Top 30 mistakes made by new Mac users

ellenfeissThe Unofficial Apple Weblog has posted a short story on the top five mistakes made by new mac users. It includes closing an application window, thinking it has quit, downloading software and then running it from the disk image (runs slowly, can’t eject disk image), Windows .EXE files littered around the desktop after they’ve tried to download software and install it.

The comments attached to the article are entertaining, and pick up many other common mistakes.

The thing that strikes me is that most of these problems could be resolved by Apple. For example, when a user downloads an EXE file, Safari could easily give the user a quick warning that it’s a Windows program and won’t install on Mac. (Before you say, “ha! What if it’s in a ZIP file?” Safari already checks inside ZIP files to see if something is a “program” that Safari should give a security warning about.)

Here’s a precis list of things that TUAW and its users said in comments, and a few of my own:

1. Closing an application window, thinking it has quit.

2. Downloading an app and running it from the disk image.

3. Creating endless untitled folders

4. Using Safari’s Google search to get to a website

5. Confusing the concept of wallpaper with screensaver

6. Double-clicking a window thinking it will maximise it, but instead sending it to the dock

7. Not understanding the usefulness of column view and leaving everything in icon view

8. Not using any keyboard shortcuts

9. Thinking that now they’ve got rid of Windows they won’t have problems of _any_ sort on their Mac

10. Renaming desktop icons to random characters because they don’t understand the difference between the enter and the return key on Mac. (Enter puts an icon into rename mode).

11. People trying to find the menus on a window, not realising they’re always at the top of the screen

12. Trying to resize windows from the edge rather than the drag area on the corner

13. Trying to use the CTRL key rather than CMD key for shortcuts.

14. Thinking it’ll be easy to get a stuck CD out.

15. Installing a program every time they want to run it because they think the installer _is_ the program.

16. Where’s “the internet”? (looking for the Windows Internet Explorer “e” icon)

17. Repeatedly hitting the Apple key expecting the Apple menu to pop up (confused with Windows Key and Start Menu concept)

18. Thinking the green “+” button maximises a window to full screen (not realising that Apple’s maximise philosophy is to only make a window as big as it needs to be to comfortably fit the width of content currently being displayed)

19. Looking in vain for an uninstaller app, because they don’t realise that uninstalling an application on Mac is as easy as dragging the program icon into the trash.

20. Minimising windows all the time rather than using “hide”, leaving the document section of the doc littered with forgotten minimised windows (that are quietly occupying system resources).

21. Double-clicking dock icons.

22. Inadvertant click-drags and removing programs from the dock in the process.

23. Saving everything to the desktop or somewhere on the hard drive other than their home folder

24. Trying to load documents or programs multiple times because they don’t recognise the progress indicators (sound of hard drive grinding, CD spinning, Mac spinning beachball, browser status bar)

25. Not understanding that the dock is used to both launch and return to a program …

26. Inability to work with multiple documents on-screen at the same time, because they have only ever learned to use Windows’ maximise mode which always makes everything full-screen

27. Confusing “delete” with “backspace” (because Apple has two keys named “delete” on the keyboard, one of which does forward delete and the other backward delete. Way to go, usability geniuses).

28. Expecting “home” and “end” keys to go the beginning and end of a line, rather than beginning and end of a document.

29. Not realising that when you copy a folder over an existing one, OS X -replaces- the destination folder rather than merging the contents, which is what Windows does.

30. Looking for the “complicated” way of doing everything. For example, trying to go into system preferences and right-clicking on the networking icon in order to find available wireless networks, rather than just clicking on the Airport icon in the menu bar and selecting the relevant wireless network.

Advertisements

262 Replies to “Top 30 mistakes made by new Mac users”

  1. Good list, it pretty much sums up all the annoyances I’ve run into running a mac for the first time. As to number 23, it drives me insane that if I just want to “open” a document from the web rather than download it, my Mac insist on saving a copy to the desktop and I have to do regular cleanups to get rid of them. Have these idiots ever heard of a temp folder that gets emptied on a regular basis?

  2. Good list, it pretty much sums up all the annoyances I’ve run into running a mac for the first time. As to number 23, it drives me insane that if I just want to “open” a document from the web rather than download it, my Mac insist on saving a copy to the desktop and I have to do regular cleanups to get rid of them. Have these idiots ever heard of a temp folder that gets emptied on a regular basis?

  3. Please. The vast majority of these are Windows problems that the Mac doesn’t have, but switchers are used to dealing with; others I’m unconvinced that they apply. How many non-power-users make frequent use of the forward delete in any OS? Still others are not even Mac-specific, but simply non-power-user errors: not using key shortcuts, misnaming icons (enter AND return initiate renaming), and so on.

  4. Please. The vast majority of these are Windows problems that the Mac doesn’t have, but switchers are used to dealing with; others I’m unconvinced that they apply. How many non-power-users make frequent use of the forward delete in any OS? Still others are not even Mac-specific, but simply non-power-user errors: not using key shortcuts, misnaming icons (enter AND return initiate renaming), and so on.

  5. The #1 mistake all new Mac users make is to fail to turn off the “leave messages on server for one week” option in Mac mail so their pop mailbox goes over quota after their friends send them a bunch of forwards with videos of people getting hit in the crotch with footballs.

  6. The #1 mistake all new Mac users make is to fail to turn off the “leave messages on server for one week” option in Mac mail so their pop mailbox goes over quota after their friends send them a bunch of forwards with videos of people getting hit in the crotch with footballs.

  7. Uhh… these are hardly “usability” problems with OS X.

    OS X is NOT WINDOWS, and should not be expected to behave like it (since a lot of these “complaints” are more Windows usability-isms than Mac)

    1. Closing an application window, thinking it has quit.
    >> Thats not how Macs work, its document focused not App focused… most Mac users leave programs running because they do things while not “open” and also it starts up faster, why close iTunes? Browser? etc. Closing a Window doesn’t mean you are done with the program

    2. Downloading an app and running it from the disk image.
    >> maybe, although many programs say “drag into apps” or whatnot… I never had this problem when I was a new user (this year, after 19 years of PCs)

    3. Creating endless untitled folders
    >> huh?

    4. Using Safari’s Google search to get to a website
    >> again? what? not exclusive to OS X

    5. Confusing the concept of wallpaper with screensaver
    >> umm… come on. again not just OS X

    6. Double-clicking a window thinking it will maximise it, but instead sending it to the dock
    >> Mac desktop paradigm is not one with fullscreen apps. As resolutions rise, it both makes more sense to have multiple apps showing at all times, and more convenient. Apps that have true fullscreen modes are usually command + F or have a button for it. “maximizing” is usually done by the + button to size the window to the most the content inside requires if the resolution can accomodate it, but this is not something that is at fault for OSX. OS X has the dock + expose to efficiently handle multiple open programs, where Windows and Linux do not have such an efficient way to handle so many open programs, thus fullscreen for Windows, and not for Mac

    7. Not understanding the usefulness of column view and leaving everything in icon view
    >> I guess…

    8. Not using any keyboard shortcuts
    >> again, not an OSX flaw.

    9. Thinking that now they’ve got rid of Windows they won’t have problems of _any_ sort on their Mac
    >> well, they’ll have less 😉

    10. Renaming desktop icons to random characters because they don’t understand the difference between the enter and the return key on Mac. (Enter puts an icon into rename mode).
    >> who presses enter to open an app?

    11. People trying to find the menus on a window, not realising they’re always at the top of the screen
    >> again, Windows-ism doesn’t mean OS X flaw.

    12. Trying to resize windows from the edge rather than the drag area on the corner
    >> maybe, but since most windows don’t have hard grippable edges not really a big deal I don’t think

    13. Trying to use the CTRL key rather than CMD key for shortcuts.
    >> another Windows-ism… a bad one, CMD is much easier to hit when you are typing already and don’t have to move your whole hand… I can’t stand going back to ctrl on Linux now.

    14. Thinking it’ll be easy to get a stuck CD out.
    >> er, depends on your drive?

    15. Installing a program every time they want to run it because they think the installer _is_ the program.
    >> I don’t understand this at all

    16. Where’s “the internet”? (looking for the Windows Internet Explorer “e” icon)
    >> E != Internet, nuff said.

    17. Repeatedly hitting the Apple key expecting the Apple menu to pop up (confused with Windows Key and Start Menu concept)
    >> again OS X not Windows

    18. Thinking the green “+” button maximises a window to full screen (not realising that Apple’s maximise philosophy is to only make a window as big as it needs to be to comfortably fit the width of content currently being displayed)
    >> err yeah

    19. Looking in vain for an uninstaller app, because they don’t realise that uninstalling an application on Mac is as easy as dragging the program icon into the trash.
    >> …

    20. Minimising windows all the time rather than using “hide”, leaving the document section of the doc littered with forgotten minimised windows (that are quietly occupying system resources).
    >> haha, I notice people doing this too, just shows they have to learn the system

    21. Double-clicking dock icons.
    >> I know people who double click web links..

    22. Inadvertant click-drags and removing programs from the dock in the process.
    >> uh

    23. Saving everything to the desktop or somewhere on the hard drive other than their home folder
    >> well, finder opens to your home folder, its not OS X’s fault that Windows doesn’t have such an ingrained way of managing your files like unix/linux home folders

    24. Trying to load documents or programs multiple times because they don’t recognise the progress indicators (sound of hard drive grinding, CD spinning, Mac spinning beachball, browser status bar)

    25. Not understanding that the dock is used to both launch and return to a program …

    26. Inability to work with multiple documents on-screen at the same time, because they have only ever learned to use Windows’ maximise mode which always makes everything full-screen

    27. Confusing “delete” with “backspace” (because Apple has two keys named “delete” on the keyboard, one of which does forward delete and the other backward delete. Way to go, usability geniuses).
    >> I guess

    28. Expecting “home” and “end” keys to go the beginning and end of a line, rather than beginning and end of a document.

    29. Not realising that when you copy a folder over an existing one, OS X -replaces- the destination folder rather than merging the contents, which is what Windows does.

    30. Looking for the “complicated” way of doing everything. For example, trying to go into system preferences and right-clicking on the networking icon in order to find available wireless networks, rather than just clicking on the Airport icon in the menu bar and selecting the relevant wireless network.
    >> Windows problem not OS X

    I mean… I guess these can be mistakes, but I don’t think they are usability issues (don’t know exactly if you said that but DIGG did I believe) I was quite the Windows power user, and after a year on a Mac now, I really appreciate these differences in usability. It just makes more sense when you use it fulltime vs most people who use a Mac once in a blue moon and assume its crap when its not the same Windows way of doing things.

  8. Uhh… these are hardly “usability” problems with OS X.

    OS X is NOT WINDOWS, and should not be expected to behave like it (since a lot of these “complaints” are more Windows usability-isms than Mac)

    1. Closing an application window, thinking it has quit.
    >> Thats not how Macs work, its document focused not App focused… most Mac users leave programs running because they do things while not “open” and also it starts up faster, why close iTunes? Browser? etc. Closing a Window doesn’t mean you are done with the program

    2. Downloading an app and running it from the disk image.
    >> maybe, although many programs say “drag into apps” or whatnot… I never had this problem when I was a new user (this year, after 19 years of PCs)

    3. Creating endless untitled folders
    >> huh?

    4. Using Safari’s Google search to get to a website
    >> again? what? not exclusive to OS X

    5. Confusing the concept of wallpaper with screensaver
    >> umm… come on. again not just OS X

    6. Double-clicking a window thinking it will maximise it, but instead sending it to the dock
    >> Mac desktop paradigm is not one with fullscreen apps. As resolutions rise, it both makes more sense to have multiple apps showing at all times, and more convenient. Apps that have true fullscreen modes are usually command + F or have a button for it. “maximizing” is usually done by the + button to size the window to the most the content inside requires if the resolution can accomodate it, but this is not something that is at fault for OSX. OS X has the dock + expose to efficiently handle multiple open programs, where Windows and Linux do not have such an efficient way to handle so many open programs, thus fullscreen for Windows, and not for Mac

    7. Not understanding the usefulness of column view and leaving everything in icon view
    >> I guess…

    8. Not using any keyboard shortcuts
    >> again, not an OSX flaw.

    9. Thinking that now they’ve got rid of Windows they won’t have problems of _any_ sort on their Mac
    >> well, they’ll have less 😉

    10. Renaming desktop icons to random characters because they don’t understand the difference between the enter and the return key on Mac. (Enter puts an icon into rename mode).
    >> who presses enter to open an app?

    11. People trying to find the menus on a window, not realising they’re always at the top of the screen
    >> again, Windows-ism doesn’t mean OS X flaw.

    12. Trying to resize windows from the edge rather than the drag area on the corner
    >> maybe, but since most windows don’t have hard grippable edges not really a big deal I don’t think

    13. Trying to use the CTRL key rather than CMD key for shortcuts.
    >> another Windows-ism… a bad one, CMD is much easier to hit when you are typing already and don’t have to move your whole hand… I can’t stand going back to ctrl on Linux now.

    14. Thinking it’ll be easy to get a stuck CD out.
    >> er, depends on your drive?

    15. Installing a program every time they want to run it because they think the installer _is_ the program.
    >> I don’t understand this at all

    16. Where’s “the internet”? (looking for the Windows Internet Explorer “e” icon)
    >> E != Internet, nuff said.

    17. Repeatedly hitting the Apple key expecting the Apple menu to pop up (confused with Windows Key and Start Menu concept)
    >> again OS X not Windows

    18. Thinking the green “+” button maximises a window to full screen (not realising that Apple’s maximise philosophy is to only make a window as big as it needs to be to comfortably fit the width of content currently being displayed)
    >> err yeah

    19. Looking in vain for an uninstaller app, because they don’t realise that uninstalling an application on Mac is as easy as dragging the program icon into the trash.
    >> …

    20. Minimising windows all the time rather than using “hide”, leaving the document section of the doc littered with forgotten minimised windows (that are quietly occupying system resources).
    >> haha, I notice people doing this too, just shows they have to learn the system

    21. Double-clicking dock icons.
    >> I know people who double click web links..

    22. Inadvertant click-drags and removing programs from the dock in the process.
    >> uh

    23. Saving everything to the desktop or somewhere on the hard drive other than their home folder
    >> well, finder opens to your home folder, its not OS X’s fault that Windows doesn’t have such an ingrained way of managing your files like unix/linux home folders

    24. Trying to load documents or programs multiple times because they don’t recognise the progress indicators (sound of hard drive grinding, CD spinning, Mac spinning beachball, browser status bar)

    25. Not understanding that the dock is used to both launch and return to a program …

    26. Inability to work with multiple documents on-screen at the same time, because they have only ever learned to use Windows’ maximise mode which always makes everything full-screen

    27. Confusing “delete” with “backspace” (because Apple has two keys named “delete” on the keyboard, one of which does forward delete and the other backward delete. Way to go, usability geniuses).
    >> I guess

    28. Expecting “home” and “end” keys to go the beginning and end of a line, rather than beginning and end of a document.

    29. Not realising that when you copy a folder over an existing one, OS X -replaces- the destination folder rather than merging the contents, which is what Windows does.

    30. Looking for the “complicated” way of doing everything. For example, trying to go into system preferences and right-clicking on the networking icon in order to find available wireless networks, rather than just clicking on the Airport icon in the menu bar and selecting the relevant wireless network.
    >> Windows problem not OS X

    I mean… I guess these can be mistakes, but I don’t think they are usability issues (don’t know exactly if you said that but DIGG did I believe) I was quite the Windows power user, and after a year on a Mac now, I really appreciate these differences in usability. It just makes more sense when you use it fulltime vs most people who use a Mac once in a blue moon and assume its crap when its not the same Windows way of doing things.

  9. > 4. Using Safari’s Google search to get to a website

    Bah, I do that all the time in (my preferred) browser, and it is good that way. And I have my special reasons for doing it. I consider it advanced usage. This is not a fault. I think this should be removed from the list.

  10. > 4. Using Safari’s Google search to get to a website

    Bah, I do that all the time in (my preferred) browser, and it is good that way. And I have my special reasons for doing it. I consider it advanced usage. This is not a fault. I think this should be removed from the list.

  11. “Uhh… these are hardly “usability” problems with OS X.

    OS X is NOT WINDOWS, and should not be expected to behave like it (since a lot of these “complaints” are more Windows usability-isms than Mac)”

    hey jerk! read the title! this isnt a bash on OSX, so put your swords and shields away. this article points out the mistakes that users make, not flaws of the OS necessarily.

  12. “Uhh… these are hardly “usability” problems with OS X.

    OS X is NOT WINDOWS, and should not be expected to behave like it (since a lot of these “complaints” are more Windows usability-isms than Mac)”

    hey jerk! read the title! this isnt a bash on OSX, so put your swords and shields away. this article points out the mistakes that users make, not flaws of the OS necessarily.

  13. Yes, almost every one of these is completely bogus and ridiculous. I won’t waste time showing how they’re all invalid; others have done a fairly good job. This is a completely ridiculous posting.

  14. Yes, almost every one of these is completely bogus and ridiculous. I won’t waste time showing how they’re all invalid; others have done a fairly good job. This is a completely ridiculous posting.

  15. Wow, some of you mac fanatics can be vicious…

    The point of this article is not to point out flaws in OSX, necessarily, it’s just to point out the ways that it differs from windows(/gnome/kde) that might confuse mac newcomers.

    The real flaws in OSX are the ones that you can’t really see just from looking at the ui… for instance. My main gripe about OSX is that they don’t even bother to use /etc (along with parting from almost everything else that makes unix ‘unix’). And to that I say, what a waste.

  16. I think #25 should be in the top 5. Very common for just about everyone who is adjusting to the Mac. And #20 is up there too.

    On #27, Apple does mark the right-delete key with a directional arrow. They are right to call both left and right-delete as “delete” because they both remove things. Whereas “backspace” is somewhat of a misnomer.

    Items 22 and 23 are really Windows problems also.

    If I could have Apple change anything, it would be to group folders at the top of every column-view in Finder. Otherwise the “app shelf” at the top and the “folder shelf” at the left allow me to do whatever fancy stuff I was used to under Windows or KDE.

    That, and I would have Expose deal with minimized windows.

    Finally…. I think ALL desktops should adopt a special icon overlay for the display of all executables. If its an executable, the user should be able to discern it immediately (superimpose the icon with a red circle, say).

    Trojan viruses would become an endangered species as they could no longer pose as jpg files.

  17. Wow, some of you mac fanatics can be vicious…

    The point of this article is not to point out flaws in OSX, necessarily, it’s just to point out the ways that it differs from windows(/gnome/kde) that might confuse mac newcomers.

    The real flaws in OSX are the ones that you can’t really see just from looking at the ui… for instance. My main gripe about OSX is that they don’t even bother to use /etc (along with parting from almost everything else that makes unix ‘unix’). And to that I say, what a waste.

  18. I think #25 should be in the top 5. Very common for just about everyone who is adjusting to the Mac. And #20 is up there too.

    On #27, Apple does mark the right-delete key with a directional arrow. They are right to call both left and right-delete as “delete” because they both remove things. Whereas “backspace” is somewhat of a misnomer.

    Items 22 and 23 are really Windows problems also.

    If I could have Apple change anything, it would be to group folders at the top of every column-view in Finder. Otherwise the “app shelf” at the top and the “folder shelf” at the left allow me to do whatever fancy stuff I was used to under Windows or KDE.

    That, and I would have Expose deal with minimized windows.

    Finally…. I think ALL desktops should adopt a special icon overlay for the display of all executables. If its an executable, the user should be able to discern it immediately (superimpose the icon with a red circle, say).

    Trojan viruses would become an endangered species as they could no longer pose as jpg files.

  19. Yeah, that’s probably because they’re used to PCs. If you get used to an illogical, a logical one will seem weird. End of story.

  20. Yeah, that’s probably because they’re used to PCs. If you get used to an illogical, a logical one will seem weird. End of story.

  21. I didn’t have much trouble with the switch and I think a number of your problems are problems that newbie users of any OS will have (e.g., “Not using keyboard shortcuts”, “Thinking the internet is the ‘e'”).

    Mind you, the maximising thing and closing windows instead of apps puzzled me for a bit, as did getting used to CMD instead of CTRL. One you missed which I had trouble with is CMD-Tab switches apps in OS X whereas in Windows it will cycle through all windows regardless of which app it is for. I subsequently found out that CMD-` (just above Tab) will cycle through windows within an app which is very handy.

  22. I didn’t have much trouble with the switch and I think a number of your problems are problems that newbie users of any OS will have (e.g., “Not using keyboard shortcuts”, “Thinking the internet is the ‘e'”).

    Mind you, the maximising thing and closing windows instead of apps puzzled me for a bit, as did getting used to CMD instead of CTRL. One you missed which I had trouble with is CMD-Tab switches apps in OS X whereas in Windows it will cycle through all windows regardless of which app it is for. I subsequently found out that CMD-` (just above Tab) will cycle through windows within an app which is very handy.

  23. I got my first mac (mini 1.42) in about april 2005
    I’ve been a windows user since 1997, and a linux user since 2000 and consider myself a fairly proficient computer user.
    when I first got the mac I did 6, 7, 10 (I hit enter, but noticed and hit escape), 12, 13, 19, 20, 28, 30. but most of these I figured out pretty quick and only did once or twice, so I was past the really arkward stage in probably about a week.
    unfortunately, because I am still going between windows, linux, and mac all the time there are still some mistakes on the list that I make… 10 (see above), 13, and 28.
    but conversely I now find myself trying to use winkey+c to copy on windows machines from time to time, also alt+left/right for jumping around a word at a time instead of ctrl+left and right on windows

    as to number 1, that’s my biggest gripe with the mac.
    not that it doesn’t quit, rather that some apps DO quit. iPhoto 05 for example. also the azureus bittorrent client, and the xchat-aqua irc client

  24. I got my first mac (mini 1.42) in about april 2005
    I’ve been a windows user since 1997, and a linux user since 2000 and consider myself a fairly proficient computer user.
    when I first got the mac I did 6, 7, 10 (I hit enter, but noticed and hit escape), 12, 13, 19, 20, 28, 30. but most of these I figured out pretty quick and only did once or twice, so I was past the really arkward stage in probably about a week.
    unfortunately, because I am still going between windows, linux, and mac all the time there are still some mistakes on the list that I make… 10 (see above), 13, and 28.
    but conversely I now find myself trying to use winkey+c to copy on windows machines from time to time, also alt+left/right for jumping around a word at a time instead of ctrl+left and right on windows

    as to number 1, that’s my biggest gripe with the mac.
    not that it doesn’t quit, rather that some apps DO quit. iPhoto 05 for example. also the azureus bittorrent client, and the xchat-aqua irc client

  25. I’m sure that most of these tips are valid IF you are coming from another OS. Double clicking to maximize, E for internet, menubar etc..

    But if your a new user to computers not OSX you wouldn’t even know about these “details”. This is NOT a mistake for new users to OSX but new users migrating to OSX.

    I think easly half of the 30 items are OS vs OS issues and not new users to computer “world”.

    The title of this document should be Top 30 mistakes made by new migrated users to MAC.

  26. I’m sure that most of these tips are valid IF you are coming from another OS. Double clicking to maximize, E for internet, menubar etc..

    But if your a new user to computers not OSX you wouldn’t even know about these “details”. This is NOT a mistake for new users to OSX but new users migrating to OSX.

    I think easly half of the 30 items are OS vs OS issues and not new users to computer “world”.

    The title of this document should be Top 30 mistakes made by new migrated users to MAC.

  27. Although I’m not too pleased with some of the Mac users’ ferocity, The article *does* indeed suggest that these are MacOS X problems when it includes the following line: “The thing that strikes me is that most of these problems could be resolved by Apple.”

    On the other hand, I agree with this sentence, except with one key word: “MOST.” No, Mr. Warne, certainly not “most” of the problems are OS X problems. Actually, the only problem I see where Apple has blatantly messed up is the one you mention right after that sentence: “For example, when a user downloads an EXE file, Safari could easily give the user a quick warning that it’s a Windows program and won’t install on Mac.” Other than that, the rest are mere differences in behavior that any computer user will have to deal with when using an OS (s)he isn’t familiarized with, as more than enough people have already mentioned.

    I think these lists are good for recent switchers who are still adapting to their new environment. Nothing wrong with a little education, guys, so there’s no need for these Mac-(overly)enthusiasts to get all fired up. If you’re gonna insist that new users simply need to get accustomed to the OS X environment and behaviors, then don’t go around making a big fuss every time someone makes a list of this nature (ie. not making OS X sound like something perfect).

  28. Although I’m not too pleased with some of the Mac users’ ferocity, The article *does* indeed suggest that these are MacOS X problems when it includes the following line: “The thing that strikes me is that most of these problems could be resolved by Apple.”

    On the other hand, I agree with this sentence, except with one key word: “MOST.” No, Mr. Warne, certainly not “most” of the problems are OS X problems. Actually, the only problem I see where Apple has blatantly messed up is the one you mention right after that sentence: “For example, when a user downloads an EXE file, Safari could easily give the user a quick warning that it’s a Windows program and won’t install on Mac.” Other than that, the rest are mere differences in behavior that any computer user will have to deal with when using an OS (s)he isn’t familiarized with, as more than enough people have already mentioned.

    I think these lists are good for recent switchers who are still adapting to their new environment. Nothing wrong with a little education, guys, so there’s no need for these Mac-(overly)enthusiasts to get all fired up. If you’re gonna insist that new users simply need to get accustomed to the OS X environment and behaviors, then don’t go around making a big fuss every time someone makes a list of this nature (ie. not making OS X sound like something perfect).

  29. Just a tad bit of an elitist. Keep in mind that every platform has its very own idiosyncrasies.

    5. Confusing the concept of wallpaper with screensaver
    uhhhh, right…..

    7. Not understanding the usefulness of column view and leaving everything in icon view.
    Now, sometimes people need their Crayola’s; windows user too.

    8. Not using any keyboard shortcuts.
    Hmmm… the one button mouse must have inspired that choice.

    14. Thinking it’ll be easy to get a stuck CD out.
    Surprised that their is no comment about it being a cup holder. You must be holding back. Tisk, tisk.

    16. Where’s “the internet”? (looking for the Windows Internet Explorer “e” icon)… Now come on; ya missed the cup holder; now the E is the Net…. Lets be a little consistant…

    29. Not realising that when you copy a folder over an existing one, OS X -replaces- the destination folder rather than merging the contents, which is what Windows does.

    Well actually the same thing happens in Windows or Linux or BSD… You replace the folder. Now, copying the contents will merge the two.

    “I mean… I guess these can be mistakes, but I don’t think they are usability issues (don’t know exactly if you said that but DIGG did I believe) I was quite the Windows power user, and after a year on a Mac now, I really appreciate these differences in usability.”

    Power user? You must be joking…… How would you harden windows TCP/IP stack against a DDOS attack? O’ Please, power user my sweet hard drive. You guess these can be mistakes… such an elitist….

  30. Just a tad bit of an elitist. Keep in mind that every platform has its very own idiosyncrasies.

    5. Confusing the concept of wallpaper with screensaver
    uhhhh, right…..

    7. Not understanding the usefulness of column view and leaving everything in icon view.
    Now, sometimes people need their Crayola’s; windows user too.

    8. Not using any keyboard shortcuts.
    Hmmm… the one button mouse must have inspired that choice.

    14. Thinking it’ll be easy to get a stuck CD out.
    Surprised that their is no comment about it being a cup holder. You must be holding back. Tisk, tisk.

    16. Where’s “the internet”? (looking for the Windows Internet Explorer “e” icon)… Now come on; ya missed the cup holder; now the E is the Net…. Lets be a little consistant…

    29. Not realising that when you copy a folder over an existing one, OS X -replaces- the destination folder rather than merging the contents, which is what Windows does.

    Well actually the same thing happens in Windows or Linux or BSD… You replace the folder. Now, copying the contents will merge the two.

    “I mean… I guess these can be mistakes, but I don’t think they are usability issues (don’t know exactly if you said that but DIGG did I believe) I was quite the Windows power user, and after a year on a Mac now, I really appreciate these differences in usability.”

    Power user? You must be joking…… How would you harden windows TCP/IP stack against a DDOS attack? O’ Please, power user my sweet hard drive. You guess these can be mistakes… such an elitist….

  31. Gotta love the Ellen Feiss picture. I’d switch anytime for her, if I would have been a PC user in the first place. Great internet saga. Hehehe, sorry if that was off topic.

  32. Gotta love the Ellen Feiss picture. I’d switch anytime for her, if I would have been a PC user in the first place. Great internet saga. Hehehe, sorry if that was off topic.

  33. Your list is fucking stupid and so typical of Mac people. Hardly any of those items are mistakes. Just different ways of doing things on Microsoft Windows. Mac computer users are the ones who make the mistake of allowing Steve Jobs to control their computing life. I would suggest that you take a look at Linux and you will see that it is better in every way. Steve Jobs and his merry band of Lemmings like the Blogger at this site should all just jump off a fucking cliff and die.

  34. Your list is fucking stupid and so typical of Mac people. Hardly any of those items are mistakes. Just different ways of doing things on Microsoft Windows. Mac computer users are the ones who make the mistake of allowing Steve Jobs to control their computing life. I would suggest that you take a look at Linux and you will see that it is better in every way. Steve Jobs and his merry band of Lemmings like the Blogger at this site should all just jump off a fucking cliff and die.

  35. I would kind of like to see a list of common mistakes by new Mac-to-Windows users:

    1. Click “Start” to shut down (!)
    2. Untrusted programs install themselves over the internet
    3. You *can’t* run a program from a disk image; you have to install it with a 15-step ‘wizard’
    4. Talking paper-clip knows more about document creation than you do
    5. Ctrl-Q only works in some programs, as do Ctrl-W, Ctrl-Tab, et. al.
    6. Windows Media Player only has a menu bar when you mouse certain parts of it
    7. Wireless networking? BWWAAAAAHHHAAAHAHAHAHA!!!!
    8. Bluetooth? BWWAAAAAHHHAAAHAHAHAHA!!!!
    9. Nvidia drivers worthless after 3 weeks
    10. Computer infected immediately without costly add-on software
    11. Random programs hijack autoplay functionality
    12. Audio-CDs install rootkits
    13. What’s a ‘backslash’ again?
    14. Program requires DirectX 9c, is it already installed?

    Man, that list could go on for quite a while.

  36. I would kind of like to see a list of common mistakes by new Mac-to-Windows users:

    1. Click “Start” to shut down (!)
    2. Untrusted programs install themselves over the internet
    3. You *can’t* run a program from a disk image; you have to install it with a 15-step ‘wizard’
    4. Talking paper-clip knows more about document creation than you do
    5. Ctrl-Q only works in some programs, as do Ctrl-W, Ctrl-Tab, et. al.
    6. Windows Media Player only has a menu bar when you mouse certain parts of it
    7. Wireless networking? BWWAAAAAHHHAAAHAHAHAHA!!!!
    8. Bluetooth? BWWAAAAAHHHAAAHAHAHAHA!!!!
    9. Nvidia drivers worthless after 3 weeks
    10. Computer infected immediately without costly add-on software
    11. Random programs hijack autoplay functionality
    12. Audio-CDs install rootkits
    13. What’s a ‘backslash’ again?
    14. Program requires DirectX 9c, is it already installed?

    Man, that list could go on for quite a while.

  37. If the posting is “top 30 mistakes made by new Mac users WHO’VE SWITCHED AFTER YEARS ON ANOTHER PLATFORM” then it should say so. Otherwise, it’s just rubbish.

    Some of them aren’t even fair. Windows “merges” folders when you copy a folder on top of another? That’s one way to put it. It does something confusing and illogical, which requires a sixty-word dialog with four buttons, I’ll grant you that.

    I think over-writing the destination object with the same name, just like what happens with any other file, is actually more sensible. Plus the warning required is very very simple.

    How long has Windows been doing that anyway?

  38. If the posting is “top 30 mistakes made by new Mac users WHO’VE SWITCHED AFTER YEARS ON ANOTHER PLATFORM” then it should say so. Otherwise, it’s just rubbish.

    Some of them aren’t even fair. Windows “merges” folders when you copy a folder on top of another? That’s one way to put it. It does something confusing and illogical, which requires a sixty-word dialog with four buttons, I’ll grant you that.

    I think over-writing the destination object with the same name, just like what happens with any other file, is actually more sensible. Plus the warning required is very very simple.

    How long has Windows been doing that anyway?

  39. When I Switched from system 7 to Windows, Double clicking the title bar annoyed me because I expected the window to shade, even though I knew it would not. switching from Be OS to windows Was annoying because I expected the window to minimize on double – Click. for some reason, the Switch from Windows to Be OS was not very bad.

  40. When I Switched from system 7 to Windows, Double clicking the title bar annoyed me because I expected the window to shade, even though I knew it would not. switching from Be OS to windows Was annoying because I expected the window to minimize on double – Click. for some reason, the Switch from Windows to Be OS was not very bad.

  41. I seem to recall that OS 7 was pretty easy to use. Apple has always been very righteous about how they design their UI, and unfortunately, OS X is so often “bitched at” by linux admins (like my manager) and windows users (my CTO who just needs to use quick books), that you’d think that they’d put some of that brain power in Cupertino (the heart of Narcissism.com(tm)(r)(c)(p)) to work adding some “migration features” for Windows users. Like a “Windows mode” (alt-tab!) and a “Windows transistion mode” that will operate the maximize buttons but nag with help bubbles that it will only do that 1 more time the Windows way….

    My CTO was ordered to use a new 21″ iMac and he calls it a piece of crap because he can’t operate his bank IE-only websites on it, he can’t use Quickbooks PRO on it, and it crashes for mysterious reasons. He’s going back to his Windows XP desktop which (surprisingly) isn’t crashing, and runs his business apps without problems. (No–OmniWeb doesn’t cut it.)

    My CTO hates Macs, too. He likes that they detect printers quite well. But that plus button and double-click-title-bar behavior just makes him loose his patience. He’s never going to buy a Mac. His muscle memory is overdeveloped with the Windows clicks and shortcuts.

    I HATE the lack of windows-ish shortcuts on the MAC. How the “home”, “end” keys work–SUCKS. I *know* how to use the keyboard, why make me waste my time with a mouse to get the the start of the line? The only thing I like about OS X is that at least you can run vi. I have similar complaints about KDE (and why I use Gnome)–the keyboard shortcuts SUCK. It’s a waste of time. I don’t have time to learn 30 new keyboard shortcuts…just make the damned computer operate the way *I* want it to. Not so darned hard to have keystroke themes, is it? It becomes important when you switch between three computers all day long. Every missed keystroke is a BIG waste of time. Every mouse gesture I make which I want a keystroke for is a BIG waste of time.

  42. I seem to recall that OS 7 was pretty easy to use. Apple has always been very righteous about how they design their UI, and unfortunately, OS X is so often “bitched at” by linux admins (like my manager) and windows users (my CTO who just needs to use quick books), that you’d think that they’d put some of that brain power in Cupertino (the heart of Narcissism.com(tm)(r)(c)(p)) to work adding some “migration features” for Windows users. Like a “Windows mode” (alt-tab!) and a “Windows transistion mode” that will operate the maximize buttons but nag with help bubbles that it will only do that 1 more time the Windows way….

    My CTO was ordered to use a new 21″ iMac and he calls it a piece of crap because he can’t operate his bank IE-only websites on it, he can’t use Quickbooks PRO on it, and it crashes for mysterious reasons. He’s going back to his Windows XP desktop which (surprisingly) isn’t crashing, and runs his business apps without problems. (No–OmniWeb doesn’t cut it.)

    My CTO hates Macs, too. He likes that they detect printers quite well. But that plus button and double-click-title-bar behavior just makes him loose his patience. He’s never going to buy a Mac. His muscle memory is overdeveloped with the Windows clicks and shortcuts.

    I HATE the lack of windows-ish shortcuts on the MAC. How the “home”, “end” keys work–SUCKS. I *know* how to use the keyboard, why make me waste my time with a mouse to get the the start of the line? The only thing I like about OS X is that at least you can run vi. I have similar complaints about KDE (and why I use Gnome)–the keyboard shortcuts SUCK. It’s a waste of time. I don’t have time to learn 30 new keyboard shortcuts…just make the damned computer operate the way *I* want it to. Not so darned hard to have keystroke themes, is it? It becomes important when you switch between three computers all day long. Every missed keystroke is a BIG waste of time. Every mouse gesture I make which I want a keystroke for is a BIG waste of time.

  43. > How the “home”, “end” keys work–SUCKS.
    > I *know* how to use the keyboard, why
    > make me waste my time with a mouse to get the the start of the line?

    Command + right/left arrow?

  44. > How the “home”, “end” keys work–SUCKS.
    > I *know* how to use the keyboard, why
    > make me waste my time with a mouse to get the the start of the line?

    Command + right/left arrow?

  45. 26. Inability to work with multiple documents on-screen at the same time, because they have only ever learned to use Windows’ maximise mode which always makes everything full-screen

    the only good thing about windows. I hate floating windows on the Mac.

  46. 26. Inability to work with multiple documents on-screen at the same time, because they have only ever learned to use Windows’ maximise mode which always makes everything full-screen

    the only good thing about windows. I hate floating windows on the Mac.

  47. Most of these “mistakes” are simply results of the differences between Windows and Mac OS X, not necessarily problems with Mac OS X (or Windows). I could write a list of mistakes new Windows users make by taking many of these and reversing them.

  48. Most of these “mistakes” are simply results of the differences between Windows and Mac OS X, not necessarily problems with Mac OS X (or Windows). I could write a list of mistakes new Windows users make by taking many of these and reversing them.

  49. I think the best part of this list is how people become stuck in their ways and expect everything to be the same as what they’re used to. This is human nature.

    However 99% of the people who have commented on this page are complete morons. Honestly, you can navigate your way to someone’s blog, read something, and type a response, but you can’t understand the author’s humor at ALL because you’re too busy complaining about “windoze” and how there is nothing wrong with OSX.

    To the author I say, “Good list, man”. I bought a Powerbook about 8 months ago and I experienced about 1/2 of these, like when I found out about Command-H to hide instead of minimizing, or #29 about copying subfolders (oh man was I pissed).

  50. I think the best part of this list is how people become stuck in their ways and expect everything to be the same as what they’re used to. This is human nature.

    However 99% of the people who have commented on this page are complete morons. Honestly, you can navigate your way to someone’s blog, read something, and type a response, but you can’t understand the author’s humor at ALL because you’re too busy complaining about “windoze” and how there is nothing wrong with OSX.

    To the author I say, “Good list, man”. I bought a Powerbook about 8 months ago and I experienced about 1/2 of these, like when I found out about Command-H to hide instead of minimizing, or #29 about copying subfolders (oh man was I pissed).

  51. all of them are normal… people learn to adapt.
    but #29. Not realising that when you copy a folder over an existing one, OS X -replaces- the destination folder rather than merging the contents, which is what Windows does….

    this should really be strongly emphasized to new mac converts. i did that constantly in windows… that’s how i backed up for a long time… but doing that on a mac… people could lose a lot of data that way before they figured out what was happening. fortunately for me, mucommander (a 2 pane file manager) on the mac merges the contents, so i was spared from a painful lesson.

  52. all of them are normal… people learn to adapt.
    but #29. Not realising that when you copy a folder over an existing one, OS X -replaces- the destination folder rather than merging the contents, which is what Windows does….

    this should really be strongly emphasized to new mac converts. i did that constantly in windows… that’s how i backed up for a long time… but doing that on a mac… people could lose a lot of data that way before they figured out what was happening. fortunately for me, mucommander (a 2 pane file manager) on the mac merges the contents, so i was spared from a painful lesson.

  53. “10. Renaming desktop icons to random characters because they don’t understand the difference between the enter and the return key on Mac. (Enter puts an icon into rename mode).”

    Both enter and return put an icon in rename mode.
    To open an app, its Command-O or Command-Down Arrow.

  54. “10. Renaming desktop icons to random characters because they don’t understand the difference between the enter and the return key on Mac. (Enter puts an icon into rename mode).”

    Both enter and return put an icon in rename mode.
    To open an app, its Command-O or Command-Down Arrow.

  55. You Mac power users need to relax. The author did make a comment that sound like apple is the culprit who led people to make these mistakes. I would probably rename the topic to something like common errors new users make when switching platforms. Apple just went about doing things deferent from Microsoft.

    It’s somewhat like driving an automatic car for the first time after driver standard for many yrs. you will try pressing that invisible clutch to start the car. I work in a multi platform environment and I still make many of these little mistakes because I’m so used to working with Microsoft windows.

    Let it go it’s not that serious.

  56. You Mac power users need to relax. The author did make a comment that sound like apple is the culprit who led people to make these mistakes. I would probably rename the topic to something like common errors new users make when switching platforms. Apple just went about doing things deferent from Microsoft.

    It’s somewhat like driving an automatic car for the first time after driver standard for many yrs. you will try pressing that invisible clutch to start the car. I work in a multi platform environment and I still make many of these little mistakes because I’m so used to working with Microsoft windows.

    Let it go it’s not that serious.

  57. Just in case you imagine all Mac users go off the deep end at the slightest whiff of a hint of any criticism of their platform, please know that many of us have more important things to do. You guys just embarrass me! There are loads of things that could deal with a rethink in OSX, such as the Finder, and the poor use it makes of the Address Book, but this harmless article only refers to very minor temporary difficulties experienced by people switching from Windows.

    Cult members please rearrange the following words to form a sentence .life a Get.

  58. Just in case you imagine all Mac users go off the deep end at the slightest whiff of a hint of any criticism of their platform, please know that many of us have more important things to do. You guys just embarrass me! There are loads of things that could deal with a rethink in OSX, such as the Finder, and the poor use it makes of the Address Book, but this harmless article only refers to very minor temporary difficulties experienced by people switching from Windows.

    Cult members please rearrange the following words to form a sentence .life a Get.

  59. Wow, I really enjoy the folks getting bent out of shape thinking their precious OSX is being attacked! As for folks saying that most of these are just mistakes Windows users do I disagree; my two kids, 3 and 5, have made many of these mistakes, and haven’t been exposed to Winows.

    As for Brandon’s comment:
    The real flaws in OSX are the ones that you can’t really see just from looking at the ui… for instance. My main gripe about OSX is that they don’t even bother to use /etc (along with parting from almost everything else that makes unix ‘unix’). And to that I say, what a waste.

    Right on – /Library? /Users? While I think OSX is very good, they just killed it for me with the sanitizing of Unix there; give me Linux on the desk or give me death!

  60. Wow, I really enjoy the folks getting bent out of shape thinking their precious OSX is being attacked! As for folks saying that most of these are just mistakes Windows users do I disagree; my two kids, 3 and 5, have made many of these mistakes, and haven’t been exposed to Winows.

    As for Brandon’s comment:
    The real flaws in OSX are the ones that you can’t really see just from looking at the ui… for instance. My main gripe about OSX is that they don’t even bother to use /etc (along with parting from almost everything else that makes unix ‘unix’). And to that I say, what a waste.

    Right on – /Library? /Users? While I think OSX is very good, they just killed it for me with the sanitizing of Unix there; give me Linux on the desk or give me death!

  61. I’m sad of the reaction of mac zealots. You guys/girls should learn to keep cool. There is no perfect OS and each OS has its own habits.

    As a side note what annoys me the most on OS X (among other things) is the copy/paste. I constantly highlight/mouse click like under linux. 🙂 Well, i don’t use OS X that often, just to help some friends about X11 and unix.

  62. I’m sad of the reaction of mac zealots. You guys/girls should learn to keep cool. There is no perfect OS and each OS has its own habits.

    As a side note what annoys me the most on OS X (among other things) is the copy/paste. I constantly highlight/mouse click like under linux. 🙂 Well, i don’t use OS X that often, just to help some friends about X11 and unix.

  63. I don’t think that this article was an attack to MAC, but more a study, it’s good that users could pay atention to this mistakes. I haven’t used mac before (I wish I would), but from what I have read, it does have to big usability problems: two delete keys and the folder copy option. Way less than M$ Windows has.

  64. I don’t think that this article was an attack to MAC, but more a study, it’s good that users could pay atention to this mistakes. I haven’t used mac before (I wish I would), but from what I have read, it does have to big usability problems: two delete keys and the folder copy option. Way less than M$ Windows has.

  65. what part of “new mac users” did you not understand when reading this piece? these are mistakes that new mac users make when they first start using a mac, not flaws in the way a mac operates. as usual, taking the time to digest information gets skipped … go directly to angrily generating crap on a blog.

    personally, i appreciate the list of pitfalls so i can better evaluate my move to a mac. i have windows habits that need to be broken to use a mac, and this list was a good help. thank you.

  66. what part of “new mac users” did you not understand when reading this piece? these are mistakes that new mac users make when they first start using a mac, not flaws in the way a mac operates. as usual, taking the time to digest information gets skipped … go directly to angrily generating crap on a blog.

    personally, i appreciate the list of pitfalls so i can better evaluate my move to a mac. i have windows habits that need to be broken to use a mac, and this list was a good help. thank you.

  67. It is amazing how people can get so sensitive/personal about an operating system. Some people aren’t even this sensitive about their pets and they are alive! ITS A THING!!! and will most likely be gone before you die. You are only try to inform with humour and I think its a good post.

  68. It is amazing how people can get so sensitive/personal about an operating system. Some people aren’t even this sensitive about their pets and they are alive! ITS A THING!!! and will most likely be gone before you die. You are only try to inform with humour and I think its a good post.

  69. Thanks for the list man – I made a lot of those mistakes myself when I swiched over a few months back, and I even learned a few things here.

    The one and only thing I dislike about switching over to the Mac is coming across those Mac zealots in all the newsgroups/forums taking every comment as a personal insult. It’s such an over-protective small-town mentality and wastes everybodys time. It’s just a computer guys, who cares?

  70. Thanks for the list man – I made a lot of those mistakes myself when I swiched over a few months back, and I even learned a few things here.

    The one and only thing I dislike about switching over to the Mac is coming across those Mac zealots in all the newsgroups/forums taking every comment as a personal insult. It’s such an over-protective small-town mentality and wastes everybodys time. It’s just a computer guys, who cares?

  71. It seems that most of these people here just regret that they are using stupid mac’s. Hey guys you should not be embarassed to go back to Windows 🙂

  72. It seems that most of these people here just regret that they are using stupid mac’s. Hey guys you should not be embarassed to go back to Windows 🙂

  73. I don’t get why wouldn’t someone use the Google search bar in Safari.
    Here’s one for Windows:

    112. Trying to memorize when the ALT and the CTRL key are used for shortcuts.

  74. I don’t get why wouldn’t someone use the Google search bar in Safari.
    Here’s one for Windows:

    112. Trying to memorize when the ALT and the CTRL key are used for shortcuts.

  75. Thinking, when a window has inexplicably expanded so its top is touching the menu bar and its bottom is off the bottom of the screen, that you will be able to drag something other than the now (inaccessible) bottom right corner to restore control over the window, and wondering why anyone would design in such an infuriatingly arbitrary limitation.

  76. Thinking, when a window has inexplicably expanded so its top is touching the menu bar and its bottom is off the bottom of the screen, that you will be able to drag something other than the now (inaccessible) bottom right corner to restore control over the window, and wondering why anyone would design in such an infuriatingly arbitrary limitation.

  77. “I don’t get why wouldn’t someone use the Google search bar in Safari.”

    The problem is not actually using Google search bar in Safari, but using it for the obvious… The example used was hotmail.com which should just go straight in the URL address line. It’s like typing in Google in the Google search. If you already have the address, use it.

    I take issue not with the list, but with the title of the list. These are not really mistakes on the part of the new Mac user. They’re just old habits on an old system that don’t work on a new one. Apple doesn’t do everything perfectly (2 Delete buttons is a Doh! if there ever was one).

    Doing what’s familiar to a persona is not a mistake on their part, nor is it a mistake on Apple’s part. It should be expected that a new user will continue to do on his new Mac what he did in Windows.

    FYI: Switchers from Mac OS 9 to Mac OS X also have to deal with some of the same “habit” unlearning issues.

    The most important habit for a Windows switcher to remember is that 9 times out of 10, Apple makes things easier. The Windows habit is to expect things to be more complicated instead of simpler.

    Keep in mind there are millions of Mac users who are forced to use Windows at work, and the switch from work to home is not as difficult as you migh think.

  78. “I don’t get why wouldn’t someone use the Google search bar in Safari.”

    The problem is not actually using Google search bar in Safari, but using it for the obvious… The example used was hotmail.com which should just go straight in the URL address line. It’s like typing in Google in the Google search. If you already have the address, use it.

    I take issue not with the list, but with the title of the list. These are not really mistakes on the part of the new Mac user. They’re just old habits on an old system that don’t work on a new one. Apple doesn’t do everything perfectly (2 Delete buttons is a Doh! if there ever was one).

    Doing what’s familiar to a persona is not a mistake on their part, nor is it a mistake on Apple’s part. It should be expected that a new user will continue to do on his new Mac what he did in Windows.

    FYI: Switchers from Mac OS 9 to Mac OS X also have to deal with some of the same “habit” unlearning issues.

    The most important habit for a Windows switcher to remember is that 9 times out of 10, Apple makes things easier. The Windows habit is to expect things to be more complicated instead of simpler.

    Keep in mind there are millions of Mac users who are forced to use Windows at work, and the switch from work to home is not as difficult as you migh think.

  79. This might be true for a person tht has just swtitched to the good side. But for thoes of us who have used apples os’s for a while now get the hang of it. Windoes has its shares of quarks also.

  80. This might be true for a person tht has just swtitched to the good side. But for thoes of us who have used apples os’s for a while now get the hang of it. Windoes has its shares of quarks also.

  81. Count me as one of the people who don’t see what the fuss on either side is about… if you can’t appreciate the power of today’s personal computers, maybe you’re a little spoiled. Computers of any platform are tools, and to expect that you won’t experience a learning curve with a new tool is a misguided (and perhaps uniquely American) mistake. Sure, there are things that are (very) frustrating about using computers, but compare the productivity and efficiency to the days of the typewriter, snail mail, and print-only information. It’d be nice if I could use the same platform everywhere I go… just like it’d be nice if beer was free, my car didn’t need refueling, and I knew every spoken language intuitively.
    For the record, I own a Mac– and love it–but like everyone who has a job or goes to school, I live in a PC world. I appreciate those machines too.

  82. Count me as one of the people who don’t see what the fuss on either side is about… if you can’t appreciate the power of today’s personal computers, maybe you’re a little spoiled. Computers of any platform are tools, and to expect that you won’t experience a learning curve with a new tool is a misguided (and perhaps uniquely American) mistake. Sure, there are things that are (very) frustrating about using computers, but compare the productivity and efficiency to the days of the typewriter, snail mail, and print-only information. It’d be nice if I could use the same platform everywhere I go… just like it’d be nice if beer was free, my car didn’t need refueling, and I knew every spoken language intuitively.
    For the record, I own a Mac– and love it–but like everyone who has a job or goes to school, I live in a PC world. I appreciate those machines too.

  83. Hardest things to get used to when switching to mac OSX:

    Why doesn’t my computer or browser crash all the time?

    Why don’t I have to battle virii and adware all the time?

    All the rest is just ‘window’ dressing

  84. Hardest things to get used to when switching to mac OSX:

    Why doesn’t my computer or browser crash all the time?

    Why don’t I have to battle virii and adware all the time?

    All the rest is just ‘window’ dressing

  85. Besides that I’m getting the feeling my windows works better then most others:
    7. Not understanding the usefulness of column view and leaving everything in icon view
    Umh.. could s/o please explain the mac connection of this?

  86. Besides that I’m getting the feeling my windows works better then most others:
    7. Not understanding the usefulness of column view and leaving everything in icon view
    Umh.. could s/o please explain the mac connection of this?

  87. I find the article very interesting, cause I will be forced to use a Mac in the future. I have used it a couple of times and experienced a lot of the issues described here, but was able to complete the most tasks.

    I’m a pro win user (3-d artist, PC experience since MS-DOS 3 or so). I dislike windows, linux and osx/macs. I dislike all the modern OSes/OS-UIs I’ve ever seen. I just like PCs a little bit, because they’re often a bunch of good hardware with an open system alowing installation of several OSes…
    All the OSes I have ever seen are still not user friendly. It’s a long way to build OSes able to comunicate with the user in an understandable manner (forget speech-engines). There’s a lot of things which can be done without entering science fiction – I just wonder why programmers can’t overcome their egos and empathize with an unexperienced user, who does not have the wish to spend much time on understanding an UI. I really believe that a big part of the issues described here and similar ones in other OSes can be eliminated by OS-makers.

    Just an opinion:
    -Linux is made for programmers or at least for very technicly skilled people willing to confront highly complicated technical issues.
    -Windows is for people who want a fast workflow, but are willing to fight against the constant f*ck in the ass by Microsoft, the Virii-scene and able to confront technical issues.
    -Mac is for people, who do like a nice looking UI, but don’t want to be confronted with complicated technical issues.

    Please don’t believe that some of this is meant as an unsult, not wanting to be confronted with technical issues is understandable :]

    Nature is much more interesting than any kind of technical devices. Peace :]

  88. I find the article very interesting, cause I will be forced to use a Mac in the future. I have used it a couple of times and experienced a lot of the issues described here, but was able to complete the most tasks.

    I’m a pro win user (3-d artist, PC experience since MS-DOS 3 or so). I dislike windows, linux and osx/macs. I dislike all the modern OSes/OS-UIs I’ve ever seen. I just like PCs a little bit, because they’re often a bunch of good hardware with an open system alowing installation of several OSes…
    All the OSes I have ever seen are still not user friendly. It’s a long way to build OSes able to comunicate with the user in an understandable manner (forget speech-engines). There’s a lot of things which can be done without entering science fiction – I just wonder why programmers can’t overcome their egos and empathize with an unexperienced user, who does not have the wish to spend much time on understanding an UI. I really believe that a big part of the issues described here and similar ones in other OSes can be eliminated by OS-makers.

    Just an opinion:
    -Linux is made for programmers or at least for very technicly skilled people willing to confront highly complicated technical issues.
    -Windows is for people who want a fast workflow, but are willing to fight against the constant f*ck in the ass by Microsoft, the Virii-scene and able to confront technical issues.
    -Mac is for people, who do like a nice looking UI, but don’t want to be confronted with complicated technical issues.

    Please don’t believe that some of this is meant as an unsult, not wanting to be confronted with technical issues is understandable :]

    Nature is much more interesting than any kind of technical devices. Peace :]

  89. My Top #1: Alt-Q is on a german PC-keyboad the ‘@’ symbol. Fast typing people can imagine how much data I lost in the process of abandoning old habits. It was very frustrating.

  90. My Top #1: Alt-Q is on a german PC-keyboad the ‘@’ symbol. Fast typing people can imagine how much data I lost in the process of abandoning old habits. It was very frustrating.

  91. OMG did you have to put such a pretty picture at the top of the page? It is soooo /distracting/… no idea if that is you but either way can you please remove the picture, I can’t read any of the text with that there. 😀

  92. OMG did you have to put such a pretty picture at the top of the page? It is soooo /distracting/… no idea if that is you but either way can you please remove the picture, I can’t read any of the text with that there. 😀

  93. Er, the picture of me is the dorky looking bloke on the top right of the page. The chick is Ellen Feiss, a Mac user featured in Apple’s infamous ‘switcher’ campaign and renowned for appearing to be stoned on the ads.

  94. Er, the picture of me is the dorky looking bloke on the top right of the page. The chick is Ellen Feiss, a Mac user featured in Apple’s infamous ‘switcher’ campaign and renowned for appearing to be stoned on the ads.

  95. 29. Not realising that when you copy a folder over an existing one, OS X -replaces- the destination folder rather than merging the contents, which is what Windows does.

    Oy! Yeah, my co-workers (all native Mac users) weren’t too happy with me when I made this mistake! (I think it was about a week after files on the Network drive began “mysteriously disappearing” that we realized what was going on.) The other differences I could deal with; this one could get a guy fired!

  96. 29. Not realising that when you copy a folder over an existing one, OS X -replaces- the destination folder rather than merging the contents, which is what Windows does.

    Oy! Yeah, my co-workers (all native Mac users) weren’t too happy with me when I made this mistake! (I think it was about a week after files on the Network drive began “mysteriously disappearing” that we realized what was going on.) The other differences I could deal with; this one could get a guy fired!

  97. > 8. Not using any keyboard shortcuts

    That’s mostly because the information about the keyboard shortcuts on screen hardly corresponds to the labels on the keyboard. Apple is extremely inconsequent: The Alt/Option key has two names (why isn’t it either just “Alt” or just “Option”) but on the screen, none of them is used but some strange staircase symbol instead — which conversely does not appear on the keyboard. Simiilarly, on the screen, two symbols (very much alike) are used for Shift and Ctrl but these symbols do not appear on the keyboard. To use keyboard shortcuts one would first need to know which keys to press, and that’s not something that Apple makes easy to figure out.

    > 19. Looking in vain for an uninstaller app, because they don’t realise
    > that uninstalling an application on Mac is as easy as dragging the
    > program icon into the trash.

    Except in about 40% of the cases where uninstalling *is* necessary because in addition to the program icon, applications may have installed some stuff in the Library folder.

    > 29. Not realising that when you copy a folder over an existing one,
    > OS X -replaces- the destination folder rather than merging the
    > contents, which is what Windows does.

    Which is one of the reasons why I often access my shared Apple harddrive from a PC and do file management there.

  98. > 8. Not using any keyboard shortcuts

    That’s mostly because the information about the keyboard shortcuts on screen hardly corresponds to the labels on the keyboard. Apple is extremely inconsequent: The Alt/Option key has two names (why isn’t it either just “Alt” or just “Option”) but on the screen, none of them is used but some strange staircase symbol instead — which conversely does not appear on the keyboard. Simiilarly, on the screen, two symbols (very much alike) are used for Shift and Ctrl but these symbols do not appear on the keyboard. To use keyboard shortcuts one would first need to know which keys to press, and that’s not something that Apple makes easy to figure out.

    > 19. Looking in vain for an uninstaller app, because they don’t realise
    > that uninstalling an application on Mac is as easy as dragging the
    > program icon into the trash.

    Except in about 40% of the cases where uninstalling *is* necessary because in addition to the program icon, applications may have installed some stuff in the Library folder.

    > 29. Not realising that when you copy a folder over an existing one,
    > OS X -replaces- the destination folder rather than merging the
    > contents, which is what Windows does.

    Which is one of the reasons why I often access my shared Apple harddrive from a PC and do file management there.

  99. haha.. I started using macs little over a year ago after having been a pc user for some 15 years..

    1, 6, 12 & 18 were “quirks” that took me some time getting used too 🙂

  100. haha.. I started using macs little over a year ago after having been a pc user for some 15 years..

    1, 6, 12 & 18 were “quirks” that took me some time getting used too 🙂

  101. >29. Not realising that when you copy a folder over an >existing one, OS X -replaces- the destination folder >rather than merging the contents, which is what Windows >does.

    I hate this “feature” 😦

  102. >29. Not realising that when you copy a folder over an >existing one, OS X -replaces- the destination folder >rather than merging the contents, which is what Windows >does.

    I hate this “feature” 😦

  103. This replace “feature” is actually a characteristic of all UNIX-based systems, not just Mac OS X.

    Almost a year ago, there was a raging discussion going on about the replace=merge controversy:

    “It Depends on What the Meaning of the Word ‘Replace’ Is”
    http://daringfireball.net/2005/04/replace

    which was ignited by a post on Matthew Mullenweg’s blog about losing some photos because of his confusion over Microsoft’s REPLACING the MEANING of the word replace with merge:
    http://photomatt.net/2005/04/06/braindead-finder-behaviour/
    #comment-19179

    Aside from the fact that Matt’s Pentax folder would have remained intact and his existing photos would have been saved without his even thinking about it by offloading his new photos directly into iPhoto (which only adds photos… deletes only at will of the user), the reason why any switcher would have any confusion here is the fault of Microsoft for REPLACING the word REPLACE with MERGE in it’s own proprietary dictionary. Look in any non-MS dictionary of the English language , and you will find that not a single one will define replace as merge. If MS had stuck with conventional English nomenclature, there would be no such accidents waiting to happen.

    Here’s my own contribution to the dialog on Matt’s blog (comment#155):

    “NEVER HEARD OF THIS PROBLEM UNTIL NOW… 155 comments and counting!!! ???

    I’ve been working on Windows 98/2000 Pro for 5 years at my office, however, the OS is locked tight with restrictions. After seeing this string of comments, I now see why restrictions in Windows are likely a very good thing. Therefore, I was never previously exposed to the Windows “definition” of Replace = some kind of merging of files and/or folders. In fact, until I ran into John Gruber’s article mentioning this site, I didn’t even know such a “problem” existed. So much for Mac users being “brainwashed”… It seems my brain never got sullied in the first place.

    Therefore, when I bought my very first home computer (iMac running Jaguar OS X 10.2), I had no preconceptions about the meaning of the word Replace when it showed up in the dialogs. I’ve never confused the word Replace to mean anything but “Get rid of the old item and put the new one in its place instead”. Linguistically, it’s Microsoft that has been counter-intuitive. Evidently, in a 1984 newspeak way, Windows has conditioned people to believe that 2 + 2 = 5.
    The idea that Apple should do things in the Windows fashion just because it’s more familiar to millions of Windows users & switchers is just plain ludicrous. Be thankful that Unix is not Windows. Besides, if Apple did everything the Microsoft way, there would BE no point in switching in the first place:

    “Some switchers just want to see how much they can get away with NOT relearning. If you can do everything that you did before, the same way that you did before, then why switch?”
    – “From GUI-Avoider to Mac OS X” by Mary Stamper — Unix geek and CLI enthusiast

    http://www.maccompanion.com/archives/march2005/Columns/Guest%20Editorial.htm

    Remember, it’s the differences between Mac OS X/Unix and Windows which make Apple’s OS less liable to the onslaught of viruses, worms, & spyware driving so many to switch to Mac at this point in time. Besides, the Replace = Merge/Copy/Move scenario contributes to so much of Microsoft’s Bloatware.

    That being said, I agree with John Gruber that Apple should break with Unix tradition here, arrange for the deleted files & folders to move to the Trash, then submit the code to the Open Source community. See John Siracusa’s commentary about Apple’s Unix innovations at the bottom of this page:
    http://arstechnica.com/reviews/os/macosx-10.4.ars/5
    Just my 2 cents”

  104. This replace “feature” is actually a characteristic of all UNIX-based systems, not just Mac OS X.

    Almost a year ago, there was a raging discussion going on about the replace=merge controversy:

    “It Depends on What the Meaning of the Word ‘Replace’ Is”
    http://daringfireball.net/2005/04/replace

    which was ignited by a post on Matthew Mullenweg’s blog about losing some photos because of his confusion over Microsoft’s REPLACING the MEANING of the word replace with merge:
    http://photomatt.net/2005/04/06/braindead-finder-behaviour/
    #comment-19179

    Aside from the fact that Matt’s Pentax folder would have remained intact and his existing photos would have been saved without his even thinking about it by offloading his new photos directly into iPhoto (which only adds photos… deletes only at will of the user), the reason why any switcher would have any confusion here is the fault of Microsoft for REPLACING the word REPLACE with MERGE in it’s own proprietary dictionary. Look in any non-MS dictionary of the English language , and you will find that not a single one will define replace as merge. If MS had stuck with conventional English nomenclature, there would be no such accidents waiting to happen.

    Here’s my own contribution to the dialog on Matt’s blog (comment#155):

    “NEVER HEARD OF THIS PROBLEM UNTIL NOW… 155 comments and counting!!! ???

    I’ve been working on Windows 98/2000 Pro for 5 years at my office, however, the OS is locked tight with restrictions. After seeing this string of comments, I now see why restrictions in Windows are likely a very good thing. Therefore, I was never previously exposed to the Windows “definition” of Replace = some kind of merging of files and/or folders. In fact, until I ran into John Gruber’s article mentioning this site, I didn’t even know such a “problem” existed. So much for Mac users being “brainwashed”… It seems my brain never got sullied in the first place.

    Therefore, when I bought my very first home computer (iMac running Jaguar OS X 10.2), I had no preconceptions about the meaning of the word Replace when it showed up in the dialogs. I’ve never confused the word Replace to mean anything but “Get rid of the old item and put the new one in its place instead”. Linguistically, it’s Microsoft that has been counter-intuitive. Evidently, in a 1984 newspeak way, Windows has conditioned people to believe that 2 + 2 = 5.
    The idea that Apple should do things in the Windows fashion just because it’s more familiar to millions of Windows users & switchers is just plain ludicrous. Be thankful that Unix is not Windows. Besides, if Apple did everything the Microsoft way, there would BE no point in switching in the first place:

    “Some switchers just want to see how much they can get away with NOT relearning. If you can do everything that you did before, the same way that you did before, then why switch?”
    – “From GUI-Avoider to Mac OS X” by Mary Stamper — Unix geek and CLI enthusiast

    http://www.maccompanion.com/archives/march2005/Columns/Guest%20Editorial.htm

    Remember, it’s the differences between Mac OS X/Unix and Windows which make Apple’s OS less liable to the onslaught of viruses, worms, & spyware driving so many to switch to Mac at this point in time. Besides, the Replace = Merge/Copy/Move scenario contributes to so much of Microsoft’s Bloatware.

    That being said, I agree with John Gruber that Apple should break with Unix tradition here, arrange for the deleted files & folders to move to the Trash, then submit the code to the Open Source community. See John Siracusa’s commentary about Apple’s Unix innovations at the bottom of this page:
    http://arstechnica.com/reviews/os/macosx-10.4.ars/5
    Just my 2 cents”

  105. Great article. Sorry about all the idiot comments by people who think new users don’t make mistakes or that you’re somehow commenting on OS X itself.

    I’ve taught lots of classes to people who’ve never used a Mac before and these are ALL very common mistakes! Geez, who can have a problem with pointing that out? It’s funny because it’s true! Heck, besides being funny I bet it can even help people learn quicker.

  106. Great article. Sorry about all the idiot comments by people who think new users don’t make mistakes or that you’re somehow commenting on OS X itself.

    I’ve taught lots of classes to people who’ve never used a Mac before and these are ALL very common mistakes! Geez, who can have a problem with pointing that out? It’s funny because it’s true! Heck, besides being funny I bet it can even help people learn quicker.

  107. I concur that the information in the article is valuable, well-written commonsense advice. The quibble some have is with the connotion of the word mistake versus, say, adaptation to a higher plane of existence. I mean, we are not talking about the “Any Key” conundrum here.

    Disagreeing about the #8 about Keyboard Shortcuts is a valid point, because how many Windows users actually *use* keyboard shortcuts on their PCs? Nobody in my office even knows what the Windows button does.

    I would have preferred the term Switcher Snafus to mistakes, but then the title should be argued over at TUAW.com, where Dan got his original inspiration.

    I think I’ll un-check the “Notify me” box so I can stop replying to Warne-ings about new posts.

  108. I concur that the information in the article is valuable, well-written commonsense advice. The quibble some have is with the connotion of the word mistake versus, say, adaptation to a higher plane of existence. I mean, we are not talking about the “Any Key” conundrum here.

    Disagreeing about the #8 about Keyboard Shortcuts is a valid point, because how many Windows users actually *use* keyboard shortcuts on their PCs? Nobody in my office even knows what the Windows button does.

    I would have preferred the term Switcher Snafus to mistakes, but then the title should be argued over at TUAW.com, where Dan got his original inspiration.

    I think I’ll un-check the “Notify me” box so I can stop replying to Warne-ings about new posts.

  109. “Disagreeing about the #8 about Keyboard Shortcuts is a valid point, because how many Windows users actually *use* keyboard shortcuts on their PCs?”

    ::raises hand:: I do! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve tried to use the Tab key to cycle through options in a dialogue box (save, cancel, replace). And if you’re going to use a program like Photoshop for any considerable length of time, keyboard shortcuts are a must!

    At least Alt-Tab works the same! I just wish I could get Ctrl-H to do something useful on my PC! 😉

  110. “Disagreeing about the #8 about Keyboard Shortcuts is a valid point, because how many Windows users actually *use* keyboard shortcuts on their PCs?”

    ::raises hand:: I do! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve tried to use the Tab key to cycle through options in a dialogue box (save, cancel, replace). And if you’re going to use a program like Photoshop for any considerable length of time, keyboard shortcuts are a must!

    At least Alt-Tab works the same! I just wish I could get Ctrl-H to do something useful on my PC! 😉

  111. Right now I am in the process of restoring 8 DVDs worth of data to my MAC (I have used a MAC since 1988) and the whole folders OVERWRITING instead of MERGING files IS a major pain in the ass! Especially when you are putting all of your music and audio books back into iTunes. What kind of sense does that make?

    I love my MAC as much as any anyone but this is just plain dumb.

  112. Right now I am in the process of restoring 8 DVDs worth of data to my MAC (I have used a MAC since 1988) and the whole folders OVERWRITING instead of MERGING files IS a major pain in the ass! Especially when you are putting all of your music and audio books back into iTunes. What kind of sense does that make?

    I love my MAC as much as any anyone but this is just plain dumb.

  113. Even after 1 1/2 years of Mac, I’ve screwed up with th copying thing.. lost a couple of files that way, yup.

  114. Even after 1 1/2 years of Mac, I’ve screwed up with th copying thing.. lost a couple of files that way, yup.

  115. Thanks man, you probably saved my life. I switched from Windows 6 weeks ago, and #29 would have hit me in the face if I would have not read about it here first.

  116. Thanks man, you probably saved my life. I switched from Windows 6 weeks ago, and #29 would have hit me in the face if I would have not read about it here first.

  117. They main think I have learned from this post is that there are as many fanatical, breain dead, illiterate users on Windows as there are on Mac. Seriously – those posters above who had frantic insecurity attacks obviously either did not read the post, or did not have enough neurons left after years of drug abuse to understand it…

    And yet, at the same time, I am happy to observe that a great majority of people here are capable of independant thought and critical analysis; refreshing from other blogs where that’s more the exception than the norm…

  118. They main think I have learned from this post is that there are as many fanatical, breain dead, illiterate users on Windows as there are on Mac. Seriously – those posters above who had frantic insecurity attacks obviously either did not read the post, or did not have enough neurons left after years of drug abuse to understand it…

    And yet, at the same time, I am happy to observe that a great majority of people here are capable of independant thought and critical analysis; refreshing from other blogs where that’s more the exception than the norm…

  119. I find it funny that many people see the post as an attack on osX, and their response? trashing windows, what kind of sence does that make?

    “-Yes there are problems in osX, But windows has bigger ones.”
    Great argument, really.

  120. I find it funny that many people see the post as an attack on osX, and their response? trashing windows, what kind of sence does that make?

    “-Yes there are problems in osX, But windows has bigger ones.”
    Great argument, really.

  121. I was a Mac user for about 3 months. All I have to say is that the Mac was a better choice for computing than Windows but I did commit MANY of the mistakes mentioned here.

    I am now an Ubuntu 6.06 user. It works like a charm to me!

    But I DO HATE this sort of high moral/computing ground Macsters feel they are on. The fact that Windows/Linux users expect to have a maximized window then they press that button on the window and that on the Mac this behaves differently DOES NOT MEAN THAT Mac does it right. Sometimes I DO WANT THE DAMN window maximized. Deal with it.

  122. I was a Mac user for about 3 months. All I have to say is that the Mac was a better choice for computing than Windows but I did commit MANY of the mistakes mentioned here.

    I am now an Ubuntu 6.06 user. It works like a charm to me!

    But I DO HATE this sort of high moral/computing ground Macsters feel they are on. The fact that Windows/Linux users expect to have a maximized window then they press that button on the window and that on the Mac this behaves differently DOES NOT MEAN THAT Mac does it right. Sometimes I DO WANT THE DAMN window maximized. Deal with it.

  123. I been useing windows since I was 1997 (I’m 15) and I just got a macbook and to me I think it is much easer then windows becaus you can do more things at once. I quickely got over thes 30 mistakes in 2 weeks you just need to keep playing around with it and try to find out everything you can do with your mac because once you do you will never want to go back useing a windows maby just 4 1 or 2 programs and thats it

  124. I been useing windows since I was 1997 (I’m 15) and I just got a macbook and to me I think it is much easer then windows becaus you can do more things at once. I quickely got over thes 30 mistakes in 2 weeks you just need to keep playing around with it and try to find out everything you can do with your mac because once you do you will never want to go back useing a windows maby just 4 1 or 2 programs and thats it

  125. – Not realizing that the operating system works in exactly the way that it was designed to work, and NOT in the way that you want/hope it works. ie, the computer only does what its designed to do and only does what you tell it to do.

    – Get out more

  126. – Not realizing that the operating system works in exactly the way that it was designed to work, and NOT in the way that you want/hope it works. ie, the computer only does what its designed to do and only does what you tell it to do.

    – Get out more

  127. Wow, this is actually a decent article for first-time windows-to-mac switchers and look at all the mac zealots mouthing off.

    I do wonder about #29. Not realising that when you copy a folder over an existing one, OS X -replaces- the destination folder rather than merging the contents, which is what Windows does…

    which other OS does this? For me (I don’t use a mac but have used almost every conceivable OS under the sun) this would be most unexpected and annoying behaviour. Serious question: is there any OS out there that does a replace instead of a merge in this case?

  128. Wow, this is actually a decent article for first-time windows-to-mac switchers and look at all the mac zealots mouthing off.

    I do wonder about #29. Not realising that when you copy a folder over an existing one, OS X -replaces- the destination folder rather than merging the contents, which is what Windows does…

    which other OS does this? For me (I don’t use a mac but have used almost every conceivable OS under the sun) this would be most unexpected and annoying behaviour. Serious question: is there any OS out there that does a replace instead of a merge in this case?

  129. As far as I know, “replace = replace” is pretty standard in the Unix world, though I am no expert in the matter, but when Matt Mullenweg lost a file of photos, it became a matter of quite a lot of controversy on the web.

    John Gruber wrote about this in Dairing Fireball:

    http://daringfireball.net/2005/04/replace

    Gruber suggests an alternative for Apple.

    NB. Had Matt been adding a file to iPhoto, the contents of the new folder just get added to the whole collection. I guess you could call that “merging” but a Mac person would never think of it that way. A long-tiime Mac user would just think of it as “adding” a folder to iPhoto.

  130. As far as I know, “replace = replace” is pretty standard in the Unix world, though I am no expert in the matter, but when Matt Mullenweg lost a file of photos, it became a matter of quite a lot of controversy on the web.

    John Gruber wrote about this in Dairing Fireball:

    http://daringfireball.net/2005/04/replace

    Gruber suggests an alternative for Apple.

    NB. Had Matt been adding a file to iPhoto, the contents of the new folder just get added to the whole collection. I guess you could call that “merging” but a Mac person would never think of it that way. A long-tiime Mac user would just think of it as “adding” a folder to iPhoto.

  131. I just switched buying myself a new Intel iMac, i love it, i run bootcamp and i can use xp and tiger, however i am REALLY FRUSTRATED with the way the mouse moves when im in Tiger, I have it in the fastest speed, but it is not the speed that bothers me, it just feels uneven, like i cant move and click as fast as i do in windows, in xp is like second nature, in OSX it feels like i have to really aim and what is even more frustrating when im running windows it feels just fine, in the same iMac. So what do you guys think: is it me and i just have to get used to Mac’s way of mouse movement, or is there a setting or a program i can use to make the mouse feel more like xp?

    I really appreciate an answer.

  132. I just switched buying myself a new Intel iMac, i love it, i run bootcamp and i can use xp and tiger, however i am REALLY FRUSTRATED with the way the mouse moves when im in Tiger, I have it in the fastest speed, but it is not the speed that bothers me, it just feels uneven, like i cant move and click as fast as i do in windows, in xp is like second nature, in OSX it feels like i have to really aim and what is even more frustrating when im running windows it feels just fine, in the same iMac. So what do you guys think: is it me and i just have to get used to Mac’s way of mouse movement, or is there a setting or a program i can use to make the mouse feel more like xp?

    I really appreciate an answer.

  133. Hi Luis,

    I understand there is a difference in the way the mouse is programmed to respond in Windows vs. Mac, don’t remember what the reason was, however.

    Try this freeware to see if it solves your problem. It’s called MouseZoom.

    http://www.macupdate.com/info.php/id/9091

    A Universal version was released last July.

    PS. I’m not sure if this is where I read the info about the differences, but I find this website to be a great cross-platform treasure-trove. I’ve never used XP, but a lot of people ask me questions about it all the time because I’m a “computer geek”. So I would look up how to do something in Panther, and later Tiger, and find the XP equivalent. Sometimes it worked the other way. I looked up the question the other way, how to do something someone asked me in XP and found out things about Mac OS X (goodies) I didn’t know about before.

    http://www.xvsxp.com/

  134. Hi Luis,

    I understand there is a difference in the way the mouse is programmed to respond in Windows vs. Mac, don’t remember what the reason was, however.

    Try this freeware to see if it solves your problem. It’s called MouseZoom.

    http://www.macupdate.com/info.php/id/9091

    A Universal version was released last July.

    PS. I’m not sure if this is where I read the info about the differences, but I find this website to be a great cross-platform treasure-trove. I’ve never used XP, but a lot of people ask me questions about it all the time because I’m a “computer geek”. So I would look up how to do something in Panther, and later Tiger, and find the XP equivalent. Sometimes it worked the other way. I looked up the question the other way, how to do something someone asked me in XP and found out things about Mac OS X (goodies) I didn’t know about before.

    http://www.xvsxp.com/

  135. I use both Mac’s and PC’s. Most of the points of this article are correct but what I really find funny are the die hard Mac nuts getting all up in arms defending each point made. FYI This article wasn’t busting on Mac’s it’s just pointing out some mistakes used by NEW Mac users.

  136. I use both Mac’s and PC’s. Most of the points of this article are correct but what I really find funny are the die hard Mac nuts getting all up in arms defending each point made. FYI This article wasn’t busting on Mac’s it’s just pointing out some mistakes used by NEW Mac users.

  137. I realise you copied these from the article you mention, but still:

    >>Creating endless untitled folders

    Not really a newbie problem… I’ve met plenty of people who never grow out of it, because they don’t get bitten by it, or are too lazy.

    >Confusing the concept of wallpaper with screensaver

    This is half-witted, plain & simple. Sorry to any of you who did it, & I know I pick up on these things faster than most, but it really isn’t hard.

    Now, to all the commentators saying this article should be renamed to “Top 30 mistakes by Windows-to-Mac converts,” half of these mistakes are total computer n00b mistakes, & half of them are problems related to becoming used to another OS. If one person was bitten by all of them, they have severe mental problems; if you’re used to Windows enough that you think double-clicking will maximise the window, you should by now know the difference between wallpaper & screensaver.

    Lastly (last on-topic point, anyway), the replace=replace thing is somewhere Apple messed up. For once MS has the usability advantage – it’s much easier to manage files when the replace=merge system is in use. It does make sense, too, if not as much sense… these things are always implemented recursively, so each individual file is moved to it’s new place, not disturbing the others, so the only part which isn’t replaced is the folder itself. It’s a conceptual difference – Mac OS uses a box metaphor, where if you move one box to another’s position, the first is displaced. Windows uses a parent-child metaphor, where if you move one parent to another parent’s position (divorce & remarriage?) the second parent brings it’s children & gets all the children of the first parent. Kinda clumsy analogy there, but it’s functional.

    BTW, nice job on using a textual captcha! I don’t do it often, but occasionally I browse using Lynx… odd I know, but still, it’s lovely to find a site which does things right.

  138. I realise you copied these from the article you mention, but still:

    >>Creating endless untitled folders

    Not really a newbie problem… I’ve met plenty of people who never grow out of it, because they don’t get bitten by it, or are too lazy.

    >Confusing the concept of wallpaper with screensaver

    This is half-witted, plain & simple. Sorry to any of you who did it, & I know I pick up on these things faster than most, but it really isn’t hard.

    Now, to all the commentators saying this article should be renamed to “Top 30 mistakes by Windows-to-Mac converts,” half of these mistakes are total computer n00b mistakes, & half of them are problems related to becoming used to another OS. If one person was bitten by all of them, they have severe mental problems; if you’re used to Windows enough that you think double-clicking will maximise the window, you should by now know the difference between wallpaper & screensaver.

    Lastly (last on-topic point, anyway), the replace=replace thing is somewhere Apple messed up. For once MS has the usability advantage – it’s much easier to manage files when the replace=merge system is in use. It does make sense, too, if not as much sense… these things are always implemented recursively, so each individual file is moved to it’s new place, not disturbing the others, so the only part which isn’t replaced is the folder itself. It’s a conceptual difference – Mac OS uses a box metaphor, where if you move one box to another’s position, the first is displaced. Windows uses a parent-child metaphor, where if you move one parent to another parent’s position (divorce & remarriage?) the second parent brings it’s children & gets all the children of the first parent. Kinda clumsy analogy there, but it’s functional.

    BTW, nice job on using a textual captcha! I don’t do it often, but occasionally I browse using Lynx… odd I know, but still, it’s lovely to find a site which does things right.

  139. “29. Not realising that when you copy a folder over an existing one, OS X -replaces- the destination folder rather than merging the contents, which is what Windows does.”

    Hey, a good feature for Windows! (I’ve never used Windows so it’s news to me.) There should be some modifier key that would do the same on a Mac.

  140. “29. Not realising that when you copy a folder over an existing one, OS X -replaces- the destination folder rather than merging the contents, which is what Windows does.”

    Hey, a good feature for Windows! (I’ve never used Windows so it’s news to me.) There should be some modifier key that would do the same on a Mac.

  141. When the Mac was invented, newcomers often had a hard time using the mouse – when the mouse got to the edge of the desk, they got stuck. The design was good, but we forget that it wasn’t always intuitive.

    Two things that Windows users have trouble with are:
    1. Click on the Word icon, and double click on it, and triple click on it, press Enter, and wonder why it didn’t open up a blank document.
    2. Click on the red light when done writing the document, and maybe if you’re really observant sometime later notice that there is a little black triangle under the icon – telling us that Word is still running. (But I *distinctly* remember closing it!?!?!)

  142. When the Mac was invented, newcomers often had a hard time using the mouse – when the mouse got to the edge of the desk, they got stuck. The design was good, but we forget that it wasn’t always intuitive.

    Two things that Windows users have trouble with are:
    1. Click on the Word icon, and double click on it, and triple click on it, press Enter, and wonder why it didn’t open up a blank document.
    2. Click on the red light when done writing the document, and maybe if you’re really observant sometime later notice that there is a little black triangle under the icon – telling us that Word is still running. (But I *distinctly* remember closing it!?!?!)

  143. 19. Looking in vain for an uninstaller app, because they don’t realise that uninstalling an application on Mac is as easy as dragging the program icon into the trash.

    Usually – but Google “Macintosh uninstaller” to find applications which purport to do this better.

    Mostly this is discovering garbage that needs to be cleaned up.

  144. 19. Looking in vain for an uninstaller app, because they don’t realise that uninstalling an application on Mac is as easy as dragging the program icon into the trash.

    Usually – but Google “Macintosh uninstaller” to find applications which purport to do this better.

    Mostly this is discovering garbage that needs to be cleaned up.

  145. Though I am glad Apple is doing so well now, I almost miss the days before this “Era of Switchers,” you know back when the only people using a Mac were myself and like four other people… j/k 🙂 This kind of dribble is, I suppose, to be expected when such a migration begins en masse. Instead of typing 30 things you cannot understand, just post what I say to those new to the Mac, that is – Forget everything you learned on Windows and just use common sense, you will be much better off for it.

  146. Though I am glad Apple is doing so well now, I almost miss the days before this “Era of Switchers,” you know back when the only people using a Mac were myself and like four other people… j/k 🙂 This kind of dribble is, I suppose, to be expected when such a migration begins en masse. Instead of typing 30 things you cannot understand, just post what I say to those new to the Mac, that is – Forget everything you learned on Windows and just use common sense, you will be much better off for it.

  147. Except, Adam, that your method provides no practical help whatsoever, and the only accomplishment you can claim is that you made the “switcher” feel inferior.

    Unlike this very helpful article, which is still garnering new comments after more than a year! Nice work, Dan!

  148. Except, Adam, that your method provides no practical help whatsoever, and the only accomplishment you can claim is that you made the “switcher” feel inferior.

    Unlike this very helpful article, which is still garnering new comments after more than a year! Nice work, Dan!

  149. To the contrary Mr. Seitler, the majority of switchers to the Mac come into it expecting it to work like Windows. The end result is the majority of returned Macs are done so by those who became frustrated that their Mac did not behave like their Dell, HP, generic econobox, etc.

    My statement still holds true and it’s not to make the switcher feel inferior. If all they have ever used is Windows you can make a list as long as you like because we’re comparing, pardon the pun, apples to oranges here.

    A Mac is not a Windows box, therefore one needs to forget everything they have learned about using a Windows PC and start fresh. Instead of thinking, “This is stupid, it doesn’t work like this in Windows,” they should say, “Oh so this is the way this should work!”

    Lather, rinse, and repeat.

  150. To the contrary Mr. Seitler, the majority of switchers to the Mac come into it expecting it to work like Windows. The end result is the majority of returned Macs are done so by those who became frustrated that their Mac did not behave like their Dell, HP, generic econobox, etc.

    My statement still holds true and it’s not to make the switcher feel inferior. If all they have ever used is Windows you can make a list as long as you like because we’re comparing, pardon the pun, apples to oranges here.

    A Mac is not a Windows box, therefore one needs to forget everything they have learned about using a Windows PC and start fresh. Instead of thinking, “This is stupid, it doesn’t work like this in Windows,” they should say, “Oh so this is the way this should work!”

    Lather, rinse, and repeat.

  151. No, this is comparing apples to oranges.

    I was talking about the “forget everything…use common sense” remark. Mac quirks only feel like “common sense” because you’re used to them.

  152. No, this is comparing apples to oranges.

    I was talking about the “forget everything…use common sense” remark. Mac quirks only feel like “common sense” because you’re used to them.

  153. I’ve been a Mac user nonstop since ’85 or ’86 and I remember ridiculing Windows as a cheap, clunky knockoff when it first came out.

    That having been said, I think pages like these are wonderful. Anybody is going to have issues when trying a new OS and they should have some idea of what to expect. I remember having similar “issues” when I first started using Gnome, but I got over it (though sometimes, when I switch back and forth between Linux and OS X, I still get thrown off with the ctl/cmd key for shortcuts, and my Mighty Mouse and trackpad work completely differently on each OS).

    Come to think of it, I think EVERYBODY should regularly use more than one OS (dualboot anyone?). It keeps you flexible.

  154. I’ve been a Mac user nonstop since ’85 or ’86 and I remember ridiculing Windows as a cheap, clunky knockoff when it first came out.

    That having been said, I think pages like these are wonderful. Anybody is going to have issues when trying a new OS and they should have some idea of what to expect. I remember having similar “issues” when I first started using Gnome, but I got over it (though sometimes, when I switch back and forth between Linux and OS X, I still get thrown off with the ctl/cmd key for shortcuts, and my Mighty Mouse and trackpad work completely differently on each OS).

    Come to think of it, I think EVERYBODY should regularly use more than one OS (dualboot anyone?). It keeps you flexible.

  155. Not realizing that many Mac users are religious fanatics who’s zeal for Mac far exceeds any ability to accept any criticism of Apple products. And finding yourself at the broadside of a tirade because you expressed a failing or inconvenience of OSX or iPhone.

    I swear, I am so thankful that most Mac users are anti-gun liberals because it’s clear that many would be ready to kill over any slight of Apple or Steve Jobs.

    – Saj

  156. Not realizing that many Mac users are religious fanatics who’s zeal for Mac far exceeds any ability to accept any criticism of Apple products. And finding yourself at the broadside of a tirade because you expressed a failing or inconvenience of OSX or iPhone.

    I swear, I am so thankful that most Mac users are anti-gun liberals because it’s clear that many would be ready to kill over any slight of Apple or Steve Jobs.

    – Saj

  157. I get so many windows users converting to mac hardware and software due to them finding open source applications build for linux or freebsd to save on fees. I love it when I go to a new client that just made the switch and they hire a temp employee with no mac experience and I get the kick ass call, “I think something is wrong theres no start button.”

  158. I get so many windows users converting to mac hardware and software due to them finding open source applications build for linux or freebsd to save on fees. I love it when I go to a new client that just made the switch and they hire a temp employee with no mac experience and I get the kick ass call, “I think something is wrong theres no start button.”

  159. Two years ago, I’d have agreed with you. But hey, with Parallels, I am running OS X & XP.

    And Vista…well…let’s just say “Balmer” should be fired!

  160. Two years ago, I’d have agreed with you. But hey, with Parallels, I am running OS X & XP.

    And Vista…well…let’s just say “Balmer” should be fired!

  161. Hello Dan
    Yesterday I read your article about the top 30 mistakes made by new mac users. One mistake was not knowing the difference between the return and enter key. Last night I recall checking this on my macbook and finding that enter allows you to rename a file while return opens it; however, today they both rename the file. They seem to do the same thing. I’m not sure if I imagined the difference or not. So far my web searches show everyone saying that they both rename it. Will you please offer me some advice on this issue
    Thanks,
    Kevin

  162. Hello Dan
    Yesterday I read your article about the top 30 mistakes made by new mac users. One mistake was not knowing the difference between the return and enter key. Last night I recall checking this on my macbook and finding that enter allows you to rename a file while return opens it; however, today they both rename the file. They seem to do the same thing. I’m not sure if I imagined the difference or not. So far my web searches show everyone saying that they both rename it. Will you please offer me some advice on this issue
    Thanks,
    Kevin

  163. Mistakes made by people switching from one car to another:

    1. Thinking the reverse is in the same place as in their car.

    2. Thinking the clutch goes just as deep as in their car.

    3. Expecting all the buttons and knobs to be exactly in the same place…

    it’s not much of a difference but nobody makes this kind of list.

    here’s a few more:

    Mistakes made when switching from one Microwave oven to another.

    Mistakes made when switching from one remote tv control to another

    Mistakes made when switching to a fountain pen from a ballpoint….

    life is not flat. You got to keep on getting and honing skills… that’s the big picture.

    enjoy!

  164. Mistakes made by people switching from one car to another:

    1. Thinking the reverse is in the same place as in their car.

    2. Thinking the clutch goes just as deep as in their car.

    3. Expecting all the buttons and knobs to be exactly in the same place…

    it’s not much of a difference but nobody makes this kind of list.

    here’s a few more:

    Mistakes made when switching from one Microwave oven to another.

    Mistakes made when switching from one remote tv control to another

    Mistakes made when switching to a fountain pen from a ballpoint….

    life is not flat. You got to keep on getting and honing skills… that’s the big picture.

    enjoy!

  165. The main thing I’ve learned since I bought a Mac a year and a half ago is that while Windows tends to represent the general populate both good and bad and Linux tends to represent a great many dissatisfied Windows users and a great many more ‘elitist pricks’ that don’t think you have any business using Linux unless you suffer may years of pain at compiling the OS yourself and doing everything from a command line, the Mac community is comprised of a lot of very smug follower types known inside the community as ‘fanboys’. They tend to be intolerant of other people and individual thought and seem to prefer having Steve Jobs think for them, tell them what to buy and how to buy it (gotta love that unexpandable iMac thing that has you paying out for a new computer every other year and still not having enough GPU power to play a decent 3D game).

    Still, the operating system itself is a nice piece of work. I hated the older Mac operating system (that would be OS9 and earlier) as it’s stupifies the experience, can’t multitask to save its life and yet manages to well represent the fanboy types by forcing you to be a borg and do everything the same way. OS X is actually Unix underneath (ok, BSD Unix) and therefore offers quite a different level of experience if you ever lift up the hood. Having used several flavors of Linux over the years, I find OS X quite refreshing in some respects. While it could use some theming options (I know; I know; Steve decides FOR you…although for awhile there he couldn’t seem to make up his mind whether he liked Aqua or Brushed Metal… too bad… I kind of preferred Aqua myself), it does at least make the every day stuff relatively pain-free and software installation on both Windows and Linux systems alike look just plain STUPID by comparison. It’s just too bad it’s attached to a company that is run by a Megalomaniac and won’t let its users own a simple mid-range expandable tower without having to hack together one themselves (witness the lawsuit against Psystar).

    Thus, while I like the OS, I don’t like about 50% of the community around it because they’re pinheads. I have a similar distaste for most Linux users who also act like elitist pinheads…just nerdier ones. And while I generally despise Bill Gates and Microsoft, at least the Windows community represents people, not just pricks. You don’t find them nit-picking about whether someone adjusts their windows from the corners or sides and get upset because someone likes to maximize a program’s screen while using it to focus their attention, etc. whereas Mac users seem to think everyone should think alike (reminds me of fascism in some respects, actually) and Linux thinks everyone should have every choice imaginable EXCEPT the right to make money from software or a unified interface. So in truth, I find all three major operating systems and their users rather flawed. You really have to use them all for some time to get that impression and have the ability to think for yourself instead of being a puppet of someone else. I guess that explains why I liked the Commodore Amiga (it having things in common with all three in some respects and yet different from all as well, but sadly it was run by imbeciles, but that’s another matter).

    But don’t think for a minute a list like this represents anything other than Mac users having too much time wasting time rather than doing something useful. For all the claims about forgetting about the computer and just getting to work, I find Mac users spend a LOT of time thinking about their computers and many even worshiping it or Steve Jobs in the process. It’s pathetic, really.

  166. The main thing I’ve learned since I bought a Mac a year and a half ago is that while Windows tends to represent the general populate both good and bad and Linux tends to represent a great many dissatisfied Windows users and a great many more ‘elitist pricks’ that don’t think you have any business using Linux unless you suffer may years of pain at compiling the OS yourself and doing everything from a command line, the Mac community is comprised of a lot of very smug follower types known inside the community as ‘fanboys’. They tend to be intolerant of other people and individual thought and seem to prefer having Steve Jobs think for them, tell them what to buy and how to buy it (gotta love that unexpandable iMac thing that has you paying out for a new computer every other year and still not having enough GPU power to play a decent 3D game).

    Still, the operating system itself is a nice piece of work. I hated the older Mac operating system (that would be OS9 and earlier) as it’s stupifies the experience, can’t multitask to save its life and yet manages to well represent the fanboy types by forcing you to be a borg and do everything the same way. OS X is actually Unix underneath (ok, BSD Unix) and therefore offers quite a different level of experience if you ever lift up the hood. Having used several flavors of Linux over the years, I find OS X quite refreshing in some respects. While it could use some theming options (I know; I know; Steve decides FOR you…although for awhile there he couldn’t seem to make up his mind whether he liked Aqua or Brushed Metal… too bad… I kind of preferred Aqua myself), it does at least make the every day stuff relatively pain-free and software installation on both Windows and Linux systems alike look just plain STUPID by comparison. It’s just too bad it’s attached to a company that is run by a Megalomaniac and won’t let its users own a simple mid-range expandable tower without having to hack together one themselves (witness the lawsuit against Psystar).

    Thus, while I like the OS, I don’t like about 50% of the community around it because they’re pinheads. I have a similar distaste for most Linux users who also act like elitist pinheads…just nerdier ones. And while I generally despise Bill Gates and Microsoft, at least the Windows community represents people, not just pricks. You don’t find them nit-picking about whether someone adjusts their windows from the corners or sides and get upset because someone likes to maximize a program’s screen while using it to focus their attention, etc. whereas Mac users seem to think everyone should think alike (reminds me of fascism in some respects, actually) and Linux thinks everyone should have every choice imaginable EXCEPT the right to make money from software or a unified interface. So in truth, I find all three major operating systems and their users rather flawed. You really have to use them all for some time to get that impression and have the ability to think for yourself instead of being a puppet of someone else. I guess that explains why I liked the Commodore Amiga (it having things in common with all three in some respects and yet different from all as well, but sadly it was run by imbeciles, but that’s another matter).

    But don’t think for a minute a list like this represents anything other than Mac users having too much time wasting time rather than doing something useful. For all the claims about forgetting about the computer and just getting to work, I find Mac users spend a LOT of time thinking about their computers and many even worshiping it or Steve Jobs in the process. It’s pathetic, really.

  167. Wow, Ford. Doug Adams must be turning in his grave. He was one of those Mac "fanboys".

    Remember, when you point your finger at someone else, there are 3 fingers pointing back at yourself.

  168. Wow, Ford. Doug Adams must be turning in his grave. He was one of those Mac "fanboys".

    Remember, when you point your finger at someone else, there are 3 fingers pointing back at yourself.

  169. It seems like there’s a lot of confusion here. The article is about mistakes that PC users make when they switch to Macs–it doesn’t purport to be a list of flaws of the Mac OS. And yet it seems like a lot of commenters are interpreting it that way.

  170. It seems like there’s a lot of confusion here. The article is about mistakes that PC users make when they switch to Macs–it doesn’t purport to be a list of flaws of the Mac OS. And yet it seems like a lot of commenters are interpreting it that way.

  171. david– that was my thought exactly. I think the original description was a list of errors that former PC users make when converting to a Mac. These Mac folks are a little touchy aren’t they?

  172. david– that was my thought exactly. I think the original description was a list of errors that former PC users make when converting to a Mac. These Mac folks are a little touchy aren’t they?

  173. For a Windows user like me it seems weird to leave apps open; doesn’t that gobble up precious memory, and slow down the OS, regardless of which OS you use?

    I’ve used both OS’s and the use of shotcut keys in Windows cannot reach the versatility of QuickSilver by a long shot, but neither OS demands or encourages you to use keyboard shortcuts.

  174. For a Windows user like me it seems weird to leave apps open; doesn’t that gobble up precious memory, and slow down the OS, regardless of which OS you use?

    I’ve used both OS’s and the use of shotcut keys in Windows cannot reach the versatility of QuickSilver by a long shot, but neither OS demands or encourages you to use keyboard shortcuts.

  175. @Marco, re: leaving apps open:

    I don’t know Apple’s rationale on this… and I don’t know how far back the “tradition” goes. But I suppose the existence of the Menu Bar makes it at least possible.

    From personal experience, I’ve closed browser windows I shouldn’t have. And gratefully, it’s faster to launch a new window that it is to fire up the app from scratch. With the Menu Bar sitting there waiting for you, you can just start where you left off right from the History.

    You can not do this in Windows, because the menu is in the window’s toobar instead of in a Menu Bar. No window = No menu, therefore, no reason to keep the app open in Windows.

    In OS X, it’s the windows which use most of the CPU cycles, the apps not so much. OS X’s preemptive multitasking takes care of the remaining CPU and memory management. It does a pretty impressive job.

  176. @Marco, re: leaving apps open:

    I don’t know Apple’s rationale on this… and I don’t know how far back the “tradition” goes. But I suppose the existence of the Menu Bar makes it at least possible.

    From personal experience, I’ve closed browser windows I shouldn’t have. And gratefully, it’s faster to launch a new window that it is to fire up the app from scratch. With the Menu Bar sitting there waiting for you, you can just start where you left off right from the History.

    You can not do this in Windows, because the menu is in the window’s toobar instead of in a Menu Bar. No window = No menu, therefore, no reason to keep the app open in Windows.

    In OS X, it’s the windows which use most of the CPU cycles, the apps not so much. OS X’s preemptive multitasking takes care of the remaining CPU and memory management. It does a pretty impressive job.

  177. I don’t know Apple’s rationale about leaving apps open… and I don’t know how far back the “tradition” goes. But I suppose the existence of the Menu Bar is what makes it at least possible.

    From personal experience, I know I’ve closed browser windows I shouldn’t have, for example. Gratefully, it’s faster to launch a new window right up from the History in the Menu Bar than it is to fire up the app from scratch and restore the session.

    (Of course, Apple had this arrangement way before modern browsers could do such a thing as a session restore, so in the past it was even more of a godsend.)

    This is impossible in Windows, because the menu is in the window’s toolbar instead of a separate Menu Bar. (MSFT wanted to make it look like they weren’t copying Apple.)

    Since No window = No menu, there was no reason for MSFT to establish a pattern of keeping apps running with a closed window. OTOH, for Apple, keeping apps open with easy access to the Menu Bar makes sense for most OS X apps. (There are a few exceptions like utilities.)

    As for CPU cycles, in Mac OS X, it’s the windows which use most of the CPU power… the apps themselves not so much. OS X’s preemptive multitasking does a pretty impressive job of CPU and memory allocation, even for running apps that running that are not actively being used.

    Considering a Mac doesn’t waste so many CPU cycles on anti-malware and anti-junkware, at the very least it’s a wash. Some would contend this puts the Mac ahead.

  178. I don’t know Apple’s rationale about leaving apps open… and I don’t know how far back the “tradition” goes. But I suppose the existence of the Menu Bar is what makes it at least possible.

    From personal experience, I know I’ve closed browser windows I shouldn’t have, for example. Gratefully, it’s faster to launch a new window right up from the History in the Menu Bar than it is to fire up the app from scratch and restore the session.

    (Of course, Apple had this arrangement way before modern browsers could do such a thing as a session restore, so in the past it was even more of a godsend.)

    This is impossible in Windows, because the menu is in the window’s toolbar instead of a separate Menu Bar. (MSFT wanted to make it look like they weren’t copying Apple.)

    Since No window = No menu, there was no reason for MSFT to establish a pattern of keeping apps running with a closed window. OTOH, for Apple, keeping apps open with easy access to the Menu Bar makes sense for most OS X apps. (There are a few exceptions like utilities.)

    As for CPU cycles, in Mac OS X, it’s the windows which use most of the CPU power… the apps themselves not so much. OS X’s preemptive multitasking does a pretty impressive job of CPU and memory allocation, even for running apps that running that are not actively being used.

    Considering a Mac doesn’t waste so many CPU cycles on anti-malware and anti-junkware, at the very least it’s a wash. Some would contend this puts the Mac ahead.

  179. 16. Where's "the internet"? (looking for the Windows Internet Explorer "e" icon)

    >>Well there's O for Opera, the Fox for Firefox, the footprint for Flock. Have you ever thought that some software won't work on Macs as Mac software won't work on Windoze?

    17. Repeatedly hitting the Apple key expecting the Apple menu to pop up (confused with Windows Key and Start Menu concept)

    >>Uh, where's the key labeled "Apple"? Looks like there's a key called Command, but no Apple.

    18. Thinking the green "+" button maximises a window to full screen (not realising that Apple's maximise philosophy is to only make a window as big as it needs to be to comfortably fit the width of content currently being displayed)

    >>Which is right for Apple to do so because there's something called fullscreen mode which is also available on Windoze

    19. Looking in vain for an uninstaller app, because they don't realise that uninstalling an application on Mac is as easy as dragging the program icon into the trash.

    >>Again, common sense. On your mounted disk image, if there's no uninstall, use the Trash.

    20. Minimising windows all the time rather than using "hide", leaving the document section of the doc littered with forgotten minimised windows (that are quietly occupying system resources).

    >>If you're new to an OS, you play with it, including ways to quit your apps. You'll find "Hide" near "Quit"

    21. Double-clicking dock icons.

    >>Again, their lack of common sense. Macs work differently than Windows.

    22. Inadvertant click-drags and removing programs from the dock in the process.

    >>What are trying to do? Make a shortcut on your desktop? You drag the app onto the dock to add it, therefore you drag it off to remove it. Simple vice-versa.

    23. Saving everything to the desktop or somewhere on the hard drive other than their home folder

    >>You must love clutter.

    24. Trying to load documents or programs multiple times because they don't recognise the progress indicators (sound of hard drive grinding, CD spinning, Mac spinning beachball, browser status bar)

    >>Give me an example of a PC that has never made noise

    25. Not understanding that the dock is used to both launch and return to a program …

    >>If you can click it once, click it again

    26. Inability to work with multiple documents on-screen at the same time, because they have only ever learned to use Windows' maximise mode which always makes everything full-screen

    >>That's why windows on Macs open up smaller, so you can work with more windows

    27. Confusing "delete" with "backspace" (because Apple has two keys named "delete" on the keyboard, one of which does forward delete and the other backward delete. Way to go, usability geniuses).

    >>Note that one has an icon indicating it is right-delete

    28. Expecting "home" and "end" keys to go the beginning and end of a line, rather than beginning and end of a document.

    >>Apple actually implements this well. If you're at "Home" then you're at the beginning. If you're at "End" then your at the end of the document

    29. Not realising that when you copy a folder over an existing one, OS X -replaces- the destination folder rather than merging the contents, which is what Windows does.

    >>If you merge, what's the new folder name?

    30. Looking for the "complicated" way of doing everything. For example, trying to go into system preferences and right-clicking on the networking icon in order to find available wireless networks, rather than just clicking on the Airport icon in the menu bar and selecting the relevant wireless network.

    >>Just pure ignorance

  180. One of the biggest reasons why people make these mistakes is because they don't realize the ease of a Mac, like clicking once to open an app, drag n drop for almost everything, one-step installation for most apps, uninstalling apps, connecting to the Internet.

    One thing about the E = Net, have you not used Firefox?

    1. Closing an application window, thinking it has quit.

    >>Can you not see the app name in the menubar? It means it's still running.

    2. Downloading an app and running it from the disk image.

    >>Read. It says "Drag to your Applications folder." (Most do, only a few don't) Even if you do quit the app, locate the disk image and mount it by double-clicking.

    3. Creating endless untitled folders

    >>WTF????

    4. Using Safari's Google search to get to a website

    >>Why would anyone do that?

    5. Confusing the concept of wallpaper with screensaver.

    >>Than what were you thinking with your Windoze box?

    6. Double-clicking a window thinking it will maximise it, but instead sending it to the dock

    >>This one's actually valid.

    7. Not understanding the usefulness of column view and leaving everything in icon view

    >>Again, valid

    8. Not using any keyboard shortcuts

    >>Weren't you a compulsive Ctrl-S-er?

    9. Thinking that now they've got rid of Windows they won't have problems of _any_ sort on their Mac

    >>Way less

    10. Renaming desktop icons to random characters because they don't understand the difference between the enter and the return key on Mac. (Enter puts an icon into rename mode).

    >>That's why there's Undo.

    11. People trying to find the menus on a window, not realising they're always at the top of the screen

    >>Are you blind? You've lost 1 cm of screen space, why don't you check that out?

    12. Trying to resize windows from the edge rather than the drag area on the corner

    >>How is this valid? This works on Windows too.

    13. Trying to use the CTRL key rather than CMD key for shortcuts.

    >>Like I said, Macs are designed for ease. The Ctrl is so hard to reach, it would be illogical that using Cmd would seem better. Common sense. Use it.

    14. Thinking it'll be easy to get a stuck CD out.

    >>How would this be a mistake?

    15. Installing a program every time they want to run it because they think the installer _is_ the program.

    >>The installer isn't the program on Windows. Why would it apply here?

  181. One of the biggest reasons why people make these mistakes is because they don't realize the ease of a Mac, like clicking once to open an app, drag n drop for almost everything, one-step installation for most apps, uninstalling apps, connecting to the Internet.

    One thing about the E = Net, have you not used Firefox?

    1. Closing an application window, thinking it has quit.

    >>Can you not see the app name in the menubar? It means it's still running.

    2. Downloading an app and running it from the disk image.

    >>Read. It says "Drag to your Applications folder." (Most do, only a few don't) Even if you do quit the app, locate the disk image and mount it by double-clicking.

    3. Creating endless untitled folders

    >>WTF????

    4. Using Safari's Google search to get to a website

    >>Why would anyone do that?

    5. Confusing the concept of wallpaper with screensaver.

    >>Than what were you thinking with your Windoze box?

    6. Double-clicking a window thinking it will maximise it, but instead sending it to the dock

    >>This one's actually valid.

    7. Not understanding the usefulness of column view and leaving everything in icon view

    >>Again, valid

    8. Not using any keyboard shortcuts

    >>Weren't you a compulsive Ctrl-S-er?

    9. Thinking that now they've got rid of Windows they won't have problems of _any_ sort on their Mac

    >>Way less

    10. Renaming desktop icons to random characters because they don't understand the difference between the enter and the return key on Mac. (Enter puts an icon into rename mode).

    >>That's why there's Undo.

    11. People trying to find the menus on a window, not realising they're always at the top of the screen

    >>Are you blind? You've lost 1 cm of screen space, why don't you check that out?

    12. Trying to resize windows from the edge rather than the drag area on the corner

    >>How is this valid? This works on Windows too.

    13. Trying to use the CTRL key rather than CMD key for shortcuts.

    >>Like I said, Macs are designed for ease. The Ctrl is so hard to reach, it would be illogical that using Cmd would seem better. Common sense. Use it.

    14. Thinking it'll be easy to get a stuck CD out.

    >>How would this be a mistake?

    15. Installing a program every time they want to run it because they think the installer _is_ the program.

    >>The installer isn't the program on Windows. Why would it apply here?

  182. 16. Where's "the internet"? (looking for the Windows Internet Explorer "e" icon)

    >>Well there's O for Opera, the Fox for Firefox, the footprint for Flock. Have you ever thought that some software won't work on Macs as Mac software won't work on Windoze?

    17. Repeatedly hitting the Apple key expecting the Apple menu to pop up (confused with Windows Key and Start Menu concept)

    >>Uh, where's the key labeled "Apple"? Looks like there's a key called Command, but no Apple.

    18. Thinking the green "+" button maximises a window to full screen (not realising that Apple's maximise philosophy is to only make a window as big as it needs to be to comfortably fit the width of content currently being displayed)

    >>Which is right for Apple to do so because there's something called fullscreen mode which is also available on Windoze

    19. Looking in vain for an uninstaller app, because they don't realise that uninstalling an application on Mac is as easy as dragging the program icon into the trash.

    >>Again, common sense. On your mounted disk image, if there's no uninstall, use the Trash.

    20. Minimising windows all the time rather than using "hide", leaving the document section of the doc littered with forgotten minimised windows (that are quietly occupying system resources).

    >>If you're new to an OS, you play with it, including ways to quit your apps. You'll find "Hide" near "Quit"

    21. Double-clicking dock icons.

    >>Again, their lack of common sense. Macs work differently than Windows.

    22. Inadvertant click-drags and removing programs from the dock in the process.

    >>What are trying to do? Make a shortcut on your desktop? You drag the app onto the dock to add it, therefore you drag it off to remove it. Simple vice-versa.

    23. Saving everything to the desktop or somewhere on the hard drive other than their home folder

    >>You must love clutter.

    24. Trying to load documents or programs multiple times because they don't recognise the progress indicators (sound of hard drive grinding, CD spinning, Mac spinning beachball, browser status bar)

    >>Give me an example of a PC that has never made noise

    25. Not understanding that the dock is used to both launch and return to a program …

    >>If you can click it once, click it again

    26. Inability to work with multiple documents on-screen at the same time, because they have only ever learned to use Windows' maximise mode which always makes everything full-screen

    >>That's why windows on Macs open up smaller, so you can work with more windows

    27. Confusing "delete" with "backspace" (because Apple has two keys named "delete" on the keyboard, one of which does forward delete and the other backward delete. Way to go, usability geniuses).

    >>Note that one has an icon indicating it is right-delete

    28. Expecting "home" and "end" keys to go the beginning and end of a line, rather than beginning and end of a document.

    >>Apple actually implements this well. If you're at "Home" then you're at the beginning. If you're at "End" then your at the end of the document

    29. Not realising that when you copy a folder over an existing one, OS X -replaces- the destination folder rather than merging the contents, which is what Windows does.

    >>If you merge, what's the new folder name?

    30. Looking for the "complicated" way of doing everything. For example, trying to go into system preferences and right-clicking on the networking icon in order to find available wireless networks, rather than just clicking on the Airport icon in the menu bar and selecting the relevant wireless network.

    >>Just pure ignorance

  183. Marko,

    For people who have only ever used Win PCs, "common sense" = "how Windows does it." *Of course* we're talking about things that are obvious to a Mac user. The problem is, Win PCs are so ubiquitous (even today) that people have a tendency to assume that the way Win does something is the way computers are "supposed" to do it.

    Nobody here is really claiming that Apple has done anything wrong, except perhaps that they missed a great opportunity to help potential "switchers" avoid the frustration and confusion that comes the first time you faceplant on one of these cultural differences.

    Which is exactly the sort of thing we're talking about. One of the top mistakes made by someone traveling out of the USA for the first time could be pointing at something using only your index finger (which is a rude gesture in many other cultures). While this can be called "pure ignorance," it's not willful ignorance; if your whole life was spent in a culture where you point with your index finger, you aren't even going to question the possibility that other cultures don't.

    And that's the whole point of the article (a point which went right over your head, apparently): a collection of things that Windows users may never even consider might be handled differently in Macs.

    I'm happy for you that you're so enlightened, Marko. It's a shame that you use that enlightenment to belittle others, rather than to aid their own understanding.

    The rest of us? We're trying to help ease the learning curve.

  184. Marko,

    For people who have only ever used Win PCs, "common sense" = "how Windows does it." *Of course* we're talking about things that are obvious to a Mac user. The problem is, Win PCs are so ubiquitous (even today) that people have a tendency to assume that the way Win does something is the way computers are "supposed" to do it.

    Nobody here is really claiming that Apple has done anything wrong, except perhaps that they missed a great opportunity to help potential "switchers" avoid the frustration and confusion that comes the first time you faceplant on one of these cultural differences.

    Which is exactly the sort of thing we're talking about. One of the top mistakes made by someone traveling out of the USA for the first time could be pointing at something using only your index finger (which is a rude gesture in many other cultures). While this can be called "pure ignorance," it's not willful ignorance; if your whole life was spent in a culture where you point with your index finger, you aren't even going to question the possibility that other cultures don't.

    And that's the whole point of the article (a point which went right over your head, apparently): a collection of things that Windows users may never even consider might be handled differently in Macs.

    I'm happy for you that you're so enlightened, Marko. It's a shame that you use that enlightenment to belittle others, rather than to aid their own understanding.

    The rest of us? We're trying to help ease the learning curve.

  185. I have been a Mac user for many years because that is what I got as a xmas present, and I have recently ventured into Windows. There are many things I like better in Windows:

    1. Mouse acceleration feels more natural (this one is my favourite)
    2. Windows taskbar allows me to see what's running at a glance, rather than a little dot under running apps, plus the name of running apps is shown on taskbar buttons.
    3. Resize windows from any side or corner
    4. Menus within active window better than single menu bar for multiple-display setups, plus I don't need to give focus to a window to access its menus, I simple click the menu directly.
    5. No need to give focus to a window or app in order to click a buttton (Mac: click window, then click button; Windows: click button directly)

    That's my two cents.

  186. I have been a Mac user for many years because that is what I got as a xmas present, and I have recently ventured into Windows. There are many things I like better in Windows:

    1. Mouse acceleration feels more natural (this one is my favourite)
    2. Windows taskbar allows me to see what's running at a glance, rather than a little dot under running apps, plus the name of running apps is shown on taskbar buttons.
    3. Resize windows from any side or corner
    4. Menus within active window better than single menu bar for multiple-display setups, plus I don't need to give focus to a window to access its menus, I simple click the menu directly.
    5. No need to give focus to a window or app in order to click a buttton (Mac: click window, then click button; Windows: click button directly)

    That's my two cents.

  187. I use a PC, and the only mistakes I think I would make using a Mac, is always doing things the hard way, and always checking stuff, because as a PC user, it’s very hard to come to terms with the fact that a computer of any kind can work without several tens of errors per day. You expect a computer to screw stuff up, even itself, and you just take it for granted. That’s probably why you never get relevant search results for ‘switch to windows’, because it just doesn’t happen. PC users are so happy about the lack of errors after they switch to Mac, and Mac users don’t want a machine that has fatal errors on a regular basis.

  188. I use a PC, and the only mistakes I think I would make using a Mac, is always doing things the hard way, and always checking stuff, because as a PC user, it’s very hard to come to terms with the fact that a computer of any kind can work without several tens of errors per day. You expect a computer to screw stuff up, even itself, and you just take it for granted. That’s probably why you never get relevant search results for ‘switch to windows’, because it just doesn’t happen. PC users are so happy about the lack of errors after they switch to Mac, and Mac users don’t want a machine that has fatal errors on a regular basis.

  189. Half the things you said were stupid or not true….im on a mac and it is easier to use than a pc in my opinion

  190. Half the things you said were stupid or not true….im on a mac and it is easier to use than a pc in my opinion

  191. I recently bought a Mac within the last week. I switched over for many reasons, the main being that I work as an IT on PC’s all day. Being and IT has helped me see many flaws and loopholes in the OS of the PC. That being said, I thought that switching over would be a lot easier than it has been. What I did not realize is that by working on PC’s all day I had developed habits with shortcuts and just movements around the drive. While I have done almost everything on the list above, I am still learning by experimenting and playing around. What people don’t understand it that since they are two different Os’s they will be different. Whether you are switching from MAC to Windows or visa versa, you have to work for the computer before the computer can work for you.

  192. I recently bought a Mac within the last week. I switched over for many reasons, the main being that I work as an IT on PC’s all day. Being and IT has helped me see many flaws and loopholes in the OS of the PC. That being said, I thought that switching over would be a lot easier than it has been. What I did not realize is that by working on PC’s all day I had developed habits with shortcuts and just movements around the drive. While I have done almost everything on the list above, I am still learning by experimenting and playing around. What people don’t understand it that since they are two different Os’s they will be different. Whether you are switching from MAC to Windows or visa versa, you have to work for the computer before the computer can work for you.

  193. whenever i download something , when i open the file , my mac says can not run is DOS mode with a load of random symbols how do i stop this happening and actually download the file???

    send me an email if you know the answer 🙂 bad-smell@hotmail.com

  194. whenever i download something , when i open the file , my mac says can not run is DOS mode with a load of random symbols how do i stop this happening and actually download the file???

    send me an email if you know the answer 🙂 bad-smell@hotmail.com

  195. Fun way to recognize your own mistakes dude. The thing is that most of the mistakes mentioned are made by someone who has never used either a mac or PC in his/her life… PS: I am a mac user

  196. Fun way to recognize your own mistakes dude. The thing is that most of the mistakes mentioned are made by someone who has never used either a mac or PC in his/her life… PS: I am a mac user

  197. This would have been really helpful if the author had explained how to actually do the things that the noobs were doing wrong instead of just pointing out what they were.

  198. This would have been really helpful if the author had explained how to actually do the things that the noobs were doing wrong instead of just pointing out what they were.

  199. Very useful article as I got a Mac yesterday and am still getting used to the switchover.

    A pitty about those Mac users who have commented and missed the point that the article is an apple advocate.

    Ahh well, shows that users of all OSs come with a range of IQs…

  200. I got so many giggles out of the comments.. Funny about the guys trying to stick up for Mac when its not even putting it down. Reminds me of a child trying to defend something they have done/own.

    Great article tho 😉

  201. I don’t know why this article praises the ease of usability of a MAC. I use MAC at work (I work with advertising) and own a PC at home. I find PCs way more intuitive to use, partially because we’ve been conditioned our whole lives to use Windows (which proves the success of the system). Many of the things mentioned here, I can also do on my Windows 7 with just as much ease, if not more. Other than quality of graphics, quality of sound and virus issues, I’m not that impressed with MACs. I am 26 y/o and think MACs are all about selling an idea of being “cool and hip” than anything else.

  202. We’re not convertingto mac hardware and software to “save on fees”. Gordon Bennet, we’ve had to remortgage our homes to afford the hardware in the first place. We’re converting mostly for the illusion of something better (and because we’re particularly fond of grey).

  203. not true,.some mac apps do have uninstaller, not just dragging them to trash. (Sometimes) Dragging them to trash will leave some files/folder being left/not deleted during normal drag & drop to trash. You should update this post. It will make wrong assumption for those who switch/learn mac.

    I’ve been a long time Mac user,.so sometimes it’s baffled me whether this apps is simply to drag to trash or did it comes with uninstaller.
    Even with uninstaller,.some folder is left behind, so we need a separate uninstaller apps, just like windows does to clean up left folder and or registry entry.

  204. I’m afraid that I have to disagree here. I have been a Windows user all my life. I started using a Mac 5 months ago and i already know how to use it better. I have spent much less time looking for things such as settings,  and everything is where I would want it to be…

  205.  Im only replying to you cause i want everyone else who reads this to see that the morons below me are getting butt hurt over their operating systems and our touchy mofos.  This mistakes are not saying the system is any better than the other.  Its just simply mistakes that new users happen to make when they are mac os noobs.  If you read this and took any offense to this than you have prolly fallen to the Steve Jobs cult.  This article is not saying good or bad.. just mistakes quit fighting.

  206. A really friendly explanation of common, easy-to-fix mistakes new Mac users make. I’m so glad this article is completely free of haughty arrogance; the lack of even a trace of sneering disregard for new mac users is refreshing. It’s really quite lovely to see that Mac users are so welcoming to new members of their big happy family, and that they find such delight in helping them work out their issues, rather than simply compiling a list of them and collectively laughing at their apparent stupidity.

    Post made from a Windows PC.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s