Question regarding Intel Macs

Posted:
in macOS edited January 2014
I'm a Mac-convert-to-be and I'm much confused about Macs running on Intel processors and the breadth of applications that I'll be able to run. I'm looking into the purchase of a MacBook Pro. Seeing that Apple has made the leap to Intel (it's been a while, bah), are there any limits to what applications I can run?



Example: Microsoft Office 2004 is made specifically for Mac OS X. Could I simply install Microsoft Office 2003 Professional for the PC and run it using Mac OS X, without having to switch over to Windows XP in Bootcamp? Would I have to get a Mac-only copy of Adobe Photoshop CS2, or is there software on the Mac that would handle execution of Photoshop for me?



The words Rosetta and ParallelsDesktop come to mind, but I'm pretty confused about the matter altogether.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 17
    First of all, welcome to the forums. As for your questions:



    1. No, the Windows PC version of ANY application will not run on OS X. The Apple operating system is built on what's called UNIX. Where as Windows is not. So in short, they're built very, very differently and would not run the other's program. You will need to buy the OS X version of the program, or find some other program for OS X that does the same job.



    2. As for the switch to Intel, all this means to the common person is that the machine is faster. OS X is still OS X, and as far as we're concerned, it hasn't changed.



    3. But if we go a bit deeper, the Intel chips are quite a bit different that the previous G4 and G5 chips Apple was using. So to make all of the OS X programs run on the new Intel machines, Apple made Rosetta. All Rosetta is is an emulator. So any application that isn't made especially to run on Intel Macs will think they're running on a G4, but then Rosetta interprets what the program wants, and acts as a translator to the Intel machine, then translates what the machine says back.



    So to simplify, the Mac version of Microsoft Office will run, but it'll run a little slower than it could if it was made for the Intel Macs. typically around 60% to 80% of the speed it should run at.



    In laymen's terms, Look for OS X programs that have the "Universal Binary" logo. This means that the program will run full speed on the G4, G5, and the new Intel Macs. Most all companies are either Universal already, or have plans to release a downloadable patch for their already released software.



    For example, Adobe Photoshop CS2 is actually better on the Mac side than the Windows side. The application's interface is more streamlined and well done. But Adobe has not released a Universal Binary for it yet. So it'll be faster on a G5 than an Intel. But don't worry, it's expected soon. CS3 will be made for Intel.



    4. Parallels Desktop is pretty much a Windows emulator so you can run Windows XP/Vista inside it's own window while in OS X. Though it's slow and runs very few applications at the moment. Where as Boot Camp allows you to install Windows XP/Vista natively on the system so they run at full speed. However you must run Windows OR OS X one at a time. To run the other you have to reboot the system.



    However... Judging by how new you are to Apple and OS X, I would suggest reading up on how to use OS X and forget about relating it to Windows, at least for now. For every little action or trick you used in Windows, there is a much faster, more efficient way of doing it on OS X.



    OS X will normally let you do things the same way and method you used in Windows, but there's a better way, I promise. Think of it as learning to ride a bike again. Trying to use Windows as a reference point will only hold you back.
  • Reply 2 of 17
    Excellent, thanks for the response. Looks like the guy I was talking to yesterday in the local mall knew what he was talking about to some extent.



    Another issue, what MSN Messenger clients and BitTorrent clients are recommended for use on Mac OS X? I'm aware that the Microsoft port of MSN Messenger does not have support for the iSight camera built into the MacBook Pro. How is OpenOffice for the Mac?



    :]
  • Reply 3 of 17
    Here, it's a relevant thread. - Most Wanted Apps



    I know what you'll be thinking when you get to Adium... but trust me, it's a much loved mascot.



    also, as an owner of a Powerbook G4 and then a Macbook Pro, I can say it's a very solid machine. I'm actually in love with it. I do all my work on it, and now with it's 256Mb X1600 graphics card, I do all my gaming on it too.
  • Reply 4 of 17
    lundylundy Posts: 4,466member
    Quote:

    Example: Microsoft Office 2004 is made specifically for Mac OS X. Could I simply install Microsoft Office 2003 Professional for the PC and run it using Mac OS X, without having to switch over to Windows XP in Bootcamp?





    The simple answer is that the Windows version of Office expects to have Windows installed for it to make its calls to.



    The Mac version of Office makes calls to Mac OS X.
  • Reply 5 of 17
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by smashbrosfan


    4. Parallels Desktop is pretty much a Windows emulator so you can run Windows XP/Vista inside it's own window while in OS X. Though it's slow and runs very few applications at the moment. Where as Boot Camp allows you to install Windows XP/Vista natively on the system so they run at full speed. However you must run Windows OR OS X one at a time. To run the other you have to reboot the system.



    This is the only part of your explanation I disagree with:

    I use parallels very often and it is actually really fast running windows XP, with one big exception: Games.

    For stuff like office or photoshop it runs about as fast as my work pc (a p4 2.8 GHz Dell box). In other words; more than fast enough. One caveat: you need lots of ram (I have 2 Gb installed and use a 20" core duo intel iMac).

    The reason it doesn't run games well is because it doesn't get full access to your mac's graphics card, so for windows games you'd want to go the bootcamp route.
  • Reply 6 of 17
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,209moderator
    Some applications run quite well in Crossover. I managed to run Half-Life 2 right through. I'm trying to get virtualdub, Office 2003 and Photoshop up and running though so far unsuccessfully.



    I don't like the idea of using Bootcamp so I use Parallels more than anything.



    Crossover is like a simulation of Windows in that some people made up APIs that mimic those under Windows. No Windows installation is required. This has a disadvantage of lacking compatibility but the advantages that hardware acceleration works to a certain extent, there is no Ram limitation and lower startup time. So far I've found it to be of very little use beyond Half-Life 2 but I like it for that reason alone. Photoshop would be a big plus.



    Parallels and VMWare are virtualization solutions that run proper copies of Windows but contained in a limited environment. Disadvantages include they are limited by Ram, deleting stuff doesn't free up space - you have to use a disk image tool, no hardware acceleration yet but the advantage is that compatibility is very good. Most non-hardware accelerated programs will run just fine. I personally use this for most Windows stuff.



    Bootcamp is a dual boot solution. A lot of people get confused as to what it actually is. Some people think that the 10GB minimum space requirement is for Bootcamp itself. Bootcamp is nothing more than a program that partitions your hard drive dynamically and burns a drivers CD so that Windows can run your hardware properly. It also initiates the Windows installation process. In short, it's just a program to help install Windows, it is in no way used to run Windows so after you use Bootcamp to get Windows installed, it runs like it would on a PC. This has the advantage of full compatibility, full hardware acceleration but you have to restart to switch systems.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by yetieater


    Another issue, what MSN Messenger clients and BitTorrent clients are recommended for use on Mac OS X?



    You might be able to run MSN Messenger via Crossover since Internet Explorer works in it. With Crossover, when you install a .exe, it creates a .app to launch the Windows app too. You can also use the Mac version of MSN Messenger but it's not as good or Amsn ( http://amsn.sourceforge.net/ ).



    For Bittorrent, use Azureus.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by yetieater


    How is OpenOffice for the Mac?



    I thought it lagged a bit and was generally quite slow. I prefer NeoOffice which runs without X11. I think it's a bit faster and seems a little bit more integrated with OS X but a Cocoa port would be best.



    Like I say, if you can get the Windows version of Office running under Crossover, that would probably be a good solution with the exception that it may not access your OS X fonts, which Neooffice does.
  • Reply 7 of 17
    hobbeshobbes Posts: 1,252member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by yetieater


    How is OpenOffice for the Mac?



    Dpending on what you use Office for, you may want to check out Apple's Office-compatible mini-suite, iWork. For the price, it's a great deal, and nice software.



    You'll almost certainly want to hold off until January for the '07 version, though, as it will gain a spreadsheet and Pages will be much spruced up.



    I believe also that Adobe will provide a "crossgrade" for Adobe software from one OS to another for a nominal fee.
  • Reply 8 of 17
    jtusjtus Posts: 18member
    I run Parallels Desktop on am Macbook Pro and it runs fine. It does not run windows programs slower the if they are on a PC. I have not found anything that doesn't run on it. I am running Corel Draw, Auto Cad, and some other graphic design programs on it with no problems at all. The newest verssion of Parallels has great overall performance.

    You will be very happy you switched. I AM !!!
  • Reply 9 of 17
    I don't quite get how you can call yourself a switcher if you go back to windows in one way or another for everything.... If you want to use both OS's, fine. But it seems to me that using OS X is pointless if you're going to be using Boot Camp or Parallels for everything.



    Doesn't OS X offer better graphics design tools anyway?
  • Reply 10 of 17
    jtusjtus Posts: 18member
    Some of the progroams used for the business that I am in do not work on the MAC OS although I wished they did. The programs that do work on OSX are much more stable, work faster, & are all around better. But I did sell my old PC laptop and only use my Macbook Pro so yes I am a switcher and I also bought 2 Macbooks for my wife and daughter. They both love them too.
  • Reply 11 of 17
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Hobbes


    I believe also that Adobe will provide a "crossgrade" for Adobe software from one OS to another for a nominal fee.



    Can anyone confirm this? I may call Adobe tomorrow, but I'm curious to hear if anyone here has actually done this.



    I've got a Windows version of Photoshop CS2, and I'd like to crossgrade to CS2 on the Mac. A "nominal fee" would be fantastic!
  • Reply 12 of 17
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by smashbrosfan


    I don't quite get how you can call yourself a switcher if you go back to windows in one way or another for everything.... If you want to use both OS's, fine. But it seems to me that using OS X is pointless if you're going to be using Boot Camp or Parallels for everything.



    Doesn't OS X offer better graphics design tools anyway?



    Yes but Adobe CS Suite is not UB and is crippled when running on the intel processors in OS X. I am using Bootcamp and Adobe CS suite until Adobe releases the UB version, sometime next year.
  • Reply 13 of 17
    mr. hmr. h Posts: 4,698member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by dutch pear


    This is the only part of your explanation I disagree with:

    I use parallels very often and it is actually really fast running windows XP



    Yeah, I think smashbrosfan must have confused "Parallels" with "CrossOver".
  • Reply 14 of 17
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by yetieater


    How is OpenOffice for the Mac?

    :]



    While There is a UNIX port for OpenOffice, it requires something called X11- a UNIX window system.



    For Mac OS X, there is an Open Office port called NeoOffice (basically OpenOffice all prettied up to run smoothly in OS X).



    So in answer to your question, it runs fine. However, I'd reccomend learning more about the Mac OS and Apple's own applications (think iWork). Both Keynote and Pages have easy-to-use features that are very fancy, very innovative, and, well, usable. Thats the beauty of the Mac OS: Elegant yet simple, Simple and easy to use, Easy to use yet powerful.
  • Reply 15 of 17
    im in a hurry so i dont know if this has been said already (havent read the thread fully)



    but i know some music applications ship wiht both a windows version and a mac version on the disc, and rely on a USB dongle to limit the apps use to one machine, windows or mac.



    but somehow i dont think this is where you are headed
  • Reply 16 of 17
    Quote:

    How is OpenOffice for the Mac?



    After spending many hours trying to get Microsoft's Office X to run on an intel machine, (I couldn't find something specific saying it wouldn't run and it did install, but 2004 is the only MS OFfice version that will run apparently) I finally gave up and went with Open Office. This was another trial, as I could not get the install from the Mac OS DVD to complete the X11 install properly to 10.4.8. I finally dropped back to the original 10.4.0, installed X11 from the Mac OS DVD. (I think my OS could have been corrupted somehow because I was having some Safari crashes that went away after I dropped back. Anyway, I installed OpenOffice and then proceeded to try to open an Excel file moved over the network from my PC that was password protected. To my amazement and delight, up came the password dialog, it accepted my password, and all of the color cell highlighting that I use showed up correctly. This is a very impressive product regardless of the cost.
  • Reply 17 of 17
    As someone who has made the switch from Windows to Linux, back to Windows and finally to Mac OS X (by far the best OS on the planet), I can tell you that Mac OS X works like it should and like you thought Windows worked when you were learning it. Remember how you just put stuff in the trash when you was younger to delete stuff, the later learned you needed to go through a "Add/Remove Programs" processes to actually uninstall the program? Well, in Mac OS X -- revert back to when you was a child, and just trash it. :-D



    You will notice other things as well, but just stick to a Mac Community like this one (I sticked with IOnMac.com) and ask them questions when I couldn't figure something out.



    And one final thing about MS Office: Don't use it. Use NeoOffice if you wish (I myself have it on my Mac), but please spend the extra $79 for iWork. Keynote is amazing, and Pages (once you get use to the minor difference in how you double space/change font/color ect..) is the most amazing word processor in the world. It is, however, the only Apple product I know of that has a learning curve. Things don't always work like you'd think. But what I love most is how you can make professional documents (flyers/newsletters/ect) in a dash. All it takes is a couple clicks. and then you change and edit the template. And if your in college -- learn how to make your own template with the font/space requirements so you don't have to remember to do it (just makes it easier for yourself).



    But anyway, you should get a iWork trial with your Mac OS X (and a MS Office Test Drive, too) and you can do the comparing. (And yes, both Pages and Keynote can both create and edit Word/Power Point formats, so don't worry about that).
Sign In or Register to comment.