If you are completely new to Mac OS X, making the change from previous versions of the Mac OS to Mac OS X is a big jump?Mac OS X is a quantum leap over any other upgrade Apple has produced. If you are upgrading to Mac OS X version 10.2, aka Jaguar, from earlier versions of Mac OS X, the leap is just as "quantum" in some areas, such as networking, but is recommended in all areas.
As you can probably guess from the previous paragraphs, there are two paths to Mac OS X. One is for those users who are making the jump from Mac OS 9.x.x or earlier; the other is for those who are moving from a previous version of Mac OS X. Not coincidentally, there are two major sections in this chapter that describe how to make the transition to version 10.2. The section called "Moving to Version 10.2 from Mac OS 9.x.x or Earlier" will guide you through the process of moving from older Mac OS versions to OS X. The section called "Moving to Version 10.2 from Previous Versions of Mac OS X" will help you if you are already using a version of Mac OS X. Obviously, you should skip whichever section is not applicable to your situation.
After the installation is complete, you should review the section called "Maintaining Mac OS X" regardless of which installation path you followed.
Because of changes Apple made in its approach to Mac OS X right when I was finishing this book, some clarification is needed. First, if your Mac was made after January 2003, you won't be able to install or start up in Mac OS 9.2; you will be limited to some version of Mac OS X (which isn't really a limit because it is rare to need to start up under Mac OS 9 these days). In this case, you should ignore everything about starting up under Mac OS 9. Second, this appendix makes reference to installing Mac OS 9; this assumes you have a Mac OS 9 installation CD. At one point, this was included with Mac OS X, but it is no longer part of the OS X package. If you have a Mac that is capable of starting under Mac OS 9, you should have an installation CD that has some previous version of the OS (unless your Mac is really old, this will be some variant of OS 9). If the version of Mac OS 9 you have is older than version 9.2, you won't be able to choose it as your Classic environment, but you should still be able to start up in it.