updated 09:30 am EDT, Thu October 25, 2007
Early Leopard reviews up
Two major publications have already published reviews of Apple's Mac OS X Leopard, due for public sale on Friday. Walter Mossberg of the Wall Street Journal describes the operating system as an evolutionary release, but says that it is still "better and faster" than Windows Vista, with useful new features. Among these are the Time Machine backup system, Quick Look file previews, and the ability to browse with Cover Flow in Finder. Mossberg further notes that upon upgrading his iMac to Leopard, all his programs continued to function properly, including VMWare's Fusion application, used to merge Windows and Mac OS.
General speed is reported to be equal to Mac OS X Tiger, and in terms of start-up substantially faster than Windows Vista, launching in 38 seconds from a MacBook Pro versus Vista's time of two minutes from a Sony VAIO notebook. Complaints about Leopard are few; notable is a limitation of Time Machine, in that network backups can only be accomplished by copying to a hard disk attached to a Leopard Mac. The translucent Menu Bar can be difficult to read with dark wallpaper, and fonts on some websites may be illegible, a problem Apple is already aware of.
British newspaper the Telegraph also takes a favorable view of Leopard, praising elments such as Stacked Dock icons, and the ability of Mail to the detect key data, which can be then used to quickly add Address Book or iCal information. Time Machine is highlighted as the most important upgrade, simply because it automates the backup and restoration process, something many users many not be adept at. The paper in fact has no criticisms of the new OS, except that because it is not a dramatic upgrade, there is no reason to buy it immediately.