Windows or Mac?

Discussion in 'Computer Science & Culture' started by Athelwulf, Dec 10, 2004.

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  1. Avatar smoking revolver Valued Senior Member

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    ah, if I don't see what is needed to be done by intuition, then I just go here and ask

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    or go here and read,
    or.. on rare occasions I have to find it out on myself
    I'm sorta a cyberpunk though, so that doesn't really bother me, is interesting.

    p.s. Mandrake of all OSes I have tried seems to me the most pleasurable Desktop OS experience. Of course for a server or gaming machine I choose something else.
     
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  3. Avatar smoking revolver Valued Senior Member

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    That's a brilliant idea/setup! Using one monitor! Great! I was thinking on this for a while (two seperate system), but always was turned off about having to buy an additional monitor (student, very little money).

    Alas, I think I'll remain to my WinXP/Mandrake dual boot, because I use windows so rarely (about once a month/two weeks and that's only because I want to game sometime) that it doesn't bother me much.
    Although... maybe I need more gaming...

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    We'll see how it turns out and if I chose your setup model, Gravity, when World of Warcraft comes out in this corner of the world and what will be its' Cedega support ( www.transgaming.com )
     
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  5. river-wind Valued Senior Member

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    Gravity - I've done that before, and It's most certainly the way to go if possible.
    I used to have 8 OS9 macs, two Linux systems, one BSD and one windows machine all on the a single dual monitor/single keyboard setup. it was the email/app servers for my college, but god, it was heaven.

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  7. Avatar smoking revolver Valued Senior Member

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    Is it too much to ask from a nowaday computer user to read a simple FAQ before begining to configure/maintain a new OS to him?
    I wouldn't advice that to a windows user too. Because of that (clueless, ignorant users) now we have all these legions of insecure zombie systems spewing out spam and attacking remote systems.
    All because of poor configuration, user knowledge base.
    I mean.. there are lots of these FAQ's, it's only a matter of some reading time.
     
  8. river-wind Valued Senior Member

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  9. Avatar smoking revolver Valued Senior Member

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    Exactly what I'm talking/thinking about. Ignorant and lazy users/admins.
    I think that my WinXP setup is almost as secure as Linux. It has firewall, antivirus, disabled doubtful XP system services and I doubt that my system even if winbooted could fail to a regular hacker scan&intrude attack.
    The same of course goes for my Mandrake and self configured firewall.
    Default setup is only for that when you first install it and then have time to configure it without being breached. But on windows I still do that with an unplugged network cable, because then I have more than the 2.5 minutes one guy had before his system was zombified with a cleanly installed WinXp
     
  10. river-wind Valued Senior Member

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    but why should you *have* to do that?
     
  11. Avatar smoking revolver Valued Senior Member

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    disclaimer: keep in mind that this will be a biassed and cyberpunked answer ->
    because I like
    but for a general user... ok.. maybe you should not 'have'
    although every system configuration is unique and any default configuration is bound to have some security flaw, because it can't be defaultly configured to be secure on all setups
     
  12. river-wind Valued Senior Member

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    great truth. ++

    no system is completely secure.
     
  13. Avatar smoking revolver Valued Senior Member

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    My favourite method when begining to build up a (network) security for a system is to completely shut it off network by a (hardware and/or software) firewall, rise the highest walls and then when I see that something that I want doesn't get through, I just open the doors for it, given that I know exacly what I'm doing and what can be the side effects, consider them. If this method is wrongly applied, then a simple user will open the doors for all spyware and malware there is. As you see -> again user knowledge is required.
    That is the greatest danger in all systems (and oh so even greater in windows) -> ignorant user with administrator rights.
    This is why I love most Linux systems which have from the start strict disjoinment of user and admin rights.
    Heck, even I don't run my OS daily as root even if I know most things I do.
    It's just a split of a second to authorize as root for a required task in a terminal or request window. But I get nervous if my system runs as root without me knowing what it is doing.
    That's why windows is so dangerous. It wasn't built with the idea of a complete disjoinment of user privileges, there are many hacks around this and fog walls.
     
  14. wesmorris Nerd Overlord - we(s):1 of N Valued Senior Member

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    Last edited: Dec 17, 2004
  15. Avatar smoking revolver Valued Senior Member

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    disclaimer: I'm just a computer user who loves to tinker with his hardware and software. I'm not an administrator of a large network, I have taken no special learning courses or any other professional education in the field and I don't earn my internet connection money doing computer jobs, so any advice from me should be taken with caution.
     
  16. Xerxes asdfghjkl Valued Senior Member

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    wesmorris,

    the windows gui is limited in how much it can be hacked. A linux desktop can be customized and skinned to hell, from the bottom up with things like gtk, metacity, etc.

    while mac osx with its transulency, shadowing and more makes XP look like a bad case of mascara, explaining why windows has outright stolen some of these ideas from apple for the upcoming longhorn. Ever actually tried it?

    (oh, and IMO, your desktop looks tacky)
     
  17. Tyler N. Registered Senior Member

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    Owning both, I say windows suck. I can never use the macintosh, because its my dads, but when I do, Its pure heaven compared to this hunk of plastic. Of course, a lot of it can be attributed to my dads upgrades, but even so, I can't imagine windows being that good. Although I must say, this is comparing old and not new models. Mabye windows has catched, considering that they copy all of macintosh's ideas, and there is nothing macintosh can do about it, due to a legal loophole. Even if windows is constantly almost caught up so it really doesn't matter, don't you feel good supporting the creators instead of the copiers, even if there is no difference? Plus, I read a 100 page comparison of windows xp vs. mac os x, and It clearly showed that macintosh is 1.5 times better, even though windows excelled in some areas. Plus, macintoshes look nicer.

    But for browsers, get opera, not safari or mozilla. Far better.
     
  18. Avatar smoking revolver Valued Senior Member

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    So you don't own both, get a limited time on Mac and one is an old version of an operating system. The rest what stays is your imagination ("I can't imagine windows being") and an unsaid win/mac comparison that could be done by a mac fanatic for all I know. (100pages of comparison clearly shows signs of fanaticism for itself).

    p.s. windows = gaming + a lot of graphics and video editing
    mac = no gaming worth speakiing of + graphics about the same quality (and less soft) as win.
     
  19. Repo Man Valued Senior Member

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    The concept of using a visual interface originated in the mid 1970s at the Xerox Palo Alto Research Center (PARC) where a graphical interface was developed for the Xerox Star computer system introduced in April 1981.
    The Xerox Star did not experience any commercial success, but its ideas were copied by Apple Computer, first in the innovative Lisa in 1983 and then in the Apple Macintosh introduced in January 1984. The Mac used the Motorola 68000 32-bit CPU running its own proprietary operating system. The primary new application that made the Mac popular was graphical desktop publishing.


    Yes, copying is reprehensible.

    http://members.fortunecity.com/pcmuseum/alto.html
     
  20. mercurio 9th dan seppuku sensei Registered Senior Member

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    Steve Jobs visited Xerox and describes quite literally how mindblowing the experience was, and how much he took with him: (scroll down a bit to 'Steve Jobs Tours Xerox', and the bit before is actually what you want...)

    http://www.smalltalk.org/people/alankay.html

    but, he paid for it. The right to take a peek, that is. Million bucks in stock options.
     
  21. Gravity Deus Ex Machina Registered Senior Member

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    Yeah, whether its a Bible they are thumping, a Koran, or a Mac - fanatics of all stripes suck. Each person should follow or not follow the superstition of their choice, and use or not use the tools or their choice.
     
  22. daGUY Registered Senior Member

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    As an experienced user of both Windows and Mac systems, I'd like to voice my opinion here since there seem to be a lot of people in this thread with misconceptions about both platforms.

    First of all, let's make sure we're talking about Windows XP and Mac OS X, the latest operating systems from each side. It's unfair to criticize Windows when your last experience with it was Windows 98; likewise, it's unfair to criticize the Mac when your last experience with it was with one running Mac OS 9.

    I've used Windows from version 3.1 all the way up XP. In terms of stability, Windows XP is greatly improved over its predecessors, being that it's built upon the NT/2000 kernal (generally considered much more stable than 9x - Windows 95, 98, and ME). Windows is practically infinitely customizable, between included tools (Registry Editor, etc.) and third-party software. It has the widest support for peripherals, and the majority of software out there is made for Windows. Plug & Play support is much, much better in Windows XP than in previous versions - I've had almost no problems getting a device to work properly. XP is also great for people new to the computer - "wizards" walk you through lots common tasks.

    The downside to Windows is that being the dominant operating system, it's the one most targeted for attack. Viruses, adware, and spyware run rampant on Windows - if you don't have a firewall set up, as well as anti-virus and anti-spyware software, you're probably asking for trouble. Windows XP SP2 addresses this (firewall is now on by default), but I haven't heard enough about it yet to form an opinion on how much it improves the situation.

    In general, I've found Windows to require periodic maintenance in order to continue running smoothly. In addition to the anti-virus & anti-spyware software, it also helps to do a disk defragment, disk cleanup, etc. every few months or so. If you neglect to do this, the computer will slow down over time, leading many people to believe it's just "old" and needs to be replaced. If you take care of a Windows system properly, you can make it last much longer.

    A lot of people ask what the advantages of using a Mac are, especially when they usually cost more than PCs.

    First of all, Mac OS X is a brand-new operating system from Apple that is based on UNIX (FreeBSD 5.0). The "classic" Mac OS (OS 9 and earlier) has been totally scrapped - none of the code from these earlier operating systems is in Mac OS X. So do not form opinions on the Mac's stability, etc. based on OS 9 or earlier, as they'll be entirely off-base.

    OS X is extremely, extremely stable in my experience. I have never needed to restart my Mac due to a crash in the two years that I have owned it (with one exception of a bug under OS X 10.2 - 10.3 is the current version, which fixed that bug, and has been installed on my system for over a year). Unlike Mac OS 9 and earlier, all applications use protected memory, so if one crashes, it does not affect anything else running.

    OS X's UNIX base means it's very easy to port apps over from Linux, and it has a terminal if you prefer to enter UNIX commands. At the same time, it has a beautifully designed, intuitive interface, and runs all the major popular apps found on Windows. So if you're into Linux, you'll be right at home on OS X; simultaneously, if you're a regular user who doesn't even know what UNIX is, OS X will work for you just as well.

    Its interface is very easy to learn and (this is important) consistent, which is often not the case on Windows. When you learn how to do a certain task in one app, 99% of the time you can perform that task the exact same way in other apps. You don't have to learn each app individually.

    There are ZERO known viruses for Mac OS X. Spyware is equally as nonexistent. Disk fragmentation is also not an issue. So there are almost no costs in maintaining a Mac system (at least for home users). The Mac that I'm typing this post on has been up for 9 days and 18 hours - I don't have to reboot to keep it running smoothly.

    It's really the little things about the Mac that justify the extra expense. Icons scale perfectly from any size between 16 x 16 and 128 x 128. Exposé lets you very easily manage large amounts of open windows. The screensaver fades in and out instead of just appearing and disappearing. When you start an audio or video chat, music playing in iTunes automatically pauses. When you plug something in - a camera, a two-button mouse with a scrollwheel (which OS X has native support for, by the way) - it works. Immediately. No setup, no installing drivers, no rebooting. The manual for my digital camera literally said, "software installation for Mac OS X users is not necessary" (the Windows instructions for setting up the camera were a few pages long).

    Little thoughtful touches here and there add up for a much more pleasant experience in the long run. You get the impression that the people who design OS X actually use it themselves. If you don't care about any of that stuff, Windows is a fine OS. But I personally feel that those little touches make OS X worth using, as it makes computing on the whole so much more friendly and easy.

    The best thing to do, really, is to go to an Apple store and try out Mac OS X yourself. I've been using it for two years now in place of Windows, and I can do everything I've ever done on any PC I've had.

    I think I've written enough

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  23. Gravity Deus Ex Machina Registered Senior Member

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    But -- if you want the security advantage (not being targeted for viruses, spyware, etc) -- don't brag about them! If enough people moved to it, they would start attacking it with gusto.
     
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