Not sheepish, but individ-ewe-al (livredor) wrote,
Not sheepish, but individ-ewe-al
livredor

Refighting the OS wars

So compilerbitch has convinced me that my life would be better if I finally caved and got a laptop. The question is what to get. If you have any views on the subject, please comment with them; I reckon I can get better information from the collective wisdom of my flist than from someone who's trying to sell me stuff.

My requirements: reliable; not unreasonably expensive; able to run a wide range of software; not too difficult to use; wireless card and preferably normal modem as well; ability to transfer data between machines easily; compatible with the rest of the world (especially work-wise, but in general too); CD rewriter and DVD player would be nice; ability to play games, mostly of the retro kind. I don't really care about the latest ultra-fast processor, or flashy high-res graphics, or fantastically lightweight.

I need to choose an OS, and a make of processor etc, and whether I should look for something second hand or buy new, and once I've made the decision, where is a good place to get it. And I realize I'm basically inviting a huge fight here, but I think I might find it informative, so feel free.

Basic windows machine
+ Cheap
+ Usable straight out of the box
+ I already have software such as MS Office, and would normally get an OS bundled with the machine
+ Familiarity with the Windows way of doing stuff
+ Straightforward compatibility with any peripherals
+ Can continue using all the useful apps I rely on
+ Will play all the games I want
- This kind of laziness is exactly what makes Microsoft so successful despite making crap products!

Mac
+ Pretty!
+ I think the lab at the Karolinska are basically Mac people
+ Robust and reliable (is this true, or a false impression I've picked up?)
+ Good security
+ Usable straight out of the box
+ User friendly even if it's different from what I'm used to
- Expensive
- Not many games available
- May have hassle with any peripherals and add-ons
- Would probably have to buy Office for Mac, making it even more expensive
- Most of the software I rely on beyond the basic Office suite would probably not be available
- Possible annoying incompatibilities with the PC-using world

Linux machine
+ Reliable, secure, non-buggy
+ Morally good
+ In theory, OS and software should be free
+ I would feel good about myself if I learnt to use Linux
+ In theory, vastly more options available to configure machine to suit my requirements exactly and do whatever I want to do
- Steep learning curve
- Guaranteed hassle for pretty much anything I'd want to do
- Software is available but I don't know where to find it
- Hard to find a machine that doesn't have a bundled OS
- Incompatibility with the PC-using world, probable incompatibility with my current Windows desktop too eg inability to read my old proprietary format files
- For practical purposes, no gaming.

Dual partition machine
+ In theory, most of the advantages of both Windows and Linux
- Even more difficult to set up than a pure Linux arrangement
- More to go wrong
Tags: rfh
Subscribe

  • in corpore sano

    I've been meaning to post some noodling on the topic of exercise for while; the post is expanded from a comment I made to a friends locked post chez…

  • Reinventing myself

    I'm coming to the conclusion that I need a change of style. Various things have triggered this: a friend commenting that I dress "conservatively",…

  • Change your LJ password!

    I have seen pretty good evidence that a bad actor has all the logins and password details from LiveJournal, including old, deactivated passwords and…

  • Post a new comment

    Error

    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.
  • 22 comments

  • in corpore sano

    I've been meaning to post some noodling on the topic of exercise for while; the post is expanded from a comment I made to a friends locked post chez…

  • Reinventing myself

    I'm coming to the conclusion that I need a change of style. Various things have triggered this: a friend commenting that I dress "conservatively",…

  • Change your LJ password!

    I have seen pretty good evidence that a bad actor has all the logins and password details from LiveJournal, including old, deactivated passwords and…