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New to Mac iOS

how about apps compatibility? hardware?

10:56 pm on May 9, 2014 (gmt 0)

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I'm finally getting close to buying a new laptop, and relatively soon, a desktop, too.
All is going towards MacBook Pro 15", and iMac 27".

I'm on Windows 7 now, with mail on Exchange server, using MS Office, and Adobe CS3.

I thought about:

- get Office for Mac,
- Adobe is subscription based now anyway, or even test some other apps for webmasters,
- Get something like Parallels or VMware so I can still have Windows environment on hand.

Would the above three steps be my best option, or you would do it in some other way?

Some hardware questions:
- Would 16GB be kind of standard for Mac computers today, or 8GB is just fine (I'm on Windows 4GB with no trouble)? I don't do any super graphic work.
- Any advice about CPU configuration (overkill vs. must)?
- Flash drive advice for iMac? I see it's the only option for laptops anyway. I do have Windows Home Server for files.
- Anything else? I know the extended warranty is something many do.

11:41 pm on May 9, 2014 (gmt 0)

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smallcompany, those first three steps are spot on.

Also, if you are not doing any graphics or video editing, 16GB would really be unnecessary. If you have a lot of programs open at the same time, you will appreciate more RAM. Unless there is a nominal difference in price, you should be fine with 8GB.

Regarding CPU, the above applies as well. You may not need horsepower without photo or video editing.

Whenever you can, go for the flash drive. The speed is incredible.

As far as the extended warranty, I have had dozens of Macs since 1984 of pretty much all configurations and I have never had one die. Never had to replace any monitors or drives either. I may be incredibly fortunate. YMMV
12:04 am on May 10, 2014 (gmt 0)

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I used Windows since 3.1, switched to Mac 4 or 5 years ago so I am sort of familiar with the questions. I do have Office for Mac but personally prefer OpenOffice, (OK, I preferred it on Windows also.) These are personal preferences, the work you need to do will dictate your best choice. More RAM is always nice, not needed if you aren't working with audio video extensively, and easy enough to add later if you find a need for it.

I set up Windows with Parallels, but they update too often and you need to buy a new version every 6 - 8 months or so. I have VMWare, have not spent the time to set it up. Now I use Windows so infrequently, it hardly matters. I can open and edit all my old files in Mac, no compatibility issues that I've seen. I still have Windows installed, but it is more a repository of legacy apps for specific uses than something I am relying on. I still have a desktop and laptop with Windows, need to remember to fire them up for updates.

If the little extra cost is not a barrier, look at the solid state drives for the laptop, We have an older 15" MBPro without SS and a newer 13" I picked up this year with SS and it is amazingly faster, no fans and heat issue while you're running - only thing I didn't like was the complete switch to USB3 that precluded the use of my favorite wireless laptop mouse. But startup and shutdown is like 1 second vs. my older systems without ss. Amazing battery life and I love the Retina display.

We have both 21" and 27" iMacs, they are the workhorses. I don't care for the huge display, prefer the 21". I did not purchase extended warranty with any Mac. Even without it, their customer service is mindblowing compared to issues I had on the other OS. My hard drive failed less than a year after I bought the 21" and I ran out and got a replacement drive and replaced it. The Time Machine backups meant getting it back in order was under 36 hours, including shopping for a drive. Months later I got an email from Apple telling me about a known issue with that model's drive. I replied that I had noticed and replaced it. They wrote back for me to scan receipts and with that documentation they paid me for parts and labor, well aware that I did it myself.

I realize I'm not answering every question, there are lots of others here with probably much more experience who will be right up to let you know their own experiences and advice.