Linked by David Adams on Mon 25th May 2009 21:22 UTC
OSNews, Generic OSes Over the years, we've occasionally run an "Ask OSNews" feature, wherein a reader asks us a question and we answer it publicly. Lately I've really been enjoying Slate's Dear Prudence advice column and the ever-interesting Straight Dope, and I thought we should see if we can get more OSNews readers to submit questions, and turn Ask OSNews into a more-regular thing. If your question falls outside of our domain expertise, we'll try to track down an expert to help out. And of course, our responses will always be supplemented by further advice from OSNews readers in the comments. Questions are welcome on any topic ranging from OSes and computing to science and geek culture. Contact us with your questions. (Please include "Ask OSNews" in the subject). Today's question is from a young student in Hungary who's seduced by the faraway siren song of Apple's marketing and wonders, "should I switch?"
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RE: Consumer Prioritized
by Shane on Tue 26th May 2009 04:02 UTC in reply to "Consumer Prioritized"
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First, surprisingly you never want to start with the operating system. Start with what hardware you would like to use. Personally, I always prioritize to reliability: if a computer doesn't work it doesn't matter what software is installed. I have used Panasonic since 2000 and have been more than ecstatic: customer service is great, warranties are three years, and systems are physically durable and easy to repair. They are the most costly (up-front) computers available but you can easily have them indefinitely. Other reliable brands are Samsung, Fujitsu, and Itronix.

I disagree. Hardware by itself is not useful, plus there are a lot to choose from. Software is what makes a computer tick, and this is where I start. If I want to run a LAMP server, I need make sure that the hardware will be compatible with Linux. If I want to use TextMate, I need OS X. If I want to play Crysis, I need Windows.

Start with what you want to do, figure out what software will allow you to do that, find out the OSes that the software will run on, and then you look at the hardware options.

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