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Bunk Camp - Apple Gets It Wrong? 731

Posted by Zonk
from the see-it's-a-clever-twist-of-one-letter dept.
An anonymous reader writes "CNET.com.au has posted a commentary that attempts to cut away the hype surrounding Boot Camp. From the article: 'Boot Camp will do little to coax Windows XP users into switching to Mac OS X. For this to happen, Apple needs to either license out OS X to all users -- not just Mac owners -- or support a true Mac virtualisation application.'"
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Bunk Camp - Apple Gets It Wrong?

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  • FP? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Chode2235 (866375) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:22AM (#15105050)
    I just got the iMac because of bootcamp. Now I will be able to play games (battlefield 2) and run some weird applications that I use. I think the author is missing the point, it is all about weaning users off of windows, not giving them another platform to run windows. I don't boot into windows unless I have to. Hopefullly I have to boot into windows less and less as time goes on.
  • by elrous0 (869638) * on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:23AM (#15105051)
    The reason Apple doesn't want to sell OS X to PC users (aside from the obvious ties with their more lucrative hardware business) is that OS X simply wouldn't be as stable or bulletproof in the PC world as it has been in the Mac world.

    The big secret is that OS X's stability is based largely on the fact that Apple makes all the decisions on hardware configurations and certification for themselves. In the PC world, XP must be built for an infinite number of possible combinations of hardware components--and hence much of its problems with stability, reliability, etc. For Apple to duplicate this would be very difficult, expensive, and would likely produce results no better (and probably even worse) than XP.

    If OS X users want to see the "blue screen of death," just *try* and use an OS that has to be built for an infinite combination of hardware setups, as opposed to a OS built by the same company that makes the hardware.

    -Eric

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:23AM (#15105055)
    Someone on here had posted a link to a company that was working on such a product and it wouldn't suprise me if Apple does the same thing just in time for Vista's launch.
  • by Jim in Buffalo (939861) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:24AM (#15105060)
    That article was written by someone who hasn't been using a Mac lately. Phrases like "I doubt it" and "my Windows machine" are a dead giveaway. Let's hear from someone who knows what he's talking about.
  • Well, obviously. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by KDR_11k (778916) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:24AM (#15105061)
    Sounds right to me. I wouldn't buy a new system that'd end up forcing me to reboot if I want to access the other half of my applications (and the way it is now I wouldn't boot into OSX in first place). Hell, if I wanted dualbooting there's enough Linux distros for every taste and those don't require completely new hardware to run on. Until I can run all of the applications I use on the same OS I'm not switching.
  • Bunk (Score:5, Insightful)

    by pdc (19855) * on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:25AM (#15105062) Homepage
    Apple don't need to get people to switch to Mac OS X; they need to get them to buy Apple's computers.

    Supporting Windows makes it easier for people to decide to try a Mac, because they don't have to worry about losing familiar applications like regedt32 and minesweeper. Apple hopes that they will then discover that they don't need Windows after all.

    See http://www.joelonsoftware.com/articles/fog00000000 52.html [joelonsoftware.com] for a discussion
  • It will however... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by TERdON (862570) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:25AM (#15105070) Homepage
    convince some users that use (or want to use) both (because they're forced to because of software availability etc) to get rid of their PCs. Not having to buy two computers means they can spend more money on the Apple hardware.

    Also, it will be a safe retreat for some one buying a Mac only to find out they didn't like it. Even though you're not totally convinced that you'll like OS X, you always have the possibility to install Windows XP on it instead.
  • by mudbogger (668451) <dlandis AT gmail DOT com> on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:26AM (#15105076)
    FTA:Does OS X really offer any applications that would entice me to purchase a new Mac and put up with the tedium of Boot Camp? I doubt it.

    It's not necessarily the applications that will persuade people. He should look at the ipod -- is that the only mp3 player out there or anywhere close to the cheapest? People want Apple's because of the trend and the way the hardware looks.

  • Re:Bunk (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Tim C (15259) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:27AM (#15105079)
    Apple hopes that they will then discover that they don't need Windows after all.

    And even if they don't decide that, they've still bought a Mac...
  • by AugstWest (79042) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:29AM (#15105096)
    But does Slashdot have to post them all?

    Really, we haven't thought of this here on /.

    We haven't had dozens of threads debating this very topic already.

    Can we please beat this dead horse a little more?
  • by ClosedSource (238333) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:32AM (#15105115)
    Apple isn't in the OS X business, they are in the computer hardware business. If somebody buys an Apple instead of a Dell so they can run an occasional Mac application, Boot Camp is a success.

    Of course, many people want to see Windows market share decrease, but that's their agenda, not Apple's.
  • Re:Bunk (Score:3, Insightful)

    by waif69 (322360) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:33AM (#15105119) Journal
    Apple is first and foremost a hardware company, they just happen to have a well designed stable OS. Design is something that Apple is known for and they do know how to make good looking machines for their time. No big PC manufacturer does that as well. Boot Camp is for getting people to buy a mac and then find out that if they use OS X more than XP, they will have greater stability without having to give up their precious games or legacy apps that won't run on or be ported to OS X or flavor of *nix.
  • Missing the point (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Wellington Grey (942717) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:34AM (#15105121) Homepage Journal
    I think he misses the fact that some people want to move to OS X but are held back by one must-have application. Boot camp is perfect for these people. My mom, for example, really wants to switch to apple after I let her use my ibook, but she has one program that she needs to occasionally use for work that holds her back. Now she can switch, no problems.

    -Grey [wellingtongrey.net]
  • by The Warlock (701535) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:34AM (#15105122)
    I love how we always hear "the big secret is Apple has full control of the hardware" even though this "big secret" is "revealed" (usually more than once) every goddamn time an OSX article gets posted.

    (sidenote: my FreeBSD install is pretty fucking stable on commodity PC hardware, why wouldn't OSX be?)
  • by rob1980 (941751) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:34AM (#15105124)
    If OS X users want to see the "blue screen of death," just *try* and use an OS that has to be built for an infinite combination of hardware setups, as opposed to a OS built by the same company that makes the hardware.

    Linux users don't seem to have this problem.
  • Re:FP? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ReluctantRefactorer (223101) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:34AM (#15105125)
    It seems to me that if you play PC games a lot, you'll be booting into Windows more and more as time goes on, since what incentive is there to port PC games to OS X if you can run the PC version so easily on the Mac via BootCamp?

    If BootCamp takes off, I predict the already small Mac-native games market will wither even further.
  • Re:FP? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:34AM (#15105129)
    Hopefullly I have to boot into windows less and less as time goes on.

    But what's the mechanism by which that happens? Instead of demanding games that run on Mac and effectively being part of an untapped market, you've conceded that people who really want to play games will get dual boot and run them under Windows. That's hardly a strategy aimed at bringing more games ton the Mac.

    A more reasonable expectation is that as time goes on you'll have to boot into Windows more and more, because its share of the market is boosted even further by dual booters. I doubt this is only true of games either.
  • No hardware lockin (Score:3, Insightful)

    by jridley (9305) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:37AM (#15105146)
    I was just arguing with a friend who happens to be an Apple employee about this. I was toying with the idea of building an OS X x86 compatible PC using the HCL on sourceforge. He said that by doing this I was stealing from his livelihood.

    I said "No, I'm perfectly willing to buy OS X. Put it in the stores and I'll pay for it. Keep it locked to hardware and you won't see a dime from me. APPLE is stealing from your livelihood by not selling me what I want."

    I don't want to buy hardware. I have hardware. I want my hardware to be fungible and able to run any OS I care to put on it this week. I want to be able to choose what I want from the vast variety of what's available, and not have to choose from just what Apple thinks will satisfy me. I'm not going to buy hardware that's priced above market for no reason that I care about (I don't care how pretty it looks, and I don't care about some (mythical, as far as I can tell) higher level of reliability. I just want to run the software and OS that I decide to run.

    It's sometimes said that PC users buy machines to run applications; Apple users buy machines to run the OS. I think that Apple is afraid to put the OS on the market standalone, because in lieu of hardware sales income, they would be charging more than MS charges for Windows, and they'd draw comparisons.

    That seems fine to me. It is a better OS, so it's OK for it to cost more.

    Apple has to some extent maintained the "ease of use" paradigm in the same way that GUIs are easy to use; they restrict choice. If you give people less choice, they are less confused. If they want to enter the larger market, they need to figure out how to continue to deliver their historic strengths while moving into a position of giving the users the wider variety of choices that they are used to in other OSs.
  • by Shimatta1 (257977) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:39AM (#15105162)
    The major premise of the article is rather flawed; Boot Camp wasn't about "luring" in Windows users. Most of those users don't have a choice (e.g. work restrictions) or don't realize that an OS doesn't have to be unstable and/or vulnerable; they think that it's "just the way it is".

    What Boot Camp does is remove the barrier to adoption. There are a number of Windows users who would like to switch, but need access to Software X or don't want to give up Game Y, and don't want to maintain two separate computers for those tasks. Now, they don't have to. Sure, rebooting is a pain, but for someone who wants to, say, use their MacBook Pro as a windows machine at work, and as a mac at home, well, they can do that easily enough.

    Sure, Virtualization would be better, and I've heard (rumors, rumors, mind you) that it's coming. But Boot Camp, by removing the barrier to switching, is a very good transition state, and an acceptable end state, if Apple chose to leave it at that.

    The blue Shimatta1 needs food, badly.
  • wrong.com.com.com (Score:5, Insightful)

    by clevershark (130296) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:41AM (#15105175) Homepage
    Let's remember some of the other things that CNET (the .com.com.com people) thought were "sure things" back in the day -- portals, push (think Pointcast), the Thin Client, etc. For people who only cover tech they're remarkably clueless of the world outside of wintel (and, more often than not, inside of it as well).
  • Re:FP? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by twistedsymphony (956982) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:42AM (#15105182) Homepage
    Agreed... with boot camp out now I'm considering getting a Mac as my next machine.

    I also dis-agree that this would make the mac game library smaller. Sure for a while you'll have Mac users booting into Windows for games and windows users running their OS on Mac hardware. But the reason we don't see games on Mac is because the OS's user base is so much smaller then windows. The only thing it would take to get more games onto OSX is more users... and stuff like this can only help to increase the user base. If the market has a choice of OSs and they lean towards OSX software when they have a choice of getting it for either. Games will follow because they just go to the lowest common denominator. Heck just look at the console market, PS2 gets EVERYTHING simply because it has the biggest userbase, it's certainly not the best in any other category.
  • by Antimatter3009 (886953) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:44AM (#15105200)
    Well then you're not who they're targeting. If you see yourself buying a Mac and then running half of your applications in Windows, then yes, Boot Camp is useless. But a lot of people find OSX to be attractive and would love to use it primarily, but cannot be without a few critical apps that they use every so often (games are the most obvious). Those are the people that Boot Camp was created for, because now they can make the switch and not lose anything.
  • "You can't seriously believe that."

    You can if you're a blinded zealot.
  • Re:FP? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by dslauson (914147) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:47AM (#15105224) Journal
    As long as you're buying their hardware, Apple doesn't care what OS you're running.
  • Re:FP? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by fistfullast33l (819270) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:52AM (#15105255) Homepage Journal
    what incentive is there to port PC games to OS X if you can run the PC version so easily on the Mac via BootCamp?

    This is definitely a slippery slope, but I think Apple still has the upper hand. They have shown in the past that they definitely are not willing to compromise just to make their users happy in the short run. They also are willing to drop support of a product just to get users to move to a newer version. Microsoft is just starting to learn this trick, but no one does it better than Apple. This is why there are still more PC's with Windows 98 installed than XP and very few Macs with OS9 installed than OSX. I think they'll wait a few months/years to get their sales up, and then cut out the rug and say, we don't support Windows any longer on our hardware. It's a very risky play but I wouldn't put it past Apple to do this.

  • by Todd Knarr (15451) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:53AM (#15105266) Homepage

    I think CNet's coming to the wrong conclusions. Firstly, Apple's never going to license OSX on anything but Mac hardware. Control of the hardware's what gives Apple the ability to keep OSX stable and easy to install, they aren't going to give that up. What they've done with Mac-on-Intel and Boot Camp, though, is made buying Apple hardware safe for Windows users: whether you like OSX or not, you will be able to run Windows on your Intel-based Mac. Boot Camp isn't directly intended to let people dual-boot, it's intended as a warm fuzzy "Look, if OSX isn't for you you haven't wasted the price of that nice shiny hardware you bought.".

    I think Apple fully intends to have good PC virtualization software as well. Intel hardware will make that easier. At that point they've got an attractive path to migrating people off Windows. They'll be able to say "If you buy a Mac with OSX, you can still run all your Windows software as well as you could on your Windows machine. If it turns out you've got one or two programs (like games) that won't run under the virtualization software, you can dual-boot into Windows if you have to. And if OSX just plain won't work for you, you can just wipe it and run Windows all the time and still have the shiny Mac hardware for people to drool over. If you're buying new hardware anyway, how can you go wrong?".

  • Re:FP? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by samkass (174571) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:55AM (#15105281) Homepage Journal
    Here's [icculus.org] the best analysis I've seen of it so far, written by Ryan Gordon, who's done a zillion Mac and Linux ports of games.

    I personally don't think Boot Camp changes the economic equation at all yet. When it comes out of beta and if users are willing to buy a $150 "software dongle for games" (WinXP), then maybe Mac ports will start declining in revenue. On the other hand, if Apple can double or triple their market share by taking away the fear of switching, maybe we'll see more.
  • Wrong premise. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by danwesnor (896499) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:57AM (#15105291)
    Apple doesn't want you to buy OS X. They want you to buy hardware. If Apple was trying to sell software, they would have switched over to PCs 15 years ago.
  • by hcdejong (561314) <hobbes.xmsnet@nl> on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @09:57AM (#15105298)
    Linux has one advantage: many of its developers work for free. Apple would have to pay an army of developers to replicate this effort (mainly to write and test drivers for every piece of obscure hardware under the sun). This'll cost a boatload of money, and will require a Microsoft-sized organisation. Apple simply isn't big enough to pull this off.

    Also, Apple will have to do this *before* they start selling the OS to the 'generic PC' market. People will expect OSX Generic to 'just work' like it does on Apple's own computers.
  • by BenDalton (573850) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @10:00AM (#15105320) Homepage

    Apple wasn't trying to woo over millions of Windows users to the Mac platform with Boot Camp. Apple's release of Boot Camp serves three purposes for them:

    1. By releasing Boot Camp now, and gaining some mainstream press regarding Windows on Mac hardware, Apple has become a thought in the minds of those people who were considering a new PC purchase in the future. Mindshare. This becomes increasingly important if you believe some of the recent rumors stating that Apple will include virtualization software in the next major OS release.
    2. By releasing Boot Camp now as a Beta release, Apple feeds the needs and wants of their savvy early adopters. This core group will continue to evangelize for Apple and the new Intel-based hardware. Again, this release appeals to the tinkerer group and will convince a nice small chunk of extra savvy PC users who have considered a Mac recently. This group is small. But, it is also the group that fixes the entire neighborhood's computers. They are the tech advisors.
    3. With people actually running Windows on Mac hardware, Apple gains tons of information and feedback. Assuming Apple is planning on including virtualization support in 10.5, this allows them to sure up any driver issues, software support issues, orperformance issues before they make it a core, included part of their OS.

    All in all, this move is a VERY intelligent one from Apple. They waited until people had the new Macs in their hands and got a feel for the performance of the hardware/OS combo, and then provided an extra feature. Now with the media buzz and the savvy user community, 10.5 may be a very significant draw for those who don't want to deal with Vista.

    Just my 2 cents.
  • by suv4x4 (956391) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @10:01AM (#15105330)
    "Linux runs on tons more platforms and configurations than Windows does, and it has never had a problem with stability as far as I'm aware. The biggest problem with Linux is drivers"

    So what you just said is despite drivers causing the stability issues in Windows, Linux doesn't have that problem, since it doesn't have a lot of drivers to run it with in first place.

    Good point...
  • by WinterSolstice (223271) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @10:02AM (#15105339)
    Actually, I disagree.

    The biggest problem with Linux is not drivers, but software. Linux is simply a pain in the butt to use. I have on my desk at work right now three machines - a PPC Mac Mini, an Intel MacBook Pro, and an IBM T42 (running Fedora core 4) - I was able to get all of my work applications running on the Mini with no issues at all. I was able to get all but 2 applications running on my MacBook with no issues ( the remaining two are driving me nuts ), however, I was only able to 2 of my apps running on Linux. I am not a total linux novice (indeed, I admin Solaris and Linux servers, and I have run Linux since Corel, Caldera, and RedHat 6.x). Unfortunately, the only apps I could get to work were the easy ones - SAP GUI and OO.o. Those are fairly obvious... the whole rest of my stuff requires a windows virtualization in order to run.

    Dual-booting Windows/OSX will ease the transition between OSs as much as dual-booting Windows/Linux does - but I think that argument is already obvious. The main difference is this: Apple is a *hardware* company. IBM would be an idiot to only sell OS/2 on IBM hardware, and Apple has chosen to let you run anything you want on Apple hardware. They probably don't care very much if you run OSX or Windows, just so long as you run it on APPLE hardware.

    As for stability - I think Apple's OSX is stable for the same reason that AIX, Solaris, and VMS are stable - well written code for a well known hardware platform. I have always disagreed with the 'PC mentality' that you should run anything on anything. It's neat and all to hack Linux onto your machine of choice, but aside from the 'because it's there' factor, there is no reason to. If anything, MS should be desperately trying to produce a machine that runs Windows with perfect stability - like, say, an XBOX or something. Something that they can hold up and say will never crash, never have viruses, etc. Probably something with DRM built into the hardware, optimized for displaying blue ( just kidding :) ), and widely toted to be 'linux proof'. They would sell quite a lot of them if they could convince the RIAA/MPAA/etc that they had created the perfect hacker-proof machine for home users. Heck, I might even buy one. All they would really need to do is put the OS on firmware, lock the el torito boot extension, prevent non-signed binaries from even executing, and require you to subscribe to Live for firmware updates. Perhaps even simply prohibit firmware updates at all - just say "This machine runs Windows x". Have a trade-up for the next version. If the machine actually *worked* people would gladly pay XBox 360 prices for it, then do it again just to run the next version. Heck, why isn't there MS Office for XBox 360? Is someone asleep at the wheel there? How perfect would that be? I could just walk into Target, then walk out with a machine that would (out of the box) plug into a monitor (DVI), plug into a TV, handle any of the modern USB peripherals, play DVDs, surf the web, and do 90% of the 'work' stuff without ever having a virus? Considering the popularity of Live CDs I suspect that a Windows Office 360 Live CD for the Xbox 360 would be a huge hit. Of course, you'd need to subscribe to Live or something for backups - but hey, even better, right?

    -WS
  • Re:Bunk (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Angostura (703910) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @10:07AM (#15105371)
    You're not factoring in the applications.

    I originally bought a Mac because I wanted to tinker with Unix and because I wanted to edit family movies and burn to DVD.

    The iLife bundle, including iPhoto, Garageband and iWeb are bundled with new Macs and make the machine a nifty appliance. Oh, and it runs a nicer version of Office than Windows (bar Outlook).

    So there is plenty to give tinkerers instant gratification.

    Compare that with setting up a dual boot Linux machine. I did that once, to play with. Never actually did anything with it though since I didn't have the time to get it properly configured.
  • Re:FP? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by mdwh2 (535323) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @10:10AM (#15105392) Journal
    They also are willing to drop support of a product just to get users to move to a newer version. Microsoft is just starting to learn this trick, but no one does it better than Apple. This is why there are still more PC's with Windows 98 installed than XP and very few Macs with OS9 installed than OSX.

    I suspect that that's more to do with the fact the popularity of Macs has increased significantly since the release of OS X, where as the popularity of Windows 98 versus XP was relatively constant. The extra OS X Macs probably weren't people upgrading from MacOS 9.

    I think they'll wait a few months/years to get their sales up, and then cut out the rug and say, we don't support Windows any longer on our hardware. It's a very risky play but I wouldn't put it past Apple to do this.

    Possibly, but I don't think it's comparable. They've only done the jumps like 68k to PPC and MacOS to MacOS X by maintaining backwards compatibility. If they just remove support for Windows, without offering any alternative, then people may not be happy at no longer being able to run all those Windows applications and games they have.
  • Re:Bunk (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @10:12AM (#15105401)
    ... but if they do, they are likely to buy another one, three to five years down the road - and maybe a notebook to go with their desktop Mac, or vice versa.
  • Windows on well made hardware, and with good drivers, is extremely stable. ...as long as you don't connect to the internet, or run any apps on it, or use any devices (even well made ones) that use the same portion of the kernelspace at once.

    These aren't problems you see in Linux and OSX. The difference is that Windows doesn't do a good job of implementing levels of trust. What I don't expect is that they'll be able to bring down my OS, or any portion of it, when they do.

    Further, I expect that drivers written by Microsoft or that are Microsoft certified shouldn't have any compatibility problems. Otherwise, why did they get certified?

    When I plug my MS certified USB storage device into my computer while I also plug in my MS certified USB soundcard, I can expect my sound to stop working, and if I'm very unlucky it may also crash my computer.

    Can I blame Windows for this? Absolutely. All of the devices involved are MS Certified and USB certified, so Windows shouldn't have any trouble sorting these things out. Even if it does, it shouldn't crash altogether. The USB subsystem shouldn't have the privileges to crash the rest of the OS. That's a design flaw.

    This is just a single example that is typical of what you see in Windows, and the logic behind why I say that Windows itself is not stable. There are many, many others.
  • Re:FP? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Tony Hoyle (11698) <tmh@nodomain.org> on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @10:12AM (#15105406) Homepage
    Yeah.. that worked so well for OS/2, let's do it for the mac!

    Oh, wait..
  • Re:FP? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by timster (32400) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @10:13AM (#15105408)
    The mechanism is that more people will have Macs, and perhaps most of them will prefer MacOS, and so they will prefer to run games in MacOS to avoid the hassle of rebooting. Over time they will prefer not to pay for upgrades to Windows if they only play games with it anyway. As this happens they will look for games in the Mac section of the store first, and that will create an economic incentive for Mac games.
  • Re:FP? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mwvdlee (775178) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @10:13AM (#15105412) Homepage
    His misconseptions rely on this single quote from TFA: "Does OS X really offer any applications that would entice me to purchase a new Mac and put up with the tedium of Boot Camp? I doubt it.".
    To many currently Windows-dependant people (which includes me), OS X does indeed offer desirable functionality (which also includes me).

    I'm not planning to upgrade my PC in the near future, but I know I'll atleast checkout the latest Apple offering when that time comes.

    The whole article is based on the idea that people who don't like Mac OS X to begin with, would suddenly like it because of boot-camp. The truth is that this may help users who'd prefer OS X but are bound to Windows for some reason to make the switch gradually.
  • by birge (866103) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @10:18AM (#15105458) Homepage
    You sound like a spoiled child. Apple doesn't owe you the ability to do what you want with their IP, and they have good reasons (elucidated in many other posts) for not wanting to have to support their OS on the infinite number of hardware combinations possible.

    And you betray a infantile understanding of ethics and morality if you think not getting your way is justification for violating somebody else's IP and wishes for their property.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @10:22AM (#15105481)
    Really? For me the thing that attracted me to the Mac wasn't *just* the OS but the package. A dell/hp/compaq/etc.. computer (laptop and desktop) or hardware looks and feels like a computer. Products from Apple look and feel like appliances.

    I really think the Mac is at a different stage of computing than most platforms. It's about making the whole thing work. If OS X came free on a regular dell tower it still wouldn't be on my desk. It might be in a closet as a file server but certainly not on my desk. My Mac is for doing work. I was a Windows/DOS/C64 user for 10 years, then spent 5 as a Linux user - now I'm a Mac user (3-4 years). I've got a job and family now - I don't have time to play with computers and customizing them (like I used to) - I need them to just work. That's why I support thousands of Windows systems from a Mac.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @10:23AM (#15105498)
    Tough Shit. (tm)
  • by sqlrob (173498) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @10:24AM (#15105514)
    IBM couldn't market its way out of a paper bag. The marketing for OS/2 sucked.

    Apple is a marketing company.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @10:28AM (#15105538)
    It's about 'Power Users'. What all of these pundits are missing is that Apple doesn't want all the Windows Users, it can't afford to support that level of computer user. What Apple wants are the power users that are A. capable of installing Windows on Boot Camp and getting it properly configured, B. Capable enough that they aren't going to be calling Apple for Windows support, and C. affluent enough to afford an Apple AND all the little enhancements that they may want with it.

    I know it's a terrible comparison, but the old car analogy works here. Apple doesn't want the Honda CR/V, Ford Escape crowd, they want the Land Rover Discovery, Hummer crowd. People that want more, and are willing to pay for it.

    That whole willing to pay for it thing is a huge part of the deal, and it's a two pronged attack.

    First, they are the demographics that has the cash to spend, but costs the least in incidentals to support. Second, they are also the trendsetters, the people that the bulk of the marketplace follows, and as such become a private army of grass roots marketers. How is that ? When someone that's not the uber tech needs a computer, whom to the ask? the Power User friend of theirs, and they follow that lead...

    It really is that simple, but the industry pundits are so busy reading more into it they cannot see the simple thing right in front of them. Boot Camp isn't about Joe User, it IS about the Slashdot, OSNews, Register reading consumers.

    Proudly posted from a MacBook Pro, yeah, I'm one of them, grassroots marketing, and I pay them for the privelege. pathetic isn't it :-(
  • by Slithe (894946) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @11:05AM (#15105815) Homepage Journal
    There is a program for Linux called Cedega (formerly known as WineX), which is a proprietary fork of Wine, which is an application to run Windows programs under Linux/BSD by translating parts of the Windows and DirectX API to the Linux API. Transgaming, the company supporting Cedega, added Direct3D support, and some other enhancements specifically for gaming, and tries to support the latest releases of Windows games. With this application, Linux gamers, a good chunk of the Linux population (at least I think it is) can play the latest games without dual-booting into Micro$**t Winblow$; unfortunately, there are some catches.

    First, Cedega is NOT open-source (parts of it are released under the Alladin Public License, which is more shared source) and a subscription costs $5 per month (with an initial minimum subscription of 3 months).

    The second problem is that Cedega is trying to support resource intensive applications, so they are constantly changing their supported API to 'optimize' their program. As a result, games that worked with older versions of WineX/Cedega might not work with newer versions, so you may have to install multiple copies to run the games you want.

    The third, and VERY IRRITATING, flaw is that Cedega uses a voting system to determine which games to support. This means that only the popular games (Half Life, WOW, GTA, Elder Scrolls, etc.) will definitely work, and less popular games (Gothic, Gothic II,*insert many games here*) may NEVER work!!

    Anyway, Cedega has some annoying flaws, but its MAIN flaw is that it gives developers a good excuse not to do a native Linux port. They may have heard of Cedega, and they assume that their game will be supported under it, so there is no reason to do a native port.

    Some people, initially, liked the idea of Wine/WineX/Cedega because it would provide gamers with a way to switch to a 'superior' operating system and still be able to play their Windows games, and game developers would, eventually, see that a vast chunk of their market runs Linux, and they would start releasing native ports. Cedega has *NOT* encouraged games; one could argue that it has hampered game development under Linux (see above). Since most Linux computers can run Windows, game developers will still release games under Windows and just suggest that Linux gamers dualboot. Since most Linux users are not as fanatically anti-MS as they claim to be, most of them will boot into Windows to play their games (which I, myself, do). I hear many people on Linux forums say that they only use Windows for gaming or video-editing (or synth music creation).

    Game developers do not want to do more work than is necessary, so they will not do a port if another choice is given. If a Macintosh can run Windows, then game developers will tailor their games to Windows and will not support OSX, "because you can just run Windows for that stuff." As mentioned previously, the MacIntel's ability to run Windows will not attract enough gamers for most game developers to consider OSX as a viable platform, if they have not considered it already.

    In conlusion, Windows is far too entrenched in the desktop market to be displaced by anything; to fight it, one should focus on embedded computers (cell phones/PDAs/etc.) where Windows CE is just one OS among many. If you want to support open gaming, buy a GP2X. http://www.gp2x.com/ [gp2x.com]

    Sorry for this verbose (and mostly off-topic) rant.
  • by WheresMyDingo (659258) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @11:10AM (#15105846)
    "APPLE is stealing from your [an Apple employee's] livelihood by not selling me what I want [Mac OS X for generic PC hardware]."

    In a world where Apple sold you what you want, that friend could likely be out of a job in a few years as Apple starts bleeding like they did in 1997 when they last licensed their OS to third-party manufacturers.

    Imagine someone who wants to run Mac OS X in this hypothetical world. That person can:

    1. Buy a Mac, or
    2. Buy a copy of OS X for generic PC hardware

    In case (1), Apple gets, say, $500 profit. In case (2), Apple gets, say, $100 profit. For Apple to make money in a world like this, you'd think Apple would need people to choose option (2) over option (1) by more than a 5:1 margin. You can speculate on whether that would be a fair bet.

    But what are the costs to Apple that erode that simple 5:1 formula? Here are the two biggies that come to mind:

    • Direct confrontation with Microsoft
    • Supporting OS X on generic PC hardware

    So when you're done with that, what would the bias have to be for Apple to seriously consider it? 10:1?

    There's an excellent blog post by John Gruber at Daringfireball.net entitled "Several Asinine and/or Risky Ideas Regarding Apple's Strategy That Boot Camp Does Not Portend" about this, where I got some of these ideas from.

  • by Agram (721220) <ico.vt@edu> on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @11:14AM (#15105880)
    I think that Apple may be in for a surprise. Yes, there is a lot of propaganda flying around in regards to just about any OS on the market. However, in my experience, many Apple users (at least in the academic communities) who adamantly claim that their OS is supperior have never even bothered running Microsoft platform--they base such claims solely upon the n-hand accounts. Conversely, from this exposure (even if such was for curiosity sakes) we may end-up seeing quite a few switches, but in the opposite direction. I have personally seen only a few of those, but what made them so powerful for me was the sheer ignorance and amazement that Microsoft's OS is not nearly as bad as the propaganda makes it into (which ultimately makes such an experience positive no matter what, as the expectations are as low as they get). Now, if you are talking about the company's practices, that's a whole another story (which sadly in this case has little or no bearing on the outcome)...
  • Re:FP? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Duncan3 (10537) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @11:18AM (#15105912) Homepage
    Reality check...

    Only corporations and people without a teenage relative pay for Windows.

    Always has been that way, always will.
  • Re:FP? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by lowrydr310 (830514) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @11:31AM (#15106014)
    How many of those dual-boot users running Windows will actually be running licensed versions?
  • Re:FP? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by alcmaeon (684971) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @12:07PM (#15106330)
    Frankly, I think computer gaming is going the way of the dodo. Consoles are killing the computer gaming market. There are a few games that can be played better on a computer (strategy games come to mind) but most games can be played just as well on a console and the limited controllers in most cases force the programmers to be more creative and make games with better gaming experiences.

    Graphics are theoretically much better on a computer than on the consoles, but I have been astounded with the qualilty of games on PS2, xbox, and GameCube. I never cease to be surprised how good games can look on these consoles that have a fraction of the graphics horsepower of my PC.

    Then there is the fact that when I have a game that looks really good on the PC, it still suks because it is such a lousy play.

    The benefit to Apple of dual-booting XP and OSX is that it manages perceptiions. People don't want to buy a Mac and get stuck nto being able to play their games, or use a theoretical piece of "essential" software. I suspect that for the vast majority of the users, this is just a perception, but now Apple can say "Hey, XP sucks, but if you really, really need it, you can run it on our hardware." Then people buy a Mac, boot XP a couple of times because it is cool, and then never boot it again.

    in my view, an Apple brand monitor with component inputs for hooking up a game console would be more useful than XP dual booting for "Mac gaming."

  • Re:FP? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by 99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @12:34PM (#15106550)

    I don't see what's to prefer about OS X if you're already familiar or prepared to use XP for playing games.

    Hmm, lets see, I can buy the Windows version, plus a copy of Windows, plus go through a complex install process, and shut down the 15 applications I always have running and reboot to play a game, or I can buy the mac version and just run it. Yeah, I certainly see no reason to go with the latter.

    ...but it blows for gaming if for no other reason than the dearth of titles compared to Windows.

    Whooosh! That was the sound of the previous poster's point whizzing over your head. Will the market demand more games on OS X? Your reasoning, no because there aren't enough games on OS X.

    Doubly so because a lot of older titles will be PPC and must be emulated.

    Which will make no difference within a year when said emulation is faster on current hardware than it was native on old hardware.

    But more importantly, anyone intent on playing games would never buy the current Intel Macs.

    I see, so that is why no one ports games to OS X now. No one would who is interested in games would buy a mac. ...Except there is a market, and it is quite profitable. Believe it or not, most game sales are to casual gamers, who own a handful of titles, not to "extreme gamers" who live for games. They just want to pick out something fun, and being native for OS X is a big plus if they have a mac. The more people have macs, the bigger this market gets and the more games it will get. Thus, if bootcamp increases the adoption of Macs, more games will come to the platform, but since such a tiny market is willing to go to the expense and time of using it just for games, it probably won't affect the game market otherwise.

    Both the MacBook and the Mac Mini (the only Intel based systems thus far) have low-end / mobile GPUs and the CPUs are hardly cutting edge.

    And what percentage of regular PC users that buy games have "cutting edge" graphics cards? My guess is somewhere around .5%. Sorry, but as much as you'd like to think otherwise, hardcore gamers are not a big market segment.

  • Wrong conclusions (Score:2, Insightful)

    by planetfinder (879742) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @12:34PM (#15106552)
    This guy is arguing his case from the point of view that there is no difference in quality between OS X and Win XP. It suggests that he's really never used OS X for a long enough period of time to know what he's talking about.

    1. " I think he's missed the boat on this one, and here's why. Cooper assumes that the existence of Boot Camp alone will be enough to entice significant numbers of Windows XP-based PC users to shell out a few grand for a new Mac -- now that's wishful thinking! In my opinion, not many will even bother."

    Wrong.
    Most Mac's don't cost a few grand so this guy is starting out his discussion/rant with a deliberate gross misrepresentation.

    2. "Dual booting Windows XP and Mac OS X through Boot Camp is superfluous, as you're forced to reboot each time you switch between operating systems, and the Windows XP partition can't read any of the files you've saved under your Mac OS X partition. "

    OS X offers you a more secure environment and that security is potentially compromised when both operating systems run concurrently.

    3. "So what's the point of it, when I could just stick with my current Windows XP-based PC and not worry about Mac OS X altogether? Does OS X really offer any applications that would entice me to purchase a new Mac and put up with the tedium of Boot Camp? I doubt it."

    The short answer is that OS X is better. OS X offers a nicer more stable and better considered work environment within which to run your applications. In my experience you would have to use OS X for a while to really appreciate how that improves your experience with every application that you do use. One problem is that takes a while for your work habits to change in order to really take advantage of and appreciate the improved environment that OS X offers.

    4. "Rather than enticing existing Windows XP users to switch, Boot Camp will be primarily attractive to current OS X users that are lusting after certain Windows XP applications, such as games. This makes sense -- they're already accustomed to performing most tasks on OS X, and only need to switch over to Windows when they feel the urge to game."

    Wrong.
    Mac users aren't lusting after XP applications. They already own a cheap PC to play games and to run a those few applications in an insecure Windows environment that are not available on a Mac. Now Mac owners will be replacing their PC's with a second inexpensive Mac. With that replacement they will have a second computer that works no matter what Win XP did to their Windows partition when they installed service pack 2.

    5. "Ultimately, with Boot Camp, Apple is only helping Microsoft sell more copies of Windows XP. How sweet of them."

    See item 4.

    6. "If Apple wants a significant number of users to sample OS X, Boot Camp just won't cut it. Instead, it's going to have to get off the fence and start selling OS X to PC users, rather than restricting it to the Mac. I don't see any valid reason why Apple isn't doing this, as it would dramatically increase its revenue and market penetration. Is Apple not confident that it can compete with PC vendors based on hardware design alone, should users have the ability to run OS X on a standard Dell or HP machine?"

    Wrong.
    This assertion ignores the fact that Mac's and their operating systems have better integration, better reliability, and better support. When you call Apple support with a software problem they usually don't tell you that they can't help you with your problem because its a hardware problem and visa versa. Its Apple hardware and software and Apple usually can help you for a reasonable price. Running OS X on cheap generic hardware will disallow real support of the hardware software combination and will result in a much wider variation in the quality of experience of using OS X. Effectively Apple would lose much of their quality control.

    7. "However, if Cooper's right about anything, it's that "folks are not clamouring for Windows; they're clamouring to run Windows applicat
  • Re:FP? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by 99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @01:44PM (#15107112)

    Utter bullshit. By complex install process you mean, hit setup, choose a folder and hit next a few times. Without reboots. Most games run just fine with other apps going, assuming you have the memory for doing that. My system runs games just fine even with apps like Azureus running in the background.

    You're an idiot. If I'm running OS X, and have 15 applications open it is a huge pain in the ass to shutdown all my apps and reboot into Windows to play a game. If you actually bothered to read my previous post you'd see I wasn't talking about running Windows all the time on an Apple machine because basically no one wants to do that. Installing a second OS in dual boot configuration, even with bootcamp is beyond the abilities of the average user, who can't even install Windows in the first place. Thus, the number of people who will be using it, compared to the total market is insignificant.

    People don't buy systems hoping that some day at some unspecified point in the future, the platform will become popular enough to make it useful for the reason they bought it for in the first place.

    You're still an idiot. People who want to play games generally buy a console. People who buy a mac want to do general purpose computing. They may want to play games as part of that, but to claim a significant portion of the market would buy any sort of computer just to play games is absurd.

    As for most PCs, I'd say anyone intent on even casual gaming would choose something considerably more powerful than anything you'd see in a MacBook or Mini.

    I'd say you're full of shit. The average PC used to play games today has a 1.2 Ghz processor and a 16 mb graphics card. That is the middle of the road machine of the average game buyer. Your perception of what the market has is so skewed by your "gamer" point of view that you can't grasp that you are not the market. Most people just don't blow $500 on a new graphics card every year. They buy a new computer with fairly cheap graphics capabilities every three years and give their current one to their kids. The market is made up of 1-5 year old machines. The average brand new computer purchased today and used to play games has a 64 mb card and less than 5% of machines purchased have more than 128mb according to numbers compiled by several game development programs at major universities. I just can't stress this enough, but you have no clue what the market looks like. Game developers do.

  • by GoatPigSheep (525460) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @02:14PM (#15107372) Homepage Journal
    It sounds like OS X might not be for you. If you want a free and open OS that is not tied to specific hardware and that lets you use whatever UI you want to get your work down, then stick with Linux, FreeBSD, or whatever else floats your boat.

    If you want a stable and mature OS that is not completely open, made to be used with specific hardware, but more open and easily integrated with free software than windows, then get OS X. Generally, and this is still as true now as it was before, apple computers are designed with a foccuss on multimedia content creation. It is only recently with the advent of OS X that the geek crowd as really jumped on the apple bandwagon as well. Apple's pro product lines are aimed at people who want a computer that is stable and easy to support, and as a result they are more restrictive when it comes to hardware choice.

    As someone who has done a lot of hardware troubleshooting, Apple computers are much easier to deal with due to the fact that they can be narrowed down to specific models. A bit of searching on the web for people who have had similar issues with the same model can mean that diagnosing problems can take very little time. Compared to the PC world where an infinite amount of components can be mixed, diagnosing problems can take an order of magnitude longer and be much more expensive.

    To top it off, Macs have excellent RESALE VALUE, so if you get one and don't like it, it would be very easy to sell it off.
  • Re:FP? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by porcupine8 (816071) on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @02:46PM (#15107602) Journal
    Until a year or two ago, whenever a website didn't work in Firefox, if you complained you'd get something from the webmaster saying to use IE for that site.

    Now that 10-15% of internet users are using Firefox, suddenly more and more sites are actually making their sites compatible with multiple browsers - the same ones that a year ago were telling you to fire up IE to see their site.

    Yes, I still have IE, and I could use it to view a site that won't open in Firefox or Safari - but I don't want to. Webmasters have realized that we don't want to use IE, and now that there are enough of us to make a dent in their traffic, they are no longer telling us that we must do something we don't want to do in order to load their site. Because 9 times out of 10, I just won't use the site.

    I see something similar happening in the next couple of years for Macs. People will buy them because they have the option of booting into Windows. But once they get hooked on OS X, they won't want to use Windows if they don't have to. If something requires them to boot into windows, they'll whine about it and in some cases not buy the software if there's something comparable available that doesn't require rebooting. If Mac marketshare can make it above 10%, that's a big enough chunk of users that companies won't want to risk chasing them away by making them do annoying things like reboot to use their software. Even games - I'm sure that there will be people who will say "This better be a really fucking amazing game if I'm gonna boot into Windows for it."

  • by jcr (53032) <jcr&mac,com> on Tuesday April 11, 2006 @08:36PM (#15110170) Journal
    They also happen to have an excellent piece of software that I do want. But they won't sell it to me.

    Sure they will, they just won't do it under your terms. That doesn't entitle you to steal it, sunshine.

    -jcr
  • Re:FP? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by gig (78408) on Friday April 14, 2006 @04:13PM (#15132326)
    > I think they'll wait a few months/years to get their sales up, and then cut out the rug and say,
    > we don't support Windows any longer on our hardware.

    I think it is much more likely that they will fully support Windows XP for quite some time but won't support Vista. They can cannibalize XP, but compete with Vista. It is possible for Apple to create a Mac OS X v10.5 Leopard that is better at running Windows XP applications than Windows Vista is.

    I think what Apple will do over the next few years with Intel/Windows is just like what they did in a few years ago with PowerPC/Mac OS Classic. From their perspective, it is just another legacy system to adopt like a library so you can run the applications.

    The biggest drag about switching from Windows to Mac can be upgrading all of your applications all at once. If you can buy a Mac and keep running all of your old apps, then you can upgrade or replace each application at the end of its upgrade cycle, for example replacing Photoshop v9 for Windows with Photoshop v10 for Mac when v10 is released instead of buying v9 for Mac in between. Also it can take about a year for someone to find an upgrade or replacement app for every last little thing as they switch their primary environment from Windows to Mac and if they can keep running their old apps during that time it is much easier on them.

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