StuffIt Deluxe 4.5
Review

On April 4, 1998, in Review, by Adam Karneboge

StuffIt Deluxe 4.5
Company: Aladdin Systems, Inc.
Estimated Price: $79.95
http://www.aladdinsys.com

Stuffit Picture

Aladdin Systems’ StuffIt Deluxe, and its siblings,
StuffIt Lite, StuffIt Expander, and Drop Stuff with
Expander Enhancer have become the industry
standard for Macintosh compression. And with every upgrade, you wonder what the Aladdin developers have up their sleeves that could possibly make the StuffIt Family better. This upgrade to StuffIt Deluxe is no exception. Aladdin has done it again–they have released a very worthwhile upgrade to StuffIt Deluxe that everyone should buy.

Support for 8
Probably the best feature of StuffIt Deluxe 4.5 is that it is compatible with Mac OS 8. Previously, the StuffIt Browser and Magic Menu were incompatible with Mac OS 8, but that’s been fixed and a few enhancements have also been made to StuffIt’s Finder Integration. Which leads me to…

True Finder Integration
It’s common knowledge that StuffIt 4.0′s True Finder Integration (TFI) allowed you to open archives, unstuff and stuff archives in the Finder, as well as stuff archives via rename (adding .sit or .sea to the suffix of a file would automatically stuff it). And you could do all this from the comfort of the “Magic Menu,” a menu that is added to your menu bar that contains all these functions. StuffIt 4.5′s TFI has been substantially enhanced. Along with Mac OS 8 compatibility, TFI now has contextual menu support, greatly improved mail support, and a better Mac OS 8 “look and feel.”

When you install StuffIt Deluxe 4.5, the “Magic Menu CM Plugin” is installed. When any file or folder is control-clicked in the Finder, the normal list of context-sensitive items is displayed, but another sub-menu appears, called Magic Menu. This menu allows you to easily perform any common StuffIt command without a trip to the menu bar. NOTE: Contextual Menus require Mac OS 8 and a PowerPC Processor.

With the new mail support, you can attach files or stuff and attach files directly from the Finder to a host of mail clients, including America Online 3.0, Claris Emailer, Eudora, and many more. You can also have StuffIt ask you what mail client you want to use, in case you use more than one of the mail clients StuffIt supports.

When you open a StuffIt archive in the Finder, you are presented with a Mac OS 8 “platinum” list view, making the StuffIt archive windows blend in perfectly. Unfortunately, progress windows and bars still lack the platinum appearance.

Expansion of Expander
StuffIt Expander can now easily expand many new types of encryption formats, including MIME/Base64 (Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions), .LHA files (found on many international FTP sites), and Aladdin’s Private File files (.pf). Expander 4.5 also allows you to mount any disk image created with Aladdin’s ShrinkWrap automatically.

Requirements/Availability
StuffIt Deluxe requires 4MB of RAM, System 6.0.5 or later, and System 7.1.1 for StuffIt Browser support. Mac OS 8.x and a PowerPC processor is required for contextual menu support.

You can purchase StuffIt Deluxe 4.5 direct from Aladdin, or from many mail order catalogs and online distribution sites. StuffIt Lite 3.6, the shareware sibling of StuffIt Deluxe is downloadable from Aladdin’s Web site, as are Drop Stuff with Expander Enhancer 4.5 (shareware) and StuffIt Expander 4.5 (freeware). You can also download any of the StuffIt family of products from our Best of Software section, http://www.mymac.com/best_of/software.

The Summary
StuffIt Deluxe is a wonderful product, no doubt about it. And version 4.5 only makes it better. Mac OS 8 compatibility, contextual menu support, and better mail integration make choosing to upgrade to StuffIt Deluxe 4.5 obvious.

True, we would all like better Mac OS 8 “platinum” appearance support, as well as multitasking, a feature that was added to the Finder in OS 8, but left out of StuffIt Deluxe’s TFI. However, these features do not affect the performance or functionality of StuffIt Deluxe 4.5. When it comes down to it, StuffIt Deluxe 4.5 is an indispensable utility that should be installed on every Macintosh.

MacMice Rating: 4
4


Adam Karneboge (webmaster@mymac.com)


Websites mentioned:
http://www.aladdinsys.com

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