Windows, You’re Fired!

That’s it. I’m done. Next pay day, I’m going to get a Mac, and retire the last Windows machine in the house.

The Tipping Point

broken-windowI’ve reached the tipping point, where I’ll actually be more productive on a Mac. I’ve used a Windows PC as my main work machine for my whole career, and I always thought it would slow me down to move, but that has changed.

I’ve been on this PC for somewhere between 2 and 3 years, running Windows 7. It seemed blisteringly fast when I first got it. Now, it’s just going the same way as every other Win PC I’ve ever used. Slows down, memory gets eaten up for unknown reasons, and it takes longer and longer to start or to restart.

I just had to restart, and I swear it took over 5 minutes before I could actually do anything. That’s just crazy.

This isn’t an underpowered PC either. It’s a proper tower with a decent processor and 8GB of RAM. The problem has to be inherent with Windows.

My office and home have become more Mac environments over time. I have two Macbook Airs (11-in and now a new 13-incher); our  family computer is an iMac (which has always performed well, even though it’s over 4 years old), and we have an iPad and half a dozen iPhones.

So, goodbye Windows. I can’t say I’ll miss you.

Changing The Way I Work

There’s another factor that has a bearing on this decision.

The way I use my computer now is distinctly different to the way I’ve worked for the previous couple of decades.

Much more is done in the browser (Chrome). Google is really my main operating system now. I can log on to any Chrome browser, and access all my files and 95% of the apps I use most: WordPress, Google Drive, Analytics, Convert.com, Infusionsoft, Moz, Basecamp, Huddle, etc.

The only piece of software I can’t really use in the browser is Photoshop, but if I had to, I’d be able to make do with Pix.lr.

Plus, I’m applying the 80/20 principle more and more in the way I work. It’s permeating everything I do… actually, it’s having more impact on the things I don’t do!

As a younger man, I took pride in throwing superhuman effort at a problem: creating new software, writing original code, spending days in Photoshop coming up with an original design.

Nowadays, I take the opposite approach! I now take pride in the work I don’t do: by delegating the right work to the right people, saying “no” to the wrong prospects, and focusing my time and resources on the correct problems.

So I’m typing less, and thinking more. That means what I need from my work computer is different. I just want it to be there, ready and able to open a new tab when I need it. And that means I need a Mac.

(Broken Windows picture credit Wallconvert.com)

18 Comments Leave a comment

  1. Sarah says:

    I made the switch 4 years ago, and the difference in start-up times still astounds me. I used to start up my PC, go make a coffee, chat with a co-worker, and read half the newspaper in the time it took to fully boot up. My 4 year old Macbook Pro is still ready the moment I open it. For that alone I love it.

    That said, have you tried running a defrag on you hard drive? Might speed things up.

    • Ben Hunt says:

      True, I haven’t defragged my PC for a while. (Even though Windows 7 isn’t supposed to need defragging… Yeah, right.)

      However, why should you need to be a system administrator and load extra software to make your computer do basic things, like turn on when you want to use it?

  2. jb says:

    Well switch for and SSD hard drive and you will feel, like you owns a brand new computer!!

  3. Jonathan says:

    Wow, it’s about freakin’ time Ben!!!

  4. Grant says:

    My PC boot up time is mainly caused by me adding too many plugins/start on boot programs.

    I was considering using virtual PCs since I have 16GB, with stripped down environment…..or maybe a MAC Pro with dual 30″ monitors is next.

  5. Gumaro says:

    can I have your old pc? :)

  6. Bruno says:

    So, why don’t you change to Linux instead? Jb’s idea to change install a SSD will be a real help too. And in the future you can use the money you save to family vacations or something else… :)

    • Ben Hunt says:

      It’s a good point. I’ve also considered a Chromebook instead of the MacBook Air I got last week. However, life does get easier when everything is from the same family: Apple TV, synching iPhone and iTunes etc.

  7. Leonard Jackson says:

    Congratulations on your switch away from Windows entirely. Honestly Windows is good for the mainstream, websurfing gaming audience but any power user should be using some sort of unix based system ie: Linux, Mac

    I switched to Linux as soon as I started design/development but ya, if you can afford a Mac then hellz ya. Until then I will be using the next best thing, Linux. Once I’m done school though, Mac it will be lol.

  8. Timo Kiander says:

    Hi Ben!

    Just wondering … I’m using a PC with two USB monitors. If I change to Mac (which I’m hoping to do soon), can I take advantage the current monitor setup with Mac?

    Cheers,
    Timo

    • Ben Hunt says:

      Timo, I’m facing the same dilemma. Of course, the default Mac monitors are wonderful, and I’ve seen plenty of offices with 2 or more screens on Macs, so I’m sure it’s not an issue.

  9. KGW says:

    I agree, they do degrade over time and Microsoft keeps on jumping the shark as a company. For those who can’t switch I’ve been using iolo System Mechanic Pro for many years for all my PCs at home and my work PCs. Friends have called me for PC help (you know the type). I just tell them to download System Mechanic and get themselves fixed. It’s worked.

    Defragging the drive regularly is a must for performance. System Mechanic has software that runs in the background to help prevent fragments but you still need to defrag, even an SSD.

    No, I don’t work for iolo, it’s just a good product.

  10. Bluehour says:

    I switched so long ago I can’t remember. I got tired of seeing “Bad command or file name.” Back when the PC snobs would ask “When are you going to get a real computer?”

    You nailed it Ben, “However, life does get easier when everything is from the same family: Apple TV, synching iPhone and iTunes etc.”

    Why has the computer always been about cheap rather than what it will do? I have a friend that was going to get a MacBook a while back but got a PC laptop instead, “Those Mac’s are a little pricey.” This is from a man that lives in one of the most exclusive neighborhoods in Oklahoma, the family all drive Lexus’s.

    He understands quality in a house and car but his computer has to be cheap. So rather than exploring digital media the family does spreadsheets, databases and writes letters.

    • Ben Hunt says:

      That’s funny.. Lexus is like the Apple of automobiles. Reliable and attractive in an understated way :-)

  11. Dave Vranicar says:

    Ben,

    I wish you the best with the change.

    I abandoned Windows three years ago and went entirely to a Macbook Pro.

    Overall, I’ve been really happy with the change.

    But I’m a very heaver user all the MS Office suite. I’ve found that the Mac versions of these Microsoft products are very buggy. And Microsoft doesn’t seem to care much about keeping them updated.

    Also, some of my favorite applications, including MindManager, have inferior versions for the Mac. Using Parallels isn’t a good choice for me. I’ve found it to be a performance hog, even with my memory maxed out.

    Consequently, I’ll be going BACK to Windows with my next computer. Hope you do better with the Mac than I’ve done.

    Best,

    Dave

    • Ben Hunt says:

      Thanks for the input Dave.

      I haven’t used MS Office for years. I’ve been quite happy with OpenOffice / LibreOffice, but really now most of my work is done on Google Drive, so truly OS-independent. Chrome is my main OS, I guess.