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Mac OSX is the best operating system.

What is the best OS regardless of compatability issues?  

54 members have voted

  1. 1. What is the best OS regardless of compatability issues?

    • Windows XP
      13
    • Windows Vista
      15
    • Ubuntu
      3
    • Other Linux
      4
    • Mac OSX
      11
    • Other Unix
      3
    • Other OS (Amiga FTW)
      5


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I dont like turtle necks... I just like vista because its fun to tool around and explore in. Imho there is nothing wrong with osx other then its GUI, i find it cumbersome and promotes poor work flow, also i resent the fact that you need to buy the proprietary hardware in order to use it.

Its not really propprietry... just slapped together by Apple employees.. and you only need to buy it to run it legally.

 

But yes, it has a poor workflow.

 

And no I havent been using it overnight, been using it for 3 years now.

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The bang for your buck factor is a lot higher for Vista you pay what $200 dollars for essentially unrestricted computing not governed by the problem that plagues OSX running many windows programs nativly ( program incompatibility, emulation does not solve many problems) especially for games and homebrew software.

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I personally dislike Mac OSX rather a lot, and I agree that the interface is very clunky (what's with things not actually quitting when you click the x button and you've returned to the desktop?! And why can you never truly maximise programs properly?).

Waa waa waa i used one os once and i can't deal with another possibly being different to what i expect oh god oh god what do i do now

 

<3 brains

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I personally dislike Mac OSX rather a lot, and I agree that the interface is very clunky (what's with things not actually quitting when you click the x button and you've returned to the desktop?! And why can you never truly maximise programs properly?).

Waa waa waa i used one os once and i can't deal with another possibly being different to what i expect oh god oh god what do i do now

 

No, that's what's called a 'personal opinion', based on my not-inconsiderable experience with Mac OSX.

 

Why does everyone feel the need to slam anyone who doesn't like OSX? To me it seems like illogical fanboy loyalty based upon a misguided belief that because you like it, it must be the best, no matter what anyone else thinks (or proves).

 

This whole topic is about which OS is the best (despite the rather misleading and provocative title), and, as has already been established, the 'best' OS is any one that you like and fulfills your needs as a PC user.

 

If you don't have anything of value to add to the discussion, don't say (or rather, type) anything.

Edited by rory k

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Why does everyone feel the need to slam anyone who doesn't like OSX? To me it seems like illogical fanboy loyalty based upon a misguided belief that because you like it, it must be the best, no matter what anyone else thinks (or proves).

Gold.

 

It seems like equally illogical fanboy loyalty to say that the OS sucks because a button doesn't do the same thing it does in Windows. The window management dichotomy is different. Not better, not worse, different. You might prefer one, but that by no means makes it a better OS.

 

It's funny how on one hand you're happy to say that brains just has an opinion, but your little "X button" safety blanket comparison is somehow proof?

 

If you don't have anything of value to add to the discussion, don't say (or rather, type) anything.

Likewise.

Edited by SquallStrife

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Why does everyone feel the need to slam anyone who doesn't like OSX? To me it seems like illogical fanboy loyalty based upon a misguided belief that because you like it, it must be the best, no matter what anyone else thinks (or proves).

Gold.

 

It seems like equally illogical fanboy loyalty to say that the OS sucks because a button doesn't do the same thing it does in Windows. The window management dichotomy is different. Not better, not worse, different. You might prefer one, but that by no means makes it a better OS.

 

It's funny how on one hand you're happy to say that brains just has an opinion, but your little "X button" safety blanket comparison is somehow proof?

 

If you don't have anything of value to add to the discussion, don't say (or rather, type) anything.

Likewise.

 

*facepalm*

 

I'm not saying OSX sucks, I'm saying I don't like it. There's a difference. If you'd bothered to actually read what I wrote earlier, you will notice I said "I personally dislike Mac OSX", yet somehow you take that as me saying "HURR Mac sux lolol HURR". The '"X button" safety blanket', as you so crudely put it, was intended as a continuation of my personal dislike of the operating system. Yes, I am well aware that buttons do slightly different things in OSX. I'm not saying that it's better or worse than Windows, just that I personally dislike it. Evidently I did not make myself clear enough.

 

When I say it has been 'proved', I admit I was exaggerating somewhat, but I was, in fact, referring to the whole 'OSX is less secure' section as discussed earlier. I do admit I did not make this very clear.

Edited by rory k

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OSX is very pretty and does what alot of people seem to need to do.

 

If I was a Video editor I would consider it, but other than that, my Vista netbook, XP work machine, blackberry and HTC TyTNII do the job that I need.

 

Saying one OS sucks because you can't use it, don't need it, or haven't been able to find a use for it outside of one thing, is stupid.

 

If you use all of the OS' to their full extent, and believe one to be useless, it is because it is useless to your needs.

 

I personally find XP to be useless to me, as it doesn't have the improved backbone that Vista has developed over the last two years.

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There's a reason I use Windows, OSX and Linux

 

OSX and Linux are shit for gaming

OSX and Windows aren't for some server stuff, OSX isn't so bad, but I've found it to be a pain in the ass to compile things on thanks to the linker apple uses.

OSX gives me the best user experience for general usage such as IM, Web Browsing and Multimedia.

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The Secret:

 

My point is, what are you calling 'secure'?

 

As I said, it's not as if there is a lack of willpower and reason to make os X viruses. Nor a lack of incentives.

 

There may exist proof of concept hacks, but as I pointed out, most of these attacks were only revealed to Apple AFTER being implemented. This isn't them a case of trying to force Apple's hands in response to inaction, however I'm aware that's happened in the past.

 

Generally, proof of concept means that in small controlled systems, specially designed code has been executed to enable penetration. I see that as extremely interesting, but manifestly different from a widespread problem. Now maybe it's just me, but hasn't windows for example, instituted many security features because of fundamental flaws in their implementations? Surely these features aren't as urgently required in an OS that doesn't have the same exploits.

 

Now my point isn't that OS X is totally secure. My point is that I don't think we'll see the explosion in OS X vulnerabilities and viruses that have been predicted since 2004ish. Every year is doomsday for OS X security. And yet it never materialises. It's simultaneously the boy who cried wolf, and a sense of dangerous complacency (that is, I see it as a two-way fault).

 

At the end of the day, all systems are vulnerable to something. It doesn't matter how hardened your OS is, or what your architecture. At the end of the day, physical access is game-over. It's the end-game for os x, unix, linux and windows, regardless of any other factor. It's been shown in numerous white papers. Simply put, there are many aspects to computing that are simply assumed to be 'safe'. In many of these demonstrated vulnerabilities for quicktime and safari, for example, the user is required to attempt to open a particular doctored file, in a particular manner, and in some cases do it as root.

 

Now that's patently ridiculous. I'm all for security concerns (and I'm pro AV software on os x, simply to prevent spread of infect files to windows machines at the very least), but I take with a grain of salt any suggestion that OS X 'safety' as zeb succinctly put it, is going to be catastrophically, and totally compromised in the next 12 months as opposed to any other 12 month period over the past five years.

 

Can you see my point? Or am I being obtuse?

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I'd probably use Mac OSX, except you have to buy expensive apple branded computers to run it on.

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The Secret:

 

My point is, what are you calling 'secure'?

 

As I said, it's not as if there is a lack of willpower and reason to make os X viruses. Nor a lack of incentives.

I did not really get that as your point, but OK.

 

A secure system, in this context, i.e. mainstream PC operating systems, would try to implement forms of prevention, would have sufficient access controls, and security considered in the design, at the least.

 

These 3 points, while far from all-encompassing are significant. Apple has not bothered much with prevention; Technologies such as ASLR and DEP. These technologies make it harder to execute exploits, requiring a lot more work. They are far from foolproof, but they are a decent deterrent. Apple did not even bother to include these well established technologies. They have sufficient access controls, but far from great. They certainly do not have a secure design. Just how many suid programs are there by default?

 

There is almost certainly a lack of incentive to write viruses for OS X, as I explained previously. However, I don't want to discuss this further, as I fell it is derailing from the core topic of the security of OS X.

 

There may exist proof of concept hacks, but as I pointed out, most of these attacks were only revealed to Apple AFTER being implemented. This isn't them a case of trying to force Apple's hands in response to inaction, however I'm aware that's happened in the past.

 

Generally, proof of concept means that in small controlled systems, specially designed code has been executed to enable penetration. I see that as extremely interesting, but manifestly different from a widespread problem. Now maybe it's just me, but hasn't windows for example, instituted many security features because of fundamental flaws in their implementations? Surely these features aren't as urgently required in an OS that doesn't have the same exploits.

I was asked to provide an example of vulnerabilities not requiring user consent, and so I did. The fact that Apple was not made aware is kind of irrelevant. Sometimes they will be made aware and release a patch before the exploit is release. Sometimes Apple won't have a chance. Sometimes they won't bother or will be slow to release a patch, which they tend to have a history of. The point is, sooner or later, an exploit will be possible, which is true for every OS.

 

The difference is, OS X is far easier to exploit, than either Linux(well..., it depends on the configuration, since there is more variation) or Windows post XP SP2. This is a weak point, and a key reason why I consider OS X to be less secure. Basic attacks from many moons ago, that the other platforms have still fixed, Apple is still vulnerable to. If anything, the homogeneity of the Apple platform is an advantageous for anyone coding malware/viruses for the Mac. All the machines are going to act in the same way. Now, that's just useful.

 

Now, you are limiting the definition of proof of concept. What it means, is that the vulnerability can be exploited, with the published code. That is all. There have been many, mnay, many cases of viruses for windows being based on proof of concept words. It's not as trivial as you keep trying to make it out to be. Windows certainly had a poor security record for a long time. But, within the last 5 years, they have pulled their head in. In a lot of areas, they are far ahead of Apple. I also think it is a bit naive to say security is not required due to the lack of exploits. It is precisely this thinking that led to Microsoft being in the mess they were/are.

 

Now my point isn't that OS X is totally secure. My point is that I don't think we'll see the explosion in OS X vulnerabilities and viruses that have been predicted since 2004ish. Every year is doomsday for OS X security. And yet it never materialises. It's simultaneously the boy who cried wolf, and a sense of dangerous complacency (that is, I see it as a two-way fault).

I agree that historically that doomsday for OS X has been over typed. This does not mean it is a joke for targeted attacks. Despite the emphasis in your posts on viruses, targeted attacks are not to be dismissed. I definitely think that because of the target that OS X, because of their increasing market share and because of Windows becoming a far less attractive target, the attacks on OS X will, inevitably, increase. Analysts have been saying this for a while, for different reasons, knowing it *will* happen, but being unsure of when. I am confident it will be in the next 5 years, probably in the next 3, but then maybe I'm wrong. We can only wait and see.

 

At the end of the day, all systems are vulnerable to something. It doesn't matter how hardened your OS is, or what your architecture. At the end of the day, physical access is game-over. It's the end-game for os x, unix, linux and windows, regardless of any other factor. It's been shown in numerous white papers. Simply put, there are many aspects to computing that are simply assumed to be 'safe'. In many of these demonstrated vulnerabilities for quicktime and safari, for example, the user is required to attempt to open a particular doctored file, in a particular manner, and in some cases do it as root.

Which is due to the poor security design of OS X. It does not have to be this way. Furthermore, perhaps have a read up on MAC and RBAC a bit more. It addresses the fact that computers will be vulnerable. This does not mean security has to be compromised. I realise that may not make sense, so to clarify, I understand a system may be exploited, but this does not have to result in a loss of availability or a breach of confidentiality. At the moment, physical access aside, OS X is more vulnerable that my hardened linux or my install of Vista. It's certainly safer, than vista at least, since it is far less targeted.

 

As a far from perfect analogy, I would consider OS X to be the equivalent of a beautiful mansion in quite suburbs, with a fence and one or two doors left unlocked. I would consider Vista and Linux to be closer to a house with a burglar alarm, electric fence, guard dogs and moat, with people constantly trying to bypass these deterrents, and sometimes succeeding.

 

Now that's patently ridiculous. I'm all for security concerns (and I'm pro AV software on os x, simply to prevent spread of infect files to windows machines at the very least), but I take with a grain of salt any suggestion that OS X 'safety' as zeb succinctly put it, is going to be catastrophically, and totally compromised in the next 12 months as opposed to any other 12 month period over the past five years.

Remember, safety, is quite a different matter from security, although the two can be related. I certainly don't think there will be a catastrophic compromise within 12 months, but I do see the trend increasing, as it has been, and possibly the first in the wild virus for macs. It will be a milestone more than anything. I won't be surprised if 5 years from now, Apple is where Microsoft was 5 years ago in regards to security, due to repeating their mistakes.

Edited by TheSecret

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Maybe I'm being a bit obtuse, but is the point of your post, that OS X is less secure, and thus easier to compromise in the real world, than XP SP2?

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Maybe I'm being a bit obtuse, but is the point of your post, that OS X is less secure, and thus easier to compromise in the real world, than XP SP2?

No.

 

It was a point that OS X lacks basic security technologies that XP SP2 has.

 

It was a point that OS X is less secure and easier to compromise than Vista, Linux or W7.

Edited by TheSecret

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In terms of your earlier post, isn't Apple currently implementing ASLR?

 

DEP is a windows only implementation, and the kind of attacks ASLR can defeat, can be used to disable it, right?

 

Are these the basic issues you are talking about?

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If you don't have anything of value to add to the discussion, don't say (or rather, type) anything.

Hey at least we're getting the forums moving...

 

But no I'm not narrow minded or anything I just think that IMO OSX has the best GUI, isn't clunky and best for everyday use.

If Win7 proves to be as good as XP with a good GUI I'm all in. In fact I might actually buy it ;)

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In terms of your earlier post, isn't Apple currently implementing ASLR?

 

DEP is a windows only implementation, and the kind of attacks ASLR can defeat, can be used to disable it, right?

 

Are these the basic issues you are talking about?

They are the two most prominent examples I have put forward, yes.

 

Apple technically implements ASLR. In a terrible, terrible way, that only supports what I have been saying, that they have not put much thought into their design when it comes to security. The ALSR in OS X is limited to where libraries are loaded. That may prevent some return to libc attacks. Without bothering to randomise the stack, heap code locations, their implementation is rather worthless.

 

I am aware DEP is a windows only implementation, but thought it was shorter than calling it executable code space protection, or to a different implementation such as PaX. Certainly some of the attacks ASLR would help to prevent could be used to prevent disabling executable code space protection, however this is not the only attack vector. It does not change the fact that it still requires a great deal more work to bypass the prevention. In addition, only 64bit binaries are protected by Apples implementation, leaving all the 32bit binary executables vulnerable.

 

I would still be interested if you can find a blog/report from any security research stating that OS X is secure.

 

If you're going to start arguing against the merits of the above two particular technologies, then I feel you may have missed my point.

Edited by TheSecret

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Nah mate, I was just interested.

It will be interesting to see whether the implementation of ALSR is changed by he time Snow Leopard launches.

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Cool.

 

Hmm, Apple may be taking the right steps according to this.

 

Snow Leapord will have expanded sandboxing, better ASLR and proper executable space protection. The article is light on details, so it remains to be seen how much this has improved.

 

I don't know how reliable that page is however. I disagree that Apple has been proactive in regards to security however, an opinion voiced in the article.

 

Another article.

 

Sounds pretty interesting. Mandatory code signing for kernel extensions will be interesting, something that Apple is in a unique position to do.

 

People may find this interesting, as a possible prediction as to when malware will become a problem on macs, suing game theory.

Edited by TheSecret

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