What's Next Power Users? Linux or Hackintosh?

Discussion in 'Alternatives to Mac Hardware' started by jblagden, Feb 17, 2017.

?

What will your Next Computer Be?

  1. Linux Desktop or Laptop

    20.0%
  2. Hackintosh

    28.2%
  3. I'll Go Back to Windows for the hardware & software selection

    34.1%
  4. Stay With Mac

    40.0%
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. jblagden, Feb 17, 2017
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2017

    jblagden macrumors 65816

    jblagden

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2013
    #1
    As it's really looking like Apple will never go back to making upgradable computers again, I guess many of us will have to move away from the Mac.

    The question is: Where do we go from here?

    On one hand, I really don't want to go back to Windows, and especially Windows 10. I'm sure I'm not alone in this.

    On the other hand, Linux is great because it allows you to have a hardware selection (not to mention pricing) that's closer to that Windows than Hackintoshes, it's Unix-based (great for Terminal users), it has some nice programs, and it can even be made to look remarkably like OS X. With Linux, you can get the power you want for things like media transcoding and gaming - though I realize Linux doesn't have nearly as many games as OS X. But there's a lot of mainstream software that you can't get on Linux. You also can't watch iTunes videos without stripping the DRM, which is not something you're going to want to put an old Mac through. There's also the potential legal issue - technically Hackintoshes are illegal, but Apple doesn't care, especially since it doesn't really make upgradable Macs anymore, so I guess they realize that they're not catering to everybody and Hackintoshes make it possible for people to keep using OS X, which I guess Apple sees as a plus as it could keep people using real Apple products like peripherals and iPhones, and it could even keep them buying some Macs, like maybe a Mac Mini to keep in the garage or a MacBook Air or two for their kids.

    But then you have Hackintoshes. The advantage of Hackintoshes is that they allow you to have OS X and its vast selection of mainstream software, while also being more upgradable than a modern Mac. But they can be a pain to set up - especially on laptops - and I keep reading comments about Hackintoshes requiring a lot of maintenance - though I don't have a Hackintosh, so don't really know for sure whether or not Hackintoshes require a lot of maintenance.

    I have no idea what I'll do when I need a new computer. I'll just have to hope my trusty 2011 13" MacBook Pro will last me long enough to decide what my next computer should be and which OS it should run.
     
  2. belvdr macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2005
    #2
    The Hackintosh is a pain in the neck especially during patching, not to mention it's not legal to do so.

    Windows 10 is fine and Linux is coming around. It really depends on the workload.

    I don't know what you mean by this (emphasis mine).
     
  3. jblagden thread starter macrumors 65816

    jblagden

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2013
    #3
    I'm considering Linux, I just don't know if I'd miss any mainstream software. And there's also the issue of iTunes. Sure, I could remove the DRM with something like Tune4Mac, but I'm not sure if I want to put my MacBook through the work of stripping DRM from over 400 gigabytes of videos.

    There's also the issue of troubleshooting. Linux is a niche OS, so if you have a problem, there might not be a published solution for it, and you probably won't be able to use your Linux knowledge to help people at work unless you somehow work for a company that actually uses Linux on the desktop. Admittedly, Mac OS X doesn't exactly help you in that regard since Windows has 80% of the "desktop OS share" and probably more like 99.9% of the enterprise "desktop OS share". Though, OS X has many apps that you might use on Windows, like Microsoft Office, Cisco WebEx, Adobe Creative Suite/Cloud and a modern version of Skype.

    But I really don't want to go back to Windows, with its many backdoors, plethora of malware, and the malware inherent in Windows 10.

    I'd like to make a Hackintosh, but I'm afraid it might not be worth the work.

    But for all I know, Linux could one day eclipse OS X, at least if it becomes easier to use. Not to mention, if you work with servers (or, Linux knowledge is very useful, though for that you'll want to use something Like Fedora or OpenSUSE. And I guess Linux's current stage of user-friendliness isn't too bad right now if you're a techie.
     
  4. Theophany macrumors 6502a

    Theophany

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2008
    Location:
    NW London.
    #4
    This comment is bizarre. I've been using Windows 10 on and off since beta and never had any issues with viruses, malware or anything. None of these things are 'inherent' to Windows, it's actually a pretty solid OS. Viruses and malware are inherent to stupid people who compulsively click every hyperlink they see and run every .exe they download.
     
  5. Fancuku macrumors 6502a

    Fancuku

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2015
    Location:
    PA, USA
    #5
    Completely agree. An OS is as safe as the nut behind the keyboard.

    And I want to add that Linux is not ready for the desktop. Far too many problems (video card support is a nightmare) with all of the distros that I have tried.
     
  6. jblagden thread starter macrumors 65816

    jblagden

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2013
    #6
    By inherent, I meant built-in. By default, Windows 10 sends a lot of information to the "home office". https://answers.microsoft.com/en-us...-malware/d8683bfb-2fef-4fc4-90e8-7656976b387d

    Sure, you can disable a lot of things, but that's not something everyone will know to do. And even if you flip all those switches, there still could be some stuff that just can't be turned off.
     
  7. Theophany macrumors 6502a

    Theophany

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2008
    Location:
    NW London.
    #7
  8. leman macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2008
    #8
    Scuse me, but I take personal offence in this poll ;) I consider myself every bit a power user, and I am very happy with the direction Apple is moving towards. Maybe add an option along the lines of "Staying with OS X" to get a more representative picture?
     
  9. jblagden, Feb 17, 2017
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2017

    jblagden thread starter macrumors 65816

    jblagden

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2013
    #9
    Good point. I just added that in after reading your comment. I'm sure there are power users (i.e. Marco Arment) who are perfectly happy about Apple's hardware direction. I just don't like the idea of a computer that has to be thrown away as soon as you need something a little better instead of being able to upgrade its components (i.e. RAM & CPU). Yes, I realize the 27" iMac has user-upgradable RAM and CPU, but only the 27" has that, and there's a pretty big price difference between the 21.5" and 27" iMacs. Not to mention, the iMac isn't exactly easy to repair. Another big issue for me is the GPU. For starters, the GPU is soldered to the board. Second, it's an AMD GPU. I'd really prefer an Nvidia GPU because Nvidia's GPUs are better for games, especially on OS X and Linux. I guess if the iMac had the option of an Nvidia GPU, I might not mind it so much. If Apple had an Nvidia option, I might actually be willing to buy an iMac and then sell it every three years and buy a new one. I don't care for the soldered-in storage, but that's not so bad with a desktop since you can always plug in an external hard drive or set up a NAS.
     
  10. jasnw macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2013
    Location:
    Seattle Area (NOT! Microsoft)
    #10
    While I don't want to vote "stay with Mac" that's my defacto position for now. Windows is out, Hackintosh is more time/hassle than I want to spend, ditto with Linux. Also, I just spent a week putting Linux on a PC box (CentOS 7 with Gnome 3) which reminded me how much I dislike the Linux desktop. My plan had been to use NoMachine to log into the Gnome desktop on the PC from my iMac, but after two days of wrestling with Gnome I bailed and fell back to booting into the CLI and accessing using Terminal and ssh. So, while I'm increasingly unhappy with macOS and Apple's hardware decisions, the OS alternatives are depressingly worse.

    And yes, I do know there are LOTS of different desktops available on Linux. Anyone looking at the Linux alternatives found a good desktop?
     
  11. jblagden thread starter macrumors 65816

    jblagden

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2013
    #11
    I'm a big fan of Gnome 3. Unity is alright, but I don't care for it, though Your Mileage May Vary. I've heard XFCE is pretty good. This is one of the interesting things about Linux - the plethora of desktop environments. One of the advantages of OS X and Windows is that very thing - the desktop environment. They ship with only one desktop environment per OS revision. Linux has a lot of desktop environments, which is one of the hard parts of getting started with Linux. Another tough part is choosing a distribution. There are hundreds of distributions. I picked Ubuntu Gnome, and I see you picked CentOS. CentOS is a good spot if you're in IT since it's commonly used on servers and it's related to RHEL, which is also used on servers. Fedora is also related to Red Hat, though the commands might be a bit different. But that's another thing that could be better about Linux - there's a good amount of stuff that can only be done in the CLI. I've actually created a list of potential Linux improvements.
    --- Post Merged, Feb 17, 2017 ---
    Whoops. I meant to say Hackintoshes there. Thanks for catching that. I'll go fix it.
     
  12. belvdr macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2005
    #12
    The phone-home items in Win10 are not malware.

    If you're concerned about finding support for Linux, you'd find worse support in a Hackintosh. I think Linux, specifically Ubuntu, is fine for most end users. My wife picked up my personal laptop running Ubuntu 16.10 and used it without any issue, and she doesn't have a clue about anything technical.

    But this is all subjective. I find Linux more than adequate for my needs.
     
  13. Lihp8270 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2016
    #13
    What would you call software that uses your internet connection to seed updates to others without permission?
     
  14. belvdr macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2005
    #14
    That's a setting, not malware. Under that definition, a BitTorrent client is malware too.

    From Merriam Webster's dictionary:

     
  15. T'hain Esh Kelch macrumors 601

    T'hain Esh Kelch

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2001
    Location:
    Denmark
    #15
    I am either going with a Hackintosh, or stay with a Mac. Depends on what Apple can present the coming years time. But it has to be a big improvement over what they have now.
     
  16. belvdr macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2005
    #16
    As I stated before, that's worse than running Linux. Good luck!
     
  17. Lihp8270 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2016
    #17
    It's a setting that is defaulted to seed. It doesn't tell you it's using your data connections, nor does it ask your permission to do so.
     
  18. MacUser2525, Feb 17, 2017
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2017

    MacUser2525 macrumors 68000

    MacUser2525

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2007
    Location:
    Canada
    #18
    Perhaps for the fools who think they can grab the latest and greatest hardware with no research done as to the compatibility. Other than that properly done nothing at all to it here is the list of .kext I need to use with the Clover bootloader.

    Code:
    MacUser2525:~$ ll /Volumes/EFI/EFI/CLOVER/kexts/10.11/
    total 9
    drwxrwxrwx  1 MacUser2525  staff   512B 12 Sep 01:35 FakePCIID.kext/
    drwxrwxrwx  1 MacUser2525  staff   512B 12 Sep 21:53 FakePCIID_XHCIMux.kext/
    drwxrwxrwx  1 MacUser2525  staff   512B 12 Sep 01:35 FakeSMC.kext/
    drwxrwxrwx  1 MacUser2525  staff   512B 12 Sep 01:35 FakeSMC_CPUSensors.kext/
    drwxrwxrwx  1 MacUser2525  staff   512B 12 Sep 01:35 FakeSMC_GPUSensors.kext/
    drwxrwxrwx  1 MacUser2525  staff   512B 12 Sep 01:35 FakeSMC_LPCSensors.kext/
    drwxrwxrwx  1 MacUser2525  staff   512B 23 Sep 12:27 IntelMausiEthernet.kext/
    drwxrwxrwx  1 MacUser2525  staff   512B  1 Feb  2016 Marvel-Injector.kext/
    drwxrwxrwx@ 1 MacUser2525  staff   512B 19 Aug  2016 VoodooHDA.kext/
    
    The only real mission critical are the FakeSMC to trick the machine into thinking I have a real Mac and the FakePCIID ones to have the usb3 ports properly recognized. And I guess the IntelMausi for my NIC but I can always put in the Sonnet Mac native card I have laying around that will work out of the box for that if I wanted. The VoodooHDA for the sound is not really needed as I have firewire card from Sonnet that works with my Griffin FireWave for surround sound and the Marvel-Injector is a cosmetic fix for the SATA ports on my motherboard so they do not show up as unknown in System Profiler and the sensors are just for display of my temps and voltages not entirely needed either.

    Code:
    MacUser2525:~$ ll Sites/
    total 16
    -rw-r--r--  1 MacUser2525  admin   1.1K 22 Jan  2011 favicon.ico
    drwxr-xr-x  6 MacUser2525  admin   204B  7 Feb  2008 images/
    -rw-r--r--@ 1 MacUser2525  admin   2.9K 22 Jan  2011 index.html
    drwxr-xr-x  2 MacUser2525  admin    68B 18 Jan  2011 test/
    
    As you can see from the Sites/images directory it has been just over nine years since I did what was called back then a retail install of a hackintosh Leopard version of OSX. In that time I have been through numerous hard drives for my various OSs of OSX I have ran and starting with a P35 then onto various P45 and finally now a z87 chipset on the numerous motherboards by Gigabyte I have had in that time. Linux I used that as my main desktop from 1999 to late 2007 when I did my first as they were called then distro install of Leopard by Kalyway onto the p35 I had at that time. Now I have got to tell you that OSX has been easier than any Linux install I ever did in the previous eight years of using it. OSX is just like the Energizer Bunny it just keeps going and going do your research and pick your hardware properly and you will have no problems. I am still on the same install I first did with the Leopard retail disk I bought it takes everything I can throw at it and just keeps going the only kernel panics I have ever had are due to bad overclock settings or stupidly trying out .kext I had no business messing with in the first place. In short this hackintosh is hard is just plain BS.

    Edit: Oh I use dsdt.aml that renames some devices in the Mac way that is loaded as well, probably can be done with the Clover patching for the same idea if I ever wanted to dig further into that but I never mess with working setup years of linux use taught me that one.
     
  19. craig1024 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2016
    #19
    For my next computer I am thinking about building a PC and running Ubuntu & windows 10 in multiboot. I would mostly use ubuntu.
     
  20. belvdr macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2005
    #20
    Correct, it's a setting that can be changed easily. I believe many BitTorrent clients default to seed as well. It still doesn't match with the definition of malware.

    I think I was using iatkos (sp?) but every time a patch was released, it conflicted. It's quite possible I was not doing it correctly, as I just threw it on a machine to try it out. Once I found out it was not legal, I removed it. I lost interest many years ago in researching HCLs when I moved away from building machines.

    I don't appreciate being called a fool, though.
     
  21. MacUser2525 macrumors 68000

    MacUser2525

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2007
    Location:
    Canada
    #21
    I was talking fools in general not particularly you those being people who do not do even the merest bit of research thinking I got to have the latest and greatest and it should just work damn it. The iatkos would be what is/was called a distro all kinds of changes made to the underlying OS with the person doing the install having no clue what they were. The best method of getting it done is the retail method where you the person doing it has taken the time to see what is involved doing it and making the changes needed yourself so if it ever breaks you know what was done to get it going in the first place so you can at least get back to that starting point.
     
  22. flyinmac macrumors 68030

    flyinmac

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2006
    Location:
    United States
    #22
    It's not like iOS and MacOS don't send information home to Apple. If anything, Apple pulls as much or more of your information.

    Think about how Siri works. It's easy to disable info going to Microsoft. Couple clicks and done.

    Apple is really no better than Microsoft in regards to data flowing in Apple's data centers. Apple has a much clearer picture of you than you realize.
     
  23. Plato65 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2017
    #23
  24. ssgbryan macrumors 6502a

    ssgbryan

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2002
    #24
    I'll move to windows. I have jumped platforms before. I'll have 1 piece of software to replace (Zbrush), but the rest of my production workflow is available on both platforms.

    Linux isn't (nor will it ever be) an option for me. After 20+ years, it still isn't ready for prime time.
     
  25. Mikael H macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2014
    #25
    How nice it is to be OS agnostic.
    My server environment at work is mostly Windows with a few workloads on Linux and a couple on BSD derivatives.
    My home server environment is mostly Linux, with some FreeBSD.
    My gaming computer+test environment at home runs Linux (I don't play anything that's not in the Steam or GoG Linux catalogs, or is 100% playable through Wine or ScummVM).
    For my laptop needs, Apple has me completely covered. I still haven't found an actual use case where my fully specced late 2013 MBPr was the limiting factor. I would definitely not rather be lugging a mobile Xeon workstation around at all times for those once-in-a-blue-moon occasions where it could be cool to run more than a few VMs (or very heavily specced VMs) on the laptop instead of in the data center.
     

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