Seriously thinking of jumping over to OS X from Windows. Few Questions Inside

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by geokarbou, Dec 11, 2015.

  1. geokarbou macrumors member

    Oct 30, 2015
    Hello everyone,

    I am a relative newbie around here, have posted just a couple of times, but in the last few months I have been reading these forums daily and I am trying to get some real sense of Macs and OSX.

    I have been a Windows user my entire life and I have zero experience with OSX or even IOS. Not because I have something against Apple or anything like that, but simply because my first PC was a PC and as a child I wanted to be able to play games...that's how I stuck with windows machines.

    Too many years have passed since then and lately I am contemplating on getting a macbook (I wrote a thread about it in the Macbook section). There are a few features that have caught my eye and intrigued my interest.

    Since I have absolutely no freaking idea about OSX and what I win/lose migrating from Windows, what my advantages are and what my disadvantages (in relevance to my needs), I'd appreciate it if you could shed some light into it.

    I am a business consultant/analyst and professional copywriter, so 80% of my workload is performed through a browser: SaaS, Google Apps, Emailing, etc etc.

    I don't use any specific piece of software except for the office suite of course and Visio sometimes (I know this isn't available on MACs).

    But apart from these, everything I do I do it through a browser window. Furthermore I do a lot of reading, TONS of typing and really really heavy internet use (20+ heavy tabs open simultaneously).

    I don't care much about anything else operating-system-wise, just want a stable, smooth operating system that works as intended and it is pleasing to the eye :)

    How will I find the transition over to OSX? I am planning on keeping a Windows laptop laying around for when absolutely needed but I would like to make OSX my main operating system.

    Thinking of getting a MBP 13 with 16GB of RAM(hook it to 2 monitors when at home) so that I am task-heavy-proofed and should I like it, later in the future I may get an iMac too and use the MBP when on the move- outside of home.

    So if there is anyone who is or has been a situation similar to mine (from Windows to OSX or utilizing both systems) and could comment on his or her experience that would be amazing and really helpful to me.

    Any input you may have, please feel free to share it, I appreciate any little piece of detail.

    Thank you in advance,

  2. SandboxGeneral Moderator emeritus


    Sep 8, 2010
    Based on what you wrote your needs are, OS X should suit you just fine, as Windows does. Selecting the amount of RAM you did is wise if you keep a lot of browser tabs open and a few other apps. That will go a long way in helping things run smooth.

    Since most of your work is browser-based, I'd almost question the need to switch OS's. But the decision is entirely up to you, of course.

    Games are not what they are on Windows and the selection is slim in comparison.

    If you decide on a Mac, you can always get virtualization software like VMware and run Windows inside of it to do other apps, like Visio.

    Either way, sticking with Windows or switching to OS X should work out for you. I suppose it would be a decision based on budget and wants over needs.
  3. geokarbou thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 30, 2015
    - I am not playing any games at all. Unfortunately I grew out of it a few years now :(

    - Visio is the only thing I use that it's not available on Macs but I could find an alternative or just use a windows laptop for that when needed

    - Among other reasons, I have grown tired of Windows for so many years. I do like OS X from what I have seen and I'd like to try a transition. I guess I don't do any operating-system-binding task so it should be easy to go back and forth without losing anything. Another reason is the fact that I have been on the market for a new laptop for some time now and I am inclining towards MBP for so many reasons.

    Thank you for your fast reply :)

    Edit: Grammeeeer
  4. AFEPPL macrumors 68030


    Sep 30, 2014
    I moved to OS X a long time ago for much the reasons you mention - stability, but of late OS X has proven anything but stable on my rMBPs. I've recently started moving some of my stuff back the other way. My desktop machine is now W10 and is MORE stable than the laptops running OS X without doubt.

    I'm not trying to push you either direction, but moving OSs doesn't provide or guarantee stability.

    You also have a hybrid approach of running windows on the mac via parallels if you wanted to keep a foot in both camps.
    In terms of day to day stuff, the hardest tradition was the menus and icons in office. Things are just not in the same place and that annoyed me. Plus the missing "ignore" function in outlook for email threads you don't want to see..!
  5. Crazy Badger macrumors 65816

    Crazy Badger

    Apr 1, 2008
    OmniGraffle is a decent enough replacement for MS Visio and the also have a product called OmniPlan which will do much of what MS Project does. I made the switch back in 2008 as I was seduced by the original MacBook Air and am still using one now. Whilst OSX has probably been less hassle than the Windows of old, I think Windows from 7 onward has been pretty stable, and you still encounter the odd issue with OSX updates.

    I wouldn't have switched back in 2008 had it not been possible to run Windows on the MBA, and whilst I still have a Bootcamp partition (that I can access natively or as a VM) it's very rarely used.

    The new Surface devices and Windows 10 are making me think about a switch back, although I have some OSX apps now that I couldn't run in Windows (damn you OmniFocus) and I think I'd miss the seamless integration across my other Apple devices.

    Looking back, it was a relatively painless experience and one I'm glad I made!
  6. vkd Suspended


    Sep 10, 2012
    This paragraph leaves me in a state of serious disbelief and doubt.
  7. Weaselboy Moderator


    Staff Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    For a while I was a Mac user at home and a Windows user at work and at times it was a bit frustrating remembering where things were located on the screen in the two operating systems. I would find myself by instinct sliding the mouse up to the top right only to realize a second later I needed to be at the top left for example. Not a huge deal, but just an annoyance having to switch back and forth. You may be smarter than me and not have this issue at all. :)

    Apple has a lot of good info at this page as well as some "how to switch" type material. Might be helpful for you.

    From what you have described, I don't see any flaw in your game plan.
  8. AFEPPL macrumors 68030


    Sep 30, 2014
    I didn't ask for opinions on my experiences.
    I have multiple rMBP as per my sig - i get kernel panics and crashes on the MACs frequently, where as the old W10 machine is rock solid and has never hiccuped once. Thats "my" reality.

    Your post seems to be to provoke and stir up anger, rather than contribute to a discussion.
  9. glenthompson macrumors 68000


    Apr 27, 2011
    You didn't ay what size screen you were currently using. I personally find the 13" a little small and prefer the 15". Many are much happier with the 13" due to the smaller package. If you're used to a larger screen on a laptop you might want to spend some time with the 13" at a store making sure it is a good fit for you.

    Your plans sounds good. I think you will be very happy with the MBP. Make sure you get plenty of disk space for your expected needs since it can't be upgraded. If you end up wanting to run Windows via bootcamp or virtual machine you will need more.
  10. Wondercow macrumors 6502a

    Aug 27, 2008
    Toronto, Canada
    As others have mentioned, you can ditch the second laptop entirely if you use something like Parallels or Fusion. What they do is run Windows (the operating system) as an app on your Mac. Then you can run just about any program you like from the Windows world. It's generally a lot easier than using two computers as you have Windows programs and your Mac apps together on one system; switch between them with a mouse-click, copy and paste between them, import and export your work directly to the other OS, etc.

    I love the quotes around my. So who's reality is it really? ;)
  11. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    [MOD NOTE]
    Lets stay on topic, discuss the OP's questions
  12. geokarbou thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 30, 2015
    I wasn't aware that I can copy-paste between the apps that easy. That's great. Since Visio is the only program I use that's not on OS X I can just find an alternative like Crazy Badger mentioned: OmniGraffle, OmniPlan.

    I went by an Apple retailer yesterday and played around with the MacBooks. They are amazing machines...especially that 12" MacBook, it's amazingly beautiful - wish it didn't have the M core processor.
  13. shiekh macrumors member

    Sep 26, 2006
    I just made the jump the other way:

    I've been with the Mac now since the beginning in 1984... but things are changing; RAM is soldered down and machines are now getting glued shut, one can't even get in to change the CMOS battery. At one point I was hopeful that OS X would be issued for generic hardware, but that did not happen.

    Now Windows 10 is a free upgrade for people with Windows 7 and I have finally made the jump; not burning any bridges, just going with what is best for me, and being locked out of the hardware is personally a big issue. Gotta say the retina screen is something I have wanted for a long time now, but the option of putting a high resolution screen on a PC was a good bit cheaper, and the route I finally took.

    My views may be colored by the fact that I get broken stuff that I then fix for my own use, so often need to get to the insides. Way I see it, Windows and OS X (along with Linux) drive each other to heights neither would achieved alone.
  14. AlliFlowers Contributor


    Jan 1, 2011
    L.A. (Lower Alabama)
    I love the Mac hardware. There is nothing more beautiful than a Mac. They just feel good to use.

    If you want a Mac, buy a Mac.

    But honestly, from what you've described, you could get away with a $200 Chromebook.
  15. highlystrange macrumors member


    Aug 30, 2015
    ÜT: 42.710806,-71.447929
    If you use Microsoft Office a lot on your PC, and plan to use it on a Mac, be prepared for some changes. I've used Word on both and the PC version of Word is more full-featured than the Mac version. I imagine the same may be true for Excel and Outlook.
  16. glenthompson macrumors 68000


    Apr 27, 2011
    You couldn't upgrade anything on the original Mac either without some mods.

    Yes, Windows PCs are usually cheaper to buy but studies have found that the total cost of ownership is higher. Pay me now or pay me later.
  17. geokarbou thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 30, 2015
    I eat up at least 5-6GB+ of RAM so Chromebooks are out of the question.

    I don't think a Chromebook can withstand 20+ tabs on Chrome with SaaS, Google Docs and other apps open + Excel with several sheets, Word, Photoshop for some image editing and some IDE.
  18. imacdave1 macrumors newbie

    Feb 1, 2015
    After using nothing but Windows for 20 years I took the leap and bought an iMac and it's been a pleasant experience. I'm a hardware guy and love to upgrade and miss being able to open up the case on a Windows computer and installing more ram or new graphics card. I've watched a few videos on YouTube on how to remove the screen on an iMac but don't feel confident enough to do it so if I want to ever put more memory in or install a bigger hardrive I have to pay someone to do it and the'll have the computer for a week till they can do necessary repairs. It just isn't worth the hassle so installing new hardware on my iMac isn't in my foreseeable future
  19. DisraeliGears macrumors newbie


    Nov 8, 2015
    I switched from using Windows to a 2014 rMPB fairly recently, and found the transition painless. I'm fairly tech savvy, and there are times I need to turn off my brain (I don't need to be cleaning my RAM cache nearly as much as I do) but for my needs Mac has been great. The thing I had hoped, and delivered pretty darn well, is interconnectivity. Like a fair amount of folks these days, my first Apple product was an iPhone, then an iPad, and after getting an Apple TV, when my last Laptop gave up the ghost, I pulled the trigger and fully flipped. iMessage in particular is delightful, getting all your messages and called pushed from your phone to your computer automatically is delightful.

    As for your needs particularly the latest update for Office (Office 2016) on Mac runs pretty stable and has most features you could need, tho I hear the earlier Offices aren't particularly great. As someone else mentioned, there is always dual booting or virtualization but it seems like the vast majority of what you do wouldn't require it. If you still enjoy games, Mac is slightly underrated as a fair amount of games have been ported and (for the 2014 at least) IRIS GPU works well for me (I really only play strategy games on computers, Steam for Mac has a good selection). Of course you sacrifice a lot of battery life for though.

    Hardware wise, I've never minded small laptops and small screens, so the '13 inch is fine by me (I've had smaller) and acts as a great middle ground between the ultralight but non retina MBA, the ultralight but underpowered new MB, and the slightly heftier '15 inch MBP. I think all new Macs at this point have them standard but make sure your hard drive is an SSD though, the performance difference is quite notable.
  20. bent christian, Dec 17, 2015
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2015

    bent christian Suspended

    bent christian

    Nov 5, 2015
    The biggest mistake Windows users make is in thinking that all Windows machines are the same.

    I use both operating systems for work and at home. On a well-designed machine made of quality parts, there is really no difference in stability between OSX and Windows 7 (can't speak about 10). Our Dell notebook (Win 7) from 2009 is ready to die any day now. So slow. So hot. The Thinkpad (Win 7) I bought in 2007 still runs and fells like new and will no doubt last for two or three years more. Apple has added much greater keyboard shortcuts and functionality to El Capitan, and (finally) gave the ability to empty single items from the Trash without some contrived Terminal code. The new OS closes much of the gaps that made me prefer Windows for so many years.

    Apple products are luxury items. A premium price tag comes with that symbol of status. They are not necessarily better, but always are more expensive than their counterparts. If you want to try a new operating system, it might be a good idea to buy used. As others have said, you can run Windows on a Mac, but at that point, you are paying a lot more than you should for a machine that can run that operating system well.
  21. tdale macrumors 65816

    Aug 11, 2013
    Christchurch, N.Z.
    Why? I feel an emotive support for Apple is clouding you. Thee forums will inform the many issues that die hard Apple users have with OSX and iOS as well as the iPhone and Macs. They all have issues. Rushed out too fast etc is arguably the cause.
  22. tdale macrumors 65816

    Aug 11, 2013
    Christchurch, N.Z.
    Thats not correct. You are comparing a high end Mac with a generic PC that could be anywhere from cheap and nasty to high end. Compare like with like.
  23. tdale macrumors 65816

    Aug 11, 2013
    Christchurch, N.Z.
    I switched from a lifetime with PC's. I didn't want a Mac, or OSX, my goal was to maximise integration with my iPhone and iPad. No other reason.

    What you can do in Windows you can do in OSX, very similar or similar-ish. There appears to be an equivalent for almost everything, and with W10 you get the Mission Control type of thing using multiple screens. The Windows hourglass is equivalent to the beachball, beachball is not uncommon.

    Finder sux. Cannot maintain the column width you want
    Windows: Why do my windows occasionally change size or not fill the screens I need to manually correct that.
    Wifi to SMB: Long standing issue. I fixed by BUYING an Airport and cabling where I can

    Macs are not the dream machine, ultra reliable that the fans say. There are always some issue going on, my late 2103 rMBP has been fine though. My years old Windows laptops were always fine. rarely an issue. I'd tend to avoid any 1.0 Apple device though.

    Gestures. get a handle on those, awesome.
    Shortcuts, many.
    Prettier than W10, although you can customise W10 to a degree for the UI
    Most apps are self contained, no crud going everywhere in the registry/HDD

    As you aren't integrating other Apple devices, I'd suggest getting/borrowing and older Mac with a recent OSX to play with.
    I found the change clunky, there is a learning curve. OSX nor W10 are intuitive, you need to learn where everything is.
  24. bent christian Suspended

    bent christian

    Nov 5, 2015

    hit the letter "x"

    (this is the keyboard shortcut to maximize a window)

    Alt-spacebar "r"

    (will restore the window to the original small size, allowing you to get to what is behind)
  25. tdale macrumors 65816

    Aug 11, 2013
    Christchurch, N.Z.
    Thanks BC.

    I press alt spacebar nothing happens.

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