Making the Switch to Mac (Part 1 of 3)

MacAs you may know the MacBook Pro laptops are increasing in sales. Plus the stock of the Apple increased after the release of the iPhone. So it looks like 2007 will be a great year for Apple.

But you may still be wondering what's the big difference between a Mac and PC? In my opinion, PC’s are great for business, while Mac’s are awesome for creative types.  A lot of people are converting from PC to a Mac. I just purchased my first MacBook Pro 17” 100GB 7200rpm with Final Cut Pro right before Christmas.  That means I've been a Mac user for about a month, and in words of a cup size from Coldstone ice cream, I “love it.” This is the first installation of three articles detailing my experience in switching from a PC to a Mac.

Before you freak out about making the switch, settle down. I want you to know that you can still have Windows!! What? You say….?  Yes you can still have Windows on your Mac. There are two awesome products available that allow you to run the Windows Operating System (OS) on your Mac.  These products are: Boot Camp (free) and Parallels ($79).

How do they work?

Boot Camp partitions your hard drive, meaning your hard drive is divided in two. Lets say you have a 100GB hard drive and you partition it, you'll then have two 50GB hard drives. This way it's able to host the Windows OS on one side (50GB) and Mac OS on the other (50GB). Warning this only works with the Intel processor Mac’s. Check out this link for more requirements on Boot Camp and how to download it. Boot Camp gives you the option to switch back and forth from Windows XP OS and Mac OS. So you get enjoy the best of both worlds.

The newest product for a Mac is called Parallels.  This software was ranked as one of best in show at the recent Macworld Expo in San Francisco. Parallels allow you to run Linux and Windows on a Mac without having to switch back and forth. Therefore you don’t have to partition your hard drive like Boot Camp. You can open up Windows OS in your Mac OS and use them both at the same time. Check out the pic below! 367720400 ad5713bc8b

Parallels allow you to edit, drag, and drop files between both OS’s!!! Parallels is also Vista compatible. Something that will benefit those moving to Vista when the product ships in February. For more info, check out these two articles from CNN & Wired.

A friend of mine is a grad student in Library and Information Science at the University of Illinois.  She mentioned to me that her Graduate School is using Parallels for the “Learning Resource Center.” She also mentioned if you do use Parallels and Windows OS, you still have to buy anti-virus software for your Mac. Whereas the Mac OS is less likely to be hacked or to receive viruses.

I hope Part 1 of this article helps you understand that you don’t have to get rid of all your Windows knowledge. You can still use it on your Mac. Windows OS doesn’t allow you to use Mac OS on a PC. So with your Mac OS you can use Boot Camp or Parallels to integrate Windows OS onto your Mac computer. Stay tuned for part two where I will give you m ore tips on adapting to the Mac OS.


  1. 27 January, 2007 at 01:52

    Macs are still better for graphics. Go into any ad agency as a freelancer and they will sit you in front of a Macintosh. Whether you are a graphic designer, video person, or Photoshop artist. The only exception I’ve even seen to that rule is in web shops, and there it’s split about 50/50.

    I’ve watched a lot of graphics freelancers lose gigs because they didn’t have basic Mac skills.

  2. Nick Schmidt 24 January, 2007 at 06:44

    Thanks for the comment Maqpie. It was good to hear from you. I just want to make sure that everyone understand that this article is just for people thinking/wanting to get a Mac. I don’t want them to get Mac unless they understand about OS and software. I got my Mac basically so I can use Final Cut Pro for my vlogs. I used to use Abode Premiere 2.0 for my vlogs. I just wanted to try the Mac for my vlogs. All the other times I use my PC. Yes I will be doing an article(s) on Vista. I just got a request yesterday do this as well. So I don’t want this article(s) about Mac’s vs. PC to be unfair. That is not my attention. The reader can make up their own mind. I’m a PC user too and I love it and can’t wait for Vista to come out!!! Now I wasn’t using the stock market to persuade you to buying Mac’s. I just wanted to state the fact the the stock rose after the announcement of the iPhone. No one knows if the iPhone will be a dud with lots of problems or a good phone, we will find out later this year. Sorry,that I got my accounting side out of me. The stock market is just a education guess for gambling..You never know what is going to happen with the stock market, but you can make some good assumptions from history.

  3. Magpie Saltimbanchi 24 January, 2007 at 03:45

    “In my opinion, PC’s are great for business, while Mac’s are awesome for creative types.”

    I’m glad you pointed out that this is only your opinion. In fact, it’s actually a stereotype that has been perpetuated since the first Macs came out. Everywhere I go, I hear “Macs are better for graphics” when these days there is absolutely no difference. I say this as someone who creates web pages, edits images, creates images, authors podcasts, etc. on a daily basis. I’ve even been the assistant editor on an award-winning film that -gasp- was created 100% on a PC.

    Back in the day, yes, Macs had the advantage. But with more applications being created for both platforms, there is scarce little that even a power user might notice. Another thing that should be pointed out is that the number of free, open-source programs out there is growing exponentially. And many of those are created only for the PC. In my opinion (that word again), some of the early drawbacks of PCs helped launch a wave of software creativity that has been unparalleled in the Mac world.

    So, I’m happy that you are posting this series of articles, but I would encourage you to keep things a bit more fair & balanced. How about a series of articles on Vista? I’d also discourage you from using a corporations rise in stock price as a motivation for buying a product.

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