Macbook Air for web-development

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Ratel, Apr 3, 2017.

  1. Ratel macrumors newbie

    Apr 3, 2017
    Hi, guys.
    I am thinking about buying my first Macbook. I have been coding first in C# for a while and around a year ago moved to web development. I planning to get a full-time job as a web developer soon. Is it really the fact that vast majority of web developers uses OSX? Is it true that as a web developer I am expected to use Mac OS? If so, Is Macbook Air enough for that? I don't want to spend more money than necessary on that. I wanted to point out that for 90% of the time I want to use external monitor, mouse and keyboard.
  2. 960design macrumors 68030

    Apr 17, 2012
    Destin, FL
    Congrats! Good piece of kit.
    Nope. I do. Actually, I do not know the actual percentage. In all fairness, I have used Windows and Ubuntu for web development. I just like MacOSX.
    Nope. Only a pretentious asshat would 'expect' that.
    Yes, A Macbook Air is more than enough to handle web coding. To be honest, you could code with a RaspberryPi and a 5in monitor. The only thing about the Air is the screen size. With web coding, you will be staring at the glass for very long periods of time. The Retina display is much easier on the eyes, but I have old eyes.
    You, have it all figured out. That would be a fantastic development environment.

    If I may, and you have a few extra bucks, grab a docking station to simplify the run and code experience. Plus, it looks pretty awesome. Something like this:

    *Not recommending that particular model, just grabbed the first thing that popped up in the search.
  3. Ratel thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 3, 2017
    Thanks a lot for your response. You have answered all my questions.
  4. PatrickTheDev macrumors newbie

    Apr 3, 2017

    I would say get something slighlty more powerful. I am a dev at a tech company. I use C# all the time and I do lots really mainly front end. I would get a MacBook Pro. Especially since it will be powerful enough to do lots from front end to heave backend stuff. Especially since VisualStudio now runs on mac.
  5. theluggage macrumors 68040

    Jul 29, 2011
    No, but it is a popular choice.

    Websites and applications are most commonly hosted on Linux servers. MacOS is a Unix system so, under the hood, the file system, command line etc. are very similar to Linux, and nearly all the (free) tools and applications used for web development and servers under Linux are available for Mac. So you're developing in an environment similar to the one to which you will deploy. Install a package manager like "macports" or "homebrew" and you can install whatever versions of Apache, PHP, Node.js, MySQL, MariaDB, mongo, git, nginx you want to target (they're mostly available as standalone Mac packages too, but if you need a bunch of them and want to match & switch versions its worth using a package manager).
    Of course, Linux would be even closer, but on the Mac you can also run many key "industry standard" PC applications like MS Office and Adobe Creative Suite(...even if these aren't your first choice, you're often forced to use them by clients or colleagues) as well as many excellent Mac applications (such as Pixelmator and Affinity Designer as cheaper alternatives to Adobe) which tend to be better than the functional but rather clunky alternatives on Linux.

    There's no reason you can't do web development on a Windows PC - all the tools are there (and you can always run a local Linux server in a virtual machine - plus, give the new Windows Linux Subsystem a year or so to get out of Beta and things may change) but the environment is very different (different rules for pathnames, drive letters, Powershell vs. bash). Then, of course, you might be targeting Windows server technologies (IIS, SQL Server, .Net framework) in which case, using a PC and Visual Studio probably makes sense. Still, with a Mac you can always run Windows under a virtual machine.

    Yes. Unless you're also doing serious graphics work or video editing (which sometimes go hand-in-hand with web development) an Air should be fine (It'll happily drive a 27" 1440 display).

    Just go for 8GB RAM and at least a 256GB SSD (not the entry level 128GB): its likely that you will want to run virtual machines with Windows (if only for testing sites on IE/Edge) or Linux (simulating servers) or install something like Docker.

    Of course, spending more on a MacBook Pro will get you a nicer, faster machine with a far better display and better long term prospects - but it will also nuke your finances!

    But lets be realistic here - if you're on a shoestring here, a PC will do the job and let you hone your HTML5, CSS, Javascript or whatever skills. At the end of the day, web development needs a text editor and a web browser, and any personal computer sold in the last decade will do. (1) Get good at HTML5/JavaScript - on a $35 Raspberry Pi if you have to - (2) Get good job (3) Profit (4) Buy Mac system of your dreams. In that order.

    If you've got prospective employers in mind, ask questions or look at job ads and see what they're asking for.
  6. Ratel thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 3, 2017
    Thanks a lot for your advice. I think I will follow the step you have mentioned. I like listening to smart people. Thanks agian.
  7. pabletoreto macrumors newbie


    Dec 4, 2018
    C# in MacOs? yes yes I know VS Core is out there but is that all you need? if you are oriented to Web Api ok, ven if you want to develop a small--yeah a small-- MVC App but is that all you need? if you want to create(just for example) an Angular-node App yeah, the mac is good for you, actually any computer with 4gb ram and HDD is good

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6 April 3, 2017