Switching to Mac after 15 years of Windows, security expert ...


shamino

macrumors 68040
Jan 7, 2004
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He makes a lot of key points. Most prominently is that you have to go through a lot of unlearning in order to switch from Windows to Mac OS.

GUI issues (like close-boxes on the left-side instead of the right side of the title bar) are almost nothing compared to the big ones, like the (often correct) assumption that all problems are due to OS bugs and not your own oversight. Or that you will be attacked and "pwned" in seconds without constant vigilence to keep the latest patches/scanners/firewalls running at all times. Or that new hardware won't work right without downloading and testing several different versions of device drivers first.

Fortunately, I used a lot of different OS's besides Windows (including DOS, Linux, Solaris, VMS, MVS, OS/2 and old versions of Mac OS) before getting my Mac, so I was already aware of the fact that Microsoft's problems are not indiciative of the way things have to be. But most people do not have this kind of experience.

Now, if only Apple could get their software updates to work without rebooting. On my Linux PC, I can upgrade everything except for the kernel and the boot-drive's kernel module without a reboot. I've successfully upgraded everything else, inclduing video drivers, SCSI drivers (for non-boot drives), network drivers, and all kinds of user- and server-apps, without any rebooting. Apple (and Microsoft, for that matter) should be capable of the same.
 

greatdevourer

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Aug 5, 2005
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shamino said:
Now, if only Apple could get their software updates to work without rebooting. On my Linux PC, I can upgrade everything except for the kernel and the boot-drive's kernel module without a reboot. I've successfully upgraded everything else, inclduing video drivers, SCSI drivers (for non-boot drives), network drivers, and all kinds of user- and server-apps, without any rebooting. Apple (and Microsoft, for that matter) should be capable of the same.
So true. Rebooting after upgrading is the sole major problem that Winblowz and X share. If only someone could write a dual-kernal mod for X (it duplicates the machine, and reboots one kernal in a VM while the other keeps the system alive, and then they swap over and the old one is killed off as soon as it's finished whatever tasks it was given)
 

shamino

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Jan 7, 2004
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greatdevourer said:
So true. Rebooting after upgrading is the sole major problem that Winblowz and X share. If only someone could write a dual-kernal mod for X (it duplicates the machine, and reboots one kernal in a VM while the other keeps the system alive, and then they swap over and the old one is killed off as soon as it's finished whatever tasks it was given)
And there's no reason Apple can't do this. OS X is based on a Mach-derived microkernel. It should be possible to repalce everything (except for the microkernel itself) without rebooting. But I'd be satisfied if they'd just do as well as Linux in this regard.
 

SPUY767

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Jun 22, 2003
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What I'm about to telll you, may be the death of Microsoft.

After careful examination of my Intel Developer Box, and some coercion of the operating system to ignore the pretty bits in the developer box, I have been able to make it work on about 15 vastly different hardware platforms without modification. Five different Dells, 3 Compaqs, 2 HPs, a Toshiba Laptop, and a few custom configurations, and it hasn't missed a beat. Granted, it runs better on some than others but it runs. This is more than I can say for any version of windows ever, which will instantly Crap itself with something as routine as a processor change. Let's recap, in 4-5 years of intel based development, Apple has made an OS which, at the very least, will boot different hardware configs without crying foul every 8 seconds.

God Bless America
 

SPUY767

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Jun 22, 2003
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shamino said:
And there's no reason Apple can't do this. OS X is based on a Mach-derived microkernel. It should be possible to repalce everything (except for the microkernel itself) without rebooting. But I'd be satisfied if they'd just do as well as Linux in this regard.

So what, you can keep you uptime clock running and try to break a record? When changes are made to the operating systems, or any applications that interface tightly with the Operating System, the system should be rebooted. The 45 seconds it takes my machine to reboot are not going to kink up my day all that bad; well, at least not as bad as some erratic behavior might. The state of linux right now, it pretty crappy despite the flames that I will have to endure for saying that. Sure, it's more stable tan windows, but if you haven't had at least some rudimentary college-level computer science classes, you're not going to be able to use it. And it's not nearly as stable as it's purported to be. I have written java scripts that have crashed linux, and they live in a sandbox. Linux has a way to go yet.
 

nagromme

macrumors G5
May 2, 2002
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What is the harm of rebooting for system updates? I couldn't care less if I have to restart once every few months or not.
 

shamino

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nagromme said:
What is the harm of rebooting for system updates? I couldn't care less if I have to restart once every few months or not.
If it was "once every few months", I wouldn't care. But it's far more often than that.

Why should a patch to a web browser force a reboot? Or any application installation/update?

As for "what's the harm", you obviously don't use your Mac in any server capacity. Mine acts as a DNS server (among other things) for my LAN. While it is rebooting, my other five computers effectively lose their internet access.

If I (or a family member) is doing something important, my reboot is going to impact their activities. This is not good.
 

mklos

macrumors 68000
Dec 4, 2002
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Well in a server environment, that would be extremely handy as a server can update itself on the fly without a tech or sys admin being anywhere near it and there would be no downtime at all as it wouldn't have to restart.

On the client end, it would be nice to be able to install all of the Mac OS X updates when you're re-doing your HD with a fresh install of OS X and not have to restart your computer after every system update. Thats a little annoying when its the end of an OS (ie. OS X.3.9) when there's a lot of OS updates, security updates, Java updates, QT updates, etc. All in which you have to restart after every update. Thats where no restarts would be handy. Other than that, I agree in saying I don't care if I don't have restart my PowerBook every once in a while. Its actually good to restart your computer every once in a while anyways.

Another thing I wish Apple would do it create a way to do an unattended installation of Mac OS X. This is extremely handy with Windows (NT based OS's only I believe) and would also be really handy in the Mac world.
 

shamino

macrumors 68040
Jan 7, 2004
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SPUY767 said:
So what, you can keep you uptime clock running and try to break a record?
Please don't begin your post with insults and abuse. You just make everybody ignore the rest of your message.

And why do you feel the need to get so defensive about this? Does your religion demand that my computer be periodically rebooted or something?
SPUY767 said:
When changes are made to the operating systems, or any applications that interface tightly with the Operating System, the system should be rebooted.
And it is a very bad design if any application interfaces that tightly with the OS. One of the problems with security and stability these days is that every two-bit application vendor wants to install system updates in order to fix a typo on a menubar.
SPUY767 said:
The 45 seconds it takes my machine to reboot are not going to kink up my day all that bad; well, at least not as bad as some erratic behavior might.
I've never had "erratic" behavior from upgrading applications on my Linux boxes.

And in a network environment, a reboot is not just a 45 second pause. It means a shutdown of all server applications, which can mean hosing other computers on the LAN.

It also means you have to stop whatever you're doing. If I'm in the middle of working on a project and the software update dialog pops up, I'd like to just "click OK" and get back to work and not have to worry about the fact that I'm going to have to quit the app, wait for a reboot, re-launch everything, and then hope I can resume my train of thought.
SPUY767 said:
The state of linux right now, it pretty crappy despite the flames that I will have to endure for saying that. Sure, it's more stable tan windows, but if you haven't had at least some rudimentary college-level computer science classes, you're not going to be able to use it.
This is a complete non-sequitor. The ability to perform hitless upgrades has absolutely nothing to do with the user interface.
SPUY767 said:
And it's not nearly as stable as it's purported to be. I have written java scripts that have crashed linux, and they live in a sandbox. Linux has a way to go yet.
Well, then you're just special. Or you're installing buggy pre-release kernels. I push my Linux boxes hard every single day, and they have never crashed, even once. My hard drives are exported via NFS, and are accessed by 3-5 Sun boxes for hours at a time. Meanwhile, I'm editing, compiling and testing code locally (hitting many servers all over my office LAN.) There are two or three other people here who also use this computer for their work. Although it slows down when memory gets overcommitted, it keeps on running.

Downtime for rebooting (which is a lot longer than 45 seconds) impacts many more people than just myself. And, with the exception of kernel updates, it isn't ever necessary.
 

OhEsTen

macrumors regular
Dec 29, 2003
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shamino said:
A woman who lost her husband to porn. The guy spends all of his time looking at dirty pictures and none with his wife.

Pretty pathetic, IMO.
Very insightful.
 

Applespider

macrumors G4
The 'start/restart' after Software Update probably deserves its own thread rather than veering this one OT.

So to take it back OT, I completely agree with having to refigure out the easy way to do things when you switch back from using Windows regularly.

I recall my sister asking me how to burn a music CD on her new eMac. I'd had my Mac a few months and hadn't done it yet but I had done it on my old PC (win98 admittedly) and I was trying to remember what I had to convert my MP3s to to make them play in a regular CD player etc etc. I was stunned when I realised how easy it was.

Similarly, I remember spending a few minutes trying to figure out how to save an image from a webpage when 'Save Image' wasn't under 'Ctrl Click'
Did I feel dim when I thought of just dragging it over :eek:
 

Nermal

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winmacguy said:
98% of ALL computer operating problems are located between the chair and the keyboard, the other 2% are in the system. :D
Swap those figures if you're running Windows :p
 

SiliconAddict

macrumors 603
Jun 19, 2003
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Chicago, IL
To be fair I've seen the "Share my Music" feature in iTunes get FUBARED before. Don't know what the deal was. I had to turn it off and back on, off and back on, on the client side and things started up again. Very odd.

*shrugs* The issue here is the fact that Apple's design mentality is completely, 180* different the Microsoft's and the software that "lives" on Windows. This simply WILL confuse users. Quite frankly iTunes, the first time I used it, was a little TOO simplistic for me. Examples of inconsistencies.

-I can drag artwork into the artwork display pane to add something but I can't drag it out to remove it, instead I have to go into the properties of the file.

-I always thought it kind of sucked that you couldn't display the song that was now playing. It was always "selected". It wasn't until I accidentally clicked on it while resizing the artwork window did I find that if you click that horizontal bar that you can indeed display the "Now playing" track. That isn't intuitive at all.

-You can hide party shuffle, radio, but not podcasts. Why?

There are a couple others but its late and I’m tired.

That being said I wouldn’t use anything else BECAUSE of that simplicity even though there are times I crave some of the features found in other Music Players. As an example. I like an all in one media player. The idea of not needing to jump from one app to another to deal with video and audio is rather nice and while I know iTunes can now do video it harvests and adds video and audio even if all you want to do is play it once which kinda sucks.

I saw the same behavior in several other iLife apps. Small things that are inconsistent with the design.

Apple's OS isn't much better. There are some things that Mac users take for granted and automatically assume that since they have been using this OS forever that it’s easy and intuitive. Some of Apple's designs are indeed intuitive but some are designed around someone's logic that didn't filter down to the common user, IMHO. Someone said THIS MAKES SENSE SO THIS IS HOW WE WILL DO IT. Or that is the impression I get. Could be wrong. *shrugs*

I think neither Apple nor MS has a perfect GUI or OS. Both system's get some things right. Both OS's get some things wrong. I personally think that when you count up the tally board Apple is ahead but some of the nagging things trip up Windows users because in Windows they throw all the options at you like someone being splattered with a paintball gun. Its ugly, its NOT elegant, and there are 10,000 ways of doing it. In Apple you have to play hide and go seek for things. Yes after a while you get the hang of it but that is the case for any OS be it OSX, Windows, Linux, BeOS, or Amiga. The big thing is the learning curve. Who’s is shorter? Apple, Windows, Linux, etc?

There is a happy medium in there somewhere. The problem is that I think Apple and MS are so dung into their GUI trenches that really jumpstarting a design revolution is going to be dang hard. I really wish someone would come out with a GUI theming engine that really could allow you to tweak the living crap out of an OS. I’m not talking just skins but literally the shell layout. MS has done a little work on this that stardock has picked up but no one really has taken the ball and run with the idea. Let the OS have a default look and feel but allow users to create something that may be. Just may be better then what Apple has made, or Microsoft, or Linux. Viva the GUI revolution! ;)
 

GodBless

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Jan 22, 2005
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:eek: Today I did the exact same thing that the article talked about AFTER I read the article. I guess it goes to show how imperfect we are as fallen humans.

Here's the whole story. I setup a new Gmail account and then opened the the Apple Mail application and typed in all the Gmail account information that mail needed for POP and SMTP features. Then I checked for mail in all of my email accounts (including my new gmail account) by pressing the "Get Mail" button in the Mail application. No matter how many times I reconfigured the settings in Mail and checking for mail, I kept getting this error in a dialogue box:

"...The POP server “pop.gmail.com” rejected the password for user..."

I must have reconfigured the settings and retyped in the password in mail for somewhere in-between 15 to 30 minutes before I remembered that I needed to turn on the feature on the gmail website. :rolleyes:

How silly I am. :D

Edit: I mean how silly the computer is for lying and telling me that I had the wrong password. I think Apple needs better programmers on their Mail application team. :mad: In this case I was not the problem, the computer was.
 

SiliconAddict

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Jun 19, 2003
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Chicago, IL
shamino said:
If it was "once every few months", I wouldn't care. But it's far more often than that.

Why should a patch to a web browser force a reboot? Or any application installation/update?
Just as an FYI the latest version of Windows Installer that came out about a month or two ago has DRASTICLY decreased the number of required reboots. The last 3 IE Updates (Even though the only reason I use IE anymore is for said updates.) has not required a reboot. They are getting closer to not needing to reboot at all. I fully expect that Vista will bring that down to almost nothing other then Service Packs. As for reboots. In my environment its doesn’t really matter. Out SMS server can power on every computer in the office, install whatever patches are necessary, and power off so by the time morning comes no one even knows that a patch has even been installed. we implimented this in early Spring. Works like a dream. God I love the wake on LAN feature. :D
 

Nermal

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GodBless said:
Edit: I mean how silly the computer is for lying and telling me that I had the wrong password. I think Apple needs better programmers on their Mail application team. :mad: In this case I was not the problem, the computer was.
It's not Apple's fault that Google is sending an "incorrect password" error. So blame Google. :p