In January 2009 I bought my first Mac computer. I thought it was the best thing ever! I loved the look of Macs, both the physical look as well as the operating system. Macs seemed so much easier to use than Windows computers and it just seemed like the "cool" thing to have.
Over the years I spent countless hours on my Mac. I would spend every day on my Mac, doing genealogy research, playing games, editing photos in Photoshop, surfing the web and learning about all of then tech items that were up-and-coming.
This post is the first in a series in which I will go over in detail why I decided to switch back to a Windows computer and the pros and the cons between the two. At first I was going to do just one post, but as I was putting it together I realized that it would be an extremely long post and people might be bored of reading one big post. Therefore I decided to break it up into several posts, allowing me to go into the detail I want to make my point as to which operating system I prefer and why.
As time passed over the years I noticed there were things that I wished I had on my Mac like certain software and features. There were a couple of main reasons I used my computer. The first was probably genealogy and the second was school. Except for those two reasons, all the other reasons I used my computer were small and not for very long periods at a time. The more I used my computer for genealogy the more I learned that there were a lot of programs I liked to help me with my genealogy research, but the only problem was that those programs only worked on Windows computers.
I did some researching and found a number of ways that I could still use those Windows programs on my Mac! The first option I used was the program called VMware Fusion. This program allows you to install a copy of Windows on your computer and run a "virtual" Windows computer on your Mac at the same time you can use other Mac programs. I used this option for a couple of years. However, I was never really pleased with how slow it made my computer, so I moved onto the next option.
I installed a program called CrossOver. This program was nice because I didn't have to spend the time and hard drive space on my Mac installing a copy of Windows. It is also a nice alternative to VMware Fusion or Parallels because you don' have to purchase a copy of Windows. Anyway, I used CrossOver for a couple of years. It pretty much tricked your Mac into thinking it was running Windows so you could install software and run it as if you really were running Windows. The main problem I had with this option was that it was really buggy in software that wasn't "verified." So, when I tried to install most of my genealogy software, many times it either wouldn't install at all, or if it did install it would be really buggy and freeze or crash on me a lot. So, after a couple of years of that I tried the next and last alternative - I installed Windows 7 via BootCamp.
BootCamp is Apple's software that comes on a Mac that will let you partition your hard drive and install Windows on your computer. One of the major flaws with this option is that you can only have your Mac operating system or your Windows operating system running at a time. You can't easily switch back and forth between Mac programs and Windows programs without restarting your computer. Other than the fact that this was really annoying to have to restart my computer, it also made my computer extremely slow! Granted, at this point my laptop was well over 4 years old and I'm sure the hardware in my computer was slowly dying and also not able to handle both operating systems.
After trying all of these alternatives, the fact that my computer was ancient in computer years, and other reason which I will cover in future posts, I decided that it was time for a new computer. It was a shock to many when I told them I was going to go back to a Windows computer instead of a Mac. However, I have had my new HP laptop now for several weeks and I do not regret the change.
Stay tuned for more posts about my analysis between the two operating systems, price comparison of the two, and ultimately the reasons why I decided to make the switch.