I am considering whether to make my next work computer an apple mac. Doers anyone know whether VT is compatable with an apple mac and if so what spreadsheet software I would have to buy?
I think you'll always have compatibility problems with a Mac, even if they offer you an emulator or something like that. Thinhs like that never work as smoothly as promised, and it is one extra layer of complexity to go wrong.
What if, after buying the Mac, you find you need another programme that is not compatible with it?
Don't believe the hype from the Apple fanboyz; Apple products are overpriced and not especially good. They are pretty though.
I use a Mac as I believe it has a more secure operating system than Windows. VT, like a lot of accounting software, will not work with Macs unless you get additional software like Windows for Mac or Parallels or use the emulation mode as the previous correspondent suggested. I use Parallels and have had very few problems with it. It's not very expensive either.
If you get Parallels you will be able to use Excel if you already have it. Otherwise I would suggest Open Office which is very similar and can if I remember correctly be downloaded for free .
Yes Macs are far more expensive than PCs when you compare the specs, but they do have real advantages - and they do look nicer too!
I did say in my comment that they are pretty. I have never heard of any other convincing advantages of a Mac though, although I did hear the OS described as the OS that pats you on the head and says "There, there, don't you worry your pretty little head about that; I'll make that choice for you".
Windows software (and that includes VT) will NOT run on the Macs OSX operating system. Macs are pretty, and the build quality is excellent. If a friend or relative asks me to recommend a home computer, I'll recommend an Apple. It'll look gorgeous, its easy to use, and VERY reliable and stable. Little extras like the iLife software also ensure you can do all of the typical 'home computer' things very painlessly.
Apples use the same Intel processors as a PC, and the same hard disks and memory suppliers as PC manufacturers - so don't think there's some special magical fairy-dust hardware inside an Apple that makes it stand out. What makes Apples so highly regarded is the operating system (OSX) and the manufacturing quality of things like the casing, screen, etc,
The fact remains that business software for Apple is pretty thin on the ground. There are maybe one or two UK-compliant bookkeeping products available, and there are NO professional accounts prep or tax products.
So - to run pretty much any accounting software, you'd need to buy and install Windows onto your Mac hardware (using one of the 'virtual machine' applications already mentioned). And, if you're doing that - what's the point of spending the extra money for a Mac? You're just ending up with a well built Windows PC again.
Don't forget that you still have to pay for that copy of Windows, so now you've shelled out for TWO operating systems for your shiny new computer - one for home use, and one to use for work.
Decide what it is about Apple that you really value, and maybe you can find a PC that will do the job for much less cash.
- HP and Sony both produce some very well built hardware if that's your concern. Some of HP's laptops even look pretty much like an Apple!
- Windows 7 is an order of magnitude more stable and secure than previous versions of Windows (in two years of daily use, Windows 7 has NEVER crashed on me and I've not had a single virus incident). If you've been using Windows XP, then you're getting a very outdated view of Windows.
A great piece of advice that all Apple fans should take.
I am a totally confirmed Apple geek, so let's get that out of the way first.
Reason I use Apple computers is primarily ease of use. I do run an emulator when necessary, but only for those very rare occurrences when I a client sends me something which only Windows will read. But I just hate Windows ... compared to the Mac OS I find it sluggish, prone to viruses and such stuff, and just plain nasty. But my wife has no problems with Windows, even though she also prefers and recommends Macs. They tend to work straight out of the box. If you like Windows, then this is obviously a non-issue for you.
And there are two other major issues for me. Equipment longevity, on which Macs score highly, and, since I use my computer all the time for work, it has to be a nice beast, something I enjoy using, rather than something I have to constantly fight. Oh, and Microsoft Office for Mac reads and writes exactly as for Windows, so no compatibility problems there.
However, if you are thinking of buying Apple, watch out for its latest operating system Lion ... it has some very good points, but it is also, in my opinion, the worst operating system it has ever released. Good points are virtually instant-on operation, instant resume at whatever point you left your computer, automatic saving to sequentially aged "versions" of everything you do (if using Apple or other supported software). But in my opinion it is trying to make a desktop Mac into a portable device with all the finger-swiping etc which work brilliantly on an iPhone, but don't translate too well to the desktop.
Worst point about Macs is they are not user-serviceable (well, at least not for most people), but the good point is that they last and last and last, so this is rarely a problem.
If in doubt, just look at the Mac reviews on Amazon, where you get in the main hugely glowing reviews from previous Windows-users.
BUT - If you can't actually run the professional software you need to use, what's the point? Microsoft Office is there for both, but how do you use that Mac to produce a set of statutory accounts or a tax return?
It's like a farmer deciding to buy a nice BMW instead of a new tractor. All very well, but not much good if you've got a field that needs plowing.
I've seen my friends struggling to set up their Mac equipment. My Windows equipment always straight out of the box. That's what I like about Windows, it just works.
I think that a lot of people are missing the point, or are afraid of technology. Interestingly, that last bit fits me, but so many people now rightly tout emulation as the key to software. Whether that be cloud computing, GoogleDocs, or Parallels on a Mac, it's all basically the same ... if you want to run Windows software on a Mac, there isn't anything which won't work, as long as you use emulation such as Parallels, dual booting, VM FusionWare, or whatever. And these new Macs are blindingly fast, so emulation appears to have little effect on processing power.
It's a bit like having the best of both worlds. A 4x4 that's as good off road as it is on.
It's interesting how many people are concerned about how their car looks/performs, how their wife looks, etc, but not how their computer looks/performs. And most of us spend more time with our computers than practically anything else. OK, so that's a very dodgy point, but let's face it, when I got married I waited till I got the sexiest wildest bestest gorgeoustest female on the planet (sorry all you other guys, she's taken!). And sure, Macs don't get anywhere near that, but if you have to work on a computer, at least get something you like. And me, I just don't like Windows. If you do, no problem, and don't bother to get near a Mac ... they can subvert and convert even the stoutest Windows user.
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