Ancient MPU starting over again

I think this is both a hardware and software Q, so I am posting it under “Uncategorized.”

I met my first Mac in 1985, when our managing editor plopped a 512k down in the newsroom and told me (then-news editor) to “make graphics.” We learned - slowly, slowly (remember “the disk dance”? No hard drive!!), and I became a devoted Macophile for many years.
In 2002, after years of being single, I found myself married with two teen-agers with school projects. No one else in the family knew squat about Macs, and they were rather grumpy about it, so I reluctantly purchased a PC. This wasn’t all bad; all of my employers have always used Windows, so I just brought that home and continued to learn.
Bought an iPod Nano when they first came out. Then, quite a bit later, the first iPad. Not everything I imagined in a tablet, but a great step. The iPad minis - bought them for the whole family. Then, for me, a 12.9” iPad Pro to seve as my only laptop, about which I have learned enough to find some guerrilla way to do almost everything I need to.
We kept using Windows at home - only two machines in 20 years because I made sure we bought upgradeable machines and upgraded them - RAM, SSDs, whatever it took. The “newest” one finally died a week ago (MB fried), so big deep breath and we bought a (2017 model?) iMac 27” 3.5 MHz i5 (refurbished by Apple) which arrived today.
Last time I owned a Mac was OS 10. I am excited but anxious, too.
What is your one best piece of advice for me as we joyfully return to our Mac homeland?

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Have two external drives for back up; one for Time Machine, and one for a clone of your boot system, via Carbon Copy Cloner or SuperDuper.

Put the “upgradable” urge into the past; or rather, when you want to “upgrade,” upgrade your data storage and/or back up schemes.


I also drifted away from the Mac for a time (bought a PC in 1995 before I went off to college, came back part time with a MacBook Air in 2008 and full time with a Mac mini in 2011).

For your specific situation, my one piece of advice would be to look for apps that are cross platform between the Mac and the iPad Pro. There’s some great options out there that will allow you to do things the same way on both machines and sync your work back and forth.

My one thing would be to give the stock apps a fair chance, though since you’ve been on an iPad this tip may be redundant.

I think Numbers, Notes, Calendar, Reminders, Photos, Safari, Keynote are great apps. Music, Pages and Books are decent too.
If you need missing features then try something else for sure, just don’t assume you have to look for alternative apps.

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That last paragraph especially. Thanks.

If AppleCare is available on your machine, I think it would be a good investment for you.

It is. Great suggestion. Thanks.

Good point. Coping with the machine loss and transitioning to Mac now is a challenge, but not a disaster, because of backups and cloud storage. Upgrading was always primarily about my own impatience with computers (or networks) that don’t process as fast as I type (or hit save/submit, anyway). So far, this machine is so far advanced over our previous processor that I feel slow!