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Psystar releases the software they use to install MacOS on non-Apple hardware (crunchgear.com)
40 points by thaumaturgy on Oct 22, 2009 | hide | past | web | favorite | 38 comments



I give it 24 hours before someone discovers which uncredited open source project this code was borrowed from.


Which project(s) do you think it borrowed from?


I think it was the netkas pc_efi bootloader. They have been using it for a while it looks like: http://netkas.org/?p=62



Hackintoshing isn’t for the weak of heart!

so here are 38 steps to make it easy


As you can see though there are only 8 or 9 steps for the psystar thingy and the 30 others are for the mac os install.


As Geoff Boldglum might say: "There's no step 39!"


From the Psystar site:

"Rebel EFI is free to try and download, though it will have limited hardware functionality and a run-time of two hours."

Huh? Has anyone tried this yet, and do you know what that means? ...have they somehow crippled the OSX install, or do they mean that the installer needs to run within 2 hours?

Anyway, I'm going to take a shot...


Just a followup... I was sucked deep into a rabbit hole on the basis of this article, and I ended up experimenting with Chameleon:

http://chameleon.osx86.hu/

I don't have anything to report about the Rebel EFI (the "limited trial" aspect scared me off), but I can confirm that there has been TONS of progress with other EFI emulators, and that I am extremely impressed...


Apple could offer a 'lite' MacOSX inside a virtualized environment (like VMWare 'appliances') for Windows, to give more potential "switchers" a taste before their first Apple hardware purchase.

To be really sneaky, they could include it in one of their automatic software updates to people who already have Windows ITunes or Safari... or even require its use in order to run ITunes on Windows.


It would be hard for them to "sneak" a gigabyte of software onto someone's machine, nor would it be ethical or sensible.


It's 'lite'! Perhaps they can whittle it down to the same ~100MB that some of their iTunes+Safari+QuickTime updates approach.

And Apple has used their updater to push software people never consciously chose to install. See most recently:

http://blogs.zdnet.com/Bott/?p=1349


That would not work, because the Apple experience is a whole sum greater than it's parts. There is now way of having a "light" version of that on a Crapdell machin running under XP or so.

Also, your basic idea is already executes: iTunes for Windows.


They'd have to stop the practice of charging for every single minor point release update of their OS.


The way to think about OS X versions is that the "10" is a marketing prefix, or an 'epoch' number - "10.5.8" should be read as "Mac OS X version 5, point release 8".

It seems that Apple is trying to transition away from "version X (with cute codename Y)" to "Y (with implementation-detail version X)", much like Microsoft has been doing with Office, and Canonical has done with Ubuntu.


Except that X is version 10 of Apple's OS software. It's no coincidence that they chose X and not Z or Omega or some such.


They don't charge for minor point (that would be y part in 10.x.y) releases. More than that, upgrade from 10.0 "Cheetah" to 10.1 "Puma" was free, and upgrade from 10.5 "Leopard" to 10.6 "Snow Leopard" is only $29.


That's because 10.0 was a disaster of slowness and brokenness. Puma was supposed to rectify that. It needed to be free.


This logic suggest that Windows 95 is 88 times versions ahead of Windows 7, which is only three versions ahead of Windows 3, an OS released on 1990


No, this logic suggests that when Microsoft XP SP3 came out, it was a $0 update from SP2 which was a $0 update from SP1 which was a $0 update from the initial XP. The same cannot be said for any four sequential releases of OS X.


Go ahead, keep downvoting. Not one person has supplied a reason why cost is not a factor to consumers when making computing purchases. Not one.


I got downvoted, but I was serious. A major reason that Windows users don't switch to Macs is the cost. Everything in the Mac ecosystem costs more. The mice, the monitors, the software.

Case in point: Windows XP was released in 2001. Users didn't have to pay a dime to go through three fairly major updates to the software (SP1, SP2 and SP3) and many many many minor updates. Each one making the OS better, faster, more stable, more secure, etc.

That's 7 years of support for the initial purchase price, which was probably for most people either hidden in the cost of the machine as an OEM price,(AND the hardware was likely 20-40% lower than the cost of a similarly equipped Mac) or an upgrade from Windows 98, which probably ran around $50.

So 10 years of fairly major operating system updates cost < $150 depending.

rimantas said "and upgrade from 10.5 "Leopard" to 10.6 "Snow Leopard" is only $29."

But in Microsoft land, the update from 10.5 -> 10.6 would have been $0 considering how minor the differences are between the two versions.

This is really the great divide that Apple fans simply don't understand. If I have to pay $25 for a text editor (WriteRoom) on a Mac, or $0 for a choice of thousands of similar tools on a PC. I'll choose $0.

If I have to pay $70 for a mouse on a Mac, or $10 for a mouse on a PC, I'll choose $10.

The thread above is about ways to entice Windows users to Macs. The thrust was, "if Apple just stuck a VM out there with Snow Leopard on it for Windows users to bang on, they would loose their minds and run out and buy an entire office full of Apple stuff".

My response is, "no they won't". Modern Windows OSs are actually pretty nice places to be(even Vista to a point), the delta between OSX 10.6 and Windows 7 is not as great as say 10.1 and Windows XP used to be. Thus "getting hands on" will not be the same kind of enticement as it used to be. If Apple seriously wants to pull over more Windows users and grow their user base, they have to adjust their pricing model.

That's unlikely to happen though because: a) Seriously, Apple won't take over the computing world anytime soon even if their hardware was $0, there is too much momentum. b) Apple is wildly profitable with a smaller userbase. All they have to do is maintain the userbase and if they can grow it a few percent a year without adjusting pricing, fantastic. c) The Apple software/hardware ecosystem still doesn't have the depth and breadth of the equivalent Windows one. Lots of people have lots of things they need to do that they can't on a Mac. Many times there simply isn't "an app for that".

The current response is "well just install Parallels". Which is again, another fantastic demonstration of pricing insensitivity. So for the average Windows user to switch 100% to a Mac, they have to a) Buy new hardware with a 20-40% markup over similarly equipped PC hardware b) Buy new software, in many cases old freeware software many people get by with on the PCs simply isn't available at $0, and instead we end up with $25 text editors as replacements. c) Buy parallels at $xxx dollars d) Buy the Windows OS again

So to switch to a Mac and achieve equivalent levels of functionality I'm already well over the $499 for an average level PC + the cost of my Office 2007 variant to get up to speed.

And it's not really clear that the buy-in price really bought anything special or new to the end-user.

edit

Here's a perfect example http://www.techdealdigger.com/pr/cheap-dell-vostro-220-deskt... "Dell Vostro 220 Desktop Core 2 Duo E5300, 4GB DDR2, 320 GB HDD, DVD Burner, Windows 7 Premium bundled with a 1TB Western Digital My Book Essential Drive for just $394 plus shipping." Comes with a mouse and keyboard. Add in 21.5" monitor for $150 and $10 speakers and I could buy two of these for the price of the lowest, bargain basement iMac.

This kind of pricing doesn't even exist in the world of Apple. At this price point, the system is practically disposable in a year. Who cares if the build quality is such that it won't take a bullet? I have a spare in the closet!


1. Your "everything" statement is missing parts of the Mac ecosystem; for example that the dev tools for the Mac cost $0, or that Apple's equivalent to MS Office costs less while having features better suited to certain sets of users.

2. I had an opportunity to start using Mac a year ago, after being a huge skeptic. I've since concluded that I'll happily pay the premium, because the value of the boost in productivity is far higher.


1. dev tools $0, good point. Though I can find plenty of free dev tools in various language and tech stacks for a windows Box too (everything from c++ to python). I've actually never purchased dev software for a PC. But most developers do. So I can give half a point.

1b. MS Office equivalent has certain features for certain users: like...?

2. See, it's these kind of vague wishy washy non-quantifiable statements that don't make for an appealing switch statement. "Get it cause you'll be faster!"

"Faster at what?"

"FASTER at...stuff!"


I have no real interest in convincing you or anyone else for that matter to switch to a Mac.

I'm just making the observation that people from the outside (including myself before I started using Mac), seem to gravitate to certain arguments that seem "obvious", like the cost, or that Apple attempts to "control" what users can do; which now in hindsight seem pretty irrelevant to me.

I know from experience that its next to impossible to describe to people the details of the benefits.

I have a very long list of small things that just make me smile. I can't speak to how relevant those things might be to you. Also, you might not ascribe a huge amount of value to any individual point (neither might I), but they certainly add up for me. And for a fact I know that anyone could say "well you could achieve pretty much anything on that list by just adding software xx to your Windows machine or by knowing about some <nonobvious> feature" -- but part of the point is precisely that I can do these things without spending time on googling / looking for / figuring out / configuring.

In other words - yes I can get stuff done faster because I can focus more on "stuff" and less on fighting with my machine.

For example:

1. My Mac laptop is the first machine I've ever owned that goes to sleep and wakes up properly. I almost never turn it off. Saves me tons of time as I can get working immediately.

1b. Your question about iWork: From time to time I suddenly have the need to do word processing that's more like "page layout" but not enough to warrant buying a "proper" tool for this (eg oftentimes this happens in the context of a technical report or proposal). Ever tried doing "page layout" in Word / OpenOffice? In Pages I can flow text automatically between boxes, position images precisely, even pull the background out of an image and flow the text around the "inside" part of the image, without fiddling around with frames, anchors etc.

2. I was recently playing with a VoIP wireless phone that supports limited options for wireless security. Every time I would switch a parameter on the AP (eg from TKIP to AES, or WPA-PSK2 to WPA-PSK), I would need to reconfigure the network connection on my wife's Windows laptop, while my Mac reconnected automatically.

3. I recently had to ferry my son about town and ended up having precisely 45 minutes to get work done stuck in a place I'd never been before. I connected my iPhone to my Mac, turned "internet tethering" on, and instantly could get working. Even though this was the first time I had ever tried doing that, I could actually use the full 45 minutes for work. I still recall the times I had done that with my previous set-ups, and vividly recall the wasted time figuring out how to get everything talking.

4. If I suddenly need to grab a screenshot of part of the screen, I just press shift-cmd-4.

5. If I need a calculator, I just press f4

6. If I connect a second screen, projector or whatever, sensible things tend to happen.

7. PDF production is a snap.

8. Any "color selection" dialog allows me to pick up a color from anywhere on the screen.

9. Multitouch scrolling saves a ton of time.

10. I have a real unix terminal available that understands sensible commands like ssh / ifconfig / python, again without having to lift a finger to install anything.

11. Once or twice I've needed to ssh -X to a remote machine, and again, it just works without any further installs required.

12. We were taking my son skating and a lady kindly agreed to snap a little video; only she ended up holding the camera in portrait mode. Correcting that with the built-in software was a breeze (further noting that at the time I had used Windows Movie Maker far more extensively than iMovie on the Mac)

13. When I get home I plug in my external harddrive (and that is it). Backups are seamless, and I never had to do much thinking or configuring.

etc etc. I could go on and on but frankly I don't have the time. And I know from experience the type of response to this: "yes, but..." I used to be precisely the same way when arguing with my Mac-adherent colleagues. Today,given the choice between a $0 PC and a $3000 Mac Laptop, 9 times out of 10 I would opt to pay for the Mac.

(I should also note that I do a ton of embedded linux work, so I spend a lot of time inside linux; these days my preferred environment for this is inside VirtualBox on my Mac laptop).


I'll respond to each item as well...please bear in mind, the original post that started this thread was

"Apple could offer a 'lite' MacOSX inside a virtualized environment (like VMWare 'appliances') for Windows, to give more potential "switchers" a taste before their first Apple hardware purchase."

and my response was

"They'd have to stop the practice of charging for every single minor point release update of their OS."

Which is still finding downvotes from people who apparently have unlimited piles of money at their command. My longer reply to that was an explanation that to consumers, cost is a factor, and among competing equivalent alternatives, the cheaper buy usually wins. This is proven out by simple observation and yet that post is also in negative score territory.

If Apple isn't willing to listen to what consumers are saying, they will stay in sub-10% market share forever. I'm trying to reply thoughtfully, like you are, but still am getting hammered by fanboys.

I have a year old Mac Book pro sitting next to me that I haven't even bothered to turn on in six months simply because it doesn't do half of the stuff I need to do without either starting up Parallels or booting into XP. And then once I'm in Windows have a degraded experience because quite simply I'm using hardware designed for a different OS. It's not that the hardware is bad, or OS X is bad, it's that I can't do what I need to do in that environment.

1. So does my $300 netbook.

1b. Yes, agreed, Word is the wrong tool to do desktop publishy kind of things. That's why most versions of Office (at least the ones I've used) come with a tool called Publisher. That being said, Macs do do a better job for preparing print media. Working years ago in the print industry it was easy to see that Apple did a better job paying attention to all the little things related to font flow and layout and WYSIWYG to printer support etc. You'll get no argument out of me. However, I and most people I know aren't in the print industry and this isn't really much of a selling point. In addition, iWorks offers lousy support for the majority of the document formats I (and most people I know) have to deal with, that being Office documents. It's "there", but isn't really great for complex documents, necessitating buying Office 2008 anyways.

2. I've had equally frustrating network problems with my Mac when I was using it. Usually just had to boot into Windows to resolve it. It may have been just me and lack of familiarity with how OS X does it's networking stuff, but I gave it a solid six months, and still couldn't connect at various offices, coffee shops, book stores, libraries, without spending 20-30 minutes to get it to sync up. My $500 Windows Laptop has almost never failed to connect anywhere I've ever taken it. If I have to spend more than 5 minutes to get connected to some oddball network, it's very rare.

3. Funny, this seems to be about your iPhone not your Mac. I'm setup the same way on my PC.

4. Screenshots of stuff in Windows are a hair behind OS X. Prnt Scrn gets the whole screen, alt-Prnt Scrn gets the current window in focus. Doesn't do partial shots without extra software or cropping.

5. Same here, mine is ctrl + alt + c, but I could move it to f4 if something else wasn't using it.

6. me 2. Actually, one of the things that precipitated me to stop using my mac book pro was that it had trouble connecting to stuff. That and having to carry around an adapter cable so I could hook into the universe of VGA only projectors I seem to encounter everyday. What finally was the nail in the coffin was when this little "problem" cost me a deal and I lost quite a bit of money to it. I gave Apple six months of my time and couldn't get it sorted out.

7. Same here. I can make a PDF out of any app in seconds. Office 2007 has native PDF export also. Not interesting.

8. That's a nice feature. I do wish that Windows apps were more consistent about their color pickers.

9. It's "alright". I'm glad to see them mainlining back into the desktop. A few folks I know absolutely would not buy a Mac Desktop because they would loose multi-touch. But it's a double edged sword, Apple fought for decades to keep only one button on the mouse because users were "confused" with two. The tradeoff was that for years all the stuff that's available through right clicks had to be performed on a Mac with some combination of keys the users had to remember cmd+shift+k then l or some such nonsense. Multi-touch also is going to be tough for much of the population to become acclimated to due to having to remember various gestures and such (was flick three fingers or two?). I like Apple's physics in their multi-touch, but most of the multi-touch stuff I've found to be slower than equivalent mousing.

10 & 11. You've just advertised why I should "switch" to Ubuntu. With the $0 figure associated with that, Linux is even more tempting. In addition, just like with the mice, Apple fought for decades to keep the command line out of their systems. It was only when desperate for a working Kernel after the previous OS rewrite-debacle did an nix core make sense. The benefit? Easy ports of software written for free Linux. It worked out well though, Microsoft's out-of-the-box command line is geriatric. More importantly, the average user will never see the command line. It's nice that it's there, but if you can do useful things with ifconfig, you can install such software yourself also.

12. iMovie is a nice app. That was one of the only apps I really miss on my Mac. Comparing it to Movie Maker is insulting to iMovie.

13. I have a different backup system, conf wasn't really a big deal, and use my external hard drive for more storage. Different strokes for different folks.

14. Virtualbox on my PC runs Ubuntu perfectly fine as well.

Look, I understand that "lots of little things" have added up to you to make it a nice environment for you to surf the web, look at photos and write reports in. That's great. What my point is is that to the average consumer, "lots of little things" != "why I should pay a fairly large price premium to switch". At this point I'm getting downvoted hard by people that don't understand this and for providing reasonable and honest insight into why people don't switch.

I could go along with this and say "OMG Apple is AWEZ00m! M$ Sux0rz" and get some easy upvotes. But this is HN, I'm guessing most people on here have some minimal understand of basic business practices -- and that's what we are talking about. Consumers operate according to sometimes rational reasons. "Using a Mac will make you feel* better" is not a rational reason to spend 2x the money.

Nobody can say "if you buy a Mac you can do this thing that you can't do on PCs"

And more importantly (at least to my mind) nobody can even say "if you buy a Mac you can do all the same stuff you can do on a PC but at a better price point!". Because it isn't even remotely close to true. The PC ecosystem is so cheap these days that even absolutely free alternatives like Ubuntu look expensive in terms of time spent to switch. I agree, the Apple ecosystem is compelling, but Toyota didn't beat GM by building better and equivalent cars and charging a 200% price premium. And Hyundai isn't on the upswing because of the Apple model either.

My thrust is that most consumers, and I am using myself as a model here, don't see the price as making sense. Apple can't even make a rational case, their advertising copy is full of last year's features and appeals to "coolness" and "smartness". I don't care about being cool, and I really don't think that my doorstop Mac Book Pro was a smart purchase. I really wish I had that $2,300 + cost of Software back to keep me stocked with PCs for the next decade.


If you buy a Mac, you can run Logic Audio, which you can't on a PC.

(or Interface Builder, or iMovie, or...)


Again with the zero-gain "features"!

You almost can't swing a dead cat without hitting yet another multi-track audio studio on PCs. And a great many are very cheap or free, including some pretty good ones.


This is precisely the response I predicted I would get.

Logic Audio is not identical to Cubase or anything else out there, which is why there is a substantial base of musicians who swear by it and the increased productivity they feel they get from it.

It seems you're saying "it all just software" and so therefore you can just randomly swop out App 1 that offers feature X, with App 2 that offers feature X-bar. But the fact of the matter is, its still not the same, and the little details add up.

Eg perhaps you can export PDFs out of Office, but can you do it out of your browser, or your IDE, or <arbitrary application>, does it work precisely the same way every time, could you do it without thinking about it, and did you ever have to explicitly think about installing some extra software just to make it happen?

And sure you can run VirtualBox Ubuntu just as well on Windows, but how easy is it for you to roll back your virtual machine's rootfs to the version it was at 1pm, 3 days ago? And did you have to explicitly think about how to set up your backups that way, or is it a benefit that just magically happened?

I'm sorry but it just seems you're missing the point of what I'm trying to say. Its not about the individual parts, but about the sum of the whole. Frankly I don't care and I'm not interested in continuing this debate; as I said at the outset, I have no interest convincing anyone to switch to Mac, I'm simply stating the reality for me which is significant benefit in the Mac (and I never do anything for the print industry, by the way).


"Logic Audio is not identical to Cubase or anything else out there, which is why there is a substantial base of musicians who swear by it and the increased productivity they feel they get from it."

You mean like any other multi-track studio software, all of which are slightly different from one another and each has many thousands of dedicated users? Logic Audio is a pretty good piece of software, and it's benefited a bit since Apple bought Emagic but once again, it's not anything particularly special that I can't find for Windows or even Linux. If I used a Mac for multitrack recording, it would be near the top of my list. In other words, nothing to put myself out a few thousand dollars over.

And again with an unsubstantiated claim of productivity.

I had a car once, a 1982 Datsun. It was small, low to the ground, handled poorly and made a hell of a lot of noise, vibration and drama when you hit the gas. You felt like you were going like a bat out of hell. But it's 0-60 time was something like 14 seconds. I felt productive in it but in fact wasn't.

"It seems you're saying "it all just software" and so therefore you can just randomly swop out App 1 that offers feature X, with App 2 that offers feature X-bar. But the fact of the matter is, its still not the same, and the little details add up."

Correct. I agree, the little features add up. And yes, "its all just software", just 1's and 0's. Here pick from a list: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_multitrack_record...

Logic Studio is nothing particularly special and yet you proffer that forward as to why somebody should "switch".

"Eg perhaps you can export PDFs out of Office, but can you do it out of your browser, or your IDE, or <arbitrary application>, does it work precisely the same way every time,"

Two parts:

Part 1: yes. I can create a PDF out of every single piece of software I have installed on my computer that has a print function. I've been able to do that for a great many years. I'm not even sure precisely when I acquired that capability it was so long ago (1995-6 maybe?).

"could you do it without thinking about it, and did you ever have to explicitly think about installing some extra software just to make it happen?"

2nd Part. So you've never had to install software on your Mac before? Everything you've ever wanted to do was pre-installed when you bought it? Wow, that's amazing, my Mac Book Pro couldn't do almost anything out of the box, it must be defective.

Pointing at a singular minor feature (PDF creation) that just happens to come with your OS is not "switch-worthy". If I asked you "could you RDP connect to Windows boxes without thinking about it, and did you ever have to explicitly think about installing some extra software just to make it happen?" You would scoff at that just like I'm scoffing at your PDF example. How about connections to Exchange servers? Did you have to install some software to make that happen or did you sit down in front of your 1-button keyboard (labeled "go") and it just did all you could ever want for you? It's not a knock against the system that it can't do those two major features out of the box, it's just that both OSs can't do some things that the other can do. Again, roughly equivalent. But one has a higher dollar figure attached to those equivalent features.

"And sure you can run VirtualBox Ubuntu just as well on Windows, but how easy is it for you to roll back your virtual machine's rootfs to the version it was at 1pm, 3 days ago? And did you have to explicitly think about how to set up your backups that way, or is it a benefit that just magically happened?"

I can also run a few other VMs, most for free. Better support for emulators, device connectivity, hardware, etc. etc. etc. most for $0 (except the hardware, har har).

Backups are handled by my enterprise for work (never had to install a thing or think about it), and by an online storage system for home (I did have to think about that a bit, the same as a Mac user would if they were to use a similar system).

I assume referring to roll-back, you are talking about Apple's backup system "Time Machine" or whatever they are calling it now. It's pretty cool, I have to admit. I have 2 TB data I have to deal with that change daily. Do I have to go out and buy a 6 TB drive so I can revert back 3 times if I need to? At any rate, that kind of reversion would not be beneficial to me or my workflow.

I'm confused, you seem to be trying to make the case that you don't have to be able to think to use a Mac, but I thought Macs were targeted to "smart" people?


Apple has just come out with OS updates faster than Microsoft. Back in the day, you could have bought Windows 95, 98, Me, 2000, and XP in the same time that it took Microsoft to come out with Vista after XP. (You can even go back further if you ignore Vista like most did). And if you bought each of those at retail, it cost a lot more than $129 each time (even for upgrades).

Apple's OSs have usually been $129 at retail. How much does Windows 7 cost at retail? Sure, most people get it from the OEM when they buy a new computer and it costs far less than the retail price. But, so do most people that buy Macs.

* Macs can use the same mice/monitors as PCs (assuming you don't have an all-in-one like an iMac), so that argument is moot. Funny thing. I'm using this great new mouse with my Mac. I like it a lot, but it did cost $50. It's a Microsoft wireless mobile 5000. Works great.

* You can use any number of text editors on a Mac or PC. Some are free, some cost money. It's silly to pick a random Mac-only editor that costs money and compare it to "thousands" of PC ones that are free.

* In Microsoft land, I don't think that the Leopard -> Snow Leopard transition would ever have happened. Microsoft would never have made that upgrade. They might have pushed it to a service pack, but I doubt it. Microsoft probably would have held it back to wait for the next major update. There were major differences in the underlying system, but not much that was user visible. This is why it cost $29. It's not because it was only worth $29... it's because it's worth it to Apple to push people to upgrade. So, instead of getting the updates out as fast as possible, I think Microsoft would have waited. Also, $29 is more than worth it for those of us who wanted Exchange support built in.


I'll reply to each point (including the other replies).

But before I do: The question here is not, "are PCs better than Macs?" or "are Macs better than PCs". That's a stupid religious war to get into. The question is "how to convince a PC user to switch?"

1) Given that the two platforms are ~ equivalent w/r to features and capabilities, there is no compelling reason to switch one way or the other between the two platforms given features.

2) My contentions is that moving users PC->Mac is stymied by the large factual price delta to "go Mac" between the platforms. Given #1 above, overcoming the price delta between the two platforms requires something fairly compelling.

3) There is no quantifiable compelling reason to switch PC->Mac and several quantifiable compelling reasons not to, price being one of the major ones.

In response to your points.

The typical user upgrade path between Microsoft OSs has been 95->98->XP->Vista (and now I suppose XP->7 and Vista->7 depending). Me was DOA and 2000 was not generally used by consumers, rather it existed principally as a server OS. "Apple has just come out with OS updates faster than Microsoft. Back in the day, you could have bought Windows 95, 98, Me, 2000, and XP in the same time that it took Microsoft to come out with Vista after XP. (You can even go back further if you ignore Vista like most did). And if you bought each of those at retail, it cost a lot more than $129 each time (even for upgrades)."

In actuality MS has released a similar number of updates from Windows 95 -> Windows 7 as Apple has from System 7.5.1 to OSX 10.6.1. Ignoring the differences in versioning schemes used by the two companies. The actual OS path for Windows users has been 95->95SP1->98->98SE->XP->XPSP1->XPSP2->XPSP2b->XPSP2c->XPSP3->Vista->Vista SP1->Vista SP2->Vista Platform update Which, going by what Apple calls "major releases" is 14 major releases.

The only purchase cost was on major name changes (so 95->98->XP->Vista). These were typically upgrade costs or shipped with new systems and bundled in at OEM pricing. So for example, I got XP for ~$50 (OEM) and now 8 years later still have a modern, updated OS to play on at $0 additional dollars.

In a similar time period Apple has released 7.5, 7.6 (which was DOA), OS 8, OS 9 and OS X (10). It's confusing because there is quite a bit of overlap between some of the versions (X came out when 8.5 was still being serviced)... I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that the typical upgrade path was 7.5->7.6->8->X...which is fairly similar to the Windows world. Even figuring the need to purchase new hardware in the transition from 680x0 to PowerPC to Intel, it really wasn't that different than buying new Windows Boxes for new Windows. So that's a pass.

But let's look at contemporary OS's. XP v X. They came out ~ the same time. But I'm still using a fully updated XP OS at $0. Can you say that X10.6 had a $0 migration path from X10.0?

> Macs can use the same mice/monitors as PCs (assuming you don't have an all-in-one like an iMac), so that argument is moot. Funny thing. I'm using this great new mouse with my Mac. I like it a lot, but it did cost $50. It's a Microsoft wireless mobile 5000. Works great.

Good, another reason not to switch. And proves my price point, err...point. You can get reasonably good hardware for MS boxes, that work on Apple boxes, at better prices. This is what you ultimately ended up doing.

> You can use any number of text editors on a Mac or PC. Some are free, some cost money. It's silly to pick a random Mac-only editor that costs money and compare it to "thousands" of PC ones that are free.

It's by way of an example. Other examples of overpriced basic featured software abound in the Mac World. They are usually released with quite a bit of fanfare and Jonny Ive style breathless showcase videos filmed with too much zoom talking about how this piece of underpowered software will change your life if you spend $25-$50 on it.

Not a reason to switch.

> In Microsoft land, I don't think that the Leopard -> Snow Leopard transition would ever have happened. Microsoft would never have made that upgrade. They might have pushed it to a service pack, but I doubt it. Microsoft probably would have held it back to wait for the next major update. There were major differences in the underlying system, but not much that was user visible. This is why it cost $29. It's not because it was only worth $29... it's because it's worth it to Apple to push people to upgrade. So, instead of getting the updates out as fast as possible, I think Microsoft would have waited. Also, $29 is more than worth it for those of us who wanted Exchange support built in.

Which is exactly the point. In Microsoft land 10.5->10.6 would have just been a SP release.

Again, paying $29 for something I can get for free on the other platform is not a reason to switch.

Digging deeper, your argument is that I can spend 2x for a box to run an OS I have to pay to do minor version updates on, so I can just use all the same bargain hardware I'm using on my PC (and oh yeah, you'll have to repurchase all your software again, or buy a VM and Windows again at even more cost)?

Not the strongest line of why someone should switch I've heard yet.

This carries over even into Apple's advertising, which basically amounts to either "buy a Mac to be cool" or "buy a Mac so you can appear to be smart". Great. Not sold.


I don't know since when, but it's possible to use a pc mouse and keyboard on a mac. And yes, the right button works as expected.


Since along time ago.

Good, so I can recreate my PC computing experience at twice the price.

Not a reason to switch.


Protip: apple's $60 magic mouse != a regular $10 mouse. For that matter the mouse on my pc ( logitech g5, one of the few great mice available) is the same $60.


Protip: Don't use overpriced hardware that everybody complains about (clogs up, cramped hands) as an example of superiority.

Considering the very large number of complaints about clogged up $60 magic mice, I'm convinced that my $10 dell bargain bin mouse is better. Plus if it breaks, I can use one of the 5 others backup mice I bought for the same price.


Given that the Magic Mouse was released this week, I doubt people have had a chance to clog them up. Apple removed the part of the mouse that would get clogged up, replacing the functionality with nifty touchy gesture thingies.


Sorry I misspoke, the Mighty Mouse was the one that got clogged.




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