How is mac osx the powerful OS that everyone says it is?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by sevag1, Jun 11, 2002.

  1. sevag1 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2001
    #1
    i mean, what makes it so powerful? I dont really see it.. It could be just me.. though i love osx, and its very beautiful, and i prefer it over 9.. but i just cant grasp why its powerful... maybe its a technical thing.. can someone please explain to me the power of osx? :D
     
  2. Rower_CPU Moderator emeritus

    Rower_CPU

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2001
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    #2
    Where do I start?

    Primarily, it has awesome stability thanks to its Unix roots. This also makes it very network friendly, providing you with MANY ways of connecting to servers/other computers.

    Secondly, the entire OS can take advantage of multiple processors, so those with dual PowerMacs will really see a performance boost.

    Thirdly, the OS used a PDF based 2D display system called Quartz which allows them to add all the transparency effects, and allows you to create PDF files natively within the OS.

    There's more, but I'll leave some for others who wish to chime in.:)
     
  3. kishba macrumors 6502a

    kishba

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  4. britboy macrumors 68030

    britboy

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    #4

    That's my cue....

    To make it easier on yourself, why not have a look at what apple themselves have to say? what you can do

    What's so great about OS X? It's beautiful, stable, allows you easy access to complete control os the system (via the terminal), it's has brilliant multi-tasking management, one program can crash, and it doesn't affect anything else.... the list could go on and on. OS 9 was great, but this is a whole new era we've entered with X.
     
  5. sevag1 thread starter macrumors member

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    Jul 16, 2001
    #5
    aright, thanks.. the only thing that keeps me coming back to OS 9 though is quake 2, and general gaming.. IMO gaming on osx sucks big time..
     
  6. Catfish_Man macrumors 68030

    Catfish_Man

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    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #6
    OpenGL...

    ...has some issues on 10.1.5 and earlier, it will be improved in 10.2. One thing everybody left out is a real virtual memory system. The ability to turn off virtual memory in OS9 was only because it sucked so much. Even Windows95 manages memory better than OS9 (it automatically allocates enough memory for each app, for example). Some other strong points:
    Networking: way ahead of OS9 (Samba, Apache, SSH, etc...)
    Multitasking: Even further ahead (preemptive vs. cooperative)
    Multiprocessor support: Actually has it
    Quartz: Most advanced 2d today (Windows should catch up in 2003/2004 with longhorn)
    PowerPC native: OS9 still does a little 68k stuff
    Protected memory: Crashing apps can't crash the machine
    CLI: OS9 doesn't have a command line, OSX does
    Applications: *nix apps can be easily ported
    Java: OS9 has Java 1.1.8, OSX has Java2 1.3.1
    Hackability: Almost the only way of modifying OS9 was extensions
    Multi User: OSX is a true multi-user system, OS9 just fakes it
    Development Tools/APIs: Cocoa kicks ***
    Altivec support: G4s give a bigger boost to OSX than to OS9
    Open source core: faster updates with less work/money from Apple
    Web serving: built in Apache
     
  7. big macrumors 65816

    big

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    Feb 20, 2002
    #7
    I love Apple's top 10 list
     
  8. topicolo macrumors 68000

    topicolo

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    Jun 4, 2002
    Location:
    Ottawa, ON
    #8
    I wonder when OS X will feel just as fast as OS 9 in everything? I mean, Jaguar sounds like it'll speed things up a lot, but is it going to match and exceed 9 in everything?
     
  9. big macrumors 65816

    big

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2002
    #9
    remember OS 8? and then the debacle of 8.5? OSX is screaming vs that system. Its just too chunky, can't squeeze all the little windows and list icons in like you could w/9
     
  10. Nipsy macrumors 65816

    Nipsy

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    Jan 19, 2002
    #10
    Power and gaming prowess aren't usually parallel. I think Sun UltraSparc IIIs are immensely powerful machines, but I don't think you can run any common graphical games on them.

    OSX is similar, in that its overall abilities are broad, and outside of the finder itself, it is screamin' fast, but it needs som improvement in gaming. My machine runs Apache all the time, as well as a number of other daemons to provide services (databases, JVM, etc), and it is transparent to my end user experience. Basically, my one G4 has replaced my UNIX server, my 9600, and the 7500 I had as a gateway between the two. It does this while running Mozilla, BBEdit, Excel, Mail, Apache, MySQL, 5-10 terminal sessions, Timbuktu, VPC, loadsa daily cron jobs, etc. It does this without missing a beat. Aside from being able to run Excel on a UNIX box, you can also run a host of popular games on your UNIX box.

    While their performance isn't stellar, remember that these are most often games which were:
    Written for x86
    Ported to Mac
    Updated to Carbon
    Patched for OSX functionality

    Hopefully, we'll see a future where games are written under UNIX (where much of their compositing occurs), and ported to run natively on the target platform (PC, Mac, PS2, etc). This will mean that games are optimized to their host hardware, and utilize the most efficient system hooks.

    Jaguar and QuartzExtreme should help you 'feel' some of the power that OSX has given you (especially in games that take advantage, and the finder), but there is already alot going on under the hood. The reason that this is the most powerful OS ever, is that it REALLY is a full UNIX installation, with a Macintosh Window manager.

    For geeks & developers this is OS nirvana. As I mentioned before, I can now do (well) with one box what used to require 3. I can also do it with Mac ease of use when I'm in a hurry, or UNIX configurability when I'm trying to get it just right. I can run anything I compile as a native Darwin app. Anything carbon as a semi native OSX app. Anything Cocoa as a native OSX app. Anything Java as a native OSX app. Anything Classic in an emulation mode. Anything written for Windows in an emulation mode. Having this sort of breadth of OSes on one machine makes cross platform development the easiest it has ever been.

    And that's just the tip of the iceberg...what I (a developer) am happy about now, you (an end user) will benefit from (greatly) over the next years.
     
  11. blakespot Administrator

    blakespot

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    Location:
    Alexandria, VA
    #11
    Quake 2 is faster on OS X than it is for OS 9. I have OS X versions of Quake, Quake 2 and Quake 3. All of them are extremely fast. They also benefit from my dual processors, as all OS X apps do--even ones written poorly.

    OS X has the makings of one of the best game platforms around. Take a look at what OmniGroup said about their port of Giants: Citizen Kabuto from the PC to Mac OS X (adding dual processor support along the way):

    "This is the only version of Giants that can use multiple processors. We actually added multi-processing support while we were doing the port, as well as doing various optimizations on the graphics routines (and changing the graphics library from Direct3D to OpenGL). The end result is we're getting the same framerates on our Macintosh dual 500 MHz G4s with a GeForce 2 on an AGP 2x bus as we do on a brand-new, top of the line Wintel AMD 1.3 GHz Ahtlon with a GeForce 3 on an AGP 4x bus and DDR RAM. "

    And OmniGroup, unlike Mark/Glenda Adams at Westlake (the largest Mac game porting group that I'm aware of) use Cocoa, the native OS X development environment to do their ports (vs. less robust Carbon which is used by most OS X game houses). See OmniGroup's Giants page for more info.

    Under OS 9, my hardware is not fully utilized. It's with OS X that I see incredible gaming power. I have full faith in the quality and potential of future games on this platform--far more than I did for antiquated OS 9 (which has a kernel less robust than that of the original Windows 95.)



    blakespot
     
  12. buffsldr macrumors 6502a

    buffsldr

    Joined:
    May 7, 2001
    #12
    Re: How is mac osx the powerful OS that everyone says it is?

    apps are memory protected from one another. if one crashes, the rest of the apps are ok.
     
  13. agreenster macrumors 68000

    agreenster

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    Dec 6, 2001
    Location:
    Walt Disney Animation Studios
    #13
    When I read the title of this post, I almost dropped my teeth. Im glad you guys set the record straight with your above posts, because what you all have said is very true.

    I started using OSX when 10.1 came out, and I havent been dissappointed yet. I love it. of course, I was aprehensive at first, thinking you couldnt improve OS9. Man, was I wrong. OSX is one of the biggest accomplishments in personal computing EVER. it is beautiful, rock solid, and when jaguar debuts, will be super fast. (banking on Quartz-Xtreme here) Im using a 550TiBook, and see very few performance problems. If QXtreme is as good as everyone says it is, OSX will be 100% prime-time.

    PS--just got Photoshop 7, and my transition to X is fully complete. Let the journey begin
     
  14. big macrumors 65816

    big

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    Feb 20, 2002
    #14
    now if only my cad software would do the same....
     
  15. buffsldr macrumors 6502a

    buffsldr

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    May 7, 2001
    #15
    what are you talking about?
     
  16. Foocha macrumors 6502a

    Foocha

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    Jul 10, 2001
    Location:
    London
    #16
    I've always been a fan of OS X, but it's only in the last couple of weeks that it hit me quite how cool OS X is.

    With the release of Photoshop, all my apps are now Carbon or Cocoa - native OS X apps. It's funny how with a computer you hardly notice when things are working well, but when things are going badly - crashes, out of memory errors, not having enough memory to open all the apps you need - you really know you have problems.

    Well last week when I had to help a colleague still working in OS 9, trying to allocate the right amount of memory to each app, waiting for Dreamweaver to finish a find and replace before switching apps because "otherwise it crashes" and so on, it made me realise just how much I now take for granted in OS X.

    Apps rarely crash, and when they do they never take down the system with them.

    Processes continue in the background when you switch between apps - leave Photoshop doing one task, set the Finder to copy gigs of data and then check your e-mail, whilst running streaming QuickTime movie, and the system is still responsive!

    Whilst in some respects OS X may seem slower than OS 9, as someone who uses OS X intensively on a daily basis, I can tell you that it makes my work substantially more productive.
     
  17. Beej macrumors 68020

    Beej

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    Buffy's bedroom
    #17
    I've been playing with Jaguar - it flies. QuartzExtreme makes everything so much snappier! Networking is heaps faster, too. And the spinning aqua drop is sooo much cooler than the old CD :) Don't listen to the lies I've heard all round the Internet, though - you still see it. I don't know what kinds of systems these poeple are running, but I'm using a G4 933 w/ 1/2 gig ram, and I see it. That said, I see it about 1/5 the time I see it in 10.1.5...

    The Jaguar GM is going to be unreal.
     
  18. gopher macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2002
    Location:
    Maryland, USA
    #18
    Mac OS X 10.1.5 finally fixes the issue for most older graphics cards on Macs. And someone has even made a patch for
    Powerbooks with unsupported graphics cards to make them use their graphics cards: http://www.macnn.com/news.php?id=14646

    As for more powerful, now that I have a bigger hard drive, I'm taking all my old CDs and expanding their archives. I was able to search for all the old archives and drag and drop them over Stuffit Expander. It expanded over 400 before Stuffit Expander quit, and the operating system never missed a beat. Multitasking while opening so many things at once is amazing.
     
  19. j763 macrumors 6502a

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    Nov 25, 2001
    Location:
    Champaign, IL, USA
    #19
    It's the most popular version of *nix on the desktop... It hasn't crashed once for me ever and i hit load averages of up to 8!! White G3 iBook before someone asks.
     
  20. sevag1 thread starter macrumors member

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    Jul 16, 2001
    #20
    Hmm okay.. i think i need to get more memory for my system (g4 733 QS 640mb ram gf2mx)... To the people with Photoshop 7, doesn't it run slow? compared to 9?
     
  21. Foocha macrumors 6502a

    Foocha

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    Jul 10, 2001
    Location:
    London
    #21
    Photoshop 7 in OS X is a tiny bit slower than Photoshop 6 in OS 9 - but way,way more stable, and it works in the background too.
     
  22. blakespot Administrator

    blakespot

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    Jun 4, 2000
    Location:
    Alexandria, VA
    #22
    Performance

    On some things OS 9 _is_ faster, but that is because there is less going in--far less. OS 9 is an antiquated OS, to the extreme. It constantly amazes me that OS 9 is considered a passable OS in today's world where its VM is an _option_ and where you specify the amount of memory an app has, and where there's no pre-emptive multitasking (and multi-threading is a hack under 9). I've said it before and I will say it again:

    Windows 95 is more robust than the latest version of OS 9.

    Certain operations under Win3.1, run on today's hardware (a fast P4 or Athlon) will be much faster than under Windows XP. That's because there's little going on "in the background" under Win 3.1, just like OS 9. (I make the comparison, but I will note that OS 9 _is_ more advanced than Win 3.1.) But so what? That's just the way it is. People don't run Win 3.1 today, they run XP as it is far more robust--and lots of things are faster under XP. It's just that Apple made the move so much more recently from it's venerable OS 9 to the modern OS X. I think people with the hardware that can handle it should not even look back.

    Also, remeber that part of OS X's solidity is the fact that the first release of the OS took place 14 years ago. It was called NEXTSTEP and OS X is a direct evolution of that OS:

    NEXTSTEP->OpenStep->Rhapsody->OS X Dev Preview->OS X

    It is not a new, untested OS. The first iteration was released to the public on NeXT hardware on October 11, 1988.



    blakespot
     
  23. barkmonster macrumors 68020

    barkmonster

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2001
    Location:
    Lancashire
    #23
    There's some wierd info about the Apple lisa's multitasking...

    on this site. They mention amongst other OS features such as GUI that it handles pre-emptive multitasking. Now if that's true, why would apple remove the feature when the Mac OS came out and only give us a Mac OS that CAN multitask properly by buying NeXT. I mean, surely as NeXTStep was the bastard son of the Mac OS and Unix the mac should have had something as stable as OS X over 10 years ago!
     
  24. OSeXy! macrumors regular

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    Jan 17, 2002
    Location:
    London (or virtually here)
    #24
    Re: How is mac osx the powerful OS that everyone says it is?

    It's just damned sexy. And sex is power.:cool:
     
  25. Foocha macrumors 6502a

    Foocha

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2001
    Location:
    London
    #25
    Let's face it - OS X is damn cool and we're all very cool for using it.

    Blackspot's post is exactly right - it's funny looking back and seeing how antiquated OS 9/8/7 now seems in comparison.
     

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