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Switcher Hangout The place for switchers to discuss their new machines, and how to work with OS X. General support can be had here for newbie stuff, like "How do I restart my new iMac?" :)

New Switcher: First Impressions


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SweetCosmicPope

 
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Member Since: Dec 16, 2009
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Mac Specs: Late 2009 Macbook Pro 2.26, 160gb HD, 2gb RAM, OSX 10.6; Emac 1.42ghz 80gb HD 2gb RAM OSX 10.5

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Let me first say that I am a novice mac user, however, I do have a little experience. My first experience with mac was one of my old college friends showing me how to do video editing on his e-mac. Since, I've had an interest in macs, and I'd always preferred to use the mac lab, as opposed to the PC lab at school.

Now, we have two windows towers and a windows laptop at home (wife wanted a mac, but at the time we couldn't afford it), and I'd been wanting a macbook pro. I've been lurking on here for quite some time, now, and researching, as well as playing with the laptops at the apple store, trying to get a feel for the OS.

None of that had me prepared, however. I quickly realized after opening my laptop that the computers at school and in the store were loaded with junk and bloated horribly. That's the only explanation I have for my new laptop running so much more smoother and quickly. It is literally blazingly fast, and easily outpaces my built up HTPC.

Once I opened up the machine, I was given a much more warm welcome than windows ever gave me, with the beautiful opening animation. The setup was lightning fast. Took about 5 minutes, including registration, to setup the machine, which would have taken about an hour in windows. Wireless setup was as easy as selecting my router and typing in the password. Much easier than having to screw around with my settings like I did/do on the windows laptop.

I haven't gotten to play around with the programs or anything too much, because I didn't get it setup until about 11 last night, but I will say that I turned on Safari and I was impressed. I always used firefox at school, and as a switcher, I guess it was just more comfortable for me. However, playing with safari in this new book, I realized it works alot faster, and it has some interesting features. That being said, I understand I'll probably have to use firefox sometimes, and I did run into a couple of pages that safari had trouble loading properly.

I didn't get any word processors, yet, because I want to check what discounts we have at my wife's school (I used her student discount to get the book), however, I'm leaning towards I-work.

Either way, I'm thoroughly impressed, and I look forward to getting to know the OS alot better.
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MYmacROX

 
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Member Since: Mar 17, 2009
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Welcome to the world of Mac and to the Forums!

Glad to hear you had such an easy time setting up your Mac. You mentioned word processor. There are a couple of free Apps VERY similar to MS Office. OpenOffice and NeoOffice. Give them a try before you spend any money on iWork or Office for Mac. You may be pleasantly surprised. I use OpenOffice and love it.

For more assistance in your transition to Mac, check out Switch101 and Mac101. Very helpful!

Also, don't forget to enter your specs in your profile so we'll know what you're using if/when you ask any questions.
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toMACsh

 
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Member Since: Jul 30, 2009
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I don't know if iWork has a Student and Teacher Edition like Office for Mac. That allows you to use the software on up to three computers at once. Just a thought for you to consider.
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SweetCosmicPope

 
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Dude! Sweetness! I didn't think they offered it for mac, but apparently they do. My company has a home-use program through microsoft, and I can get Office 2008 for mac for $9.95!
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Jamie-Jamie

 
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I'd suggest Office:Mac 2008 before OpenOffice. OpenOffice is like running a Windows program: Hideous, stodgy, and a mindboggling collection of tiny toolbars.

Of the for-pay options, I think iWork will be about the best. For a Mac experience without a price-tag, try Bean ( Bean: An OS X Word Processor )
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wirelessmacuser

 
Member Since: Dec 20, 2009
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I decided to try three difference suites on my new MacBook Pro, Office 2008, Open Office & iWork. I don't care for Microsoft Office for Mac as it's not the same as the windows version. There's just enough difference in the look and feel to make it a pain if you work in both environments (windows & mac). Open Office is great. First it's free, second it's available for Mac, Windows & Linux. All three are the same so there is no time wasting learning the differences. Open Office is also very easily customized in a matter of minutes you can hide any tool bars or buttons you don't use, so you have a very nice looking office suite that's very easy to use. Also all versions will save to any file format making it very easy to share files amongst windows, mac & linux. Finally beside being very easy, it's also very fast. Especially if you have an older machine you want to keep using as well as your new mac. The developers of Open Office keep it updated and as a result it's very bug free and stable. I also like that it's not a Microsoft Product.
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DarkestRitual

 
Member Since: Apr 09, 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SweetCosmicPope View Post
Dude! Sweetness! I didn't think they offered it for mac, but apparently they do. My company has a home-use program through microsoft, and I can get Office 2008 for mac for $9.95!
You will also qualify for a free upgrade for the Office 2011 (or is it 2010 even the mac version?) for Mac when it is released. That promo began today, baby! Woohoo!

Anyway, welcome to the club. I do recommend checking out Open Office to see if it will meet your needs, but as much as I hate to say it, the Office suite is really nice, especially on Apple hardware... so if you can afford it, it may be worth it. Anyway, Open Office isn't exactly "fast," it's a word processor... the thing should load in half a second, but it's quick enough that it's not too annoying, and it doesn't slow down the rest of your machine if you have 2GB of RAM (unless you're trying to run WoW or another game in the background :-P )
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toMACsh

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkestRitual View Post
You will also qualify for a free upgrade for the Office 2011 (or is it 2010 even the mac version?)
Yes. I suppose O4M 2004 owners aren't allowed in on that deal...??
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zaxterr

 
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I just went through the big "which word processing software should i get" scenario and iwork won it for me. The templates are just fantastic and keynotes blows powerpoint way in terms of style and presentation.

But thats all just my opinion

Zach
Don't bother trying to explain angel, I know exactly what goes on.
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DarkestRitual

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by toMACsh View Post
Yes. I suppose O4M 2004 owners aren't allowed in on that deal...??
No, only if you buy office for Mac 2008 after March 5th, or Windoze Office 2007.
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CarpathiaMan

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SweetCosmicPope View Post
Once I opened up the machine, I was given a much more warm welcome than windows ever gave me, with the beautiful opening animation. The setup was lightning fast. Took about 5 minutes, including registration, to setup the machine, which would have taken about an hour in windows. Wireless setup was as easy as selecting my router and typing in the password. Much easier than having to screw around with my settings like I did/do on the windows laptop.
That's one of the things that impressed me when I set up my new Mac Mini a couple of months ago -- the way I was gracefully "drawn in" and "escorted into" the easy setup and introduction to the machine. Probably the only tricky part I ran into was the fact that I had to change some port-forwarding settings on my router in order to get Web Sharing to work properly. That required some research, but I eventually did figure it out.
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HBlaine

 
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I've been using NeoOffice on the Powerbook, and have had good luck with it. I also keep Bean on the system for short notes, quick jottings, etc. And I've been experimenting with AbiWord, though I really haven't done much with it yet.

If you're looking for an office suite, I don't think you can go wrong with NeoOffice. The price was certainly the kicker for me!

"By three methods we may learn wisdom: first, by reflection, which is noblest; second, by imitation, which is easiest; and third, by experience, which is the most bitter."
~ Confucius
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Gandalph

 
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Like HBlaine and a few others. I have been using NeoOffice on my iMac 27 and never had any glitches. It does everything I want it to do, Envelopes, Spreadsheets, Letters, Labels etc., everything that Office did on my PC. I liked the price of NeoOffice too, Free!.
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SweetCosmicPope

 
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I think I'm probably going to try Office 08. I don't like to take a whole lot of risks, and I like that it's more-or-less guaranteed. Besides, it's only 10 bucks with my company discount, so why not? If that doesn't work out, I did play with iWork a little bit at the mac store, and it is quite fluid. I just worry about compatibility issues, even though it is supposed to be office compatible.

I'm still happy with my purchase, so far. Only frustrating issue I've had is that snow leopard isn't automatically detecting my windows PC in finder. Spent about 3 hours screwing around with my shared settings and was able to get windows to detect my mac, but not vice-versa. Only this morning did I do more research and find out that snow leopard is kinda iffy on detecting the PCs on your network. Oh well. At least it works when I put in the SMB address.
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TechieJustin

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SweetCosmicPope View Post
I think I'm probably going to try Office 08. I don't like to take a whole lot of risks, and I like that it's more-or-less guaranteed. Besides, it's only 10 bucks with my company discount, so why not? If that doesn't work out, I did play with iWork a little bit at the mac store, and it is quite fluid. I just worry about compatibility issues, even though it is supposed to be office compatible.

I'm still happy with my purchase, so far. Only frustrating issue I've had is that snow leopard isn't automatically detecting my windows PC in finder. Spent about 3 hours screwing around with my shared settings and was able to get windows to detect my mac, but not vice-versa. Only this morning did I do more research and find out that snow leopard is kinda iffy on detecting the PCs on your network. Oh well. At least it works when I put in the SMB address.

I use Office 2008 - I don't have a choice. I'm an accounting student and there are quite a few things in there such as formatting that don't jive on NeoOffice.
No "accounting" format in NeoOffice Calc.

Just make sure you run the updates.

The first release of Office 2008 for mac was unstable. It crashed on me once and actually wiped out the file I was working on - when I force quit it - the file was of length zero. An entire nights work down the Microsoft toilet. But with all the service packs it seems stable.
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