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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Think different, but wisely
by chocobanana on Tue 26th May 2009 09:28 UTC
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What everybody said about pricing is true. You get what you pay for but it's also stupidly expensive in Europe compared to the US - Make sure your budget allows whatever you decide to buy

What some said about applications is also true. You mention you only need it for basic chores but remember you're young and you probably are going to University - Make sure that you choose the OS that better supports your current and future app needs.

Security is a problem on any OS and Macs or Linux aren't much better than Windows. Windows only has the addition of virus and a larger more attractive user base to exploit - Make sure you follow a security guide to harden the OS of you choice.

Interface is a matter of preference and/or experience and/or ease to learn new things. If you have experience with all those OSs, then it shouldn't be a problem to understand and get used to Mac OS - Make sure you give yourself the time to learn and understand the differences. I'm sure you won't have a problem.

Try before you buy, buy second hand and ask about refund policies. In many countries it is mandatory to provide an 8 day money back, no questions asked refund - These are the best ways to guarantee that your money isn't gonna be wasted (too much, at least)

And remember that Macs give you the chance to install any of the 3 big OS families. If you don't like Mac OS, install Windows or Linux. Heck!, you can even have the three of them.

The two things I don't like on Windows are: pain to maintain (updates, defrag, etc.) and there too many things too look after (notifications, configuration options). Mac OS and Linux, after the initial modest configuration, they're a breeze to live with, just accept updates and off you go.

My personal choice? Mac OS or Linux. I don't which. The problem with Linux is that there are some apps that I need that don't work on it. The problem with the Mac? It's made by one of the most secretive vendors out there.

Right now I'm typing from a 4yr old HP laptop running Ubuntu 9.04. I use it for all sorts of things, including 3D rendering and very occasional gaming. I'm still happy with it. When quad core Apple MacBooks arrive, then I'll buy one. In the meanwhile, because I'm european, I'll be saving money and try to abstain from beer ;)

Oh, and also remember - if you live in Hungary, chances are that a Mac is more attractive for thiefs and thugs than a PC...

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