hastily taking it down. For a while, Apple’s Boot Camp Web site touted a new item in the Apple menu, “Restart in Windows,” which puts your Mac into a “safe sleep” mode rather than shutting it down entirely before rebooting into Windows, along with a corresponding “Restart in Mac OS X” menu item in Windows. The end result of such a capability: You still won’t be able to run Windows and Mac OS X simultaneously without Parallels Desktop or VMWare Fusion, but you’ll be able to switch back and forth between the two Windows more easily—and without having to sit through a full shutdown and restart. We’ll see if that now-removed promise of a new feature appears in the final version of Leopard, but it certainly sounds compelling.—JASON SNELL

Front Row

What it is: Introduced in October 2005, Front Row provides a remote-control-driven interface to media on your Mac, including music, videos, and photos.

What’s changed: Since Front Row’s release, it’s been superseded by the software on the Apple TV.

Front Row’s Apple TV-like interface

And it looks as if that same Apple TV software has been rolled back into Front Row. The images on Apple’s marketing page for Front Row make it appear that the Leopard version of Front Row will essentially be a Mac-based version of the same functionality found on the Apple TV.—JASON SNELL

 

Photo Booth

What it is: Introduced in October 2005 at the same time as Front Row, Photo Booth is a small application that uses an iSight camera to take quick photos, including ones tricked out with lots of fun special effects.

What’s changed: Leopard brings more effects to the built-in snapshot editor. Users can take photos and videos from their iPhoto and iMovie libraries as well as the stock photography that comes with Leopard and use those images as backdrops for Photo Booth pictures; the Leopard version of iChat includes a similar feature. Photo Booth files will automatically appear in iPhoto on Mac OS X 10.5; currently, those images are housed in the Photo Booth folder within your Pictures folder A new burst effect lets users take four successive shots, presented in a four-up, interactive layout that can be animated with a click. And once Leopard arrives, Photo Booth will also be able to capture video in addition to still shots.—PHILIP MICHAELS

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