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Author: TwoCybers Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 188740  
Subject: Re: Newbe Apple question - Date: 4/30/2013 7:56 AM
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Math999man - You should start reading here

While some folks on this board have factual knowledge of Apple, few have the level of knowledge needed to answer your questions.

Parallels is a $70 program, it is not provided or even written by Apple. I use Parallels and have found it is excellent for Windows 7. If you want to use Windows on a Mac, you will need a full copy of Windows - that specifically excludes the copies people get with a Dell or HP. Those copies are OEM and legal for one and only one physical PC. In some cases, the specific copy will not even work on different models of say Dell PCs. You could buy an OEM disk and use it - that certainly would be cheaper than a full retail disk.

I switch, under Parallels, between Windows and OSX by clicking a Windows or Mac program's icon -- in short once Parallels is running and Windows has booted, my Macs don't know if the icon is this or that OS. The Parallels User Manual at over 200 pages is excellent.

Apple includes a program called BootCamp which will run Windows - again you need a copy of Windows. To swap between OSX and Windows you must reboot the PC. If you are only running Windows programs once or twice a week, this might be just fine. I run Quicken for Windows (my only Windows program) at least once and often 3 or 4 times a day. Rebooting once to get to Quicken and again to return to OSX that often is something I am willing to pay $70 to avoid.

Boot Camp gives you a pure Windows machine with zero Apple overhead. So if you need maximum speed for serious gaming, BootCamp is the way to go. But PCs have gotten fast in recent years and the Virtual Machines have gotten better, so I am not sure how much of an advantage beyond bragging rights actually exists. (If you Google Parallels or VMware performance you should get hits with data.) While there are lots of Windows uses happy with WindowsXP, I don't believe that is not going to run under BootCamp. Apple does not place a high value on assuring legacy for 10 year old software.

To the extent costs are a significant factor, things are changing. Microsoft has moved to a subscription business model. Think $99 a year for Office and as yet unclear annual cost for Windows. The details on Office are at Microsoft.com. Apple tends in recent years toward annual OS updates, but the cost of these updates have been much lower than the Windows costs even when the frequency is taken into account.

Apple has the Mac App Store (MAS) for its software. If you purchase one copy of a program (Apple or any publisher), you can download it repeatedly to any Mac that is associated with the AppleID that purchased the program. There are no issues with lost or stolen disks - just download. Even the Operating System can be downloaded -- there is enough firmware in a Mac to log on the internet and download the OS.

I believe your hardware question is about the MacBook Pro, not the Mac Pro which is large desktop box and am going to answer based on my belief. Macs are setup/designed for Wireless. I am writing this on a MacBook Air which has less ports than the MacBook Pros. It is not a problem generally. The only situation I have run into that I had to work around is loading Windows7 which came on a disk. I merely took a PC that had an Optical Disk drive and copied the Windows Disk to a Flash drive. Plugged the flash drive into my MacBook Air and installed Win7. If you must have an Ethernet connection, Apple sells a dongle that goes from the Thunderbolt port to an Ethernet cable. I have one, tested it to assure myself it works and have never used. With USB3 becoming more common for external hardware, connectivity is becoming less of an issue.

Macs have a slick deal if you have more than one in a room - does not depend on Mac ownership. Both Macs fire up a program named AirDrop. Mac #1 drops a file or folder on the icon for Mac#2 which AirDrop puts on the screen. AirDrop say do you want to send this to Mac#2. You say Yes. Mac#2's screen asks, Do you want to accept this? After Mac#2 agrees, the transfer happens. I actually sent 12 GB from my iMAc to my MacBook Air last week - my iTune library. It was faster then using a Flash Drive - much faster.

The biggest issues I had when I changed was getting used to "different" stuff. When Gates wrote Windows, he moved the icon to turn off programs from the upper left window corner to the upper right. Names of things are different - just chicken crap. If you want to get a flavor of Mac, I suggest you go to:
and subscribe to multiple Newletters. It is easy to remove yourself if you want. To learn a bit about the OS and UI, keep an eye out for articles by Chris Breen.

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