At the suggestion of my buddy Brad, I set up a Windows machine under VMWare Fusion (as opposed to Parallels, which is what I’ve used up until now).
I am absolutely amazed. From the time I pointed VMWare’s virtual machine setup dialog to my Windows install media it took a mere 11 minutes to create the VM, install Windows XP Pro, reboot, install the VMWare drivers, and reboot again. The machine was completely ready to go in 11 minutes. So far, the machine seems *really* rock solid and responsible.
Wow. Beat that with a stick.
I know I’m not the first to blog about this, but my good pal Brad Wilson (the DotNetGuy) told me about a single command you can execute that turns the dock from this:
(which is visually impressive for a day or two, then it just looks cluttered because of all the eye candy they put in) to the 2D version, which looks like this:
There is still some transparency (it’s not just icons on a black background) but this looks so much cleaner. If you’re interested, open up a terminal window and execute the following command (it may appear on two lines, but it should be entered on a single line):
defaults write com.apple.dock no-glass -boolean YES; killall Dock
I’ve done video chats with people using iChat on Tiger and it’s been mostly great. But I had never done a video *conference* chat, where you can video chat with two or more people at the same time until this morning when I tried it on iChat for Leopard.
I did a video chat with three other people, and the way iChat was able to handle it without a hiccup was pretty amazing. The UI is very impressive and the way you can still share photos and files and they way there is no lag when people are talking just puts it light years in front of anything else I’ve ever tried.
I read the article below and while I don’t necessarily share ALL of the writer’s expectations with regard to Leopard over Vista or Apple over Microsoft, he does indicate that Leopard will embarrass Microsoft (and specifically, Vista).
I blogged recently about how I don’t believe Microsoft has to fail in order for Apple to win. Apple is already winning (just look at their products and look at their stock price – clearly a winning company). I’m not sure if the author of the article below feels the same way, but when he said that Leopard would embarrass Microsoft, I don’t agree. I think *Microsoft embarrassed itself* when it released Vista.
There are those who will say that Microsoft has sold 88 million copies of Vista and how huge those numbers are and how that makes Vista a success. But when I hear people say that, I think about how Microsoft forced Netscape and other browsers out of the market based on questionable business practices and loads of anti-trust cases and I really start to wonder what makes up that 88 million.
Clearly people are buying new computers at record rates. So that’s got something to do with the 88 million number, particularly when you stop to think about how Microsoft would not allow OEMs to ship a computer with anything BUT Vista. That was overturned, and now vendors like Dell will sell you a computer with XP, but it doesn’t take away from the point: Vista sold a lot of copies because vendors simply were not allowed to sell a computer with any other operating system (servers aside). Is this reminiscent of those old practices that got Microsoft in to so much trouble with the law? Who knows. But it’s one point that starts to make ME wonder.
CNET Blog Entry
I bought the family pack of Leopard this evening and only had to wait on line about 25 minutes. There were about 200 people ahead of me, but somehow they were able to move those people through the store very quickly. Interesting thing to note was that when I had made my way up through 75% of the line, I looked back and the back of the line was at the same point at which I started. This blog entry is called “First Impressions”, and with that in mind, I will keep this very short and say three things.
1. I had hoped that doing an upgrade on my Mac Pro from Tiger to Leopard would be sweet. When I was a Windows user, I had upgraded time and time again, through virtually all versions of Windows, and each time the system was extremely sluggish and very disappointing in performance. I therefore formed the opinion that no one with any kind of technical know-how should EVER do an upgrade of their operating system. It’s just too big of a deal. I was of the frame of mind that whenever you were going to install a new OS, you needed to reformat your drive and start from scratch.
Apple wasn’t able to sway me from that opinion. While my Mac Pro performs acceptably, it most certainly doesn’t perform like a quad-core 3.0 GHz system with 5 gigs of RAM. I will therefore be doing a reformat and reinstall on this box as soon as I have the time. Meanwhile, I will enjoy the GREAT features of Leopard, such as Spaces (discussed in item 3).
2. A fresh install of Leopard is quite literally amazing. My MacBook Pro (which I think is the first-generation 15″ unit with 2 gigs of RAM) performs (I swear) BETTER under Leopard than it did under Tiger. And that’s something I absolutely NEVER could have said about any Windows OS upgrade. My MacBook Pro is extremely responsive and I’m just loving the experience. This is a far cry from when I first tried out two other major releases this year: Vista and Office 2007. I spent so much time trying to figure out how to do things I already knew how to do that I became very sour on those products and just stopped using them.
3. Spaces is just freakin’ awesome. This concept of having multiple desktops that you can switch between is by no means new to either Mac OS or Windows, but in Mac OS the implementation is just SWEET. The performance is amazing, the user experience is nothing short of what you’d expect from Apple, and I’ve already found Spaces super-useful even though I’ve only had it installed for a couple of hours. I plan to get in to Time Machine when I get a new external hard drive. I’ll also blog about various other Leopard findings. But I feel it is important to make one final point.
I first installed Vista Beta 2 when I was a devout Microsoft Fan Boy and I was both disappointed and surprised at what the public was to come to expect as the next “major release” of Windows. Similarly, I installed Leopard as a devout Apple Fan Boy almost two years later and contrary to my Vista experience, Leopard feels like an extension of all the goodness, reliability, and strength that I already had at my disposal in Tiger – not a replacement of things merely for the purpose of change.
More to come!
I was delighted to finally read that the official release date for Mac OS X Leopard is Friday October 26th. The Engadget story mentions the pricing: $129 for a single license, $199 for a 5-license family pack. It then goes on (in a bit of sarcasm) and mentions how there is no upgrade pricing. Well let’s just think about that for a second.
While I too would love to get it cheaper, I think it’s important to note here that the $129 full retail price (for the version that has everything – the only version they sell) is $30 cheaper than the upgrade for Windows Vista Home Premium. I might also add that the Home Premium edition doesn’t even have all the features that Leopard does. If you want to come closer to Leopard, you’d need the Ultimate edition, whose upgrade price is a whopping $249. Almost twice as much as a full license to Leopard.
While people can (and will) always complain about pricing (even as I have done in the past regarding an Apple product), I just have to say that $129 is a pittance for a product like OS X. It’s a price that makes it an option for millions and millions of people. The family pack, which allows me to install it on up to five machines in my home is a steal at $199.
I’ve gotten free versions of Windows for the past seven or eight years because of the MSDN subscriptions that I’ve had, so I never had to look at pricing. It wasn’t until I had to buy a friend a copy of Windows Ultimate from the company store that I found out how much it was and I just couldn’t believe it. A retail price of $399.95. I was floored. That wasn’t for a family pack, mind you. That was just ONE license.