PCs with no pre-installed crapware are now a special product category with a marketing campaign

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123 Responses to “PCs with no pre-installed crapware are now a special product category with a marketing campaign”

  1. coryf says:

    To be clear, it’s not the OS, it’s the OEMs.  It’s not that hard to fix, just re-install Windows.  Personally, I think this is a matter of pricing.  If you want to pay 2-3x the price for a Mac, it’s going to have (easy to DIY) little touches.

    • 2-3x is more like $50-$100 these days, and Linux is usually cheaper!

      • Dan Limbach says:

        A sweet i7 notebook running Windows 7 is about half the cost of a similar Mac. You may have to shop around, but the deals are out there, unlike Apple products. I went through the whole process when buying my son a notebook for High School. He chose a loaded ASUS i7 notebook over a Mac. Tons of excellent open source (free) software, like OpenOffice, Paint.net,  GIMP, Inkscape, and Audacity. No brainer.

        • r says:

          See Cory Doctorow authored post Super Punch: Dell laptops are terribly low quality and you shouldn’t buy one.

        • That’s true, but I don’t think they’re all that sweet. When the laptops are as good as Apple’s — durable materials, quiet-running, touchpads that work — they stop being $400-$600 and head to $800 and above — which is where the Macs start anyway.

          For example, the Asus Zenbook is similar to the cheapest Macs, and is about $100 or so cheaper. A great deal, and I’d go for that one if I had to have a Windows laptop as my main machine.

          • Guest says:

            OSX is such absolute shite it’s not worth buying at any price. But folks who “write” for a living don’t actually need anything more than a text editor, so they have no idea how much more useful Windows is over the garbage released by Apple.

        • Jerry Brenner says:

          Buy the speed you need.  You buy a reasonable Windows laptop for $500 every couple of years and you’ll always have a reasonable Windows laptop with fantastic battery life, the newest OS and a spare hanging around for whenever.  Or you buy an Apple, get the same benefit and hope the battery lasts and nothing goes wrong. 

          If you use your computer for work but the tool that works best.  A moving company wouldn’t buy a pick-up truck.  A cab company wouldn’t buy a Hyundai Accent.  A mechanic does not buy no-name wrenches at Walmart.  But a pickup, an Accent or cheap wrenches suit the home user just fine.  Why waste money on tool you’ll never benefit from when you buy something that works just as well for half the price.

          • OgilvyTheAstronomer says:

            That’s the thing – the “just as well” part isn’t really. If you can afford it, generally the Mac will give you a noticeably better experience (not having to fuck about with antivirus software *alone* makes it worth it in my opinion). If you are a student on a budget who wants to play games on the side, then get a Windows laptop, by all means.

          • Stephen Rice says:

            “A mechanic does not buy no-name wrenches at Walmart.”
            You know, they often do.

      • Matthew Cunningham says:

        Umm, no.  2x is usually the rule of thumb. Right now you can get a 13″ Macbook Pro for $1199 with 4GB memory,  500GB hard drive, 2.4 GHz i5 Processor. At Lenovo you can get a IdeaPad Z470 for $589 with 6GB memory, 500GB hard drive, 2.4GHz i5 Processor, 14″ screen.

        • It helps to compare oranges to oranges. As a quick rule of thumb, Apple does only midrange and high end, not even attempting to compete at the low end. If you look at any manufacturer’s midrange or high end laptops, you’ll see that they’re priced similarly (often even a bit higher) than the comparable Apple laptop.

          • Brian Sprague says:

            I dunno.  I’ve had this discussion before and no kidding, it really is about 2x the price for a Macbook compared to a Windows laptop with similar, often superior processor power, memory, screen resolution, and such.  At least it was in late ’09 when I was shopping and ended up with a Dell Studio XPS.  I’m a huge fan of Apple’s designers and love my iPhone… But the OS and a clean chassis look aren’t worth multiple Benjamins to me.

          • Alpacaman says:

            Lenovo’s Thinkpads (mid-high end laptops, like Macbooks, they are good competition for eachother) are generally still much cheaper that Apple’s equivalent offerings.

        • Matthew, IdeaPads are mediocre computers. Apple just doesn’t make low-end machines that are comparable. 

          Take something that is, like a ThinkPad, and the price differential thins markedly.

          So while it’s true that you can buy computers that are half the price of a MacBook, they’re mostly crummy machines loaded with bloat: which is precisely the problem here. 

          Bear in mind that this thread is not just about the price of computers, but about the state they arrive in after you buy them. You’re getting it cheaper, in part, because an advertiser already bought it.

          • Matthew Cunningham says:

            Unfortunately, the only apples to apples comparisons I can make are on specs. In this regard both computers I compared have the same guts in them. So based on the facts that I have availbale they are the same computer on the inside and their performance is nearly the same. For that matter you can get the same specs in a ThinkPad E420 for $699.

            What I can’t compare are matters of opinion. And when you say the IdeaPads are mediocre, that’s your opinion. All I can say is that you can get a computer for $589 that says IdeaPad on it, for $100 more you can get the same computer that says ThinkPad on it, and for $600 more you can get the same computer with a glowing Apple logo on it.

          • guanto says:

            This is pretty recent th0ugh. My current (pretty snappy i5) $400 Toshiba laptop (no crapware) is above and beyond the plastic MacBook I had (which emitted a loud, high-pitched noise that I am unfortunate enough to be able to hear) in build quality.

        • Cowicide says:

          Umm, no. 2x is usually the rule of thumb. Right now you can get a 13″ Macbook Pro for $1199 with 4GB memory, 500GB hard drive, 2.4 GHz i5 Processor. At Lenovo you can get a IdeaPad Z470 for $589 with 6GB memory, 500GB hard drive, 2.4GHz i5 Processor, 14″ screen.

          The MacBook Pro you compare it to uses a higher end i5 processor.  The MacBook Pro’s 2435M is a little faster than the $589 IdeaPad’s 2430M model.  Also the IdeaPad Z470 comes with the crippled Windows 7 Home edition.   Mac’s Lion OS has no such limitations.  That’s a savings of about $150-200 dollars right there not to mention the time you spend upgrading to Windows 7 Ulitimate.

          So now we’re at about $740.00 for your IdeaPad Z470 if you want to get the OS it comes with to be “on par” with Mac OS Lion.

          Oh… and have fun spending your time removing crapware.  Time is money too.  To think otherwise is foolish.

          The MacBook Pro has a Thunderbolt port which blows everything else out of the water in speed including USB 3.0 (your IdeaPad Z470 laughingly only has USB 2.0) or even eSata.  And even the FireWire 800 beats USB 3.0 in sustained speed, much less USB 2.0 which can’t even hold a candle to it.

          Thunderbolt is coming to non-Mac PC’s later in 2012, it’ll probably cost about 200 dollars for you to get that when it’s finally available (if you can figure out how to get it in your computer at all)

          So now we’re up to roughly $990.00 if you update Windows to be non-crippled and get some jankity thunderbolt upgrade.

          The IdeaPad runs a lot hotter that the MacBook Pro so you’re going to need to purchase a laptop stand (with powered fans) and any decent one that’ll get it to be as (literally) cool as a MacBook Pro runs is going to cost you about $50 with shipping, etc.

          So now we’re up to roughly $1040 and you wasted time with an upgrade of the OS, some jankity thunderbolt upgrade you have to wait to get sometime later this year if you want to match the MacBook Pro I/O speeds and some clumsy laptop cooler stand so it runs as cool.

          Whoops!

          The IdeaPad Z470 has a much shorter battery life.  So you’ll need to buy an extra battery. So that’ll be around $70 with shipping and not to mention yet more wasted time and now you’re carrying around an extra battery along with your laptop cooler stand in your bag.  Wow, this thing is getting less and less portable as we go here.

          So now we’re up to roughly $1110.00 for this IdeaPad Z470 to (sort of) catch up to the MacBook Pro.

          But, it’s also made of flimsy plastic so it certainly isn’t anywhere near as rugged as a unibody, metal MacBook Pro.  There’s really no hope there unless you get something to carry it in to even come close to the durablity of a MacBook Pro especaily when you consider is doesn’t have a MagSafe connection for the power adapter like the Apple product does (so it’s far more likely to go sailing off a coffee shop table when someone inevitably snags the cord).

          But, anyway…  you’ll want to get an Otterbox to at least make a feeble attempt and that’ll cost around 150 bucks with shipping. Wow, this thing is getting HEAVY to lug around.  This is uh, portable, right?  Hahaha….

          So now we’re up to roughly $1260.00 for yet another feeble attempt to “match” the MacBook Pro.

          But, oh wow… there’s more…

          It also has a tiny touchpad so its multitouch is just a weak facsimile of actualy using the MacBook Pro’s vastly superieor and vital touchpad with superb multitouch gestures.  You’re going to need (and lug around) a larger, external touchpad that still won’t be as good as the MacBook Pro’s.. but, hey?  What can you do?

          You’re going to need to get the best of the best to even come close to the one in the MacBook Pro so that’s going to run you about 90 dollars with shipping.

          So now we’re up to roughly $1350.00 for your IdeaPad Z470

          ….and you’re lugging around an external touchpad (that’s still not as good as the Apple trackpad, but at least it’s as large now), An otterbox (that’s still not protecting the IdeaPad when you’re actually using it and it has no MagSafe to protect it from falls either), some future thunderbolt attachment thing they’ll come out with later this year, a cooler stand with fans you lug around if you want the thing to run as cool as a MacBook Pro AND that’ll take up one of your precious USB 2.0 jacks to power it by the way and you’re going to have even shorter battery life that you already do compared to the MacBook Pro.  And, on that note, a spare heavy battery to lug around to match the MacBook Pro battery life.  You’ll probably also want to see a doctor about your back pain from lugging all that shit around.

          Yep, you got a great value there vs. a Mac, huh?

          • Marc Mielke says:

            …and after that, I’ll betcha dollars to donuts they’ll only use it for solitaire and facebook.

          • neckmeats says:

            It’s funny how people can convince themselves of things based on certain social constructions. For instance, “Apple is higher quality”. This leads to what I like to call “The Magic Apple Bit”. It’s that extra bit that everything gets to make it better than everything else. Apple has better graphics – because the “Magic Bit” allows your eyes to see beyond the pure spectral color range provided by all video cards regardless of make/model. Apple has better audio – again, the “Magic Bit” can inject itself into a digital audio stream that all digital sound cards would otherwise be able to produce. Apple has a better processor – the “Magic Bit” is somewhere in the elusive special i5 part number that somehow increases CPU clock frequency to blistering
            “Apple Speed”.

            The funniest thing about all of this talk of superior hardware and higher quality is that we’re talking about a web browser. Yes… your Mac Book. It’s a Web Browser. I figure, if I’m going out of my way to buy some nice computer hardware, and I’m willing to drop some coin on it, I’m going to utilizing that hardware as much as possible. But, for the life of me, I just can’t get facebook to load any faster on my i5 Macbook pro vs my G4 iBook. It’s weird. Maybe this Magic Bit thing is real. Maybe it’s so good that the Magic Bit injected into my G4 is really just as good as the Magic Bit in the i5 and Apple really HAS been superior this whole time. Or maybe it’s just because 99% of the software I want to run (as a normal consumer) like GAMES don’t actually run on the MacOS. You know, the kind of games that would take advantage of the 3D capabilities of a video card like the Nvidia 590 (Are there apple drivers for that card… Hmm…).

            So, with all things considered, sans crap, Apple fans like Apple, non apple fans don’t. Everyone has legitimate reasons for being a fan of what they’re fans of. But, I’m sorry, in Matthew’s defense, if you’re comparing hardware and -just- hardware, you are absolutely paying more for the Apple. To say otherwise is simply denial and plain stupidity. Hearken back to the good old days when Apple fans would always claim that Intel made shoddy hardware (well, of course it was shoddy, Apple didn’t use it, right?!).

            Computers are tools people. And if you like using your tools for playing the latest and greatest games and professional productivity applications, save some money and buy a Windows PC. If you would rather use a tool for browsing the internet, while sipping on some stupid coffee drink at starbucks, with your laptop logo facing the door so you can hope to derive some feelings of superiority from those entering the starbucks (or just to find another fan that can help vindicate your decision to shell out over $1k for a web browser/mp3 player), then buy a Mac.

          • Matthew Cunningham says:

            Wow dude. 

            Actually the 2430m and the 2435m processors run at exact the same speed the only difference is the graphics clock which is 1.2 vs 1.3 GHz respectively. Either way it doesn’t matter unless you play games and even then you are going to have a crappy gaming experience with either version anyway.
            I don’t know what features are missing from the Windows 7 Home Premium edition that make it “crippled” compared to the Ultimate edition or OS X Lion. Hmm, can’t join to an AD domain? Whatever, I don’t see a cost benefit to upgrade to Ultimate so I’ll save that money. Heck for not a lot of money or effort I could just load OS X Lion on it, or even Linux for free. Now we’re talking!

            As far a removing the crapware, it would probably take about an hour to re-install windows or install an alternative OS. Let’s double it to be safe. Since I earn about $70 an hour that means that my time would be about a $140 investment. Of course most of that time could be spent reading or making dinner so I doubt I actually I lost that much but for the sake of argument we’ll leave it at that.

            As far as the Thunderbolt connection goes, there are a total of zero devices that I would want that could take advantage of that kind of throughput. Regardless, the real bottleneck would be the 5400 RPM internal hard drive anyway. I’ll save that money as well. Maybe I’ll wait for hard drive prices to come back down to normal and upgrade to a faster SSD drive. Fortunately I can without dismantling my laptop and having to buy special tools.

            Laptop stand? Really? I’ll skip that too.

            I have never liked touchpads, and the one on the Macbook is no exception. I wouldn’t buy an external one anyway; that would be ridiculous, and I think you know it. I would probably just hook up a mouse if anything.

            I have never seen a laptop that was unplugged unless the user was busy looking for an outlet. But it would probably be a good idea to get a spare battery just in case. But I would probably get a spare if I was getting a Macbook anyway so it’s a wash.

            I have never had a problem with the electrical connector snaging, but I don’t sit around in coffee shops much either. I just don’t get the same thrill of making fun of the guy who is still using an iPhone 3. That’s so 1 1/2 years ago!

            Otterbox? Aren’t those used to protect the flimsy Apple products? I’ll stick with a laptop bag. Probably just use the old one I have.

            So bottom line $580 + Setup labor $140 or less = $720 or less.

            You know what? I wasn’t really in the market for a laptop but I think you sold me on the IdeaPad Z470. It seems like you get a lot for your money especially when compared to Macbook Pro!

          • Cowicide says:

            @neckmeats

            It’s funny how people can convince themselves of things based on certain social constructions. For instance, “Apple is higher quality”.

            I use both Macs and PCs and have real-world comparisons to make with both.  While I stick with the facts, you ironically jump into the very constructions you deride.

            Apple has better graphics – because the “Magic Bit” allows your eyes to see beyond the pure spectral color range provided by all video cards regardless of make/model.

            I made no mention of the graphics.  Framing my points via imaginary conversations isn’t really getting us anywhere, is it?

            Apple has better audio – again, the “Magic Bit” can inject itself into a digital audio stream that all digital sound cards would otherwise be able to produce.

            I made no mention of the audio.  Do you have any facts or do you want to continue to be a victim of your own social constructions?

            Apple has a better processor – the “Magic Bit” is somewhere in the elusive special i5 part number that somehow increases CPU clock frequency to blistering “Apple Speed”.

            Once again.  Facts?  Do you have them?

            The funniest thing about all of this talk of superior hardware and higher quality is that we’re talking about a web browser. Yes… your Mac Book. It’s a Web Browser.

            My MacBook Pro?  Nope.  Not even close, buddy.  As we speak it’s streaming HD video across the wireless network for my friend to our Apple TV (Rise of Planet of the Apes) he’s watching in the other room (and not skipping a single frame) while I’m working in Creative Suite running Photoshop and InDesign at the same time.  Also running Coda and assorted other apps including Transmit.  Oh, yeah… and Safari for web browsing.

            Nice try!

            Your anecdotal experience with your usage of your computer doesn’t apply to everyone else.  Yet again, you are ironically a victim of your own social constructions, aren’t you?

            I just can’t get facebook to load any faster on my i5 Macbook pro vs my G4 iBook.

            If you don’t see Facebook and all its javascript load any faster on an Macbook pro versus a G4 iBook, then you must’ve beaten your imaginary Macbook Pro with a hammer.  I smell BS.  I suspect you really don’t use either.

            What do you really got thar, partner?  A Dell?  Yep, you got a shitty Dell.

            99% of the software I want to run (as a normal consumer) like GAMES don’t actually run on the MacOS. You know, the kind of games that would take advantage of the 3D capabilities of a video card

            Wow, you’re pretty dense running a computer that can’t use 99% of the software you’d like to run.

            By the way, Skyrim plays flawlessly at its highest graphics settings possible (ultra settings) on my MacBook Pro with an i7 in it.

            What else can’t your imaginary Mac do?

            if you’re comparing hardware and -just- hardware, you are absolutely paying more for the Apple. To say otherwise is simply denial and plain stupidity.

            Speaking of plain stupidity.  If you had comprehended what I wrote, I mentioned more than just “hardware”.  I made my points based upon facts.  You’re just (once again, ironically) a victim of your own social constructions.

            And, again, speaking of plain stupidity… you’re not fooling me.  There’s been more than enough times you’ve given yourself away.  You don’t use a Mac.  You’re probably running a Dell as we speak.

            Hearken back to the good old days when Apple fans would always claim that Intel made shoddy hardware (well, of course it was shoddy, Apple didn’t use it, right?!).

            Actually, Apple consistently outperformed Intel back in the day with its PPC chips, etc.  But, I guess pesky things like facts are beneath you, correct?  Apple switched to Intel because they took the lead in mobile architecture.  If Intel chips were faster than Apple’s back in the day I wouldn’t say these crazy things, but I like to stick with facts even if it makes people like you uncomfortable.

            Computers are tools people. And if you like using your tools for playing the latest and greatest games and professional productivity applications, save some money and buy a Windows PC. If you would rather use a tool for browsing the internet, while sipping on some stupid coffee drink at starbucks, with your laptop logo facing the door so you can hope to derive some feelings of superiority from those entering the starbucks (or just to find another fan that can help vindicate your decision to shell out over $1k for a web browser/mp3 player), then buy a Mac.

            I think it’s best if I just ironically quote you after that typical, misinformed drivel you spewed…  ” … It’s funny how people can convince themselves of things based on certain social constructions. … ”

            It’s such a shame Macs don’t have pro productivity applications… haha… 

            How about you try actually using a Mac and intelligently compare the two platform instead of making (very ironic) assumptions based upon FUD?  You’ll look a lot less misinformed in the future at least.

          •  LCD screens vary widely in quality; resolution and light source aren’t the only relevant metrics. If you don’t see the difference between an MBP and a cheap Dell, then the Dell would probably be a better choice for you.As to audio, yes it’s all digital “internally”. But DACs also vary in quality, the most readily apparent manner being noise floor. Again, if you don’t notice the difference, or it that difference doesn’t matter to you, then you’d be a fool to let it influence your buying decision.

            Yes, a computer is only a tool. I find better quality tools to be the better investment. Not everybody does, and that’s cool, too.

          • Cowicide says:

            @Matthew Cunningham

            I don’t know what features are missing from the Windows 7 Home Premium edition that make it “crippled” compared to the Ultimate edition or OS X Lion.

            Home doesn’t have the better security options with things like Bitlocker (that Ultimate has).  Also Home has more limited backup capabilities compared to Ultimate.

            Bitlocker and the better backup capabilities put it more on par with Lion.  Although Lion is actually better with easier, more functional disk encryption and Time Machine blows away Windows 7 backup capabilities.

            So we’re back to where we started.  If you want your machine to at least attempt to approach parity with the Mac machine you need to upgrade from the crippled Home edition to Ultimate.  I was responding to a comparison of a specific Mac and specific PC and their value.  What are you doing?

            Back up to $740.00 (so far) and wasted time upgrading.

            As far as the Thunderbolt connection goes, there are a total of zero devices that I would want that could take advantage of that kind of throughput. Regardless, the real bottleneck would be the 5400 RPM internal hard drive anyway. I’ll save that money as well. Maybe I’ll wait for hard drive prices to come back down to normal and upgrade to a faster SSD drive. Fortunately I can without dismantling my laptop and having to buy special tools.

            Once again, I was responding to comparing the machines in question and which is a better value for the price.  You may not be educated on Thunderbolt;  It’s not just for hard drives.  It massively expands the capabilities of devices including hooking up many external displays to one daisy-chain along with other external devices at ridiculous speeds.  Don’t worry, you’ll be able to get it later this year.

            You also missed the point.  You’re not on parity with the value of the MacBook Pro compared to the IdeaPad Z470 unless you have this.

            Back up to $990.00 (so far)

            Laptop stand? Really? I’ll skip that too.

            Yes, really.  If you want it to run as cool as the MacBook Pro and put it on your lap.  You know, like a “lap”-top or something.  Skip it and you’re no longer getting the same value as the MacBook Pro.  The point of this part of the thread.

            Oh, and one more thing. Hotter computers run slower. Yet another reduction in value for the IdeaPad Z470.

            Once again, the price for the IdeaPad Z470 rises to (lamely) attempt “parity” in value.

            I have never liked touchpads, and the one on the Macbook is no exception. I wouldn’t buy an external one anyway; that would be ridiculous, and I think you know it. I would probably just hook up a mouse if anything.

            I never liked shitty touchpads either, until I used the multitouch trackpad on the MacBook that wasn’t shitty.

            I doubt you’ve had much experience with a touchpad on a MacBook.  You should try it in earnest sometime and you’ll gather a more educated opinion on the device.  There’s a reason nearly every laptop manufacturer is making their touchpads more and more like Apple’s trackpad.  This also includes our IdeaPad Z470 who makes it too small.

            Once again, we’re talking about parity and value.  You have to get an external touchpad to only even barely approach the MacBook Pro and now we’re, once again now up to a higher amount of money for the IdeaPad Z470.

            I have never seen a laptop that was unplugged unless the user was busy looking for an outlet. But it would probably be a good idea to get a spare battery just in case. But I would probably get a spare if I was getting a Macbook anyway so it’s a wash.

            You should educate yourself.  You won’t need the spare battery for the MacBook because it gets longer battery life than the IdeaPad Z470 out of the box.  And if you want to put the laptop on your lap, you’ll need to put it on that laptop stand with fans so you don’t burn your nuts off.

            I have never had a problem with the electrical connector snaging, but I don’t sit around in coffee shops much either.

            We’re comparing laptops.  They’re portable.  If you sit in your house with your portable laptop, you should seriously look into a Desktop machine.

            And, once again… whether you are in a coffee shop or in a business meeting, it doesn’t matter… your cord can get snagged. Your anecdotal track record of never leaving your home with a portable device doesn’t apply to most people that do.

            And, once again, the MacBook Pro with a MagSafe adapter wins.

            I just don’t get the same thrill of making fun of the guy who is still using an iPhone 3. That’s so 1 1/2 years ago!

            Er, you’re losing me here.. Are you talking to me?

            Otterbox? Aren’t those used to protect the flimsy Apple products?

            Ah, you’re either trolling me now or you’re dense and misinformed.  You mean the Apple product that’s unibody and made a metal?

            The same one we’re putting up against the plastic IdeaPad Z470?  Hahaha… you make me laugh, thanks….

            I’ll stick with a laptop bag. Probably just use the old one I have.

            Then, once again, you lose even more attempts at parity and value with the durability of a unibody, metal MacBook Pro with your plastic IdeaPad Z470.

            I’m not sure you’re really getting this, are you?

            So bottom line $580 + Setup labor $140 or less = $720 or less.

            No, in a fantasyland.  You end up with much, much less value than the MacBook Pro.  Reality-land is about $1350.00 to even to start to approach some semblance of parity in value so you don’t burn your balls off and such.

            Plus enjoy all the added weight you lug around.  fun.

            You know what? I wasn’t really in the market for a laptop but I think you sold me on the IdeaPad Z470. It seems like you get a lot for your money especially when compared to Macbook Pro!

            You know what?  I’m sure you’re already bought and sold into anything that already fits into your predetermined mindset no matter how many facts are brought to the table.  Enjoy your IdeaPad Z470 and the next one you buy when that shortly breaks. :D

            Wow dude.

            ?????

          • Cowicide says:

            @google-9b1956a71f731854c88308094ddb5fc3:disqus 

            …and after that, I’ll betcha dollars to donuts they’ll only use it for solitaire and facebook.

            I’ve known people to do that.  Get a MacBook Pro for massive overkill.  Should’a got a MacBook Air… used.

          • Precicely what features would a home-user bother to upgrade win7 home to win7 ultimate for? I think you’re over-reaching.

          • Cowicide says:

            @twitter-14460357:disqus 

            From my previous post:

            Home doesn’t have the better security options with things like Bitlocker (that Ultimate has).  Also Home has more limited backup capabilities compared to Ultimate.

            Bitlocker and the better backup capabilities put it more on par with Lion.  Although Lion is actually better with easier, more functional disk encryption and Time Machine blows away Windows 7 backup capabilities.

            So we’re back to where we started.  If you want your machine to at least attempt to approach parity with the Mac machine you need to upgrade from the crippled Home edition to Ultimate.

            I was responding to a comparison of a specific Mac (13″ Macbook Pro) and specific PC (IdeaPad Z470) and their value.  What are you doing?

            - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - 

            [also I previously made quite a few other points you are selectively ignoring including heat, battery life, durability, lack of thunderbolt, superior time machine backup/versioning, magsafe, Lion's whole-disk encryption, vastly superior trackpad/touchpad (and superior multitouch), etc.]

            Wow…  computer manufacturers love you guys.  Lack of critical thinking skills, stunted reading comprehension, short-sightedness and allergic reactions to facts.  No wonder they keep selling these plastic pieces of shit to you guys.

            IdeaPad Z470:  Save money short term.  Get less value short term.  Lose money mid and long term.

            MacBook Pro: Spend more money short term.  Get more value short term.  Save money mid and long term.

            I backed this up with facts, stats, etc. and there’s much more info out there if you bother yourselves –

            The End.

          • Antinous / Moderator says:

            You know, when I’m scrolling up the queue in the moderation panel, I can always tell your comments long before I get to your name. You would make a terrible sock puppet.

          • Spend more money short term.  Get more value short term.  Save money mid and long term.

            Or you could simply invert it so that it applies to almost every decision: “Spend less money short term.  Get less value short term.  Spend more money mid and long term.”

          • Matthew Cunningham says:

            You’re right about Bitlocker, but if you’re looking for functionality that matches Mac’s
            FileVault then you can always use EFS, which has been available in every version since Windows 2000. As far as backup goes the only difference with Ultimate is that you can backup across the network. I still don’t see the cost benefit to upgrade to Ultimate, not do I see how this somehow is cripples the OS. Regardless, let’s keep this comparison based on the hardware features. Like I mentioned before I’m free to install the OS of my choice so I can get the features that I consider to be of the most value.

            Speaking of value, in my opinion adding interfaces that have no real world applications for
            consumers does not increase the perceived value of a computer. Thunderbolt fits that description. Thunderbolt is a product that is trying to solve a future problem that does not exist. Thunderbolt is a bus that allows for 10Gbit/s up and 10Gbit/s down, which granted is holy shit fast. The problem is that there are no consumer products that can put data on a wire at that rate of speed. Now there are some industrial applications that could utilize this kind of bandwidth such as SAN storage, but the enterprise has already selected other standards such as FibreChannel, InfiniBand, 10Gb ethernet, to name a few. I think it’s highly unlikely that thunderbolt will unseat any of these technologies. That leaves a few niche markets such as video production that will ever use this technology, but then these same niche users are not approaching the theoretical limitations of Firewire 800; which is another product that has failed to reach wide consumer adoption. My prediction, and I’ll bet you a Dr. Pepper on it, is that by the end of 2012, very few PC’s will include a Thunderbolt connection, and there will only be a few niche products that will have materialized on the consumer markets. I’ll even renew that bet for 2013, 2014 and 2015. Just out of curiosity how many Thunderbolt or Firewire 800 peripherals do you own or are planning to buy?

            As far as cooling goes, I doubt you will burn your nuts by using the IdeaPad. I’ll need more evidence before I’ll give you that one. I think it’s disingenuous to imply that all PCs suffer from overheating problems and Macs do not. Surely, overheating problems do exist with specific models or units of both PCs and Macs, but I am not aware of any overheating problems with this particular model IdeaPad. Overheating can also be caused by environmental factors that Macs and PCs are not immune from. I am sure that both manufacturers have warnings about these types of factors and recommend tabletop or desktop use to be the ideal operational environment.

            I’d also like to see some data regarding the failure rate of both models before I can make
            any determination about the durability of either model.

            Although I do have an annual pass to Disneyland, I think it is you who is living in
            Fantasyland. I mean have you ever seen a PC user who had all that extra shit that you described attached to their computers just to keep “parity with Apple?” Most of the PC users I have seen anywhere, conference rooms, seminars, restaurants, wherever, seem pretty happy with a laptop, a mouse, and a bag to carry it in, same as Mac users. Also, if you want to disprove my predetermined mindset based on the facts then by all means PROVIDE some facts.

          • Cowicide says:

            You’re right about Bitlocker, but if you’re looking for functionality that matches Mac’s FileVault then you can always use EFS, which has been available in every version since Windows 2000 … I still don’t see the cost benefit to upgrade to Ultimate, not do I see how this somehow is cripples the OS.

            EFS? Please… That doesn’t match FileVault. I mean, Bitlocker doesn’t even match FileVault but at least it comes closer. The entire point of FileVault is security and EFS lacks that in many ways including the fact it doesn’t wipe plaintext files after they are encrypted and are therefore easily recovered until they are overwritten (which can be a very long time). Also if your Admin account gets hacked they can set whatever DRA certificate they want and later use a public key attack to get in. Not good and not on par with FileVault.

            Trust me, there’s much fun to be had with EFS and it’s at your expense.

            As far as backup goes the only difference with Ultimate is that you can backup across the network.

            And, therefore it is crippled. Mac OS Lion will seamlessly backup across your wireless network to a Time Capsule or whatever else you’d like to use. It’s already “ultimate”, yo. Not to mention Lion’s Time Machine Versioning blows away Windows 7, but there’s nothing you can do about that without spending even more money on a third party solution.

            I mean, not being able to backup across the network really sucks and shame on Microsoft consumers for letting Microsoft pull the trifling shit on them. Macs do this out of the box for anyone who has a Mac.

            Once again. This is about parity and value. If you want more parity and value with the Mac machine out of the box, then you need to purchase Windows 7 Ultimate. And even with Ultimate, you’re still behind, but I digress.

            Like I mentioned before I’m free to install the OS of my choice so I can get the features that I consider to be of the most value.

            You’re also free to install the OS of your choice on the Mac including Windows and Linux. You can even triple-boot with a choice of Linux, Windows or Mac.

            Speaking of value, in my opinion adding interfaces that have no real world applications for
            consumers does not increase the perceived value of a computer. Thunderbolt fits that description. Thunderbolt is a product that is trying to solve a future problem that does not exist. Thunderbolt is a bus that allows for 10Gbit/s up and 10Gbit/s down, which granted is holy shit fast. The problem is that there are no consumer products that can put data on a wire at that rate of speed.

            You should study more on Thunderbolt. It’s just not only “holy shit fast” as you say… it’s also a great way to daisy-chain multiple external displays among other common devices.

            And, once again, this is about parity and value. Whether you believe it or not, Thunderbolt (Light Peak) is coming to non-Mac PC’s this year and Intel is fully supporting it (Intel developed it after all with some Apple tinkering). I’m currently using Thunderbolt with external monitors. It’s great because instead of a bunch of ports on the side of my laptop, I just have this tiny Thunderbolt hole from hell that takes up very little space and can handle much more than displays on the same daisy-chain.

            In this day and age of consumer HD video files, etc. — to say that more bandwidth for transferring data isn’t practical is not looking at reality. Time marches on… it’s 2012 and HD is everywhere on consumer devices.

            As far as cooling goes, I doubt you will burn your nuts by using the IdeaPad. I’ll need more evidence before I’ll give you that one

            Don’t take my word on it, the heat problem has been mentioned in reviews of the product with publications.

            I think it’s disingenuous to imply that all PCs suffer from overheating problems and Macs do not.

            Thanks, but I didn’t imply it. As I’ve been doing (despite what others are doing here)… I’ve been sticking with the machines in question.

            But anyway, my earlier response should clear me of any “disingenuousness”.

            I’d also like to see some data regarding the failure rate of both models before I can make any determination about the durability of either model.

            And use common sense. Look at the materials. One is made of plastic, the other is made of metal with a unibody design. Metal unibody with very few stress points versus plastic non-unibody with multiple stress points.

            Do you also want to get more data on a wet paper bag versus a brick wall?

            Although I do have an annual pass to Disneyland, I think it is you who is living in
            Fantasyland. I mean have you ever seen a PC user who had all that extra shit that you described attached to their computers just to keep “parity with Apple?”

            Your desperate ad hominem attacks aside, [cow pauses, sips Starbucks coffee] you continue to miss the point.

            I’m not saying anyone would get all that extra shit. [cow throws empty coffee cup across Sbux and into trash can]

            The point is you get what you pay for. To claim that the IdeaPad Z470 is a better value than the MacBook Pro is a sucker’s game. They don’t have feature parity and in order to even barely attempt it, you would have to buy and lug around all that shit on top of upgrading Windows.

            Once again:

            IdeaPad Z470: Spend less money short term. Get less value short term. Lose money mid and long term.

            MacBook Pro: Spend more money short term. Get more value short term. Save money mid and long term.

            if you want to disprove my predetermined mindset based on the facts then by all means PROVIDE some facts.

            Already have. :D And, I refer you to my previous posts.

          • Cowicide says:

            @Antinous_Moderator:disqus 

            You know, when I’m scrolling up the queue in the moderation panel, I can always tell your comments long before I get to your name. You would make a terrible sock puppet.

            I resemble that remark.

          • Matthew Cunningham says:

            Bitlocker doesn’t match FileVault? Bitlocker encrypts the entire hard drive. FileVault only encrypts the user’s home folder. EFS can be used to encrypt a user’s profile, which is roughly the same concept of the home folder on Mac’s, which is why I used it for comparison because it can do roughly the same job.

            Now, on to the security holes in EFS you discovered. Sure, if you take an unencrypted file and encrypt it there is a good chance that there will be remnants of the original unencrypted file somewhere in the free space of the drive. If you are using file encryption this way then you are doing it wrong. What you really want to do is to set up an encrypted folder so that everything in it will be encrypted at the time that the files are created. Secondly, the Administrator account can be used to do any number of things like gain access to users files. That’s why it’s the Administrator account. Are you trying to say that you can’t use root on a Mac to change passwords, encryption keys, certificates, and file system permissions? That’s why it’s important to keep these accounts secure. It sounds like you lifted your information from Wikipedia or some other general reference source and are trying to pass it off as technical expertise with no real knowledge on how these things actually work.

            Fine, the Windows backup feature is so crippled that it’s completely unusable because you are limited to backing up using only the most typical scenarios that a user would use. Even then the file versioning is so hard to use because you are forced to right-click the file and click restore previous version.

            I have no doubt that you will see Thunderbolt showing up a few PCs this year, but not many, and even fewer peripherals. In this day and age of HD video the current specifications are more than adequate for the task. The limitation is not the bus that you are using, but it’s the devices you are connecting to it. Your slow-ass 5400 RPM hard drive is capable of transferring data at a max of 40-50 MB/s connecting it to a 10Gb/s bus isn’t going to improve that. Your HD video camera is probably using an even slower 4700 RPM hard drive or maybe it’s using flash memory. If so then you may be able to get 100-150 MB/s out of that. You could upgrade your PC to a nice SSD drive and maybe get a nice SSD external drive be able to transfer data at 400MB/s which 3Gb SATA or USB 3.0 could easily handle. Anyway, my point is that the IdeaPad can handle HD video just as well as the Macbook despite the fact that there is no Thunderbolt on it. Also, it’s clear to me that the Thunderbolt connection is not a value-added feature, buy merely a cost-added feature.

            I think the burden of proof is on you regarding heating problems on the IdeaPad. I Googled “ideapad z470 heat problems” and really didn’t get too much but manufacturer recommendations about clogged or blocked vents and other environmental factors. I didn’t see any articles that specifically cited an actual problem. Why don’t you Google “2011 MacBook heat problems” and let me know what you find out.

            Is metal really better than plastic? Metal is certainly more expensive than plastic. Common sense tells me that I shouldn’t drop a computer regardless of the materials that it’s made from. I have seen plenty of plastic laptops survive well past their usefulness, and I have seen plenty that were beat to shit. Maybe it has more to do with the care and handling. Oh yes, and please give me data about wet paper bag vs. a brick wall because that is certainly relevant to our discussion.

            Desperate ad hominem attacks aside, you’re the one that first claimed I lived in fantasyland, and I simply returned the favor. That’s okay with me because I am sure that we both meant it in jest.

          • Cowicide says:

            @Matthew Cunningham

            Bitlocker doesn’t match FileVault? Bitlocker encrypts the entire hard drive. FileVault only encrypts the user’s home folder. EFS can be used to encrypt a user’s profile, which is roughly the same concept of the home folder on Mac’s, which is why I used it for comparison because it can do roughly the same job.

            You don’t know what you’re talking about. FileVault does, indeed, encrypt the entire hard drive.

            http://www.red-sweater.com/blog/1935/lions-whole-disk-encryption

            Class dismissed.

            Now, on to the security holes in EFS you discovered. Sure, if you take an unencrypted file and encrypt it there is a good chance that there will be remnants of the original unencrypted file somewhere in the free space of the drive.

            You don’t know what you’re talking about. Incorrect… not if it’s wiped instead of simply erased.

            Class dismissed.

            Secondly, the Administrator account can be used to do any number of things like gain access to users files. That’s why it’s the Administrator account. Are you trying to say that you can’t use root on a Mac to change passwords, encryption keys, certificates, and file system permissions? That’s why it’s important to keep these accounts secure.

            You don’t know what your talking about. Please show me where Lion’s FileVault is susceptible to the same kind of attack I previously mentioned?

            Class dismissed.

            It sounds like you lifted your information from Wikipedia or some other general reference source and are trying to pass it off as technical expertise with no real knowledge on how these things actually work.

            It sounds like you are projecting because you don’t even know the basics of how things like FileVault works… ^_^

            Class dismissed.

            Fine, the Windows backup feature is so crippled that it’s completely unusable because you are limited to backing up using only the most typical scenarios that a user would use.

            Face it, I already explained how the backup feature is crippled because it doesn’t work over a wireless network (or otherwise). If you don’t think backing up a laptop over wireless wifi is a “typical scenario that a user would use” then maybe you’re just used to the poor limitations of your poor choice of subpar operating system?

            To whine like an infant and say “no one wants that anyway” is silly. Please, get real. Backing up your laptop (and multiple laptops/computers) via your wireless wifi network isn’t some impractical fantasy. It’s actually a great timesaver if you stop and think about it.

            It’s great because with the Mac, it runs a continuous backup on the fly while you are working on the laptop anywhere in your home or office and it will even allow the versioning aspects of Time Machine to continue to run even while you’re away from your network for up to a couple of weeks or you can seamlessly bring the backup with you. (And don’t forget iCloud)

            This isn’t practical? I seriously hope you’re just kidding at this point.

            I suppose just like cord snagging, you’re also impervious to all forms of untimely data loss?

            You must be some sort of gawd? Hahahaha….

            Go sit in the corner and place the dunce cap on your head.

            I have no doubt that you will see Thunderbolt showing up a few PCs this year, but not many, and even fewer peripherals. In this day and age of HD video the current specifications are more than adequate for the task. … The limitation is not the bus that you are using, but it’s the devices you are connecting to it. Your slow-ass 5400 RPM hard drive …

            You’re kidding, right? You keep dodging around the fact that it’s not just only for hard drives (don’t think I haven’t noticed). I keep telling you this, but you keep avoiding that fact. And, the sad truth you won’t face is that you can upgrade your MacBook Pro to SSD in the future and it’s ready to transfer HD at rates that will destroy your IdeaPad. You can update the IdeaPad and you’re still stuck without Thunderbolt and stuck behind the times. And… once again. Thunderbolt is NOT, I repeat, is NOT just for hard drives. It’s also a way to connect multiple monitors on a daisy chain among many other devices.

            And this also just goes to show how shortsighted you are. If you want to get a future-proof computer, get the Mac. If you want a disposable computer, get the IdeaPad and keep updating it (and/or replacing the machine) and ignore how much money you rack up over time.

            I think you have a predetermined mindset and no facts before you can ever change your mind. This is a waste of my time.

            Class dismissed.

            I think the burden of proof is on you regarding heating problems on the IdeaPad. I Googled “ideapad z470 heat problems” and really didn’t get too much but manufacturer recommendations about clogged or blocked vents and other environmental factors. I didn’t see any articles that specifically cited an actual problem. Why don’t you Google “2011 MacBook heat problems” and let me know what you find out.

            I guess I shouldn’t be surprised that you don’t know how to use Google:

            Review (for you to ignore):
            http://zoomgadget.info/lenovo-ideapad-z470-full-review.html

            Class dismissed.

            Is metal really better than plastic? Metal is certainly more expensive than plastic.

            Ok, at this point you’re just being completely inane and embarrassing yourself.

            School’s over.

          • neckmeats says:

            @Cowicide:disqus 
            It’s insanely easy to troll an Apple fan… lol. Regarless, I posted that using a Macbook Pro by the way. And yes, I use both. Why? Because I’m doing iOS development which requires me to use this thing. So far, by the way, I have noticed no clear advantage of the platform for doing any day-to-day computing tasks. However, I can tell you that the Xcode IDE comes nowhere close to the maturity and power of Visual Studio. I’m sure you have tons of experience with this and should be able to to intelligently and objectively weigh in on this topic
            Now, to specifically address your personal insults…

            I was speaking in general terms in regards to some of the the things that people usually cite as primary reasons for Apple products being superior. I never once had targeted YOU by derailing “facts” or calling you “misinformed”. By the way, I wanted to thank you for how convicted you are in your ability to constantly go out of your way to belittle people for no other reason than to feed your ego and insecurity; I love how you bring people to school with your “class dismissed” proclamations. Maybe what people say is true though… those that “can’t”, teach.  I’d like an apology, but it’s more likely to get an apology for a former 3rd Reich war criminal than from an Apple Fan Boy.  

            Moving on, this thread was supposed to be based on the “new” Microsoft signature line. Which I feel is a great idea. However, it probably won’t really stick since without it, Windows has had a tight (90%) grip on the consumer market share for years. The only people to really complain about the crap/bloatware are enthusiasts who, more often than not, de-brick the machine with a clean install of an OS anyway. That’s something I wish I could do with my Mac since I don’t care for the majority of the Micky Mouse apps it comes with, but that doesn’t really matter since the only thing I run on it is XCode. 

          • Cowicide says:

            Xcode IDE comes nowhere close to the maturity and power of Visual Studio

            It’s common knowledge that many developers prefer VS over XCode. But it’s also common for many PC developers to whine about using XCode simply because they don’t know how to properly develop on the Mac.

            I hope I don’t give you cognitive dissonance because I agree that Visual Studio has advantages over XCode. Will your poor pea brain explode?

            It’s insanely easy to troll an Apple fan… lol.

            You’re doing it wrong. I called you out as a troll already. All you’re doing now is admitting it. Jeez, you really are that dense, aren’t you?

            I don’t like liar trolls who claim to have used Macs when they haven’t.

            Bye, troll. ^_^

          • neckmeats says:

            @Cowicide:disqus 
            Hahaha – yes, I do admit to trolling you… and it’s still fun, since you keep coming back. But, to address some “point” you were trying to make about PC (I’m assuming you mean Windows) developers complaining about XCode because they “don’t know how to properly develop on the Mac”. I think you wanted to say that most Windows developers don’t like Objective-C  with Cocoa because that requires some knowledge of OSX. The XCode IDE has nothing to do with properly developing anything. Now see, here is where I could completely insult you by judging the size of your brain or whatever it is teenagers do to piss on each other. But I won’t. There’s no need. A douche is a douche does… but in this case though, that douche isn’t improving the smell coming out of your hole very well.

          • Matthew Cunningham says:

            I stand corrected on the FileVault. My only experience with it was with 10.6 which at that time only encrypted the home folder. I apologize for the confusion. Oh, and thanks for providing some supporting documentation on this one rather than claiming I’m ignorant

            As far as EFS goes, I agreed with you on that point about wiping the plaintext, but that only applies if you first created the document unencrypted first. The point I was adding was, which you conveniently ignored, was that the correct way to use EFS is to create an encrypted folder so that all data is encrypted from the outset. Here is a link to a technical reference that explains EFS in greater detail. http://books.google.com/books?id=yZX2uAoAagwC&pg=PA178&lpg=PA178#v=onepage&q&f=false

            I realize another mistake I made in this discussion was by not rejecting the premise that a PC user is forced into upgrading to Windows Ultimate thus significantly adding to the cost of the PC, or that a PC user is somehow locked into using Windows at all. This is why I keep letting you lead me into these comparisons on software features.  Anyway, an IdeaPad user can install OS X if they want rendering your OS feature parity arguments moot.

            I am 100% serious about my views on Thunderbolt. If you think I am not then why not accept my Dr. Pepper bet? As far as ignoring other types of applications for Thunderbolt goes, I really don’t see any consumer uses besides hard drives. There will be no printers, scanners, keyboards, mice, webcams, etc. that will be available with Thunderbolt. There will be a few other devices such as audio/video equipment, sound recording equipment, and other industrial devices that may or may not be adopted on a wide scale, but this goes back to few niche industrial purposes I described before. This really only leaves one other consumer category of devices, hard drives, but like I said before the current standards are more than adequate to the task for consumers and will continue to be for years to come.

            Ah, but you’re using it for your monitors you say? Nope, you’re really using it as a display port connector. You see, that was Apple’s contribution to the specification, taking Light Peak and sharing it with a mini DisplayPort connector. This “one port to rule them all” concept is really just a fantasy created by marketing hype, and parodied by IBM’s famous “Universal Business Adapter” ad 10 years ago.

            As far as predetermined mindsets go, that’s all you buddy. In our entire conversation all you have done is made overreaching statements and arguments based on false premises, completely failed to explain your position or provide any substantial references, and when all else fails you make petty and dismissive comments. In the two times that you have provided any kind of facts, you have only been correct once. The one time you were right was with FileVault which I have already conceded.

            Now, on to the review that you provided, BTW thanks for providing this because I know it’s hard for you to provide documentation. I am going to assume that zoomgadget.info is a reputable source of information. On the whole this looks like a glowing review for this laptop. They even give kudos for the IdeaPad’s touchpad which you deride. The only negative part, which is the part you wanted me to read, was that the bottom area of the keyboard gets hot after 30 minutes of heavily burdened use. That sounds pretty normal. They didn’t say it got uncomfortably hot, or that the system was overheating. In fact they said that under all this heavy use that the laptop was able to work without a hiccup. This doesn’t sound like it’s the unstable and slow overheating nut-sack burning laptop you were claiming it to be at all. Anandtech did some performance tests on the MacBook under heavy load and guess what? It gets hot too! You can see their data in the link below.

            http://www.anandtech.com/show/4205/the-macbook-pro-review-13-and-15-inch-2011-brings-sandy-bridge/14

            While I am sure that this review doesn’t indicate that there is a problem with the MacBook heating problems, even just doing a cursory search on Google, or even Apple’s own user support community, reveals many, many users complaints about heat.

          • Cowicide says:

            @Matthew Cunningham

            Similar to the troll named “neckfat” or whatever, you keep ignoring the majority of my previous points/facts made in previous posts and instead focus like a laser on minor distractions from the major issues that affect the actual value of the two products.

            I’m sorry you two have so much trouble dealing with being wrong. ^_^

            And, poor “neckmeat” can’t even cope with the fact I said I agreed with him that VS has advantages over XCode (which is yet another anecdotal, trite distraction anyway). Cognitive dissonance is taking its toll on him. Hahaha….

            I stand corrected on the FileVault. My only experience with it was with 10.6 which at that time only encrypted the home folder.

            It really keeps coming back to the fact that you and neckfat don’t have enough real-world experience with a Mac to have an informed opinion on the topic, doesn’t it?

            ^_^

          • Matthew Cunningham says:

            No it really comes down to the fact that I can graciously admit the one time that I was wrong in this thread. You on the other hand have to resort to name calling and pedantic nincompoopery. You have my pity. Farewell.

          • Cowicide says:

            No it really comes down to the fact that I can graciously admit the one time that I was wrong in this thread.

            One time?  You’re very gracious to “someone”. 

            Yes, yes… very gracious…

          • Matthew Cunningham says:

            Shall I assume that since you have no more content to add to the discussion you are withdrawing from the debate?

    • Cowicide says:

      2-3x the price for a Mac

      [citations sorely needed]

      Here’s one of mine: http://boingboing.net/2011/10/13/asus-zenbook.html#comment-334149134

      Also, time is money, son.  Screwing around with a broken computer is wasted time.  And, that’s if you’re lucky and don’t have to keep buying new ones.

      • A few years ago I’d just bought my first new laptop, a 13″ white Macbook. When a friend was shopping for a laptop a couple weeks later I had him convinced that buying one of those was worth the extra cash versus the cheapest thing he could find at WallyWorld. Then he called me one night and told me about this awesome deal he’d just gotten at WallyWorld, and it was almost $300 cheaper than the Mac.

        I think he got nearly six months total use out of that HP, and never more than about 1.5 hours of battery life. He finally got them to buy back the dead carcass for $200 after the third warranty repair. I sold that 13″ Macbook a year ago, and it’s still going strong.

    • EH says:

      just because you can get a junky e-machines laptop for $300 doesn’t mean Apple costs 2-3x.

    • Guest says:

      And it’s also going to be a perfectly fine machine after 3 years online. PCs notoriously lose performance over the long run.

      And macs are not actually 2x to 3x more expensive. That is a canard and lazy research. The price difference at the low end is because mac doesn’t sell a sub-basement end product.

    • AnthonyC says:

      Unless you buy your own retail copy of windows, that isn’t going to work.
      The reinstall disks OEMs give you? They include all the original crap.
      Making your own recovery disks? Ditto. I’ve done it, no use.
      Reinstalling from the “recovery partition” most OEMs now create? Same.

      • Scott Frazer says:

        And on a lot of laptops the drivers for things like sound and ethernet aren’t standard enough to be included on the retail Windows installation disk, so you’ve got to download them from the manufacturer and reinstall them manually after the install.

        That’s a problem for Macs running Windows, too, but Apple supplies an all-in-one driver CD for you with Boot Camp.

  2. Sam says:

    dunno, I think the current iLife is boarderline crapware and linux? well that depends on the distro surely?

    • WilliamRayner2 says:

      Not really, iLife is a really useful suite of home software and doesn’t cripple your computer’s performance.

    • Cowicide says:

      Sam, have you ever really used a Mac? As Rayner stated, iLife isn’t remotely considered crapware by anyone who has actually used a Mac and also understands the definition of crapware.

      If you don’t like iLife, simply don’t use any of the iLife apps. Unlike actual crapware, it will never nag you to use it, use up your system processes and bog down your machine at all.  It’s amazing how much ignorance surrounds Mac products.

      Crapware is:

      • Usually licensed for use only on the computer on which it was pre-installed, and is not transferable to other computers.

      • Often functionally or time limited, in an effort to get the user to purchase the “full” version.

      • Often does not come with any media, should the user need to reinstall it.

      • Sometimes modifies or replaces the default browser or system settings, in an effort to target specific advertisements to the user; or may otherwise contain functionality the user might consider to be malware.

      • Often consumes system resources, even if not actively being run by the user, adversely affecting system responsiveness and startup time.

      • Sometimes difficult or impossible for users to remove, such as via the standard uninstall utility provided by the system.

      Not iLife.

      • Guest says:

        but mac is crap because so many people who don’t have them say so. 

      • Sam says:

        I do like your list, the first item does apply to iLife but most of it reminded me of iTunes.

        Yes, I have the current iLife but don’t use it much. I think I first started using at iLife 06 which worked really well. The current iPhoto I dislike over Picasa, and for me iMovie is to simple to do complicated stuff and to communicated to do simple stuff. But maybe that’s me being lazy after being so use to final cut pro. 

        I use windows 7, snow leopard and occasionally linux. Adobe Creative suite on windows 7 seems to work better than on osx for us, and post production 3d rendering/editing on our linux system is unmatched by windows or apple platforms.

        • Cowicide says:

          I do like your list, the first item does apply to iLife

          No, it doesn’t.  It’s FREE with any new Mac.

          but most of it reminded me of iTunes.

          Then there’s something drastically wrong with your Mac.  iTunes is completely optional and won’t run unless you launch it.  You can use alternative mp3 players or otherwise at any time on your Mac.

          You’re not forced to use iTunes at all (and yes you can even sync with iPods, etc. with third party products).  Not even close to the definition of crapware.

          The current iPhoto I dislike over Picasa

          Then use Picasa.  I use Photoshop and Adobe Bridge instead of iPhoto.  But please explain to me how this compares in any way to pervasive crapware that slows down your Mac?  Because it doesn’t.

          Adobe Creative suite on windows 7 seems to work better than on osx for us

          In what way?  I’ve used CS5.5 on both platforms and found that it works great (overall) on the Mac OS and there’s even more features with Mac because of better multitouch capablities, etc.

          For a while, CS wasn’t 64bit on Mac, but it was at a time when RAM was so expensive it didn’t really matter.  CS has been 64bit on Mac for quite a long time now.

    • Guest says:

      I’ve never once used an iLife product. When I turned my machin on for the first time it basically directly asks you “are you into this stuff, or should I never ask again?” and you clearly can say no and there is no forced use…. which is exactly the point of this post. 

  3. They come with Zune and “Bing Optimization”. Not exactly no-crapware!

  4. This is like a supermarket having one checkout that doesn’t have shelves of sweets by it. “We know how annoying it is, so we now give you the option! The other eleven checkouts remain loaded with stuff your kids will demand.”

    • Eric Hutton says:

      Only if the supermarkets took 25 cents off your bill for shopping in that line with all the ads and temptations!

  5. AirPillo says:

    At least with a desktop you can also just assemble your own computer and install the OS yourself. Not a thing is installed that you don’t want (even with windows), and if you’re a clever shopper it’s also reasonably cheaper than buying an assembled computer.

    As for laptops, just make sure you know what your product key is, make an OS install disk, and reformat the sucker for a fresh install.

    I agree, though, it is pretty awful that the default condition for a pre-made computer is to arrive addled with problems that the customer must fix themselves before they can even comfortably use it.

    • Lupus_Yonderboy says:

      You can build your own “whitebook” laptops as well, that’s what I did a few years ago. It’s not as “from scratch” as building a desktop but I chose my own processor/type and amount of RAM/type and size of harddrive/wireless card. Took me about half an hour and a screwdriver to build it, another half an hour to install Linux Mint and I was good to go.

  6. Jorpho says:

    Oh, really now.  Maybe the comparatively tiny handful of people using Arch or Slackware or Linux From Scratch can claim to know exactly what’s gone into their system.  Maybe.

    Everyone else has a Linux installation that is bound to include many things that they don’t really need and that aren’t necessarily particularly well-written, either, just waiting to interfere in mysterious ways with some situation that the distro-makers didn’t plan on.  Crapware-free, indeed.

    • m1kesa1m0ns says:

       actually, if you choose the distro wisely, it’s easy for laypeople to select only the basics. Outside of the native distro channel apps can easily be excluded. And what comes with a well-designed distro are things like a GUI and printing system, not broken versions of crappy antivirus software.

    • kartwaffles says:

       If I want to run a system with hand-selected components built from the ground up, it’s going to be BSD every time. Linux is for when I just want to grab a distro and run with it.

    • It’s not just about desired applications, but what the undesirable ones get up to.

  7. Erik Gilson says:

    Uh why not just install RevoUninstaller when you first get the computer and remove all the bloat. Or you can buy computers that have no OS installed on them, and just buy a copy of whatever OS you want that is completely clean.

    Plus they are likely to charge more for those systems because they dont have the crapware on them. Companies like AOL pay them to put their software on your systems so that subsidizes the cost of the systems, and i doubt any company is going to let you get away paying the same price as everyone else.

    • That’s a good recommendation, but you really shouldn’t have to go to those lengths to clean your computer if you paid more than a pittance for it.

    • AnthonyC says:

      This is good advice, but sometimes I’m not even sure what is bloat and what isn’t. More than once I’ve uninstalled what appeared to be junk only to realize it took my webcam or touchpad features with it, and now I can’t capture video or sound/ can’t scroll or use multitouch gestures.

  8. splashu says:

    Linux definitely has the leg up but of course you have the choice of exactly how much you WANT loaded on them, but that comes with extra research and effort. To say that Macs come ‘without extra cost’ is a bit misleading though, considering how much more expensive they are than Windows PCs (I think the ‘Apple tax’ could neatly be justified for this reason). 

    I look at cheap Windows PCs from companies like HP/Acer/Whoever the same way I look at Ad supported games and websites. The cost stays lower because they’re able to dump whatever they want on it. You can remove it without much trouble most of the time. I still think it’s obnoxious but if you don’t want to spend $1200 on a decent laptop you have to accept that there is some compromise.

  9. cameronhorsburgh says:

    I don’t quite get why Microsoft would be buying machines with crapware installed in the first place.

    Next thing you know, the OEMs are going to get caught installing illegal copies of the OS.

    • TombKing says:

      Like all big companies they do, sorta. On delivery they get taken out of the box, wiped and have a company image installed so it does not matter what crapware was installed.

  10. Roxy Chaney says:

    “Each PC includes Windows 7, Windows Live Essentials, Zune software, Internet Explorer with Bing optimization”

    Yeah, I don’t know where I’d be without Zune and IE… lol

  11. nixiebunny says:

    My son got one of these for xmas. It did save some time removing the crapware, as all we had to remove was IE with Bing optimization and the Zune stack.

  12. Eric Hutton says:

    OSX “crapware free”?  At no extra cost?  Ha Ha… it’s funny because it is so not true.

  13. kartwaffles says:

    “We call this process Microsoft Signature”

    I call the process “checking the hardware compatibility list first, then reformatting the hard drive and installing whatever the heck I want. Gosh!”

  14. Hugh Stimson says:

    As a Mac antagonist normally I would step in here to defend PCs as a better value and free from the design defects of Mac OS.

    But I yield the field in this case. The incentive for OEMs to beef up their marketing bullet points with useless applications is a unmitigated failing. And the fact that these “signature”, supposedly crapware-free computers come with Zune just hammers that point home.

    (Zune is fine software by the way, but it’s not for everyone and requires a Zune market account, unavailable in some countries, to fully function. Why stick it on everyone’s computer?)

    The argument that you can “just” reformat and re-install the operating system is kinda silly. How many computer users are comfortable with those steps and don’t mind losing those hours?

    I find it a challenge to run a true reformat on a Windows machine these days, and I’ve been doing it since 3.0.

  15. Teirhan says:

    Stickers!? i love stickers!

  16. dculberson says:

    U NO GOOD BIAS JURNALSM.

  17. Conspirator says:

    A while back I bought a Sony laptop directly from their website. If you opted for the $50 upgrade to Windows 7 Pro there was a free option called “Fresh Start” that meant it came without bloatware.  Considering what I’ve seen on some cheap PCs, it was worth the $50 upgrade cost to have that option.

    • I looked into this a few weeks ago and not a single model at SonyStyle had the option available. I kind of find it offensive, though, to have to pay extra for a clean install. It’s the naked truth shining though — that other companies paid to buy advertising on that laptop, and you have to make up the difference if you don’t like it.

      • Conspirator says:

        That sucks that they’ve removed that.  It’s been over a year and a half since I got mine though.  Keep in mind I did get an updated OS for that fee, having no crapware was a no-cost option at that point, so it’s not so bad.  Still it’d be nice if it was always an option.  

      • Marc Mielke says:

        It’s a lot like buying food and finding out that the restaurant throws in a big lump of shit in with your food. Then they charge extra to not include the side order of feces.

        Come to think, it’s exactly like that.

        • Stephen Rice says:

          It’s more like finding out a restaurant has been paid to put a massive dollop of dodgy greasy chilli on top of whatever you order and you have to make it worth their while to not put it on.

  18. Nadreck says:

    Now if only Word would come without two dozen “helpful” features which I have to hunt down and kill before I can start typing at 30 wpm without the level of spelling and grammar mistakes which they impose.

    • perchecreek says:

      There is a variety of open source word processors that are at this point equivalent to or better than Microsoft Word.  Given that their authors are not encumbered by fealty to “markets”, such programs are usually free of most marketing driven “features”. They have the benefit that one need not pay rent to a proprietor to gain access to ones intellectual output, and the benefit of being tailorable to niche needs. One can choose Libreoffice, a monolithic office suite similar to Microsoft Office, or something like Abiword, which is a sweet, compact word processor.

      Open source programs also have the advantage of not being bound to a manufacturer subject to competitive spats, hence, they tend not to fail mysteriously on competitors’ platforms, and they are usually ported to desktop environments agnostically and ubiquitously. I should note that LibreOffice has made a great deal of progress since being freed (via fork of OpenOffice) from Oracle’s suffocating administration.

  19. dxx says:

    “no extra cost” and “OS X” really shouldn’t be in the same sentence. I certainly have no problem suggesting Mac to my less tech savvy friends due to how simple they are to use and how few issues they tend to have, but you’re paying a ton of mark-up for the Apple logo.

    If you ask me, OS X is an opportunity cost problem. Pay more for not having to do anything with it or spend a few hours getting Ubuntu to be exactly what you want – for most people, the former’s a much better option.

    • “how few issues they tend to have, but you’re paying a ton of mark-up for the Apple logo”

      So I guess it’s the logo that prevents the issues?

      • Spieguh says:

        You mean I can take a cheap-ass PC, slap one of my extra Apple logo stickers on it, and turn it into a solid, bloatware-free computer instantly? dxx is really onto something!

    • ialreadyexist says:

      When you compare identical machines (component vs component), Macs aren’t really that much more expensive than high-end name-brand PCs of similar quality.  Yes, there’s a markup, but it’s not nearly as bad as people try to make it out to be.  This is especially true if you just purchase a base Mac and upgrade the drives and memory yourself. 

  20. Daemonworks says:

    My primary complaint is still that windows has a much, much broader software selection. There’s a few things out there that only run on mac, but there’s a LOT of good stuff out there that’s windows-only.

    Mostly unlreated: I’m still annoyed that people insist on using “PC” to mean “computers with windows” instead of “personal computer”.

  21. I’m writing this from a bottom-end Acer Aspire One netbook (admittedly not a full-powered laptop, but that wasn’t the use-case).  Cost me £260.  First thing I did was wipe it and install Ubuntu.  It now runs faster and the battery lasts longer.  With the money I saved I bought an SSD and a memory upgrade, so it’s now faster still.

    Linux FTW.

    …although my first thought on reading this is a Bond quote, from Live and Let Die.

    Bond: Tell, him no ice, would you?

    Barman: That’s extra, man…

  22. If you want a Linux laptop and leave in the US, you can sometimes get rid of the cost of the microsoft license, if you buy it over the phone. However it will have a lower battery life based on Phoronix testing.

  23. RJ says:

    01. Buy the computer you want
    02. Nuke & pave
    03. Enjoy

    If that’s too much for you, then you’re at the mercy of the OEM providers and computer repair shops.

  24. caipirina says:

    Last time my dad bought a PC, it only took him 6 months to get that thing so virus infected (even with current AV software) that he paid some specialist to get that machine cleaned up … Since he is on a mac … no problems. (I changed from PC to mac 11 years ago … and have no regrets, other than maybe SJ is dead and who knows where they are headed now) 

    • RJ says:

      Tell your dad that if he’d lay off the shady porno sites, he wouldn’t have to spend three times as much for a computer.

  25. Guest says:

    Apple’s foisting of their “App Store” on the OSX user is a really insidious bit of crapware on their part because a user is pushed to use the App Store application (I deleted mine AND iTunes) since they were onerous to use.  I am also sticking to using Snow Leopard (10.6) for the immediate future since the latest release is a step in the wrong direction too, IMHO.

    This sort of use of software to manipulate what is put on a computer is the real “crap-ware” experience.

  26. Based on the comments here I would have to conclude that the average Windows user is much more concerned about the fact that Macs suck than they are about the crapware pre-installed on their own computers. (And maybe just a little bit butthurt that they can’t afford one, even though they really don’t want one, and can’t possibly imagine why anybody else would.)

  27. SummerFang says:

    Wow, people still have this Mac v. PC debate?

  28. Mark Simpson says:

    Hah, it comes with bing optimisation, windows live essentials (mostly rubbish.  Windows Live Writer is great, but still, how many people _actually_ blog and, even if they did, why do they need this software choice forced down their throat?) and — here’s the hilarious thing — Zune software?  No crapware?  Nice idea, but credibility: Zero.

    • inwoodguy says:

      And Macs come with GarageBand, iCloud, iTunes (talk about bloated crapware), iMovie, QuickTime, Safari, Mac App Store and a whole lot of other stuff the average user will rarely (or never) use.  Macs don’t have crapware?  I beg to differ!

  29. Gil Shabtai says:

    The funny thing is that not only do people still have the Mac v. PC debate, but that there are actually Mac people who still think it is better. 
    Hardware-wise Macs have not been better in any cost/benefit test I’ve seen for about 20 years. 
    Software-wise, the only people I know who think Mac is better are either from the academy or the writing community. Even the Graphic-design/CAD communities have mostly converted to PCs. 
    It is true that Apple’s reign of the mobile gadget is slowly bringing crowds to the laptops and Macs, but that is not a result of objective comparison. It is a result of habit and desire for all of one’s gadgets to work together. 
    Which should bring us back to the main issue of using computers: ease of use. I’ve been supporting Mac and PC users for ages, and what was surprising in the past, but is clear now, is that for more than 10 years now, I keep getting more troubles with Mac users. Problem is that these are zealous people (as can be deduced from the debate above), and it won’t matter how many times you explain that some of the problems they have been experiencing with the recent upgrades from Apple are just unheard of in the Windows world, they refuse to convert, to the great dismay of the ones trying to provide technical support…

    • albee says:

      I work in New York as a freelance web developer and often work with graphic designers. I know of exactly zero graphic design studios that have switched to Windows. Architects and industrial designers who use CAD software have traditionally been on Windows, although recently, industry standard CAD software has been released for the Mac and a lot of these folks are thinking about switching. A lot of it has to do with the industry, but for the most part, graphic designers, web designers, musicians and photographers, as well as writers, still prefer the Mac by an overwhelming margin. To say that “Graphic design/CAD communities have mostly converted to PC” (read Windows) is wrong on at least three counts: 1. Graphic designers are still 99% Mac; 2. CAD users have not switched—they’ve always been on Windows; 3. “…converted to PCs.” Well, they’re all PCs, aren’t they? Some run Mac, some run Linux, and most of the rest run Windows.

  30. Dennis Smith says:

    I always run a copy of DeCrapifier on any new PC. Doesn’t take too long, and you can usually do it while getting the windows updates in the background.

  31. Jose says:

    This is amusing.  So, the company that bundles a bunch of crap in their OS that most people don’t need is now selling computers that are “specially tuned” to not have extra crap that people don’t need.  Bwahahahahahahah!

    Microsoft Signature PCs, brought to you by the company that insists an Internet browser is part of the operating system.

  32. inwoodguy says:

    Apple is right when they say “it’s all about the apps.”

    All major apps — browsers, Office, even Adobe Suite — are written on Windows first and occasionally ported to the Mac weeks, months or even years later. Plus, every year, hundreds of thousands of new apps are written only for Windows.  The Mac OS X software market is dead — hardly any new software is written, to the point where Apple stopped giving out Design Awards for Mac software since there isn’t any new software being developed outside of Apple itself. 

    Thus, Windows wins, every time, by Apple’s own advertising logic.

    And that’s why a PC — “signature” or standard — is a better choice. More software, lower prices, better UX.

    • albee says:

      Well brianinwood, I’m afraid you are quite mistaken. I have used Adobe Creative Suite ever since CS 2, and individual products, like Photoshop, Illustrator, etc., since before then and never in the last 20 years have I seen a new version of Adobe creative software (with the exception of Acrobat) released first for Windows. And Microsoft has its own Mac development division, the Mac BU, and they have released Office for Mac with advanced features not matched in the concurrent Windows versions several times. If you’re talking about the enterprise, the financial industry or mainstream PC gaming, then I concede your point, but otherwise, not true. Apparently, you have never heard of the Mac App Store, which, quite contrary to your post, has actually enabled a resurgence of apps for Mac OS (including lots of games, by the way), many of them exclusive to the platform (two developers of great Mac software come to mind: Panic and The Omni Group). So Mac software is not only far from dead, it is actually ramping up and enjoying somewhat of a renaissance. Also, by the way, Apple is selling more Macs than ever before, so someone is buying these things and buying software for them. The market for PCs is enormous, so even single digit market share for a platform (Mac OS is somewhere around 5–6% worldwide) creates a viable and lucrative market for software developers. As for your conclusion, there’s no question that there is way more software made for Windows, and that PC OEMs cater to the lower ends of the market, so you can get started on Windows for less, but as far as “better UX” is concerned, I suppose there’s no accounting for taste :)

      • inwoodguy says:

        You are aware that the Adobe CS for Mac is a port from Windows, right?

        And there are undeniably very few active Mac developers. Most popular applications (especially games) either don’t get released for Mac at all, or get released months or years after the Windows versions.

        The Mac App store is loaded up with old titles as well. For instance, one of the showcased games in the store is from 2004 (Airline Tycoon). There are so few actively-developed titles that Apple literally has to go back a decade and grab old PowerPC titles to fill the gaps in the App Store.

        Sorry, if it’s “all about the apps,” Macintosh loses. Badly.

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