My way to Apple

My desktop (Windows) and server (Linux) in 1999

My desktop (Windows) and server (Linux) in 1999

A few years ago, I couldn't imagine to use a Apple Macintosh someday. My first computer was a Intel 80486 PC running Windows 3.11. Though I already installed my first SuSE Linux on that 484 machine wiping accidentally the primary partition I stayed with operating systems from Microsoft on my desktop until Windows XP. Then I decided to switch to Gentoo Linux on my desktop which I had used on my servers for quiet sometime. I left a copy of Windows on a dual-boot partition for gaming and some applications like Photoshop which have no Linux version.

When I needed a new laptop in early 2008 I decided to buy a black MacBook. I wanted a small and robust laptop from a major brand like HP, IBM, Dell and so on (as I had made bad experiences with cheeps brands) with a good price/performance ratio. I ended up with a black refurbished MacBook. So the choice was only a hardware decision. I didn't even think about using OS X. Installing Gentoo Linux on the MacBook was a little bit tricky as you needed to from UEFI, which was not that common during these days. I needed to write some special keyboard quirks for which I submitted my first Linux kernel patch (commit) and as there we're only Windows binary drivers for the WiFi card I replaced it with a better supported card from Intel. From my Job at IT Support I was used to open computers and notebooks, but I never had seen a device before like that which was so easy to open and well organized inside. I left OS X partition on the macbook to be able to run firmware and for the first two years this was to only reason for me to boot up OS X.

In spring of 2009 I needed a new mobile phone. As I am fan of open hardware and software I wasn't sure if a iPhone 3G would be the perfect choice for me, but it was the best phone on the market by far. So I finally bought one and was very happy with it. Surprisingly I didn't feel the need for changing anything on the phone. It was designed perfectly and everything just worked.

My last PC desktop running Gentoo Linux

My last PC desktop running Gentoo Linux

When I bought my first DSLR in 2010 I used an Intel Core 2 Quad workstation with two graphic cards and three cheap 23" screens with bad viewing angles. On the search for a better screen I found the iMac as an option. I never imagined using a compact PC like this before but what I had seen from my MacBook interior I thought that this could work. From my iPhone I had learned that software from Apple seemed to designed intelligent and so I started using OS X on my MacBook to get a feeling for it. After a very short time I loved it! I am a terminal geek and I could do everything more or less the same way I did it under my Gentoo Linux before plus I could use application like Photoshop natively. By chance I found a nice german podcast mobileMacs and learned that there are other people really work with that operating system. Even gaming was possible as Blizzard released all the games also for OS X. And it just worked! I was used to fix some problems after recompiling the kernel after an update or a hardware change, but this just worked!

Installing SSD in iMac

So I finally decided to buy the 27" version of the iMac. As I didn't want to abandon my SSD, but didn't want to buy the over-priced slow SSD option from Apple as well I did some research in advance if I could add my own. After my iMac arrived I installed my old SSD and reinstalled OS X on it.

Since then I have become a real Apple Fanboy. I upgraded my iPhone to iPhone 4 and later iPhone 4S and bought the best tablet PC on the market. I upgraded my MacBook to an MacBook Air last year which I just love and I even own two Apple TVs for streaming video and music simultaneously via AirPlay.

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About the author

My name is Tobias Müller. I'm interested in com­puters, physics, elec­tronics and photo­graphy. more …

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