You’ve heard it before, An apple a day keeps the doctor away! But, does Apple’s OS X really keep the doctor away? Is it the secure, stable, and elegant operating system you’ve been dreaming for?
Apple’s OS X is elegant, but so is Windows XP, certainly Vista (Microsoft’s new operating system out early 2007), and even certain flavours of Linux. It seems pretty and well laid out from a far, but to a newbie it much harder to start then with the start buttons in Windows & A Linux GUI. It may be elegant, but keeps part of the past that just doesn’t work, like using the finder to launch an application. Perhaps I should have said Elegant Design… because clearly it is there where it lacks. Its not all bad though… tools such as Quicksilver, Launchbar, Spotlight, and Gadgets can make things simpler. Windows Vista has Gadgets in its sidebar, and fast launching apps due to the old Start Button.
How about Secure? Many claim that the lack of substantial virus, hacks, or spyware proves that OS X is more secure than Windows XP. Though Vista has yet to be truly tested in its security, Microsoft has included many new security based innovations in Windows Vista. However even on a side by side comparison of Windows XP SP2 versus OS X Tiger, one must point out that Windows has an amazing 90% market share and is thus the obvious target of any virus, hack, or spyware creator. Why Worms Shun Apple’s OSX is an informative article from Business Week about how Worm writes choose money over glory. Meaning instead of proving they could hack OS X, they would rather bring down 50% of computers or better yet have one worm that steals information or displays adware. In fact, Apple OS X release security patches every month just like Microsoft!
Well, you figure its just as elegant and secure as Windows and obviously more stable so your gonna switch. Well you might be correct in that it is more stable… but it is all from your viewpoint. People always talk about the Windows Blue Screen of Death. Apple doesn’t have that, it works all the time. Incorrect! It may not have a Blue Screen of Death, but it certainly has a Grey Screen of Death informing you to restart your computer. Safari 1.x ran slower than FireFox and Internet Explorer one avid Apple fan says in a review which also covers some of the pitfuls of OS X including possible slowdowns! Though Safari 2.0 is just a fast he claims. But back to Windows XP, the main reason it crashes is due to third party drivers and hardware. Apple is in a proprietary world that doesn’t have those problems even with its major shift from PowerPC to x86. If you however, ran OS X on your x86 PC, it would most likely crash. That is where you really appreciate the stability and flexibility of Linux and Windows. Even with its shift, Apple still makes the computer and all the parts which in turn raised prices due to lack of competition. My Sony Vaio with Windows XP hasn’t crashed once, I guess its a good hardware combo! So stability is there, but sacrifice flexibility and price.
But, this isn’t to hamper on Apple. It just destroys my favourite myth that Apple OS X keeps the doctor away. In fact, Apple needs the doctor in Design, Security, and Stability. I think its gave and take, though I’m sure hardcore apple fans will disagree. Windows XP or a good Linux Flavour is just as Elegant, Secure, and Stable as OS X with the right hardware and software patches. In fact, when I check for Spyware or Viruses on my Windows XP, there are always none!