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February 26, 2010

Comments

Peter Kropf

"All of this probably took me about three hours..."

That's exactly what drove me batty with Windows!

Sounds like this is a labor of love (and expertise).

"Different strokes for different folks."

JMHO

ocracokewaves

Considering I did two systems and added some new programs, three hours is not exactly a long time. I have maybe another thirty minutes to finish my wife's system.

I have done a lot of Mac systems in my life, and I expect getting two new Mac systems configured exactly like I wanted would have taken a very similar amount of time.

In truth I actually added some data from my MacBook since I have running out of hard drive space on it and my Windows laptop.

Maybe I would have been watching data going from one machine to another more if I was dealing with two Macs, but I did not come out of this feeling like I had seen the depths of geekdom like I did with some of the earlier PCs that I bought.

Everything worked out of the box. I installed one printer driver. Last time I did a major Mac migration, I had a couple of applications that had to be replaced. My old Dreamweaver would not work on my new Mac.

I have yet to have printing work without some intervention when I migrate from one Mac to another.

Out of the box, you will also go through a lot of updates on a Mac before you use it.

Trust me, this was a very good experience and a huge improvement over any other PC that I have taken out of a box.

Even if I had gone from my PC to a new Mac, it would have required that much or more time. Even if going from my old PC to a new PC required a net addition of three hours which it did not, I would not complain.

Anytime I can save over $1500 by spending three hours of my time, I will be signing up for that.

msFrts

>
Out of the box, you will also go through a lot of updates on a Mac before you use it.
>

That is just fud. Any mac purchased is ready to use out of the box.

msFrts

That is just great that msft has finally cleaned up its act and has delivered a usable product. But in the spirit of competition I will keep supporting Apple. Does anyone really doubt that without Apple providing the competition, MSFT would have us on DOS version 666 by now. If you doubt, look IE. Not until their marketshare was threatened did MSFT work to improve it.

ocracokewaves

I hate to disagree with you, but I don't think I have ever used a Mac out of the box when I didn't apply the operating system updates first.

Sure you can use it, but it would be just like using the Windows machine without updating it.

When I start using a computer, I want it to have the latest OS patches whether it is a Mac or a Windows machine.

Let's be honest about this, when Apple releases a new operating system, it is only a few weeks before we get a boatload of system updates.

If you buy a Mac towards the end of an Apple operating system life cycle, you will spend significant time updating it.

Both Windows machines and Macs are ready to use out of the box, but only fools don't bother to install the most recent updates before they use them.

ocracokewaves

As to Apple providing the competition for Vista. One day it will be written that Apple missed a golden opportunity to own the desktop during the last days of Windows XP and the whole life span of Vista.

Aside from some entertaining commercials, Apple did not go after Windows users. Apple also chose to keep their prices very high and still has not managed to reach double digit market share.

Do not delude yourself into thinking the pressure on Microsoft to improve Vista came from Apple. The hue and cry came from Microsoft's own customers.

I am willing to give Microsoft credit where credit is due. Windows 7 is a huge improvement over Vista and has substantially eliminated the usability gap between Windows and OS X.

I believe it will significantly limit the number of Windows users who come over to the Mac.

Apple is going to continue milking the Mac and its limited hardware choice just like they did the Apple II. While they are doing that they are establishing new products which are going have a whole new set of customers which this time around might not have the same needs as Apple's former core customers.

Sure Apple will keep turning out some neat hardware but will it be the hardware that you want at a price you are willing to pay?

Apple is the one with no competition. I have already given up any hope that Apple will ever deliver a small tower. Just how long will they continue using the tower design that came out with the original G5 seven years ago?

varun

Interesting - I'd almost forgotten that Jobs had indicated that the time delay in getting chips from IBM was a reason to switch away from PowerPC. Thanks for reminding me.

What I'm finding that increasingly Apple is providing the Intel mentality of "what's good enough" as opposed to "what's the cutting edge". For instance, Intel's concluded that for most tasks that a lot of people do on a computer, the Atom is good enough, and you have the massive sales of netbooks and nettops to support that claim. Similarly, I'm finding that Apple has started saying "we're not competing with Wintel any longer, because a Core 2 Duo is more than enough computing for anyone" - the "good enough" mentality. The timing of the rise of this mentality is interesting, coming as it did after switching over to Intel. You're seeing the rise of the good enough mentality elsewhere in Apple too - in software with Snow Leopard, with underclocked chips in the iPhone, with the lack of an upgrade for the Apple TV in what seems like - and is, says a quick check of Wikipedia - years.

Bonus: Wired's article on the Good Enough revolution: http://www.wired.com/gadgets/miscellaneous/magazine/17-09/ff_goodenough

Darwin

HP consumer laptops are plastic junk and their consumer support is awful. So good luck with that. Updated Mac Books will be out shortly. Unlike the clones Apple takes the time to do it right. The i7 based laptops you are talking about have only been out a matter of weeks but HP slapped them right into their existing plastic pieces of junk. Windows 7 is still a security sieve, still slows down over time, still does not make efficient use of large amounts of memory or multi-core procs. Sounds like lowest common denominator is good enough for you. But I prefer the best.

Darwin

Reading these comments I see the same lack of understanding and background knowledge resulting in the same uninformed comments as they justify their choice of lowest common denominator. Sad. The most common is that market share means something to Apple or to the quality or viability of a platform. It doesn't and Apple could care less any more than Mercedes wants to be Ford.
Amusing that the multitude of Microsoft patches are compared to handful of Mac updates as if they are the same thing.
Intel is very interested in seeing Apple use their products and they still get some Intel product before anyone else. Intel knows that Windows will never show off their hardware to its best advantage.
Snow Leopard good enough? Thats amusing as it walks all over any other consumer OS. iPhone procs are not underclocked. Apple TV and its software have undergone multiple revisions and millions have been sold. Lots of companies would like to have that sort of "failure". All of them would like to have Apples customer satisfaction numbers and their financials. No other computer company is even close. They better be glad Apple has never gone after market share because they would be toast.
Enjoy mediocrity. I hope its worth it's 'low cost".

Neil Anderson

You're off to a good start with your new machines. I'll be interested to hear if there's any foibles or gotchas in the future. Especially interested in hearing how your wife deals with the new system.

ocracokewaves

Darwin, you are the worst kind of Apple snob. You can see no wrong coming out of Apple or Mercedes for that matter.

First let clear up the market share thing. The only reason Apple does not go after market share is that they want to make the most money off each individual Mac user.

If you have missed that Apple is a money machine, you have missed the heart and soul of Apple. Why Apple charges more to go to an i-7 processor than HP does either has to be that they want to make more money or Intel charges them more money.

If Apple gets Intel products before other companies, then it is even a worse indictment of Apple's ability to get a laptop out the door with Intel's latest processors.

Might the reason that Apple has not released a new product be that Apple does not like to sell any of their products at less than premium prices even when the processor technology is outdated?

It is interesting that plastic is evil when HP uses it but okay when Apple uses it in their MacBook. People like you have never been in a position to have an overview of lots of Apple products in an installation. The original MacBook did not do so well in some schools.

Having worked at Apple I got to answer the phone calls when Apple would ship out a bad laptop to an important customer or perhaps a whole bunch of desktops that had serious issues.

I happen to have been using one of the previous HP pieces of junk for the last 2.5 years. It certainly did better than my Aluminum Powerbook which is stuck in the closet because of multiple problems. It also never had to go back to the factory like my MacBook did for discoloration and refusing to charge a battery.

The idea that Apple laptops are so much better than everything out there is interesting. They certainly look sharp, but I have yet to see any statistics demonstrating that they last any longer.

By the way HP also has a newly designed laptop called the Envy. It might be priced more to your taste.

http://tinyurl.com/hpenvylaptop

Let us be honest and admit that Apple does not have enough engineers to get out the iPad and a revision to their laptop line.

As to Snow Leopard walking all over other consumer operating systems, I guess time will tell on that one.

I think OS X unfortunately has a formidable competitor in Windows 7. I say that because I am not sure where Apple is headed in the operating system field or if the resources will be there to sustain OS X and the consumer devices. I know for a fact the OS resources get stretched at Apple. One of my field system engineers had to do the original work on making OS X work with Exchange because corporate did not have the people.

My experiences with Ubuntu have also been positive enough, that for certain consumers I would feel very comfortable recommending it.

What you really miss is that there is a whole subset of people who want the best technology which would seem to be i-5 and i-7 processors but are not willing to pay and arm and a leg for it.

When I looked at new cars a few years ago, I bought an Acura MDX. Merecedes had a similar SUV out at the time. It cost more than the Acura and had far worse ratings on reliability. I bought the Acura, I got much of the same technology for less money.

We will see how our HP pieces of junk do over time. If they last more than eighteen months, they will have done better than my Aluminum Powerbook.

By the way, Vista was actually the first Windows operating system that I though really improved over time. Now it never got close to OS X, but I think Windows 7 is a far different beast.

I remain impressed with Windows 7. I have been using it for five days on two machines and neither has had a blip.

slick

I really tried to like Win7 but found it very intrusive. Constant questions and confirmations (even after turning off the major offenders by finding a configuration buried in Control Panel) that stopped my workflow, the task bar the pops up windows incessantly, the downloading and configuration of drivers, the still completely confusing networking section... to name a few. You can say it "looks nice" but is this really "catching up" to OS X? Usability is key and perhaps I am a noobie in WIndows but I still find it harder to us.

ocracokewaves

When I worked for Webmail.us back in 2006, I was one of three Mac users in a company of 45 people. They were all bright, recent college graduates who came out of a college where Macs have a very large presence. I watched them get their work done efficiently and quickly. I am not sure Macs would have helped them be more productive, but I know the Macs would have cost more money.

It has taken me a while to get used to Windows, but I now consider myself very competent on OS X, Windows, and Linux.

Doing your work when you switch between operating systems is harder. I now rarely make the mistake of using the wrong keys in copy and paste, but I am five and one half years into my experiment of living on three operating systems.

There are still some quirks in all the operating systems. If you get used to one and do most of your work on it, there will likely be things that annoy you on the others.

I have only installed one driver on Windows 7. I did remove Norton because it kept annoying me by popping up, but other than that I have settled in well.

Having said that I do much of my work in a browser window whether on OS X or Windows 7. I am still using my G5 desktop for all my website work because I have found nothing as easy to use and inexpensive as Rapidweaver on the Mac.

I still am having a hard time adjusting to the ribbon in MS application on Windows, but I use them so rarely that I am sure that is most of the problem.

Wireless networking has worked flawlessly. I have not hooked up to a server yet since we do not have a dedicated one at the beach, but I am going to try networking with my wife's laptop when I have time. I will try hooking my new Windows 7 box to our OS X server when I get back to the mountains.

All in all I find Windows 7 a huge improvement over Vista and much closer to OS X in stability and overall usability. That's a personal opinion so your experience will vary just like they say when they give you mileage ratings.

My wife, the dedicated Mac user, might have a totally different experience than me. I got her email going last night on her new HP.

If I can get her contacts and bookmarks over this morning, we might have lift off soon though I might have to pry that ancient 12" Aluminum Powerbook out of her hands.

Dave

I've been a Mac user (at home) since 2004, and will continue to for the long term. My hands-on experience with Windows 7 is slight, but from what can see you are pretty dead on - it's the best version of Windows ever.

So why won't I switch over to it?

(1) Bootable backups.

I can't live without them, even with a 256 gig SSD.

(2) The short term need to reboot. The long term need to reinstall.

This may have changed some with Windows 7, but I'll wait a few more months and ask around before coming to my own decisions. I like to keep several apps (and several browser windows with several tabs each) open for days at a time. Windows still uses a registry, and I haven't heard that there's been that big of a change in how they manage memory.

(3) Personal preferences.

No amount of easy features (show desktop, proper maximizing) outweighs those damn annoying popups!

I'll be interested to hear how things are going with Windows 7 ad HP hardware in another 8-9 months. I hope to hear that things are still going good.

roz

Seems like WIndows has caught up a lot with Win7. I was worried about this last year as I saw Win7 betas but now it seems like it does not seem to matter that much. The focus has now shifted to new categories of devices: the iPhone and the iPad. Maybe Apple realized that they could fight a bloody, probably losing battle with MSFT over the PC, or it could move on the next generation of device.

iPad and the iPhone are the next great platforms to play in and as people adopt those they are more and more interested in all Apple products. Effectively the Mac is now part of the iPhone and iPad ecosystem as much as vice-versa.

In terms of the i7 and i5, I think Apple would have been faster here but there was a lot of commotion over the graphics chips and system integration chips and the CPU. WIth the Core2Duo, Apple used Nvidia for graphics and system integration but with the i7 and i5 this was blocked by Intel. It was the subject of lawsuits. I can understand why that slowed down Apple's transition to the next generation of cpu.

Welshdog

A single person's bad experience with a single computer does not a trend make. All computers break. All manufacturers sell you a lemon now and then. I am using a 7 year old 12" Powerbook right now. It has had zero problems. That doesn't mean Apple makes perfect products.

Find a better way of making your point.

ocracokewaves

Try paying attention to the post before you make a comment that makes no sense.

As I mentioned my wife also has a 12" Powerbook. Also since I worked for Apple for twenty years, I have better idea than the average person as to what breaks and how often.

The problem with one of the memory slots on the Aluminum PowerBook was so extensive that Apple did a warranty extension for some systems.

My Aluminum Powerbook had the problem but happened to not be part of the group granted the extension.

Anyone that was awake when the MacBook came out knows there were wide spread problems with discoloration and over heating.

In the seven years that you have used you one laptop, I have had experiences with a number of Mac and Windows laptops plus I worked with accounts with hundreds of Powerbooks.

So I am not just drawing experiences from one system. I also happened to be around at Apple when we had to replace hundreds and hundreds of Apple laptops before the Titanium Powerbook came out and reset Apple's reputation in laptops.

I stand by my comments.

Thomas Elam

Your experience with Windows 7 mirrors mine. I upgraded a 1 year old HP laptop and had a good experience. However, HP has not issued updated drivers for this particular machine, and the Ethernet port is non-functional. Not a major issue in a WiFi world, but bothersome.

Then there was an issue with Microsoft suddenly sending me messages out the blue that my copy of Windows was not "Genuine". I tried reentering the license code, to no avail. MS tech support sorted it out, but it was a bother.

Other than that it has been a solid system. No OS crashes since early November. All of the drivers, except Ethernet, worked right out of the box.

Net Applications share data for February was released today. It showed another gain for Windows 7 and losses for XP, Vista and Mac OS. I think that quite a few people are agreeing with you. Windows 7 is the best value for money on the market today.

Ultimately it comes down to what applications you really need to get the job done if the underlying OS is stable and usable. If Windows 7 does the job for half the price of a Mac then we will likely see a shift away from Mac OS.

Andy

Thanks for mentioning Office Live Workspace. Keep your eyes peeled for Office Web Apps. The entire Office suite is going to be online and free! For more head to http://www.facebook.com/officelive

Cheers,
Andy
MSFT Office Live Outreach

Richard

What laptop did you buy? I dont see an i7 hp around $800 from staples.

ocracokewaves

HP Pavilion dv6-2190us 15.6" Laptop

It is on the Staples.com website. After rebate, it is $899 and I get some back from my credit card and also some Staples bucks.

Jaydee

I agree with your windows 7 ideas...
I also think that win 7 will be my next favorite OS after windows xp.

resources management really stand out in windows 7.

thanks for your story :)

James

Your post was very informative and was a learning experience for me. I am much interested in Windows 7 operating system (http://www.mytechsupportstore.com/windows7-support.html ) and about its features. I will definitely keep coming back to read interesting updates about Windows 7.

johnny petters

Apple touts the fact that it has a solid advantage by controlling both the hardware and software. Although this is true, what they don't control is the content itself. The iTunes Store is their attempt to at least control the distribution of content. The iPad is their attempt at doing print media better than old tech. Now they want to take on television. As with music, their best bet is to deliver TV 'better' than the old media. Their best bet is to offer only what the user wants, in an easy way and totally portable.

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