Vista or XP, First Mac, Future Law Student...

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Cyroceon, Feb 22, 2008.

  1. Cyroceon macrumors 6502a

    Cyroceon

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    #1
    I am going to get my MacBook tomorrow and I will be buying a Windows OS. I know both XP and Vista, but I have to choose between the two. Also, keep in mind that I will be going to law school in a year and I need something that can run all the law school testing programs, etc... Should I go with Vista since SP1 is on the horizon, or go with the tried and true XP? There is only a $20 difference on Newegg for OEM versions, so all of your opinions will be very important to me in making my decision.

    BTW, I will be going with Vista Home Basic if I get Vista, not Home Premium.
     
  2. Jopling macrumors 6502

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    Jul 14, 2004
  3. kch macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2007
    #3
    as a 1L, i can tell you that i've never once needed windows for anything. Any software you need to use should come in an OSX flavor.

    also, see if your school has a deal with MS for software licenses. don't buy the full-price versions. I just got vista ultimate and office 08 for mac from our computer store for $20.
     
  4. Cyroceon thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Cyroceon

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    #4
    I will be using OS X 98% of the time. The ONLY reasons I'm getting XP or Vista is to use them if/when I HAVE to run a program, like a law school testing program, in Windows. I have all the software I need for OS X, so Windows is just a "in case" thing to have.

    I can't get it from school, but whatever edition I am getting, I will be getting the OEM version, which is only around $100.
     
  5. mrbrown macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2004
    Location:
    Ozark, Missouri
    #5
    Before you shell out money for Windows, try to find out what testing software your law school uses. Mine, for example, uses Exam4 which has a Mac edition. I believe only one law school testing program is Windows only (there are three of them).

    If you have to buy Windows, get XP. Most of the testing programs do not run or are not supported on Vista at this time.
     
  6. hodgjy macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2005
    #6
    Are you going to be using it in bootcamp or through virtualization? If Bootcamp, I'd probably go with Vista. If virtualization, I would go with XP because it's less taxing on system resources.

    I generally like XP much more than Vista, but I don't demand a whole lot from my Windows environments. Vista has more of a future potential, whereas XP is starting to fade off into the sunset.
     
  7. Cyroceon thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Cyroceon

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    #7
    But in general, I will need a backup Windows for the MacBook, just in case. I will barely ever use it, but I want to have it. Maybe in a few years, with Mac going more and more mainstream, I won't need Windows anymore. However, until then, I am going to go with one version of Windows.

    I will install it on Boot Camp and virtualize it using VMWare Fusion. By the way, if I get Vista it will be Home Basic, not Premium.
     
  8. Techguy172 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2007
    Location:
    Ontario Canada
    #8
    Vista is stable as long as you didn't upgrade to it so you should be ok My brother did a clean install because he was having issues and now it works really well for him.
     
  9. phairphan macrumors 6502

    phairphan

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2005
    Location:
    Reject Beach
    #9
    The answer to your question will depend in large part on which law school you end up attending. For day-to-day tasks, OS X will be fine at most schools. The situation becomes muddied when you talk about exams. Most law schools offer computer-based exams and they use a wide variety of exam software. Whether you can use OS X, XP, or Vista will depend on the software and which features and compatibility options each school has utilized. Given how slowly our law school IT department adopts new technology (and academic IT departments in general), XP may be your safest bet.

    Mac Law Students (www.maclawstudents.com) is a good primer on using Macs in law school. In particular, you may want to check out the exam software section: www.maclawstudents.com/blog/law-school-exam-software/
     
  10. hodgjy macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2005
    #10
    Well, if you're going to do bootcamp with linking to virtualization, as much as I like XP over Vista, I still recommend you get Vista. It has more of a future and Microsoft will eventually squash many of the bugs and annoyances. Remember this same type of debate when XP was starting to displace Win2000? Same applies here.
     
  11. Cyroceon thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Cyroceon

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    #11
    I have checked that out, and I found that at most, if not all, law schools an Intel Mac will NOT have any problems with Vista or XP installed.
     
  12. heatmiser macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2007
    #12
    People will still be using XP 3 years from now; many companies often stay one OS behind a release to ensure stability and compatibility. Get XP if you can, Vista if you can't.
     
  13. dt1027 macrumors newbie

    dt1027

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2008
    Location:
    Raleigh, NC
    #13
    having just graduated from law school i'd go with XP, its easiest/stablest and just works better.

    In terms of Exam software, contact your school, I know at some schools, Macs aren't allowed (even using Boot Camp and XP) and even now on the NC Bar, you can't use a Mac, should change one of these days but I know schools are still resisting.
     
  14. Cyroceon thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Cyroceon

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    Feb 9, 2008
    #14
    Thank you all for your replies. I aggregated the information and I came up with a decision to go with Vista Home Basic. I think that future stability, compatibility and overall longevity would be best ensured with Microsoft's flagship operating system.
     
  15. cohibadad macrumors 6502a

    cohibadad

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2007
    #15
    Easy answer. Unless there is something specifically you need Vista for (which from your description would be no), choose XP. You will have far fewer compatibility problems. And unless you need 3D speed (ie games), virtualize it with Parallels or VMWare. This question is really a no-brainer.
     
  16. Cyroceon thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Cyroceon

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    #16
    This is what the FAQ at Examsoft's website, which was pointed to from North Carolina Bar Association's website, says:

    I'm going to do exactly what your saying, but with Vista Basic.
     
  17. amac4me macrumors 65816

    amac4me

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2005
    #17
    Mac OS X arguments aside, go with XP. It's stable, more reliable, and will have less compatibility issues with 3rd-party software.

    BTW ... congrats on the decision to buy a Mac. You'll be a switcher soon enough :D
     
  18. cohibadad macrumors 6502a

    cohibadad

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2007
    #18
    LOL. I had to reread everyones comments about 3 times to see how you aggregated them and came up with Vista. You were made for Law School!
     
  19. Hankster macrumors 68020

    Hankster

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    Jan 30, 2008
    Location:
    Washington DC
    #19
    Install XP, it's more stable than Vista and requires less resources.
     
  20. andpeo23 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2008
    #20
    here's an idea...check with the it dept at your school, some schools offer free or heavily discounted software for their students. just a thought.
     
  21. Cyroceon thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Cyroceon

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    Feb 9, 2008
    #21
    Ok, you guys convinced me. I will be getting Windows XP Home SP2 OEM version. Thanks alot.
     
  22. LiquidSpikes macrumors regular

    LiquidSpikes

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2007
    Location:
    Everett, WA
    #22
    XP is teh epic

    I used Vista for about 6 months on my Macbook Pro....

    then it ate my partition after some updates...bit locker is crap.

    I then had to format and reinstalled vista.

    then I got the reboot loop of death with vista SP1

    http://www.itbusinessedge.com/blogs/hdw/?p=1701

    Vista SP1 isnt going to make things much better... just keep with XP trust me... I wish I did

    http://www.computerworld.com/action...articleId=9064239&taxonomyId=11&intsrc=kc_top

    and with the release of Windows only 3 years out I am going to try to buy a copy of XP soon so I can skip the rest of vistas glitches.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_7
    http://www.news.com/2100-1016_3-6197943.html
     
  23. QCassidy352 macrumors G3

    QCassidy352

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2003
    Location:
    Bay Area
    #23
    go to a law school (like mine!) that doesn't use that crap exam software! OS X all the way! :D
     
  24. stainlessliquid macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2006
    #24
    Youll be happier with Vista. It has a more pleasant UI which really counts for something. It being more unstable is ridiculous, both are very stable.

    It would be nice if people would actually cite useful programs that arent "compatible" with Vista since it sounds an awful lot like FUD to me. I have been using vista since Beta 2 came out and have never seen a single incompatible program. You couldnt pay me to go back to XP.
     
  25. Cyroceon thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Cyroceon

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    #25
    Yea, but they, and a few others I've spoken to have good points. XP will be around for a long time, and it is probably my best option. I already bought XP on Newegg just a few minutes ago.
     

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