When we started developing Quince I thought we’ll need a Mac to be able to test it in OS/X. I finally had a good excuse to get a Mac! It was a good decision, because it was useful while developing Quince (more about that here), but I´m not happy with it at all.
To make it short, it's pretty bad as a Windows machine. My main concerns:
- The amount of heat the Mac produces when running Windows is unbelievable. Is like using a laptop with a Pentium 4 before we got the 'Mobile' processors.
The same happens when you do any CPU-intensive task like watching a movie. If are using OS/X you can use FanControl to make the Fan work harder when it gets warmer, which makes it bearable. I did not find an alternative to use when booting Windows that runs as well.
- I use VMWare/Bootcamp. From times to times, when booting in Bootcamp, I lose the Windows activation and I need to activate it again. As I have a corporate Windows license that needs to be activated with a KMS, it's not a simple task. Actually, the way I usually do it does not work right now, so I cannot boot Bootcamp.
- The wireless connection drops. The way it ended up working for me is to hide the wireless status icon from the menu bar (!!!), but it still gets a worse signal than the rest of the laptops in the office. There are several threads about this in the support site at apple.com.
- In Windows you can tweak almost every setting using the UI and if not, you can probably fix it tweaking the registry. In OS/X you have much smaller number of settings in the UI. You can tweak it from the unix shell, but I'm not good enough with it to be able to do it.
- Even if you can emulate most of the Windows keys, it´s not the same as having a Windows keyboard. For example, if you are not using an external mouse, one way to right-click is doing ctrl+click, which on a PC I always used to open a link in a new tab. Also, there's no 'delete' key, there's one called 'delete' that is actually backspace. You can emulate it with Fn+Delete. I also make mistakes during Cut and Paste, as in OS/X is Command+C/P and in Window Ctrl+C/P.
- AFAIK, OS/X does not have concept of 'Uninstall'. Some applications do provide a way to do it, but others don't. I had an issue with a driver for a 3G Modem and I could not uninstall it until I found a thread that described how to do it by manually deleting/editing some files.
- AFAIK there's no IM client that supports video/voice chats with MSN Messenger users. The Microsoft version only supports text. I did not get good Video/Voice quality while using Messenger inside the VM. This means I'm only using Skype lately, which has a good OS/X client.
- Mac Office is not as good as Windows Office. Entourage in particular is much worse. I also miss the Ribbon when working in Word/Excel. I find myself using Office in the Windows VM most of the time.
On the other hand, when running OS/X for internet surfing and digital media managing, I got a nice experience, probably better than Windows'. But that's not what I need to get my work done.
So, if you are a Windows developer feeling tempted to switch to a Mac, my advice is to not to do it. On the other hand, I love my iPhone and I strongly recommend it to everyone.