Migrating from a PC to a Mac still remains a daunting task especially to those who are not so tech savvy. At this point in time where Apple has seemingly dominated the market for a number of years of its existence in the household and workplace, some people are still clueless about how to use a Mac but still very excited to get one for Christmas. Count me in!
If I were to have a Mac and replace my 8 year old Toshiba Satellite Pro A300 laptop which is running Windows 7 OS, I’d probably look into the following factors so the shifting won’t give me even the slightest headache:
The Image the Mac Advertisements Portray
Apple has done a great job advertising Mac while comparing it to a PC. It was cool and though I personally believe that the teasing is not all true, I can relate on the issues being discussed all throughout. As I myself was into using PC and Windows OS for a number of years already, I feel kind of excited having a Mac and dealing with the tech advancements of today – at least that is the impression I initially get.
One of the reasons why I was kind of holding back on switching to a Mac is the lacking of compatibility with Windows. This thought came out naturally (everything that’s new is intimidating), plus there was also a rumor about this which was circulating after its first release. But it’s just a rumor, in fact there are Mac alternatives often made good or even better than Windows programs. Most common Windows programs have a separate Mac version and a lot of external peripherals such as mice, keyboards, external hard drives and monitors are fully compatible with Mac’s OS.
Learn to Speak Mac
There are some terms that I should at least be familiar with before shifting to a Mac. Windows and Mac have their own terminologies. Some of the common and basic words and/or phrases and acronyms are the following:
|Windows Wallpaper||Mac Background|
|Windows Desktop||Mac Desktop|
|Windows Recycle Bin||Mac Trash|
|Windows Start Menu||Mac Dock|
|Windows Programs||Mac Apps|
|Windows Explorer||Finder App|
You can still use your Windows keyboard on Macs, however in this case:
- Windows key ~ Mac Command (Cmd) key
- Windows Control Key ~ Mac Control Key
- Windows Alt Key ~ Mac Option Key
For hard drive formats, these are essentials:
- Mac can read NTFS format and Windows hard drives are formatted as NTFS
- Windows can read HFS+ format and Mac hard drives are formatted as HFS+
- Both Mac and Windows read FAT which is the format for USB thumb drives
- Paragon NTFS for Mac allows Mac OS to read and write NTFS-formatted hard drives. The software also has a counterpart for Windows so it can read and write to HFS+
Your Fave Fonts
While Windows fonts are located in the folder %winddir%/fonts, Mac comes with the Font Book app for installing fonts. Note that each OS comes with its own proprietary fonts. So if you have documents that use Windows fonts, they will automatically be substituted with Mac fonts when opened on a Mac if not installed yet. Hey, you can install MS Office for Mac too which will let you grab some Windows fonts you’ve loved through the years.
Become ‘Mac-handed’ when Typing
New Mac keyboard shortcuts I think will give me plenty of time to get used to it. I have managed to get a list of common keyboard shortcuts for Windows and Mac, but if you are eager to know more available shortcuts, a cheatsheet can be downloaded for your quick reference.
|Copy||Ctrl + C||Cmd + C|
|Paste||Ctrl + V||Cmd + V|
|Cut||Ctrl + X||Cmd+X not working for Mac, use copy & paste instead|
|Minimize current window||Windows + M||Cmd + H|
|Switch open programs||Alt + Tab or Windows + Tab||Cmd + Tab|
|Close programs||Alt + F4||Cmd + Q|
|Refresh||F5 or Ctrl + R||Cmd + R|
Hassle-free Moving of Files
Now that I know some basic terms and understand the correct drive formatting, I guess it’s time to make a decision on moving files from Windows to Mac full time.
If you happen to keep your files on an external drive as you work (glad I have put this onto practice recently), you just have to plug and unplug the USB hard drive from PC to Mac. With the need of extracting some files that you might want on a PC’s internal hard drive, you will have to evaluate the software you have installed, whether it be the same software on your Mac and where those files are located in the PC.
It is good to note that most of external hard drives you have are formatted as NTFS. An access to Paragon software will do the tricks, however if you will choose to be accessing that drive from a Mac alone starting today, it would be best to move those files from that drive then reformat it as HFS+. Then just put those files back on that drive. Voila! Everything is set for you and you may now play with your new toy.
Securing my files from online threats is actually one of the reasons I’m looking forward to shifting to a Mac. I’m hoping I’ll be able to experience the best security features it offers. Mac’s OS usually offers more readily available options in securing your files:
- It has a firewall feature that lets you activate the network filter and gives you access to control which programs can accept incoming connections. It can work on a per application basis which can give more flexibility
- There is a FileVault that can activate full disk encryption and will let you secure all your files on your drive, system files in your OS, apps, caches and even temporary files which may contain your personal info
- There’s this password management called keychain which lets you save and secure your passwords
- You can set up the security features of locking and locating your laptop so it gives you less worries
As the digital age is apparently helping us work faster and smarter, the above features are continuously being updated by Apple and more and more features, services and applications are being developed to aid you in protecting your sensitive information from viruses, phishing attacks and hackers in general.
That’s it for now. Guess I cannot hide the excitement in me to see myself using and maximizing the advantages of having a Mac. Oh and by the way, I believe the cost will all be worth it down the road.