I postponed the Lion upgrade for a long time. Snow Leopard worked just fine, after all. Then last night I plunged and upgraded, and man was it a bumpy ride. Being in the know, now, having seen the giraffe, the pragmatic thing you should do is not upgrade. If you’re reading this, however, chances are you suffer from the same thing that ails me, an irresistable urge for the latest. So since you’re going to upgrade no matter what’s smart, here’s what you need to know.
The upgrade itself
- Back up. If not all your files, then at least the ones you can’t afford to lose.
- Run Disk Utility. Repair permissions and verify disk.
- Buy Lion, download it, but before you click install, copy the “Install OSX Lion” file from your Applications folder — that way you can create a USB thumb stick at a later time.
- Run the upgrader.
What happened to me was the installer hits some undefined snag, reboots, then shows me no other info than “Mac OSX Utilities”, which includes restoring from a Time Machine, re-installing OSX and running Disk Utility. What happened? Where are my files? What am I supposed to do? Yeah, not very pleasant. I ended up clicking re-install OSX, and 2nd time was the charm.
WiFi not working?
What I found out, right after first boot, was that my WiFi wasn’t working. I managed to get it working again by perusing these tips. Specifically for me, deleting the SystemConfiguration folder, and deleting all stored WiFi acces points seemed to do the trick.
Your mileage will vary here. Some of you will like the new changes, some of you will want to try the new setup out for a while to see if you get used to it, some of you will want to turn it off right away. I’m among the latter. Here’s a list of stuff I did.
Restore the hidden Library folder
Install Lion Tweaks and unhide the Library folder. This app will also allow you to perma-enable the janky new scrollbars, which I expect to do, but haven’t done at this time.
Reverse (restore) the scroll direction
This is one of the more stupid decisions (more on that a different time), but scrolling has been reversed. You can change it back in System Preferences > Trackpad.
Restore the history back gestures for Chrome
Three finger swipe left and right is now swipe between spaces, and two finger swipe left and right is back / forward in Safari. The latter isn’t working in Chrome yet, so I went to System Preferences > Trackpad and set space-swiping to four fingers and back/forward to three finger swipes.
Hide the dashboard from Mission Control
I find the dashboard utterly useless. So it’s nice that I’m able to remove it from Mission Control in System Preferences > Mission Control.
[Update]: If you’re in the unique situation where you need to use a hosted PAC (Proxy Auto Configuration) file for your system proxy, you do not want to upgrade. If you do, you’re entering a world of pain. A world of pain.