On my Mac Mini, which I have been using for a year and a half now, I also installed Windows 7 Ultimate edition and used it via bootcamp on a number of occasions. Throughout the Mac Mini’s use as an Apple computer and a Windows PC, I find one jarring factor that caused me to tilt in favour of the flexibility and robustness of Mac OS.
I realised that upon using the Windows 7 platform, though it is a very powerful OS, the OS can be bogged down by labor intensive programs, I noticed that when a program momentarily hangs, it causes the entire OS to hang with it. Though occasionally, there is a tendency for that to happen. It does not cause a complete crash, but these moments of inactivity, those moments where the computer would not respond at all, even the hang is caused by a small program that is running in the background can be a little bit frustrating in the long run. On the Mac OS however, when a program hangs (which is rare), it only affects the program and not the entire OS. I can still switch to other programs that are running and use them as normally as possible while I wait for the program to start responding again. It feels as if Mac OS has the capability to “compartmentalize” its issues or program bugs to the program itself and would rarely affect the entire OS system as a whole.
With that being said, I find it increasingly beneficial and comfortable using the Mac OS as compared to the Windows 7 platform. The sheer robustness of the OS coupled with its minimalistic feel to it, allows my Mac Mini to run almost error free for one and a half years. Of all the PCs that I bought, within 9 months, it would show its age and before the year ended, my PC would run into numerous errors and system slowdown that would ultimately lead to hardware failure within 2 years. These has led to significant expenses in upgrading or buying a new PC all the time. Coupled with the fact that you have to spend so much time rectifying the problem so that you could use the PC without any inconveniences just reduces the overall efficiency. I usually name my Mac Mini as The Silent Worker. Mainly, it is ultra silent, small and discreet, yet able to function and perform admirably even when subjected to heavy computational use. In other words, rarely made any ‘complaints’ and continues to be my faithful servant, serving my needs in all aspects.
If one were to ask me whether it would be a good time to upgrade after two years, I dont see a good reason why I should in the first place when it is still working perfectly. Besides, I just added 2 years of warranty under the Applecare scheme and that just cements my decision to use the Mac Mini till the warranty is over and beyond, when it starts to be breakdown. Otherwise, I would use it fully till the end of its lifetime. A new OS is coming out soon, called Lion and I would most likely get the upgrade software for my Mac Mini. New iterations of Mac Mini would surely come out and it would be exciting if it comes with an Intel i3 or i5 processor. That would make it a lean mean machine. Getting a new iMac is pretty tempting, but unless I have wads of cash to spend, I would most likely use my current mac mini till I graduate at least. I noticed a little bit of slowdown in its everyday usage, but I think that could easily be rectified by doing a clean reinstall of the entire OS and start from scratch (provided I have backups of all the essential data that I need). I could probably do it when Lion comes out, so that my Mac Mini would have a fresh feel to it.