I am doing some research for a class and I thought I would get the expert opinions of Classroom 2.0 folks. What are pros and cons of Macs vs. PCs? Thanks for your help!

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what are you looking for. pcs are great if you want to game, replace parts, and stay budget. macs are good for everything else.

be more specific. i was a happy pc user when i just wanted a powerful machine and i didn't do too much. now that i am all over everything (i program, design, and publish) i like the mac way way way better.
oh yeah, like Josh said, pcs are way way way easier to admin across large networks.
I imagine all of you following this discussion can see the circular nature of the debate. Wearing my teacher hat, I want to put in the most appropriate machines to support the teaching and learning environment. I want students to have the widest possible access to technology, regardless of platform. Wearing my technical hat I know that putting in a platform that cannot easily be supported by technicians causes havoc. This can be because of lack of experience or familiarity with an OS, or as in our case here in Victoria, Australia, being tied back to a Windows enterprise architecture. They actively tell technicians that they will have problems with any other platform.
We went through the MAC /PC debate years ago and slowly resolved most of the issues. Now schools are looking at UMPCs and Open Source software so are putting in Linux based systems and we are working through the exact same issues. For me, it is grin and bear it.
When choosing either hardware or software, everyone--teachers and IR folks--need to put the kids first. Everything has to start with the quality of their experience.

So, the "solution" is to allow kids to make THEIR choice. We recently purchased 50+ iMac 20" aluminums running BOTH MAC OS 10.5 and Windows XP. Students choose either OS at boot.

Bottom line: the more comfortable students are, the more focused and productive they are.

We have MS Office license available on both. But increasingly, students are using Web 2.0 applications for lots of their work.

A staff of three IR folks handles ALL of our 200+ machines and network.

96% of our machines are working at any one time.
I don't know that I've ever encountered someone with such dedication to disliking anything Apple.

I prefer Mac OS X to any flavor of Windows, but don't do IT stuff. In my classroom, I have a mix of PCs and Macs. The kids prefer the Macs, but mostly because they look cool. In the end, we're just using web 2.0 apps (aside from some movie and podcast stuff, which the mac is far better for) so the operating system doesn't matter.
I think that in todays world a new term is needed! Perhaps the new term should be Enterprise Computer or EC. Along with the EC we could have EC capable operating systems. This would help us to seperate the PC's of the world to ones that are appropriate for Enterprise Computing. From all my dealings with Macs, they are good PC's (Personal Computers), but they do not really fit the enterprise very well. It is not necessarily all Mac OS X's fault either, but more a lack of enterprise utilities available for the operating system. There could be certain criteria that would have to be met, before a computer or operating system would be classified as an "EC", otherwise they would just be known as "PC's".
On a side note (not for Indigo, but for everyone else), Mac's (Apple), Inspiron (Dell), Pavillion (HP) are ALL personal computers, and can be compared to each other. Mac OS X, Windows 98, Windows XP, Windows Vista, Ubuntu, Suse and the many other distributions of Linux are all operating systems and can be compared to each other. When people compare "Mac" or "PC" hardware, they should compare it to another hardware manufacturer. When they compare OS features, then they should compare it to other operating systems. Hardware is not all the same, it is the individual components that make up the computer that determine how good it is. Most of the components that are inside a Mac PC are made by the same companies that make parts for the other computer manufacturer's. (sorry for the rant)
While it is not baked into OD/WGM - loginscripts can do anything you can do with scripts.

For example I have a login scripts that checks a network mount for additional scripts and runs each of these. I have it freshly create an appropriate list of printers for each computer/User/Group

I can install critical updates at login time (if they are small and won't delay login too much) or tell the computer to power up at midnight and run a full FS scan for updates with Radmind.

It is the power of the BSD unix layer, and Apple's clear layout in the OS architecture that makes them pretty good Enterprise machines when you have the skills on hand. There are not as many good admin tools and you have to roll your own/use whats available in the community. While the discussion has been on clients, I'd say that at the server software layer, Apple products are actually a lot cheaper than a MS AD/Exchange etc solution.

There are better tools for "completing buildings" (reimaging?) than your techs are using. They should look into multicast ASR, or Radmind, they could then do their building in under a month. With Multicast ASR and good network infrastructure, they could do it in under a week...



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