hi. i have a iMac G4 running on OSX.2.8. the programs i use most are Studio Pro 2,Final Cut 3, After Effects 5.5. I recently got new installation CD's for newer versions of these programs. i also got an installation CD for OSX.3.3. it's not an upgrader it's an installer. is there any preparatory steps i have to take my computer thru before installing the new OS? do i have to take my files off before installing?
You don't have to take your files off, but you should. Although it's possible to simply "upgrade" the OS and leave the files in place that's a good way to end up with weird problems that no one knows how to fix.
You should take all of your files off the compter (by external hard drive, CD or DVD or iPod...whatever you want) and then put the new OS CD in. Restart holding the "C" key and the CD will boot up. At that point, go into the pull down menus and find the Disc Utility. Use it to totally erase your hard drive. Once that's done, install the new OS.
You'll then have to run the auto updates and install all of your programs new. It's a little more work, but you'll probably be much happier in the long run. Be sure to take a break every now and then during the process program-installing process to use Disc Utility to repair permissions.