2007-06-27

Me and Mac OS X

Ok... after banging my head against the wall with my first Mac OS X problem, heres the text I was writing about my first impressions with Mac OS X.


One of the reasons for me to buy a MacBook was that I wanted to try Mac OS X. I wanted to try another operating system and was specially attracted because I was told it was based in UNIX and add it's flexibility but being very easy to use at the same time.

Anyway, my first idea was to set up a tri-boot system with a very small Mac OS X partition (for experimenting with it), a bit larger partition for Windows XP (I like games...) and a big fat partition for my main operating system: Linux.

Things didn't go as I expected. I chose Ubuntu for the Linux part but, as I expected, had to fiddle around with some configurations. If I had tried any other distribution, I would probably have even more problems but still I had some tweaking to do. I kept moving from house to house (due to personal reasons) with no wired Internet connection available and wireless in Ubuntu wasn't very stable. So I ended using Mac OS X all the time.

I have now changed my partition scheme. A much bigger partition to Mac OS X and a smaller partition to Linux. Windows remains as the "gaming operating system" as I don't use it for anything else.

With the new Ubuntu Feisty Fawn and a much stable wireless set up, Linux is still in the race for my favourite operating system on my MacBook. But I can easily access my Mac OS X partition using Linux and I can't say the same for Mac OS X - maybe with MacFUSE - so I can keep my music files, pictures and movies in my Mac OS X partition and still read them while I'm on Linux. Ok... I could also put them on an NTFS partition and access them from any OS but, let's face it, NTFS sucks :).

There are still a lot of things I prefer doing in Linux. I specially like the ability to change everything to fit my needs, moving windows by grabbing any spot of the window (not only the header), choosing what windows to display on top all the time, virtual desktops (Leopard will feature Spaces), open compositing, the openness and the great community. But I also know that sometimes is better to have things just work without any tweaking. Specially if you carry your laptop everywhere, to places where you don't have Internet available, and want to quickly set up something to work on or show off like you vacation's pictures in a beautiful slide show displayed on your (or theirs) living room television.

To be fair, there are still things that are easier to set up in Linux - I had a hard time setting up a PHP 4 and 5 programming environment until I found MAMP that I know I would solve them in Linux with a few apt-get commands - but any of the problems I experienced had to be solved right away.

I look forward for the new Mac OS X Leopard and I'll probably purchase it but I'm surely not forgetting Linux.