First MacBook: 13 Air Ultimate

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by mario24601, Nov 27, 2010.

  1. mario24601 macrumors regular

    Nov 26, 2010
    Yesterday ordered my first MacBook. Been using pc most my life, once I had a Apple IIe but guess that doesn't really count. I ordered a 13 Air Ultimate, shows shipped from China so hope to get in week or so. This will be my first real venture into OSX so I'm excited to try it. The price was about $122 less than regular price directly from Apple.

    I do have couple of questions:
    Do I need virus protection? All my pcs have Norton 2011. What should I get for the Air?
    What's best way to load Win7 on Air? I heard there are couple ways to do it. But not sure what latest and greatest is. Any recommendation?

    Been reading this forum for so time, lots of good info. I'm sure now I will be on more!

    BTW: I have been using Apple stuff for sometime. Have 3GS, prior had the first gen. I also have 32GB iPad wifi. And the new touch iPod, that kids use.
  2. AceFernalld macrumors 68000


    Mar 3, 2008
    First off I'd like to say I'm VERY jealous of your purchase. :D

    I've never installed any type of anti-spyware/malware programs on my iMac or my MacBook Pro, which I've now had for 2 1/4 and 1 year(s), respectively. Never had ANY problems with either of them. They basically run just as fast as they did the day that I purchased them.

    As for running Windows, there are 3 options as far as I know.
    Not really sure which is best, but I do know that Boot Camp is free, so that's what I would personally use.

    Congrats on your new OS X purchase, I'm sure you'll love it! :)

    Hope I helped!
  3. psirix macrumors member

    Aug 14, 2009
    Detroit, MI
    Congratulations on your purchase! In terms of antivirus/antispyware software on the Mac, you shouldn't need anything. For running Windows, I would suggest using a virtualized environment such as VMware, Parallels, or Virtualbox. It will take up more resources as opposed to running natively with boot camp, but in that event you shouldn't have to worry about getting viruses on your virtual machine. If you do, you can simply use a snapshot of the virtual machine prior to infection, and you're back to a stable environment without having to spend time reloading your OS or removing the virus. Is there a specific reason you need to run Windows on the Mac? Certain applications that are not available on the OS X platform?
  4. cleric macrumors 6502a


    Jun 7, 2008
    Minneapolis, MN
    Unless you are going to game or use some very specific software you probably dont need windows at all.
  5. gwsat macrumors 68000


    Apr 12, 2008
    I am running Windows 7 in a VMware Fusion virtual machine on my 13 inch Ultimate MBA. The MBA runs Windows apps and OS X apps simultaneously with as much speed and stability as the MBP does, although the MBP has 6GB of RAM. The built in Windows 7 anti malware program, Windows Defender, has been terrific. I have been using Windows Defender for nearly a year and have not as yet contracted any viruses.
  6. mario24601 thread starter macrumors regular

    Nov 26, 2010
    Thanks all for replies. I have a lot to learn about OS X. This will mostly be used to surf, movies, word, light maybe you are right. I might not really need Windows, just thought it would be easier transition if had windows on it but can't really think of anything I need that I should not be able to do natively on Air.

    Re virus protection, if downloading something that contains a virus does OS X give you some sort of warning, like Norton or Kaspersky would?

    Will all my USB drives be recognized by Air? Also My docs such as word docs, excel, pics and movies?
  7. ZenErik macrumors 6502

    Dec 22, 2007
    You won't be downloading any viruses. Almost every virus around comes in the form of a .exe file. You can't even run those on a Mac. Really, don't worry about virus protection.
  8. Mac Composer macrumors member

    Oct 29, 2010
    Agree with the others, don't worry about viruses, but also stay away from less than reputable websites. And get a backup plan going with Time Machine. In the event that you do download something that messes with your system, go back in time to fix it.
  9. MaxMike macrumors 6502

    Dec 6, 2009
    +1 on time machine. my hard drive crashed in my mini and i was back running as it used to be in a few hours thanks to the backups.
  10. psirix macrumors member

    Aug 14, 2009
    Detroit, MI
    Just my opinion, if you put windows on it you'll probably be less likely to determine if OS X can meet your needs, as well as learning how to navigate around. I know this from my own experience because I did the same thing. Once I forced myself to learn OS X by taking Winbloze of my machine, I found that OS X meets all of my needs and is much more "logical" to use than Windows.

    For virus protection you will not receive any warnings because you won't have any software installed. There are antivirus solutions available, but you shouldn't need them. As long as you are downloading and using reputable sources on the internet this shouldn't be an issue. Also keep in mind there is such a larger market for viruses/malware for a PC than a Mac. Therefore most of the viruses/malware you could run into are designed for the PC, which means the code is useless on the Mac and won't infect the system.

    Your USB devices should recognize just fine. Keep in mind Snow Leopard won't automatically allow you to write to a NTFS partition, but you can make this happen however it isn't necessarily recommended. However if you're just talking USB thumb drives or other small media it's probably formatted in FAT so you won't have to worry about writing to it as it works natively. All excel, word, pictures, and movies should play fine. You'll probably want to pickup a copy of office for Mac, as well as a third-party video player depending on the types of movie files you have.

  11. revelated macrumors 6502a


    Jun 30, 2010
    Negative. DO worry about certain viruses. But deal with them differently than you would in Windows. The main one to look out for are trojan-type viruses. Browsing safe websites is a start, but you really need to be aware of how OS X attempts to protect you so that you don't go screwing stuff up.

    Anytime an application is installed, Snow Leopard will prompt you for the login credential you created when you set up the computer the first time. DO NOT forget this login. Make sure you only enter it for apps that you recognize and trust. Be aware of every app you try to install and what its purpose is, and make sure you do due diligence about each app before installing.

    If your Firewall is not enabled, turn it on.

    Apps when run the first time will ask for permission to allow incoming connections. As with the installation, be aware of which apps you allow incoming connections to. Most apps you come across do not need this allowance for day-to-day usage, but a lot do. Learn the difference.

    Other things to know:

    - If I were you, and this is my personal assessment as someone who comes from both worlds...I would not give full credence to someone who says "you don't need Windows". It's faulty logic. If you're coming from the Windows world, there are likely things that Windows does for you that kept you there that long. There are going to be things that Snow Leopard either can't give you or can't give you as seamlessly as Windows. Too many to list, but my suggestion to you is to grab a copy of VMWare (it's more stable than Parallels), migrate your PC into a VM, and continue from there. Use it when you need to, then wean yourself off of Windows. Be aware of any applications that Windows offers that have no Mac OS analog so you know when you need to access the VM. It will take many months for you to get to the point where Snow Leopard is doing the majority of your required tasks for you. I'm two years into using Mac OS and I still keep four Windows VMs because I have to.
  12. ZenErik macrumors 6502

    Dec 22, 2007
    This guy seems to know his stuff. Either way, in my 15 years using Apple computers I have never had any issues with no anti-virus, no anti-malware or anything of the sort.
  13. aristobrat macrumors G5

    Oct 14, 2005
    For that type of situation, I'd recommend you use a virtual machine to run Windows. The main ones are VMWare Fusion or Parallels Desktop. They both cost money (whereas Boot Camp is free), but they don't require you to partition your hard drive (so you'll end up saving hard drive space with a virtual machine) and makes the overall installation of Windows easy.

    Your Air should be able to read any Windows drive. Depending on how the drive was formatted, it may or may not be able to write to it. Macs can write to drives that are formatted with FAT, but can't write to drives formatted with NTFS, unless you install some additional programs.

    You will need iWork, Microsoft Office for Mac, or NeoOffice for your Mac to be able to open and edit Word/Excel/PowerPoint files.

    FWIW, Apple's done a fairly good job of answering questions that you're likely to have here:
  14. ZenErik macrumors 6502

    Dec 22, 2007
    How about OpenOffice? I have only used it on Windows and Linux, but it seems to be another solid option. The Mac version is more than likely sufficient, right?
  15. aristobrat macrumors G5

    Oct 14, 2005
    NeoOffice is a Mac port of OfficeOffice. It seems to get recommended over the regular Mac OfficeOffice release, although I don't have much first-hand experience with either. :)
  16. cherry su macrumors 65816

    cherry su

    Feb 28, 2008
    If you're only using a handful of windows apps, consider using Wine instead of investing in a copy of windows.
  17. dmelgar macrumors 68000

    Apr 29, 2005
    Avoid running a VM if you don't need to. If you're mostly browsing and looking at Office files, just get MS Office for Mac and use Safari. Done. No need to mess with setting up and maintaining a whole virtual windows box. Makes life much easier for you.

    Antivirus isn't needed because there is so little malware out there.

    Get Little Snitch. Its an outbound firewall and will alert you whenever a program is trying to call out from your Mac. If you don't understand why the program is calling out, block it at least temporarily and investigate. Chances are its part of Mac OS X or part of some other legit app, but its the best insurance against installing malware phoning home with your info.

    There has been some of the first malware for a Mac out there. Its usually a trojan. Something that looks legitimate but is evil. Snow Leopard actually detects a couple of them if you attempt to download them. The one's I know of were included in bootleg versions of legit programs. If you stick with reputable websites and application install images, you should be fine.

    I periodically run ClamXav. Its a free open source scanner for malware. Its not really needed but can provide some piece of mind.

    Realistically, you have to worry more about email phishing attacks which have nothing to do with Mac but just trick you to going to their website and providing your credentials to a fake website.

    I would avoid OpenOffice. It doesn't work well enough for most folks. MS Office is available and works well.

    Wine is too hard to configure and setup on a Mac. There's a prepackaged version thats not free that helps, but is still hard to manage and doesn't work for lots of apps.

    Avoid windows if you can.
  18. revelated macrumors 6502a


    Jun 30, 2010
    If you use any application that does not have an OSX version, you're using a Windows VM. Period. And there are quite a few of them. Don't know if you use any of them or not, you'll have to do that research.

    Home Media Center - Windows 7/Windows Media Center destroys Snow Leopard in this regard.

    If you're a gamer - forget about trying to force Snow Leopard to do something it swallows in. Windows destroys the competition here.

    Office 2011/Outlook 2011 for Mac does not support Exchange 2003. Office 2010/Outlook 2010 for Windows does. If you need to sync to your email from home and don't want to use the OWA page, you can use Entourage, but it pales in comparison to Outlook.

    Blu-Ray drives - if you care about such things, a Windows VM will allow you to install the proper drivers to run a Blu-Ray external. It's hit-or-miss on Snow Leopard.

    ActiveX - some sites just require it. Safari can handle some but not all. If the website is critical and it requires Internet Explorer, you're using Windows. These should be rare, but they ARE out there. Some news sites still use ActiveX to render their videos for some stupid reason.

    Like I said before: one should not assume that Snow Leopard can do everything Windows 7 can. It can't. The things it does do, it does well. However, there are still things Windows 7 stands tall on. Just do the VM, migrate the PC, work it until you are comfortable and wean yourself off over time. I promise you, if you try to just make the leap off of Windows you WILL be frustrated with Snow Leopard. There are just too many hacks and software addons that you have to download to get Snow Leopard to do things that Windows does out of the box. Default Apps, Flip4Mac, NTFS 3G, Perian, MacFUSE...

    Baby steps. Do not rush it. Get a VM, get comfortable, take it in stride.
  19. gdeputy macrumors 6502a


    Jul 23, 2008
    New York
    Good Luck!

    13" is my first Mac as well, and so far after a few days I've enjoyed it. Certainly not as fast as my PC desktop, but I wanted a laptop for portability without sacrificing the screen size of the MBP, and this screen blows MBP IMHO out of the water. I went to best buy multiple times before ordering at to compare the pro line with the air line, and overall I'm satisfied. the price was high, but hey, my girlfriend bought it for me for christmas (came early :) ) so I can't complain.

    My initial impressions were, the build quality is far ahead of any windows box I've owned (and I've owned alot). The screen is beautiful, better than any laptop I've owned (only 4 to date), and so far I really enjoy the ease of use with the operating system. On my windows box I do alot of tweaking, I overclock and it's nice to not have to worry about troubleshooting a problem (apple genius FTW) or getting a BSOD. Overall I'm happy with it, I haven't had a chance to travel much, but I plan on using it for light introductory photo editing, and some light video editing (STRONGLY considering getting an entry level DSLR, either that or a HD Cam, but the draw for awesome photo's is calling me. Might grab a DSLR and I always have my iPhone 4 for video, or thinking of getting a cheap Flip HD).

    Anyways, best of luck to you in learning the OS. I've only spent maybe 10 hours with it and I'm starting to get ahold of everything pretty well, and figuring out how to mirror my windows knowledge to OSX. I will say so far that I absolutely LOVE expose.. but yeah.. I'm still a newbie. Feels good to own both OSX and windows boxes.. strong believer of both being very cool operating systems that both have strength and weakness.
  20. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    You don't need any virus protection for your Mac, since no virus exists in the wild that can run on current Mac OS X.
    Again, there are no Mac viruses in the wild. You don't need such warnings.

    If you want to be protected against malware, read this:
  21. KPOM macrumors G5

    Oct 23, 2010
    Congratulations. I've been using a MacBook Air as my main home computer since early 2008, and I recently upgraded to an "Ultimate 13" model, too.

    Windows 7 runs quite well on Parallels 6. However, if you just want the ability to use Windows, you can also install it through Boot Camp, which comes with OS X (you just need a Windows disc and an external DVD drive with which to install it). There is also a free program called VirtualBox which is similar to Parallels and VMWare Fusion. The main difference between using Boot Camp and something like VirtualBox, Parallels, or Fusion is that with the latter 3, you can run Windows side by side with OS X. With Boot Camp, you have to restart your computer to switch between Windows and OS X.

    Depending on available SSD space, it might be helpful to install Windows and then migrate your old PC files and programs to it. I don't use Windows very often as the Mac has most of the software I need. But I do use Quicken for Windows and Internet Explorer (as my office remote access sites need Internet Explorer) occasionally.
  22. KPOM macrumors G5

    Oct 23, 2010
    I'd suggest checking out the Switch 101 page on Apple's website.

    For me, some of the most significant differences are the following:
    • You use the "command" key where you would use the "control" key in Windows (e.g command-Q to quit)
    • You have only one "button" on the trackpad. You can use Ctrl-Click, or two-finger click instead of the right mouse button. You can also program the lower right or left corner of the trackpad to act as the right mouse button.
    • "Delete" acts more like Backspace in Windows. To replicate the Windows "DEL" key, type fn-Delete.
    • There is no "Start" button. Some of the functions are in the little Apple menu. However, if you drag your Applications folder to the right side of the Dock (just right of the little "divider"), it will put a shortcut there (called an "Alias") that acts a little like a Start button.
    • System Preferences is like Control Panel. OS X doesn't present you as many customizations as Windows.
    • Get to know the multi-touch trackpad gestures. It makes using OS X a lot easier.
  23. greygray macrumors 68000


    Oct 22, 2009
    You'll have to use Photobooth to be a professional camwhore.

    :eek: :D
  24. millerb7 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 9, 2010

    You can get them, they come in many forms. Trojans, spyware, keyloggers, malware, etc etc. DO NOT listen to people who say you CANNOT get them. That is just 100% wrong. That being said, it is MUCH MUCH harder to get them in OSX than Windows. As already stated, the biggest issue you will have is coming from untrusted websites. Just be smart. If you know what you are downloading on your computer, you're fine. Don't go randomly downloading anything and everything. If you abide by this VERY important rule (as you should with ANY computer and ANY operating system), you shouldn't have any issues with viruses at all.

    I have never used anti-virus, and have only had 1 virus in 10+ years using a Mac.

    As far as windows... do yourself a favor... GET IT. You'll need it eventually for some really small stupid thing, and it'll irritate the hell out of you if you don't have it.

    I'd HIGHLY suggest using parallels 6. It's amazing. I don't see a need to actually partition off the SSD and install bootcamp, just virtual machine it with parallels 6 and be a happy camper that random rainy day you want to do something windows related.

    If you are going to actually game in windows, then I'd suggest doing a bootcamp partition as gaming+virtual machines normally gives poor results....

    Welcome aboard, and ENJOY the new toy... it's a good machine.
  25. stockscalper macrumors 6502a


    Aug 1, 2003
    Area 51
    If you are going to run OS X only programs then you won't need any virus protection, but if you are going to run any Windows software via Bootcamp, Fusion or Parallels then you will need to install a good Windows based virus program.

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