Moving from Windows to Mac

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by kingofsting, Jan 6, 2017.

  1. kingofsting macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2016
    #1
    I've not used a Mac to any great extent since I was in college in the early 1990s. Since then, I've been almost exclusively Windows on my desktop with a bit of Linux thrown in there. I'm a Civil Engineer, so most of the design software we use is windows based.

    Recently I got a wild hair and purchased a MacBook Pro. Needless to say, I'm really loving this thing. I'm loving it partially because I was really bored/tired of Windows and partially because the UI is just so dang slick. The stuff you need is just right there with 1-2 clicks in macOS, whereas you need to dial down to get to things in windows.

    I'm wondering how reasonable it is to convert over to using a Mac as my daily driver, using parallels in coherence mode for apps that have to be run in windows. My work network is Active Directory, so this adds a layer of complexity to the situation, but I can join both my Mac and the Windows 10 VM in Parallels to the domain, so theoretically I should be able to do all the windows stuff I could do before on my PC.

    Probably 60% of the time, I'm in MS Word and Outlook, which run native on macOS anyway. Its just those times I need to pull up CAD or other design software that I'd need to work in windows.

    I'd appreciate some experiences and thoughts on the topic. Thanks,
     
  2. kschendel macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2014
    #2
    If you're willing to run Outlook on the Mac, that's a big part of the battle in my experience. (I loathe Outlook, run Thunderbird for work email, and there are various hassles.) I'd say it depends on your environment. If you are in a medium to large company with a Windows oriented IT department that is too busy to bother with you, it can probably be done, but you'll be on your own for any corporate network related issues. A smaller or more flexible environment will make it easier.

    I've run fully Mac (and linux) for years now. I think it's perfectly possible as long as there aren't IT or departmental forces actively working against you. I use Virtualbox when I need to run Windows, a couple times a year; for your situation, Parallels or VMware is probably a better answer. (VBox wins for me because it's free and I don't care that it's slower.)
     
  3. kingofsting thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2016
    #3
    Thanks for the info. I've been running Outlook 2016 on my Macbook and there's very little difference from the windows version, once I figured out you need to tell it to only sync headers. I have a very large mailbox and the Mac version of Outlook defaults to syncing the entire thing locally, which for me was Gigs of data. Once I figured out you needed to tell Outlook to sync only headers, it works fine.

    The thing that seems a bit difficult to me, at this point, is how to interact with shares on the windows server. We run kind of a hybrid roaming profile on our Windows clients, where certain directories like Documents and Desktop are redirected to the server. This is nice when you log in on another machine, but doesn't really seem to translate to anything Mac related.
     
  4. kschendel macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2014
    #4
    I'm not Windows-y enough to quite follow what you mean about the roaming shares or roaming profile, but Mac's can definitely access Windows shares. Finder, Go menu, Connect To Server, and use the url smb::/shareroot/dir/dir/dir. It sounds like you are talking about a sort of automounted desktop (almost SunOS like!), and I'm not quite sure how that would work on the Mac; but I suspect there might be a way to work with it.

    My other "trick" (which may only work because my company isn't Mac hostile) is to play dumb when some sort of windows related directive is issued. "Gee, I'm running a Mac, how do I do that?" 2/3 of the time the issue is irrelevant, and the rest of the time I get a translation.
     
  5. kingofsting thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2016
    #5
    When you log into active directory from a windows client, you can have certain directories re-directed to the server (Example: Documents). The re-directed directories act like local directories, but they are in fact smb shares. This mainly helps backup your crap and also allows you to log in on any machine and have access to your content without it all being synced to the machine you are logging into. I don't know that this is necessary that big of a deal if I can't get it to work with a Mac client.

    I see that there are some apps one can buy for Mac that helps integrate with Active Directory. Maybe I will play with these a bit.
     
  6. satcomer macrumors 603

    satcomer

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2008
    Location:
    The Finger Lakes Region
    #6
    Look at OS X alias (just like Windows shortcuts).
     
  7. dpowert2 macrumors newbie

    dpowert2

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2017
    Location:
    Dublin, Ireland
    #7
    If you hate Outlook, you might like the email client we built - Hiri (www.hiri.com). We built it as an alternative to Outlook. Would love to hear your thoughts on it.
     
  8. kschendel macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2014
    #8
    I glanced at Hiri, but did not try it. My workflow is extremely simple in general and a simple mail client like Thunderbird takes care of everything I need. Hiri looks like it might have some useful features for someone in a less single-focused position than me. Or, if I were just starting out and didn't have a bunch of T-bird setup already done, I might be more interested.

    Most of my Thunderbird issues are the occasional screw-up when the Exchange side decides that it can't be bothered to answer IMAP or SMTP requests just now. That seems to happen less these days. There is very little functionality that I want from my email client other than basic reading, composing, and a few simple rules based on sender.
     
  9. dpowert2 macrumors newbie

    dpowert2

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2017
    Location:
    Dublin, Ireland
    #9
    I use email the same way myself :) Forgive the shameless plug!
     

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