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OS X Operating Systems

Rave Reviews for Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger 1088

druid_getafix writes "The first mass market reviews of Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger are trickling in with a big thumbs up for the release. Walt Mossberg of the WSJ says 'Tiger Leaps Out in Front' but complains about slowness of some applications - notably Mail. David Pogue of NYT says 'But with apologies to Mac-bashers everywhere, Spotlight changes everything. Tiger is the classiest version of Mac OS X ever and, by many measures, the most secure, stable and satisfying consumer operating system prowling the earth.' In related news Mossberg also covers the rising incidence of spam/virii in the Windows world and says '...consider dumping Windows altogether and switching to Apple's Macintosh...'. Previous reviews of Tiger were covered on /. earlier."
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Rave Reviews for Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger

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  • Java 5? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Undertaker43017 ( 586306 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @08:43AM (#12370214)
    Is Java 5 in the final version of Tiger?

    If not when will Apple be releasing it?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 28, 2005 @08:43AM (#12370216)
    Some people were waiting on Tiger's release to find out. Does AltiVec handle the CoreImage stuff alright?
  • by Karellen !-P ( 717831 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @08:43AM (#12370217) Homepage
    I did find it tremendously annoying that the multimedia part of the article requires you to have Real or WMP but not Quicktime.
  • Pity (Score:5, Interesting)

    by DenDave ( 700621 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @08:45AM (#12370235)
    Pity, I haven't got my copy yet. Can't wait... Spotlight will definetly change everything.. I wish we had this functionality on our windows network. Usually colleagues have a habit of making emssy files and storing things all over the shop, if we could search on meta data that would really help. From what I can tell so far, spotlight means you no longer care where things are, they simply exist and the context becomes the "path"... Truly innovating and definetly worth my money.

  • by scsirob ( 246572 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @08:46AM (#12370236)
    I'm always amazed how people seem to be able to judge the quality of an operating system within just a couple of hours. I can't imagine that you can really tell if productivity and/or stability have improved within a couple of hours.

    So how do they review the OS?
  • Re:Voice recognition (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Rude Turnip ( 49495 ) <[valuation] [at] []> on Thursday April 28, 2005 @08:50AM (#12370269)
    Oh Christ, this old chestnut again. Take all the parts you bought for 0.5 a Mini and make it fit in a chassis 2 inches high, 6 inches wide and 6 inches deep. Yes, size counts. A Cappucino PC comes closest and costs much more than a Mini.
  • by kevin_conaway ( 585204 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @08:51AM (#12370279) Homepage
    Aesthetics and responsiveness of widgets? Application load times?
  • Excellent. (Score:2, Interesting)

    by unixbugs ( 654234 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @08:52AM (#12370285)
    I, for one, welcome our new Feline overlords.

    As a long time Slackware and FreeBSD user, I'm just waiting for a good check to come in so I can get a Mac. My problem is that I'm afraid I'll find it so cool and so much better that I will drop my beloved OS's and lose interest.

    As far as Microsoft is concerned, well, they kissed my ass years ago when I dropped out around Windows 98. If there is ever a chance for Mac's to become more affordable I do not see a future for Microsoft. They can't sue us for NOT using their shit. Heh.
  • No Tiger in Tiger (Score:5, Interesting)

    by kherr ( 602366 ) <kevin@pu p p e t> on Thursday April 28, 2005 @08:52AM (#12370287) Homepage
    Java 5 (Tiger) is not included in Mac OS X 10.4 (Tiger). But Apple's got it under development and I'd suspect there'll be a Java update to Java 5 within a short period. Apple's been making test builds available to developers.
  • by digitaldc ( 879047 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @08:54AM (#12370298)
    Apple, now raking in profits from its iPod, should seriously consider lowering their prices on their high-end machines to gain market share. Currently APPL is trading at $36.35 +0.40 (1.11%) a share and the stock has gone up consistenty since 2003 when it was around $10 a share. Now is the time for them to make some moves.
    If Tiger indeed blows away XP, so they should try to advertise it more, get it out to as many people as possible in order to increase their popularity and inspire more people to use and develop Apple software. If everyone had a better alternative to Windows for say just a fraction more in price, people would start buying it. The iPod has already convinced people Apple is a good brand, all they need is a price incentive to switch to Apple PCs.
  • by sehryan ( 412731 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @08:56AM (#12370326)
    I would love to make the switch, but I am not sure I could justify it. I know it is all subjective, but what is a good reason to switch away from WinXP? Looking for real reasons to switch, not trolls or flames.

    For reference, I don't have problems with virii, my system never crashes, and all of my main programs (mainly design programs from Adobe and Macromedia) run very nicely. So what would I gain from switching?
  • Slowness (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Mr_Silver ( 213637 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @09:02AM (#12370366)
    Walt Mossberg of the WSJ says 'Tiger Leaps Out in Front' but complains about slowness of some applications - notably Mail.

    In all fairness, I've not used OSX before but back when the Classic and IIc reigned supreme the common complaint about the Mac was that it was too underpowered for the Operating System and the applications. Hell, my 7mhz Amiga felt zippier and responded quicker than the IIc.

    Even in the Windows world, iTunes runs rather slow, has limited features (including the annoying "feature" of getting itself and my iPod completely out of sync with "consolidate" being the only, drastic, tool to resolve this) and takes up an inane amount of memory. Hardly a good impression of what to expect from Apple.

    Sadly, these two things (including the fact that I'll be effectivily throwing away all the money I've currently invested in my PC) sour my desire to immediately switch to Apple.

    However, when we all shift to BTX and I've got no choice but to replace every part of my computer then I have no doubt that I'll make the jump.

    This won't be for a couple of years and i think there might be others who will wait until they find that the only way to move forward is replace so much of their PC that switching to Apple entirely isn't so much of a big deal.

  • Re:Voice recognition (Score:5, Interesting)

    by boaworm ( 180781 ) <> on Thursday April 28, 2005 @09:05AM (#12370400) Homepage Journal
    Apple is obviously not interested in competing with all this crap'n'cheap PC storese and hardware floating around. Why can't people figure that out ?

    Furthermore, I've actually spent less money on computer hardware since I bought my Power Mac, simply because I was suddenly so happy with it, and felt no need to constantly change stuff.

    I threw my last Windows/PC years ago, running Linux/OpenBSD on my servers, and OS X on laptops/workstation. I dont miss this fuzz about crappy drivers, PSUs that goes black, noice, having to install a shitload of free/shareware just to be able to do something.

    Simply put, I value my time, so I save money (and adrenaline) on my Mac's. If you dont mind all the crap that goes with cheap PC hardware, Apple is simply not for you, so dont "whine" about not being able to buy a cheap Mac.
  • by ites ( 600337 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @09:13AM (#12370486) Journal
    Another slashdot user predicted this something like a year and a half ago [].

    "What percentage of Windows PCs are 0wn3d by one or other parasite?
    By multiple parasites? By spammers working with crackers working
    with corrupt web site designers and pornographers? Enough, I think
    to ensure that within a short time - say 6 to 12 months - we will
    hit infection levels of 50% and more. The vast majority of home
    PCs, happily connected to the Internet, will be hit, and a large
    proportion of office PCs, insufficiently secured and protected,
    will also succumb."

    This was written in September 2003. And it's just starting to hit the general consciousness now?
  • by HawkingMattress ( 588824 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @09:17AM (#12370520)
    Their new automator [] framework, which let applications send streams of objects to each other and have them propose interfaces to interact with.
    (Well that's how it seems to work at least). It looks like the equivalent of unix pipes for desktop apps.
    Something i've been waiting for for years.
  • by amichalo ( 132545 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @09:18AM (#12370537)
    Everyone is a buzz about Spotloght and it is no doubt going to be great, but I am also looking forward to improving productivity with Automator.

    As with lots of scripting languages, sometimes it is just plain faster to brute force what you are doing than sit down, recall a language syntax and function set, write a script, give it a test, and then run it. What I see as cool about Automator is that it makes building a script so freaking easy and fast and since you can call scripts with scripts, you can build a nice function library of scripts to make the process even faster.

    I am also digging on Dashboard. At first I didn't like the idea of a second desktop that is different than the first, and I will have to try before I agree that it makes sense to keep these on a different desktop, but I love the idea of the small applets (I used Konfabulator breifly) for small tasks like weather, itunes, stock tickers, and calculator. That they take minimal system memory means I will be more apt to keep them open and within easy reach without having to launch the applicaiton.

    Lastly, I am totally excited about iChat AV supporting up to four people (including me) in a video chat. It just looks so cool to see three people sitting around the virtual room like that and this feature is making me finally break down and buy the iSight. It looks like the best autofocusing camera available for $150.
  • by Okonomiyaki ( 662220 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @09:19AM (#12370544) Homepage
    IF anyone considers tomorrow a special day at all, it's probably because it's Friday, or because "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" movie opens, or because it's Uma Thurman's birthday.

    It's also the birthday of former Japanese Emperor Hirohito, now known as "Midori no Hi" or "Green Day" (no relation to the band). It's an important national holiday as it kicks off "Golden Week," which consists of three other national holidays including Japan's national day and Boy's Day. So, if you were thinking of visiting an Onsen or going to Izu Peninsula this week, you should rethink your plan. Those kinds of places will be really crowded but downtown Tokyo should be nearly vacant. Except, of course, the crowd that should be gathering around the Apple Store in Ginza.

    Just in case you were interested.
  • by SilentChris ( 452960 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @09:31AM (#12370707) Homepage
    That said, we often don't get time to properly review it.

    I remember reviewing for GameSpot (back in the dot-com days), receiving a game and having 1 week to write a review. You may be thinking "One week, so what?" but you've got to paint a picture of the game accurately enough that it answers a key question for the consumer: "Should I buy this thing or not?" I remember a few times I gave low review score to certain magazines on games that should've been higher (Twisted Metal 1, why did I rate you so poorly) and gave high scores to games that didn't deserve it (look up "Crazy Ivan").

    It's pretty much the same for OS software.
  • Re:Folders (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Gulthek ( 12570 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @09:36AM (#12370780) Homepage Journal
    I will dissolve my structured storage wholeheartedly. Smart folders will be my directory structure. Fear will keep the local files in line.

    It will be a lot easier to just add the project information into the metadata than rely on a fixed directory structure. For example, if I want to view files related to projects A, B, and C then I can just search for all three. If I want them conviently grouped, I'll create a smart folder. When I don't care if they are grouped anymore, smart folder is gone.

    Sure it's going to take some adjustment and I'm not going to lump everything together. Although...there's no reason why different filetypes need to be separated. Hmm, I think the degree of my file lumping will be determined by smart folder details.

    If I could say, group all jpg files that have resolutions of (1024x768, 1280x1024, etc) that would be fantastic. If I can store metadata (like theme, mood, etc) in jpg files without using iPhoto (I don't like to mix my photographs with my desktop wallpaper) then it would be even better.
  • Re:Voice recognition (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 28, 2005 @09:38AM (#12370804)
    A very successful loan broker once said there are those who constantly hunt around for the cheapest rates and they play multiple agents to get the best rates. These types of people are not worth his time because they are catered to by brokers who do not offer any service except the best rates. His services include prompt replies to emails/voice mails and actually answers his phone and takes the time to visit his (potential) customers.

    You sound like one of those types of people. Apple doesn't want your money because your attitude costs them much more than your business is worth.
  • by Jugalator ( 259273 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @09:49AM (#12370955) Journal
    Another example; everything is drag'n'drop. I'm composing an email and need a picture from a website? Just drag the pic from safari over in the email totally seamlessly.

    Just checked, and the same happens here at work with IE and Outlook. :-)
  • Re:Voice recognition (Score:3, Interesting)

    by jav1231 ( 539129 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @09:50AM (#12370979)
    The Mini works like any other Mac. I think it's missing a microphone but I don't know about the others. I use a Mac Mini and it works great! I don't have a subset of features or anything. I can rip CD's, burn DVD's, it recognizes my USB drives, Firewire drives, my iPod, I can even rip video off my camcorder. All this with my existing monitor.
  • The petty annoyances (Score:5, Interesting)

    by SuperKendall ( 25149 ) * on Thursday April 28, 2005 @10:00AM (#12371088)
    Usng both a Windows2K (was using XP for a while as well) computer and a Mac day to day, I can list some little things that annoy me on Windows that are solved by the Mac:

    Lots of windows? Taskbar has two modes, neither of whcih work very well - either fold your icons together and make it really a bother to get to, or have the taskbar go to multiple lines. Expose is just SO much better a way of dealing with finding multiple windows.

    Macs don't ever hide menu items just because you've not used them for a while.

    Ever had a Windows Window no respond to you because a modal dialgue has popped up somewhere and that window is now obscuring it? Well, I have and Macs do not have that problem due to a much more intelligent way of handlind modal popups (it's embedded in the window that spawned it).

    Config files for every app that are really text and editible (or removable) by hand.

    UNIX utilities as first-class members of the OS and not something that clings to life within the system. Yeah I'm looking at you Cygwin!

    Usable simple text editing app (TextEdit). Both Wordpad and Notepad have unique issues that means you can't just automatically use one or the other (why do you think they are both still there). Heck in Tiger you can just use TextEdit for 99% of your word processing since it reads/writes Word files and supports things like tables.

    Everything supports save as PDF through printing interface. No need to use Acrobat.

    A home directory that reallly is in one place!!! You don't have to search the whole hard drive to REALLY back up all your app settings. They are all under ~/Library.

    When people talk about being more productive on a Mac, these are the kinds of things they mean. It's all the little annoyances that are part of using Windows day to day... you don't notice them after a while but each one makes you just a tiny bit slower and interrupts your workflow. In my experience Macs have a better sustained throughput for humans. Sure if you're just sitting there typing a letter one may not be faster than the other, but it's when you have to stop typing and make transitions when your odds of being interrupted are lower on Mac.

    And for less subtle reasons - Spotlight? Dashboard? Automator? These are pretty compelling reasons all on thier own, especially if you can write code at all. And if you can't then Automator should be even more compelling.

  • by acomj ( 20611 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @10:06AM (#12371176) Homepage
    Don't get me wrong, Tiger seems like a great operating upgrade. I think its a little steep at 130$ but probably worth it.
    My problem with it is that it fragments the new mac users more than 10.3 did. Here is why.

    They give the developer new tools/frameworks for easier better application development. These are great. HOWEVER, if you a developer choose to use those new features your software ONLY works on 10.4 (tiger) not on 10.3. core data for example []
    . Also it looks like apple won't make java 1.5 work on older versions of the mac OS, meaning they won't work on older versions the the OS either. This further fragmenting apples small market share, adding frustration to developers and software purchasers alike. You have to code with the older frameworks or compel your users to update. This is a not required but "strongly compelled upgrade"

  • by leonbrooks ( 8043 ) <SentByMSBlast-No ...> on Thursday April 28, 2005 @10:14AM (#12371289) Homepage
    ...Apache, OpenSSHd and PostgreSQL all run just fine on XP Home. $0 each, simple to install and configure.

    A Mac Mini RRPs for about AUD$799 here sans screen and with OS X bundled. I'll ring them tomorrow and find out if and how much for one without OS X. I can build a near-equivalent x86 whitebox (40GB HDD, 256MB RAM) for about AUD$450. If I could buy a naked PowerPC box of any physical size from Apple for about $550, I would be recommending them to customers like there was no tomorrow. Runs Linux but not x86 cracks, doesn't run Windows. Paradise.
  • by TheLogster ( 617383 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @10:20AM (#12371377) Homepage Journal
    The reason that there is so little malware for the mac - is beacuse very few people are writing mainstream applications for the OS.

    Windows is still Industry Standard - and all you mac and linux zealots can do nothing to change it (well - not just yet anyway :)

    At the moment, you can't go into PCworld, Game, Staples, etc and buy "Joe's Recipe Database" for *nix (linux or OSX). For the foreseeable future, the world is running Windows.

    It is just one of those things. However, one day Micosoft will make a mistake, and they _will_ lose their domanace over the PC industry. I think it will happen when there is a completly new kind of hardware that is taken up.

    My $0.02

  • by dr00g911 ( 531736 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @10:33AM (#12371544)
    Automator is *really* cool for a 1.0 app.

    On my first demo of it, I created a desktop 'droplet' icon that allows account execs at my shop to drop a job order or update document on an icon, it creates a new email, summarizes the file in the body, attaches the file, sends it to the appropriate people with the correct job number in the subject line, and files it in the sent mail archive specific to which client the job number refers to.

    I did this in three minutes flat on the first day I played with it.

    There's a ton of reliance still on using shell script glue if you're doing super complex stuff, but once more actions (like applescript dictionaries) are available for common apps right in the automator window, people are going to start creating some amazing stuff.
  • by GaryPatterson ( 852699 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @10:35AM (#12371569)
    Your logical error is in assuming that you're indicative of Mac users (or even users of any platform).

    Obviously you're not, as you spend 100% of your time in the shell.

    I'll go out on a limb and say that the other 99.9% of us use the GUI. For me, Spotlight is going to be interesting, Automator will be potentially great, gcc4.0 will be amazing and the Core data services will change my world.

    And I'm not representative either. I develop games as a hobby, so gcc4.0 makes my list of new toys but would make few other people's lists I suspect.

    But end users will soon feel the effect of the Core data services, in image-processing apps, in rapid development of new apps (they should spring up around all over the place) and in a consistent expectation of the interface and how it works.

    I don't see Dashboard as being of great value to me. But then I don't use Expose either. But I know a lot of people who do, and they'll probably get great value out of Dashboard. It's not just weather and time, after all, but any service people want.

    Calm down a bit, realise that the majority of users don't work like you do, and respect their excitement in getting new toys to play with.
  • I have an 1ghz iBook G4 that I had done a clean install of Panther a month ago and installed Tiger directly over the top when I received it yesterday. It works beautifully. My roomate has a 1.2ghz Powerbook that's Panther installation dates back to the reciept of the machine over a year and half ago, and Tiger runs like shit on it. It broke everything. Connecting Firewire devices gives him Apple's Screen of Death (I didn't know it even existed . . . the screen goes black and white and says shit in a whole bunch of languages), Expose is broke, his widgets don't work, Spotlight is slow as hell, networking busted . . . wiping his drive and reinstalling clean fixed all of this. Just something to keep in mind.
  • Re: XGrid (Score:3, Interesting)

    by johnrpenner ( 40054 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @11:17AM (#12372184) Homepage

    Its pretty cool that Apple choose to include XGrid as part of Tiger -- software to distribute complex tasks among a number of networked machines. Before it was only XCode (now updated to v2) that did distributed compiles. But XGrid should lead to more applications designed to take advantage of networked Macs for CPU-intensive operations.

  • Re:Voice recognition (Score:3, Interesting)

    by ArbitraryConstant ( 763964 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @11:21AM (#12372232) Homepage
    This is why Microsoft didn't have proper piracy protection until XP. Up until XP came out, they felt the competition was still a threat. Linux wasn't quite on the horizon (for Microsoft as a desktop threat), and Motorola had nearly killed Apple.

    Of course, the competition is more of a threat now than any time since the early 90s, but that's a pretty new development.
  • Re:Voice recognition (Score:5, Interesting)

    by As Seen On TV ( 857673 ) <> on Thursday April 28, 2005 @12:39PM (#12373332)
    Mac OS X includes speech commands, not speech-to-text. You can't dictate to your Mac using the built-in software. So don't compare it to anything you talked about here; it's a different kind of solution.

    That said, speech commands work amazingly well. You can click a file in the Finder and say "Mail this to (name from your address book)," and it opens up a Mail window with that address, the file attached, ready for you to type or just click "Send."

    That's cool. That's really cool. No question. But you know what really blows me away? About two weeks ago, without really thinking about it, I did it while brushing my teeth. Seriously. I was sitting at my computer at home early in the morning, still half asleep, with my toothbrush in my mouth. I mumbled "Send the latest blah-blah file to person-so-n-so," which I have set up to trigger a Spotlight search to find the most recent copy of a specific file and e-mail it to the named contact. (I have to do this often enough it was worth automating.) I said this with my toothbrush in my mouth, with a mouth full of Crest. And it understood me.

    Honestly, it kinda freaked me out a little. It was a very "Open the pod bay doors, Hal" moment.

    (Just for fun, I tried it again, and it didn't work. I guess I was able to mumble it just right the first time, totally by random chance. Got lucky. Still a pretty funny moment.)
  • by FredFnord ( 635797 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @01:37PM (#12374066)'s illegal for you to run Apache, OpenSSHd, and PostgreSQL on your Windows machine. Or, at least, it's illegal for you to actually serve more than one person off of them. The license doesn't let you have multiple people connecting to your machine like that, if I recall correctly.

  • Re:Spam/virii? (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 28, 2005 @01:45PM (#12374154)
    You can't blame an operating system for increased spam.

    Sure you can, if the operating system's weak-ass, easily-circumvented security allows a machine to get easily zombied and become an SMTP relay for a spammer. I don't have to look any further than my mailserver logs to see how much of a problem that is. All day long, my machine is refusing connections from machines in the DHCP pools of consumer broadband ISPs who specifically prohibit running servers.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 28, 2005 @02:46PM (#12374971)
    No joke.

    QT should be free. MS doesn't charge for WMP. QT might be worth it, but you have to pay extra for MPEG2.


    And they keep updating QT with no consideration for previous licenses. So Apple has essentially said "you're better off pirating".

    I should not have to keep buying QT over and over. Plus, people who are nice enough to give Apple $130 for an OS update should get a QT license for free.

    So Apple is saying "please don't pay, get a keygen. PLEASE!!!!"
  • by OglinTatas ( 710589 ) on Thursday April 28, 2005 @04:11PM (#12375910)
    Of course the average /.'er drives a VW Thing that was hand built by everyone he/she knows, only runs on methanol that he/she makes in the back yard, has the steering wheel on the wrong side, and requires three keys to start.

    It was a used postal jeep, I had rebuilt nearly every part on it. Steering wheel on the wrong side, it started with a screwdriver though (not as secure as the linux analogy you make, so I had to hide an ignition cut out switch--security through obscurity, donchano) I finally got a real job, and bought a vw tdi. Now I burn biodiesel, instead of the methanol you mention.
  • Re:port to x86? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by bani ( 467531 ) on Monday May 02, 2005 @08:54AM (#12406000)
    What has hardware manufacturing got to do with entering the x86 arena? Even microsoft doesn't make PCs. They make operating systems.

    Apple could sell OSX for x86, and benefit from the cutthroat pricing of x86 hardware, and the incredible choice of peripherals -- instead of the elitist pricing of mac hardware and the incredible lack of peripherals.

    Apple is already competing with microsoft. Selling OSX for x86 would change nothing (except let OSX leverage hardware it doesnt currently have access to).

I am more bored than you could ever possibly be. Go back to work.