News & Observer writer dumps Dell with Windows for iMac G5 with Apple’s Mac OS X Tiger

“For my new computer, I wanted a 20-inch flat-panel display, 1 gigabyte of memory and a 250 gigabyte hard drive. I also wanted to be able to write to a CD and DVD. The finalists were a Dell machine with Windows XP Pro and an iMac G5 with Mac OS X Tiger,” Arati Bechtel writes for The News & Observer (North Carolina, USA). “I could not exactly compare apples with apples, so to speak. The iMac includes built-in hardware — such as a camera, wireless card and speakers — the Dell lacks, and the processors are different. Nevertheless, the iMac is cheaper by about $70.”

Bechtel reports, “I think I am in love with my new computer. It is good-looking and powerful, and it has a sense of humor. I like to watch it while it sleeps and I look forward to seeing it each morning… There is no chunky mini-tower and separate monitor. The iMac is all one sleek, widescreen piece about two inches thick, resting on an aluminum stand. My desk is uncluttered, especially so with a wireless mouse and keyboard. The computer runs quietly and quickly, and the operating system is very stable and more secure than Windows XP, according to technology writer Walter Mossberg of The Wall Street Journal.”

“Transferring most files from the Windows 98 machine to the iMac was easy; I burned my files on the Dell to a CD, popped the CD into the iMac and copied those files to the Mac hard drive… The documents I create in Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint on the iMac work without a glitch on Windows computers, and vice versa,” Bechtel reports. “Viruses, adware and spyware worry me less now because hackers are less likely to target the Mac operating system with its relatively small market share. About 20 percent of Mac users reported in a 2005 Consumer Reports survey that they had found a virus on their machines in the past two years compared with 66 percent of Windows users who said they had. Still, I enabled the firewall built into the iMac, installed Norton AntiVirus and am looking for a good program to root out spyware and adware. This brings me to one downside of the iMac: fewer software choices. There is no Ad-Aware for the Mac.”

Full article here.

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MacDailyNews Take: The Consumer Reports survey did not distinguish between Mac OS X and earlier Mac operating systems (that are discontinued) and also did not discount Microsoft Macro Viruses or Windows viruses that may find their way onto Macs, but do not affect the Mac at all. There are no viruses for Mac OS X. Consumer Reports did a disservice to their readers with their flawed survey. See related articles below. There is no Ad-Aware for Mac OS X because there is no adware or spyware for Mac OS X. Mac OS X is inherently more secure than Windows. It is not a factor of “Security via Obscurity.” That is a myth. For most Windows users switching to Mac O SX, old habits die hard.

There are zero Mac OS X viruses. Excluding Microsoft Word and Excel Macro Viruses, there were about 25 viruses total that affected the original or “classic” Mac OS.

There are zero-percent (0%) of viruses for the Mac OS X platform that should, logically, have some 10-16% of the world’s viruses if platforms’ install bases dictated the numbers of viruses. The fact that Mac OS X has zero (0) viruses discounts “security via obscurity.” There should be at least some Mac OS X viruses. There are none. The reason for this fact is not attributable solely to “obscurity,” it’s attributable to superior security design.

According to Apple, there are “close to 16 million Mac OS X users” in the world and there are still zero (0) viruses. According to CNET, the Windows Vista Beta was released “to about 10,000 testers” at the time the first Windows Vista virus arrived. So much for the security via obscurity myth.

Related MacDailyNews articles:
Consumer Reports dubiously finds 20-percent of Mac users ‘detected’ virus in last two years -UPDATED – August 10, 2005

$500 bounty offered for proof of first Apple Mac OS X virus – September 27, 2005
Symantec: 10,866 new Microsoft Windows virus and worm variants in first half 2005 – September 19, 2005
Cargo magazine describes Apple’s Mac OS X’s immunity to viruses, spyware as ‘relative’ – September 10, 2005
ZDNet Australia publishes latest Mac OS X security FUD article – September 9, 2005
Hackers already targeting viruses for Microsoft’s Windows Vista – August 04, 2005
16-percent of computer users are unaffected by viruses, malware because they use Apple Macs – June 15, 2005
ZDNet: How many Mac OS X users affected by the last 100 viruses? None, zero, not one, not ever – August 18, 2005
Intel CEO Otellini: If you want security now, buy a Macintosh instead of a Wintel PC – May 25, 2005
Apple touts Mac OS X security advantages over Windows – April 13, 2005
97,467 Microsoft Windows viruses vs. zero for Apple Mac’s OS X – April 05, 2005
Joke of the month: Gartner warns of Mac OS X ‘spyware infestation’ potential – March 30, 2005
Apple’s Mac OS X is virus-free – March 18, 2005
Cybersecurity advisor Clarke questions why anybody would buy from Microsoft – February 18, 2005
Security test: Windows XP system easily compromised while Apple’s Mac OS X stands safe and secure – November 30, 2004
Apple: ‘Opener’ is not a virus, Trojan horse, or worm – November 02, 2004
Microsoft: The safest way to run Windows is on your Mac – October 08, 2004
Information Security Investigator says switch from Windows to Mac OS X for security – September 24, 2004
Defending Windows over Mac a sign of mental illness – December 21, 2003
Columnist tries the ‘security through obscurity’ myth to defend Windows vs. Macs on virus front – October 1, 2003
New York Times: Mac OS X ‘much more secure than Windows XP’ – September 18, 2003
Fortune columnist: ‘get a Mac’ to thwart viruses; right answer for the wrong reasons – September 02, 2003
Shattering the Mac OS X ‘security through obscurity’ myth – August 28, 2003
Virus and worm problems not just due to market share; Windows inherently insecure vs. Mac OS X – August 24, 2003


  1. On one hand, it’s nice to hear people switching, especially in a public way. But it’s annoying when they aren’t fully aware just how good they have it with a Mac. Hopefully this guy will write a follow-up as he learns the better way.

  2. “I like to watch it while it sleeps and I look forward to seeing it each morning… “

    Yes it’s love alright!!

    Don’t jump down the newbies throat too hard, just make a few polite corrections and welcome our new Mac friend to a happier computing experience. ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”smile” style=”border:0;” />

  3. I am surprised whenever the N&O gets anything right. Locally they are known as “The Views and Disturber”, so I would say this is incredible that they were smart enough to realize Mac’s even existed – I will forgive the lack of virus understanding. Who knows next week they may discover that there are two political Parties.

  4. I liked his article in spite of the few errors. I think I’ll send him an email and tell him to remove that Norton Anti-Virus program for the Mac. It has caused many users problems. I’ve never used it. I’m thinking of using one of the free anti-virus programs just so I don’t pass along a MS Word macro virus to a Windows user (if I ever get one).

    Remember, we have to be gentle with newbies. Its hard for newbies to comprehend that they don’t need all the protection required for Windows.

    MW = family. We are family (sing along folks). We are family …

  5. If 100% of functioning PCs run antiviral software and adware and (I’m guessing) 90% of Macs are used without any protective software other than the OS itself, which represents the larger potential target?

  6. Hello Mr. ARATI BECHTEL.

    I’m happy that you’ve come over from the dark side and now enjoy the “VIRUS FREE” iMac.


    You definitely do not need Norton or any other costly virus software. Possibly sometime in the future you may, but you’ll have to purposely allow any virus into your Mac.

    “Most Mac users gaze on smugly as reports of each new Windows security crisis break. And they have good reason – research from Sophos PLC showed that 68 viruses have affected the Mac while 97,467 have affected Windows. Of those 68, most are a decade old or older and don’t directly affect OS X,” Digit Magazine reports.

    “However, although it may seem that there’s no reason to worry about security on your Mac, you shouldn’t think you’re completely safe. Apple’s regular Security Update releases prove that there is cause for concern, and common sense suggests that you’re most vulnerable when you let your guard down,” Digit reports. “So how can you tell the difference between scaremongering and true dangers? We examined nine common beliefs about Mac security – and show you what you really need to worry about.”

    MacDailyNews Note: We could only find six, not nine, common beliefs explored by Digit’s article:
    • Mac users don’t need to worry about viruses: False, Worry only because you can pass them on to Windows users.
    • You’re vulnerable to Windows viruses if you run emulation software: True
    • Mac users don’t need to worry about spyware: True
    • When I’m using a wireless network at home, I’m totally safe: False. Worry only because you can pass them on to Windows users.
    • When I’m using a public hotspot, all of my passwords are being stolen: False
    • The Mac’s default security settings are all you need to protect your computer from hacker attacks: False

    The six points above are explored and explained in the full article here.

    MacDailyNews Take: Mac OS X users have 0 viruses vs. Windows 97,467 viruses. Yikes!

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