Windows

Top 11 Reasons IT won't run Windows on MACS


(excerpt from www.nwc.com 5.25.2006 -Andrew Conry-Murray and Tom Lasusa)

  1. OS X might infect Windows XP with usable features
  2. Who needs nuts when we have fruits?
  3. All those antivirus software licenses would go to waste
  4. If all computers ran like Macs, IT would be out of work
  5. They haven't perfected the Apple users's look of smug self-satisfaction
  6. The thought of Gates and Jobs "in bed together" gives them the willies
  7. If it ain't broke, don't Microsoft it
  8. You can't right-click with a one-button mouse
  9. The IT staff thinks Boot Camp means having to jog and do pushups
  10. They'd miss the late nights and free pizza on Patch Tuesdays
  11. The "Blue Screen of Death" hasn't been ported over yet
48 comments
vedoham
vedoham

Whenever I see Windows v Mac comments, I always laugh at the near-religious views and reactions of all sides and at the ignorance of many commentators, especially the Windows ones who talk condescendingly of Macs. I have worked in support since the days of DOS for Microsoft, System 6 for Apple, Solaris 2.5 for Sun, and Red Hat 6 for Linux - and I have lived through the various iterations of these OSs since then. I am now happily using and supporting Windows 2k/2k3, OS X, Solaris 7-10, and RHEL 3-4, and do not have much of a bias one way or the other. Macs have ALWAYS been easier to install and manage than PCs. I am always amazed at people who post that Macs cannot be managed remotely/globally in the same way that PCs can. Both pre- and post-OSX Macs can be managed remotely, be locked down, and have roaming profiles more cheaply and more easily than PCs with Active Directory and SMS. Both pre- and post-OSX Macs can be set up as file and/or web servers, again more cheaply and easily as PCs. The lack of Mac aplications is a myth. The great majority of office users work mostly with Office, Outlook, and Internet Explorer, which all exist either as MS applications or as equivalent applications on a Mac. A few years ago, the accounting, marketing, and sales departments of a company would probably have been hard put to use Macs (four years ago a company where I was contracting rolled out a purchase order and confirmation system that was only accessible through IE 6; I had to buy and set up a Citrix server in three days for the twenty-odd OS 9 users who had to have access to that system; although I was grateful that it gave me the opportunity to learn about Citrix, I could not believe that the developer and project manager managed to shift the blame to the Mac users! LOL) but these days so much is done through the browser that the possible lack of Mac versions of an application for those departments' work (or any other) is not an issue - although I am not sure that Bloomberg/Reuters can run on OS X. For the few for whom it might be, there is always Bootcamp/Parallels/Fusion or even Citrix. I have worked at a hedge fund that has been using Macs since System 7, a private equity fund that uses OS X and RHEL, and a private equity fund where one of the partners is using OS X when everyone else is on 2k and the servers are 2k3 with Exchangbe and sharepoint. SO using Macs exclusively or in conjunctions with other OSs can be done. I am not advocating that everyone switch to OS X Or that IT departments give users a choice of OS - who wants to support more than one desktop platform? Having a mixed 98/NT/2k environment in 2000/2002 was bad enough so supporting Windows and OS X would be a pain. You might want to have different desktop teams for each because most support techs do not have the ambition or work ethic to keep their skills up to date and in depth for both platforms. I am simply venting my frustration at ignorant comments about the lack of this and that in the Mac world. To go back to the article's actual content, I would simply say that it is a good (but cheeky) list that is almost certainly written to piss off the Windows fanatics. OS X is definitely a better operating system than XP/Vista, although there are Microsoft features that I wish the Apple developers would copy (like being able to delete/rename files from within an open or save dialogue box). For my personal use, I would switch over to a Mac laptop with XP/Vista and Fedora also installed (and keep my Solaris and Linux desktop boxes) if Apple added a right-click button... I could get used to ctrl-clicking in OS X but I do not think that Windows or Linux have an equivalent (pain-in-the-****) command for me to rush out to buy a Macbook Pro.

GentleRF
GentleRF

There is certainly a lot FUD on both sides of the equation. Also a lot of misinformation. Of course a Mac is not the be all and end all of computing and neither is a generic intel machine. What works best for you is what you should be using. Just don't let "it's what I'm used to" be a straight jacket to finding a truly good fit computer-wise. If I had done that, I'd still be using punch cards and paper tape.

Kyser Soze
Kyser Soze

I must be living in a parallel universe. This school district has about 25% MACS, yet the support staff is the same size as the Windows side and (seemingly) just as busy. The biggest differace I have seen in the past year has been Apples refusal to acknowledge and resolve issues, while I have been going through Dell hell managing contacters paid for by Dell, proactively replacing 1800 motherboards for potential cap failures. They also extended the warrenty on the problem machines to cover future issues. That is service, but that is also a company managment issue. The Apple people have been trying for months to get the OSX machines into AD, started deploying two weeks ago and then discovered the latest version has broken everything they did, so they are pulling the AD stuff out until next year. I really don't give a rats behind what OS a computer uses, I work on computers, I just wish the managment would do all one or all the other, and right now, Windows has the lead for lower initial buy in, TCO, AD intergration and centralized managment. Personally, I will not go Apple until I can build a computer from scraps and re-use an existing OS, like I am doing now with Windows. I am just that cheap.

cgcservices
cgcservices

Like you said, Macs can do as well as Windows, in some ways, even better. All discussions about the merits of either OS aside - the REAL reason why Windows won't run on APPLE HW (or for that matter why businesses won't jump up and down to buy MACs) is because they cost more ! I provide service and support to about 200 clients, half of which are small businesses. They just won't buy equipment that costs them at least 10 % more, even after discounts. Justt follow the money (like always...)

GentleRF
GentleRF

There is one issue you hadn't mentioned, total cost of ownership. As an on-call Mac tech to a local PC shop, I see a higher frequency of repair on windows boxes than on Macs. Lumpkin County schools in Georgia once had a live graphing of frequency of of service requests based on 100 PCs and 100 Macs. The average was four PC calls for each Mac call. I'm not saying this would be true of each type of computer installation/deployment, but it can be an indicator. Short term savings to destroy the long term results has always seemed myopic to me.

cgcservices
cgcservices

Good catch - hadn't quite gone that far in the thought process yet. One side note : PC HW is getting a tad bit more relilable (in the last year or so). Thanks !!!

LockOutGirl
LockOutGirl

That has to be the single most insightful, level-headed and knowledgable post about Windows v Macs I have ever seen. I truly appreciate that! It's nice to see not everyone is so polarized. I use a mac for home/personal things because I am into photography and graphics. I come to work and use PCs exclusively (unless the marketing head ever gets to purchase a Mac for her department, then I'll be her saving grace most of the day) and I can interchange easily between them. I have literally had my iBook in my lap and my hands on my PC, doing one thing on one, then switching to the other. I can't stand the anti- anything approach here. All OS have their merits, otherwise, they wouldn't be so hotly defended. I'll use a Mac for something I don't think a PC would handle, and I'll use a PC for something I wouldn't want to do on a Mac. Simple. Why the hatred? Seriously? Ok, this has turned into a rambling post, so I'm going to zip up now. Again, thank you for your awesome post!

rrpostal
rrpostal

So as long as you declare macs superior, but grudgingly use PCs, you are deemed reasonable?

rrpostal
rrpostal

A "personal attack"? Really? I truly didn't mean to imply any sort of attack. I just don't think the reasonable post was all that reasonable unless you have a Mac bias. I think that the post by lockoutgirl said that the post was something like "the most reasonable post..." etc. It was the OTHER post, the one by vedoham, that has a bias that I was was talking about, and I still stand by that assessment. So when "attacking" me about "attacking" someone else about not "inferring" something else, don't "infer" things I didn't intend in my "attack".

GentleRF
GentleRF

I saw your reply to the personal attack and had to say, "Yup." You did not say what he inferred.

LockOutGirl
LockOutGirl

I never said that. I said that I'll use each at what they're good at. I hate designing anything on a PC, I prefer a mac. But, there are things I hate doing on a mac as well. Each has their strengths and their weaknesses.

atroon
atroon

My wife bought a Mac and I was surprised to find out that at least in the latest generation of the Mighty Mouse, you can right click by pressing on the right side of the housing. There's no separate button, and if you press both sides down it's a standard click, but boy, has that made Mac usage a lot easier.

apotheon
apotheon

It's a shame that functionality isn't built into the laptops yet.

johnlutes
johnlutes

A loyal and enthusiastic Mac user from 1989 until iTunes. Wife has MacBook, uses both environments and loves the experience. When Apple began gouging [4[Informal] an act of overcharging or cheating of money; extortion or swindle] the public with iTunes (the no value added money collector)I sold my Mac, my Apple stock, gave the awful ipod to my wife, and never looked back. You know? after 12 plus years of "Apple enthusiasm", I just don't miss any of it.

rrpostal
rrpostal

Although I've never owned a Mac myself (the one button thing just seemed so... featureless). Well my kids wanted iPods (they are "cool") so I've had to deal with iTunes. Where before I had iApathy, I now have iDisgust. Why is it so...so...obtuse? My cheaper drag and drop play anything cheapo mp3 does everything it does easier better. I don't assume the iWhatever computer is the same way compared to my jack of all trades PC, but I do wonder.

GentleRF
GentleRF

More buttons is not necessarily better. Neither is having so many "features" it would take being a triple PhD to understand even a tenth of them. I tend to like something that just works and doesn't break. For me, the Mac fills that bill. The only bad thing that happened to my G4-400 was the cost of upgrading the machine's optical drive from CD/DVD-ROM to DL burner.

rrpostal
rrpostal

I totally agree that more is not necessrily better. A/V remotes where I can't find the channel or volume is a perfect example. But if you want to say that a one-button mouse is a "better" idea, well I guess different tastes. To me it's like saying a keyboard with one key would be better for it's simplicity. I will admit to some ignorance here, but what I've used from Mac, I find complicated where I like it simple and simple where I prefer options. It may just be taste...

GentleRF
GentleRF

You feel that way. I personally don't use the iTunes Music Store. The player on the other hand is pretty good. I may not agree with you since I continue to use and appreciate the Mac, but not everyone can or will relate well to a Mac and its operating system. I could have done the same thing as you for more political/emotional/religious reasons but didn't. (Referring here to Apple's support for domestic partners, not just the married ones).

roctanberg
roctanberg

Tired of wrestling with the old gray matter. fedup with having to think for yourself. Like having to pay twice as much for parts and labor. Then get a MAC I have one, I use it to think for those who have forgotten how.

dodell
dodell

I don't want my brain to rot. I need to know every part in the car, how it works, where it goes and how it relates to the other parts. Each time I go to start the car there is something new I have to figure out in order to get it moving. If it weren't for my vast knowledge of Yugos I'd be stuck paying a little more initally for something reliable that I could just hop in and not worry about. Those people who drive new, reliable cars have forgotten how to think for themselves.

GentleRF
GentleRF

Is not the same as owning a computer. Sure, there are analogies which can be drawn to support the premise one is making, but that does not validate that premise. I personally don't buy a vehicle I cannot work on. I do the same for a computer and I do happen to know the insides of Macs better than the average bear. I also happen to know a bit more about PC hardware than many Mac users/owners would believe. As far as cars go, I happen to have a '91 Geo Metro which gets 43.7 MPG combined. I have a '90 I am trying to get an engine for. Does that mean I have forgotten how to use my brain? I doubt it.

dodell
dodell

And I have Macs at home and use Windows at work. Of course you haven't forgotten how to use your brain and neither have Mac users that know nothing about computers nor PC users that know much about computers. I didn't do a good job of making my point. A computer is just a tool. It is a very versatile tool that can perform as many different tasks as there are computer users. Creative types love Macs because they don't have to think about the inner workings of the computer as much and so are free to create. Macs are great for anybody who doesn't want to have to think about the inner workings of computers because for the most part they just work (not always true, but more true than for windows). With OS X Macs are also great for those who do want to think about inner workings because OS X is based on Unix. Windows PCs are great for those who want to play games and some other things. For the most part Windows PCs are better mainly because of momentum. Because Windows has been the dominant OS for so long more stuff is written for it, but there isn't much you can do on Windows that you can't do on a Mac.

marinocl
marinocl

if I take your comment at face value, if I don't own a MAC I don't think by myself... that's MAC's marketing hogwash. I find such kind of snobbery form MAC users a little bit irritating.

jeremy
jeremy

Macs (and ipods) are for people with too much money and who are more into fashion and eye candy than actually getting work done on a computer or getting/having an understanding of how they actually work.

Rick_from_BC
Rick_from_BC

You may be working in a building designed on a Mac with Vectorworks, on a computer where some of the components were designed and tested with Mac software. My Intel Mac and LCD screen are comparable in price to the PC I use at work, but the Mac is faster running the programs I need to than my work PC. And I'm talking about running Visio, Access, and other PC-only programs, as well as the usual office programs like Word and Excel. And Entourage (the Mac version of Outlook) has office features that Outlook users really like - but don't have, like the 'Projects" sub-system. So, I have a stylish, hard- working, fast and versatile machine, and you've got -???

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

Well, I'm not going to try and say that Apple does not recognize that some buy there products as fashion accessories. What company would not take advantage of every possible reason for a sale? But to say that all Apple products are a fashion accessory meant only for those with too much money to spend is just ludicrous. The iPod; sure, marketing and fashion bling. it plays music too but selling it as a functional accessory was not by accident more having celebrities suddenly seen with jewel encrusted custom cases for them. The iPhone will have some "fashion accessory" apeal as any cell phone does for the few minutes before it's novelty wares off. But those notebooks and desktops you may have seen in passing don't fit your claim. yes, again, some will dump money just to be seen with the new gadget but most people are buying osX boxes too use for stuff. Graphic artists and the usual suspects; obvious. Cult of Mac; obvious. The average computer user; Apple does design really well and it shows in there very closed total end user experience. As for the too much money bit specifically. Nope. A notebook or desktop is about the same cost as an equally built Windows machine. Apple just won't skimp on hardware quality so you don't see 400$ brand new osX machines like those "bargooon" department store notebooks; 400$ all in - including the cheapest hardware we could find to keep the price down for you, our unsuspecting customer.

GentleRF
GentleRF

If that were the case, how come Gates & CO aren't on the bandwagon? Answer: Not Invented Here. I have a Mac client who is 85 years old, has a sizable fortune, and absolutely loves her tray-load CRT iMac. She uses it daily to communicate with others and manage her wealth. I know she doesn't take it on trips with her because of its mass. I am also smart enough to recognize when a person like her doesn't need something to bleed away her money like some OS/platforms can do. Not everyone is a rabid gamer or in lock-step with corporate IT decrees.

apotheon
apotheon

If you want all that good stuff, you should use something open source.

iainwrig
iainwrig

Seem to keep you even more distant from what is really going on in your computer than windows...

dutchrai
dutchrai

As an IT'er who uses both PC and Mac in client and server roles, I have no doubt that the Mac is a 'better' OS (and runs on better hardware too). Mac OS X is definitely 'better' when you simply look at the technical aspects of it. It has no virusses, few security issues, simply feels more solid...etc. It's feature packed. And personally, I prefer the Mac as well. Yes, it's 'Better'. However, the usual problem remains for most departments in a company: there are very few business applications for the Mac. Our company has a few Macs though, even a slim'n cool XServe in File Server mode running Apple Remote Desktop too (great stuff) and an old G4 as an reliable FTP server. Our graphical departments of course use Mac's too. But for the rest, it's all PC's. Troubled PC's. Needing patches...frequently. Viruses...yes...almost daily somewhere. SOD...(yes, the dreaded Screen Of Death)...it happens once in a while. But in the end we have no choice, our business needs the apps running on it. It's a sad world, but you really don't blame IT for putting PC's all over the place. Instead, simply remember that it's the rest of the company that dictates the requirements in the first place. It's IT's role to support these requirements.

Why Me Worry??
Why Me Worry??

I have yet to see entire corporations run nothing but MACs'throughout their organizations. MACs' are usually confined to graphics and marketing departments, due to the narrow list of applications available for a MAC, but you'll never find them in any other department such as finance or sales. Also, the argument that MACs' don't get viruses is false because viruses can be written for MACs', but the virus writers would rather concentrate their efforts on targeting systems that have a larger user base, such as Windows. Your entire argument is one sided and lacks credibility because you seem to lack the knowledge about how Windows systems work and how easy it is to update Windows systems using things like group policies, SUS, or SMS. Also, the BSOD is not as common today on XP and 2003 as is was in NT 4.0 because the kernels are a bit more resilient, and the majority of blue screens were caused by user stupidity in terms of incompatible hardware. I have yet to see MACs' be easily managed on a network as PCs' are. Although MACs' can be networked using TCPIP and can access data on Windows servers,they are not the most ideal client side system to be dealing with when it comes to corporate networks.

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

I think the idea that osX has few viruses only because it's a small market share is complete bunk. Now, so too is the idea that osX is bulletproof; bunk good only for marketing ads. The BSD under the hood means osX get's close to the same hardening that a true BSD has but Apples closed source running in the foreground will have it's share of bugs and virus usable hooks. I also can't accept any idea based on "they have the biggest market share so that's why virus writers only target them." There are too many different motivations for viral code and only a few are because some disgruntled high school kid wants a virus running rampant against someone they don?t like. If a professional criminal has targeted a system that requires going into or through osX then they?ll focus on osX. There?s limited motivation to infect home users other than botnets so the focus is on whatever OS is on the business side of the criminal act. The ?no one writes bad stuff for your pet OS because you chose the one with smaller financial profits? argument just don?t fly. My question would be more in terms like; Why *can?t* any client workstation using common protocols connect seamlessly with a Windows server? (Oh, right, then your decision to use one MS product wouldn?t force your decision to use the rest of them; I remember how that business model works now) I get the gist of your post though I think. osX is not bulletproof, Windows is easy to admin with enterprise tools. I should go back and read the previous post again. I don?t remember how creditable it read. Ah, I?m just making noise.. I end my ramble at that.

Vandy-SJ
Vandy-SJ

I support a few businesses that use both Macs and PCs, and both platforms are critical for running the business. The Macs are used primarily for graphics design, and access large data files on Windows servers without a problem, but are also used by designers to access their corporate e-mail accounts. When it comes to standard office documents on the Macs, Microsoft Office for Macintosh is the default application suite, but many designers jump on a PC with Microsoft Office to do most of those documents. Each platform and application set serves it purpose - these are, after all, just business tools. PCs as a group are easier to maintain using group policies. Macs are maintained individually, one-on-one, which takes more IT time. When well maintained, both can be reliable and productive platforms.

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

I read it as more of a playing dumb jokingly; "what's maintenance? I don't know what that is, I'm a Mac user. What's this maintenance you Windows people speak of." That sort of thing. So I'm happy that it was actually a valid question you where posing. I read "Maintenance" to mean the general upkeep of the network and nodes involved. Example: Windows needs a defrag from time to time, needs to be rebooted at least once a week and needs it's updates applied regularily. The other OS all have there similar regular maintenance that needs to be done. I keep telling friends they have to update there antivirus, run adaware, check for system updates and whatever else applies at least once a month; I keep fixing there machines when the don't too. (I discovered that the firewall had been turned off completely on the last machine I fixed.)

Vandy-SJ
Vandy-SJ

GentleRF, in my IT world "to maintain" is to keep it running at peak performance with the least downtime, and to correct problems when they occur. It applies to all client and server platforms, regardless of the type of OS. Both Windows and Macintosh/OSx clients need 'maintenance' from time to time. Microsoft releases monthly updates for Windows platforms, antivirus and antispyware updates occur almost daily, and most machines need some hard drive maintenance from time to time. Macintosh/OSx platforms are different, but they still need similar 'maintenance' on occasion. Apple releases fixes and updates for OSx as well, just like Sun and IBM do for Solaris and AIX. Apple hard drives need maintenance too, as they are usually the first component to fail in any computer system. To 'maintain' is meant to be equal, but the procedures may be different depending on the platform and OS. If you are so inclined, read up Windows servers, Active Directory, and Group Policy to answer your question about 'group policies'.

GentleRF
GentleRF

Was to obtain what his organization's or his personal definition of 'maintain' meant and was the definition being applied equally. I have learned that IT shops don't always apply the same definitions to the same procedures.

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

Please learn more about both osX and Windows before contrasting the two or responding with further feeble jokes.

GentleRF
GentleRF

What do you mean by "maintain?" I'm not exactly sure of your meaning when you say "group policies" either.

jattas
jattas

I have worked as Dir of IT, at a newspaper for years. We have a large proportion of MACs. The graphics people love them. I sold them for years. But when it comes to running a several thousand installation, IT dreads the MACs. The MACs live in their own world, which is fine for the graphics people. Unfortunately the applications and utilities provided for PCs, is more mainstream. Acknowledging that Mac is advanced is easy. Acknowledging that working with MAC OS of any variety in the past was straightforward as far as technical problems, updates and hardware updates, was not. MACs were classified at my sites as not very professional in support or upgradeability. End of Story.

techrepublic
techrepublic

drives me nuts when self-proclaimed computer experts talk about MAC computers. It is "Mac" as in "Macintosh", silly. "MAC" is the address on an ethernet card or other NIC. Regarding upgradability ... buy your Macs near the top of the line & they will last you a good 4-5 years or longer with no need to upgrade them.

yobtaf
yobtaf

That's your problem. Why are you crying to us. I love OS X. I recommend that you get a job at an all PC shop or stop griping.

Editor's Picks