Switch to Lion or stay with Snow Leopard?

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Lion (10.7)' started by wrx, Sep 5, 2011.

  1. wrx macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2011
    #1
    Hi!

    I am considering a change to Lion, but after some hours of research here on this forum I'm not so sure anymore. That's why I am seeking your advice.

    Currently I'm running Snow Leopard 10.6.8 on an Mid 2007 24" iMac (the first generation with the aluminum body) with a 2.4GHz Core2Duo, 4GB RAM (which already is the maximum!) and the ATI Radeon HD 2600 with 256MB RAM.

    So far everything is fine and I don't really have any performance issues what so ever - my machine is actually still quite snappy.
    Apart from "standard" use (internet, e-mail) I regulary use MS Office 2008, iPhoto, iMovie, Aperture 3, watch HD Videos (720p and 1080i/p with QuickTime Player 7 and VLC, use Skype for videocalls, play Civ5 (with Steam) and do some video encoding.
    Occasionaly I run Win XP in a virtural machine, I also have a Win XP in a Boot Camp installation.

    I have a Time Machine backup disk.

    - Would a switch to Lion bring performance issues? (big issue)
    - How's the current situation with Lion compatible versions of common software? When I switched from Leopard to Snow Leopard that was quite a problem.
    - What would happen to my Boot Camp Win XP? (minor issue)

    Thanks :)
     
  2. paulsalter macrumors 68000

    paulsalter

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #2
    Performance seems to vary so much between people, the only way to see for certain is to try it, if it doesn't work then revert back to SL until more updates are out.

    Are you interested in the new ways that Lion works or do you prefer how SL does things, there are quite a few changes to workflow in Lion

    On you performance question, I am on a Mid 2007 MacBook, 2.16 GHz & 2 GB RAM and performance is the same as SL (the only app for me that consumes lots of RAM is Safari, I occasionally have to re open it to free up some RAM)
     
  3. wrx thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2011
    #3
    That's exactly what concerns me and why I started my own thread, providing my hardware specs and roughly the programs I use.
    From what I found through reading all the threads is that notebooks seem to "suffer" more than desktops...


    I am aware of that and have already spent enough time with Lion. I simply believe that when it is possible, stick with the newest release of OS X (after the first major update ;) ) - all new apps will be written for Lion, etc. etc.


    So you're on my pro-list ;)
    I rarely use Safari, 98% of the time I use Opera, then Firefox/Chrome and then Safari. I don't know, I never got comfortable with Safari. Even on my iPad I don't like Safari, prefer Terra.
     
  4. tommy227 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2011
    Location:
    NYC
    #4
    I would switch to Lion. Its newer, faster and more user friendly. It has features like mission control (better than exposé) better language and character support. Multi-touch gestures, launchpad, full screen apps, resume, autosave and most of these can be turned on or off.

    HOWEVER, there is no more Rosetta which runs PPC apps so if you have any of those you might not want to upgrade.

    Lion is only $30 and newer faster lighter stronger & nicer than Snow Leopard
     
  5. Nuck81 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2009
    Location:
    Western Kentucky
    #5
    You seem to do the same things I do with my MacBook. I consider myself to be slightly more than a casual user. While I like lion, staying with snow leopard would have served me in the same way. I can't tell much of a difference other than cosmetic changes. And I rarely use mission control or launchpad since my most used programs are in my dock.

    To do over again I would have waited
     
  6. talmy macrumors 601

    talmy

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2009
    Location:
    Oregon
    #6
    Clone your current drive, update and see for yourself. Nothing "show stopping" here, but auto-save/resume/versions will have you rethinking how you use the computer. I consider it a plus, but it sure is different. There are lots of bugs, but I've been seeing them more on my iMac (multiple monitor support is terrible now) than on my MacBook. For really light use (I've got two minis that run nothing but Plex) there is no reason to upgrade at all.
     
  7. wrx thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2011
    #7
    Even concidering my - I hate to say it - older iMac?

    ----------

    Since I have a backup on my Time Machine harddrive, I really don't see the need to clone my internal harddrive. If I were to upgarde I would simply restart my iMac (which I don't do to often ;) ), make a manual backup precedure, unplug the Time Machine volume and start with the upgrade process. That way I could always restore my Snow Leopard. This would mean no backups until I'm sure that Lion is right for me, but I can live with that.

    Multimonitoring is no longer an option for my since I moved the iMac into an other room with no TV.

    ----------

    So do I :cool:
     
  8. hexonxonx macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2007
    Location:
    Denver Colorado
    #8
    Some of the features such as gestures won't really benefit you since you use an iMac. Air Drop most likely won't work either. I'm not so sure the rest of the features would make upgrading for you worth it at this time. I do like the spell checking as I type such as while writing this.

    I have upgraded my 2009 MBP to Lion and have no real problems with it though I just use it for internet and iTunes.

    On my 2008 black MB, I tried Lion and while I really didn't have any problems either, I decided to go back to SL simply because of Front Row. The gestures and Air Drop don't work on this computer so going back was really not that big if a deal. I didn't have a Time Machine backup to go back on so I used the TM backup from my MBP and restored it 100% with no problems and YES, the MBP backup restored onto the MB. It was originally from a 2008 Mac Pro which restored onto the MBP with no problems.

    I would say go ahead and try Lion and as long as you have a good backup, you can always go back to SL without a problem.
     
  9. wrx thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 5, 2011
    #9
    I'm not worried if I would benefit from/like the new features, I have worked plenty with Lion.
    My main condern is the over all performance, will/can my iMac tame the Lion ;) ?
     
  10. hexonxonx macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2007
    Location:
    Denver Colorado
    #10
    Yes it will handle it just as well as SL. My black MB has the same exact specs as your iMac and it ran it as if it came with it installed. 4GB ram is fine and everything will be nice and smooth.
     
  11. AppliedMicro macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2008
    #11
    He or she could just get a Magic Trackpad.
     
  12. roadbloc macrumors G3

    roadbloc

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    Aug 24, 2009
    Location:
    UK
    #12
    Take my advice and save your £20. You're not missing anything amazing with Lion.
     
  13. Skyhigh223 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2009
    #13
    To the OP.

    You have the same computer and specs as me! - except I have the 2.8Ghz model.

    Startup and Shutdown in Lion take longer than in SL.
    Otherwise, I noticed no performance differences between SL and Lion. Lion could actually be slightly faster.

    Unlike from Leopard to Snow Leopard, stability in Lion is perfect. I've had no trouble with incompatible apps, and I think the only trouble you're likely to encounter with compatibility is with PPC apps.

    Spaces, Mission Control, Dashboard and Full Screen apps really have changed the way I use my mac for the better. I love them. If you don't have one already, get a magic mouse as soon as you get Lion.

    I ran XP in a VM a few days ago on Lion, and it seemed to work just fine.
    I don't know about BootCamp.

    My Advice: Upgrade to Lion.
     
  14. wrx thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 5, 2011
    #14
    The 0.4GHz shouldn't make too much of a difference...
    I only reboot/shut down when necessary so that won't bother me either ;)



    So all your Apps and programs run just as before?
    That was quite an issue for me with the change from Leopard to Snow Leopard, about 25-30% of my Apps needed new versions (which weren't available right away :mad: )


    As I do a lot with photos I would really like the full screen apps, especially in aperture (as soon as supported...)
    I do how ever think that that the Magic Trackpad is the better option, as the Magic Mouse does not support all gestures. Besides, I'm not giving my lovely Logitech mouse away unless I have to - it's an old MX310 but I love it :)


    Thanks a lot for your input, it was very helpfull :):):)
     
  15. taylor200588 macrumors regular

    taylor200588

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2007
    Location:
    Arbroath, Scotland
    #15
    Stick with Snow Leopard for the moment until Apple bring out some decent upgrades for Lion. Im running Lion on a 2010 MBP 2.4ghz 4GB ram and the OS is slow, buggy and keeps crashing!!! worse OSX ever!!
     
  16. jbg232 macrumors 65816

    jbg232

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2007
    #16
    I have a Macbook with similar specs, so far lion has worked perfectly for me and was a much easier and hassle free upgrade than SL.

    My Advice: the big program that is different from SL-> Lion is mail. If you use apple mail then the Lion upgrade now is well worth it. If not, there are not that many things that are "urgent"
     
  17. wrx thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 5, 2011
    #17
    Hmm, funny - that's the one thing I hadn't concidered yet. Now that you brought it to my attention, and yes I do use Apple Mail, that would be a nice improvement :)

    Thank You!

    ----------

    Would you care to share some more details?
     
  18. talmy macrumors 601

    talmy

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2009
    Location:
    Oregon
    #18
    Full screen Aperture is already supported in Snow Leopard, and it's much better there since there is no time-wasting animation going into and out of full screen mode like there is in Lion. Use the "F" key to get full-screen.
     
  19. wrx thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 5, 2011
    #19
    "F" only shows the marked picture full screen, but not the entire app ;)
     
  20. Fishrrman macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #20
    My suggestion is that regardless of what others post in this thread, the only way that YOU are going to know if the upgrade will work for YOU -- is to try it.

    But -- try it in a way that "lets you go back" if you find that you're unhappy.

    To do that, I suggest you consider buying another external hard drive (they're relatively cheap nowadays), and do a completely "clean install" of Lion onto that drive, so that Lion doesn't "touch" the installation you currently have running and consider to be "your main drive".

    Or, I'd suggest this alternative (and one that I consider "better than" an "external" drive):
    Get one of these:
    http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias=aps&field-keywords=usb+sata+dock&x=0&y=0
    (many items shown, they all work the same, just pick a cheap one at it will be fine)

    ....and then add a "bare" hard drive from the vendor of your choice.

    Connect it, initialize it with Disk Utility, and do a "clean install" of Lion onto the "docked drive". You can reboot from it just as you would an external drive.

    When Lion asks if you wish to import data from another drive, select your _current_ (Snow Leopard) drive, and you will end up with a "Lion version" of your internal, but running on the docked drive. It will be completely "separate" from your current setup, and you can boot from either one.

    This way, you can experiment with Lion WITHOUT "committing yourself to it". If it doesn't satisfy you, just disconnect the drive from the dock and set it aside for now. You could even erase it if you wish and use it as a backup drive.

    Time and time and time again, we see posts here from people saying "I tried Lion, don't like it, and want to go back to Snow Leopard". That's a job.

    Do it my way above, and "going back" will be as easy as a simple reboot.
     
  21. wrx thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 5, 2011
    #21
    The only problem with this otherwise good idea is, that this way I cannot see if I will have any performance issues because any harddrive connected via USB will be considerably slower than the built-in SATA hardrive.
     
  22. talmy macrumors 601

    talmy

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2009
    Location:
    Oregon
    #22
    Not my experience! "V" changes between viewer mode and browser mode, but "F" enters full screen mode with a complete change in GUI. The same "F" key enters Lion Full Screen mode (a separate space) with the latest Aperture 3 revision. This suffers from slow animation effects that makes the F key take several times longer to go into and out of full screen mode.

    Here's a video I made showing the difference:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=955aoEHKKQ4&feature=player_detailpage
     
  23. wrx thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2011
    #23
    Thanks for the video!
    That's not really what I would concider "full screen" - that's basicaly just fine for viewing. In that mode I cannot use the adjustment panel which for me is the essence of aperture...
     
  24. talmy macrumors 601

    talmy

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2009
    Location:
    Oregon
    #24
    Yes you can. Press "H" to bring up the inspector HUD which has the adjustment panel. You can position it anywhere.
     
  25. wrx thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 5, 2011
    #25
    Now that's more like it :cool:
    Thanks :):):)
     

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