Apple MacBookToday I became one of the PC-to-Mac switchers. Before 2 years, I would never have considered a Mac, but when in 2006 Apple switched from PowerPC to Intel processors, it started to become interesting. This made it possible to run Windows as an operating system on your mac. You won’t hear me saying that Windows is better than OsX, on the contrary, but there is the fact that as a developer there is software I really need and that is only available for Windows (to name one: Internet Explorer), besides some very expensive licences I have for Windows versions of certain software.
So all of a sudden that was not an issue anymore.

Then OsX Leopard was released, with a stable Bootcamp built-in, and around the same time VMWare came out with their new Fusion. Now you could run both OsX and Windows at the same time. I couldn’t wish for more so I went out to buy my first Mac: a MacBook Pro 15″ 2.4GHz

That it looks awesome, no discussion about that, but the performance and the screen quality is great as well. Plus, it’s so complete: support for all the wireless protocols (even 802.11n), the built-in iSight camera, DVI-output, magnetic power connector (great invention), bluetooth, gigabit ethernet, lightened keyboard. In other words, totally prepared for the future. And the preinstalled software is actually all you need to manage all your files, documents, mails, addressbooks, … To find the Windows equivalent you spend 2 weeks searching and installing and comparing before you find the program that fullfills your needs.

Then it was time to install Windows next to OsX using Bootcamp. The whole installation process was a piece of cake. I encountered only one issue, but that was more likely being caused by a damaged install disc.
After that I installed VMWare Fusion, which would allow me to boot Windows in OsX. The installation was short and easy and the whole virtual OS environment works like a charm. With Spaces you can even switch from fullscreen OsX to fullscreen Windows with just a push of a button. The performance of the virtual OS is, as to be expected, worse than if you would boot straight into Windows, but for me it is definitely acceptable for the things I want to do with it. It takes a little time to get used to the Mac keyboard layout in a Windows environment, but those things are very well documented in the Fusion help files.
One thing I would do different if I would do it all over again, is to format the Windows partition in FAT32 rather than NTFS. NTFS is actually a better formatting structure, but when using FAT32 you can access files on the Windows partition from within OsX without using the VMWare software.

So far, nothing but positive comments on my latest investment, and looking forward to when the iPhone is going to be released over here :-)

If you’re planning to do some serious programming on the MacBook you should definitely use an external keyboard or you will end up using 3-key-combinations for typing some of the most used characters. Actually, this is the case with all Apple keyboards. Strange.