The Windoze/Macintrash/Penguin Holy Wars

Here, a thread tailer made for you Windows haters. Explain to me what OS I (and presumably others) should switch to from Microsoft. The only ones that come to my mind are some form of Linux or Mac (which is now a form of Linux as well isn’t it?). I know there are Mac and Linux users that only use their Mac OS or Linux OS, but in “the real world”, isn’t it easier to have a Mac (or Linux box) and a Windows PC (or just a Windows PC)?

My real question is will I benefit from switching or will I just get to be someone who brags about how much better Linux/Mac is?

Why do you want to switch? Which Windows OS are you on? Is it legitimate?

It’s easy to bitch about Windows, but it’s still the easiest and most compatible OS. I’ve tried Linux; there is a BIG learning curve, and you’ll need to learn a lot of new applications if you’re used to MS stuff.

We have a new Apple iBook in the house, too, and we’ve had lots of system crashes with OSX. By contrast, I’ve never had a complete system crash with XP Pro, though I know others have. Apples involve a whole new way of interacting with your computer. If you really want to switch, don’t underestimate the learning involved. Probably the happiest switchers are the biggest MS haters.

I am the opposite - had Apple desktops and laptops at home - not one crash. My work PC crashes at least twice a week.

The debate over M$ v the rest is retarded. The transition to Mac OS is incredibly smooth. I personally just find Macs to suit my needs straight out of the box - no need for pop up protection, no need for virus protection, and never (for me ) crashes. Happy as Larry.

I don’t want to switch. Chinese XP Pro. Yes.

I just wanted a thread that I could point people to when Windows bashing starts messing up another thread. I also wanted a chance to bash the bashers if it arises. I’ve known one HARDCORE Linux (only used Linux) user and he never bashed Windows, he was just hardcore about using Linux. The other Linux users I’ve met usually had more then a couple of PC’s with various OS’s (Windows was always one of them).

I suppose if you’re used to using Macs, they don’t present a problem.

Otherwise, you’re in for a big paradigm shift, and the switch is no way near as smooth as Apple’s cute ads would have you believe. Miltownkid is happy with his XP; he should stay with it.

Here are 10 reasons NOT to switch to Mac!

It’s retarded to debate or you think the debate is over (with M$ losing)?

I think I would miss some of the freeware apps that are available on the PC, lots of games, minesweeper and things like that. Macs always sounded really cool, but seemed like they were a little more expensive. I wish I could get into an environment where I could use one for a while to see what it’s like. Windows hasn’t pissed me off enough to want to switch (especially with XP, I rarely have problems with it)

The debate itself is retarded. I see no problem with a discussion of the pros and cons of various OSes, but the content of the debate as it stands is just dumb. If it works for you, good on you; no need to get all preachy and shit like those holy wars usually end up doing.

Personally, I’m happy enough with XP for the time being. I’d like to change to Linux (specifically my HD install of Knoppix) as my primary, but it still lacks equivalents to a couple of the main apps I use for work. But to be honest, unless you like getting under the hood and geeking out, I see no big reason to install Linux at all. I just like it because it’s a fun toy to play around with, and it’s cheaper to update. :laughing:

As for OS X, it does look like a good option to me too. Certainly more draw than Linux. Only problem is that it requires much more investment to switch to OS X from Windows than it does to Linux. The whole “buying a brand new, more expensive computer” thing just for the sake of playing with a new OS seems like a waste of time and money. If there were a version - even crippled - available for PCs, even just for a test run before the full commitment, I’d be more keen.

Once I get around to it, though, I’m looking forward to playing around with Syllable OS to see what that’s like.

Tangentially - the Linux users I’ve known have generally been pretty anti-MS, but not to the point where they try and convert every Windows user they come across, except when a holy way breaks out. Mac users, on the other hand, have a much less stellar history with me. I’ve only known a handful, but only one wasn’t a Mac Zealot, ranting and raving at every opportunity about how much better Macs were than Windows. That’s probably done more to put me off getting a Mac than any practical reason.

It’s retarded to debate or you think the debate is over (with M$ losing)?

I think I would miss some of the freeware apps that are available on the PC, lots of games, minesweeper and things like that. Macs always sounded really cool, but seemed like they were a little more expensive. I wish I could get into an environment where I could use one for a while to see what it’s like. Windows hasn’t pissed me off enough to want to switch (especially with XP, I rarely have problems with it)[/quote]

For me - the switch was simple - and I only did the switch about 2.5 yrs ago in a full on way. I found the transition simple enough, hardly need to be Einstein to ‘cope’ with the switch.

I find the arguement retarded and those that participate in Mac or MS bashing as retarded. Who cares - each to their own. I (as in ME!) prefer Mac - it feels better and has given me many less headaches than the PC has. But that is just ME!

On the cost discussion - I read somewhere (and no I dont have the source) but Apple laptops beat Dell at most price points (when doing the rough comparisons on CPU’s etc between Mac and PC)… my powerbook was approx. NT$42,000 and when I tried to find similar PC based lappies (with bulit in wirless card, bluetooth, HDD space etc) the Mac was far cheaper and looks a lot nicer than a Dell lappie.

But I stress once again - these are MY choices based on MY experiences.

XP is quite alright and Linux is not as stable (referring to the GUI here) and safe as people want you to make you believe - it’s just less targeted for attacks and thus security problems that arise do not generate as much noise as those against Windows do.

I have installed both, WinXP (with SP2 now) for work and Linux for “playing” around.
Mandrake 9.1 is probably one of the easiest to install and use Linux distributions and it comes with lot’s of freebies, Open Office, many games etc.
However since installation I have downloaded at least 500MB of updates (bug fixes, security updates and optional ones).

I am an avid Linux/BSD user and I would say that I am pretty anti-MS as a corporation, but I am not totally anti-Windows. In my house I run OpenBSD 3.5, SuSe Linux, Linspire, Mandrake as well as Windows XP, both Professional and Home. I stick with XP on my gaming machine and my wife uses XP because she has several favorite programs only available for Windows. I have had problems with my XP installs but I have also had problems with my Linux installs.

There are pros and cons to all OSes, and the most fervent crusaders for or against any operating system are not really debating the OS, but the philosophy behind it, i.e. open vs. closed source systems, free-software vs. software patents, etc. No matter how good or bad an Operating System, the philosophical differences will remain.

Here is a great summation of the OS arguments:

You run Linspire? What’s it like? I’m just in the process of grabbing a Live CD copy via P2P at the moment (and yes it’s legal).

Linspire isn’t bad. I set it up on my kid’s computer. It was probably the easiest to install of all the Linux distros I have and the Click and Run feature is awesome for installing all the little games and educational programs they like. It seems to be a very good beginners Linux, the entire set-up to looks a lot like Windows. My 10-year old did most of the installation and network set-up by himself, but he is pretty computer savvy.

I do know that places like Wal-Mart are selling preloaded Linspire machines in the US and in time, something like it could give Windows a run for their money on low-end machines for people who want to check email, do word processing, play a few games, blah blah.

An excellent essay on OS choice, by Neal Stephenson:
Download the zip or mac-stuffit for the full essay. . . .

I considered Linux as a playful learning experience, and I hoped that it would encourage me to switch to Linux full time, but it never installed properly. I’ve tried four versions of the software over the last three years, and had problems with
sound cards
CD roms

Now given it’s a stable system, but why on earth would I want to spend hours tinkering with Xconfig or whatever trying to get simple things to work! They should just work. When they do, I’ll use Linux. Now don’t tell me: have you tried x y or z version of Linux, I have. My PCs (all three) are all about a year old, no more, and fairly standard (to my knowledge) configurations, so I don’t know what gives. I have tried each system, and always get the same results!

Linux basically sucks for non-technical people like myself. Note: I’m not anti-Linux, but I’d say it has a LONG way to go before it installs properly. And regular pc users like me can use it!

I upgraded one pc from 98 to XP pro, yes a learning curve, but installing was a breeze, and even reinstallation was easy!

So, sorry. I’ll be sticking with XP for a while yet…

Nor would I use a Mac… I just don’t like the closed format of the system… and upgrades, which should be easy, aren’t.


You just reminded me, that thread didn’t get hijacked at all. This is a prehijacking thread. This will be the thread I point to when someone has something to say about Windowz. I know your pains about viruses and stuff (from my PC tech days), but my non-hitech mom has figured out how to keep her (XP) computer virues free and backed up.

It is funny. the problems I have had are with those distros which are “easy to install”, such as RedHat and SuSe. Most of the problems go to the automated install and the way they detect the hardware. Much of my hardware is pieced together from old computers I have owned and it seems the automated install just doesn’t work for some of them, such as my old Twinhead LCD monitor. Those distros which I have to manually configure have worked without a problem.

I enjoy tinkering and didn’t mind going in and reconfiguring X to get my monitor working, but I understand how many people wouldn’t know where to start to get it working or even want to bother trying to find out how to get it working.

Again, I personally havent had a problem and have upgraded OS twice now (when buying a new system and when the newer OS was released)… both time were as smooth as a babys butt.

I know Taiwan is a weird Mac market but the customer service I get here in Oz from Mac is amazing… they fix any issues during my lunch hour and I dont need to ring some far flung call centre in another country nor send it to Singapore for repairs… everything gets done within an hour and 5 minutes walk from work.

Ken and Beat,

I can understand your problems, having had similar issues with a network card once.

However, I have a solution for you: try Knoppix.

You download the image, you burn a CD, and you set your machine to try to boot from your CD drive first (then try your hard drive later – BTW, most machines are set up this way by default).

Boot the CD you just burned, and you should have a fully-configured Linux system up and running. When you’re tired of watching it function without any problems, you can take the CD out and boot your machine, and your machine will be back to running Windows.

There’s only one detail: if your machine has an nVidia chipset or video card, you need to download a variant called Morphix instead, because of licensing issues with nVidia’s drivers. (You could just download Morphix to begin with, but it has slightly less software included, notably no C compiler.)

This way, you get to play with Linux to your heart’s content. Whenever you are desperate for viruses and trojans, you can reboot into Windows.


I do run Linux and BSD without a problem now, as I said the issues I ran into were solved and most of them were automated hardware detection issues on older hardware. Linux supports the hardware just fine after I went and made some manual changes. I just wanted to point out, yes, just like installing Windows, you may run into some issues, but I would encourage everyone to at least try Linux, companies like Linspire, SuSe, Red Hat, and Mandrake are attempting to pull Linux out of the geek realm and make it available to everyone.

As for the suggestions for Knoppix and Morphix, I agree whole-heartedly. I actually use the live Knoppix Security Tools Distribution at work most of the time – my company policy requires Windows XP but most of my actual work is more efficiently performed in a *nix environment and the hard-drive encryption software my company uses makes dual-booting impossible. I just use an encrypted USB flash drive to save my home directory and configurations.

If after using the live CDs people like Linux, does a pretty good job at reviewing what full distros are out there.