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Oregon State increases reliance on Macs

updated 09:25 pm EST, Tue February 26, 2008

Oregon State Mac usage

A growing number of professors at Oregon State University are relying on Macs, according to one report. Reasons for the increased Mac usage include PC compatibility, an improved operating system, 'Get a Mac' ads, and better technical support. While Macs don't comprise a majority of the computers at Oregon State -- roughly 150 out of 3,000, or 5 percent -- the number of Macs is rising, according to CIO. "Macs are more friendly to PC users than they used to be," said Tammy Barr, the director of technology services at the school. Apple's Boot Camp software and applications like Parallels Desktop enable PC users to work in their own environment on newer Macs, easing the transition process.

Barr said Macs used to be notorious for 'bomb' system errors, but Mac OS X has changed all that.

"Now Macs have a much more stable operating system," she said, noting that Oregon State currently support Mac OS X 10.4, as well as a few Mac OS X 10.3 clients. The school is also working to transition to Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard.

Apple's popular 'Get a Mac' TV spots are also causing a stir, according to Dave Nevin, IT manager for college community network.

"The Mac vs. PC ads are very compelling marketing; and I think they've had sway," Nevin said.

Technical support stands as a fourth reason the University is relying more on Macs than ever before. Apple's system software relies more and more on Web-based applications, which reduce the importance of the underlying operating system.

"Since I went to a Unix base, it's become easier to find people who are familiar with the core of the Mac OS," Nevin explained. "So support is getting simpler because of that familiarity."

Nevin says Macs are quicker to deploy than PCs, and that training users is a smoother process. The IT manager admitted however that PCs are easier to support overall because updates can be created centrally and released to users automatically. Mac OS X does not yet offer that capability.




by MacNN Staff

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Comments

  1. rkortas

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Auto software updates OSX

    "IT manager admitted however that PCs are easier to support overall because updates can be created centrally and released to users automatically. Mac OS X does not yet offer that capability."

    This is not correct you are able to have an xserve act as an update server and all clients will go to that automatically at a predefined period to check and install updates.

  1. jscotta

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Apple Remote Desktop?

    Someone needs to expose Nevin to Apple Remote Desktop where pushing updates out to many Macs is easy. Plus, I seem to recall that OS X Server may also have that capability. However, even that isn't needed if they use NetBoot.

  1. Sondjata

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    RADMIND

    If they pay me I'll set up RADMIND for them. They can have all the centralized updates they want.

  1. Monde

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Bombs?

    Haven't seen one of those since OS9-what decade of computing is this IT guy talking about? XP and Vista are tenfold glitchy and antiquated compared to OSX. Yeeesh!

    Vista and XP keep these dudes pockets lined, which is why they like the Windows platform. Without it, and they might have to find other employment. Perhaps they can help Apple out with those bombs.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Re: bombs

    Haven't seen one of those since OS9-what decade of computing is this IT guy talking about? XP and Vista are tenfold glitchy and antiquated compared to OSX. Yeeesh!

    Yeesh! I can't believe the incredible amount of people on these boards who have a problem comprehending! Probably because they're all waiting to find something to bash, so they see a word, and go "Hey, let's beat down these guys as MS drones!"

    Let's see the quote again: Barr said Macs used to be notorious for 'bomb' system errors, but Mac OS X has changed all that.

    So exactly what is your problem? He's praising OS X and you still blast him.

    To paraphrase another poster....

    doofus

  1. zaghahzag

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    macs on campus here

    At my university macs have a huge market share among students and professors and it's growing all the time. All my fellow students who had to replace laptops in the last two years got macs. Parallels/bootcamp + a unix foundation have made the switch easier and frankly its a better system than a PC (as long as money isn't an option).

  1. bhuot

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    go home troll

    "Let's see the quote again: Barr said Macs used to be notorious for 'bomb' system errors, but Mac OS X has changed all that.

    So exactly what is your problem? He's praising OS X and you still blast him.

    To paraphrase another poster....

    doofus"

    Because 0S X has been out of beta at least 5 years now and they are supposedly tech professionals who haven't checked out the competition in 5 years. That is an eternity in the tech industry. What if everyone was still stuck with Microsoft technology of 5 years ago - oh I guess they are as they made even worse products in the mean time. It further cements the suspicions we have all had that the reason people don't use Macs is that they haven't tried any in the last 5 years.

  1. bhuot

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    go home troll

    "Let's see the quote again: Barr said Macs used to be notorious for 'bomb' system errors, but Mac OS X has changed all that.

    So exactly what is your problem? He's praising OS X and you still blast him.

    To paraphrase another poster....

    doofus"

    This is like saying - you know Microsoft no longer uses DOS for their OS.

  1. Guest

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Testudo

    I was right, you have no life.

    I mourn for thee.

  1. Monde

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Doofus trolls

    Testudo rears his head once again to defend this IT dope. Talking about the lack of "bombs" would be like discussing how Windows Vista is so much better than Windows 98.

    I guess testudo is incapable of understanding how clued that comparison is. Of course, if you run everything you post through a MS filter, your bound to be clued. If you're taking problems with the present OS you'd be discussing kernel panics not bombs. What is evidenced by such a out-of-touch observation is the complete ignorance of the alternative platform. The Mac OS is presently 2-4 years ahead of the MS offerings. I use both-this is a fact.

    Yet, there is that BSOD bomb which still is common with all the versions of windows, but that butters this guy's bread, so why mention that. Oh viruses, hardware incompatibility, Vista ready mislabeling, and on-and on....

    Oh as for the doofus comment. This is a time worn technique of individuals with weak arguments-call your opponents names. Puts you at about grade school level, but then why would I be surprised at that-you're a MS user and that insulting enough for me.

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